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:
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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…