Are Seattle’s biggest needs on defense?

November 8th, 2012 | Written by Rob Staton

Seattle's offense continues to grow with Russell Wilson and Marshawn Lynch

When you think about it, there aren’t that many holes in Seattle’s offense. Sure, it was a difficult start to the year. That had to be expected breaking in a rookie quarterback. But now? Things look a lot more positive. And while improvements clearly can be made, I just wonder if this is a better group than we thought a few weeks ago?

The Seahawks finally have a possible quarterback of the future. Russell Wilson is growing into the NFL and looked superb against the Vikings last week. He’s nine games into his career and there’s no reason why he won’t continue to develop. Finding a starting quarterback in round three has become virtually impossible in the NFL. Seattle’s front office maybe found that ‘once in a generation’ diamond that everyone is looking for. Wilson is poised, he’s making good decisions, he’s accurate, he has the arm strength and the mobility. The one thing people said would be an issue – his height – isn’t proving to be an issue at all. These are exciting times.

Wide receiver
Perhaps the most talked about position in terms of pure need, but the Seahawks have pumped investment into this unit. One of the first moves the current regime made in 2010 was to draft Golden Tate in round two. They courted Brandon Marshall and Vincent Jackson before finally signing Sidney Rice to a $41m contract. They re-signed (then released) Mike Williams, and also re-signed Ben Obomanu. They pulled out all the stops to add Doug Baldwin in a competitive UDFA market. The signing of Rice and drafting of Tate both received favourable reviews by fans and media. Recently the pair have developed into key playmakers.

Tight end
While it’s very easy to concentrate on the superstar quality of Rob Gronkowski and Jimmy Graham, the truth is there aren’t many guys like that around. In a passing offense utilising a rookie quarterback and concentrating on the run, it shouldn’t be a big surprise that Zach Miller’s numbers aren’t up there with the leagues elite. Only four tight ends rank among the forty most productive receivers this year – Gronkowski (19), Jason Witten (23), Tony Gonzalez (32) and Owen Daniels (37). The quarterbacks throwing to that quartet? Brady, Romo, Ryan and Schaub. Miller’s reputation coming to Seattle is the catalyst for an underwhelming impression of his time here. It could be argued the front office did what they could to deliver a top-end player for the position with a $34m contract. It’s his misfortune that the signing coincided with integrating a rookie quarterback and a focus on the ground game. There’s no guarantee a first round pick or alternative free agent will upgrade this position. Miller’s lack of production is a system problem, not an individual problem. And maybe it’s blind faith, but I still believe Anthony McCoy has a bright future in the NFL.

Running back
Trading for Marshawn Lynch was a master-stroke by the front office. For minimal draft outlay, the Seahawks acquired one of the best running backs in the NFL. Lynch is vital to this team and Buffalo Bills fans will be wondering how such a useful asset was allowed to leave the team for such a bargain price. Consider that the Bills not only traded Lynch away, but spent a top-ten pick on another running back (C.J. Spiller) as part of the replacement plan. Drafting Robert Turbin was a necessary move this year to make sure the team isn’t caught out if Lynch misses time (see: Cleveland game last year). After re-signing Lynch to a big deal, this is an area of real long term strength for the Seahawks.

Offensive line
Not many teams can match the kind of investment Seattle is making in its offensive line. Since 2010 they’ve employed two big name coaches (Alex Gibbs and Tom Cable), spent two first round picks (Russell Okung, James Carpenter), added John Moffitt in round three and re-signed center Max Unger to a long extension. The rest of the line is made up of players familiar with the system or coaches. People continue to discuss the possibility of further investment here, but the best answer for further improvement is merely time on the field and consistency. The Seahawks have a better line than most people credit. The ground game continues to prosper and Wilson has barely been touched this year.

Overall,there’s no glaring weaknesses. Compare this to other teams in the NFC West – the Cardinals have major question marks at quarterback and have virtually no investment in their offensive line. Sure, they have a superstar at receiver and recently spent another first round pick on Michael Floyd. But the Cardinals lack a lot of key features needed for a consistent offense. St. Louis likewise needs to rebuild its offensive line and while they have a former #1 pick at quarterback, they’re scrambling around trying to find weapons for Sam Bradford. Seattle and San Francisco boast much healthier overall situations.

That’s not to say improvements cannot be made. You can always get better and the Seahawks should seriously consider ways to find another good receiver. Even so, there’s a lot to be positive about there. If Wilson continues to develop, you’ll see the numbers in the passing game increase – meaning better stats for Rice, Tate and Miller. By the end of the year, people may have a very different opinion of that trio. Miller is unlikely to see a projected salary of $11m in 2013 but there’s every possibility a compromise can be made. Don’t assume the Seahawks can suddenly find a better option at tight end.

And when you actually consider it, are the teams greatest remaining needs actually on the much talked-about defense? They lack a truly excellent three technique with the potential to play most downs. There’s room to upgrade the WILL linebacker position. You can never have too many good pass rushers or corner backs.

This is a team that’s going to be built on a tough defense that takes the ball away, a productive ground game and efficient play at quarterback. So what should the priority be if the offense continues its upward trend? Sidney Rice and co arrived in Seattle with the potential to be great. Russell Wilson oozes the potential to be great. Marshawn Lynch already is great. Maybe, just maybe, the biggest needs are on defense?

47 Responses to “Are Seattle’s biggest needs on defense?”

  1. Misfit74 says:


    I don’t see a huge need for a 3-tech, but it’s plausible. 3rd CB, 3rd S (FS and/or SS) though I like Jeron Johnson a lot, WLB (as you said), and, as always, more pass-rushers. Will Thurmond upgrade our current weakest link of 3rd CB (Trufant)? That might be a key piece to add next year if not already on roster.

    Still, adding another elite prospect at WR and TE could be pretty cool. I could also see more investment at RT, LG, RG.

  2. Brandon says:

    Seattle’s current issues at WR are the sort of hole that’s hard to appreciate until after it’s fixed. Sorta like me working so hard to defend Josh Wilson…yeah, he looked good from a depressing 2009 vantage point, but now I’m all like, “Oh wow, I guess we really could stand to improve back then, eh?”

    I think we’ll be saying that in 2013 after Seattle adds real speed and precision for our receiving corps. Other than an upper-tier #2 in Rice, an oft-injured-and-always-fragile-Baldwin, and the highly inconsistent Tate, we have nobody to move the chains. We need more playmakers. Kudos to Darell Bevell and Russell Wilson for making something out of what we have, but Wilson’s recent improvements should not be mistaken for our passing offense becoming playoff-worthy or durable. It will only take another wave of drops for everybody to get back on the “more receivers” bandwagon, and looking at our total lack of depth, it’s honestly hard to argue.

    • Rob Staton says:

      Worth noting though that of the bout of drops (San Fran game) Golden Tate had a bad night, the other drops came from a backup tight end who hasn’t featured since, Marshawn Lynch and Robert Turbin. I wouldn’t try to argue it’s an elite group or anything, but certainly I think it’s a group we assumed wasn’t very good but perhaps didn’t appreciate circumstance enough. Rice is actually making some good plays and becoming a more effective weapon – Tate is Tate and we still aren’t seeing a 100% Doug Baldwin. At least another receiver is required (talent plus depth) but I think on the whole the biggest needs may remain on defense. And it’s going to be a tough year to find a #1 receiver.

    • Kenny Sloth says:

      It’s not that we lack playmakers. It’s that we lack the Wes Welker-esque player who will win underneath and pick up the first down on a consistent basis. If Robert Woods falls to the 2nd, I’d love to have him. I haven’t seen many reliable hands like that this year. The big holes are Will and 3 tech. I’ve been saying this all year. They won’t want to pay both Jones and Branch.

    • This is a good analogy, though perhaps on accident.

      Josh Wilson really was a good corner for our zone coverage at the time. However, it was a system that was disastrous for Kelly Jennings and sub-optimal for Marcus Trufant. Basically our scheme made our talent (two 1sts and a 2nd) look like crap on the whole, despite having some talent back there.

      When Wilson moved on he has remained a solid starter, now with the Redskins, but he was probably at his best in Seattle because our team strongly emphasized his ballhawking skillset- giving up yards in exchange for chances at turnovers. Jim Mora was a bad coach, and even bad for our secondary, but his style was good for Josh Wilson.

      It’s a similar story for our offense. Our offense is at it’s best when it has as many rushing yards as passing yards. It’s a style that emphasizes first downs over points. This style wins games, but depreciates our passing counting stats. In terms of efficiency we have the 12th most efficient passing offense (football outsiders), but in total passing yards per game Seattle ranks dead last, 32nd.

      For that reason, expecting 100 yard receiving games or 1000 yard receiving seasons is not realistic. Sidney Rice is playing his best football, and is on pace for just 748 yards. The last time he played this well and stayed healthy and catching passes from a quality QB he had 1312 yards. It’s not Sidney’s fault- it’s the system. If we added the best WR in the NFL, it still wouldn’t change much.

      Now, I’m not blaming the system. You don’t need to throw for a gajillion yards to win games and Pete Carroll is proving that. If Seattle wants to win games with a possession offense and good defense, then it’s key that they have good possession WR corps. And they do. Rice is an excellent possession WR. Baldwin is a good possession WR. Tate is growing into a great possession WR. Seattle can always try to get better at WR, but adding a 1st round pick at WR probably won’t change a whole lot, just like how adding Nnamdi Asomugha didn’t help Philly’s zone defense turn the corner because zone defense is not designed to be stifling.

      Seattle should consider adding a WR if they feel he can give them a new wrinkle, but it doesn’t have to be a 1st round priority. Our team is set up very well for running a possession offense- it just won’t have sexy totals for fantasy GMs to drool over.

      • Stephan says:

        Excellent, excellent points

      • Attyla the Hawk says:

        Agreed Kip. I’ve been saying as much for some time. The value of a great WR is diminished by design here.

        I would point out though, that doesn’t mean a great WR doesn’t have value. Take the 90s Cowboys. They were dominated by the run. Aikman was not asked to throw a lot. Our design is virtually the exact same type of offense that they built.

        Michael Irvin still had value. Even though his impact on the game was lessened by Emmitt. Likewise, Jay Novacek was an absolutely key piece to that team’s success.

        Dallas’ genius was that they did have talent everywhere. They could play at whatever pace they needed to play. The pursuit of game changing ‘touchdown makers’ should never be called complete.

        As for the original piece. I would say this is probably simply a function of the previous years’ investments in the offense finally bearing fruit. One only needs to look at the transformation of Max Unger to appreciate that frequently on offense it takes longer to finally smooth the rough edges of play.

        I have never suffered the premise that you need a #1 receiver. The league is replete with examples where good to great QBs make mediocre receivers great. But rarely do elite WRs reciprocate. And when they do, they generally do so in the context of a largely mediocre season. The fact is, even today the best passing teams really have pretty mundane talent.

        The emergence and steady positive improvement of Russell Wilson is so incredibly tantalizing for us Seahawks fans. It’s like unexpectedly finding the big Christmas present hiding under the tree when you’ve opened all your little ones. His development and continued ascension will shed light on just what we really need to take the next step.

        I believe we need to continue to work on the defense if there aren’t great touchdown making options available to us. The absence of Jason Jones the last three weeks should be proof positive that a pass rushing 3 is absolutely vital to our success. Already at this early stage, I am more comfortable with this offense driving late to gain a lead in a fourth quarter, than I am giving this defense a lead to hold.

      • Brandon says:

        Pete may run a possession offense, but that doesn’t mean that he has to be content with a limited stable of receivers. It may reduce the draft need, sure. But our constant recycling has hinted to me that Pete isn’t satisfied. Mike Williams, Kris Durham, Ricardo Lockette, Braylon Edwards…he’s still looking for that elusive size/speed combination who will really pull away coverages and compete for balls. That’s a combination that’s unlikely to be available on Day Three.

        Wilson is doing a great job with a limited arsenal, but his breakout since Week 7, while real, has occurred against some terrible pass secondaries.

        • Rob Staton says:

          Brandon Coleman looks ideal for that ‘big but gets down field’ type of receiver I think PC likes. Sincerely hope he declares…

        • The way Seattle has handled the WR position is very similar to other areas of the team. I think when Pete Carroll talks about always competing, it may sound like a cliche to outsiders, but he truly believes in it. Seattle fixed the secondary with a shotgun approach, bringing in a deluge of free agents and late round picks. They fixed the QB position only after acquiring 6 other QBs (Whitehurst, Robinson, Losman, Tjack, Portis, and Flynn).

          Basically, Carroll is always on the hunt for interesting players. If he’s emphasizing competition at a spot, that does not necessarily mean he is unsatisfied with the starters. I just think he’s always looking to get better and get deeper.

          As far as getting great players on day 3, every year you will have players that fall through the cracks and our FO has been one of the best in the business at identifying them. I think that if WR ends up being a 1st round pick for us in 2013, it won’t be because of scarcity later in the draft or a desperate need at WR, but because they simply loved one of the WRs and he topped their board wherever our first pick ends up.

    • Belgaron says:


      This is not a fair assessment. The NFL is a violent place to work and even if Seattle drafted or signed a phenomenal talent next year, the new player could get just as banged up. Seattle’s big three receivers are all still improving in their stats as Wilson and the passing offense improves, all of their grades for the year are still to be determined and they could still exceed expectations when everything clicks.

      That’s not to say I wouldn’t draft another one if a great talent comes to them in the draft or free agency but all three starters we have now are very capable, skilled, and tough.

      • Brandon says:

        Baldwin is small and neither he nor Rice have the most durable frame in the world. Every time Baldwin gets up these days, he seems slower to do so.

  3. Hawksince77 says:


    Last year there were obvious needs: QB, pass rusher, MLB. All filled in the first 3 rounds and all starting (more or less). Back up to Lynch drafted in the 4th round. Check.

    What about this coming draft? If Jones/Branch are re-signed, wouldn’t that mean the return of every starter on offense and defense? If that’s so, aren’t we talking about upgrades at any position?

    For example, let’s say they draft Ogletree and start him over Hill. Would that make sense? Or if they draft a killer WR to start in Tate’s place.

    What I am getting at is this: why not take the most elite talent they can when they pick? Does it really matter if they can get a guy to start at RT, or 3-tech, or leo, or wherever. With the possible exception of drafting a guy in the first or second round destined to spend most of his career on the bench (QB, FS, LT for instance) why not target the top talent?

    • kenny says:

      I think that is exactly what they will do, but with an emphasis on touchdown makers. If a touchdown threat is there at WR then they will nab him. Same for a real takeaway threat on defense. As long as he has some real potential to change the game, that is what pc and js will look hard into. Sure they will look to upgrade if they can, but if the best guy is a potential elite slot or an above average X receiver, i think they would shoot for the slot guy. I also feel like they will be looking at 2 position playmakers. Most of our guys can be moved around, but we don’t have an X/Y receiver. We have tate as an X/slot guy though. We also might look for a joker TE that can move outside. We have evan moore right now but he can be upgraded. All in all though look out for serious playmakers instead of solid above average players this year.

  4. Bobby Cink says:

    Ultimately, I think it comes down to the salary issues with Miller and Rice, as well as possible contract extensions for Jason Jones and Leroy Hill. All of those issues should be resolved (whether we will keep the two offensive guys at their current or restructured salaries, or extend our two starting defensive players) by the time the draft rolls around. I pretty much expect the first and/or second round pick(s) to be spent on the players to replace and/or back up those four.

  5. AlaskaHawk says:

    We really need to continue to invest in the offense. Can anyone really be comfortable with an offensive line who’s best players have suffered through injuries each season? We simply cannot trust the left side to stay healthy. The right side is okay but can’t be trusted to block a really good defensive end. I watched Minnesota penetrate our line and blow up our running plays. I get the impression that if it weren’t for Marshawns efforts we wouldn’t have much of a running game. I guess we will find out when Turbin steps in -I’ll be rooting for him.

    Receiver wise I think we got three. As I watch the colts play, deep passes going to the speedy Avery, I wonder who will be our Avery? Who will be our quick option? It is obvious we need more receivers, we are carrying a bunch of maybes on our practice squad. Let’s just step up to the plate and draft a couple.

    It doesn’t really matter how much we paid in the past or where they were drafted. Any more than it matters that we have a 10 million dollar backup QB who has never played a regular fame for us. What matters is improving our offense to at least an average level. And of course regaining our elite defense.

    • Attyla the Hawk says:

      “Can anyone really be comfortable with an offensive line who’s best players have suffered through injuries each season? We simply cannot trust the left side to stay healthy. The right side is okay but can’t be trusted to block a really good defensive end. I watched Minnesota penetrate our line and blow up our running plays. I get the impression that if it weren’t for Marshawns efforts we wouldn’t have much of a running game. I guess we will find out when Turbin steps in -I’ll be rooting for him.”

      Kevin Williams is still an elite DT. But there were also multiple occasions where the O Line blew up the defense 4+ yards downfield before anyone even touched Lynch. In a 5 v 7 matchup, you are not going to win every 1 v 1 battle all the time.

      Alos, I don’t feel uncomfortable at all with the left side. Because it’s not resulting in drive crushing results. Our sack numbers are pretty low. It’s not all blocking. Wilson is becoming better at escaping pressure and distributing the ball before he gets the sack. He is already light years ahead of ‘deer in headlights’ Jackson who mentally went into a fetal position anytime the rush was barely imminent.

      Marshawn is a great back. No question. And his ability to gain yards after contact is elite. But it’s not indicative of o line problems either. Wilson has already demonstrated now for more than a month that he is capable of neutralizing a free oncoming rusher. He can account for the missed assignment more often than not.

      The o line is still improving. And I don’t think we’re ‘done’ with it. I do think we’re at a point now where we can afford the luxury of selecting development prospects late in rounds and let them develop low on the depth charts. The o line is more than functional at this point. Like every unit, it would benefit from an elite prospect to provide ‘top down’ depth. But it would have to be a pretty elite talent.

      It would be very interesting if a Cooper were to fall to us — what kind of choice would we make. Or if we end up with a chance on Chance. Last year, I felt like Decastro was never a possibility because we had real immediate liabilities we needed to address. I don’t feel that way at all today. In a year with very modest touchdown maker talent in the pool — does uber elite talent at positions of lesser need become an option?

      Who am I kidding. We’ll probably trade down a few times and still pick up guys that we would have considered taking had we stood pat. Given that the only first round pick we haven’t aggressively shopped was the one for Okung — I’d say it’s a good bet we’ll continue that.

  6. kevin mullen says:

    I hope this team starts drafting like Pittsburgh and Baltimore in the years to come, steadily investing in their defense through the draft and keeping a revolving door of young talent coming in. Though this year hasn’t been the same as the last decade for both of those teams but nonetheless Baltimore and Pittsburgh have held perennial top10 defenses. I hope this is the start of that.

  7. Misfit74 says:

    Another thing to consider is the age of Brandon Browner. Sure, he should be good for another couple season at minimum, but at what point do you draft replacements for future starters? Did we do that (at least in part) with Irvin/Clemons last year?

  8. Stuart says:

    Ideally we can pick up a true #1 WR in the draft or FA. Someone on here said Greg Jennings was a possibility. Does anyone know his contract status after this season? I believe we will make the playoffs this season but loose a close game on the road. The reason for the loss may come down to dropped passes…As much as I love our return man, he is getting long in the tooth in football years…When Baldwin is healthy all is good but he cannot stay healthy and when he is anything less than 100% healthy, he is not the same player.

    Like many posters on here I would be very happy grabbing an elite defensive player with our first pick. Alec Ogletree would be my top choice today but he will likely be gone. What defensive studs are likely to be available at our pick in the first round?

    • Belgaron says:

      If you go to Rotoworld, there is a link on every player that will tell you their contract status.

    • Misfit74 says:

      No way we sign a 30-something player to big money. Jennings is scheduled for UFA after this season. Jennings is also declining and becoming more injury-prone.

  9. Snoop Dogg says:

    An idea that I feel no one is considering is benching or trading Breno Giacomini in favor of drafting a falling luke joeckel or taylor lewan. I would not mind having a right tackle who is athletic like a left tackle and can block the elite athleticism of premiere pass rushers. I also realize that our line needs to develop chemistry, and that it will improve with time.

    Why not draft sheldon richardson? or star latuleti? If we could get a 300 lbs., 4.7 sec. speed man with potential like geno atkins I would be all for it! I would not mind the best of both worlds.

    If we draft a receiver, I think they go cordarrelle patterson or (much more attractive option) brandon coleman. Our pick will be a monster *media-opinion* reach as Pete Carroll loves to do.

  10. Darnell says:

    I’ve been thinking for awhile that we need some speedy inside guys on both sides of the ball. A jitterbug type slot WR and a pure inside CB.

    Maybe inquire to the Chiefs as they do their regime change about McCluster and Arenas.

  11. Wade says:

    I think Jones is the key. If they can’t bring him back then id say DT is the need. If he resigns then they should be able to draft BPA for a few diffrent positions. WR is certainly on that list but i don’t think we will be getting a #1 thats going to contribute next year unless we are trading up if there is even one in this draft. Curious to see what the FO could do in a situation like that though with no absolute need.

  12. STUFR says:

    I don’t disagree because I think a weak side LB and a pass rush DT will be high on the list this year. I don’t think that they will trump the big possession WR, TE and RT that we need also. It’s all about JS and his system of turnover. We will always have a need or two and depth needs every year. The beauty is that we don’t need anything really key, or half the team.

    • Attyla the Hawk says:

      possession WR (even with size) and RT talents are liberally sprinkled through the 2nd through 5th rounds. That’s generally why good teams don’t take those talents in the first. There is some difference in prospect quality between those ranges, but typically it’s not so much innate quality that a team cannot completely overcome and surpass with a prospect that just develops.

      LBs are often the same. Although typically the talent angle is more pronounced.

      rush 3 techs are definitely first round worthy. The talent disparity is usually pronounced. But just as importantly, it’s a critical team function that has the ability to compound it’s value with other good rush DTs. It’s like starting pitching. You can never have too much.

      TE is a position in transition. Even 5 years ago, talents like Gronkowski and Graham were not deemed first round worthy. I guarantee you if those players were available today they’d be in the top 20. TEs are becoming a lot like DTs. You can have more than one and make it a feature in your offense. Not only are the talents becoming so much better at the position, but the NFL game — although it moves glacially slow — is evolving. The use of no huddle 2 TE sets to force favorable mismatches is going to accelerate in this league. To do that, you have to have TEs that can line up outside at end as comfortably as operate out of the slot — as comfortably as lining up in line and blocking.

      The talent (physical and skillset) is exploding at the college level. Schemes are just beginning to catch up to the talent pool. Getting quality TEs is operating ahead of the curve. Like getting rangy safeties and 6’1″ or better corners with physical man to man skills. It’s a copycat league and defenses haven’t yet found a suitable counter to an amorphous 2 TE offense.

      TE and DT I can see in round one. Otherwise it would come down to just extremely special talent.

      • STUFR says:

        I can’t disagree. I think the right TE or DT would be the target in the 1st, or trade back for more toys if the quality isn’t there in what we need.
        The 32nd pick is really the 2nd round anyway.

  13. Soggyblogger says:

    Howard may start this week in replacement of Branch who moves to replace Bryant. Scruggs has already seen significant playing time even when all DLs are healthy. Not all defensive players develop in their first years. Mebane, Bryant and others have taken time to develop. So the question becomes how good are Howard and Scruggs? Might they mitigate the need to draft a DL? Same goes for Jeron Johnson and Lane. We already may have replacements on the team.

    As to WR, I think any prospect has to displace either Rice or Tate. Meaning move them down on the depth list. Few prospects have such talent. Unless we wait for later rounds. But first round? We need to know who is going to get resigned. Then we need our guidance from the FO. Until then, it’s just guessing. Good article, though.

    So many unanswered questions leaves any position ripe for the possibility of being drafted in the first round including QB. We might trade Flynn, and his rather expensive for a backup contract, before the draft. Not likely, but it’s possible.

  14. Snoop Dogg says:

    Rob Staton:

    Is there a possibility that a team really is discouraged by both Geno Smith and Matt Barkley and decides to trade for Matt Flynn? Maybe Kansas City? I wouldn’t mind drafting Jarvas Jones instead of Alec Ogletree.

    • Rob Staton says:

      Wishful thinking in my view. Flynn’s market was ice-cold when he was a free agent, he has just two NFL starts and lost a job he was expected to win to a rookie QB. His market is flat as a pancake and teams won’t want to inherit Seattle’s contract. The Seahawks would have to be prepared to get virtually nothing in return.

      • STUFR says:

        But after this year his contract is extremely team friendly, even as a backup. I would think that we can easily get a straight up 2nd or a 3rd and 4th. It might have to get creative, but he is a starter capable QB, who isn’t a complete risk and costs almost nothing. There are teams out there who will pay for that.

        • Rob Staton says:

          He’s not a starter capable QB, there is no evidence to suggest that. He’s been a career backup but for one year at LSU. And when he was available in free agency, nobody was interested. And he’s a year closer to 30. Nobody is going to pay even a third round pick for Matt Flynn. He’s lucky Seattle even offered the kind of deal that’ll set him up financially for life. Nobody else was ready to step in.

          • STUFR says:

            He is a starter capable QB, since he has started games in the NFL and played average to great in them. It is a small sample size and could be system driven, so I wouldn’t call him a starter. You may be right about his value, but I would be surprised if he doesn’t get picked up for something decent this off season.

            • Hawksince77 says:

              Perhaps Seattle has nothing to win come week 17, and allow Flynn to start the game and show off his value to the league.

              Why would Seattle do this (again, assuming they have nothing to lose):

              1 – by giving Flynn a chance to garner some interest in the league. It would be doing him a great favor.

              2 – by jacking up his trade value (assuming he plays well, which I expect he would).

              This seems like a win-win-win to me. Good for Flynn; good for Seattle; good for whoever trades for him, because he can start for an NFL team and do better than many of the guys starting today.

              • Rob Staton says:

                It’s an unlikely situation but I don’t see the big advantage here. Flynn had the ‘give him a chance’ game of a lifetime against the Lions last season and still generated barely any interest in free agency. I doubt beating the Rams at home is suddenly going to make a team think – ‘hey! we should trade for this guy!’. I’d rather Wilson get more reps and a positive end to the season.

                We should forget about getting anything like a 2nd rounder for Flynn. It’s not happening.

                • Hawksince77 says:

                  Rob, you are probably right, but every year is different. This past year, during the FA period, teams were looking at what might end up being a record-breaking QB draft. If you are right about next year’s being quite a bit weaker, the demand for starting QBs in FA may go way up.

                  Last year we also say Manning in FA. Are there any other big-name QBs available in FA next year? I am not aware of anyone, but that doesn’t mean there won’t be – just not sure who it would be.

                  Finally, the demand for starting QBs next year will be significant, just looking at some teams this year.

                  So it’s just possible, given the different circumstances, that Seattle can swing a decent trade for the guy, and the same chance he gets to start for an NFL team. As you point out, he’s not getting any younger. It better be sooner rather than later.

                • Hawksince77 says:

                  KC, the Jags, maybe Oakland, Minnisota perhaps, the Jets, the Bills, the Cards, the Eagles – that’s 8 teams that might be looking to upgrade at the starting QB position. How many starting-caliber QBs are there in the draft?

                  And this is not counting teams that might be looking to draft upgrades for the future: Dallas, Denver, New England (unless they really like Mallett), Pittsburgh, Cleveland, the Saints, any of which might draft a QB in the first round if say, Barkley falls to them (kind of like what GB did with Rodgers while Favre was still the starter).

                  The latter possibility makes it even more problematic for teams wanting a better starting QB, and I would assert that Flynn might be a decent upgrade over several of them.

                  • Rob Staton says:

                    Again we’re assuming the league views Flynn as a ‘starter caliber’ quarterback. But for one year at LSU, he’s been a backup. His free agent market was ice-cold. His old coach in Green Bay didn’t want him in Miami. He’s since been paid $10m guaranteed by a QB needy team and couldn’t beat out a third round rookie. He’s also not getting any younger. It is purely wishful thinking to expect any team to suddenly decide – “you know that quarterback who was available for free last off-season? Let’s trade a high pick for him.” Flynn just isn’t all that. Jacksonville signed Chad Henne instead, Buffalo aren’t swapping Fitzgerald for Flynn (they’re the same player), Oakland might as well stay with Palmer, Philly might as well go with Nick Foles and Flynn isn’t an Andy Reid QB (if Reid keeps his job), Arizona aren’t going to pay Seattle for a backup QB. That leaves KC – a team who has suffered through mediocre QB play for years and most recently busted on a vaunted backup QB who they spent a R2 pick on.

            • Hawksince77 says:

              And heck, even if the move is made to benefit Seattle and Flynn, he probably wins the game anyway.

              Seattle could always use more draft capital, but I wouldn’t trade Flynn away for anything lower than a second round pick, as I personally consider a 3rd round pick (the potential opportunity cost for not trading Flynn) acceptable for an excellent back-up QB.

              But if Seattle could jump-start Flynn’s trade value somewhere into the first 2 rounds, that would be great.

              For example, lets say that KC grades the top college QBs outside the top 15 (like Rob argued might happen). They have the top pick (or a top-3 pick) in the draft, and think that’s too high for Barkley, or whoever. At the same time, they realize the top QBs will be gone by round two, so they trade their second round pick to Seattle (really almost a late first) for Flynn and use the top pick on somebody they value at the level.

              Everybody wins.

  15. 1sthill says:

    Rob, I think you overvalue Tate, Zach Miller, and Anthony McCoy. Tate is very inconsistent and Miller was overrated when he with the Raiders. Miller has had his share of dropped passes since he has been with us and he has to be the NFL’s slowest starting TE. Miller is a very good blocker, but as a receiving TE I would rank him as below average at this point of his career. He made one great catch in the two years he has been with us…it’s about time. Anthony McCoy is another inconsistent player, he has his share of dropped passes. WR and TE have to be upgraded in the off-season, with either a 1st round guy or a good free agent.

    • Rob Staton says:

      Miller #32 in the league for targets among tight ends. He has less targets than Kendricks in St. Louis. He can only work with the role he’s given.

  16. A. Simmons says:

    I’m with Rob. I want a stud 3 tech interior pass rusher. I think that puts this defense over the top because we’ll be able to consistently get pressure with the front four. That will allow us to scheme interesting coverage and get turnovers.

    Or Chance Warmack if he drops. That guy looks born to play offensive guard. Even his name is a like a combining war and mack truck. You can always use a guy like that.

    • Snoop Dogg says:

      I am totally with you at wanting a 3 tech stud pass rusher! My only question for you would be then what do you want to do with Greg Scruggs? (My personal opinion is that he is then the heir to Red Bryants position, except a better pass rusher)

      Would you really want Chance Warmack? I feel like we need a right tackle more.

  17. A. Simmons says:

    Russell Wilson seems to handle pressure form his right fine. He needs a clean pocket. Chance would keep that pocket clean and smash huge holes for Marshawn. I like winning in the trenches. We have some pretty tough defensive lineman in our division, be nice to have someone able to match them one on one.

    Scruggs is too small to replace Red. Scruggs is 285 lbs. He’s a rotational three tech. I want a three tech pass rusher that is more like Warren Sapp. In on every down. Good against the run and pass. Very little rotation needed. Right now teams are audibling against us when we bring in a pass rush line featuring smaller rushers like Scruggs on the field. Need a to get our defensive line so we need very few substitutions other than to rest players. I’d like to see some high quality defensive line talent added to the team. Get that defensive line to the point it absolutely destroys weak or average offensive lines and makes strong offensive lines look average or worse.