Guest post: Kenny Sloth on linebackers

February 20th, 2017 | Written by Rob Staton

This article was written by contributor Kenny Sloth

Every year at his end of the season conference, Pete Carroll has stated several target areas he has in mind for the upcoming draft. One of these target areas was extrapolated upon, at length, by Carroll, who had a great deal to say about his linebacker depth and the competition behind his all-everything starters. And Pete would never lie to us, so they are definitely, definitely, for sure, going to pull the trigger on a LB. 100% positive.

To better prepare myself for that eventuality (and to give you guys a reason to think I’m cool), I took to the Draft Breakdown archives, in an effort to familiarize myself with some of these players’ traits and skill levels before having quantifiable athletic traits to apply to each tester and wanted to share my findings. Note; I reviewed only prospects that had at least some 2016 game tape available at Draft Breakdown and were listed as ‘pure’ LBs (hence Haason Reddick’s notable absence).

As always, the views below are based on my own observations and evaluations and do not reflect any insider information or Rob’s own opinions of these prospects.

TO THE LIST!

1. Reuben Foster, Alabama- Great fit in a 3-4 or 4-3 defense seems destined for the top 12. Cerebral and a leader. A true Blue Chip Draft Prospect. Just pray he doesn’t end up in the NFC West somehow.

2. Jarrad Davis, Florida- 4-3 MIKE or 3-4 WILL. This guy is a plug and play LB that can feature at MLB or WLB in Seattle’s 4-3 under. Could slip slightly and would be a steal at our native pick.

3. Zach Cunningham, Vanderbilt- 3-4 ILB or 4-3 OLB. Cunningham is a very smooth athlete which lends itself nicely to his versatility. He reminds me of KJ Wright because of his incredibly long arms. Can play soft and quiet at times, which is wild because there are some hitters on that Vandy D — but rarely is Cunningham out of position. Sidesteps most blocks instead of stacking-and-shedding. A leader on that defense. He maybe can’t play SAM as well as some would hope but I personally view the strongside as better for the lengthy, slower, KJ Wright, while a more athletic WLB would have better range than the hyper-cerebral Wright.

4. Kendell Beckwith, LSU- One of the best options for 3-4 ILB in this draft. Listed at 255lbs with the giant bubble to match; Beckwith is the definition of Thicc. Sneaky quick with an eyebrow raising ability to knife into the backfield. Great strength to fight off blocks, never more evident than against Wisconsin’s semi-pro OL. Needs to clean up his tackling technique (he tackles like Earl with 40 extra pounds, diving for the ankles).

5. Jordan Evans, Oklahoma- 4-3 OLB, 4-3 ILB, 3-4 ILB, 3-4 OLB. If we happen to miss out on Zach Cunningham, I’ve recently stumbled upon under-the-radar prospect Jordan Evans. Hard to believe there is so little hype around such a well-respected player on a championship contender — but such is draft analysis. I digress. Evans plays with ferocious attitude making tackles from his knees and always leaving everything on the field. In his obvious athleticism, I believe he could play anywhere among a LB corps (with the right coaches). Oklahoma used him as a moveable chess piece at LB last year. Watch him single-handedly blow up that fumblerooski against Auburn in the Sugar Bowl to see how he can be used in different positions. Later in the same game he has an astounding redzone, 3rd down stop against a flying Auburn QB. The more I watch, the more I’m screaming “Why is no-one talking about this guy?!”.

6. Paul Magloire Jr., Arizona- 3-4 OLB or 3-4 ILB. A potential fit for the Seahawks at SAM or WILL, I don’t think Magloire has the chops to play inside at the next level. Decent get-off but gets stymied by blockers occasionally. He can be blocked out of plays with relative ease. Excellent second effort and pursuit, never count him out of a play. Hard tackler — needs to work on his coverage but showed well enough in that department at the Shrine Game to warrant his selection.

7. Anthony Walker Jr., Northwestern- Seems capable of playing 4-3 MLB or 4-3 OLB — he works decently at the line but I like this type of player off the ball. Recommended to the blog by several users, Walker Jr. is anomalous to me. He has excellent feet and seems quite intelligent in his on-field communication. He displays a highly competitive style and has a high motor. And yet, despite his obvious knowledge of the game, he is often out of position or over-pursuing. He strikes me as a leader and perhaps the thrill of being a rookie and doing one job will emend these bad habits.

8. Jalen Reeves-Maybin, Tennessee- 4-3 WOLB. Twitchy, athletic LB, closes in a hurry. One to watch at the combine. Great feel for zone coverage. Great leaping ability but lacks the strength to attack the line of scrimmage.

9. Raekwon McMillan, Ohio State- Possibly limited to a pure 3-4 MLB. Real issues with backside pursuit. When he is allowed to patrol the A gaps he is a great run-stuffer but seems ultimately limited by his inability to recognize developing plays. Strong at the point of contact and has great feet. Expect him to perform very modestly at the combine. Really sloppy technique in coverage.

10. Isaako Savaiinaea, UCLA- 4-3 OLB, 3-4 ILB, 4-3 ILB. The best fit for this player would be a 4-3 MLB position with a strong pass rush in front of him. Has some of the best coverage instincts in this class. I would consider him if you wanted to run some Tampa 2. Rips away from blockers and finishes plays, Savaiinaea (I’d love to hear Kenneth Arthur try to pronounce that one ;P ) has great instincts and could grow into a starting role.

11. Brandon Bell, Penn State- 4-3 OLB 3-4 OLB. High intensity, pursuit-type LB. Very short limbs and struggles to disengage. Athletic but limited by an inability to disengage which I find hard to see developing. His ceiling doesn’t go much higher.

12. Steven Taylor, Houston- 4-3 OLB only. Undersized, understrength, underspeed, understand? Did not see much to like at all from Taylor.

The Seahawks have consistently targeted the exact needs Carroll points out during his end of the year presser and we cannot expect this year to be any different. With the overall depth at LB, though, I’m not convinced they will feel like they are forced to take a LB on day one. That being said, if one of Davis, or, god-willing, Rueben Foster are sitting there at 26, I don’t see any reason to not expect them to be dominant players at the next level. Don’t sleep on Jordan Evans. If we did draft Hassan Reddick, I would consider him a Bruce Irvin type his rookie year. Although, I think Reddick can be much better than Bruce.​

Player I missed? Evaluation you disagree with? Let me know in the comments who you like in general and who you think would be a good fit for the Seahawks.

84 Responses to “Guest post: Kenny Sloth on linebackers”

  1. Josh says:

    Thanks for the guest post. If we do go LB 1st pick, I would love Davis or Cunningham. Still holding out hope for Reddick though.

  2. Darth12ee says:

    Locked on NFL Draft podcast did a mock draft today. Couple interesting things. Baker went 19, Reddick went 22. Seattle took Bolles, the first offensive lineman selected. It’s worth a listen.

    Great article Kenny, love it!

    • Rik says:

      Do you have a link to the podcast? Thanks!

      • Darth12er says:

        I subscribe to iTunes, but it’s ok here

        http://insidethepylon.com/

        King isn’t mentioned in the first round. Melifonwu doesn’t make it in the first, but they later say he most likely will. They also say there’s no way the first OL lasts until 26. Fournette drops to 17 because pass rushers and secondary seem to dominate.

        • Rob Staton says:

          Anything proposing Leonard Fournette drops to #17… I can’t even bring myself to listen to it.

          The two reasons people seem to move Fournette down are a.) draft twitter hot takes b.) He plays running back. It’s like we didn’t just see a RB go #4 a year ago and a RB with a TORN ACL go at #10 the previous year.

          • Darth12er says:

            Right, and they did acknowledge the slide. They kept going back to how deep the defense is this year. Pass rushers and secondary. In your opinion, is this a good pash rushing draft?

      • East Side Stevie says:

        Yes could we get link?

  3. D-OZ says:

    You are totally wrong on Steven Taylor. I would recommend watching the Florida St. game. I like the CB from Houston, (Wilson) although I have watched enough tape to attribute two of his int’s directly to Taylor. Taylor is 6’1-227 but plays much bigger than that. He is also very adept in coverage. He dominated Florida St. Check it out Dude. I like him as much as I like Riddick. Certainly better than Cunningham at OLB. GO HAWKS!!!

  4. Nick says:

    Kenny, thanks for writing this piece. You and I have been pretty vocal about our love of Jarrad Davis. He’s an absolute monster who would immediately provide us with depth/grit/special teams potential.

    You mention him playing WILL – do you think they’d draft someone to replace KJ Wright? Would that be smart? Let me know if you have any insights.

    • Kenny Sloth says:

      There is a lot of differing opinion on that.

      I feel that KJ can play all three LB spots and Leo adeptly.

      You’d like to not move him, but you also don’t pass on a potential blue chip LB.

      Im comfortable moving him, but I don’t know how the team feels about it. Perhaps could be a better for due to his lack of speed and elite length

  5. D-OZ says:

    Davis is my #1 LB in this draft besides foster MAYBE…..
    We shall see how it all shakes out when all is said and done. If you were so down on Taylor why did you even mention him? Between you and I we both know. Don’t nod on Walker Kenny, he is very good…

  6. Bayahawk says:

    Reddick doesn’t make your list?

    • HawkTalker #1 says:

      “Note; I reviewed only prospects that had at least some 2016 game tape available at Draft Breakdown and were listed as ‘pure’ LBs (hence Haason Reddick’s notable absence).”

  7. Bayahawk says:

    Also, thanks for taking the time to write this. Our demands on Rob pumping out multiple articles are tough for him (I’d imagine) so it’s great to see someone else step up.

  8. Bayahawk says:

    And now that I’ve re-read, I see why Reddick is missing. I’m a moron.

    • Kenny Sloth says:

      😉

      I really like Reddick.

      Seemed a bit counterintuitive to include a bunch of pass rushers in this post

  9. HawkTalker #1 says:

    Hey Kenny. Nice work.

    OK Now that you have taken your puristic approach to prioritizing the linebackers, how about dirting it up a little bit for us?

    How would your ranking list change if you removed your initial list requirements and let Reddick and any other potential LB candidates fight for spots on your LB big board?

    • Kenny Sloth says:

      You gotta consider Reddick in that too three with Davis and Foster despite the differences.

      Joe Mathis would rate highly too.

      Haven’t dug into these edge types. Was hoping to revisit them after Pete’s needs.

      • HawkTalker #1 says:

        For those others (potentially like Reddick) that would could see actually converting and being able to play the LB position, curious where you would rate those among your pure LB ranked big board. Reddick would be the biggest question, but also interested in where you would see the others landing as well.

        • Kenny Sloth says:

          Reddick is solidly in the first frame for me. One of the top edge rushers regardless of positional versatility.

          Reports are his coverage is good and he’s coachable. I would be comfortable placing him over Cunningham as a fit for us.

          I’ll need to get to the tape because Bower, Mathis, Anzalone,

          • Kenny Sloth says:

            Are all great nods

            • HawkTalker #1 says:

              Thanks, really appreciate the direct answer. Nice work on this as well.

              Double good work authoring this piece and giving Rob a chance to get his diaper changing reps in. I can laugh, I was there not that long ago.

              • Kenny Sloth says:

                Haha yeah I’m glad to give some of my thoughts to keep the conversation going

                I definitely don’t envy y’all

          • C-Dog says:

            Reddick started out as a corner at Temple, as well. So there’s a chance he might develop into a quality coverage backer as well as a guy that can get after it rushing. Reddick might be the most interesting player for me for Seattle not named Garett Bolles, or Leonard Fournette.

  10. C-Dog says:

    Great write up, Kenny! Entertaining and informative. It’s all I can ask for.

    What’s your take on Florida’s Alex Anzalone? For me, injury history is a concern, but he seems to have the athleticism to play all three linebacker spots, and might be a option.

    The other guy I thought you might bring up is Ryan Anderson. Something tells me he might be on Seattle’s board as an ideal SAM candidate even if his might not totally have that ideal length

    • Kenny Sloth says:

      I didn’t want to include a bunch of edge guys that rushed the passer 60% of the time.

      Re Anzalone; I’ll take the East comp to Clay Matthews III every day. His injuries are a little troubling and I’m not sure that’s the direction we’d like to go

      • C-Dog says:

        Yeah, I think I’m in the same direction with Anzalone, as well. Love the Matthews comp, but very concerned about the amount of injuries that plagued him. It’s going to be interesting to see where he gets drafted. By all accounts he had a strong Senior Bowl week, but is a team going to take him any higher than R3 with that track record of getting injured? Also, that coupled with an arm length just under 31 inches might hinder Seattle’s interest.

      • Kenny Sloth says:

        Easy*

  11. Cameron says:

    Nice post Kenny.

    This LB class is pretty top heavy tbh. I have the same top 3 as you (although Zach Cunningham has some really hit and miss tape imo, watch the Tennessee game), after that things diverge pretty quick. I have McMillan up there with Beckwith.

    I watched one tape of Jordan Evans and found him to be pretty forgettable. On your tacit recommendation I went back to look again. I still wasn’t blown away but he did a few nice things. Then I put on Jarrad Davis vs Alabama and on the 2nd or 3rd play he nearly puts Cam Robinson on his back side. These players are night and day. Evans isn’t in the same area code as a Jarrad Davis. They’re even listed at the same weight at 230 but Davis looks a good 10 lbs bigger and moves noticeably quicker.

    If we want an impactful LB I’m afraid we’re going to have to take him in RD 1.

    • Kenny Sloth says:

      Evans is several inches taller to explain the thickness disparity.

      Is he a first rounder? Not in the slightest.

      Is he an athletic leader in a power 5 conference? Undoubtedly.

      He has some traits in his physicality and block shedding, coverage is solid as well. Doesn’t waste steps.

      I may do a larger piece on him and some other personal favorites.

    • Kenny Sloth says:

      I certainly don’t disagree with any of your points. Hopefully he measures well and has a good run to put himself on our radar.

      McMillan is a really limited 3-4 run stuffer for me.

      • Cameron says:

        I’m not interested in McMillan or Beckwith they are inside guys. Jarrad Davis is probably best suited to play MIKE but he’s athletic enough to play any LB position imo.

  12. Dale Roberts says:

    Your description on Kendall Beckwith is interesting from the intimidation standpoint (a stated objective of PS). Can he play MLB in a 4-3? Is he fast enough for a Seahawk LB? Would the Hawks entertain the idea of moving Wagner to accommodate a force like Beckwith in the middle and maybe add some years to Wagner’s career? Wagner has the speed to move outside.

    • Kenny Sloth says:

      Beckwith is HUGE. Deceptive quickness. He looks like a 3-4 player to me, I’m not sure if he can cover the gaps in a 4-3

  13. Josh emmett says:

    Thanks for the insight dude, way cool!

  14. Misfit74 says:

    Cool article, thanks!

  15. EranUngar says:

    Great post Kenny, especially for someone like me that does not follow the college season.

    As for the whole LB search – PC caught most of us by surprise with the whole LB thing. With Wags and K.J. having the best year of their career, none of us had LB at the top of our draft needs.

    As I adapted to the new direction, the great plus about the move (for me) is to get someone that can rush the passer and help reduce the number of snaps of the “not so young” Avril & Bennett.( Reddik, Bower, Anzalone, Mathis)

    Any chance you do another post on LB/pass rushers hybrids?

  16. CharlieTheUnicorn says:

    “It is a good defensive draft. But there is 0% chance Leonard Fournette lasts that long.
    It’s a preposterous take.” Fournette sliding to #17. I agree.

    A dark horse team to grab him at #5 would be the Titans. Stated several times on the John Clayton show in Seattle (10-12) the Titans are in need of offensive play makers. RB would not be the largest need, but if they pair him up with who they have already…. they would be set on the ground for 3-4 years.

    The next most likely team would be at #8, the Panthers. They love to rush the ball, and Stewart might be done with them…. so why not reload with this guy. Long story shot, he is going top 10.

    The guy who can go anywhere in the 1st round would be Mitch Trubisky, QB, North Carolina. This guy is a true wildcard.. and could turn the draft upside down. I suspect he might be the Browns pick at #12, if things play out right.

  17. Trevor says:

    Nice write up Kenny!

    Of the group you listed only Foster (top 10 pick) and Davis would be of interest to me as a Hawks pick.

    I really think if they take an LB early it will be a guy who has pass rush potential and the ability to be a 3 down LB like Bruce was. I think if we take an LB in the first 2 days of the draft it will be one of the following 5 guys.

    #1 Reddick – The ideal pick really. He can rush the passer and showed the skills necessary at the Senior Bowl to be a 3 down linebacker. He also plays with great intensity and has the type of back story the Hawks love. If he is there at 26 I think he is almost a lock to be the pick like Ifedi was last year. If they were to add Reddick they would have the best group of LBs in the league hands down.

    # 2 Davis – As Kenny so clearly stated above he would be a great pick. The only one of the group who is not really a pass rusher but he is a stud and would be a great pick.

    #3 Tyus Bowser- Not as developed as Reddick but has just as much upside. Love his ability to bend around the edge and has also shown he can play in space. He would be a 2nd -3rd round pick and could end up being a real steal for someone.

    #4 Carroll Phillips- I liked him as an edge rusher all year but at the Sneior Bowl he showed he has the skill set to be a 3 down guy like Bowser. He is really under rated and better than Smoot who he played with and get more press.

    #5 Alex Alzone – Al depends on his physical and medicals. If he checks out he is another guy who can come in an play early. Of the 5 he would be the fall back option just because of his injury history. Few guys have had injury plagued college careers and gone onto to have healthy NFL careers.

  18. Jeff M. says:

    This one is going to be a fascinating spot in how they choose to fill it, whether with a SAM, a big Nickel/3rd Safety, multiple players, etc.

    Basically you have two 3-down LBs who never come off the field in Wagner and Wright. Beside them you need:

    -On early/run downs, a guy who can set the edge, take on a pulling guard in the hole, and also carry a TE down the seam in PA.

    -On 3rd/passing downs, a guy who can cover TEs, backs, and slot receivers, and also pressure the QB off the edge.

    That’s a lot of roles for one guy. Irvin managed most of them, Smith a fair number of them, and both got a high percentage of snaps. Since those two left it’s been a bundle of guys who can only do one of those tasks (if even that at a top level) and none have gotten substantial snaps.

    I think if PC could get a do-it-all guy he’d jump at it, but if there’s no perfect solution will he just keep going by committee instead?

    • Rob Staton says:

      Worth pondering whether they want Wagner and Wright playing virtually 100% of the defensive snaps in the entire season as they did in 2016. Based on what Carroll said, they want someone who can share the load. That possibly means someone that can play next to BW and KJW and also rotate with them (depending on the game/scenario).

      • Trevor says:

        You may be onto something there Rob. Perhaps KJ and Bobby were worn out by year end and Pete would know that better than anyone. Perhaps he would like to reduce the workload a little during the year.

      • C-Dog says:

        I kinda think that’s it, right there. He probably wants three down talent that upgrades what they have beyond Bobby and KJ, can play next to them, and spell them.

        • Rob Staton says:

          Reddick and Davis both incredibly similar in terms of size to Bobby coming into the league. Both similar athletes.

          • Kenny Sloth says:

            Reddick a former cornerback. You can see it in his hips hah

          • C-Dog says:

            I’d do cartwheels if either became a Seahawk.

            • BobbyK says:

              Also, as we’ve said before… our LBs would be among the worst in the NFL if KJ or Bobby suffered a significant injury. There is absolutely no quality depth on the roster right now (Morgan is a FA). In fact, not only is the depth terrible, but if the season started today either Coyle or JP would be starting. That is laughable.

  19. Trevor says:

    My dream Pre-Free Agency and Combine Offseason plan for Hawks

    Pre- Free Agency

    #1 Extend Kam Chancellor – (4 years 32 mil / 21 guaranteed) A 3 yr extension with a slightly more guaranteed $ and lower cap hit. Kam has shown he is the heart and soul of this defense and should retire a Hawk.

    #2 Extend Jimmy Graham- (4 yrs / 40 mil 24 guaranteed) Same a Kam a 3 yr extension for market value reducing his cap hit. He is another year removed from the patella tendon injury and has a whole off season to work with Russ. I think he could have a huge 2017-2018 season.

    #3 Extend Justin Britt- (4 yrs /20 mil w/ 12 guaranteed) Another 3 yr extension which JS seems to prefer. I am a little nervous about this one as Britt was a bust until last year but he looks like a legit C and they need to start building some continuity on the OL. I hope they make him a corner piece to build around.

    #4 Let all current FA’s (Willson, Steve H, Morgan etc) test the free agent market. Unless it is a really team friendly deal let them walk

    Free Agency

    #1 Sign Andrew Whitworth (OT -Bengals) (2yrs /18 mil with 12 guaranteed) He is 35 so a 2 yr deal is the max I would go. He is still playing at a relly high level and has been durable. Says he wants to play for a winner if leaving Bengals. Hawks are the perfect fit. Bring him in to play RT and help develop Ifedi at RG next to him and Fant at LT. He is exactly the type of veteran guy this OL needs.

    2017 OL Fant (LT), Britt (LG), Britt (C), Ifedi (RG) Whitworth (RT)

    #2 Sign Jared Odrick (2 yrs / 8 mil with 6 mil guaranteed) If he checks out medically Odrick would be an ideal additon to our DT rotation and could easily provide the 5-7 sacks we are missing from Clinton Macdonald and Hill.

    #3 Sign a Veteran Power RB (L. Blount or J. Stewart) (2 yr/ 6 mil with 4mil Guaranteed) – Either of these ex Oregon Ducks would be a great addition. If Stewart gets released then he would be ideal to team with Rawls and Prosise. Pete loves him. If not the Blount would be a great short yardage power RB.

    2017 NFL Draft (Focus on what Pete said and guys with an edge)

    Rd #1 Hassan Reddick (LB-Temple) Ideal 1st round pick. Can come in and have a huge impact year #1. He has already been discussed in detail.

    #2 Motavius Adams (DT – Auburn) One of the few pocket collapsing DTs in this draft class. He was a man amongst boys at the Senior Bowl and as a rotational DT has the chance to really be good early. Like Chris Jones last year he will be a much better pro than college player.

    Rd #3 Rasul Douglas (CB-W.Vir) Has all the measurables the Hawks look for. Also has shown he can take the ball away and loves to battle. Would be a nice option opposite Sherm. Akhello Witherspoon is another option if DOuglas is off the board.

    Rd#3 Comp Issac Assiata (G -Utah) A nasty SOB who can come in an compete for a Guard spot early. He can also back up Britt at Center. If we want to be bullies this guy is the type of guy you need.

    Rd#5 Comp Tedric Thompson – (S-Col) Love his range, play making ability and leadership. He will be a great special teamer and back up safety to start.

    Rd#6 Eric Saubert (TE-Drake) The star of the Shrine game and practices. Shower he was a good athlete with great hands. Want to see how he runs at the combine but looks like the ideal replacement for Luke Willson. A TE group of Graham, Vannett and Saubert would be solid.

    Rd#7 Jaylan Ware (LT-Alabama St) Ideal size and length at 6-7 310lbs and a good athlete. He is incredibly raw and a project for sure. Given the lack of OT prospects in the draft taking guys like this later to develop makes a ton of sense.

    Rd#7 Zane Gonzalez (PK-Ariz St.) One of the best kickers in CFB to come in and compete with Blair Walsh for the spot.

    • Sea Mode says:

      Nice. I like the extensions. Am still undecided on Hauschka though.

      Not sure how much I want to spend another R2 pick on DT after last year. Reed falling was special and they had a huge hole. This year I think they go for just a bit of depth in FA and later rounds.

      Do you feel Thompson’s stock is R5? I love him and guess I just don’t see what he’s missing to not be pegged with a R3 grade.

      • Trevor says:

        I would give Thompson a 3rd round grade but I have seen him rated anywhere from the 4th to UDFA. I guess a lot depends on how he tests and his measurables. On tape he stands out to me.

    • Kenny Sloth says:

      Daniel Carlson is my favorite Kicker in a long time.

      5 star recruit wanted to be at Alabama but wasn’t offered.

      He signed with Auburn and has been extremely potent.

      He’s also like 6’5.

      • Trevor says:

        Carlson is my favorite kicker too Kenny he has an amazing leg. I thought he was staying in school though. Kicking in the SEC is almost as much pressure as NFL too.

        • Kenny Sloth says:

          My bad you’re right.

          Gonzalez ain’t a slouch

          Jake Elliot and Adam Griffith. From memphis and Bama respectively. The former is kind of light.

          There’s a P/K/PK from Washington coming out of Idaho.

          He’s gonna be a Punter at the next level though

    • Bertelli says:

      I like the way you think, Trevor! Your scenario would absolutely address a lot of our needs. I’m drooling thinking of an OL with Fant, Glow or Assiata, Britt, Ifedi and Whitworth. The D-line suggestions are also good – I believe the Hawks are at their best when they have a solid group of guys they can rotate in and out to keep everyone fresh. I’ll be doing backflips if everything you say happens! By the way, Stewart was just released……

  20. LeoSharp says:

    Blair Brown an athletic 6’0 241lbs ILB from Ohio could be another name to look out for at the combine. He’s a forceful run stopper who can blitz. Potentially he could be someone who could compete with Wagner for the MLB spot. PFF has him as a first team All-American and he looks like that on the tape I have watched so far.

  21. Sea Mode says:

    Great stuff, Kenny, my man! I like how you listen to suggestions from others but stick to your guns on evaluation. It’s important that we don’t fall into groupthink.

    “Recommended to the blog by several users, Walker Jr. is anomalous to me.”
    Nope, that was probably just me, several times… 😉

    That said, I honestly had trouble even making it through Jordan Evans’ tape vs. Auburn. I give him the nod for size and physicality, but other than that he just looks slow to me, esp. laterally, like he plays jogging around, doesn’t hurry over to help with tackles, looks to get semi-pouty when he swings for the homerun in the backfield and misses. I know one can’t watch game film expecting a highlight reel, but I just didn’t see much that would interest me or make me want to watch more film.

    Really would love it if Jarrad Davis were to be there at our pick. Has “Seahawk” written all over him!

    No Elijah Lee, K. State on your list? I’m going to nickname him “Euclid” cause I haven’t seen him take a bad angle on a tackle yet. Highlights (duh) and vs. Stanford.

    He can be taken out of a play at times by a solid OL block, but hey, what LB isn’t? Consistently the first guy there in tackle support, jumps headfirst into the scrum, and even when he is blocked, he still keeps fighting to the whistle to get off and does so roughly half the time. If he had some DTs who could keep him clean, he will tackle everything in sight. Has the frame to add more bulk and has said that is his priority leading up to the draft. Listed at 6-3, 228 lbs.

    His tape vs. Stanford just went up a couple days ago on DBD and after watching it, I noticed Redskins SB Nation blog just posted on him a few hours ago. You can find all the vids embedded there from YT and Twitter: http://www.hogshaven.com/2017/2/21/14672616/washington-redskins-2017-draft-profiles-elijah-lee-lb

    Gave up a couple completions in coverage vs. Stanford, but at least he was running with his man (TE or McCaffrey) and was there to wrap him up. Has plenty of picks on his YouTube highlight reel too.

    • Kenny Sloth says:

      Hey thanks Mode. Your love of Walker inspired me to write me this. If there are so many other LB’s outside of the first frame, why not shed some light.

      Evans just jumped off the tape in an impactful way that I didn’t see from other linebackers.

      I’ll have to look again at Walker and Taylor.

      Wow, I’ll get to Euclid Lee soon.

      John Schneiders Kst. and Arkansas connections cant be understated

      • Sea Mode says:

        Cool. Love scouting with everybody here and while it’s nice to think every once in a while I manage to be “first” to throw some names onto the table, it really doesn’t matter and I receive a lot more than I contribute. Hats off to Rob once again for creating this space and somewhat miraculously (considering it’s the internet) managing to keep it this way!

        I just got excited about Walker mainly because I hadn’t found anyone I thought would classify as a 2nd tier at LB for us. Like after Reddick and Davis there seemed to be quite a drop off (I’m not a big Cunningham fan). His physical similarity to BWagz, ability to play both inside and outside, and seemingly high intelligence sparked my interest, although he is certainly not perfect by any means, as you pointed out.

        I haven’t checked out Taylor. Your take doesn’t give me much motive to do so… BTW, I loved the way you wrote that and think we should coin “Ux4” as standard lingo here on SDB!

        The real interest after Reddick and Davis for the Hawks I think will be in some of those OLB/DE types if they show some potential in coverage. So I look forward to your next guest article (?) and will continue to post whatever I find from that group.

        • Kenny Sloth says:

          Yah, hopefully I can get done with a few more of these primers and then revisit some combine winners.

          Yeah definitely more exciting prospects in that edge group.

          Taylor just had no vision or ability to shed blocks.

          There’s a reason that Houston defense was awful and it wasn’t because everyone but their linebacker was awful

          • JimQ says:

            When you do edge rushers, Please don’t forget about –DE/OLB-Jordan Willis; Kansas St.,
            (as mentioned – the Kansas St connection may mean they are looking at him) He has LEO size at
            6-4/255/33.25-arms, 10.0″-hands, 40-time & 10-yd. split to be determined at combine.
            2016: 13-games, 52-tkls, 34-solo, 17.5-TFL, 11.5-sacks, 3-PBU, 4-QBH, 3-FF.

            Willis is a very fundamentally sound DE/LEO//ILB-OLB and could fill the “Bruce” role IMO. If his combine #’s are satisfactory, He’s Probably a late round 3 option in the draft for the Seahawks.

  22. Sea Mode says:

    Bucky Brooks posted some tidbits from executives and his own scouting report on Jabrill Peppers:
    http://www.nfl.com/news/story/0ap3000000786691/article/the-book-on-jabrill-peppers-scouting-polarizing-michigan-star

    Summary for those who don’t have time to read it:

    Highest praise:
    “He is a bigger, more explosive version of Tyrann Mathieu.” — NFC executive

    Biggest knock:
    I think he is a better offensive player than defensive prospect. I’m concerned about the lack of interceptions and his lack of physicality. — AFC college scouting director

    Brooks comps him to Eric Weddle.

    Thinks he will go in R2 (top 50) because “rigid play callers will focus on his shortcomings as a player and miss out on his potential contributions as a hybrid safety/linebacker.”

    Sees Pats, Jags, Ravens, Chiefs, Titans as ideal fits. (Titans and Pats in particular)

    • Del tre says:

      Sounds like you took the Seahawk approach, looking at what a guy can do, the question remains however to be is Jabrill going to be on the board with Baker and Obi? If thats the case all 3 have elite traits, personally i think Baker because he has the best insticts of the 3, as well as being a hard hitter, and to top it all is already capable of playing the slot. I like Obi but he just doesn’t have the same flash tape as Baker and Peppers, not to say he doesn’t have great tape or doesn’t make plays, he just doesnt have the same jump off the screen quality to me, but thats my biggest knock on him, he has the size and athleticism to become a better pro and i think that theres a decent chance that with the Hawks coaching staff he could be the best of all 3.

  23. Sea Mode says:

    “Looking for a late-round/UDFA sleeper on the defensive line? Take a peak at Jhaustin Thomas of Iowa State.

    He’s a tall, athletic prospect who measures over 6-foot-5, 285 pounds and plays fast, explosive football. Thomas comes out of a three-point stance or stands over tackle and is equally effective at both. He’s a disruptive force with a good amount of upside and a player with exciting potential.”

    From Tony Pauline’s Monday notes: http://draftanalyst.com/monday-mussings-february-20th

    Gotta love sleepers these days as we wait it out for the combine!

  24. Kenny Sloth says:

    From Kenneth Arthur’s compilation of Washington Natives in the draft

    Michael Rector WR Stanford via Gig Harbor

    Daeshon Hall OLB Texas A&M via Seattle

    Zach Banner OT USC via Lakes

    Budda Baker FS UW via Bellevue

    Cooper Kupp WR EWU via Yakima

    Sefo Liufau QB Colorado via Tacoma

    Austin Rehkow P Idaho via Veradale

  25. Volume12 says:

    Job well done Kenny.

    • Kenny Sloth says:

      Thanks, bud. Hoping to give Rob a hand this offseason and submit a few more in this series and on

      • HawkTalker #1 says:

        Kenny asked me if I would consider writing a few guest blogs for this site. However, I think his real intension was to use some of my “fine” work to motivate some of our more informed readers to jump ship over to fieldgulls . . . (Well all but our banned members anyway). Hahaha

    • BobbyK says:

      Ditto. Thanks for the input.

  26. The Hawk is Howling says:

    Yay Kenny that was well written and a fun read, I appreciate your sense of humor and effort writing look forward to more! I’m liking Reddick like most on here, he would fill the Bruce Irvin role and it sounds like Davis is a great back up plan from what I’ve heard and you’re opinion. I personally enjoy looking up the players we draft and getting excited about them. I’m just a fan not an American Football analysis like all you guys. This does give me players to get excited for. The Combine is coming soon looking forward to John Ross running the 40!

    Go Hawks!

  27. You I have been watching Zach CUNNINGHAM and his technique is not always great but he is always or fly’s to the ball and he is very athletic.but if if Mr Reddick is still on the board I would probably take him instead. It truly is hard decision for me to decide

  28. STUFR says:

    Jalen Reeves-Maybin seems tailor made for SAM. Would love to grab in the 4th after we trade out of the 1st to get a 4th.

  29. […] If you missed the first part of this pre-combine series on linebackers you can check it out here. […]