Assessing the D-line options in the 2018 draft

March 21st, 2018 | Written by Rob Staton

The Seahawks are thin on the defensive line. Michael Bennett is gone, Cliff Avril might be going. Sheldon Richardson is in Minnesota and there’s no news about Malik McDowell’s future.

They were able to re-sign Dion Jordan as a restricted free agent (as expected) but no other moves have been made. Simply put, they need to bolster their rotation and add pass rushers.

The options early in the draft aren’t great. That’s not a problem. The Seahawks probably need to focus on their running game anyway. Thankfully there are possible targets later on.

Crucially the options are better at defensive tackle than EDGE. It’s likely one of the reasons, alongside money and culture change, that the Seahawks appear to be showing minimal (if any) interest in Ndamukong Suh.

Senior Bowl review

This week I went back and watched some of the Senior Bowl practises (OL vs DL). NC State’s B.J. Hill and Justin Jones just flat out dominated in the 1v1’s. Both players consistently drove offensive linemen 4-5 yards into the backfield. Power, leverage, great hand placement.

They looked like Alabama linemen in Mobile. They were just bigger and more physical than any one else. They stood out. I’m not sure how easy it’d be to acquire both (especially with multiple needs and limited picks) but Seattle’s interior D-line rotation would be a force. Naz Jones, Jarran Reed, B.J. Hill and Justin Jones would be a quartet of nasty, physical linemen.

If there’s any way at all to get these two, it’d be a huge boost for Seattle’s D-line rotation. Hill in particular just looks like a force. It won’t be a surprise if he goes in the second or third round range.

On a separate note — while re-watching the day-three Senior Bowl practise — Will Hernandez struggled a bit. He was beaten on a B-gap rush thanks to suspect footwork (heavy feet) and then struggled to handle Kemoko Turay rushing from the inside. Turay jolted him backwards and then tried a neat pull-push move. All Hernandez could do was grab his jersey. It would’ve been a holding penalty in a game. It was a bit of a surprise to see Hernandez toil against a smaller speed rusher working inside.

Ohio State’s Tyquan Lewis had a great Senior Bowl and that showed up in the practise re-watch. He dominated Jamil Demby on one snap working at defensive end. He was equally comfortable rushing the left or right side and had a great rep against Brian O’Neil too, just dominated him.

Both Lewis and team mate Jalyn Holmes had to share reps in a heavy D-line rotation for the Buckeye’s. Don’t sleep on either player. Lewis is an exceptional athlete:

Andrew Brown at Virginia stood out on the Senior Bowl re-watch too. It won’t be a shock if he goes in round two or three and B.J. Hill isn’t far behind. There was one snap where Brown jumped offside and tripped up. He suddenly flipped back up to the turf and got back into position. It was an impressive show of athleticism at 296lbs.

He’s really quick off the snap:

He also plays like his hair is on fair. There are some general technique things to work on. Sometimes Brown gets a little high and loses leverage. It’s coachable.

If Hill and Jones are just nasty and rich in attitude, Brown has a none-stop motor and plus athleticism/quickness.

What range are they going to go in?

NFL.com’s draft tracker (put together by Lance Zierlein) currently lists the players in the following range:

B.J. Hill — R4-5
Tyquan Lewis — R5-6
Justin Jones — R6
Andrew Brown — R6-7

I’m pretty sure all four will go earlier than projected. Much earlier in some cases (Hill, Brown). If they were all available on day three it’d be a fantastic opportunity to really bolster the D-line depth and it might be one of the reasons why they haven’t really added anyone in free agency.

Do they actually fit the Seahawks?

Yes. As noted in our combine preview, the Seahawks like length and agility. They haven’t drafted a D-liner with sub-33 inch arms. They’ve often drafted players that performed well in the short shuttle, such as Quinton Jefferson (4.37), Jordan Hill (4.51), Jaye Howard (4.47) and Malik McDowell (4.53).

How did the four players above measure and test?

B.J. Hill — 33 inch arms, 4.53 short shuttle
Tyquan Lewis — 34 inch arms, DNP
Justin Jones — 33.5 inch arms, 4.74 short shuttle
Andrew Brown — 34.5 inch arms, 4.48 short shuttle

Hill and Brown in particular stand out here. They’re also the two most likely to go earlier than expected (possibly rounds 2-3).

Jones didn’t actually perform that well in the short shuttle. However, the attitude and way he plays might still appeal to the Seahawks. Naz Jones ran a 4.63 short shuttle so they’re not tied to the 4.4 or 4.5 range.

Lewis didn’t do the short shuttle or many of the combine drills due to illness. He did do the vertical (35.5 inches) and broad (10-2) and tested very well in both jumps. At the Nike SPARQ combine he ran a 4.41 short shuttle.

Two of Lewis’ team mates are worth monitoring too. Sam Hubbard ran a 4.32 short shuttle and had the best three-cone among defensive linemen (6.84). He has 33 inch arms and is a pure 4-3 defensive end with some Patrick Kerney level upside. Jalyn Holmes is 6-5 and 283lbs with 34 inch arms. He didn’t do the short shuttle but ran a superb 1.67 10-yard split for his size.

Ohio State and NC State have some great options to fill out a defensive line in this draft class. They might need to fill out their day two board to have a shot at B.J. Hill or Andrew Brown (plus possibly Jalyn Holmes) but the likes of Lewis and Jones might be there on day three.

There are options here for the Seahawks.

What about EDGE/speed rushers?

It might be difficult to find them in this draft. There are only a handful.

We know the Seahawks like 1.5 10-yard splits from the EDGE. They’ve taken freaky, long, high-ceiling athletes to play D-line. Bruce Irvin, Frank Clark and Malik McDowell were all physical freaks. They’re not going to settle on an average athlete here. They’re going to look for someone with special traits.

Only two pure EDGE rushers ran a 1.5 10-yard split at the combine — Harold Landry (1.59) and Josh Sweat (1.55). That was a bit disappointing. Two SAM/LEO prospects also ran in the 1.5’s (Leon Jacobs and Lorenzo Carter).

The likes of Landry, Hubbard and USC’s Rasheem Green might go a bit too early for Seattle. It’s also questionable whether they’re truly special enough in the way Irvin, Clark and McDowell stood out.

Josh Sweat on the other hand could be exactly the type of player they’re looking for.

It’s not a surprise they’re keeping an eye on him. There aren’t many human beings on the planet with this type of physical profile:

Height: 6-5
Weight: 251lbs
Arm length: 34.5 inches
Forty: 4.53
10-yard: 1.55
Vertical: 39.5
Broad: 10-4
Short shuttle: 4.28

That’s a freakish looking combination of size, length, speed, explosion and agility. If they’re looking for high-upside with rare traits, Sweat’s your guy.

According to Tony Pauline, the Seahawks interviewed Sweat after his workout.

On tape he can be a little frustrating at times. He’s not necessarily the high-intensity player you see with B.J. Hill, Justin Jones and Andrew Brown. He has an injury history too including a severe knee injury in high school and a meniscus tear in 2016.

The feeling is Sweat will go in round two based on upside and the lack of alternatives in this class. If the Seahawks were going to consider taking him, they’d likely need to acquire multiple picks in that range. Quite aside from their other needs (running game) it’d be quite the gamble to take a chance on Sweat staying healthy.

An alternative could be Rutgers’ Kemoko Turay. He also has some of the size (6-5, 253lbs) and length (33.5 inch arms) they like. He didn’t do any of the agility testing at the combine after injuring a hamstring running the forty. He managed a 1.62 10-yard split. Turay really impressed at the Senior Bowl and looked twitchy and capable of playing some SAM/LEO as well as EDGE.

Reviewing the options

In the near future I’m going to put together a ‘targets list’ that we can update as the process goes along. This will include any VMAC visitors, players they’ve met with or players that fit certain physical ideals.

On the D-line I’ll be including B.J. Hill, Andrew Brown, Tyquan Lewis, Jalyn Holmes, Justin Jones, Josh Sweat and Kemoko Turay.

It might be frustrating for fans at the moment watching the Rams flirt with Ndamukong Suh while other teams make bold moves in free agency. I would stress the need to be patient. This isn’t a loaded draft class rich in legit first round prospects. It might be the perfect draft for the Seahawks though if they want to fix the running game and re-make the defense.

The only position they might struggle to add is at cornerback. There are some options that fit their profile but not many. Re-signing Byron Maxwell could be pretty important.

Quick note on the USC pro-day

Ronald Jones II didn’t do a full workout today. According to Tony Pauline he’s only at 70% health after recently hurting his hamstring. The belief is he will conduct a workout some time in early April.

We’ve been saying it for a few months now — but keep an eye on RoJo for the Seahawks. He’s a special talent, the kind Seattle has added in the past. He’s an extremely physical, tough, aggressive running back with explosive traits and incredible speed/suddenness. He’s a playmaker in the mould of Jamaal Charles and he could easily end up being Seattle’s first pick in this draft. For more on Jones II check out these articles here and here.

Defensive end Rasheem Green did the bench press today, managing 23 reps. It means his TEF score is now confirmed as a 3.20.

Sam Darnold received mixed reviews for his throwing performance. None of the quarterback have really separated so far. I think it’ll be between Josh Allen and Darnold to go first overall, then the Giants will have to make a decision on whether to go quarterback or Saquon Barkley. One way or another we’ll probably see three QB’s off the board in the top four plus Barkley.

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163 Responses to “Assessing the D-line options in the 2018 draft”

  1. SoCal12 says:

    Think Rojo falls because of the injury? Would be nice to pick him up sometime in the second round if we can get a pick there.

    • Rob Staton says:

      I don’t think he’ll fall much at all to be honest. Minor issue. It wouldn’t surprise me at all if he went top-25.

      • CHawk Talker Eric says:

        I’ve been toying with the possibility of a JAX trade for ET and using #29 on RoJo. But I’m not sure he lasts that long!

    • AlaskaHawk says:

      This will seem incredibly nit picky. But when these athletes can’t warm up properly for a couple runs and pull a hamstring – doesn’t it make you wonder what sort of longevity they will have when they are getting tackled 20 times a game?

      • Rob Staton says:

        Alaska — about 30 players hurt their hamstring at the combine while running the forty. Maybe more.

        Vita Vea, Kemoko Turay, Ronald Jones II to name just three.

        Something wasn’t right at the combine this year. There was a reason for all the hamstring injuries.

        • AlaskaHawk says:

          Makes you wonder about their off season training? When they show up at camp 20 pounds overweight and pull a hamstring = it won’t go well. It’s a bit surprising to me considering all the guys I know that are training for runs or triathalons, and they aren’t pulling their hamstrings.

          • Rob Staton says:

            I wouldn’t worry about it Alaska. These players are doing three long days of medical checks, interviews, meetings, media work and then a full workout on live TV in the biggest job interview of their lives. Not to mention the way these guys train in comparison to normal folk. The combine and the NFL puts too much intense pressure on these players, asks way too much of them over four days and it’s no surprise we saw as many injuries as we saw this year. It’s not about bad preparation or being overweight. It’s all about the ridiculous schedule.

  2. red says:

    I would not mind if Seattle could find Derrick Nnadi if they could add a second or third rd pick. Seems for a guy who has been on the radar for awhile has gone kind of cold because he had an average combine.

  3. Aaron says:

    Thoughts Rob on Derrick Nnadi? Looks like a NT in the mold of Mebane to me.

    • Misfit74 says:

      In the 5th,maybe

    • Rob Staton says:

      Really liked him in 2016. He was less impactful without DeMarcus Walker but FSU had a down year anyway in 2017. There is so much potential with Nnadi and I like the Mebane comparison. If he’s there in the middle rounds he’d be a steal. Another one to monitor for sure.

  4. Nick says:

    I have a feeling that with the Fluker signing we see OL drop off as a priority. If they like the depth of the OG class (which they will) it would make more sense to tap into the thin top layer of DEs. Our depth on the D line right now is woeful. It’s scary to look at in fact!

    DE/RB in the early rounds seems very plausible to me.

    • Nick says:

      All of this depends, IMO, if they think Pocic is a starting OG.

    • Nick says:

      Landry at 18 could work…if they trade Earl.

      • Rob Staton says:

        Landry has some quickness and bend rushing the arc but he’s just so underwhelming at times too. Bit predictable and doesn’t have much of a counter. Nowhere near the athlete Bruce or Vic Beasley are. Not as physical either. A player who I could imagine having a really nice pro-career but not sure I’d want to be the one bringing him in to develop.

    • cha says:

      “Our depth on the D line right now is woeful. It’s scary to look at in fact!”

      The Hawks are masters at bringing in low-cost DL’s from different avenues. McDaniel, Kevin Williams, Jordan, McDonald, etc.

      • Nick says:

        Yep, totally true. But you can never have enough pass rushers. And right now we are dangerously thin in that regard.

        • D-OZ says:

          We are dangerously thin @ 3 tech. There are some interesting options in day 2 and early day 3… especially @ the LEO position.

    • Aaron says:

      If we stay at 18 then maybe…MAYBE we pick a stud DE. However, what DE out there is worth the 18th pick? Chubb is long gone. Davenport is a great athlete but raw fundamentally. Arden Key has a lot of red flags that concern me because of the Malik situation last year. That’s the first round worthy DEs imo. I would rather trade down into the sweet spot in rounds 2 and 3. Hawks have a track record of solid DT and DE FA pickups. They’re looking at a good amount of them right now. We probably need two DTs and three DEs. We’ve got Clark, Jordan, and Mingo at DE (Mingo in nickel is likely a DE, SAM/LEO in base). We’ve got Reed, Naz, and Q Jeff at DT. Maybe the Hawks zig instead of zag again like last year (i.e. pick DL with first pick instead of consensus back then of OL or DB). My priorities are LG, RB, LB, TE, DE, DT, DB.

    • Rob Staton says:

      If they don’t trade Earl they’re going to have to pick one of RB or OL more than likely. Teams are expecting a RB rush and the good ones to go before pick #45. The Redskins are already talking about it. They feel the RB value isn’t going to fall well for them — that #13 is too early and their R2 pick is too late. Expect them to do some moving around to get a runner.

      I think we could see 6-8 running backs off the board in the top-50 easily.

      So with no Earl trade, you’re taking one of the top guards or one of the top runners. And considering they’ve signed Fluker and only drafted Pocic in R2 a year ago, they might be more inclined to go with a runner like Ronald Jones II.

  5. Misfit74 says:

    Hurst, Guice, Wynn, Sweat, Hernandez, Chubb are some of my favorite potential Seahawks targets.

    I’ve been keen on Sweat for awhile now, as he does look just like the kind of player our team would spend early draft capital on be it 18 or after a trade down. Similary how I mocked Bruce Irvin to Seattle way back when (2nd round, though), I think we could take Sweat as early as 18.

    We’re always going to invest heavily in the D-line and Sweat has great tools. Hurst would be the best 3tech we could hope for but lasting until 18 might be a pipe dream. Love Hurst stepping into Sheldon Richardson’s old role.

    Big question I have: does anyone think the team will break trend and take a CB earlier than round 3?

    I’m intrigued by I.Oliver.

    • Misfit74 says:

      I forgot Connor Williams. I have to think he’d be on our short list for OG or OT

    • Misfit74 says:

      Harold Landry is another edge that if he makes it near 18…

      • Volume12 says:

        Landy is also a guy that fits their ‘scouting the body of work.’ H

        Had a huge year in 2016, production took a dip this year, and then combine that with his athleticism and build, he’s absolutely a guy they could take at 18 or in the 1st somewhere.

        • Rob Staton says:

          Couple of things though — he’s a shade under 33 inch arms. Only a shade, but worth noting given their draft history. Also ran only a 4.64 which is a fair bit slower than people like Bruce. Although obviously the split and agility testing matches up. Just not sold on Landry to Seattle but we’ll see.

    • Rob Staton says:

      Too many needs to break that trend this year. They’re going to have to work that CB magic again. We know they can do it though. Either that or re-sign Maxwell which is highly possible if not probable.

      I could see a situation where they address D-line and running game early. But the running game will likely be the priority.

  6. Kenny Sloth says:

    I really wouldn’t mind Sweat as a piece behind Frank, even if we went that way relatively early.

    As you said earlier, DE is always going to be a premium and there just arent many that fit our bill

    • Volume12 says:

      Love Sweat. I’m not convinced he even knows how good he can be. Also the fact he almost had his career ruined in HS with a pretty horrific injiury and fought back to play at the level he did says a lot about him.

      • Volume12 says:

        That 6.93 3 cone of his is wowzers!

      • Volume12 says:

        Speaking of that injury, the big, bulky knee brace he wore had to affect his game. Sounds like he’s starting to lose it (the brace) which is frightening with his big time potential.

        • Trevor says:

          I read that today as well this off season is the first he has played without the brace since HS and he said it makes a big difference as you would expect for a speed rusher.

    • Rob Staton says:

      That’s the thing that makes me really think they’ll focus on it. The limited options. Either you take one of Landy, Sweat or Turay… or you’re virtually resigned to not addressing the need earlier.

      That said, I still think they go running game as a priority. But if they acquired picks for Earl Thomas or somehow ended up with two second rounders — I could imagine a scenario where they bypass guard and go RB and DE.

      • Trevor says:

        I could see that scenario for sure.

        If they do trade Earl for that 1st as speculated. The dream scenario would be

        Late 1st Round LG :Wynn, Hernandez, Price or Corbett
        Early 2nd Round Dynamic RB : Rojo or Michel
        Mid To Late 2nd Rd Leo : Sweat

        With picks 18 and say 28 JS could likely manuover and get an extra 2nd rounder to make that happen.

        • Kenny Sloth says:

          It would take a masterstroke on par with some Kevin Costner movie magic to turn Earl and 18 into three picks between 30 and 60

        • Rob Staton says:

          I’m willing to wager the Seahawks don’t go anywhere near Sony Michel. Not that he’s a bad player but just doesn’t fit their profile and the fumble rate is a major concern.

          • icb12 says:

            I don’t disagree. But in complete fairness, Michel’s fumble rate is (somewhat) skewed by a really bad sophomore season when he had 5 fumbles.

            Take a couple of those off and his fumble rate isn’t great, but it’s not absolute bottom tier either.
            Akrum wadley has a terrible fumble rate as well- and the seahawks have apparently expressed interest.

            My opinion on Michel is that he is a good to great back that landed in the perfect situation for him, where he was constantly put in the best possible situation every time he touched the ball.
            LA should take him and pair him with Gurley.

            • Rob Staton says:

              I think your final paragraph makes a lot of sense. That’s the perfect scenario for him. To go in and not need to be ‘the guy’ but to be an ideal compliment. In that type of role, put into positions where he can do what he does best, you’re right — he will excel.

              I’m not willing to gloss over the fumble rate though. It’s a bit like saying if you take away the 2016 season Seattle’s O-line hasn’t been completely rubbish for two straight years 🙂

              • Drew says:

                The difference between Michael & Michel is that Michael is an elite athlete, and Michel isn’t.

    • Del tre says:

      I think this is interesting, Sweat’s comp on NFL.com is Barkevious Mingo.

  7. Volume12 says:

    Delaware DT Bilal Nichols is intriguing as well. Only one game of his I can find, he was doubled 90% of it, but damn he’s active. Moves extremely well against up and the down the LOS, great use of the hands too.

    6’4, 306, 33″ arms, 80″ wingspan
    4.95 40
    1.72 10
    2.89 20
    7.51 3 cone
    4.44 SS (!!)
    30.5″ vert

    • Volume12 says:

      9’3″ broad jump

    • Kenny Sloth says:

      Oh he’s a ball of muscle.

      Really stands out for his team and fires off when he’s able.

      Lateral agility reminds me of Jordan Hill in college.

      He’s got some QJeff to his game, but I prefer him inside to end

  8. DC says:

    Everything hinges on ET. An additional 1st round pick allows us to operate opportunistically.

    Just in your own words Rob you have comped I Win(Wynn) to Zach Martin. That is no faint praise. You also have him rated as a top 12 player in this draft which I assume means you grade him as a first round talent. Imo we need another high pick so that we don’t HAVE to pass on a guy like Wynn who is seemingly a perfect fit at a position that has been wanting for a long time. Especially if Suh goes to the Rams. Throw Brown, Wynn, Britt, Pocic, Fluker, Ifedi, Fant + whomever into the competition to start and see which group rises to the top. Earn it or sit. When was the last season we didn’t have serious injures on the OL? 7 deep isn’t great depth but it’s better than it has been.

    I hope we’re in position should opportunity knock. I don’t see a better fit considering talent and need in round 1 aside from Nelson. Trade back with our “other” pick. There’s a chance Wynn won’t even be there at #18.

    Kudos to Trevor on landing your big boy Fluker! Now channel Wynn!

    • Rob Staton says:

      Wynn is a fantastic talent. The real star on that Georgia offense IMO.

      You’re right it does hinge on the Earl trade. But even then there are a lot of questions to answer. If you trade Earl do you need to draft Jessie Bates III or Justin Reid? If you want to get an EDGE do you have to spend an early pick there? Can you get by with Pocic at guard, having already made the investment there, allowing you to concentrate on getting a fantastic running back?

      I’ve done some mock drafts over the years where I wouldn’t have a clue who they were going to target. In 2013 I remember being on holiday with my (pregnant) wife, sat in front of a fire in the evening typing out a mock draft (romance very much alive in the Staton household). I was staring blankly at the screen with no idea what to project at #25. For a moment at least I was grateful for Percy Harvin.

      This year there are a good 5-6 names that would make real sense with Seattle’s first pick. But you’re not going to get them all. Disappointing but reality. And having signed Fluker now, it makes you wonder if RB + DL will be the early focus.

      • Volume12 says:

        Kenny mentioned that on the last post and I think he’s right. About DL and RB being the early focus. Especially if Pocic is the LG now. That’s a 1st, 2nd, 2nd, 1st, and 1st from L-R on the O-line now. Would seem odd to pump another top 64 pick into that.

        • Hawk Eye says:

          3 1st and 2 2nd round picks on the oline
          limited draft capital
          severe need for RB, DT and Edge
          and a FAST safety if they trade Earl
          can’t see how they pick o line in the first 4 rounds

          of course, when do the Hawks do what we expect?

          • Volume12 says:

            LOL. True.

            Having said that, I think we do a pretty damn good job of identifying what positions they’ll attack/target early as a community along with Rob. Not always the names selected. TBF, that’s extremely hard as is.

        • Rob Staton says:

          Just written a piece up discussing in a bit more detail why it might be RB + DE early. Should be up tomorrow unless anything happens.

          Essentially, as we sit here today, they need RB & DE help more than they need to replace Pocic. And they liked Pocic enough to draft him in R2 last year, so they kind of have to back that judgement now.

          Eventually you have to accept that the O-line has had incredible investment and draft stock pumped into it. They can’t always be ‘one more high pick’ away. No other team has pumped draft stock into their O-line like Seattle in recent years.

          • Volume12 says:

            Looking forward to it. I could see them going with some combo of Rojo & Sweat or Chubb & Green.

            • Rob Staton says:

              I think Green will go early. Possibly Carolina at #24 if they don’t take one of the bad ass guards.

              Rojo & Sweat seems to make a lot of sense currently but will take some moving around. Then load up at DL, LB and get another TE.

              • Volume12 says:

                Green would be a perfect fit for Carolina. And Seattle has to maneuver as is anyways.

                Seems like Seattle always makes a move to come up and get a guy who’s falling or predicts the fall. I’m curious as to who that’ll be this year. Probably won’t be, but wouldn’t shock me if one of those guys was Nick Chubb.

                • Rob Staton says:

                  I think they will be made for Rojo personally… suspect Chubb might be option B though.

                  • Volume12 says:

                    Oh RoJo just has ‘it.’ I think he’s the best one cut runner in the draft and would add all kinds of electricity to that backfield. I’m with ya though on those 2 as options A & B at this point.

                    I guess it’ll just depend on what position they address first.

                  • C-Dog says:

                    Those have been my logical Option A and Option Bs for the team.

                  • Nolan says:

                    Was listening to the GM street podcast and Lombardi made a point to mention that Seattle signing Fluker indicated a change in there running style from a stretch zone to more of a power set. If he is right that seems more like Chubb would be option A.

                  • Rob Staton says:

                    Not sure about that. Jones II isn’t just a zone runner or the type who needs to get inside. He’s a pretty remarkable player. Special. Pairing Jones II with Carson would be something.

                  • CHawk Talker Eric says:

                    I keep coming back to that myself: a two headed monster of a backfield with RoJo and Carson. Add Wilson and the zone read…oh boy

                    About that discussion earlier regarding RoJo’s relative lack of pass catching stats, FWIW the Trojans OC is also their WR coach. I don’t want to suggest he’s pass happy, but I do think generally he runs his air attack through the WRs and not the backfield. As far as Jones’ catching ability, I’ve never seen anything to make me think he has any issues there. He does need to improve his pass pro. He’s willing enough, but lacks technique and of course size.

                    But I think he has the potential to be a unique offensive weapon in a pro style offense. Especially in SEA’s offense paired with Carson.

          • 12th chuck says:

            I hope it wont be rb early. Not a very good track record right now, I hope it will be linebacker.

            • Rob Staton says:

              Linebacker is one of the few positions they’re strong in with Bobby and KJ (and now Mingo as the SAM/LEO). They need some young depth but wouldn’t expect a high pick there. Not with the needs elsewhere.

              As for track record on RB’s, it’s not that bad. They’ve had some back luck with injury (Prosise) and Michael wasn’t focused (but a pretty low risk gamble at the time). They also traded for Marshawn, drafted Collins, found Rawls as an UDFA and Carson in round seven. And this is a top heavy RB class this year.

              • 12th chuck says:

                looking back at the rams game, if either kj or bobby get hurt, our d struggles to say the least. Now, with Norton, maybe our depth can get coached up a bit more, hard to say.

              • Drew says:

                They also picked up Rod Smith who the Cowboys picked up and is good depth. At the time I wanted the Hawks to keep him over Rawls.

            • Patrick Toler says:

              Micheal didn’t work out and Procise can’t stay healthy. That’s two that didn’t work. Collins got pushed out on what was probably a poor roster decision. Not much of a track record to judge honestly. I’d say Jones, Chubb, Kelly, Guice, and Johnson are much better prospects than anyone they’ve drafted at RB.

        • C-Dog says:

          I think the 20 lbs of extra good weight that Pocic has added is very intriguing. With this bit of news, RB and DL seems pretty logical areas to focus on for the first two picks.

      • D-OZ says:

        I think so Rob…

  9. Volume12 says:

    No wonder Seattle scouted Cincinnati early this year. They just had 3 guys put up some video game #’s.

    • Kenny Sloth says:

      Cincinatti has been one of my favorite sleeper schools since Travis Kelce

      There was a DE from there I really liked before that too

  10. TatupuTime says:

    Off topic and sorry if I missed it in another post – but have people seen the clips Fluker has on his twitter account today of him working out? Dude looks yoked up. I had a mental picture of him from the combine when he came out – looks like a different guy now. Good weight he’s carrying. Looks the part of a run blocker.

    • BobbyK says:

      I love the Fluker signing, but I remember similar Twitter clips of J. Webb too.

      • CHawk Talker Eric says:

        You’re right to be cautious but this feels different than Webb. They’re bringing Fluker in to be the RG, no question. With Webb it was vague – maybe at OT, then inside, they weren’t sure. Also Fluker seemed to really come into his own inside. I wasn’t paying attention at the time, but you can read the praise he earned. The Giants were +20 yards rushing per game when Fluker was in the line up.

        • Drew says:

          Britt (315), Fluker (340) & Ifedi (325)…a lot of muscle on the right side, plus with the athleticism of Britt & Ifedi, moving to a power blocking scheme should do wonders for the run game.

    • Sea Mode says:

      Yeah, it was mentioned in the last thread I think. Yeah, I’d say that definitely looks like good weight…

      https://twitter.com/DerykGilmore/status/976394278854365185

  11. Morgan says:

    Are there any DE’s that are more…complete? I’ve watched a lot of prospects and they almost invariably rely on speed\power and severely lack moves or technique or even good hand-fighting. A lot of them don’t even bend the corner, they just kinda try to push their way through. I see way too much reliance on out-athlete-ing their opponents. Are there any examples of technicians that I’ve missed?

    On the plus side there are some REALLY high-motor guys out there. Adeniyi from Toledo is a joy to watch, as is Javon Rolland-Jones from Arkansas State despite a pretty pedestrian 1.71 split. He’s just tremendously productive with impressive vision and awareness.

    • Volume12 says:

      Ejiofor has great technique, but I’m not sold on him having the burst off the ball for a team like Seattle.

      Sweat will be this years Danielle Hunter. Already a great run defender, a natural, just needs some good coaching to consistently get him unlock the technique that he flashes.

    • RealRhino2 says:

      I think it’s just hard for college guys to really develop technique with the limited practice time rules. I remember being blow away seeing rookies in their first camp being taught by coaches what should be pretty fundamental stuff. They’d ask if they knew the concept and even great prospects were hearing it for the first time. Maybe that’s why so much emphasis on the SPARQ numbers and athletic testing. Just hope you can teach the guy technique.

      Rare specimens are the only guys that seem to have both.

  12. nichansen01 says:

    He who must not be named is comparing Fluker to Lacy… that’s just laughable.

  13. PowerPeanut says:

    Camp this year is going to be so much fun. Many positions and heavy rotationspots up for fight. Getting in some hungry defensive players in the draft, along with some runners and its all ready-set-go! So excited!!

  14. SeahawkeyezSubj80 says:

    What I’m really excited for in the Fluker signing, is the fact that this man is built for the power run game. I pray the football gods, this is a sign they are getting away from the cut block zone scheme.

  15. Kenny Sloth says:

    http://www.seahawks.com/video/2017/10/19/driving-gee-germain-ifedi-goes-safeway

    Gee Scott and GI

    Y’all know how much I like Ifedi!
    He’s got one season to make a pro bowl and save me from eating a tweet.

  16. Kenny Sloth says:

    CBS has a new 2 round mock draft in which we maneuver to have 2nd round picks and we use them on……

    CARLTON DAVIS AND JAMARCO JONES…… Huh?

    Auburn’s corner “to replace Sherman” XD

    And Ohio St.’s RIGHT T. I didn’t realize Tom took Germain with him

  17. CharlieTheUnicorn says:

    B.J. Hill

    This si the guy to really watch. I watched every taspe they had from the Senior bowl (etc) and he always stood out. Tremendous effort and “want to”. As was stated, dominated almost every 1v1 drill… got stoned by OG Hernandez a few times.

    So, I guess there are the 2 names to watch, but I can’t see Seattle going OG early now…..

    The scuttlebutt by JC at 1600 hours today was that Brown, Pocic, Britt, Fluker and Ifedi are your starting 5 now. He said he could see Britt and Pocic flip flop as well, but I do not see that personally. I would love to see Hernandez as the LG….. but since he is a late round 1 to mid round 2 pick… not seeing it now.

    • Kenny Sloth says:

      +300 he always flashed so strongly. I just can’t ignore a player who gets it done on the inside.

      I think DT is the most measurable-irrelevant position in football.

      90% film, 5% interview, 5% eye test/body composition. (Feel free to disagree all)

      • CharlieTheUnicorn says:

        Do you think that he is a 3 tech or NT or can he bounce out side farther towards the tackles and play a 5 tech? He was mostly shown inside between the B gaps but mostly in the A gaps.

        • C-Dog says:

          I think he could probably play at all three spots, but if Seattle drafted him, I would love to see them open up the competition at 3 tech between him and Naz Jones. I think he looks like a big powerful 3 tech in a 4-3.

        • Kenny Sloth says:

          I wanted to review some tape before I answered;

          Initially I liked him as a 1 tech as I see him as a dominant run stopper like Mebane, but he might be a little too tall and leggy for NT.

          He looks like a Tony McDaniel type with a ton of upside.

          You see him make moves and counter moves. You do see him get stoned when his first step doesn’t work sometimes.

          He did a lot of the dirty work ans I could see a player like him overtaking Naz Jones on the depth chart at run down 3T

    • D-OZ says:

      Fluker is only seined for 1 year…

      • drewdawg11 says:

        I’ve been on the B.J. Hill bandwagon for a while now. He’s a very valuable guy to play in the rotation early. I see no downside so long as he doesn’t rise too much. Wynn would be a great pick, but how well would he do in the power game? He seems more athletic and technically sound than mauler. I see him as an excellent prospect.

  18. CharlieTheUnicorn says:

    Would the RB Chubb last until the 4th round? I think he would be a serious target late 3rd onward if still available.

    • Rob Staton says:

      Second round at worst I think.

    • Patrick Toler says:

      As long as teams are as positive about his medical as the combine reports indicated, he’s a second rounder for sure. And if people are talking about Guice in the first, then Chubb has a chance to go in round one.

    • C-Dog says:

      Might even sneak into R1.

    • madmark says:

      When the Damien Harris,Alabama’s running back decided to go back to school, Chubb was the next guy on my list and I go so far to watch Harris next year when he enters the draft

  19. Kenny Sloth says:

    Knock on wood, but hyper buff RBs that are very cut and muscular like Kerryon Johnson just seem like injuries waiting to happen.

    I have no examples so its basically a superstition making me scared to mock Kerryon to us

    • nichansen01 says:

      Interesting theory… Chris Carson was shredded and he went down so easily… same without Lavon coleman at Washington.

      • Drew says:

        I don’t think Carson went down easily. He got his legs caught up in a pile and had his ankle rolled on. Doesn’t matter how shredded you are when the happens.

    • Del tre says:

      Well if we look at Demarco Murray, Leveon Bell, and Chris Carson we have evidence supporting that.
      But Alvin Kamara was healthy all year and he’s shredded, Adrian Peterson had a relatively healthy career.
      Tough to spot a real trend there.
      I would be all for Kerryon but he comes with injury concerns, i wouldn’t be the farm on him, I’d definetly want some insurance in a guy like Royce Freeman.

  20. Greg Haugsven says:

    So far between adding Bradley McDougald, Barkevious Mingo, Ed Dickson, and Jaren Brown they have only eaten up $9.37 million of cap space in 2018. Ill add in Fluker as soon as I get the numbers.

    • Trevor says:

      That is amazing value IMO. I know I am in a minority but I like this off season so far. If they can get a 1st for Earl or get him to sign a reasonable 2 yr extension then I think it could be a great off season.

      Last year we paid almost that much to a soft LG coming off an ACL injury.

  21. Sea Mode says:

    Earl for R1P29 and 2019 R2.

    Trade down from 18 for early R2 + early R3. Trade down one more time in early R3 for an extra R4.

    R1P29- RB Ronald Jones
    R2- WR Courtland Sutton
    R3- DT Andrew Brown
    R4- LB Leon Jacobs
    R4- FB/TE Jaylen Samuels
    R5- CB Nick Nelson
    R5- TE Chris Herndon
    R5- CB Tre Flowers
    R7- LB/SS Oren Burks
    R7- S Tony Brown
    R7- WR Antonio Callaway

    See who pans out at DE this year and head into next year planning to grab one early.

    • Trevor says:

      That would be an incredible draft class. Love Rds 5-7

    • Rob Staton says:

      If they land Pryor I think they’re writing off this receiver class. At least until UDFA.

    • Icb12 says:

      I can’t believe JSPC will walk out if this draft without double or triple dipping at the RB position.

      • 12th chuck says:

        I think it would be hard, considering they took 3 rb last draft.

      • Hawksince77 says:

        I think you are right. After reading a bunch of RB draft profiles, there will be options even in the 5th round worth considering. Say they draft Jones or Chubb early, they will likely draft at least one more later, perhaps even earlier. It’s impossible to be sure about any single prospect, and how often do we see the guy drafted lower (say Griffin (2nd overall) and Cousins, just to mention one example that comes immediately to mind. Or even count Carson, the 7th rounder who beat out Lacy (former second round pick) among others to start.

        With lots of picks (counting on some good compensation for Earl) after several trades, 2, more like 3 RBs out of this draft.

        And based on comments above, it seems less likely to take OL in the first couple of picks. Schade

      • CHawk Talker Eric says:

        Agree completely. They’ll take someone on Day 3. My money’s on Scarborough if he lasts

        • peter says:

          For me it almost certainly is Scarborough in a collins/ware situation. Way more explosive than I thought he was going to be.

          Even with bringing davi s back there is way too much uncertainty with the running backs.

          Carson? Does he come back? Many don’t at least not right away..see:rawls, lockett, even my favorite Nick chubb….it just takes time to really plant your leg and feel comfortable again.

          Mike Davis? a nice story but not exactly a game changer or time setter. Sadly kind of a “just a guy.”

          Mckissic? turns out he’s not a running back so that’s the first problem. 2nd problem is i’d like to see him run routes. I wonder how that would be. 73% catch rate.

          Prosise? Is dude going to contribute? Or is this going to be his career?

          I agree with anyone who thinks Seattle may take two draft picks as running back. I agree with a scenario where they wheel and deal for extra picks and take a running back early and consider jayle n Samuels as prosise’s competition. Basically the cupboard is pretty bare and/or uncertain.

    • CHawk Talker Eric says:

      That’s a pretty realistic scenario, trade value wise. And a good deal for SEA.

      Depending on who’s around at the R2 pick I’d go DL – a DT like Hill or Settle or Phillips or even Shepherd, or DE like Green or Hubbard or Hand. Probably Green–Hubbard–Settle/Hill would be my order of preference. Maybe even a DE/LEO like Sweat.

      Love the Nick Nelson pick.

      • peter says:

        Agree. I’d take sutton out and put a d line in.

        Nelson was given a great breakdown from Rob but for me until they draft that first cb with short arms in going to simply assume they wont. Not to say they shouldn’t but they’ve done some pretty consistent mathematics to make sure they only get very specific players for certain positions.

  22. C-Dog says:

    Ah, the DLiners. I love it whenever Rob writes about these guys.

    I gotta be honest, I’m not overly wild about the edge talent coming up. I love Sweat’s athletic profile, and the fact Seattle is paying interest to him, but his injury makes me queasy. Landry doesn’t get me much jacked up either. Carter makes me wonder house much dog is there.

    I would almost have them take mid round flyers on Turay or Jacobs as projects to mold.

    Those boys on the NC State DL, now, man do they get me excited. Lewis and Brown as potential inside out guys, as well.

    I wonder if Seattle doesn’t do a bit more free agent additions before the draft. Maybe one DT, and another edge talent. Mayowa, Marcus Smith, and David Bass are all still out there. I kinda thought Bass was one that got away from them last year.

    They was they are signing guys, I’m not even sure how considered they are about comp picks at this point. Maybe they add a couple DTs and another edge.

    • Rob Staton says:

      Hill and Jones were just incredible at the Senior Bowl. Their interactions with each other were cool too. Had a little D-line LOB going on there.

      • C-Dog says:

        If they grabbed Hill in one round and then turned around and NC State double dipped on Jones in the next round, I could live with that. 🙂

        • peter says:

          I think hill will be a draft a week riser. I don’t think he’ll get picked in the first like Tyson alualu was a few years back but I could see a team feeling very good about picking him in the dead middle of the second and being very confident in their choice. I think he’s got talent to spare and even if he as some teams jarran reed like player, teams need a d line leader that can handle a ton of situations in a rotation..

  23. Elijah says:

    Rob/anyone else on the board, curious to hear your thoughts on Northwestern safety Godwin Igwebuike – he tested extremely well at the combine, Top 6 in all events except for the bench. In many cases he was in the Top 2. 4-star recruit out of high school, chose to go to Northwestern, apparently is defined by his character and intelligence.

    First time I’m hearing of him and haven’t seen any tape, but all the things listed kind of makes him jump out at you on first glance.

    • Icb12 says:

      I’m a big fan.
      Very “seahawky”

      Versatile and physical
      He’s not instinctive. He sees and reacts.

      He is a project. But he has the athletic profile and the intelligence to succeed in my opinion.

    • Kenny Sloth says:

      Just about the worst safety tape in the class.

      Clearly a smart guy out there and he works hard, but he honestly looks really new to the game.

      He’s versatile as a safety but is an absolute liability in coverage at that level.

      Pete would be the one to coach him up

  24. Coach says:

    My prediction is that they sign Pryor tomorrow.

    Anyone else hoping for this?

    I think it’s a perfect fit and he will be closer to his Cleveland numbers than his Redskin numbers with us!

    Go Hawks!

    • Misfit74 says:

      Yes, I want Pryor. Good matchup piece and a big target for Wilson.

    • Dave says:

      Free agent Terrelle Pryor is expected to sign with the Seahawks or Jets.
      The Browns were in on Pryor early, but look to be out of the running. Seattle would give Pryor his best chance at rebuilding his value, though the Jets offer a clear path to snaps. Pryor should only require a one-year deal. Mar 21 – 6:12 PM
      Source: Mary Kay Cabot on Twitter

    • Del tre says:

      I’m all for it, do you have any insights as to why Pryor had such a significant drop off? I kind of assumed it was a case of Washington putting him in a position where he needed to do too much, while the Hawks can use him as a complimentary piece and let him develop as a receiver.

      • Dave says:

        Injured his ankle in week 2. The injury lingered all season. There were times when he would tweak it so bad that he would have to come out of the game. He had surgery in November to repair it.

        • Del tre says:

          Thanks for the info! Hopefully he heals well, and that being the case thats a huge signing for the Hawks if they go through with it. Thats real depth at receiver, and if they can get a franchise back in the draft the offense could enjoy a major turnaround.

    • Trevor says:

      I really hope they sign Pryor as that big WR / Red Zone target. I think he will be really productive as a big play WR in our scheme and an ideal compliment to Doug and Lockett.

      If we get him and pick up a quality RB in the draft I think the offense could be really good next year and become the strength of the team.

    • Sea Mode says:

      Idk, I guess I’m not as excited about him as some on here. When he was here in 2014 @25yo, ok I see the upside. It’s not 2014 any more…

      Now he turns 29 in June and we’re still hoping he quickly develops into a valuable WR and develops chemistry with Wilson? Remember how long it took Russ and Graham to get on the same page in the RZ? Sure, he had that 1000yd season in 2016, but that was also on 140 targets (and only 77 caught…). That’s like Iverson numbers there: if you take 40 shots/game, you had better score 40+ pts…

      Anyway, I guess if they sign him at a reasonable price I would love to be proved wrong, but as I see it now time is running out and I would almost rather give the coaching attention and reps/snaps to a young guy.

      • BobbyK says:

        Lets not forget about how his ankle injury derailed his season AND the fact that he’s only been a WR since his mid-20s. Factor those two things in place and there’s every reason to think he’s unusual in that he could be a 29-year old (on the all-important 1-year deal) who actually does show major improvement from one year to another.

        • peter says:

          I just feel like it’s a lot hope and potential being served up for pryor. He had a big year. Not a good year. a big year. I see red zone threat I guess because of his size but he was not very efficient with his chances. Just 4 tds on on a massive 140 attempts. And a modest 13 yards a catch. And a jermaine kearse level 55% catch rate.

          I’m not against the guy at all and like that he’s tried his hardest to reinvent himself but I hope it is a nice modest contract with easy outs.

          I see him in Seattle’s offense going 75 attempts, 40 catches, 600 yards, 3-4 tds. that’s an aggregate of his skills with a Seattle’s reduced volume. So basically kearse. which Seattle needs.

          If I were Seattle i would pursue brandon Coleman who is basically free, the same size as pryor, a more consistent pass catcher, a wide receiver with experience in a complicated pro style offense and fits the reclamation profile. I get the Pryor thing if they think he can help with scramble drills now that would make sense.

  25. Georgia Hawk says:

    Hi Rob,

    Which would you prefer, or think Schneider and Pete would prefer: Staying at #18 and getting the top guy (for arguments sake lets say RoJo) on their overall board, or trading down, maybe more than once and grabbing the 3rd or 4th option (a Guice/Freeman/etc type player)?

    My thought process here stems from the 2012 draft. They traded back a few spots to draft Irvin, which was a bit of a shock at the time, but he was the top guy on their board. They pretty much knew he would be there 3 picks later. It seems like this year is a bit different with everybody wanting a piece of the RB pie, we could potentially miss out on that one special player they have their eye on. Do the extra picks outweigh the value of selecting the top guy on your board?

    Thanks for all the work you put into this, such a fantastic resource!

    • Georgia Hawk says:

      Hope that makes sense, I wasn’t exactly sure how to frame the question I had in my head.

    • Rob Staton says:

      It’s a tough question. Because I think Rojo is noticeably better than Guice and Freeman. But they need to fill out their board. Picking at #18 and then not again until #120 likely isn’t going to cut it. That said, there’s little talk of Jones II going that early so they might be able to comfortably move down and still get him.

      And thanks for the kind words.

      • peter says:

        Rob,

        You’ve got a pretty good memory for this kind of thing but if rojo doesn’t heal in time to really do a “combine,” before the draft how far does he drop? a full round into the low 2nd?

        I really hope he heals up but more importantly I hope he doesn’t reaggravate his hamstring. Right now I’m still leaning top 40

  26. Forty20 says:

    Mike Davis returns to the fold for another year. Looks like there will be an element of stability in the backfield to some extent, even if Seattle do end up plumping for one of the premier running backs in the draft.

    • Rob Staton says:

      They needed some bodies. Presumably the deal means he could be a pre-season cut depending on how the competition plays out.

      • Sean-O says:

        That RB meeting room could be awfully crowded if SEA takes a RB early as expected in the draft. It’s clear PC is all about competition again in ’18.

        A group of a rookie RB/CC/Davis with some McKissic or Prosise sprinkled in has potential to be a pretty solid unit.

        • Rob Staton says:

          They needed some depth there. Without the Davis signing it would’ve been Carson, Prosise and a rookie. McKissic has a specific role and isn’t really an orthodox runner. The Davis signing provides some needed depth and stability at the position. Especially with Prosise’s injury history and we don’t know if Carson will ever be reliably healthy.

  27. Michigan 12th says:

    All the sign do point to running back early this year, but I can’t get over last year when the CB class was the deep area in the draft. While Seattle did take numerous DB’s in last years draft, they waited as long as possible, and took Griffen who no one saw coming. I really think the same thing will happen this year again with RB. They will come out of the draft with a back or two, but I question whether it will be as early as we are thinking. My guess at this point is it will not.

    At this point even I have to acknowledge at some point you have to let go of spending so much on the O-Line. They have a lot of draft capitol there and with the recent signing of Fluker, I think they will are going to focus on the D-line early. I see them trading back as far as they can acquiring picks, and then taking the DT they like the best still on the board. After that I see them going O-line again like they did last year. After that they will fill in other roster spots with remaining picks. Most likely going RB next. They will probably package multiple picks to get into the day 2 talent.

    • Rob Staton says:

      The two situations are very, very different though. For starters, taking a cornerback in round three was early for Pete Carroll. Look at their draft history. That was much earlier than any of the other CB’s they’ve drafted.

      It was also a very thick cornerback class with options deep into round three. This running back class is not deep into round three. It’s deep in the top-50.

  28. Kenny Sloth says:

    Baker Mayfield just rubs me the wrong wag

    I wouldn’t touch the guy.

    He’s just bad culture 💯

    One of his interviews is about a cancer patient that was involved in a OU outreach who passed away.

    He spends about 2 seconds on camera

    ” uhh I dont know yeah its hard”

    Little girl just died in December.

    Dude is a shallow guy. Somebody else can waste the pick developing him and waiting for him to mature. He’s got a Tony Romo/Eli Manning type ceiling for me and thats only if he proves he can be a professional.

    Oh god I wish I was at those combine interviews. Give me his arrogant ass behind a closed door. Id ask much better questions than if he thought his mom was hot.

    I wouldn’t bet against him but I’m certainly not a fan

    • Kenny Sloth says:

      The whole docu short was about their special bond.

      It just sounds like she was special and he’s a 2-time walk-on

  29. House says:

    The Giants traded JPP and a 4th to TB for a 3rd/4th.

    Thoughts? I’m still wondering what is “fair” for ET if we do move him

  30. PowerPeanut says:

    ET3 in a speech to kids in Ireland on football : “I just love the game, I never worry about the money”

    There we go, give the man a minimum deal!