Courtney Upshaw tape vs Mississippi State

February 29th, 2012 | Written by Rob Staton

Due to unforeseen circumstances today’s updated mock draft will be postponed until tomorrow. In the meantime I’ve added game tape (courtesy of JMPasq) of Courtney Upshaw vs Mississippi State. Let’s also open up the comments section for your thoughts post-combine, plus any questions you have… fire away.

68 Responses to “Courtney Upshaw tape vs Mississippi State”

  1. Misfit74 says:

    There is no doubt Upshaw looked fantastic while at Alabama in college. He was a dominant force on a dominant defense. I’m not convinced he’ll be a dominant player at the NFL level. He could be the next James Harrison. I don’t claim to know and admittedly have my doubts. I did watch a few games of his this past season and was very impressed. For me it is hard to separate him as an individual among a great team and also to forecast how his college game might translate to the NFL, esp. in light of his poor ‘measurables’, including arm-length, height, and perceived explosiveness and fluidity. He doesn’t look the part of a speed-rusher that I probably prefer. It seems a lot of guys can power-rush but the explosive speed guys with excellent body-lean around the edge are more rare. I like Upshaw but I have questions. Obviously, as a passionate Seahawks fan, I was badly for the team to get this pick right.

  2. Misfit74 says:

    Should read “I want badly for the team..”

  3. thebroski says:

    Hope everything is ok dude.

  4. Rob says:

    thebroski – All good man, not a personal thing. Just work-related… big news on the patch I cover for the day job which has made today insane. No time for a mock today unfortunately so just put the tape up and will be back on it tomorrow.

  5. Rob says:

    Had some interesting Hawks information today. Will divulge tomorrow.

  6. Misfit74 says:

    Looking forward to it, Rob.

  7. SHawn says:

    Such a tease…

  8. ben says:

    Brutal tease.

    I’m curious about your story Rob. Why are you a Hawks fan? What’s your bio? Maybe you already have it someplace but wondering what a footie fan in England is doing have better inside dibs than the local Seattle media. Now that the yanks beat Italy have we graduated from red-headed step child to step child yet? Maybe not yet.

    And you’re a journo (most of my Brit nomenclature came from Green St Hooligans) covering mostly football (soccer) and the nfl right?

    Just curious because you have a great take on the prospects/draft/etc. Impressed.
    Cheers

  9. Nate Dogg says:

    Am I crazy for thinking Fletcher Cox might be the most dominant defensive lineman in this draft? I’m really starting to wonder why he isn’t more highly regarded.

  10. NMD says:

    Damn it Rob know I’m going to be refreshing your site all day tomorrow until your inside story comes up.

  11. Joe says:

    I guess I’ll get the ball rolling.

    In my opinion, these two players really raised their stock at the combine.

    Luke Kuechly and Dontari Poe.

    Poe show some freak athletic ability at the combine, even though his college career has been lackluster. Considering the Hawks already sport a ton of meat on the DL, I can’t see them heading in this direction unless Poe somehow slips into the 2nd round (not likely). That said, Poe’s combine is Haloti Ngata like, but it does little to explain why his athletic ability has not translated onto the football field.

    Kuechly on the other hand is a very viable option at #12. I think his measurables at the combine really backed up his monster college numbers. With Leroy Hill’s most recent pot arrest, I believe LB just became a position of need. Kuechly could step in day one and play MLB. That said, this pick would be highly dependent on where Mario Williams / Jeremy Mincey land in free agency.

    Thoughts?

  12. AussieSeahawk says:

    It’s been mentioned by a few of us that this may be a draft where we trade down from #12. This seems even more of an option now that the DE’s all performed well enough at the combine to move up the board. It’s becoming likely that the three players we’re highlighting, Couples, Upshaw and Ingram, may well be gone by the time it gets to us. With the DE’s moving up Richardson would be a good candidate to fall to #12.

    Yes, he’s the #1 RB and would be a great pick up for us at #12 but he is also a fantastic piece of bait. Teams like Detroit, Denver, Pittsburgh and a long shot Green Bay could be potential takers to move up to fill a position of need with Richardson as the huge reward.

    Detroit – Best will get injured again this year, Leshour is coming off a torn achilles, and would give a team that made the play offs a huge offensive boost.
    Denver – McGahee is getting older and wearing out, Moreno is injury prone and with Richardson as Tebow’s backup it would make his choice at QB more appealing.
    Pittsburgh – Mendenhall torn ACL and may miss the start of the season in his contract year.
    His replacement is a high priority and Richardson fits the Steelers mold.
    Green Bay – Has a big need at RB and the need would be high on their draft board. A move up may be a bit costly as Seattle could get a round 2, 3 and 5 and as Green Bay likes to build their team from the draft, they may not be willing to give up that many picks.

    For Seattle, it would give us the chance to get another 2nd round and back into the 5th round. PCJS have great success in the lower rounds and we could score well with the extra pick. For me, I could see the draft possibly going like this:

    Round 1 – #23, 24, 25 – Perry (Branch)
    Round 2 – #11 – Mychal Kendricks (Branch) #23, 24, 25 – Doug Martin (Miller, Wilson)
    Round 3 – #12 – Osweiler (Cousins)
    Round 4 – #11 – Derek Wolfe
    Rounds 5, 6, 7 – PCJS magic

    Rob, I know you are set against a trade down, but in your own words of wisdom you use the blog as food for thought. It’s one of the reasons I’m here every day and hanging on every post. Go Hawks!

  13. AussieSeahawk says:

    PS…I’m with NMD. Rob, I too will be back every half hour tomorrow to find out the news.

  14. Christian says:

    I’m with ya on Cox Natt Dogg, when I watched the Kentucky, and Alabama tape he was a factor on every single snap, same reason I like Kendricks.

  15. Misfit74 says:

    Random ideas..

    Rnd 1: Richardson, M.Floyd, or QB i.e. BPA
    Rnd 2: D.Martin/D.Wilson or QB or DE/OLB
    Rnd 3: C.Gray, QB, DE/OLB, OG, OT, CB

  16. Misfit74 says:

    I noticed the guy stoning Upshaw (early and often) on the tape is one Addison Lawrence, NFLDraftscout’s 95th-rated Offensive Tackle. But, I’ll keep watching… ;)

  17. Charlie says:

    @Misfit74

    The guy that gets beat by upshaw 15 seconds into the video for a sack? and then again at 1:41? You do realize that players don’t get sacks every play, and yet after 4 pass plays vs lawrence, upshaw has two sacks. What’s your definition of stonewall, getting destroyed?

  18. Derek says:

    Hey Rob were you able to get your interview with Burfict? If he is available in the 4th or 5th I think he would be worth a gamble. Man has he fallen hard.

  19. MattH says:

    I think the reason he used “stonewalling” is because this is the first tape (for me at least) where I’ve seen Upshaw be stopped. Literally stopped. Let alone driven back even by a foot. That’s what makes Upshaw such an intriguing prospect is that he never gives ground. Every second of these tapes he’s getting closer to the QB and the QB knows it.
    And as to the measurables seen at the combine this weekend I feel like none of it really matters since Upshaw should be seen as a DE with plus mobility rather than a LB with below average mobility.

  20. MattH says:

    It is rather surprising though that Lawrence is the one doing the “stonewalling” (relatively)

  21. Charlie says:

    He’s actually not though… If you watch the tape, 77 does a better job against upshaw than 62 (Lawrence). Lawrence gets worked by upshaw, especially “early and often”, his first play for god sakes he gives up a sack! I’m simply pointing out that if you’re gonna get cute atleast know what you are talking about.

  22. Jake says:

    I’ve said it before, I’ll say it again… Hightower is the superior pass rusher. I know he played MLB at Alabama, but he was very good at DE in his limited plays on obvious passing downs. For the Seahawks he could play SLB, kick Wright to MLB and he can rush opposite Clemons on passing downs. Or, he could just be the backup LEO with some versitility. He’s an instinctive football player and he could have a phenominal impact at two positions of need. Not to mention, he is going to be available at #12 for sure, possibly even after a moderate trade-down. Upshaw – I just don’t see any explosion, I’m not sold on him. Solid, but unspectacular is not top-15 worthy in any draft IMO.

  23. Matt says:

    Anyone else notice Upshaw plays better standing up then he does in the 3-point stance? The guy would be a beast in the 3-4. If a team like the Chargers want to trade up to get him, I’d be open to that offer. Trade down, get another pick, select a DE with some speed. @18, I think Perry or Mercilus offer better fit and value.

    He is strong as an ox, but he sure as heck isn’t fast, and if you believe all the coach speak that Pete Carroll wants a faster front 7, then I don’t see how he fits. Especially not as an OLB in a 4-3, so then your looking at a slower, but strong DE. Ok, so doesn’t fit the LEO (not Clemons fast) or the 5-tech (not Red strong), or OLB. Why exactly do so many people like this guy again?

  24. Steeeve says:

    I’m with you, Matt. He’s strong with a good motor, but I dont see the speed or agility needed to play SAM linebacker (or whichever is opposite Clemons, I tend to get SAM and WILL confused). I feel like Pete and JS will prefer the athleticism of Ingram at that spot, if he’s available, which is the same reason I think Coples is not an option. Ingram seems more versatile, and better suited to an edge-rushing, 3-4 hybrid sort of position, where he can drop into coverage or put his hand down in a 4-man front on 3rd down.

    Then again, I feel that Ingram’s measurables will probably land him inside the top 10, so it may be a moot point anyway.

  25. andy says:

    Agree with Jake and Matt. Upshaw is very solid in a dominant college defense but not explosive enough for our needs at pass rush. I don’t see enough speed plus lean/dip to be an edge rusher in the NFL. If Coples is gone a trade down would be best for us. I would be more than happy getting Branch, Perry, Mercilus or Irvin further down in the 1st and gaining a mid round pick in the process!

  26. Matt says:

    I like Upshaw because he doesn’t have a weakness and plays with supreme violence. People keep spouting off about Von Miller, but let’s not forget that Miller is a complete liability against the run and for a freak athlete, is not very good in coverage (though never asked to do it in college).

    I am not trying to discredit Miller, but there is great value in a player who can produce 8-10 sacks a year while also being an above average run defender. Not to mention, the attitude Upshaw would bring would have a powerful effect on the defense. The Steelers aren’t loaded with a bunch of HWS guys, but rather a collection of hard nosed, disciplined football players. They’ve done alright.

    To me (in baseball terms), Von Miller and Aldon Smith are the guys who hit .240 but hit 35 HRs and have 130Ks on the year. At the end of the year, fans will say, “wow, he hit 35 HRs! He’s fantastic.” Whereas Upshaw strikes me as the guy who hits .290, 20-25 HRs and only strikes out 80 times.

    It’s not as exciting, but in the long run, his value comes from not having any liabilities. Yes, I recognize that his coverage ability is limited, but if drafted by the Hawks, he’s not going to be asked to play that role often. He also brings value by being able to put his hand on the ground. I love his versatility and he has experience in the 3-4 and 4-3 at multiple positions.

    Those of us that really love Upshaw as a football player don’t see him as a 15 sack guy. What we do see, is a guy who brings a presence, will provide a pass rush (7-10 sacks) and will be an enforcer against the run. His instincts are near elite and has thrived in a defense (Saban, who you don’t see the field if you aren’t a team guy) that demands discipline and ability. Let’s not forget that Pete Carroll (despite the USC flair), values guys who are “all in,” yet bring an edge. That’s a rather tough act to pull off. It’s the difference between and Upshaw and a Vontaze Burfict. Despite similar on field attitudes/presence, one is supremely beneficial while the other is greatly detrimental.

  27. Matt says:

    *Not trying to sway opinion or “convert” anybody, just wanted to give perspective from someone who really likes Upshaw as a football player.

  28. andy says:

    From Sporting News….. “Courtney Upshaw, OLB, Alabama, 6-1 1/2, 272; new likely draft position: Late first round or high second round. We were disappointed with Upshaw. He struggled during the linebacker drills, where he was required to move his feet and show that he could handle playing off the ball in pass coverage. He was upright and stiff in drops, could not flip his hips to change direction quickly and lacked the explosiveness and burst that NFL teams wanted to see. In our view, his performance clearly showed that he is a power player who lacks the explosiveness and speed to be a threat as an edge pass rusher.”

  29. Meat says:

    Thanks Andy. I like Upshaw and there is no doubt he probably would be a very safe pick, but I don’t love Upshaw for many reasons stated by others.
    I know trading down will probably not happen, but I think in this draft it might prove useful to fill a needs at DE and LB with good talent by trading down in the first. Upshaw could slip and Richardson could slip to 12, which would be excellent trade bait with the Bengals if Richardson is available at 12th pick. Bengals get their needs met with a VERY good RB and Seattle gets Upshaw or Perry and Kuechly as the bonus due to trading down. Then the Hawks grab Doug Martin and Osweiler in the third. That gives two quality players on defense, a back, and a QB prospect, and only half way through the draft. How is that a bad scenerio?

  30. Doug says:

    Hey Rob, I will go ahead and do the mock for you this week.

    Indi – RG3
    St.L – Luck
    Minn – Kalil
    Clev – Blackmon
    Tampa – Poe
    Skins – Dre Kirk
    Jags- Ingram
    Pants – Brockers
    Fins – Rieff
    Bills – Coples
    K.C. – Upshaw
    Hawks – Richardson

    The rest – who cares…

  31. Doug says:

    oops, I meant Claibourne for the Skins, not Dre Kirk

  32. Ben2 says:

    If Upshaw isn’t “value” @ 12 who will the hawks go with? I believe there might be some value on the board at DE in the 2nd…So, we return to who to pick at 12 if a rusher does’t present value/is a reach there? I like fletcher Cox! I watched a SMALL sampling of his tape and the 1st thing I noticed was that the opposing team was assigning 2 blockers to him on the majority of the plays. This im

  33. FWBrodie says:

    Mike Mayock described Upshaw as somebody who can “set the edge, play the pass, and most importantly in today’s NFL get to the quarterback” based on film study. This guy isn’t one dimensional by any stretch, and if he had never showed up at the combine he’d still be considered competent dropping into coverage. I hate hate hate watching people’s opinions change based on track events. FOOTBALL is the game the Seahawks play.

    BTW “stoning”? Give me a break. As a DE Upshaw has more than one responsibility. At no point in the above film does he lose control of his matchup. He can’t just go balls to the wall at the QB on every play. In certain play calls he may be the only defense against the entire outside of the field, in which case two of his three rush lanes are not options (inside and through the tackle) because if he loses contain the QB or RB has a wide open 15×20 yard lane to prance through. The position is a lot more complicated than pass rushing alone, and even if it wasn’t, how many defensive ends dominate their opponent on every single play? That isn’t a realistic expectation for anyone. See Julius Peppers vs. rookie Okung. You’re looking for a handful of great plays in any given game, and Upshaw generally tops that expectation.

  34. Ben2 says:

    Crap…problem with writing on your phone! Where was I… This implies to me that he is the best D-lineman on the team and that the opposing team is being FORCED to account for him….and anytime someone eats up 2 blockers your freeing someone else to make plays. Cox also looked scheme flexible- I think he could move along the line to create mismatch problems, ie play 3 & 5 technique

  35. Ian says:

    The combine is to help players with a lack of quality tape. Upshaw has boat loads of quality tape. This guy plays mean and strong, yet he plays incredibly smart. Even on the run plays that he was getting blocked out on, he managed to hold his edge and turn the play inside. Like someone above mentioned, even when a blocker gets his hands on him he continues to fight towards the quarter back. My list remains : Upshaw, Coples, Richardson, Ingram, hope to trade back…

  36. AlaskaHawk says:

    Okay a couple thoughts. I was disappointed that Upshaw didn’t participate in more drills. The ones he did participate in he did okay. H is best moment was punching the bags as he ran by – definetely the hardest punching LB/DE.

    So maybe he will slip, but will he slip to where we pick in the second? Probably not.

    I’m not excited about trading down for two reasons:
    1. There are other good picks to be had at 12. Why not the #2 WR or Trent Richardson, or the #2 CB, or a great LB? Really it amounts to you wanting more picks when you can’t even make a decision on your first pick.

    2. All this trading down talk for more draft picks assumes that some other team is an idiot. You assume that no one else can find a great player in the second round or fifth round. News flash – all the teams think they can find great players. No one is just going to give us a draft pick. They do the same calculation that we do. Why move up to #12 and lose a draft choice when they can get a great player (perhaps the one they want) at 24 or 32?

    DIdn’t PC try it last year in the first and no one would deal?

  37. Stay Off The Flowers says:

    AlaskaHawk: I suggest you take a look at the Jaguars or Vikings recent draft history, and the Redskins and Panthers as well if you’d like. It’s not that the FO might think other teams are idiots, but that they have a different system of evaluation that would cause them to reach/ignore based on their criteria. Jags picked up a 2nd-round graded player in Alualu last year if my memory serves. I think they’ll appropriately balance how they feel about a player versus the value they can get later in the round/with an extra pick in the 2nd/3rd. This class’ evaluations are all over the map anyways: Tannehill, Osweiler, Griffin’s rise, Janoris Jenkins, Perry, the list goes on. It shows that there’s no such thing as consensus on ‘top talent’, and it doesn’t get clearer as the draft gets closer.

  38. Misfit74 says:

    Here’s another idea to help solve the pass-rush:

    “NFL Network’s Jason La Canfora reports that the Raiders will release OLB Kam Wimbley if he does not agree to a pay cut before March 13.”

    Wimbley is a very good pass-rusher and would probably fit as a SLB/Leo/DE type in our defense as a pure pass-rusher. I like the idea of pursuing Wimbley if he indeed does not return to Oakland.

  39. Misfit74 says:

    Great discussion, guys.

    Good point about liabilities (think it was Matt). If his run-defense prowess is secondary to the primary need of pass-rusher, then I’m fine with it. Run defenders are easy to find. I’m interested in pass-rush first, run-defend second when speaking our how we fix our pass-rush shortcomings. If Upshaw can provide that I’m all for it. This has been a good, objective discussion.

  40. AlaskaHawk says:

    I just saw Nick Perry mocked at a #10 spot. His combine grabbed some attention. Upshaw seems to be falling to around #20-24. The same mock had Ingram falling to us
    :-)

    Our number one player has to have a high motor the entire game and be a sure tackler. They must not only chase the QB or RB, but when they get flattened by the LT they need to jump up and keep chasing. Play after play. They need that amount of energy and stamina. I’m not sure who would be best for this. Maybe there are a lot of people in the first round that could do it but every time we focus on one then the flaws are picked apart.

  41. Smeghead says:

    I am curious what those people that seem a bit sour on Upshaw @ 12 think of Ingram? I have a hard time seeing him being a 3 down type of player with our current roster. I don’t see the versatility that Upshaw has. What position would he end up playing this year?

    If all he can be used as is a rotational guy with Clemons this year I wouldn’t be too excited about taking someone that high for that role. I also am not convinced that Dexter Davis or Pierre Allen could be Clemons replacement. I’m not saying I am sure they are, but I just don’t see the value and versatility of Ingram.

  42. RJD says:

    I kind of like John Claytons prediction yesterday…we sign Mario Williams and Matt Flynn in free agency along with our guys (big red, heater ect.).We franchise Beast Mode. We draft the big WR from Notre Dame in the 1st and an LB in the 2nd.
    Super Bowl contender?

  43. FWBrodie says:

    Ingram is explosive, but lacks the power and big-hit mentality of Upshaw. I think if Upshaw is off the board, Ingram would be the consolation prize, but the Seahawks would be giving up the flexibility to move him to LB as well as some big ground against the run. I think the future of the leo position would be in good hands with Ingram though.

  44. AlaskaHawk says:

    I see Ingram or Upshaw or Branch as being an upgrade to our current DEs. I see Dontari Poe or Cox being an upgrade to DT but we can probably get by with the people we got.

    Basically we are not getting enough sacks. The reason why being our linemen just can’t chase anyone down. They can’t be moved from their position – but they won’t move from their position either. Whether it is speed, conditioning or age, I don’t know, but I do know they aren’t able to chase. And we have had some notable games where they didn’t even defend the run well (Dallas).

  45. FWBrodie says:

    Melvin Ingram = More athletic Darryl Tapp

  46. Hawk O'War says:

    I like Upshaw. However, I think he will fall a lil’ bit in the draft because he lacks speed, and manueverbility (is that a word). He does have awesome awareness, instinct, and beastly strength. But weaknesses I see is his decisiveness and gets beat when he doesn’t get extension/ separation. When he utilizes his leverage and his strength, instead of just blindly bull rushing through blockers, he looks unstoppable.

  47. Richard says:

    Rob, So what’s the news update: Not that your busy or anything, I mean I don’t understand how you do ALL this. Your 1st job commitment, Twitter feed, 8 hour time difference, Mock update and have time for a Seahawk tease for all us Screaming Babies “I want my Seahawk news NOW!” types. So how do you do it??? Oh and by the way WHAT’S THE NEWS!!!

  48. Ely says:

    Seems no one is talking about the great combine Mercilus turned in. After the questions to where his production comes from (16 sacks 9 forced fumbels) he seems to have answered it with his combine performance. To me he seems to be the guy the Hawks should target. Size, speed, strength, the knack for forcing fumbels (which Carrol will love) and the killer last name. He has only one year of production; so he was a late bloomer, should mean he’ll only get better. I like Mercilus a lot at #12.

  49. PatrickH says:

    I guess the question is how does Upshaw fit into the Seahawks defense scheme. Pete Carroll’s current scheme has Red Bryant, Mebane, Branch, and Clemons on the defensive line, and so if there is no scheme or personnel changes, then Upshaw has to be OLB. In the current scheme, the OLB has spent the majority of times in coverage, which will not the best use of Upshaw.

    Two ways to maximize the usage of Upshaw: (1) move Red Bryant inside to rotate with Branch and have Upshaw as the strong-side DE, or (2) change to 5-2 scheme and have Upshaw as the 5th defensive lineman. Of course, 5-2 scheme means there are only 6 players in coverage (vs 7 in coverage for 4-3 scheme), which will be risky against a team with a good QB.

    When Pete Carroll said that he wanted to improve the pass rush, it wasn’t clear to me how he intended to go about it.

  50. MLT says:

    Wasn’t james harrison defensive player of the year before? Come on people the hawks have had 1 guy in franchise history achieve that Tez! What would be wrong with a guy like him on our defense? I would say drafting a guy with potential to be defensive player of the year would be well worth a #12 pick spent. If you guys are comparing him to harrison then he has that high of a ceiling I would think right? What else could you ask for in a guy?

  51. MLT says:

    Sorry I was meaning those people that have compared upshaw to harrison. I have heard it the last few days now of people saying that like its a bad thing?

  52. Micah says:

    I love the idea of getting Mario Williams. He’s an immediate every down improvement. I also support trading down. I still think Ingram is a player for the 18-20 range. We can trade down and get him, or a comparable prospect. The guy that I’m really keen on is Doug Martin. I would use a pick gained from trading down to make sure to get him at the end of the first.

    My ideal draft start:
    Trade Down
    1st Round Zach Brown
    2nd Round Doug Martin
    2nd Round Bruce Irvin
    3rd Round Osweiler/Cousins

    That gets us some greasy fast speed, and high quality players. When coupled with acquiring Mario Williams, looks like a stout defense to me. I’d rather do this than keep the pick at 12 and get Couples or Upshaw, I think I’d rather get Martin than Richardson, because as people have pointed out, Richardson will get you value in a trade and allow us to build more.

    Upshaw makes me think of a MLB without enough speed or pass coverage to play the position. He is great at diagnosing the play, rarely makes mistakes, and is phenomenal vs. the run, but he doesn’t look like a guy that will be a factor too much in pass plays. I don’t want him. I don’t want Ingram either. Richardson I like. Couples is a boom or bust prospect.

  53. Smeghead says:

    I can’t tell you how happy that scenario would make me Micah…

  54. FWBrodie says:

    Zach Brown is the polar opposite of Courtney Upshaw. Great at track, terrible at football.

  55. MattK says:

    Too many Matt’s so I’m adding a K to my name ;)

    To add what I meant on “value” when I mentioned Perry or Mercilus would be better at 18 than Upshaw at 12,

    I think Upshaw could be a very good DE in a traditional 4-3 defense (but better in a 3-4). He can stuff the run and pressure the QB well enough. For a team looking for a traditional DE opposite another traditional DE, he could offer great value, but, imo, he does not offer the same value to the Seahawks as those other teams since our scheme does not use traditional DEs. We don’t need an all-around type DE at LEO, but a player who excels as a speed pass-rusher even if he gives up a little in the run game. If you replace Upshaw with Clemons does he really adding anything more to the pass-rush? Some see him as a 8-10 sacks/year guy, well that’s still 1-3 less than Clemons averaged the last two years. He makes the run-defense better, but as others have pointed out it’s our pass rush that needs improvement.

    I think a lot of fans like him and his “value” because they think he can play as an OLB too, but if you’re like me and think he’s purely a 4-3 DE in our defense, then you have to grade him a little lower. And if you don’t see his game as adding the big-time pass rush improvement you want with the 12th pick, then you again grade him a little lower.

    That’s why I’d like to see the Hawks trade down and get a better scheme player and more draft picks.

  56. andy says:

    I would go for Micah’s scenario with one swap out. Either Lavonte David or Mychal Kendricks instead of Zach Brown. (both are plenty fast with better instincts and tecnique) And i will be shocked if Osweiler makes it out of round 2!

  57. Smeghead says:

    i take it back, i’d rather have Andre Branch than zach brown

  58. Rob says:

    Ben – I used to live out in the PNW but moved back to the UK a few years ago. I’m a sports journalist with a passion for football (NFL, College) and started this blog when I moved back over here basically to just talk draft. I’ve had the chance to get to know people, one of which is extremely well connected to the Hawks. I’m/we are fortunate that he’s willing to share some info.

    Nate Dogg – not crazy at all, but his tape is a little inconsistent. Physically he’s the full package, but he’s never truly dominated.

    Joe – Without doubt those two players enhanced their stock, but I’m not sure Poe or Kuechly will be on Seattle’s radar. The Seahawks want a better edge rush.

    AussieSeahawk – I can think of scenario’s where Seattle try to move down, but I think it’s very likely they’ll see enough value at #12 and a player they like enough to stay put.

    Derek – Not heard anything yet. I spoke to his agent originally. Vontaze didn’t do himself any favors at the combine.

    Andy – I guarantee you Upshaw goes earlier than that.

    Ben2 – Pass rush is the key at #12 unless a certain running back remains on the board and other DE’s are not.

    RJD – There is zero chance of that happening. It’s a crazy prediction. The only thing likely is the franchise tag bit for Lynch.

  59. Jake says:

    Micah,

    My ideal draft:
    1st Trade down… (get a 2nd)
    1st D. Hightower (SLB, 3rd down rusher)
    2nd M. Kendricks (WLB)
    2nd Osweiler (QB)
    3rd Best 3-tech DT/WR on the board

  60. AlaskaHawk says:

    I agree with Rob that the Seahawks won’t trade down. And I will say it again, people who want to trade down for more picks aren’t capable of making a decision and picking a great player at 12. One thing I can guarantee, if we trade down we will never get whoever is picked above us!

  61. AussieSeahawk says:

    AlaskaHawk

    Trading down does not mean you are not capable of making a decision and picking a player at the higher position, it’s a means of filling positions of need. Using the Patriots as an example, I’m sure Belichick and their front office were quite capable of making decisions at the lower position but three recent Super Bowls with a team built from lower round draft picks speaks to the wisdom of sometimes trading down to fill more needs. This draft has a lot of second line players that have the potential to develop into top class players. We have a lot of gaps to fill and one extra pick can go a long way.

  62. AussieSeahawk says:

    Rob
    Have you had a chance to look at tape on Derek Wolfe at all. At 6’5, 298 and a good showing the Combine, he’s had some good reports and looks like he could be steal in the fourth round.

  63. Jake says:

    AlaskaHawk,

    Trading down doesn’t mean we can’t make a decision, it means the player(s) we’ve decided on are expected to be available a few picks later than 12. Would we get grief for picking Hightower or Perry at 12? Probably, but I have DECIDED I like them better as prospects than either Ingram or Upshaw. Why would we not attempt to maximize the value of our draft picks and accumulate a second pick and get the guy we want?

  64. AlaskaHawk says:

    Belichick is the greatest drafter ever. He doesn’t need to trade down because he has already got picks from his ex players. He had two number ones last year and has two number ones this year. We would be lucky to ever approach his mastery.

    But if you really want to trade down, he would probably be willing to give us a his later round #1 and a 6 or 7.

  65. FWBrodie says:

    I don’t think Belichick is a great drafter, I think he’s great at getting the most value out of his talent by selling high.

  66. Michael (CLT) says:

    Upshaw will be JS/PC Lawrence Jackson/Aaron Curry… all in one.

    Talking about Upshaw makes my eyes twitch.

  67. AlaskaHawk says:

    LOL – That would suck!
    Upshaw may be slow and stiff but at least he can tackle.
    Of course so can Bryant and Branch.