Path To The Pros
Kirkland, Wash. native Victor Marshall has taken an unconventional route toward life in the NFL.
It started at nearby Juanita High School and continued at Arizona’s Mesa Community College. From there it was a stint at the University of Idaho followed by a trip north to Canada’s Simon Fraser University and the University of British Columbia. Then it was on to private team workouts and several NFL regional scouting combines – most recently as last month at Virginia Mason Athletic Center and again at the Super Regional in Dallas, Texas.
“I’ve lived here my whole life, so the Seahawks have always been my favorite team,” Marshall said the day after he signed his deal with the club. “That’s the biggest thing – not only making it to the NFL, but being able to play for the Seahawks and put on that helmet. It’s surreal.”
The Seahawks inked the 6-foot-4, 235-pound product earlier this week as one of just two players to make it out of the 38 tryouts who were invited during last weekend’s three-day rookie minicamp. Marshall ran a 4.52-second 40-yard dash during last month’s regional combine at VMAC and that speed was on full display as he saw playing time at tight end throughout the weekend’s workout.
“It’s just crazy meeting the guys and being here and practicing with them now,” he said. “I still can’t believe this is real and everything. It’s crazy.”
Until last weekend, Marshall’s competitive football career had been entirely spent at the wide receiver position.
“When I went to minicamp here that was the very first time I’ve ever done any tight end work or anything like that,” Marshall said. “The number one thing that I was trying to do was to soak in as much of the knowledge and coaching I could get.”
Marshall isn’t the first player that the Seahawks have envisioned at a different position with the hope of maximizing potential returns on that player. Red Bryant has flourished since his 2010 move from defensive tackle to run-stuffing defensive end. Allen Bradford, a running back for head coach Pete Carroll while at USC, made the switch to linebacker for the Seahawks when he was claimed off waivers from the Tampa Bay Buccaneers in 2011. Last year’s seventh-round draft pick J.R. Sweezy played his college ball on the defensive side of the line, but the team moved him to offensive line at the next level. And 2013 seventh-round draft pick Jared Smith will get the “Sweezy treatment” this year, as the club hopes he too can make the transition from D-line to O-line.
Marshall doesn’t mind the switch. He’s willing to do whatever it takes to contribute.
“I’ve dreamed of this moment my whole life,” Marshall said. “If that’s what they want me to do, then that’s where I’m going to go. I feel like it could be nice because I’ve got the linebackers guarding me, so I can create a mismatch on them with my speed. I’m definitely up for the challenge.”