Archive for April, 2013

A look at the Seahawks’ 2013 draft visit list (part IV)

Wednesday, April 24th, 2013

Isaac Remington: putting the "awww" in awkward.

Continued from parts I II and III

Michael Brooks, DT, East Carolina

6’2⅜”, 294 pounds.  5.01 in the forty.  No video on youtube.  Classic 3-tech measurables.  Likely to be undrafted.

Ryan Robertson, QB, Central Washington

6’2⅜”, 202 pound quarterback.  No video on youtube.  Likely to be undrafted.  You can read his bio page here, which for some reason mentions that he has an older sister, and lists her name and age.

Justin Veltung, WR, Idaho

5’11”, 182 pound receiver.  A highly impressive athlete:  4.46 in the forty with a 42.5″ vertical jump.  His 20 yard shuttle, 3-cone, and broad jump numbers would be in elite company at the NFL combine.  His speed is on the good side of average- comparable to Doug Baldwin.  I really like him as a “moves” runner.

Zac Dysert, QB, Miami-Ohio

I see a lot of John Skelton in Zac Dysert.  I’m not a fan.  That said, I’d be supportive of the pick because Dysert will enter the NFL as a “cool to like” prospect.  Reputation is the driving force behind market value.  If Seattle makes Dysert look good, a lot of teams will remember how much they liked Dysert’s arm talent coming out of college and think Seattle proved him to be the real deal.  It would make trading Dysert at a profit easier.  It’s a similar situation to Nick Foles in Philly, so drafting Dysert as a future trade hopeful makes a degree of sense, even if I personally don’t think much of him.  Then again, I didn’t think much of Foles, either.

I do think Dysert fits our system as the Seahawks highly value mobility plus arm talent, and Dysert’s combination of those traits is very good, particularly on the arm talent side.

Anthony Watkins, SS, Oregon State

6’1½”, 213.  No official forty, but his estimated time isn’t very good.  Pure in the box safety.  Probably won’t be drafted.

His youtube video was created and posted on youtube by BW video productions, a company that has rendered just one other service for an NFL hopeful:  Justin Veltung.  The same guy from 60 seconds ago.  Weird.

Greg Herd, WR, Eastern Washington

The onslaught of local football players continues.  Why do NFL teams still track local guys an inordinate amount?  If I’m ever so fortunate as to interview John Schneider I must ask him this question, because you’d assume that scouting departments wouldn’t care as much about proximity these days.  Maybe it’s because undrafted free agents might prefer to stay closer to home?  Jermaine Kearse, Lavasier Tuinei, and Jeron Johnson fit in with that theory.

Anyway, Herd:  6’3″, 202, 4.53 forty at his pro-day.

Given his talent, size, and athleticism, it’s interesting that Herd wasn’t able to elicit a scholarship offer from Washington State.  He wound up being the number one receiver of one of the FCS’s (aka Division Ia) best teams the last few years.  I still wish the Seahawks had given his former quarterback, Bo Levi Mitchell, a tryout.  Getting his top receiver in for a close look is a nice rebound.

Semisi Tokolahi, DT, Washington

I’m a Huskies fan, and I have no idea who Semisi Tokolahi is.  There was a time aeons ago when I was more a Huskies fan than a Seahawks fan.  Now I’m hearing a Huskies’ players name for the first time while writing about him on a site called Seahawks Draft Blog.

This list of names gets better, I promise.

After looking him up, he’s a 341 pound run stuffer.  Maybe I’m reading too much into things, but if Seattle thinks Tokolahi is even worth considering, then you’d have to think they’d have a good deal of interest in Brandon Williams or Montori Hughes.

Random Note: My spell-checker thinks Tokolahi’s name should be “Ayatollah.”  Colin Pumpernickel (49ers) had better watch his ass.

Justin Glenn, SS, Washington

Though Washington’s defense has been much maligned up until the 2012 season, it’s had some very impressive talent in the secondary.  Though I think Desmond Trufant is slightly over-rated on draft sites, he has a real chance to be a 1st round pick and Shaq Thompson is a probable future high pick himself (though it’s not clear if he will stick at safety or linebacker, as he can play both).  Sean Parker is not highly touted but is one of Washington’s best defenders.  Justin Glenn is a great player himself, but was limited by injuries and stiff competition.

Of all the players in this entire series, Glenn strikes me as the most likely to be a future UDFA for Seattle.  It would take a local team to know the quality of Glenn’s play (don’t forget the Sarkisian/Carroll connection, either).  His measurables don’t jump out at you- he’s just 5’10, 210, and ran a 4.59 forty.  That said, when you put on the tape, you see a very complete football player.  Jeron Johnson would be a pretty good comparison.  Huskies fans that follow the team closer than I do were constantly singing Glenn’s praises and counting down the days when he’d return from injury.

Isaac Remington, DT, Oregon

Remington (6’6″, 298) has a build much like new addition Tony McDaniel (6’6″, 305).  Remington is pretty unique.  It’s not every day you see a defensive lineman with a pro-day forty time in the 5.3s (while weighing under 300 pounds) getting phone calls from NFL teams.  I’m curious to know how Seattle views Remington.  3-tech?  Run stuffer that needs to add weight?  Red Bryant role?

Cooper Taylor, SS, Richmond

You might remember that over the past few months I’ve linked a couple of my mock drafts from Seahawks.net here.  Cooper Taylor is a player I’ve been on in the late rounds forever, and I’ve included him in nearly every one of my mocks to date. The video above is probably the most impressive highlight I’ve ever seen that was recorded by a potato.  Or maybe it was a lime?

Standing just a quarter inch under 6’5″, Taylor ran a 4.49 forty at his pro day while weighing in at 228 pounds.  Incredible.  He’d only need to add a few pounds to play linebacker in the NFL, and if he did, he’d be one of the fastest linebackers in the league.  He hits like a linebacker on tape, too.  If he stayed at safety, he’d be one of the biggest strong safeties in the league and not many of his big safety contemporaries would run a 4.49.  He’s Taylor Mays physically, but he might not be Taylor Mays mentally.  If you catch my drift.

Possessing remarkable tools and size for the safety position, Cooper Taylor offers incredible scheme versatility to a team like Seattle that blurs the line between their big defensive backs and fast linebackers.  At a minimum Taylor would likely be an excellent special teams contributor, but it’s hard to read Taylor’s measurables and watch him explode into tackles in his highlight reel and not be left coveting his services.

Fun fact:  The Richmond Spiders football program has one very famous NFL graduate- who also played defensive back.  He goes by the name Todd McShay.

Who picks “spiders” as their school mascot anyway?

Christine Michael, RB, Texas A&M

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LCVqxFeWFoU

I’ve only taken the time to write about one running back this draft season, and that was Christine Michael almost exactly one month ago.  I’m not saying Michael deserves to be the first running back drafted, but he’s my favorite this year and I really like his value in the 50-100 range.

He’s not without red flags, but his athletic talent is off-the-charts impressive.  His height, weight, speed, college tape, and even some of his problems are extremely similar to former 3rd round pick Ahman Green.  To say the least, I was more than a little happy to see Michael’s exuberant twitter extravaganza regarding his (until then) secret trip to the VMAC.  You think Seattle had hoped to keep that visit on the down low?  I think they did.

Two days to go…

Tuesday, April 23rd, 2013

Will Luke Joeckel or Eric Fisher be forced to wear the new Jaguars' uniform?

What we’re doing on Seahawks Draft Blog this week

On Thursday I’m going to do another Google Hangout during the first round. If you want to listen in and interact with fellow Seahawks fans, you can watch us on here or at Fieldgulls. It might not have the production value of ESPN or the NFL Network, but at least you won’t get overkill coverage of Manti Te’o (Kiper), hear why every prospect is “awesome” (Gruden), have to face anything that Bill Polian says (Polian), or get Adam Schefter tipping picks. Actually, all of those guys are on ESPN. So, errr, the NFL Network is too loud. But try and make it if you can.

On day two I’ll do a live blog via Cover it live where we can discuss the Seahawks picks as they happen. Day three will be an open thread. Both myself and Kip will chime in with pieces on the players drafted too. I hope you’ll join us.

Joeckel and Fisher #1 and #2?

Adam Schefter is reporting that there’s a “feeling” Luke Joeckel and Eric Fisher will be the two players drafted at #1 and #2 on Thursday. I have a couple of theories here.

Yesterday I put together a mock draft that included trades, with the Arizona Cardinals (#7) swapping picks with Oakland (#3) in order to draft Fisher. Funnily enough there’s been talk today of a possible ‘gentleman’s agreement’ between the teams that would see such a trade take place if one of the top two tackle’s gets by Jacksonville. There’s also been speculation that Oakland really wants to move down, but keep a position within the top seven picks.

Maybe the Jaguars want in on the action?

Today’s report from Schefter could just represent a decision within the teams front office that they’re going to take whichever tackle Kansas City snubs. I still find that difficult to take. They have a left tackle in Eugene Monroe. He’s not Walter Jones, but he’s not enough of an issue that you’d need to replace him. He is a free agent next year but why not just pay him? Thus avoiding the need to waste time fixing one of the few unbroken pieces of the Jaguars roster? This is a team, after all, that can quite accurately be described as ‘hopeless’.

If the intention is to draft Joeckel or Fisher to play right tackle, that’s a wasted pick in my view. It won’t significantly aid the offense. They’ll still have to address the lack of pass rush, the lack of a secondary and the lack of — most importantly — a quarterback they can really trust.

They might just grade Joeckel and Fisher so highly they feel obliged to take either one of them. Or perhaps, just maybe, they’re trying to muscle in on any possible deal to move down? If the Cardinals are serious, they might be willing to cough up their second round pick to tie down the long term future at left tackle. That’s the #38 overall selection. And if they’re willing to deal with Oakland, why not the Jags? This could be a classic calling of Arizona’s bluff. And if it worked, suddenly the Jaguars are picking #7 overall with the #33 and #38 picks to come. That’s how you rebuild a lousy roster.

It’s just a thought, but it wouldn’t surprise if the Jaguars were being a little devious here. Either that or we know who the top two guys are on Thursday. Assuming the Jags do take Joeckel or Fisher, we could be looking at a top five like this:

#1 Kansas City – Luke Joeckel
#2 Jacksonville – Eric Fisher
#3 Oakland – Sharrif Floyd
#4 Philadelphia – Lane Johnson
#5 Detroit – Ziggy Ansah

I maintain a nagging feeling that the Cardinals will move into the top five to get their tackle. Simply put, it makes too much sense not to. I’ve not represented that here.

Dion Jordan becomes the X-factor in this scenario. Does Chip Kelly take him at #4 over an offensive lineman? I’m not sure, because Lane Johnson is pretty much a perfect fit for his offense (as is Fisher — both athletic guys). I prefer Jordan as a LEO or 3-4 linebacker than a pure 4-3 end, so does that push Detroit to Ziggy Ansah instead?

At #6 I expect Cleveland to take Dee Milliner unless they can trade down. Arizona could select Jordan if he’s there at #7, but they’re also being heavily linked with Chance Warmack and Jonathan Cooper. Buffalo appear destined to go quarterback. The Jets at #9 are a legitimate option for Jordan. That might be his floor.

If he gets out of the top five, he could be a trade target. With the Atlanta Falcons considering a move up, Jordan, Milliner and Sheldon Richardson seem the most likely targets.

Tyrann Mathieu misses meetings

According to Jason La Canfora, the former LSU cornerback has been suffering with sickness and had to cancel two meetings with teams. La Canfora insinuates that for most players, that would be OK. But this is Tyrann Mathieu. The guy who needs to convince anyone who’ll listen that he’s a changed man.

For what it’s worth, he’s still given a day-two grade by La Canfora (who only refers to him by the tiresome ‘Honey Badger’ nickname). I have mixed views on this. Part of me thinks, ‘big deal’. Part of me also thinks, ‘I hate it when people refer to him as HB, or Honey, or Badger’. But then I think back to the one significant job interview I’ve had in my life. I’m not sure anything would’ve stopped me making it that day. I’ve had flu in the past, food poisoning, the usual things we all go through. Although it’s easy to sit here and say this without knowing the issue, I think I probably would’ve made sure I was at those meetings. I think most people would agree there.

Let’s say it’s food poisoning and Mathieu either vomits or soils himself in the meeting room. In most cases, that would clearly be a major negative. In this case, it’d probably be a great example of how badly he wants to prove he’s turning over a new leaf. We can analyse these things to the Nth degree sometimes. Maybe I just jumped the shark by referring to a man soiling himself in public as a draft positive. Even so, I do get a bad vibe on this one and that would impact my own grade on Mathieu. And yet nothing surprises me with this team and I wouldn’t be shocked if they were the side on day two to draft him. I don’t expect it, however.

Seahawks linked to Nick Kasa

The Colorado tight end is apparently interesting Seattle as a possible mid-round tight end option. Tony Pauline describes the interest as “heavy”. Take a look for yourself. Below you’ll find his tape vs Washington State and Arizona State:

A look at the Seahawks’ 2013 draft visit list (part III)

Monday, April 22nd, 2013

mmmm, Quessenberry pancakes

Continued from parts I and II

David Quessenberry

David Quessenberry was a left tackle and blindside protector.  It probably helps that Quessenberry blocked for David Fales- an outstanding quarterback- but I like him as a prospect and think he’s certainly worthy of being drafted.

Quessenberry can play with poor leverage at times and lacks an elite slide step.  That said, he has impressive core strength.  He anchors against the bullrush very well and is good for a few dominating run blocks a game through pure strength.  I’d put his intensity level in the “nasty” category.  He’s not as ramped up as Breno Giacomini or Luke Marquandt, but he does give very high effort and is a fighter in the run game.  He’s also got the kind of size (6’5″, 302) and skillset to be an ideal tackle/guard swingman, though I think Seattle is pretty happy with its current guard situation.

On tape Quessenberry doesn’t look especially quick, so I was surprised to learn that he was one of the combine’s better performers.  Out of 30 combine participants at offensive tackle, Quessenberry’s ranked:

Forty time:  6th.
Bench:  12th (tied)
Short shuttle:  2nd (0.01 away from 1st)
3-cone:  5th.
Broad jump:  3rd (tied)
Vertical jump:  7th

He also has 34⅜” long arms and was tied for having the largest hands in the combine group.

I don’t know where Seattle would draft him, but Quessenberry has 2nd round measurables and his tape does nothing to spoil that, at least not in my opinion.  If Seattle got him in the 5th round or later, I’d consider it a very good pickup, especially if Tom Cable feels good about Quessenberry’s chances to stick at tackle.

Sheldon Richardson

Another player that Seattle brought in before the Harvin trade.  Like Datone Jones, this visit is assuring because it shows that Seattle preferred faster 3-techs early in the draft.  In recent years the most successful NFL 3-techs usually displayed excellent speed coming out of college.

Eric Rogers

A tall receiver from a small school that is likely to go undrafted.  Officially 6’3″ at 206 pounds.  He ran a 4.50 forty at his pro day and posted a 37″ vertical.  Seattle continues to pursue Ricardo Lockette types.  It’s just a matter of time before they make a star out of one of them.

Michael Williams

A massive tight end, Williams was used mostly as a blocker for Alabama.  Williams is 6’6″, 278, and ran a very slow 5.19 forty at his pro-day.  Does Seattle view him as a long term project at tackle?  I wonder.

Tyler Wilson

For two years in a row, the best value at quarterback goes by the name Wilson.  I’d give Tyler Wilson a late 1st round grade based on his tape, but he could last into the 4th round after a snakebit senior season.  Had he declared as a junior, it’s possible he might have gone #8 overall instead of Ryan Tannehill or even #12 to Seattle.  I’m not a Ryan Nassib hater- but the nice things I would say about Nassib I’d also say about Wilson, and Wilson will most likely be drafted at least a round later than Nassib will.

Wilson has drawn some comparisons to Jay Cutler, which seemed more appropriate than ever during the 2012 season when Wilson could no longer contain his frustration with the team.

I see a lot of Matt Hasselbeck in Wilson’s game, and I’m not the first to make that comparison.  Both are cerebral quarterbacks that score with a series of good decisions rather than explosive big plays.  Both have better field mobility than their forty times would indicate and use that mobility to extend passing plays or take easy yards when the middle of the field is vacated.  Both have a cocky/brash attitude.  I think Wilson has a better arm and has fewer “wtf” moments.  His sloppy release and his Andy Dalton / Jay Cutler lack of emotional control are my only significant knocks on him (I consider both of those to be pretty minor).

While he’s not a classic read option quarterback, he’s got enough mobility that you may not have to scrap that wrinkle for him completely.  I think he’d make an excellent backup with good potential to trade for a profit down the road.  I think if he’s given a real opportunity he’ll be a starting quarterback somewhere in the NFL for at least a few seasons.

Dontra Peters

At 5’11⅜”, 201 pounds with only a 4.71 forty time, Peters seems like an unlikely fit for almost any position in the NFL.  A running back in 2011, Peters converted to corner in 2012 and had immediate success, albeit at a low level of competition.  I think I like Peters more as a running back as he can make guys miss with moves which helps make up for his lack of speed, though it appears scouts are more interested in him at corner.  To be fair, I don’t think Peters is as slow as his forty time indicates.  On tape he looks roughly as fast as Jonathan Banks.

Peters could appeal to Seattle as an undrafted free agent, as they aren’t scared off by corners that lack speed.

Craig Wilkins

When Pete talked about bringing in competition for his “USC backup crew”, it’s linebackers like Craig Wilkins who embody that idea perfectly.  Wilkins is 6’1″, 239, and ran a 4.59 at his pro day.  He’s a converted fullback.  He’s very similar as a prospect to Seahawks’ backup Allen Bradford, who has similar measurables and is a converted running back.  Wilkins would be one of our slower linebackers, but he’s one of the fastest linebackers in this draft and fights off blocks very well.

Perez Ashford

Ashford is the NIU teammate of fellow Seahawk visit Martel Moore.  That’s two NIU receivers on this list, for those counting at home.  Been following Jordan Lynch much, Seahawks?

If you want to learn more about Ashford, check out this article by the excellent Matt Waldman which highlights three of the draft’s most under-rated prospects (Ryan Swope is one of them.  He also says Christine Michael is “a back whose athleticism and running style is the spitting image of Ahman Green.”  You don’t say).  Ahem.  Waldman compares Perez Ashford’s game to Stedman Bailey’s.  High praise for a player who will probably be undrafted.

Ashford has solid NFL speed (4.50) and below average size (5’10”, 188), but has excellent jump ball skills, body control, and does very well after the catch.  He fits the Seahawks’ criteria very well.

Kyle Juszczyk

Who goes to Harvard to be a fullback?  That alone makes Kyle Juszczyk one of the draft’s more unique and memorable prospects.

Just watch the video above.  There is a lot of Gronk/Beast Mode in Juszczyk’s game.  At 6’1″ it’s unlikely he’d stick at tight end in the NFL, so a conversion to fullback full time seems the likely course for him to take.  Juszczyk’s appeal to the Seahawks is plainly stated, as Seattle has a 3rd running back spot open and appeared to be searching for RB/FB hybrids with unusual names last season (Vai Taua, Kregg Lumpkin).  Michael Robinson is 30 years old this season, and Seattle has no depth currently for fullback.

Mike Catapano

Another Ivy Leaguer. Catapano is a physical, high effort defensive end that reminds me of John Simon without Simon’s amazing arm combat.  He seems like a good fit for a classic 5-tech role in a 3-4 defense because his core strength and discipline are both excellent.  Seattle likes their Red Bryant types a little bigger than Catapano’s 271 pounds, but he has the strength and anchor of a bigger player and moves well.

Ryan Jensen

Another offensive tackle with some nastiness and some power.  I like his taste in music.

BJ Daniels

I’ve covered Daniels before.  He’s one of my favorite quarterbacks in the draft regardless of draft stock, and I think Seattle would fit him very well.  In my opinion he’s the second best pure read option quarterback in the draft after EJ Manuel.  He’s worth a draft pick, though they might get him in free agency.

Jeremy Harris

He’s a corner that stands 6’2⅜” (though he’s just 181 pounds) and ran a 4.48 at his pro-day.  Small school player.

Quinn Sharp

The second highest rated kicker at NFLDraftScout.com, Sharp made a 60 yard attempt at his pro-day with 21 NFL teams in attendance.

Brian Watkins

A 5’9″ corner from Oregon State.  Seattle’s interest in Watkins continues a 2013 trend that suggests they aren’t spooked by short defensive backs after all.  John Schneider specifically mentioned Antoine Winfield’s physicality when asked why he signed the undersized corner.  Is Watkins a similar story?  I have no idea.  The only “Brian Watkins” video on youtube is his sociology project on racism from last year.

Mock draft with trades & Mayock’s options at #56

Monday, April 22nd, 2013

Will Terron Armstead find a home in round one?

Mock draft with trades

We’ve done a few of these this year already. I’ve tried to base it on some of the information that’s emerged in the last 24-48 hours. My final mock draft will be published on Wednesday, without trades.

#1 Kansas City – Luke Joeckel
#2 Jacksonville – Dion Jordan
#3 Arizona (from Oakland) – Eric Fisher
#4 Philadelphia – Lane Johnson
#5 Detroit – Ziggy Ansah
#6 Cleveland – Dee Milliner
#7 Oakland (from Arizona) – Sharrif Floyd
#8 St. Louis (from Buffalo) – Tavon Austin
#9 New York Jets – Chance Warmack
#10 Tennessee – Jonathan Cooper
#11 San Diego – Star Lotulelei
#12 Miami – D.J. Fluker
#13 Atlanta (from New York Jets) – Sheldon Richardson
#14 Carolina – D.J. Hayden
#15 New Orleans – Barkevious Mingo
#16 Buffalo (from St. Louis) – Matt Barkley
#17 San Francisco (from Pittsburgh) – Datone Jones
#18 Dallas – Sylvester Williams
#19 New York Giants – Tank Carradine
#20 Chicago – Justin Pugh
#21 Cincinnati – Kenny Vaccaro
#22 St. Louis – Kyle Long
#23 Minnesota – Xavier Rhodes
#24 Indianapolis – Desmond Trufant
#25 Minnesota – Bjoern Werner
#26 Green Bay – Tyler Eifert
#27 Houston – Justin Hunter
#28 Detroit (from Denver) – Terron Armstead
#29 San Diego (from New England) – Menelik Watson
#30 New York Jets (from Atlanta) – Geno Smith
#31 Pittsburgh (from San Francisco) – Jarvis Jones
#32 Philadelphia (from Baltimore) – Blidi Wreh-Wilson

Here are the deals…

Arizona moves from #7 to #3, trading with Oakland
The Raiders are happy to move down, while the Cardinals leapfrog Philadelphia to get Eric Fisher.

St. Louis moves from #16 to #8, trading with Buffalo
The Rams need a weapon and probably won’t get Tavon Austin at #16. The Bills appear to be settling on one of Matt Barkley or Ryan Nassib. Both players should be available in the middle of the first round. A deal suits both parties.

Atlanta moves from #30 to #13, trading with the New York Jets
After dealing Darrelle Revis to the Buccs, New York immediately put the feelers out to trade down. The Falcons have been linked with a move up the board for the last week or so. I suspect they’ll consider it if Dion Jordan, Dee Milliner or Sheldon Richardson falls out of the top ten.

San Francisco moves from #31 to #17, trading with Pittsburgh
The 49ers are another team that has been linked with a possible first round trade. They have so many picks, it makes sense. Defensive line seems like the most likely target.

Detroit moves from #36 to #28, trading with Denver
The Broncos moved out of round one last year and history could repeat itself here. The Lions, having taken Ziggy Ansah in round one, move back into the first to get a left tackle.

San Diego moves from #45 to #28, trading with New England
The Chargers don’t give off an aggressive vibe, but they might have to be if they want to get a left tackle. It’s a vital need. They must do a better job protecting Philip Rivers.

Philadelphia moves from #35 to #32, trading with Baltimore
The Eagles move up, but not for a quarterback. Philly has a desperate need for a corner. They jump above Jacksonville and San Francisco to get their pick of the bunch. This could launch a run on the position at the top of round two.

Ten options at #56… according to Mike Mayock

Mike Mayock put his top-100 list on NFL.com over the last few days and I wanted to use it to look at options at #56. Of course, there’s no guarantee things will play out the way Mayock is projecting. In my mock above, one of the guys listed below is a first round pick. Mayock’s list doesn’t consider where teams are picking or need, it’s just a rankings piece.

At the same time, projecting options in the late second round is incredibly difficult because we don’t know how things are going to shake out. This at least gives us a platform. I’ve picked out ten players who are listed from #46 onwards. I used a ten pick extension, affording for the possibility of players falling. I’ve also listed four players I didn’t consider, simply because I don’t think they’ll be available at #56. Some would argue that’ll be the case for others included on the list but I did want to narrow it down.

1 – Johnthan Banks, CB Mississippi State (#48)
6-2 and 185lbs, Banks looked like a Seattle corner on tape. He’s got the height and length, but he’s also a fierce competitor. He has a nose for the ball and despite a lack of great speed (4.6’s) he’d add further quality depth to the secondary. He could also feature at safety — he was recruited to play the position before eventually making the switch to corner.

2 – Terron Armstead, T Arkansas Pine-Bluff (#61)
There’s every chance Armstead goes in the first round. If he doesn’t, it’ll be down to the level of competition he faced in college. He appears to have the skill set to play guard or tackle and you have to believe the Seahawks would want to tap into his upside. If he makes it to #56 he could be the pick. It’s a big ‘if’, though. In my mock above he’s long gone. Mayock only ranks him as a late second rounder, however.

3 – Jon Bostic, LB Florida (#65)
Bostic looked a lot more athletic than expected at the combine, running an official 4.61. Although he played inside for the Gators, he has the athletic qualities to play the WILL. Big-time leader and organiser on the field, great tackler. It’d be the kind of pick that has people surprised, but with hindsight kind of makes sense. If Mayock thinks he’s worth a grade in this range, maybe teams will agree?

4 – Khaseem Greene, LB Rutgers (#69)
A favourite for some time on this blog, no other linebacker in college football has enjoyed more personal success than Greene over the last two years. Elite production, off the charts character and the ability to force turnovers should make him a Seahawks-favourite too. Not as fast as they’d prefer, but he makes up for it in so many ways.

5 – Gavin Escobar, TE San Diego State (#76)
The only thing lacking in Escobar’s game is great speed, but he’s a giant receiver so it’s no surprise he doesn’t run in the 4.4’s. Terrific hands that absorb the football, he also runs crisp routes and finds the soft zone in coverage. Blocking can be inconsistent but he can work on that. It’s really down to whether they see past the lack of speed. Mayock offers a third round grade.

6 – William Gholston, DE Michigan State (#77)
The Seahawks seem to want length and size at defensive tackle. Gholston is 6-7 and 281lbs but could add more weight. I was never particularly enamoured with his college tape — he constantly looked like a player who could and probably should do more. Yet this would be a nice little project to see if they can turn him into a full-time interior lineman with pass-rushing upside. Maybe one for rounds 3-4 rather than at #56.

7 – Quinton Patton, WR Louisiana Tech (#78)
His attitude and personality just seems to scream, “Seahawks”. His tape is both electrifying and a little frustrating. He doesn’t make every grab, but he also makes some incredible plays and really was the defining figure in a high-production Louisiana Tech offense. There’s never anything wrong with stockpiling receivers and planning ahead. Mayock offers a conservative grade here.

8 – Christine Michael, RB Texas A&M (#87)
Recently visited with the Seahawks and seemed to enjoy himself. In fact, he virtually started campaigning on Twitter for the team to draft him. Great one-cut runner with superb balance. Looks like a NFL running back with star quality. Injury issues and falling out with the coaching staff at Texas A&M is a concern, however. Every team might think it’s a bit of a risk to take him in round two. Seattle is willing to take chances.

9 – Vance McDonald, TE Rice (#96)
Not one of my favourites. I didn’t see a natural receiver — he looked awkward catching the ball and most of his routes seemed to be wide receiver screens. Even so, he is the kind of athletic tight end I think they want to try and bring in to fit as a ‘Joker’. Whether he’s more of a third round option than a second, I’m not sure. Mayock has him as a fringe third or fourth rounder. I’d be surprised if he was taken at #56.

10 – Jesse Williams, DT Alabama (#97)
I was surprised to see Williams this low. Mayock’s given him a low third-round grade. For that reason, I kept him on this list despite a universal opinion he won’t last until even #56. He’s one-dimensional as a run stopper and he does tend to get banged up a little bit. However, Seattle first and foremost seems to want the interior lineman to play the run well. And they didn’t do that at times last year. Plugging in Williams at tackle will help.

Players not considered: Zach Ertz, Blidi Wreh-Wilson, Tank Carradine, Jamar Taylor

I will review the Sio Moore tape I have this evening. I wasn’t overly impressed as a first impression. I need to take a second look.

By the way, Kam Chancellor has agreed an extension with the Seahawks:

A press conference has been called for 2pm today. The first of several extensions that’ll be required over the coming years.

Small Schooler to monitor…

Monday, April 22nd, 2013

I’m always happy to draw attention to smaller school prospects looking to get their name out there. Keep an eye on Robert Fletcher (LB/S, Wingate University) during the process of this week.

He’s 6-4 and 230lbs with four years of starting experience — three of which he acted as a team captain. In 44 games he recorded 14 TFL’s, six interceptions, 14 PBUs, 20 passes defended and four forced fumbles.

All the best to Robert as he goes about trying to make his NFL dream a reality.

Chris Mortensen’s draft nuggets

Sunday, April 21st, 2013

Chris Mortensen put a few interesting tweets out there tonight. He’s a reliable enough source to sit up and take notice.

Is Chance Warmack a top-13 lock? Maybe so:

On Ryan Nassib at #8:

Jacksonville going offensive tackle? Could still be an option:

Ziggy Ansah at #5 sounds likely:

Cardinals to go offensive line? Seems obvious:

The two big revelations come in the first two tweets. First, Warmack not being available at #14 is an eye opener. He’s good, don’t get me wrong. But if both he and Jonathan Cooper are expected to go early, where do they fit? I’m struggling to find two teams who might go guard in the top-13 before Carolina picks. Tennessee is one possible destination. Would the Jets do it? San Diego? Having assumed for a couple of weeks that Warmack might fall, it might be time to reconsider.

Secondly, Ryan Nassib at #8. It just seems too obvious. Miami re-connected a college coach with his quarterback at #8 last year. Will it happen again? I’m still sceptical. Yet it would be a very ‘Buffalo’ type move. And a mistake, in my opinion. Others are saying it’s a two-horse race between Nassib and Matt Barkley:

Revis trade paves way for Jets to draft a quarterback

Sunday, April 21st, 2013

John Idzik has seen it all before. A quarterback earning a boat load of guaranteed cash, sitting on the bench holding a clipboard. It’s not unusual.

In his final season in Seattle he was part of a front office that signed Matt Flynn and gave him $10m. In return, they got a backup. The reason? A much cheaper rookie quarterback was simply superior. Both in the short and long term, it made sense to take the financial hit and move on.

History could be about to repeat itself.

By trading Darrelle Revis to the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, a similar situation could be unfolding. The deal will give the Jets at least the #13 overall pick on Thursday to go with the #9 selection. The Jets also own the seventh pick in round two. That’s a veritable bounty for a franchise that needs to get better, younger and cheaper.

People are already suggesting the Jets could use their two first round picks on a pass rusher and a replacement cornerback. I don’t buy that. What was the big problem last year? It was the titanic white elephant of an offense  that destroyed any chance the Jets had to be competitive. They ended the year a laughing stock.

Part of this was down to the way they handled the quarterback position. The Tim Tebow experiment was a disaster, Tony Sparano was an odd choice to replace Brian Schottenheimer and the whole plan served only to undermine Mark Sanchez, who’d just been re-signed to a hopelessly flawed extension. They had no serviceable running back and a dearth of talent at receiver. It was a shambles.

If that team wants to get back to relevance, the offense has to be the starting point. Rex Ryan can put a defense on the field that is respectable. That’s why he’s even in New York. Everything points to an offensive rebuild in the draft.

There are two schools of thinking when it comes to Sanchez. Most people have written him off. Others believe he’s been harshly treated. After all, he’s had nothing to work with in New York. No talented pass catchers. No running game. Nevertheless, it’s time for the Jets to move on. Giving him one last chance will simply add to the soap-opera style drama we’ve seen with this franchise the last two years. The guy was booed mercilessly in the Knicks-Celtics playoff game last night when he appeared on the big screen. The same thing will happen every time he throws a bad pass or makes a basic error. It’s passed the point of no return. Rightly or wrongly, you can’t live with that kind of atmosphere.

The Jets won’t be able to move him until next year when he becomes a free agent. A guaranteed salary of $8.25m secures his place in New York for one more season. But that doesn’t stop the Jets spending a high pick on a quarterback. The cheap cost of a rookie makes it palatable to draft a replacement at #9, #13 or #39. Look at the salaries of the players drafted in those positions last year:

#9 Luke Kuechly — 4-years, $12.58m

#13 Michael Floyd — 4-years $9.97m

#39 Janoris Jenkins — 4-years, $4.99m

Kuechly’s cap hit as a rookie in 2012 was $2.285m. That’s the kind of cost the Jets will face if they draft Sanchez’s replacement with the #9 pick. It’d be even cheaper if they waited until #13 or the top of the second round.

This has to happen. And having made that choice, they need to start bringing in some skill players to support the new quarterback. So what kind of scenario could we see?

Buffalo are picking one place above the Jets at #8. Until we hear differently, I expect the Bills to draft a quarterback with that slot. It could be Geno Smith. It could be someone else. Right now, I actually think it’ll be Matt Barkley. It’s a hunch. A hunch that a few people have. Maybe it’ll prove to be misguided, but I suspect the Bills will be one of the handful of teams that look beyond the physical limitations and see an effective game manager that can start quickly. I don’t think it’ll be a great spot for Barkley, but I can see it happening.

If they do take Barkley in that slot, the Jets should take Geno Smith. I can’t see him going to Jacksonville, Oakland or Cleveland. New York will get a shot if Buffalo passes. And they should pull the trigger.

Rather than following that up with a pass rusher or any other defensive player, they should race back to the podium and take Tavon Austin at #13. Instantly Smith gets a receiver he’s familiar with. The Jets get a difference maker, a guy who can put points on the board and make chunk yardage. Basically, something they’ve not had for a long time.

Immediately, there’s some kind of plan on offense. A spark. They can move beyond the Sanchez era. The fans in New York aren’t used to patience, but rest assured they’ll be willing to stomach growing pains for a Smith-Austin combo much more than another year of watching Mark Sanchez.

At #39, I’d continue the trend. Go after a running back (Eddie Lacy, Jonathan Franklin, Montee Ball, Christine Michael). Keep building that offense. If Lacy’s there it should be a no brainer. Geno Smith, Tavon Austin and Eddie Lacy. The Jets have an offense all of a sudden.

It basically comes down to these scenario’s for me:

If Geno Smith goes in the top eight – #9 Tavon Austin, #13 Jonathan Cooper/Chance Warmack, #39 Ryan Nassib/Matt Scott/Tyler Wilson

If Geno Smith is available — #9 Geno Smith, #13 Tavon Austin, #39 Eddie Lacy/Jonathan Franklin/Christine Michael

Sure, they’d still need a pass rusher in either scenario. They might have to coach someone up. And? Who’s to say a player like Corey Lemonier, Jamie Collins or John Simon wouldn’t be available in round three? There are still veteran pass rushers on the open market. They can also target cornerback replacements later, with Logan Ryan, Sanders Commings, Marc Anthony, Will Davis, Jordan Poyer and David Amerson providing plenty of mid-round depth in the secondary.

If they take Barkevious Mingo and D.J. Hayden at #9 and #13 they’ll be the same old Jets next year. That offense needs a revolution. Benching Sanchez and his gigantic guaranteed salary would be no different to the benching of Matt Flynn in Seattle. Costly, but necessary.

A look at the Seahawks’ 2013 draft visit list (part II)

Saturday, April 20th, 2013

Clever.

Continued from part I.

Stefan Charles

Unlike most NFL prospects, Stefan Charles did not play his college football in the United States.  He starred for the University of Regina and is a native born Canadian.  I briefly covered Stefan Charles in the not so distant past.  It’s hard to scout Charles from his available footage, but what I saw of him in drills he looked like a special athlete.  The way he moved I assumed he was 280 pounds.  He played at 324, and posted a mind-blowing 37″ vertical at that weight.  I bet his feet hurt.

Charles played for the same school that produced mid round defensive lineman Akiem Hicks last season.  And not that it has anything to this, but it’s also the same school that Jon Ryan played for.

I like Charles quite a bit, but I’m hesitant to make a declarative opinion on him as I’ve seen so little.  In terms of athleticism though, I think he’s probably one of the better options in this draft, at least on par with Montori Hughes, John Jenkins, and Brandon Williams, if not superior.  If Seattle selected Charles in the 3rd round, I would not be shocked.

Duke Williams

Williams was a minor star on the Nevada Wolf Pack defense the last couple seasons.  Despite being one of the lightest strong safeties in this draft (190 pounds or 203 pounds depending on who you ask), the 5’11” defender is among the biggest hitters.  I doubt he’d ever dominate physically as Kam Chancellor does, but there is a lot to like about a strong safety who can run in the 4.4s and play a physical brand of football.  Williams is fundamentally sound, explosive in small spaces, and a sure tackler.  Not only do I think he’s likely to start in the NFL if given a real opportunity, but I could even envision him as a starter in a future pro-bowl.  He’s undersized, but he has a lot of talent.  He also makes a lot of “splash” plays that get noticed by fans, and he’s got quite a bit of swagger to his game.

Williams would be a good pick in the middle rounds, though I think he’s perhaps more like Jeron Johnson than Kam Chancellor, though Williams is faster than both.

Kevin McDermott

Kevin McDermott is a longsnapper.  I could probably just stop there, but I’ll add one more thing:  don’t do a google image search for Kevin McDermott.  Unless you like that kind of thing.

Luke Batton

I was surprised when I saw Batton make the visit list.  His tape is pretty good, don’t get me wrong.  But at 5’10¾”, 228 pounds. He’s very undersized.  He also ran a 4.74, making him one of the slower linebackers in the draft.  It’s very tempting to compare Batton to Lofa Tatupu, who had similar measurables when he came out but made up for it with sound fundamental play, a burning intensity and natural leadership.  Batton seems like a Tim Ruskell type pick.

Batton probably won’t be drafted.  Perhaps Seattle views him as competition for Heath Farwell on special teams.  Maybe they want depth at middle linebacker?

Datone Jones

I have to assume they had this visit before trading for Percy Harvin.  All it really tells us is that Jones fit the profile at defensive tackle that Seattle was seeking at the time.  I like Datone Jones as he has great upside- the best defensive tackles are usually very fast- so this visit instills confidence that Seattle is looking in the right places on the defensive line.

Tyrann Mathieu

Aside from having an ongoing drug problem and having the fashion style of some generic bad guy from Streets of Rage or Final Fight, there are sane reasons why Seattle would use one of their team visits on the troubled defensive back.  Consider this interview he gave back in January.  It may not be entirely coherent, but you can sense a heart for the game in Mathieu’s words and a passion to pursue an NFL dream.  By bringing Mathieu in and talking to him face to face, they might get a better feel for whether he’s capable of growing out of his drug problems and immaturity.  Having Mathieu in doesn’t necessarily mean Seattle has interest; if anything it’s a means to gauge interest.

I consider myself neutral on Mathieu.  I never bought into his hype during his Heisman nominated 2011 season, but I didn’t jump on the hater bandwagon when his problems surfaced in 2012, either.

As a prospect, I think he’s probably worth a 4th round grade, at best.  Even during his 2011 season, most of his big plays were fumbles that slipped out inexplicably or bounced right into his hands.  Am I to believe that he has a talent for making offensive players play badly, or making the football bounce right into his hands?  He also had quite a few impact kick returns with what turned out to be so-so speed (Mathieu ran an official 4.50).  It’s unlikely that he’ll continue to be a difference maker in the return game against NFL teams, especially since I think his field speed looks slower than his combine forty would indicate.

You take away those big plays, which seemed more fortunate than forced, and you are left with a close to average defensive back, in my opinion.  A defensive back that stands just 5’8¾”.  Out of 60 defensive backs that attended the combine, only Greg Reid from Florida State measured shorter.  Seattle proved with the Antoine Winfield signing and their alleged interest in Robert Alford that height is not an absolute requirement, though Winfield plays with more physicality than most six foot corners do.

Mathieu relies on arm tackles too much, and while he plays physical, the lack of size and strength shows up on tape and I think could be an area where he gets exposed in the NFL.  There are also times when he seems to shy from contact on runners that are going full speed.  He’s nothing amazing in coverage, and looks like he’d get eaten alive against big receivers with jump ball skills.  Mathieu’s speed is actually below the median in this cornerback class, too.

Mathieu is not a terrible player.  He was a solid college player that was overhyped because he was involved in a lot of splashy big plays.  I guess my worry with Mathieu is that he’ll suffer from the NFL jump more than most players would because he’s already playing at his physical ceiling, and even at that level I’m not left seeing stars.  Slightly above average college players become career backups in the NFL unless they have remaining physical upside to tap into.

Even if I am wrong and Mathieu finds a way to improve his game enough to offset the jump to the NFL, he will almost certainly be a nickle corner only with a profile like his.  Remember how tiny Kelly Jennings seemed when covering big outside receivers?  Kelly Jennings was 5’11”.

Notice how I’ve barely talked about Mathieu’s drug problem?  This is why I wouldn’t be terribly shocked if Mathieu went undrafted.  Reputation may matter to fans and to awards ceremonies, but it doesn’t matter to scouts.  All scouts see is a good college player with very little untapped upside, a low NFL ceiling, and massive character risk.  If he’s drafted before the 4th round, I’d consider it an upset.

Brendan Melanophy

6’0¾”.  209 pounds.  4.56 in the forty.  Played strong safety.

I think the video above tells you all you need to know.  The video, a “highlight tape”, is dominated by special teams plays.  Fans that make highlight videos almost never include special teams plays, because fans usually don’t care about them.  So why are they in there?  It’s specifically to appeal to NFL franchises searching for a special teams ace.  As soon as I noticed how special teams heavy the video was, I immediately checked to see who posted the video.  It was posted by Brendan Melanophy.  Yup, it all makes sense.

I hope that didn’t sound condescending, because I like what Melanophy brings and I like the implied sense of humility that he’ll do what it takes to make it in the NFL.  Seattle has had one of the best special teams units every single year under Pete Carroll and a big reason for that is how he values special teams specialists on his roster.  Seattle also needs more roster churn at strong safety, and Melanophy has the size and physicality that Seattle likes in the defensive backfield.  I doubt Seattle would draft Brendan Melanophy, but he’d be a good get in undrafted free agency and bringing him in for a visit helps Seattle’s chances.

Latavius Murray

Similar to Jeremy Wright, Murray has a lot of length (meaning he has long legs), which I generally consider a drawback for a running back.  I wasn’t a big fan of David Wilson last year because his long legs robbed him of short area quickness despite having top shelf straight line speed.  Murray is a similar story.  In tight spaces he looks almost geriatric.  But on a swing pass with plenty of green ahead of him his speed becomes plainly evident.

I’m not a fan based on his tape, but it’s hard to argue with Seattle’s interest.  Murray is just a shade under 6’3″, weighing 223 pounds, and he ran a 4.38 at his pro-day.  He also posted a 36″ vertical and 10’6″ broad jump, both of which are excellent for his size.  He’d make an interesting receiver convert, if that’s the angle Seattle is taking.

Ryan Otten

Standing 6’5″ but just 230 pounds, Ryan Otten is probably the lightest draftable tight end in this draft class, with even featherweight Jordan Reed beating him by six pounds.  That probably explains why Otten has the physique of an Ed McCaffrey.  Otten did post a 4.64 forty time at his pro-day, making him one of the faster “tight ends” in this draft, though he’s probably more natural as a big receiver at this point.

If Seattle does view Otten as a tight end, it would hint towards them favoring a pure H-back.  If so, that would make Jordan Reed a player to keep a close eye on in rounds 2-4.

Quinton Patton

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=G23YpSkbn0s

A couple months back I watched every game compilation I could find of Patton, and to be honest, I thought he was the most vanilla receiver in this draft on tape.

But now I’m watching his highlight videos as due diligence, and I’m surprised by what I’m seeing.  Sure, highlight videos are not ideal as a scouting tool, but I’m seeing athleticism and eye popping displays that never showed themselves in the game compilations I watched.  Is it possible I just drew a bad sample?  Because his highlights (as well as his interviews) paint the picture of anything but a vanilla receiver.

I think Seattle’s interest in Patton is almost certainly legitimate, and I doubt they’d bring him in for a visit if they had a 4th round grade on him.  They’d be fortunate if Patton reached their selection in round two, and they’d have to know that.

Patton has good but not elite size (6’0, 204), and he has good but not great speed (4.53).  Patton does display excellent concentration skills and body control, and he has good moves after the catch which helps compensate for his ordinary speed, making him a comparable prospect to Keenan Allen.

Though on paper Patton profiles as an NFL average #2 receiver, players like Darrell Jackson and Greg Jennings have posted multiple 1000 yard seasons with near identical measurables and skill sets. Both Jackson and Jennings excelled in west coast offenses due to being great route runners with a strong grasp of the fundamentals.  Patton possesses those skills as well.

This leads me to the one thing I actually really like about Patton:  his intangibles.  His personality has a spark to it that reminds me of Richard Sherman.  Playfully cocksure.  The jump to the NFL is notoriously difficult; having confidence and self-belief can make a big difference in how far a prospect makes it.

His game tape may be bland, but his highlights impress and his personality makes me want to believe.  Though he lacks elite speed, and isn’t tall enough to be a Sidney Rice type, I’d say he definitely fits the John Schneider profile as he has very good yards after catch ability and has excellent possession receiver skills.  He also has the kind of playful yet driven attitude that fits in perfectly with Pete Carroll’s team dynamic.

Rumour mill circulating…

Saturday, April 20th, 2013

This is the most unpredictable draft I think we’ll see for a good few years. I suspect we’ll have the greatest disparity between teams on a pick-by-pick basis. And that’s leading to a lot of speculation.

There’s going to be very little consensus on a lot of these players and positional groups. There’s going to be a lot more picking for scheme or physical preference. And that’ll make virtually every pick unmissable this week.

It starts right at #1. I’m actually hoping we don’t see any leaks before Thursday. Contract negotiations usually begin in the week between the prospect likely to go first overall and the team picking in that spot. In every draft I’ve ever covered, we’ve known the guy going #1 weeks in advance. Not this year. It’d be pretty cool to see the top picked called out without the usual reveal before hand. We’ll see if that happens.

Tony Pauline is reporting today that some members of the Chiefs’ staff prefer Eric Fisher over Luke Joeckel. For me, Fisher has the higher ceiling. Yet he hasn’t faced anywhere near the same level of competition. Jason Smith had a similar amount of upside (#2 overall in 2009) and struggled to make the step up. Given the choice between the two, I go for Joeckel. Solid, dependable, you know what you’re going to get. He’s faced some of the best pass rushers in college football (SEC and Big-12) and excelled.

Bob McGinn’s pieces are fairly interesting, quoting scouts and usually complaining about every prospect under the sun.

The piece I’ve linked to above is basically yet another bashing of the quarterback market. I’ll say this — don’t assume Geno Smith is the first quarterback off the board. When we’re talking about personal preference, this is the position where it matters the most.

A case in point… from what I am led to believe (take that for what it’s worth) a lot of teams would’ve drafted Blaine Gabbert #1 overall in 2011 over Cam Newton (at least those who desperately needed a quarterback). I also believe one of the teams who preferred Gabbert over Newton was Seattle. With hindsight, nobody would second-guess Carolina’s pick. Yet in many other scenarios, Gabbert goes #1 two years ago.

In the same draft, Tennessee took Jake Locker #8 overall when a lot of other teams had him ranked way down in the mid-round range. I believe Washington would’ve loved to get Locker at #10, but rejected the chance to draft Gabbert as an alternative. And Minnesota liked the class enough to tick guys off and still take Christian Ponder at #12 — a player others didn’t rate anywhere near as highly.

That doesn’t mean this will happen all over again and we’ll see a host of quarterbacks flying off the board. But don’t be surprised if the order in which the quarterbacks are drafted contradicts what we’ve been hearing in the media for the last few weeks.

More than half the league might rank Matt Barkley in round two or lower. And he might still be a top ten pick on Thursday. He could be Buffalo’s guy. Do not be shocked. Yeah the cold weather. Blah blah. Ryan Nassib used to play for Doug Marrone. It’s a fair point. Some teams — and I include the Bills here — are going to see value in Barkley. His ability to start quickly, be an intelligent leader from the get-go and facilitate the playmakers in Buffalo. He’ll need more at receiver, but there will be options in round two and three. The Bills can become competitive in the AFC East quickly with solid quarterback play. I can see this happening.

Geno Smith might be the consensus top quarterback as McGinn’s study reports, but he might go lower than expected — just like Gabbert. And players like Nassib and E.J. Manuel — despite having limited ability on tape — might also find they go earlier than we expect, in the same way Ponder did two years ago.

Pick your poison. That’s what teams do. And if you think you’ve found the guy you can win with, you’re not worrying about a talking head in the media saying that same guy is a ‘fourth round pick’ or whatever silliness we’ve heard this off-season.

On defense, Tank Carradine had his work out today, as he continues to return from an ACL injury. Chris Mortensen has the details…

Other people have suggested he ran in the 4.9’s. There are mixed reports out there.

I’m not a huge fan of Carradine, unlike some others. He might prove to be one of those players who just has a natural knack of getting to the quarterback. Maybe. Yet I think he has a lot of ‘easy’ sacks on tape and I’m always sceptical of pass rushers out of Florida State. I’m not sure he or Bjoern Werner will go on to have great careers in the NFL.

Carradine tries to swipe away blockers and side step to the edge. He doesn’t mix it up or use a great speed rush and his hand-use could be better. I’d challenge my tackle to let him dip inside and run into traffic. Show him the inside route to the quarterback. I don’t think he has the speed to capitalise on that and could end up looking pretty pedestrian if you take away his swipe move. He doesn’t explode out of the blocks. He has got a good motor though and prototype size.

My top three at #56 remain the same for now:

1. Khaseem Greene

2. Quinton Patton

3. Christine Michael

However, this is assuming there’s going to be a rush on offensive and defensive tackles, limiting the options for Seattle. I’m going to re-watch some Sio Moore tape tonight. Of course, you never know who might fall or what the Seahawks are planning. I could just as easily see them going for a Vance McDonald — athletic, out-there, Seahawky. Only a few more days to wait and find out.

A look at the Seahawks’ 2013 draft visit list (part I)

Friday, April 19th, 2013
Martel Moore

Have you ever seen the back of a football, on weed?

According to Davis Hsu, Seattle met with 7 of their 10 eventual 2012 draft picks before the draft took place.  Here is an unofficial list of players Seattle has brought in for visits or met with so far in 2013 (special thanks to Scott Allen and Chris F):

Matt Scott, QB, Arizona
Jeremy Wright, RB, Louisville
Russell Shepard, WR, LSU
Martel Moore, WR, Northern Illinois
Aaron Mellette, WR, Elon
Tyrone Goard, WR, Eastern Kentucky
Rufus Johnson, DE, Tarleton State
Stefan Charles, DT, Regina
Duke Williams, S, Nevada
Kevin McDermott, LS, UCLA
Luke Batton, LB, Kent State
Datone Jones, DL, UCLA
Tyrann Mathieu, DB, LSU
Brendan Melanophy, DB, Fordham
Latavius Murray, RB, Central Florida
Ryan Otten, TE, San Jose State
Quinton Patton, WR, Louisiana Tech
David Quessenberry, OL, San Jose State
Sheldon Richardson, DL, Missouri
Eric Rogers, WR, Cal Lutheran
Michael Williams, TE, Alabama
Tyler Wilson, QB, Arkansas
Dontra Peters, CB, New Hampshire
Craig Wilkins, LB, Old Dominion
Perez Ashford, WR, Northern Illinois
Kyle Juszczyk, FB, Harvard
Mike Catapano, DE, Princeton
Ryan Jensen, OL, Colorado State
BJ Daniels, QB, South Florida
Jeremy Harris, CB, New Mexico State
Quinn Sharp, K/P, Oklahoma State
Brian Watkins, CB, Oregon State
Michael Brooks, DT, East Carolina
Ryan Robertson, QB, Central Washington
Justin Veltung, WR, Idaho
Zac Dysert, QB, Miami-Ohio
Anthony Watkins, SS, Oregon State
Greg Herd, WR, Eastern Washington
Semsi Tokolahi, DT, Washington
Justin Glenn, FS, Washington
Isaac Remington, DT, Oregon
Cooper Taylor, SS, Richmond
Christine Michael, RB, Texas A&M

Additional players who were approached by a Seahawks scout (that I know of):

Brice Butler, WR (CB), San Diego State
Denard Robinson, RB/WR, Michigan
Sylvester Williams, DT, NC State
Armonty Bryant, DE, East Central

That’s a pretty long list of names, and I’m sure there are many other players that Seattle met with that went unreported.  Overall, this list is mostly made up of players that are very likely to go undrafted, which is fairly typical as far as team visits go.  Teams prioritize projected undrafted free agents with visits so that they can build relationships which hopefully give them an edge when the signing frenzy begins after the draft concludes.

Of course, there are plenty of draftable names on this list too.  I won’t write a book on every one of them, but here are some quick thoughts as I rattle down the list:

Matt Scott:

I’ve been saying since last September (mostly at Seahawks.net) that Matt Scott was someone to keep an eye on.  He made a very strong impression on me immediately last season with his quickness, arm talent, and improvisational ability.  It’s true that in some ways he’s a little Colin Kaepernick mixed with a little Russell Wilson, but I feel a better expectation level might be something like Seneca Wallace or Aaron Brooks.

The tools are there, but he has some mental inconsistency and decision making issues.  I don’t know if that’s related to inexperience or if he’s just got a low ceiling as a decision maker.  Like Wallace and Brooks, Scott is a good improviser despite making dumb choices too often.  To be fair, it’s not ideal to judge a prospect from his first year as a full time starter.  Perhaps he can be coached into being a smarter player.

Scott doesn’t have a good frame for taking hits and was constantly injured last season.  He’s one of the toughest quarterback’s you’ll ever see, gutting through an entire season banged up, even puking on the sidelines before running back out there on one occasion.

Scott has a natural point guard at quarterback skillset, he has elite quickness and good speed.  He has excellent arm talent.  Yet he needs time to develop as he lacks experience.  He fits Seattle’s criteria about as perfectly as he can, so I’m not surprised at all to see the Seahawks bring him in for a workout.  Reports were that Scott nailed that workout in Seattle which helped elevate his stock with teams across the league.  Ultimately, I think Scott will leave the board before the Seahawks are comfortable drafting a backup quarterback.  However, should he last longer than expected the Seahawks could become significant players for his services.

Jeremy Wright:

All I’ve seen of Wright is what there was to glean from the Khaseem Greene video that Rob linked earlier this week.  Based on that, I’d say that he looks like a fringe NFL RB that could stick to the back end of a roster for a few years.  He not very elusive but has a lot of length and power.  He doesn’t dance behind the line of scrimmage- he just hits the hole and gets what he can.  The immediate comparison I thought of was Vick Ballard.  Ballard averaged just 3.9 yards per carry last season, but ended up being the Colts’ featured back anyway.  Seattle isn’t as desperate for a starting running back as Indy is, to say the least, so I think Wright would probably be more of a bubble player on our roster.

Russell Shepard:

You can never have too many players named Russell right?

Shepard is a terrific athlete who looks like Percy Harvin in the above highlight clip.  LSU lined him up at both running back and reciever to capitalize on his rare athleticism (4.5 forty at 6’1″, 38.5″ vertical jump) and for his ability to make tacklers miss.  Shepard never really broke into LSU’s offense as a full time player, though it’s not uncommon for LSU backups to end up NFL players.

What I find most interesting about Shepard is that apparently he was approached by six different teams asking if he could convert to defensive back despite never playing the position before.  Given that Seattle found great success with Stanford receiver convert Richard Sherman and has approached Brice Butler with the same proposal, it’s not unthinkable that Seattle could have been one of those six teams to view Shepard as a potential defensive back.

Martel Moore:

I used a goofy picture of Moore in the header and paired it with a Half Baked reference, but in all seriousness, his tape looks pretty good.  On a side note, NIU quarterback Jordan Lynch will probably persuade some interest from the Seahawks when he’s done at NIU.

Aaron Mellette:

I’m not surprised Mellette got a visit.  Being 6’3″ while running a 4.45 will get Seattle’s attention for their desired depth behind Sidney Rice.  He also has long arms and big hands.  His tape isn’t great, but Seattle isn’t afraid to gamble on coachable players with tools.

Tyrone Goard:

It’s not everyday you see a receiver who’s 6’7″.  Goard also ran his forty in the 4.5s.  He’s got a lot in common with Lavasier Tuinei, a guy Seattle brought in during undrafted free agency last year.

Rufus Johnson:

Another “man amongst boys” prospect from the lower divisions, similar to Armonty Bryant or Luke Marquandt.  Rufus Johnson is highly comparable to physical defensive ends with untapped upside such as Lavar Edwards, Joe Kruger, and Maliciah Goodman, though Johnson is likely to be drafted several rounds later than those guys, if he’s drafted at all.  Johnson also impresses in this interview posted on youtube.  It’s hard to project small school players, but there is a lot to like about Rufus Johnson.  I’m a fan.

to be continued…