Friday draft notes: Latimer, 49ers, Roby & James

April 25th, 2014 | Written by Rob Staton

Cody Latimer here, making two middle aged Bears scouts feel inadequate

Cody Latimer is going to be an early pick in this draft.

I don’t say that with any authority of course. It’s just my opinion. But he looks better than most of the receivers in this already loaded class. Some team is going to get a terrific football player. The Seahawks will be lucky if he lasts until pick #32.

Today he held another pro-day of sorts — running routes and catching balls for 16 minutes in front of 25 teams. Chip Kelly was present from the Eagles — while according to Tony Pauline the 49ers spent “extensive time” with Latimer. Those words were tough to write after seeing the Indiana receiver proudly sporting a Seahawks cap ten days ago.

We may not see a more Seahawky receiver for a while — his combination of strong hands, run blocking and ability to compete for the ball in the air (not to mention speed and leaping ability) make him a very appealing option. And yet here’s the reality…

These receivers are going to go early.

Latimer, Odell Beckham Jr, Brandin Cooks. They’re probably going to be long gone. And that’s after the likes of Sammy Watkins, Mike Evans and Marqise Lee get snapped up.

Maybe Seattle pre-empted this with the Sidney Rice re-signing? Despite the depth in quality, perhaps they just won’t be able to get one of top wide outs? And maybe the value will be pushed into another position of need like right tackle or the defensive line?

If I had to name three players who just look like great fits for this team it’d be Latimer, Joel Bitonio and Ryan Shazier — with their combination of competitive spirit, athleticism and scheme fit. They’re not the only appealing prospects — but they’ll do for me.

Let’s hope they aren’t all off the board by #32.

49ers trading up?

It’s kind of a funny thing to say — but the 49ers almost have too many picks in this draft.

They have 11 in total — a solitary first rounder, two second rounders and three third rounders.

They have holes to fill, but are 11 rookies going to make the roster? Are they going to find six starters by the end of day two?

Probably not.

They also have the ammunition to be aggressive and target a top player to boost their squad. Mike Evans — if that’s who they want — could be scary on that offense.

I will add though — he’s a fiery character and he does allow opponents into his head. We saw that in the Duke Bowl game at the end of last season. While Johnny Manziel was doing a magic show, Evans was mostly anonymous. He let the guy covering him get to him. He couldn’t control his emotions. Manziel at one point got into his face — barking at him to get in the game.

In Seattle I think Evans would be fine. He’d be part of the aggressor — the team with the swagger and confidence. But coming up against Richard Sherman and co would be a challenge if he can’t keep things in check.

San Francisco moving up should be a formality — jut as they did last year to get Eric Reid. They can afford to do it. The only question is — how high do they jump?

Bradley Roby makes his case

Yesterday reports surfaced that the Ohio State cornerback had been charged with OVI (aka DUI).

It’s the kind of news that destroys a players draft stock. He’d have almost no time to recover from a story like this — just as people were starting to project him back inside the top-20.

Roby took to Twitter today to deny he’d been drinking. And to be fair, he makes a solid case:

We’ll see what impact this has on May 8th. For me, he’s still the best corner in the draft.

More Ja’Wuan James tape study

After Mark Dominik suggested Ja’Wuan James was a first round “lock” — I felt obliged to spend more time watching his tape last night.

The South Carolina game seemed like a good place to start. You can watch it for yourself in the video above.

I’m starting to see why Dominik would make that projection. James is just a really solid tackle. He doesn’t make too many errors, he has heavy hands and the footwork to excel quickly at the next level. He has long arms and an ideal frame. He might not be a special player — but he’s a plug-in-and-play tackle who can start as a rookie.

James always looked in control against the Gamecocks — flashing great footwork and body control. He consistently connected with blocks and while he doesn’t drive people off the ball — when he locks on he’s tough to negotiate. He very rarely over-extends or gets into an awkward position. He’s just a really consistent, solid offensive tackle.

Despite Gil Brandt’s suggestion James played well against Jadeveon Clowney — South Carolina didn’t pit Clowney against him once in the entire game. Which is telling. I would’ve thought they’d mix him around, but they kept him going 1v1 against Antonio Richardson (who struggled badly).

Richardson’s a man mountain but he lacks a lot of the technique and composure of James. He’s much more of a project and could require a year of top-level coaching before he’s ready to start. James on the other hand is ready to go.

This game shows how good Clowney is — he dominates throughout and is constantly around the ball. Tennessee true freshman Marquez North is also one to watch for the future (6-4, 215lbs).

But I can see why James could go in round one based on this tape. There’s nothing flashy about his play, but he gets the job done. Which, essentially, is what you want. I think he could play left or right tackle at the next level. He won’t be a brilliant, athletic future Hall of Famer — but over the 4-5 years of that first contract you’re going to get a really solid tackle.

I also watched some more Morgan Moses last night (vs Vic Beasley of Clemson) to compare him against James. Putting two players together like that really highlights the differences. Moses looked lethargic and clumsy. He didn’t give up any major plays against Beasley — but he just made everything look so difficult. I felt tired watching the tape as he laboured around the field.

This game was the week after he shut down Jeremiah Attaochu — and it bothered me. How can he look so dominant one week, and so shattered the next? I just get the sense you’ll get the same level of performance from Ja’Wuan James on a weekly basis. With Moses, he’s going to be up and down a lot. And you’ll have to permanently monitor his conditioning I fear.

If the idea is to get a nice, solid tackle who can start quickly and play at a certain level — for me James and Bitonio deserve higher grades than Moses. But I suspect all three will go in round one.

125 Responses to “Friday draft notes: Latimer, 49ers, Roby & James”

  1. Colin says:

    It’s almost a stone cold lock the Niners will trade back up. I expect them to double dip in round 1, unfortunately.

    • Belgaron says:

      Seems like the ’9ers try different strategies each year, last year going for the injured reserve approach. Might as well try the trade-up approach because you know they fear the Seahawks pillaging their practice squad. I have a hard time fearing them in the draft because Baalke has not been great. They’ve had so many picks, imagine if they’d hit on the same percentage as the Seahawks. It hasn’t shown up on the field because they were well stocked before Baalke arrived and they’ve had money to blow while “Miami Dolphins hat” has played through his rookie contract. If they do implode soon, it’s hard to see Baalke surviving the meltdown. Should be popcorn worthy though.

      • Arias says:

        Disagree, I think Baalke has done well via the draft from early picks. Their early pick (rounds 1-3) record since Baalke is better than Schneiders so it makes perfect sense for them to package later picks to move up.

  2. James says:

    Alas, Cody Latimer is long gone for the Seahawks. He is this year’s version of Sharrif Floyd last year…. a prospect that Rob identified early and we got all hot and bothered about….and then the rest of the world caught up and by draft time, we had no chance….same with Latimer. As we turn our sights elsewhere, it seems quite unlikely now that PCJS will go WR in R1. It will be OL or if one of the elite defensive talents drops, such as Shazier, Hageman, etc. Maybe a WR in R2, if Bryant is there, for example. (although, Matt Waldman, the national scout, was on the radio today, and he was of the opinion that Benjamin might still be there at #32, replaced in the pecking order by Latimer and therefore falling to the Seahawks)

  3. Cysco says:

    if SFO trades up it could be a blessing. They grab Evans and Latimer has a better chance of making it towards the end of RD 1.

    I wouldn’t be surprised if they’re showing interest in Latimer as their fallback plan in case the can’t swing a deal for Evans.

    Evans on the 49rs would suck, but Latimer on the Hawks could be equally scary.

    I can’t wait for draft night!

    • Mark says:

      I can’t see the 49ers taking a WR in the 1st. They have to play Gore, Davis, Crabtree and Boldin. That leaves only 11 personal (with whatever 3rd receiver) or sharing time with Boldin. Plus they seem to have more crucial holes at other positions. I can see them getting a CB and trading up to get their guy. Moving up in the 2nd round seems very likely also.

      Thinking about it though and SF isn’t worried about having to start their rookies and could easily let the WR sit or play minimal snaps this year. I still think they have bigger needs than WR.

      • Arias says:

        I can easily see the niners taking a wide receiver primarily because Crabtree is not a #1 receiver but is going to want to be paid like one. That makes the value of finding a #1 WR option in this draft all the more important. If they can trade up I see it as a toss up as to whether they’re targeting CB or WR, it really on how the picks in the top 10 fall. But there’s no doubt they’re looking for a franchise wide receiver they can get on the cheap to replace Crabtree. If Crabtree won’t accept #2 money to stay, then they’ll let him walk.

  4. Mattk says:

    I could have sworn Clowney went against James at least a few plays end of the SC game? Maybe it was another guy with dreads.

    I’d suggest watching one more tape on James that’d that I’d like to get your feedback on: against Missouri. The Missouri defense dominated most of the game. As a whole the entire Tennessee Pline played poorly, IMO.

  5. DawgDav says:

    Ja’Wuan James is an interesting case for Seattle. On one hand, it’s been “leaked” multiple times that the Seahawks would like to find a Right Tackle who could potentially replace Russell Okung or, more likely, provide some LT depth and contract negotiating leverage for Okung’s next contract. James is one of the few players who would be available at 32 who really has potential to play Left Tackle in the NFL (and I’d argue is almost a better fit as a LT than a RT in the NFL). On the other hand, although James is a fantastic pass blocking tackle, he really doesn’t run block particularly well or play with much of a mean streak. He successfully walls off players on occasion but rarely pushes anyone around. It seems like those are qualities the Seahawks seek out; at times in exchange for pass protection (see J.R. Sweezy, James Carpenter and Breno Giacomini).

    If they pick James I definitely wouldn’t be upset about it (and Russell Wilson should be happy) but it definitely seems like it would be a departure from their prior approach.

  6. Dtrain says:

    I put a lot of film time into OTs today and I have come to the conclusions that Mathews, Robinson, and Lewan are bonafide 1st rounders. The rest of this crop (James, Moses, Tiny, XSF, Bitonio, etc) are RTs and OGs that are not sure things. They all have holes in there games that could make them Moffitts and Carps (I still hold out hope for Carp…sigh). My hope is that the Hawks avoid any of these potential misfires and take some 3rd tier OLs in the 5th/6th. I’m pining for Brandon Thomas in the 5th. He would be a nice addition as a RT/LG type.

    • Darren says:

      The top three OL should be gone by pick 12 or so. The next three should be James, Bitonio and Z. Martin. Miami has to be a strong possibility for one; Tannehill went off track after the Jonathan Martin mishap. We could be left looking at xsf and moses by the time 32 rolls around.

      I still think WR is our biggest need. Best case scenario would be. hagemann at 32 ( or moncrief ), Coleman at 64 ( or Easley ), then stock the OL thereafterafter

      • Ben2 says:

        Get a franchise LT early and the rest just devop and sift for less premium OL positions

        • Darren says:

          Do you mean a quality RT ( like james ) who could swing over to back up Okung in a pinch?

          As for Rice the hope is he’s in good condition. He’s been pretty banged up the last couple years. He would be a good tutor and model experinced in the Bevel system to help a young WR (Coleman) in the preseason camp.

          An interestimg idea on . net was a left field pick at 32, buchanon at safety to allow Kam to swing down to cover LB and increase defensive flexibility and also get irvin into the rush the QB…

          • Dtrain says:

            That was actually on this site yesterday (it was me!)…it makes a lot of sense vs the schedule this year (GB, Den, SD, KC, NYG, Dal)…a lot of 11/12 personnel snaps to defend.

          • Arias says:

            Yeah, interesting rosterbation exercise on selecting Buchanon but I see the likelihood as minimal. Hard to imagine Quinn or PC deciding to tweak a strength of what has been working so well up to this point to select Buchanon. Normally you tweak defensive schemes to minimize flaws, and their base schemes are very basic and conventional. Adding such an exotic tweak to a strength of the D neither seems in character or prudent to replace Kam with a rookie so Kam can play linebacker. Comes across like more of a desperation move if the defense were struggling and there were a dearth of impact linebackers where you pick.

            • bigDhawk says:

              I concur. While Buchanon would be a luxury pick, remember we also have Shead on the roster who is a candidate to fill the role Darren is talking about.

            • CA says:

              Although I completely agree with everything that’s been said about Buchanon, you just can’t have enough wrinkles. I agree that Buchanon wouldn’t make sense for us earlier than R3

              • Ben2 says:

                If our FO views him as BP available at 64 I’d be cool with it – eg Buchanon at 64. I don’t think it will happen though….seems like rd 5/6 is our DB sweet spot….but We might have to start picking our DBS a bit sooner though, as the rest of the league is looking to bite our DB style. I’d love Pierre Desir or EJ Gaines w/our 4th rd pick but I think those guys will be gone in 3rd. We’ll see…we always seem to find DB late rd gold! Argggg…I’m getting pre-draft fatigue! I wish it would get here already

                • Arias says:

                  Buchanon’s draft stock has skyrocketed so much I doubt he’d even be there at #64 when there’s talk he could go in round one.

                  • Miles says:

                    Buchanon would be a good pick for a team that doesn’t have much going on at strong safety. Obviously Kam Chancellor is everything the Seahawks need in one and DeShawn Shead is a future starter at the position. Hell, he might even be able to start now.

                    The Seahawks could definitely use a solid backup FS but I really don’t think we need to worry about SS outside of competition from the UDFA market.

          • Ben2 says:

            No, I was thinking more about how we spent a top 10 pick on a LT (Okung – check) and now how we shouldn’t use any more 1st rounders on other OL positions (like we did with Carp). Now, due to Okungs fragility I guess I could get on board with a 1st used on an athletic RT that could swing over to LT. I don’t know if Moses has the athleticism for LT so I wouldn’t want him picked at 32 as a pure RT. If the FO thinks James is good enough to swing over to LT in a pinch then I could get down w/him in rd1.

  7. Jon says:

    If the 49ers want Evans and you go by the trade chart I find it quite unlikely. They would have to give up there 1st and both seconds to get to about #10. If Evans is set to go before thatthen it will only go up from there.

    • Arias says:

      Trading for Evans would be conditional upon him still being on the board at #10, if that’s who they’re targeting. Otherwise I can’t see them making that trade unless they value a CB that high.

  8. Cameron says:

    The buzz on twitter has the 49rs in cahoots with Oakland for the #5 pick. I can’t imagine what the compensation would be, but something in the neighborhood of Oak #1 for SF #1 #2 #2 and #3. Personally I think this would be a mistake for SF. They have more holes than many acknowledge. They have no difference makers at CB and their LB core suddenly looks average. In my mind they need to draft a RB early (2nd or 3rd) and could use an upgrade NT.

    A small move up the board makes sense. They could probably move up into the middle teens and target an OBJ or Latimer. If they move up any higher it would only be if Clowney or Mack for some unreal reason slid a bit.

    • Matt says:

      They have more holes than many acknowledge. They have no difference makers at CB and their LB core suddenly looks average. In my mind they need to draft a RB early (2nd or 3rd) and could use an upgrade NT.

      Agree with everything, but their need to draft a RB early. The 9ers are loaded at RB, with Gore, Hunter, James and Lattimore, and are looking to trade LaMichael James.

      • JeffC says:

        They also will have a big big problem when eventually replacing Justin Smith. Their offense will likely improve over the next few years but the defense should start to fall back toward most other teams. Not surprised by Baalke’s comments today regarding Aldon Smith being part of the family and not abandoning him. He really has no choice.

        Trading up to #5 and giving up most of his picks may come back to hurt them. No one is guaranteed, and the depth of this draft makes those second rounders REALLY valuable.

      • Cameron says:

        Gore is already old by RB standards and rumor has it SF is trying to trade LMJ. Never been a fan of Kendall Hunter and he’s always been a 3rd down/change of pace back anyways. Latitimore is the wild card. Obviously if he’s healthy he has the talent but him staying healthy can’t be taken for granted. I think they need and will go RB early. They’ll be targeting Tre Mason or Carlos Hyde.

    • Arias says:

      That would be insane to give up that sort of loot for #5. I really don’t see Baalke being that idiotic.

      • Cameron says:

        Insane? No, not really. 3 years ago the Falcons moved up from #27 to #6. The cost? Two #1′s, #2 and two #4′s.

        According to basic trade value charts this compensation (between Oak and SF) wouldn’t even be enough (1700 pts vs 1457 pts and that’s including the earliest SF 3rd round pick).

        Now, I already articulated why I wouldn’t trade that far up if I were SF, but I certainly wouldn’t call a move along those lines ‘insane’.

        • Arias says:

          Yes the Falcons were insane, but I’d argue too that 3 years ago the concrete implications of the rookie wage scale hadn’t yet manifest into conventional wisdom yet. No excuse for their insanity seeing how it’s their responsibility to understand economic cost/benefit of CBA changes. But it does give their insanity a tiny bit of perspective.

          OTOH, trading four picks in the first 3 rounds, an area where they’ve demonstrated drafting acumen in the past, now that the implications of the wage scale have calcified into conventional wisdom would IMO be pretty close to insane. Maybe insanity is a little strong, I’ll use ‘deranged’ instead to indicate temporary instead of permanent craziness.

          • Kevin says:

            I have to agree with you Arias. I very much doubt that SF goes for Evans at 10. If he is still around at 15 it is a different matter. Evans on SF would be terrifying.

            I find it much more likely that SF uses those second and third round picks to get an extra first round pick. The fifth year option is worth that much for them and they can definitely get value out of two late first round picks.

  9. CC says:

    Arrrrgggghhhhh – the more time before the draft the more of my favorites look less likely to be there at 32.

    I’ve like James since the combine – I hope somehow he is there at 32.

    • Arias says:

      Exactly. Pushing the draft back has benefited players like Latimore that’s for sure. I could see him as the 3rd wide receiver taken. The saving grace is that there is enough talent in this draft with first round grades that someone is likely to fall. It probably won’t be a pick-of-the-litter type that we’ve been zeroing in on here though.

      • CC says:

        You are right – I have to keep it together. I love this draft stuff, so that it is still 2 weeks away is tough.

        I fully expect Seattle to surprise us at 32

  10. James says:

    Spent last week looking at Moses, with him being suggested for the Seahawks, and the past couple of days looking at James, and James is the better athlete, quicker, better proportioned frame, moves his feet with more assurance, and definitely plays with more fire. How does anyone have Moses rated higher….perhaps no one does? James would be a very solid pick at #32. Starter from day one, a prototype right OT, and Bowie and Carp can battle it out at left OG.

  11. Mark says:

    I just saw on the NFL network where one of the analysts said no GM he spoke to gave Latimer a 1st round grade. He’s my favorite right now as I think he’s to most likely to still be available. I don’t think they spend a 1st on the OL when Cable is the coach. I don’t think Aaron Donald will make it past NYG, CHI and DAL. Shazier would be great, but he’ll probably be gone.

    Arrrrggggghhhhh, why is it taking so long for the draft to start!

    • JeffC says:

      Did they say what they generally don’t like about him?

    • Rob Staton says:

      I saw that piece on the NFL Network. Charles Davis, bless him, clearly hasn’t done a lot of work on this class outside of the top 15-20 players or guys he watched as a broadcaster. Daniel Jeremiah hasn’t offered one interesting or original thought this post season. The coverage on the whole has been so vanilla. More Mayock please.

    • CC says:

      I feel your pain!

  12. Miles says:

    On Latimer: Trade up.

    I would give up a considerable amount to do that.

  13. Chris says:

    The 49′ers, unfortunately, are currently the smartest drafting team in the NFL.

    Their ability to pick isn’t what sets them apart, it’s their management of draft capital.

    The absolute smartest “grand strategy” that exists in the draft is to trade current year picks for equivalent picks + bonus picks in latter years. The extra draft capital that can be received is the “interest payment” a team can receive for having front office/coaching continuity over time compared to teams that do not have it. Trading current picks away for future picks cashes in on the market inefficiency that exists due to managers/coaches that regularly feel they must sacrifice the long-term strength of their team for short-term strength in order to save their jobs. The Patriots have done this regularly over the years, and now unfortunately the 49′ers have figured out to do it as well, but with a better knack for picking players. The Seahawks have, so far, yet to take any real advantage of this vital arbitrage opportunity, which given the stability of our GM/coaching positions over time borders on the idiotic. Luckily the complete lack of an over-arching Seahawk strategy regarding maximizing their draft capital has so far been masked with the enormous (but ultimately unsustainable) success of our latter round draft picks (do you believe the Seahawks can come up with Wilsons, Chancellors and Shermans, EVERY year for now on? With the current Seahawk strategy towards draft capital they REQUIRE this success over future years to continue winning at the same pace they currently enjoy).

    The 49′ers, swimming in more draft picks than they need the last couple years (and make no mistake, these unneeded picks will simply be traded for even more future draft capital or bundled to make grabs at players they could otherwise never get) can also, unlike the Seahawks, simply welcome the departure of most FA’s … bringing in comp picks to help them even more unload and creatively use their mother lode of regular picks.

    Not to be a Debby-Downer, although it’s probably too late now, but once this team has paid ET, Sherman, and Wilson, it is in prime position to get BURIED by the 49′ers for years to come.

    • Robert says:

      I disagree with most of your post. The 9ers have blown a lot of picks including their fizzled 1st rounder from 2012. We have just transitioned from an epic rebuild into a maintenance phase called Win Forever. We red shirted most of last year’s Draft class and have amassed numerous comp picks for next year. We can expect multiple comp picks on an annual basis going forward because we are exceptional at drafting AND developing prospects. These players eventually command more $ than we are willing to pay and when they sign with other teams, we stockpile comp picks. We don’t just draft great players. We draft players with great potential AND develop them better than 31 other teams. That IS sustainable in my opinion. Every year since PCJS took over, we have had numerous player rise up from obscurity to contribute and/or play like superstars. I’ll wait for a year when that doesn’t happen before I begin to question the sustainability of our remarkable rise from ashes to the pinnacle of the NFL! And after this year, they’ll just be the 9ers, cuz we’re gonna OWN the number 49!

      • Michael (CLT) says:

        Development is the key differentiator. Seattle maximizes a persons talent. It does so while also instilling a competition psychology of competing with yourself.

        I would suggest Seattle would have just as much success, maybe more, with lower round picks and UDFA simply because they have less entitlement to overcome egoically.

      • Ben2 says:

        Preach Robert! The mental makeup and physical upside the Hawks look for coupled with our teams commitment to development is what sets us apart. Our late rd gems are thus NOT Aberrations but a product of our system. You mentioned 3 hawks but left out KJ (4th), Maxwell (6th), Smith (7th), Lane (6th), etc. Plus I think we’ll see some more late rd UDFA types blossom this year – not sure who but some candidates include: Scruggs, Mayowa, Simon, etc.

    • williambryan says:

      No doubt the 9ers work the draft better than anyone, but what good is it if they don’t draft the right players? It seems like they miss a fair amount of the time (not that every JS pick is a home run either…) and on top of that, as Louis Riddick always affirms, It doesn’t matter who you draft if your coaches don’t develop the players well. Carroll has proven to be great at this. Harbaugh and co.? Not so much. He inherited a stacked roster and they rely heavily on there best 22 with no real depth to speak of. What happens when Justin Smith is retired, Willis slows down, Gore is done, Boldin is old…? There best pass rusher is seemingly always on the verge of going to prison… The only things I see working in there favor are Colin Kaepernick and Eric Reid. Nothing about them scares me looking ahead. The Cardinals are the real threat.

    • EranUngar says:

      Very interesting post indeed.

      Looking at the 9ers roster you can’t help but notice the amount of high round picks populating it. It may be due to smart draft capital management or may also have something to do with being shitty for almost a decade and having those high 1st. rounders.

      The need to win today or get fired tomorrow is indeed a negative driving force for too many organizations. However, as you correctly pointed out, the Hawks do not have this situation.

      If i were you, this is were i’d stop and think – why is that? is it that they are stupid? or idiotic as you mentioned or is it that they evaluate the management of draft capital differently then you envision it?

      The key sentence is – “do you believe the Seahawks can come up with Wilsons, Chancellors and Shermans, EVERY year for now on?”

      Mind provoking indeed. it’s Wilson, Chancellor and Sherman but it’s also Maxwell and KJ and Smith. It’s Baldwin and Kearse. It’s even guys they picked out of nowhere like Browner, McDonald and Breno, Clem and even Lynch.

      Do you see a pattern forming?…I DO.

      The Seahawks roster build and management is not based on accumulating high draft capital. It’s either a revolutionary approach to evaluating talent that enables them to find those hidden gems or it’s the quality of training and coaching players to make them contribute.

      Either way, the answer to your biggest question must for the time being be YES.

      Yes, they can and they will come up with Wilsons Chancellors and Shermans every year. They will train KJs, Maxwells, Baldwins and Kearses every year. They will find Lynchs, Clems and Browners every year.

      Why won’t they? It’s what they are focused about and what they kept on doing from the start. It’s all out there on the field for you to see. That’s what they do. They are not the 9ers. They can make late rounders into major contributors while the 9ers need smart and meticulous draft capital to keep them alive. You don’t get that many hits by chance alone.

      Ohhh…and they did win the SB with those guys while the 9ers system has yet to reach it with thier superior draft quality. I can live with that.

      • Arias says:

        I agree with the OP and don’t believe for a second that drafting All-Pros in the 5th round is a sustainable strategy. It’s never happened in the history of the league, so JSPC would have to be revolutionary exceptions on the level of Billy Beane moneyball types but with the focus on player dev instead of advanced stats. Sure it’s possible, and from where we sit it’s fun to think it’s sustainable and they’ve got some tried and true formula for gem making that has revolutionized the game.

        But I’m just being realistic in saying that’s unlikely. Because the ability to uncover late round gems for short periods of time has occurred a number of times by former championship dynasties, but it never turned into a sustainable strategy even though their fans somehow thought so. It’s fun to think otherwise but it’s just far more likely that’s what is going on here.

        • EranUngar says:

          I actually agree with you. I don’t really think that this FO found a magic drafting formula.

          On the other hand, 2 or 3 late round starters may indeed be a fluke but when you see the number of late round/UDFA/players found out of nowhere turned major contributors, calling it just dumb luck is stupid.

          So, if it’s not a magic formula and it’s not just dumb luck, what’s left?

          IMO, what’s left is a whole team culture dedicated to advancing players. From always compete to a game plan that puts individual performance over complex team schemes etc.

          That IMO is sustainable and would bring better results then advanced draft capital management. Some teams may manage their draft capital better, we manage the drafted players better.

          • Arias says:

            There’s a big difference though between finding and developing late round starters and late round All-Pros. The latter really can’t be counted on as a ‘strategy’ and if they do then IMO for the reasons I already gave the strategy will fail. This is what you said “Yes, they can and they will come up with Wilsons Chancellors and Shermans every year.”

            As far as finding vs developing it can be argued that Kam and Sherm exceeded expectations because of the environment and coaching. But I’m pretty sure Wilson was already equipped to succeed regardless of who drafted him, and he proved it by winning the starting job out of camp.

            • Matt says:

              But I’m pretty sure Wilson was already equipped to succeed regardless of who drafted him, and he proved it by winning the starting job out of camp.

              PC let him compete and win the starting job as a 3rd round rookie, with an incumbent starter and “big” FA pick up. Not many teams would allow this competition to even take place let alone giving the 3rd rounder the starting job. Every player on the Hawks sees that the best player plays regardless of stature or salary. This is a crucial aspect of the winforever philosophy, as players are shown that their hard work can and will pay off. It’s also a big factor in seeing the late round picks and UDFA’s become impact players. Maybe PC/JS don’t have the magical formula to find late round talent, but they do have the winning formula in developing a speck of talent into valuable role players,starters, pro bowlers and all pros.

              • Arias says:

                What I’m saying is that Wilson would have succeeded wherever he went, even if he went to say Philly where the Eagles were planning on drafting him too, and made to sit behind Vick for a year. He still would have broke out this year like Foles broke out when he got his shot.

                It wasn’t the Carroll Compete Forever philosophy that made Wilson a success as a starting QB. You could say it was responsible for letting him succeed as a rookie, but Wilson was already wired for success prior to coming here. His success wasn’t scheme dependent or requiring he be coached up by this particular coaching staff.

                • Matt says:

                  Agreed. Wilson is big time, and most likely would’ve succeeded anywhere. My point pertains less to Wilson and more to Kam, Sherm, Maxwell, Baldwin, Kearse, Sweezy, Smith, KJ, Lane, Bowie and so on. The whole “chip on your shoulder” type guys who come in and work on their craft will get the opportunity to play major roles, with the best players getting playing time. PC/JS have repeatedly shown that it doesn’t matter what you’ve done in the past, where you came from, or how much you’re paid. The best players play. That’s a big incentive to work hard to improve for every player on the Seahawks roster. Prime examples: Harper(4th rnd) getting cut while 2 former UDFA’s play major roles, Mark Legree(5th rnd) getting cut while UDFA Jeron Johnson makes the team. i could continue but you get the point.

                • Robert says:

                  Yeah but, Sherman was mediocre at Stanford…

      • CC says:

        Seattle doesn’t have to hit on every 5th rounder every year. But if they hit on one or two lower round guy a year who makes the team that gives them depth and room for guys to learn. They all don’t have to be starters right away now, but can come in if needed.

        This is now the difference because you have really good players at every spot. In 2010 – they needed to hit many times. Now they just have to get maybe 3 guys each draft to make the team. Those draft choices, FA, UDFA – will get you the depth.

    • Cysco says:

      lol, BURIED by the 49′ers for years to come? Come on man.

      Seattle is the most talented, deepest and second youngest team in the league. (SanFran is the 7th oldest) For Seattle to get buried by SanFran one of two things is going to have to happen.

      1. Seattle needs to shed talent to the point that they have less talent than San Fran. I don’t see this happening. Seattle will lose guys, but they’ve proven the can bring new guys in and train them up to take over. Seattle’s elite talent isn’t going anywhere and will all be wrapped up to long term deals.

      2. San Fran increases its talent, youth and depth to the point that they just pass up Seattle. I find this hard to believe too given their last couple drafts. I’m sorry, but I don’t see San Fran pulling elite talent out of the draft on a consistent basis to make me fear them having a few extra picks. If team quality were determined by high picks, the Rams would be Super Bowl champs.

      San Fran is good. Probably top-3-4 in the league, but they’ve got some age issues to deal with in key positions along with the the prospects of replacing Aldon Smith. They’ll continue to give Seattle a run for their money, but short of injuries, I just can’t see the tides changing in the NFCW.

      If anything, you should fear the rest of the NFCW. ARZ and STL are legit. For the next few years the winner of the NFCW may be the best team in the league, but their record won’t show it since the division will spend the year beating the living crap out of each other. Whichever team comes out of the NFCW will have a hard time keeping home field advantage.

    • Arias says:

      Loved the insight in your post, particularly with regards to the arbitrage opportunity afforded for an elite and stable management to parlay into future picks for stockpiling purposes. Yes, the niners do seem very good at this aspect of the draft. Unfortunately for them, the overall return they’ve gotten on who they’ve drafted doesn’t match that par excellence and 2012 appears a lost cause and wasted draft for them. For whatever reasons their scouting and talent evaluation for later round picks has been miserable even if they can spot talent in the earlier rounds. Maybe they’re factoring their strength and weakness in these areas into their drafting strategy too to exploit as an arbitrage opportunity based on the rumors swirling that they’re looking to package a bonanza to trade up.

      Because of this I don’t share your overall pessimism since reality is at odds with your last sentence. It makes sense that once you lock down superstar contracts it magnifies the importance of replacing the rising cost of serviceable vets with equally serviceable rookies. The return this front office has gotten from the draft on rookie contract players is what separates them from the niners. For the niners to supersede us they would need to not only sustain their excellent early draft record, but vastly improve their late round player evaluations. Until we see evidence they’re capable of doing this, it’s hard to buy into your doomsday analysis.

      • Miles says:

        I agree with most of the replying posts in this thread. The 49ers are incredibly good at stockpiling picks while retaining a high-quality roster. I mean, it’s been impeccably done. But one thing to keep in mind is that when Harbaugh joined the franchise, he acquired a pretty talented roster as it was. They already had Vernon Davis and Michael Crabtree and most of their defensive pieces were already there. Harbaugh had a tremendous advantage over Carroll when he came in, in that there weren’t many holes to fill. The coaching staff was simply a shambles. The Seahawks, on the other hand, took a roster that was arguably the absolute worst in the league and in three years built the best cumulative talent to be put on the field in the last decade, maybe more.

        You can also see that the Niners haven’t drafted very well. They’ve hit on a few players who are going to be keys going forward, like Colin Kaepernick (who is just an athletic freak), Aldon Smith (who is a top three pass-rusher in the league but his time with the niners may be up), Chris Culliver (another good player who is troubled), . But when you look at the high picks who haven’t worked out for them like AJ Jenkins and LaMichael James, and consider how old their roster is, you can see that THEY have the formula that is unsustainable. Once the Seahawks pay their core stars, they are going to keep drafting well, in my opinion. What are the 49ers going to do? That’s a big question right now, because once they tie up Colin Kaepernick and maybe Michael Crabtree on a long-term deal, they won’t be able to sign very many guys without some serious attrition to their defensive side of the ball. And they won’t be able to keep drafting like this and continue to be an NFC superpower, that’s for sure.

        That said, i really did like the 49ers draft last year. Now, whether those picks pan out is pretty suspect. They drafted a lot of guys with high upside but who had big question marks coming out of college. If Lattimore can play as well as he was expected to before his injury, then the Niners can make a seamless transition from Frank Gore. But that’s easier said than done. If Tank Carradine can do half what Aldon Smith does, then the Niners will have a great player for a minimal price. The one pick I really liked and stung me because I wanted the Hawks to get him, was Corey Lemonier. I just think that guy is going to be a great defensive end. He has all the tools, the proto-typical LEO. To me he has a really good chance to have a great career. But him, along with Eric Reid, are the only two players in the 49ers 2013 draft i feel that way about.

        • AlaskaHawk says:

          A lot of high draft capital was made with the Alex Smith trade. Now if Smith had stayed with the team maybe they have a superbowl ring by now. Kap is a better athlete, but is he really a better passer? I don’t have the stats in front of me but my gut feeling is that given equal protection and receivers that Smith is slightly better passer and Kap a better runner.

  14. Robert says:

    I’ll take Marquez North, the 6’4″ 215 pound freshman with 4.4 speed and great hands. He high points, wins 50/50 balls and makes spectacular plays. He is special!

    • Robert says:

      BTW…he’s the WR that flashes in the video clip. He makes numerous extraordinary plays on contested balls including a phenomenal catch of a long ball towards the end that sets up the last second winning field goal.

  15. EranUngar says:

    I am not sure i agree with the basic proposition that our “needs” are what we think they are. I think the picture the FO sees could be different.

    Base line: This team won the SB last year. While you should always strive to improve and even SB champions are never perfect on every position i’ll take last years roster as a “good enough to win the SB” and look at our needs compared to that team.

    WR – A major need? really? – NO. We won last year with Tate, Baldwin and Kearse. Tate left. Harvin and Rice are back. Good enough. We have 4 NFL tested and hardened quality receivers. Rice, Baldwin, Harvin and Kearse. Those 4, when healthy are really top level by any standard. Even any 3 of those are a great start. With Luke entering his 2nd season we’ll have more then enough talent to catch the ball. The quality of this year’s receivers makes it very tempting to land a quality talent and we should but making it our greatest need – NO.

    OL – A major need? maybe. We lost our starting RT. Yes, that guy we got a few years ago our of the Green bay practice squad. It takes a year to train a ZBS offensive lineman. Baily and Bowie had that year. This is Cable’s kingdom. He may be perfectly happy with the guys he already has. There were quite a few tackles and guards in FA and they made no attempt to even kick the tires. What we all see as a need TC may see as a perfect starting roster with minor need for late round depth to train.

    DL – A major need? could be. We lost 2 key players Red and Clem. The big question is really what do we have with Scruggs, Hill, Mayowa, Boatright and Jesse? If those guys are ready to step in and perform at the highest level then life is beautiful. If there is uncertainty regarding those guys then this may be our deepest hole or need. The actions taken during FA makes me feel that if Hageman is there at 32 they will not think twice.

    CB – surprised? it’s a need. As great as the LOB is, we lost Browner and Thurmond. Those are key loses. Max stepped in and made us forget about Browner but who will step in if he is hurt? who is there to take over at Nickle? We are great at training those guys and the next one in will probably be fine but for me it’s just as great a need as WR.

    LB – NO. Actually, with K.J. and Smith contracts and the future cap needs this may be a big hidden need that we may need to start addressing now.

    Looking at the above – don’t be surprized if the first 2 picks end up not including WR or OL. If the big talent is there it could be DL and CB or LB.

    • Robert says:

      Good post. I agree that Hageman is high on our board. Shazier is likely highly regarded as well. I am sure they would love to have Latimer, but he’ll be gone. What are your thoughts on Tuitt, if Hageman is gone? He might have been a top 15 pick if he had posted his 2012 stats in 2013! I wonder what they think about Easley’s knees?

      • EranUngar says:

        Are you asking me or Rob?

        I will not pretend to be able to evaluate those guys. (My strengths are in big picture view rather then player analysis) Both have some medical question marks. Tuitt issues seem temporary but i did not like his tape as much as Hageman or Easly. Easly’s knees are a serious consideration. One ACL is an issue, 2 of them is a major consideration. I wouldn’t invest a 1st. round pick on those knees but that’s just me. If i did know it all i’ll be scouting for the Hawks. LOL.

      • Kenny Sloth says:

        I’m really not a fan of Tuitt, the tape just doesn’t match the numbers, for me.

    • Cysco says:

      Good post Eran.

      I agree that the Seahwaks dont’ have any major “needs.” I like to think of it as major “wants”

      Short of replenishing depth at many positions, I don’t see any major hole on that roster. I imagine the FO looks at our roster and says “hey, we’re pretty good. How/where can we get even better”

      This offense struggled at times last year. (yes injuries played a big role) One area that most on this blog agree could help improve the offense is a big receiver. In fact, it’s probably the one type of player that could make the single biggest impact on the team. Is it required? Nope. Would it be nice to have a big, fast mismatch making receiver for Russell to roll with? (I’m looking at you Cody Latimer) You bet.

      Would it be nice to improve the overall quality of the offensive line? Indeed. Is it a major need? Well that one is arguable, but none of us would argue that it sure would help.

    • bigDhawk says:

      I agree with the thought process here. I also see LB and CB as our biggest roster needs at this moment. This is not to say that need has necessarily anything to do with our draft process, but what about a player like Jason Verret at 32 as a plug and play nickle CB? Being in DFW I got to see a fair number of his gams this year at TCU and the guy is a baller, with a huge, Seahawky shoulder chip and athleticism to spare. I know we have Auguste who will likely compete for that role this year with Lane, but everything I’vr seen of Verrett impresses me. He considers himself a DB and not just a CB, and could also be a candidate to back up ET at FS.

      • CA says:

        Fellow DFW hawk fan: I’ve always liked the idea of picking someone up who can backup ET with how critical of a position it is in this defense. If he can also play nickel CB or any CB for that matter, that’s fantastic. I’m keeping my fingers crossed on Tharold Simon still, but someone who can back up Earl at FS or play nickel sounds great.

        to the OP: I say that OL and WR are very upgradeable, considering that upgrading this offense is the best way to take a step forward.
        Drafting defensively, particularly at the DL or LB position could also continue to put this team over the top and prevent taking any steps backwards

        As always, outstanding work Rob, this is much appreciated with 2 hr delayed flights back to the pacific NW

      • Miles says:

        I would say that it would be hard to see taking a LB or DB in the first round because the Seahawks have been so adept at developing those players from later round/UDFA picks. The only way I would draft one is if a special one fell to them that they just couldn’t say no to. There are ZERO players like that in this DB class. There is one in the LB class: Shazier. Otherwise, I’m taking the best available WR or OL. If we see a worst-case scenario where they all get swiped up, I’d like to see the Seahawks trade down if possible. It also looks like we have more options than the ‘sexy’ players. Ju’Wuan James, for example, could be a highly considerable option at #32. Obviously you’d have to consider taking Hageman if he was there as well.

        • bigDhawk says:

          Granted, we are awesome at developing pro bowl players LB and DB from unknown prospects, but ET3 was a first round pick. I also agree Shazier is a solid first round pick, but that Verrett is not too far off. A few numbers to consider: Verrett ran a very ET3-esque 4.38 40, bested only by Justin Gilbert by 1/100 of a second, with a 1.47 split, tied for first with Bradley Roby, whom I believe Rob likes as the best CB in the draft. At only 5’9″ tall Verrett had a 39 vert, tied for 3rd among DBs with Keith McGill, to whom Verrett gives up 6″ of height. His Broad jump was 10-8, in a four way tie for third with players like Kyle Fuller and SJB, closely behind leader Pierre Desir at 11-1. Verrett is short and does not have long arms, but his measurables scream explosiveness, and his tape bears that out. He was banged up at times during 2013, but when healthy he jumps off the screen.

          By comparison, Shazier ran a 4.38 40 with a 1.56 split at his pro day and a 42 vert with a 10-10 broad at the combine. So no, Verrett is not Shazier, but he is not far off either. As one of the first to mention Latimer’s name on this board as just an outside-of-the-box idea back in January, I’m similarly throwing Verrett’s name out there as just an alternative to the handful of names we are currently talking about for the ‘Hawks at 32. Will we pick him? Probably not, but I think he is an option that is at least somewhat discussion-worthy. Of course if Hageman is on the board at 32 like you said, that’s a no-brainer.

          • Miles says:

            Those are impressive numbers. To be honest I haven’t watched Verrett’s tape all that much. Do you think Verrett is a similar prospect to the honey badger?

            • bigDhawk says:

              While Mathieu and Verrett are certainly similar in physical stature with similar athleticism, I think Verrett is head and shoulders above Mathieu in football IQ and overall maturity. In terms of Seahawky character and savy, Verrett is way ahead of Mathieu. Verrett could certainly succeed in the multi-task DB role in which Arizona utilizes Mathieu, but I also see him succeeding as a pure slot nickle back taking over WT3s role seamlessly, and as a special teams stud. Is that worth a pick at 32? That’s debatable but if he can become that slash DB player that Mathieu kind of is, to the point of being a viable back-up of ET, then it’s certainly worth considering.

    • Rob Staton says:

      Kearse, Baldwin and Rice are all free agents next year. Receiver is a need.

      • EranUngar says:

        Sorry for not mentioning that. Of course it’s a need. Is it the big first major need? Is it way ahead of say DL,OL,LB…i don’t know. Before resigning Rice FA interest seemed dedicated mainly to DL and WR so it may still be out there. After Rice? who knows.

      • bigDhawk says:

        I think both Baldwin and Kearse stand a good chance of being retained at a reasonable cost, so it might not end up being much of a need.

        • Rob Staton says:

          But the chances are they’ll test the market. They’d be daft not to. The Seahawks won’t break the bank for either — and as soon as they test the market, you run the real chance of losing them.

          There’s every chance Seattle could be down to Harvin next off-season as their only veteran receiver. And he needs to stay healthy this year too. Investing in a receiver on a cheap 5-year contract (or 4-year if it’s round two) is incredibly likely. It’s a need.

    • Arias says:

      What I really think you’re missing from your ‘big picture’ breakdown is the failure to account for the best way to address needs VIA the draft. The DL, LB, and CB positions could be areas of need for the reasons you stated, but are these needs better addressed in the 1st or 2nd rounds than the needs we have at OL and WR when the latter two position groups are the strength of the draft? Isn’t it more likely they’ll be able to find replacements at CB and LB in later rounds than at the other positions?

      I’ll point out that moves made in free agency provide clarity as to what a skilled FO plans to focus on in the draft. The re-signing of Bennett, the loss of Tate, and the loss of Giacomini speak louder for what their drafting strategy will be than any other empirical barometer we have.

      You could argue that CB class is deep too, but drafting one of the 3 CBs with first round grades would just be stupidity of the highest order IMO. If it’s a deep CB class then you do what you’ve always done. You maximize advantage of that depth by stockpiling CBs from the later rounds that could make it, and there are a ton of them.

      • EranUngar says:

        IMO, FA moves are with the roster and the type of players we were trying to sign indicate the following -

        Resigning Benett and the players looked at during FA indicate that the main point of interest is rebooting the DL.

        Letting Breno leave is indication that we feel fine with our current next man up on the OL.

        Tate – Same as Breno and with Rice back we are ok for 2014.

        I’m not saying they will go after a CB/LB in the first 2 rounds but if a great value one is there say at 64 they won’t hesitate in drafting one just due to need at other positions.

        • Arias says:

          Right, but they still were able to re-sign Bennett even if they weren’t able to sign others. So that need is mitigated some by how great a player Bennett is. There really no indication on a plan to ‘reboot’ anything on the DL.

          OTOH they were not able to re-sign Tate in spite of Schneider saying his signing was a high priority. That makes WR a strong position of need. Unfortunately, Harvin’s health history means he cannot be relied upon to replace Tate. And Tate’s production needs replacing.

          They weren’t able to re-sign Giacomini but that doesn’t mean they are ‘comfortable’ with the next man up, it just means Giacomini wasn’t the caliber of player they felt was worth what he was going to command to sign. It would be negligent to be ‘comfortable’ with unproven late round players that didn’t play better than Giacomini last year to expect they’ll be able to this year. I’m sure they’re far from comfortable given what a wasteland this offensive line was last year.

          They only pick a DL’man IMO if they’ve got a high round grade on him and WR and OL high graders are gone in the first. To pick a CB in the 2nd would mean that the high round grades on WR, OL, DL, and LB were gone. I think that is just too many position groups, some of which have depth, to be gone by #64. Possible but not likely.

    • Cha says:

      Great post, Eran. Just one aside though – with the Seahawks talent and depth the draft isn’t about 2014 as much as it is for other teams higher up the board.

      Your point about the LBs is a great one – if someone like Shazier is there at 32 the FO should definitely consider taking him.

      And I’m all for drafting more DL and DE depth if the FO determines good value is there at 32, ie if they feel good about Easly’s knees. I think Brooks also can contribute in 2014, just based on what we saw in 2013 preseason.

      But the future point also applies to OT and WR:

      -WR Rice is on a one year deal and Baldwin is on a tender. WRs take time to develop and as Rob has repeatedly pointed out, the WR class is so deep and rich, if one of the tops falls to 32 it may be the best choice for the Hawks.

      -OL the Okung question looms over the OL. Will he have another year of injuries? Bowie and Bailey will fit in great but depth beyond 2014 needs to be addressed sooner rather than later. Especially IMO with the Hawks seeing transition in the RB position the next couple years.

  16. jake206 says:

    Lattimer will be a 9er, not sure why. But his name is rising, and 49ers are the type of team to make a big splash in draft. Particularly seeing how they’re opening a new stadium. Hope Seahawks can find someone comparable.

    • Cysco says:

      I wouldn’t bank on that. All the chatter from the last couple days points towards the 49′ers looking to move up. Perhaps as high as #5.

      Seems like they’re looking at getting one of the top-tier receivers. If they’re successful, they won’t be drafting Latimer.

      Seems like the interest in Latimer is their back-up plan in case they can’t nab Evans, Lee, Watkins, OBJ.

      • Philip says:

        It’d be difficult for the 49ers to get to #5. Even if they offered Oakland all 10 of their tradable picks this year, Oakland would still need to give them a discount. The #5 is worth 1700 points while the 49ers’ 10 picks (not counting the compensatory pick) are worth 1650 combined.

        Oakland might make that trade, but I doubt San Francisco would. They just need more picks than that.

        They could add picks from next year, but their first round pick is likely to be #30 again :) , and that doesn’t add a ton of value (620 points, discounted for being a year off and in a draft that likely will be weaker than this one). So they’d really need to add a player or two. But who?

        I think it’s more likely that they trade up to the high teens or low 20s with Latimer as their target.

        • Arias says:

          The Raiders would be idiots not to take all ten of the niners draft picks this year in trade for their #5. Absolute morons.

          You’re treating the points allocated on drafting charts as gospel when they’re not and were never intended to be. They can offer a good ballpark guestimation but where they fall flat is their failure to account for the particulars of a team’s unique individual circumstances that would make their pick less valuable than average, therefore worth less points to them, while increasing the value of the quantity of picks. The Raiders are in exactly that position with their lack of depth from salary cap hell making the holes they have to fill across the board paramount. If they can extract a bounty like that they should, and I believe they would in a heartbeat, take it.

          • Miles says:

            This.

          • Philip says:

            Nope, not taking the draft value chart as gospel. Just as a “good ballpark guestimation” (as you say) to show the approximate relative values of the picks involved.

            In fact, you’re just repeating in essence what I said — that Oakland would be much more likely to agree this trade than San Francisco. You just said it with more bluster and absolutes.

            • Arias says:

              That seems at odds to what you said here:

              “It’d be difficult for the 49ers to get to #5. Even if they offered Oakland all 10 of their tradable picks this year, Oakland would still need to give them a discount. The #5 is worth 1700 points while the 49ers’ 10 picks (not counting the compensatory pick) are worth 1650 combined.”

              If they offered all 10 of their picks to Oakland I’m saying that it’d be easy to get to #5. But you said it would be ‘difficult’ based on these chart numbers.

              • Philip says:

                To clarify, I believe it’d be difficult for them to get to #5 because San Francisco would be reluctant to offer what it would take to move up that far.

                Perhaps “difficult” isn’t the best word choice, though — if they want Evans bad enough, they do have the assets to get there. I should have said I find it “unlikely” that they’ll get to #5 based on the what it would cost, even if the draft value chart is only a “ballpark guestimation” of what that cost would be.

  17. Ben says:

    I expect us to take the BPA on our board, and if he’s not there, then we’ll move down. I’d be THRILLED with Bitonio and Jarvis Landry as our 1st two picks. But if Shazier or Latimer is on the board at #32, it’d be hard not to take them.

    Rob. Who do you have ranked higher on you’re board, Bitonio or Latimer.

  18. Kenny Sloth says:

    James blocked Clowney once and stonewalled him. I like his pass pro a lot. He would already be acclimated to the right side. I can see why he’d be an option for us. I watched the tape before reading the article and was definitely going to mention North. That boy good.

    • Miles says:

      North does look like a really good player!

      The thing about James is that, like Rob states, he’s not going to push players off the line. He is not a dominant run-blocker and I just feel like those are the kinds of players the Hawks are going to look for to play right tackle. If all you’re expecting him to do is be a great pass-blocker, then he’s a great fit. But if you want to improve the running game, I don’t see it happening with James.

  19. oz says:

    So many good players in the second tier of the first round. It’s going to be an exciting draft. GO HAWKS!!!!!!

  20. Cysco says:

    Latimer
    Bitonio
    Shazier
    Hageman

    Wildcard:
    Easley
    Trade

    All these options seem like seahawk moves. Unique physical attributes, “football smarts”. Potential to be elite with proper training.

    • Ben2 says:

      Cysco was that list in order of preference? I think those are the guys I have become most enameled with but in this order: Hageman, Latimer, Shazier, Bitonio

      • Cysco says:

        Good question Ben. Hadn’t really thought about it but I think I just naturally listed them in my order of preference.

        I’m a big fan of all the guys listed, but Latimer just has something special about him. He seems like another Christine Michael type pick.

        I like the Bitonio pick because I believe Rob when he says you can plug him in and assume he’ll be a quality starter for 10 years.

        Shazier seems like a Bruce Irvin kinda pick. Sure he might have a few issues to work out, but he can tilt the field with his speed.

        Hageman doesn’t have the same athletic freak feeling for me but he would be a solid player with a high floor.

        Easley, if healthy could be the steal of the draft.

  21. TJ says:

    If the argument is that the 49ers might trade up because a lot of the players that they draft won’t make the roster, why can’t we make the same argument for the Seahawks trading up? Seattle has a very good, deep roster. There is no way all of their picks make the roster. If they identify a player that they really want, I wouldn’t be surprised if they move up a few spots to get him.

    • CC says:

      Good points! Likely only 3-4 of the guys they draft and UDFA make this team – they will have to be special. But I think they are more likely to move down than up since the draft is really deep.

    • Arias says:

      Because the Seahawks don’t have as many picks to trade.

      • Miles says:

        The only player I can see the Seahawks trading up for is Latimer. But I only see them doing this if he reaches somewhere around the 25th pick. Considering the Seahawks have six picks in the draft this year, they’d likely have to trade half their picks this year to make that move up the board. Most of them being the earlier ones. It would probably look like:

        Seahawks get:
        WR Cody Latimer, Indiana

        Team X get:

        Round 1 (32)
        Round 4 (132)
        Round 5 (146)
        Round 5 (172)

        Either that or the Seahawks could give up their 2 to do this.

  22. CC says:

    I know where our “needs” are, but I won’t be surprised if they pull a Bruce Irvin this year and pick a guy that no one else has rated as high as they. Marcus Smith, Martavis Byrant, James Gayle, Kareem Martin and of course Domnique Easley. All of these guys are more 2nd rounders – regardless of the hype – than first rounders. Speed, length, quickness and grit.

    • Miles says:

      If the Seahawks are out of great options in the first round, I’d love for them to trade down about 10 spots and select Martavis Bryant or Dominique Easley. That would be maximizing value for high-upside players.

  23. Ben2 says:

    There was a Deone Bucannon thread earlier and while I don’t think SS is a need area, a SS the hawks might target (who could be had later than Bucannon) is Ahmad Dixon out of Baylor. I believe PC tried to recruit him at while at USC too!

    • Ben2 says:

      Hey does anybody know anything about Trevor Reilly out of Utah? Looks like an ideal LEO -6’5″ 255 and he played a hybrid role in the Utes defense. A little long in the tooth at 26 but maybe in play at 64? Any scouting reports out there on this guy?

  24. Colin says:

    It would be bad for Seattle if Teddy Bridgewater fell out of the 1st round. Hopefully that doesn’t happen.

    • bigDhawk says:

      Bortles, Manziel, Bridgewater, and Carr all going in the first round would bode very well for us. Throw in someone trading up to take AJ McCarron toward the end of the first and there should be a very nice player waiting for us at 32.

      • Colin says:

        Carr has a better shot of going in round 1, IMO. McCarron is pretty meh. Nothing special at all.

  25. James says:

    Some new names for R2….

    - We have pretty-well covered the likely suspects for the Seahawks in R1 (Bitonio, Latimer, Benjamin, Moncrief, Hageman, Tuitt, Shazier, James, Moses, XSF); perhaps the only other Seahawky guy who has some R1 possibility is Demarcus Lawrence, the Boise St Leo.

    - But it seems to me that we have primarily only discussed the R2 WRs in depth (Bryant, Coleman, Matthews, Robinson, Landry). There are some really nice looking OG prospects: Gabe Jackson, Marcus Martin, Cyril Richardson, Trai Turner, plus a couple of OTs, Jack Mewhort and LDT; and perhaps a couple of Leo’s as well: Jeremiah Attaochu, Trent Murphy, Kyle Van Noy, Marcus Smith. In particular, it seems clear that a starting-caliber OG could be had at #64, which might impact how PCJS prioritize the #32 pick….eg, go with Mocrief over an OL in R1, knowing you can land a top OG in R2.

  26. god shammagod says:

    Now that we have Jeff Ireland in-house, is there a remote possibility that the seahawks FO works out a trade for Dion Jordan? Have you heard anything about Jordan’s availability, or more importantly, his cost?

    • Rob Staton says:

      I think Miami is looking for a first rounder. If they’re willing to dump a #3 pick after one year, that raises serious alarm bells for me.

  27. Kenny Sloth says:

    One of my favorite sleepers in this draft is Bennett Jackson of ND. He’s a former WR and team captain. He’s really raw, and might not have the length we’re looking for with only 31 3/8 arms, but he’s very instinctive (not yet anticipatory) and has decent ball skills and agility. I would like to see him to us in the sixth round to play nickle in the future.

  28. [...] is Tennessee tackle Ja’Wuan James. Most people expected him to be a second round pick — so it was interesting to see Mark Dominik refer to him as a first round lock a few days ago. Now Adam Beasley from the Miami Herald is reporting the Dolphins have five first round grades on [...]