The Seahawks Thursday signed a pair of free agents hours before the start of the NFL draft, adding DL Tavaris Barnes and TE Brandon Williams. The New Orleans Saints waived Barnes Monday, while Williams, who attended the University of Oregon, saw action in four games last year with the Miami Dolphins.
Neither signing is expected to alter Seattle’s plans for Thursday night’s first round of the draft, in which the Seahawks hold the No. 26 pick. Seattle is widely expected to trade out of the first in order to acquire additional picks. The Seahawks have not drafted in the first round since 2012, when they selected LB Bruce Irvin.
The 6-foot-3, 269-pound Barnes signed with the Saints last year as an undrafted free agent out of Clemson. Along with Bobby Richardson and Kaleb Eulls, he was one of three undrafted rookie defensive linemen to make the team in training camp. He could bee in the competition replace for Irvin. He saw action at defensive tackle and defensive end.
Williams also entered the NFL as an undrafted free agent. He spent his first three years with the Carolina Panthers before joining the Dolphins. Williams has made four catches for 44 yards during his career, all coming with Carolina in 2014.