Mock draft Wednesday’s: 27th February

February 27th, 2013 | Written by Rob Staton

This is without doubt the most fascinating, infuriating, unpredictable draft in a long time. If I was trying to palm this off as a proper prediction, it’d be a waste of time. The only people with any clue about how this might shake out are working in NFL war rooms. The rest of us are throwing darts blindfolded. You could argue that’s the case every year with mock drafts. This year though, it’s especially true.

There was a pretty substantial bombshell today with the news San Francisco would trade Alex Smith to the Kansas City Chiefs for the #34 overall pick plus change. So apparently the going rate for a guy who turns 29 in May and loves a checkdown is a borderline first rounder. Incredible. Andy Reid clearly feels he needs to hit the ground running (which he kinds of does) and doesn’t want to put his faith in a rookie. I can see the logic behind the trade. I just don’t get the price tag. It’s not like the 49ers would’ve been in any great rush to keep a backup quarterback earning nearly $10m for the next two seasons. The word ‘fleeced’ comes to mind.

Nevertheless, the deal will be finalised on March 12th. It likely rules out any shot of a quarterback going #1 overall and increases the chances of a left tackle being the pick instead.

So what are the big changes to the mock post combine?

Dion Jordan, Dee Milliner and Ziggy Ansah cemented their places in the top ten. Bjoern Werner and Damontre Moore are seemingly going the other way. Tavon Austin booked his place in the first round. Apart from that, the one big change is that everything became even murkier and unpredictable than it was before. The first couple of rounds are going to be pure entertainment. Shocks, gasps, surprises. Right from the top of round one.

Seahawks?

When I say the draft is fascinating, infuriating and unpredictable, it’s mainly down to the weekly confusion the #25 pick generates. I’m pretty comfortable thinking the Seahawks will draft a defensive lineman. It’s been spelt out to us anyway. And every single week I sit down to do a mock and can’t place a guy with this team. Nobody obvious jumps out. It’s very irritating. And it’s why I’ve looked at players like Khaseem Greene and Zach Ertz in the past, despite the big need for a pass rusher.

I went back and listened to Pete Carroll’s interview with John Clayton this week and one quote stood out… “We worked with Jason Jones last year and he got banged up a little bit. But that’s the right kind of move. We’ve got to find a guy in the draft here that can help us. We’d love to get a young guy, you know, we would really like to find the guy in the draft if it’s possible.”

When Carroll and John Schneider speak about the draft, they often say a lot without saying much at all. After the event you go back and have that moment of realisation. “Oh! That’s what they meant!” You think you’re getting a clue, only to interpret it a fraction incorrectly. Even so, we’ve got two months to go. We need to at least have a go at working this thing out.

I translate the above quote as an admittance that the ‘scheme’ and way of doing things is not considered a problem. That would mean they like the size up front in base while relying on the LEO to create pressure. They may well be a little more aggressive with Dan Quinn back on board, but I suspect that might just mean more creative looks from the same formations. “We worked with Jason Jones last year and he got banged up a little bit. But that’s the right kind of move” — that to me suggests that they’ll also continue to utilise more aggressive pass rush fronts on third, nickel and obvious passing downs. Maybe they like the idea of a specialist ‘three technique’ — it’s just that Jones’ injury issues prevented them from feeling the full benefit of his presence?

If they truly believe in that role and almost see it as an interior-Bruce Irvin, then maybe they would be open to spending the #25 pick there? After all, if that’s the big issue — better pass rush on key downs — why wouldn’t they?

Carroll also admitted in his interview with Clayton that he wanted another LEO and another defensive tackle, but it was the “that’s the right kind of move” reference to the Jason Jones position which really made me sit up and take notice. I could be a mile off here. They could have a third or fourth round guy earmarked for that role. It could even be a prospect like Margus Hunt. And they might just go after someone like Sylvester Williams or the best defensive end left at #25. Who knows?

Yet clearly they were optimistic about the inclusion of a specialist interior pass rusher last year even if it didn’t live up to expectations. If they intend to re-sign Alan Branch — not unlikely — then a move like that makes sense. So I gave in and put UCLA’s Datone Jones at #25. I’m honestly not just copying every projection by Derek Stephens — as I believe he was among the first to pair Jones with Seattle (and Khaseem Greene previously). Frankly, I’m not crazy about the pick. But Jones could, theoretically, replace his namesake. And I’m not here to choose my favourite players, but to discuss what the Seahawks might do once a week.

I tried to find physical comparisons for Datone Jones to see if I can feel a little better about this projection. He’s 283lbs and ran a 4.80 with an unofficial 1.63 ten-yard split. He benched 29 reps of 225lbs and a 31.5 inch vertical jumps. J.J. Watt — who only recorded six sacks like Jones in his final year in college — had a 4.81 forty at 290lbs with a 1.64 ten-yard split. Watt had 34 reps on the bench press but a 37 inch (!!!) vertical. Watt’s 20-yard shuttle (4.21) was also superior to Jones’ (4.32). So there are some similarities there. That’s the good news.

Here’s the bad news.

2008 combine. 6-4, 271lbs. 4.82 forty yard dash with a 1.60 ten-yard split. A 34-inch vertical jump and 31 reps on the bench press. The player in question? Lawrence Jackson. So there are similarities there too.

I suppose what I’m trying to argue here is Jones isn’t an insane athlete. The question is whether he can be effective to even 40-50% of the level of J.J. Watt, or is he just another Lawrence Jackson coming out of California? He might be somewhere in the middle, which wouldn’t necessarily be a bad thing. Yet if they do place quite a high level of importance on that niche three-technique role, Jones is probably the most likely fit. And he can still feature off the edge or even as a starter at the three if needed. Perhaps by being more aggressive, they’ll look to use a swing pass rusher, lining up all over the place?

Either way the object of these mocks is to look at different scenarios. This is one we haven’t projected yet. And I’m still dreaming there’s a way to get at Sheldon Richardson. It’d be costly, though. I need to get over that already.

In round two I’ve added a guy who can provide some edge rush depth and a player both Kip and I are big fans of — Ohio State’s John Simon. Again, this pick probably relies on Branch being re-signed (or another big tackle). There are worse suggestions out there than adding Jones and Simon to the pass rush.

I’m currently going through prospects who stood out at the combine who didn’t get much attention pre-Indianapolis. One of the guy I’ve got Seattle taking in round four this week is a good example. He’s 6-3, 231lbs and runs a 4.31. As you’ll see in the tape at the top of this article, he can play a bit too. I’ve also put some Cornelius Washington tape at the bottom of the piece, as a lot of people wanted to see what he looked like at Georgia. Big thank you to JMPasq for putting it together for us.

First round

#1 Luke Joeckel (T, Texas A&M)
Alex Smith. Ok. I still think Joeckel will stave off a challenge from Eric Fisher to be the best left tackle available.
#2 Sharrif Floyd (DT, Florida)
Floyd has a ton of upside. He could play the one or three technique in Gus Bradley’s scheme.
#3 Geno Smith (QB, West Virginia)
They seem ready to move on from Carson Palmer. That regime needs to put down some roots.
#4 Dion Jordan (DE, Oregon)
Limitless potential. The next great young pass rusher? He could be.
#5 Dee Milliner (CB, Alabama)
Officially, now the complete cornerback prospect.
#6 Ziggy Ansah (DE, BYU)
He shined at the combine and would be an asset as Cleveland adjusts to the 3-4.
#7 Matt Barkley (QB, USC)
After the fiasco of 2012, don’t expect Arizona to do anything but draft a quarterback here.
#8 Kenny Vaccaro (S, Texas)
Would they trade up for one of the top two quarterbacks? Probably.
#9 Star Lotulelei (DT, Utah)
I suspect we’ll discover in the next few weeks that Lotulelei will be able to continue his career as planned. Let’s hope so.
#10 Sheldon Richardson (DT, Missouri)
Prototype three-technique. Brilliant.
#11 Eric Fisher (T, Central Michigan)
He could go earlier especially if Arizona doesn’t take a quarterback in round one.
#12 Lane Johnson (T, Oklahoma)
He has so much potential, the Dolphins might have to consider this if he falls to #12.
#13 Desmond Trufant (CB, Washington)
The Buccs could be aggressive to fill this need.
#14 Xavier Rhodes (CB, Florida State)
Running a 4.4 at his size will get teams very excited.
#15 Barkevious Mingo (DE, LSU)
Tremendous athlete but the 2012 tape is pretty mediocre.
#16 Tavon Austin (WR, West Virginia)
They want weapons on offense. Here’s a weapon.
#17 Chance Warmack (G, Alabama)
David DeCastro and Chance Warmack is a pretty good guard combo.
#18 Bjoern Werner (DE, Florida State)
Werner’s fall ends here and this would be a good fit in Dallas’ new 4-3 defense.
#19 Alec Ogletree (LB, Georgia)
Some team will convince themselves over this.
#20 Jonathan Cooper (G, North Carolina)
Assuming they get a tackle in free agency, this is step two in improving the offensive line.
#21 D.J. Fluker (T, Alabama)
I’m not a fan personally, but then I was never really a fan of Andre Smith either.
#22 Eddie Lacy (RB, Alabama)
If they’re losing Steven Jackson, then they’ll need a big, physical runner to win in the NFC West.
#23 Cordarrelle Patterson (WR, Tennessee)
His work out at the combine summed it up – loads of upside, but equally so frustrating.
#24 Travis Frederick (G, Wisconsin)
More than anything they need to bolster the offensive line.
#25 Datone Jones (DE, UCLA)
He could be a pimped up Jason Jones. Maybe that’s what they’re looking for?
#26 Zach Ertz (TE, Stanford)
Donald Driver’s retired, Jermichael Finley might be cut. They could go for a pass catcher here.
#27 Manti Te’o (LB, Notre Dame)
Someone will take a shot in round one.
#28 Matt Elam (S, Florida)
He did well enough at the combine to warrant a place in round one.
#29 Khaseem Greene (LB, Rutgers)
Just a terrific football player.
#30 Gavin Escobar (TE, San Diego State)
Even if Tony Gonzalez returns, it’s time to start planning ahead.
#31 Johnathan Hankins (DT, Ohio State)
More size up front for the Niners.
#32 Kevin Minter (LB, LSU)
Tough shoes to fill, but the Ravens often look for value in round one.

Second round

#33 Jacksonville – Jesse Williams (DT, Alabama)
#34 Kansas City – Jonathan Cyprien (S, Florida International)
#35 Philadelphia – John Jenkins (DT, Georgia)
#36 Detroit – Jarvis Jones (DE, Georgia)
#37 Cincinnati – DeAndre Hopkins (WR, Clemson)
#38 Arizona – Menelik Watson (T, Florida State)
#39 New York Jets – Keenan Allen (WR, California)
#40 Tennessee – Blidi Wreh-Wilson (CB, Connecticut)
#41 Buffalo – Mike Glennon (QB, NC State)
#42 Miami – Damontre Moore (DE, Texas A&M)
#43 Tampa Bay – Sylvester Williams (DT, North Carolina)
#44 Carolina – Kawann Short (DT, Purdue)
#45 San Diego – Justin Hunter (WR, Tennessee)
#46 St. Louis – Larry Warford (G, Kentucky)
#47 Dallas – Shawn Williams (S, Georgia)
#48 Pittsburgh – Markus Wheaton (WR, Oregon State)
#49 New York Giants – Alex Okfaor (DE, Texas)
#50 Chicago – Tyler Eifert (TE, Notre Dame)
#51 Washington – Phillip Thomas (S, Fresno State)
#52 Minnesota – Corey Lemonier (DE, Auburn)
#53 Cincinnati – Arthur Brown (LB, Kansas State)
#54 Miami – Ryan Swope (WR, Texas A&M)
#55 Green Bay – Giovanni Bernard (RB, North Carolina)
#56 Seattle – John Simon (DE, Ohio State)
#57 Houston – Jordan Reed (TE, Florida)
#58 Denver – Johnthan Banks (CB, Mississippi State)
#59 New England – Dallas Thomas (G, Tennessee)
#60 Atlanta – Tank Carradine (DE, Florida State)
#61 San Francisco – Brandon Williams (Southern Missouri)
#62 Baltimore – Terron Armstead (T, Arkansas Pine-Bluff)

Projected Seahawks third round pick: Zaviar Gooden (LB, Missouri)

Projected Seahawks fourth round picks: Mark Harrison (WR, Rutgers), Sanders Commings (CB, Georgia)

Cornelius Washington (DE, Georgia) could also be a mid-to-late round option. Here’s his tape vs Buffalo from 2012, he is wearing #83 (courtesy of the man — JMPasq):

142 Responses to “Mock draft Wednesday’s: 27th February”

  1. Lenny253 says:

    Love the double up on the D Line in Rds 1 & 2. Id go Tackle, LB, or WR in in the next few rds.

  2. other ben says:

    Another wrinkle to the Jason Jones bit: Jones and Irvin ran a lot of DT/DE stunts last year (enabled by Jones’ athleticism) and this seemed to be very effective. This might also be the source of much of Aldon Smith’s production. When Jones went down, the ability to run DT/DE stunts may have been limited.

    I think it’s likely we’ll draft an athletic DE/DT tweener that can play the Jason Jones role and be athletic to run these same kinds of tackle-end stunts with Irvin on passing downs. We don’t need incredible size for the position (Aaron Curry spent most of 2010 as a 3rd-down NT) but we’re probably looking for a guy with length, athleticism, some pass-rush and a draft weight somewhere around 280-300lbs.

    • Rob Staton says:

      Fair points and observations there, Ben.

    • Phil says:

      I haven’t read the rests of the posts, so if I’m duplicating someone else’s thoughts, sorry.

      I’m intrigued with Datone. I watched almost all of UCLA’s games and saw him flash a couple of plays each game. In the meantime, Anthony Barr, a converted FB was having a feast against the opposing QBs. How could a “raw” guy like Barr turn into a pass-rushing madman almost overnight? Now, in hindsight, could it be attributed to the presence of Datone? Just like Aldon Smith relies on Justin Smith, could Anthony Barr be relying on Datone Jones? I haven’t got the time to go back and look at the UCLA games, but I’d be interested to watch the 2 of them — Jones and Barr — to see if there is some synergy going on.

  3. Cameron says:

    Rob,

    I see Simon and Jones being sort of the same type of player and both would be situational players in our defense. Tell me where I’ve gone wrong here.

    • Rob Staton says:

      I don’t think you’ve necessarily gone wrong, Cameron. I think it’s a fair counter to today’s mock. Personally, I want to keep Simon on the edge. I know Kip likes him inside, but I see him as an edge rusher. For me, you use Datone Jones to replace Jason Jones and add John Simon instead of bringing in a veteran LEO. Then you’ve got Simon + Irvin to start the year plus Clemons whenever he’s 100%. Simon isn’t an obvious LEO at about 6-2 but then Russell Wilson isn’t an obvious QB at 5-10.

  4. Bill Bobaggins says:

    Something tells me that Tank Carradine will be one to watch after his Pro Day. Without the ACL injury, I think that kid could have been a top 15 pick. I’d love get your take on him Rob.

    • Rob Staton says:

      I’m not crazy about him to be fair. There are things I like, he just doesn’t wow me. He had some easy sacks in 2012. Carradine has basically one move that he keeps going back to… it’s kind of a hand swipe pushing the tackle off balance. It works pretty well. However, I’ve watched three games now and I haven’t seen him beat a guy for pure speed off the edge. He bull rushes fairly well, but he loves that hand swipe. And my big worry is, if pro-tackles learn how to combat that, has he got a counter? Will he threaten for pure speed?

      He doesn’t look particularly fast on tape. I’ve seen three of his 2012 sacks where he was just unblocked and ran in a straight line to the QB. I think he’s becoming a little overrated, a bit of a flavour of the month. And he’s coming off an ACL which really, this team doesn’t need. It’s bad enough that they’ll be hoping Clemons can get healthy, without also keeping fingers crossed about the R1 pick.

      There’s no doubting his production, but I’m trying to remember the last FSU defensive end who wasn’t productive. Maybe that’s a word of caution on Werner? Tank, Werner, Jenkins, Brown. They all produced. Tank doesn’t look like a great athlete, good but not great. Would be intrigued to see his forty time and ten yard split. But having two LEO’s coming off ACL’s isn’t a very attractive offer.

      • Bill Bobaggins says:

        Fair enough. You definitely watch more college football than I do, so I trust that. I have a feeling that he’ll jump up the boards after his pro day. 11 sacks in 2012 before the injury will have the NFL drooling if he looks as though he’s recovered.

      • Michael says:

        If we are gonna take someone coming off an ACL injury, I would much rather have Quanterus Smith.

        • Belgaron says:

          WKU isn’t FSU but they could hedge their bets and pick up both. You’d think between Clemons, Carradine, and Smith, at least 2/3 would get back to making an impact. And if they all got healthy, we’d have great depth for the future.

      • Belgaron says:

        He plays low to the ground and is pretty relentless. It was his first year as a starter and his moves were still developing. As far as upside, he could end up being the best pass rusher of this draft, ‘Hawks like that kind of ceiling.

  5. AndrewP says:

    Wow, only one weapon for Russell? That would be ballsy of Pete & John!

    I do like the players mocked, a lot, but I am really hoping they get RW some more toys to play with.

  6. Clayton says:

    Honestly, I prefer Kawann Short over Datone Jones. I think Pete Carroll meant that “the right move” is just someone who can rush the passer on first and second down, as opposed to Alan Branch last year who was just a run stuffer. I think Short provides both pass rush and run stuffing abilities. I also think Jason Jones will be re-signed, as he did well when he was in, but his price might be steeper as Gus Bradley might try to outbid us. I also do like the other picks, especially Zaviar Gooden in the third, but I have a question about that… how does Korey Toomer compare to him at the WILL?

    • Spencer Vail says:

      I can understand the reasoning for Short but I think PC has a a lot of faith in the secondary which would be especially evident with a Branch resigning and a pick like Jones. Unless you have AP on your team its hard to warrant a running play on third and long. By putting your big guys up front on first and second you encourage them to throw on the secondary. Or try to run against them. And then on third you switch to Jones and Irvin to bring the blitz but maintain the personnel in the secondary. I personally feel that PC realizes that having a 3 tech that can both stuff the run and pass rush is a complete luxury, and while we all want one there are very few three techs that can do both exceptionally well. There is a very long list of those DT failures. I think a move like this would make a lot of sense, just my opinion though.

    • Leonard says:

      The two things I remember about Toomer was they had to estimate his vert because he jumped higher than the measuring device and the Hawks wanted him at the SAM rather than the WILL. They both have elite athletic ability though.

  7. Ed says:

    Funny note. Gill Brandt had Richardson falling to #17 and Floyd falling to us at #25. Wouldn’t that be fantastic.

    That sets up a great draft for Detroit (Millner/Jones).

    While I know we need DL, would you think we would try and trade down? If not, I would rather get at the top of a position, rather than end of the run on DL.

    1st Hopkins (WR) Rice/Baldwin/Tate could all be gone in a year
    2nd Lemonier/Short/Williams (DL) passing down lineman
    3rd Gooden (WLB) starting WLB
    4th Washington (LEO) might need to trade up with great combine
    4th CB nickel corner please

    • Rob Staton says:

      I never rule out trading up or down, but I think every group of fans in the NFL sees their team as ‘primed’ for a move one way or the other. It’s hard to second guess trades. I’m not sure who needs to get ahead of Green Bay. If they had a chance to move up and get a guy like Sheldon Richardson, I would applaud that move. But yeah, Floyd won’t last until #25.

    • Lenny253 says:

      For that nickel back how about the “Honey Badger” I could see him flying around with Sherm and the gang.

  8. Rob Staton says:

    RE: Cornelius Washington… looks like Tarzan, plays like Jane.

  9. Darin says:

    Not a fan of the Jones pick at all, with some very good players still there. Okafor, Moore and Jarvis Jones are all guys I would put ahead of D. Jones.

    Just watching these kids play, you have to think Carroll would find a spot for Jarvis Jones, the guy can get to the quarterback and that is what Carroll and Schneider have said the biggest problem is.

    As for Moore, the kid might not have had the best underwear olympic numbers, but once again the kid was a stud on the Aggies defense. He flat out became a better player this year, when many thought h would take a step back against tougher SEC competition. Moore might not have the workout numbers that Irvin did, but Moore is an every down player in the mold of Chris Clemons.

    Okafor, I just like better than Jones on the inside. Just a gut feeling.

    I get the Hawks want to upgrade at the 3-technique, but I just don’t see Jones as a Carroll/Schnieder type guy. One productive year, especially at defensive tackle, just don’t see them pulling the trigger.

    • Rob Staton says:

      Important to remember with Jones – USC told him to retire. Now whether that was heavy handed or whatever, we don’t know because we haven’t see the medical checks at the combine. But spinal stenosis ends a lot of careers prematurely. And Pete Carroll was at USC when their doctors were saying to call it quits. It’s hard to imagine he’d spend a R1 pick on the same guy a few years later.

      Moore – it’s hard to say Carroll/Schneider draft a guy running a 4.95. He looked sloppy, unathletic and badly prepared for the combine.

      Okafor isn’t in my good books… that was a complete kop out not working out at the combine. And if we’re talking about one productive year, we have to mention Moore there too.

  10. Ed says:

    On a side note. This really is the best draft site. A lot of information and the ability to converse with other avid fans. Great job

  11. cruxfaith says:

    This is my favorite offseason Seahawk blog. Thanks Rob and Kip.

  12. NMD says:

    Do you got an opinion on Jelani Jenkins Rob? I really liked him off of 2011 but he didn’t pop as much this year but I know he was in and out with injuries and they probably hampered him even when he was playing. He’s doesn’t got Zavier Gooden speed but he looks plenty fast, a solid tackler and pretty good in space. I thought he was a 2nd rounder before the season and I’d like him over Gooden if both are on the board.

    Damn I wish Sean Spence was in this years draft.

    • Rob Staton says:

      Very athletic, some potential there. Would’ve run well at the combine. However, he just doesn’t get involved enough. He’d be great at touch football. Smart guy with a lot of potential but you just want him to be more physical. He’s an option though and Dan Quinn knows all about him.

  13. Hawksince77 says:

    Rob,

    Yeah, reading about Jones brought Laurence Jackson to mind. Blah (essentially echoing your sentiments).

    I am having so much difficulty getting excited about any of the D-linemen that might be there at 25. Floyd – sure, based on what you and others say, great. Trade up for Richardson – I’m all in.

    But without having done much of a study, it seems like so many good starters get found in the middle rounds (and I don’t mean once in a life-time 3rd round QBs). Bryant, Mebane, even Chicago’s Melton were all mid-round gems. Besides, a returning Clemons, a re-signed Branch and Jones brings the Seahawks back to par.

    The prospects that I understand better how they will contribute in the early rounds are the LBs, WRs and TEs. Depending on how the draft falls out, getting Hopkins in the first, one of the top TEs in the second (Escobar would be great), and Jelani Jenkins or Gooden in the 3rd would put 3 guys likely to start/contribute immediately.

    After that, there are a bunch of later round prospects that have a decent chance to be something someday.

    Finally, there seems to be so much quality depth, and a bunch of guys with question marks (potential steals) that PC/JS can wait to see who ends up being available and drafting for value.

    This may be the most confusing draft, but for me, as a Seahawks fan, the one that fills me with the least amount of anxiety, as no doubt they end up with a slew of exciting players.

  14. James says:

    Don’t despair, Rob. There are no sure things picking at #25. The sure things are in the top five, like Aaron Curry. Let’s trust John and Pete to find the right guy. Maybe they can see some Geno Atkins in Datone Jones (they had comparable combines). Or maybe they go heavy, where R1 is the best place to find a big ugly who weighs over 320 lbs. Not many of those guys on earth, so when you find one who has athletic ability, he generally goes R1. At least one of Kawann Short, Sylvester Williams or Jonathan Hankins will be there at 25. Too hard to scout these guys from game tape, so too hard to project which one John and Pete would like the best, but any one of these four guys would be a huge boost to the Seahawks D next years.

    • Eric says:

      No need to go heavy in R1.

      Brandon Williams (Missouri Southern) goes 6’1″ 335lbs., and Akeem Spence (ILL) is 6’1″ 307lbs.

      Both are massively strong: Williams had 38 reps on bench, Spence 37. Neither is terribly quick, although Spence ran a 5.15 40 which isn’t bad for a +300lb DT. Both looked very good in drills, moving with surprising quickness, agility and balance. Both are solid run stop DT prospects.

      Look for them to go somewhere in R4 or later, though Williams should go higher.

  15. Lenny253 says:

    How about the Honey Badger in Rd 4? I can see him in hawk blue

  16. Zach says:

    Cornelius Washington is an oxymoron. Whoever said looks like Tarzan and plays like Jane hit it right on the head. How is it possible to play that bad with those combine numbers? Now we know why his coach didn’t play him as much. Is it just a bad motor? Seems like he’s playing half way and not really trying to get after the QB. After I saw the combine I said to myself “first rounder”, now I say 7th rounder. Damn combine giving me delusions of grandeur.

  17. ivotuk says:

    Hate them both. I think Datone is maxed out and will have Arron Curry type limitations. “He played all over the line” tells me he doesn’t have a home, a niche, or any specialty. Just a jack of all trades who did fairly good against college talent.

    John Simon is extremely limited. I see him as this year’s Nick Reed. He just won’t be able to compete against NFL talent.

    I want Kawaan or Hopkins, or Austin, basically BPA and don’t reach for need this time around. That’s why I’d like to see them sign Seymour and Freeney.

    • Eric says:

      In other words, you want a prototypical position player, regardless of the position or how well it’s played.

      Good thing JSPC don’t share that philosophy, else we wouldn’t have DangeRuss.

      BTW, Jones “played all over the line” for UCLA because he was the best defensive player on the team. A good coach uses his assets everywhere he can.

      • Attyla the Hawk says:

        That’s not entirely fair.

        Simon cannot play LB. It’s that simple. He just cannot in any way, shape or form.

        So if he’s a DL player, his size is definitely going to come into question. His speed will too. The guys blocking him are going to be bigger/faster and not fooled by his go to spin move.

        I am having a really hard time seeing Simon as a pro. That has nothing to do with production. I just don’t see what he does on tape as being anything close to successful against NFL caliber OL talent. It’s lazy to compare him to Nick Reed, something I’ve done. Mainly because I think Simon is much better at anchoring and playing the run more stoutly than Nick. But I think Reed displayed a much more complete/translatable pass rush than Simon does.

        It’s also not realistic that he will play at 270+. He clearly does not have a frame to hold that weight. I know he’s been reported to play at that weight, but I haven’t seen it verified and I don’t see it as likely either. I’m not inclined to take the internet’s word on that.

        There is a huge difference between him and Datone Jones in this regard. Datone can pretty readily go 295. His lower body is extremely thick and stout, with a massive barrel chest and aircraft carrier wide shoulders. His lower body can easily support an extra 15 pounds. This is a guy that at 280 is exceedingly lean. He’s not going to bulk up with more muscle mass. He’s going to have to get him a belly. Get some jiggle in his jeans.

        If you want to see what I mean, look at Brandon Mebane tape from Cal. He was a very trim DT — but we can see today that his lower body was able to sustain more weight. Datone is very similar. And further, extra weight isn’t going to affect his ability to hand fight. He is extremely good at using his hands in this way. Datone’s game isn’t predicated on foot speed. So adding weight should not be detrimental to his game.

        • Eric says:

          I wasn’t so much defending Simon as I was pointing out the folly of evaluating prospects primarily on metrics/measurements. I’m not entirely sold on Simon either, mostly because, like you say, what position does he play in the NFL? My point is that a guy like Simon is a lot like Wilson – it’s the size of the fight in the dog, not the dog in the fight.

          As far as Jones or Simon, forget it. Jones all the way.

          • Attyla the Hawk says:

            I can definitely appreciate the fight in the dog analogy. I mean you see it on tape. It’s palpable. It’s why I really WANT to like him.

            But in the NFL, offensive linemen have fight too. The NFL is not an effort league. It’s not a talent league. It’s a complete package league. You cannot be just an effort guy and succeed. Russell is an effort guy. But he’s also got unbelievable talent. He didn’t ‘just’ will his way to promise. He has the skill.

            At some point, all the fight in the dog gets you is a humiliating butt kicking from a bigger, better dog who has fight too.

      • Phil says:

        Anthony Barr had 13.5 sacks and was the Bruins’ best defensive player, IMHO.

        • Eric says:

          You got a good point Phil. Hard to argue with Barr’s numbers. But living in LA, I watched just about every UCLA game last year (and years before that), and IMHO, Barr made much of his living off of broken and disrupted plays by Jones.

          In the end, Jones is the most NFL ready Bruin in the draft, and one of the most NFL-ready DTs overall.

          • Attyla the Hawk says:

            That’s a great point Eric. Because I’ve been banging that drum all year.

            Irvin should be NFL elite at collecting clean up sacks. I mean if we could just make QBs move *A LITTLE*, Irvin could as much as double his sack production. There is no DE in the entire league that I would rather have in a situation where he was chasing down a QB.

            None.

            I firmly believe we don’t need a guy who gets great sack numbers for themselves. I want a guy that forces the QB to abandon the pocket on a consistent basis. I really don’t care if that 3 tech never gets a sack. I just want him to make the QB move.

            We have all of the other 10 players in place to render an offense dysfunctional if we can just keep the opposing teams’ timing sped up just a little.

            We don’t need an 8 sack DT. We need a DT that shaves a second off of a plays timing to disrupt it enough to force errors. We need more hurried throws. We need more abandoning the pocket due to potential pressure. When teams have to improvise on the move, I think that’s where our athleticism at all positions is maximized. It’s those occasions where it looks like we have 14 men on the field.

            We need a role guy. Not a glory guy. I could care less if our 3 tech never logs a sack. I care more about accelerated play timing. We have the pieces on the roster now to translate that kind of talent into game changing production.

            • Eric says:

              That is an eloquent explanation of the point I’ve been trying to make regarding Jones.

              Thank you Attyla. It’s nice to be understood :)

            • Eric says:

              Also very good point about forcing teams to improvise. It’s in those moments of improvisation (or rather the moment of abandoning the original play) where superior athleticism/effort can make the difference between triumph or tragedy.

              Which sort of comes back around to Simon, and that whole size of dog/fight argument. I think you’re spot on about Simon’s size matching up unfavorably with NFL OLs. I involuntarily cringe when I think of him banging up against the likes of Joe Staley or Mike lupati play after play.

              But then I think about a guy like him feasting off the broken plays of a player like Jones. One of the biggest criticisms against Jones is that he doesn’t track the ball well. I think Simon does that very well, and could easily rack up a bunch of sacks and turnovers finishing off a play that Jones starts.

              As you say, we already have a player like that in Irvin, if only we could get him more opportunities to do his thing. And I also agree that physically, he’s about as gifted as one can get at that position. But Simon has his physical skills as well. What I really, really like about him is his attitude. That kind of thing is infectious, and just like Wilson, I can see Simon elevating the play of those around him, particularly Irvin.

              BTW, Jones has that same kind of attitude. He’s truly interested in getting better.

      • ivotuk says:

        Never said anything of the sort Eric. I want players with the speed and strength to compete in the NFL. But they also need to show something in college that indicates their game can translate. I think Datone Jones will be a pretty good player but I think 25 is way too high. Unlike what you claim I said, I do see Datone as having great measurables but there is something else missing, something that I can’t put my finger on.

        And I loved Russell Wilson, was glad we got him. But hey, I’m no expert, otherwise I’d have my own site :) I can barely post legibly so that’s not going to happen.

        And my point about comparing him to Nick Reed is basically because I am not that familiar with a whole lot of players and even so, the comparison was more along the lines of NFL career and not ability.

  18. Ely says:

    Rob, any chance you have access to any game tape of Chris Jones from Bowling Green? He has the production and size but I’m having trouble finding much else. He’s definitely generated a little buzz. I know it’s hard to judge with small school players but he might be worth a flier in the later rounds.

    • Rob Staton says:

      I have watched a couple of games now. He just looks like a guy to me, and that proved to be the case at the combine too. Nothing special. Productive in college but I can’t see it translating. More of an effort guy that overachieved.

      • Phil says:

        I could see using a 7th rd. pick, with all the talent we have, just to see if his production at Bowling Green could translate.

  19. unitas77 says:

    What do you think of a trade with Jacksonville. We trade Matt Flynn and our 1st round pick for their 2nd and 3rd round choices?

  20. AlaskaHawk says:

    Rob – I enjoy reading your articles and draft picks. Glad that Kip is back and writing.
    This is the best draft website!

    I’m on board with jones or Short or one of the 320# big boys. Who ever San Francisco wants – let’s pick them first!

  21. Stuart says:

    l like Hawksince 77 take. It keeps the lowest scoring defense in the league together while freeing up rounds 1 and 2 to take weapons for RW. You also cant rule out that players drafted in the mid rounds this year turn out to be gems and beat out Branch and/or Jones plus Howard and Scruggs have just completed their rookie seasons. It’s possible that those two player could take jumbo strides this season…

    • Kenny Sloth says:

      Ala Sherman, Wright, and Chancellor.

      • Michael says:

        I really think Scruggs is gonna take a big step this year.

        • Attyla the Hawk says:

          I’m inclined to think this too. He strikes me as a Kam Chancellor kind of Carroll prospect. A guy almost good enough to play every down. But needed some extra development in his first year. Pete gave him a lot of plays last year (as opposed to a Jaye Howard who was designated as inactive). I am expecting him to make a big jump this year too.

          • AlaskaHawk says:

            I agree that Scruggs will have a big impact. I would also like to see Irvin move around more and sometimes blitz from behind the line , try to confuse the offense about where he will be rushing from.

  22. kevin mullen says:

    I recall a comment by Jim Mora regarding LJackson, he said that he wants Jackson to lead the league in “effort”. Problem with Jackson is just that, effort. If Jones has any sort of fire in him, would probably be more than Jackson showed. I like the Jones pick, touted as “maniacal” effort with his play. Need a guy in there that’ll play through the whistle.

    • Jackson was making plays 40 yards downfield. His best attribute was his hustle and pursuit ability.

      Problem was, he had absolutely zero pass rush ability. All he knew how to do was bullrush, and every sack he did get for us was a cleanup sack.

      I celebrated when Jackson was released. I thought he was a pretty huge draft bust and unlike some I didn’t think he’d turn things around with more time. However, the one thing I did like about Jackson was that he was at least trying. He was one of the best hustle players we had on that team. Every time I see a DL making a tackle 40 yards downfield it never fails to wow me. He made downfield plays all the time, but that’s basically the only value he provided, unfortunately.

      • *traded. Not released.

      • Hawksince77 says:

        As I recall, Jackson was pissed to be traded. Having played in college for PC and all. That trade made me sit up and pay more attention to PC. He wasn’t going to keep a player just because he played for him at SC. Like when so many Hawk fans were calling for Taylor Mays and PC passed on him and drafted ET. If I recall, that pissed Mays off as well.

        PC wants the best players on the field, period. As fans, we gotta like that.

  23. Oly3Arts says:

    This is just an exceptional website. there is no other way to put it (and i think it’s important that it is said) that this site enhances the expirience of being a Seahawks Fan. I grew up in LA, a Hawkfan in a place where there were none and now i feel like i can get all the info i would ever want and even more in the offseason. This is one of those things that, because it exists, it makes my life better.

  24. Kenny Sloth says:

    I was wow’d by the Marc Harrison tape. I’m ashamed I didn’t hear about him before. I have a hard time finding prospects on my own..

    Hated what I saw from Washington. Wouldn’t take him before the fifth. Much too raw.

    I really hope we take Manti Te’o. I think he’s the missing cog.

    • Kenny Sloth says:

      He’d really upgrade our pass rush.

    • He reminds me of Quinton Patton. Great size and good speed, but on the field he’s pretty bland. Catch, turn, tackle. Repeat 50 times.

      • Kenny Sloth says:

        But the way he got in behind the defense was really impressive. Showed ridiculous body control. Especially on the tipped pass he saved from being an INT. There was some REALLY poor ball placement in that tape. But I see what you mean. Definitely didn’t see the full route tree being run.

      • Attyla the Hawk says:

        Few things I saw from Harrison:

        1. Generally able to make the easy/clean receptions. Reliable that way. Good concentration.
        2. Uses body to shield defenders off the ball. Uses his size well.
        3. Catches with his hands.

        Things I didn’t like:

        1. Lets the ball come to him. He doesn’t attack the ball.
        2. Doesn’t high point the ball well. On virtually every errant ball, he didn’t display an ability to reset and get in the air and get contested balls.

        I see this as a big problem. Because NFL corners contest balls. And his inability to attack the ball aggressively allows NFL corners an avenue to attack and defend the pass. Even at the college level, he allows defenders opportunities at the ball that shouldn’t have been allowed. In the NFL, those are picks.

        Ultimately, I see a WR who needs to be college open to catch passes. I don’t see a guy who will make Russell look good. I don’t see a guy who considers that ball to be the most important thing on the field. I compare him to Chris Harper, who is an R3-R4 talent and there is a gulf of difference between the two.

        That’s not to say he can’t in the future. Just that he doesn’t have that on the tape I saw. He displays some good tools and good concentration. Solid R5-R6 option. Probably take over a year of pro development to see the field. Size may allow him to go earlier than that. He’s an 80% complete receiver. He has sub 4.5 speed and excels in leaping/explosion. Tall, and extremely long. But he doesn’t yet leverage that explosiveness or length AT ALL. In that way, he plays very short.

        Huge upside guy. Can’t say I couldn’t see Pete taking him on. He has definite tools to work with. And his lack of ‘go get the ball’ skills are correctable. But not guaranteed to be so. If he does correct it, he’s got the chops and physical tools to be a #1 WR in this league.

    • Kenny Sloth says:

      What impressed me about Harrison is that he seemed really good at improvising which is something that is vital with Russell at the helm.

  25. Madmarkus says:

    I can can see Seattle taking Kawan Short at 25 if he was to stay at a lean 308 ibs like he was in the senior bowl. I so want Khaseem Green but his position in the draft just seems to be in the wrong place and upsets me. So with much thought I went back to what I was thinking last year and thats clean up the WR and TE. Sydney and Zach are in there 3rd year of there contract, have suffered injuries, and are tying up alot of money that will be needed for the defense to come up with in the future.
    pick 25 DeAndre Hopkins – This guy could replace Sydney or Golden it really doesn’t matter because it will be hard to keep him from stepping out on the field and with a 4 year rookie contract would slowly set the offense money back to more balance.
    pick 55 Travis Kelce – For same reasons as Sydney we have Zach and thou this guy may round off his routes I think RW will stop practices like I’ve heard and correct him in training camp like he’s done with receivers last year. The guys a monster in the blocking department already and we do run alot.
    pick 87 Zavier Gooden – This guy played injuried most of this year but the tape on him the year before I thought was very good. He had dropped on everyone board at the start this year and after the senior bowl and combine came shotting back. I wish Khaseem Green had shown more speed at the combine to make me want to take him in the 1st round.
    pick120 Ryan Swope – The article by Kip before this remind of the tape i had watch of Tannehill the year before and i went back and looked at it before. This guy is a faster Largent and I believe stir up the competition and depth for slot position with Baldwin.
    pick 131 Nickell Robey – A quick slot corner to take Trufants not alot of tape as QBs didn’t throw this guys way as often as you would think.
    For other picks i got a lot of names scratched down on my pad but mostly they’re picks to push a few spots for depth and i be willing to take any Ideas like Matt Scott in 6th rd for backup QB . I just haven’t decide who goes where in later rounds.
    Everyone probably saying you forgot about DT,DE,and LEO spots what about them? Well I really think Richard Seymour has 2 years left in him. 8 sacks last year before injury and this guy has been a leader for a young defensive line in Oakland and can play all positions on the line. I know he wants a superbowl before he hangs up his cleats and I’ d give him a 2million dollar contract for a year with an option for another year if both sides agree to take Jason Jones spot and resign Branch. Maybe we get that late 5th round luck and pull the defensive tackle rabbit outta the hat again. I just think with the draft this deep on the offensive side of the ball we should take advantage of the strongest part of this draft other than settling weaker cause of need. After last year we really wasn’t that far from making it to the superbowl so I m going to panic now
    To everyone here i’d take any input as I need more names for my Scratch pad.

    • williambryan says:

      I would just say this concerning your statement about Greene and the wrong place in the draft: Wrong place says who? If you asked any one who was not in a NFL war room last draft if 15 was the right place for Irvin everyone would have laughed at you. The right place is wherever you can get him. If he’s not going to be there by your second pick (he won’t most likely) and you can’t trade out of 25 (assuming you want to) then take him at 25!

      • Steeeve says:

        It’s the wrong place because it’s not a huge need. Pass rush was a monumental need going into last year’s draft, and they addressed it by taking the most explosive pass rusher in the draft. Malcolm Smith can be average at the will, and it’s a position that can be filled by a mid round pick or a wily veteran. Heck, we started Leroy Hill the last 2 years and had a dominant defense. It’s not a great value.

    • Kenny Sloth says:

      I watched a lot of Matt Scott tape and wasn’t impressed. A great option late at QB is Ryan Aplin. No-one’s talking about him and his game reminds me of Russell’s. Minus the leadership abilities.

      • Trudy Beekman says:

        I’ve been talking about Aplin since FG mentioned him about a month ago. Josh Johnson might be another guy you bring in. He’s playin for CLE now, so maybe Flynn for Johnson and a 6th? Johnson is a better fit here, and Flynn would be better in the WCO if that’s what the new CLE regime wants to run. That’s all very circumstantial, but it would make some sense.

        Hopkins is a great option at #25. I think Rang compared him to Reggie Wayne, which I think is a very good comparison for what Hopkins could develop into, and the cap situation with Rice and the defensive guys coming off their rookie contracts next year does need to be addressed. I think he’s the most polished receiver in the draft, and could have an impact year one. Rice, Hopkins, and Tate in the slot is pretty dreamy.

    • Madmarkus says:

      I have nothing against Greene. I just believe DeAdre Hopkins is a better pick at 25 and I don’t want any hiccups on our way to a superbowl because of injuried receivers. I also think Hopkins is the complete gamer. I’d take greene if we could move up to get him but in my mocks i don’t even try to phathom trade because I’m sure I can’t predict them correctly

      • AlaskaHawk says:

        I like your strategy for picking receivers. It would be a giant boost to our future offense. I can guarantee you that if we don’t do it now then next year it will be our biggest need. Only issue I hve is that Swope has played well on a team that challenged for BCS, and shown 3 place combine numbers, so he will be lucky to get him in the second round (no way will he slip to third).

    • Madmarkus says:

      I was in a hurry for dinner. Last line was suppose to say “I’m not going to panic now.

  26. dirk says:

    Interesting that we are not really talking about a need at the 1-technique when we have only Mebane who can play there. Scruggs, McDonald, Howard, while not world beaters, at least give us some options at the 3-technique.

  27. Chris says:

    I’d like to see some Rodney Smith tape. He has the similar size/speed #s (very good) to Mark Harrison, but in the limited amount I’ve seen he seems more naturally athletic and a shiftier runner.

  28. Chris says:

    Also, anyone have an opinion on whether Harrison could make a good joker candidate? He’s nearly big enough and has freakishly long arms. Certainly has the speed for it. I haven’t seen him blocking anywhere though so not sure how he’d hold up in that department. He and Rodney Smith are the only two from the WR class that seem big enough to maybe be jokers.

  29. A. Simmons says:

    I don’t care for Datone Jones personally. I understand you’re tossing out ideas. Jones doesn’t look very good on the video I’ve seen. He looks average. As you’ve been touting, a good 3-tech is about having an animal mentality. Getting ramped up while mixing it up with the big beasts in the trenches. As Pete said that is what separates college from the NFL is the linemen in the trenches. They’re like rampaging elephants. You got to have your own raging elephant to be competitive in the trenches. Jones seems a bit weak for what we’ll need. This whole process is just getting started. I’m sure you’ll get some clarity as the draft process advances.

  30. Eric says:

    For those who aren’t convinced, here are a couple of Datone Jones videos:

    Jones vs. Nebraska and Rice
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fX_TC2CQx4g

    Post Senior Bowl Player analysis
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eHa3q2-yTxw

  31. Don says:

    Trade Up!

    That is what the 49ers will be doing to get their guys.

    The Hawks won’t be able to make room for 10 new draft picks. My advice is to trade Flynn, trade this years and some of next years picks and move up to get

    1) #25 DL—Williams or Greene–check
    2) Early 2nd RD–WR__ Hopkins or Hunter–Check
    3) Early 3rd- TE—-????? Check

    The Hawks need a few top quality picks, instead of quantity, that would be best.

    • Cysco says:

      Even if the Hawks wanted to trade up, who would they be trading up for? Which player in the top-half of the draft is truly worth giving up numerous picks for? I would argue the only player that would be worth looking at is Richardson. He’ll go top-10. The cost to move up from 25 to top-10 would be massive. You’d have to give up this year’s first, second, third and next year’s second (or something like that) to make up the value of going from #25 to #10. I just don’t see our front office making that kind of move.

      I think it’s far more likely that they trade out of the first and try to improve their position in later rounds and/or stock up on future picks.

      RE: Flynn, it takes two willing parties to trade. As of yet, there has been zero interest in Flynn. (that’s escaped out to the public) Simply saying “trade Flynn” is easier said than done.

    • Rob Staton says:

      I think all four of the NFC West teams could be looking to move up. They all have motive and to some degree the ammunition to do it.

  32. Trudy Beekman says:

    From WalterFootball, Seattle has met with the following players:

    Datone Jones*, DE. UCLA (COM) (SR)
    Quinton Patton, WR, Louisiana Tech (COM)
    Tyler Wilson, QB, Arkansas (SR)

    SR – Senior Bowl meeting.
    COM – Combine meeting.
    * – indicates more than one meeting.

    Smoke and mirrors and all that, and I’m sure the list is far from exhaustive, but interesting none the less. The Datone Jones pick does make a lot of sense IF JJ is not re-signed, which no one has been talking about happening. What kind of money would it take to lock him up to a multi-year deal if the PC/JS wanted to go that way? Last year was supposed to be his prove-it year, but I don’t think he proved much.

    I still like Short at 25, and I need to go re-watch Damontre Moore with my #25 glasses on. I watched all his tape previously when he was being mocked in the Top 5 and just sat there confused as I saw nothing that came close to justifying that. As for Jarvis Jones, I think the guy is an absolute monster and the best LEO prospect in this draft BY FAR, if not for the spinal thing. Pretty unfortunate in this draft that two of the 5 best prospects in Lotulelei and J Jones, both have medical red flags. Especially unfortunate for Jacksonville if they are adopting the Seahawks D, as these guys would be #1 and #2 within our scheme.

  33. oz says:

    I like the Jones pick. He needs to be coached up some. He is good at getting pressure. Just what we need right? The more I see of him the more I like. Vast improvement from 2011 to2012. He gets out of position on draws but that is where coaching comes in to play.
    Rob, I like Lemonier a lot as a second round option. I don,t think he will make it to our pick though. Could we see some tape on him please.
    Love your site Rob, I’m here every day.

    • Rob Staton says:

      Sure I’ll put some Lemonier tape up later today.

    • Eric says:

      I hate to sound like a one man cheering squad for Jones, but you’re exactly right about his improvement. Remember that Jones spent the first 4 years (he redshirted for an injury in 2010) under Rick Neuheisel. To say that Rick’s forte is NOT defense is being kind. Jones made tremendous improvement under Mora Jr., a true defensive minded coach.

      I wonder how much more he could improve under Carroll and Co.

  34. Nate Dogg says:

    Cornelius Washington is the reason people snark about the combine. I like the parts of that video where he almost did something. Against Buffalo……

    • Rob Staton says:

      It’s like he just couldn’t be bothered that day. Just kind of coasted along. Like he was wondering whether he’d left the back door open.

      • Geoff says:

        Haha, that pretty much sums it up.

        I’m intrigued by Mark Harrison, a big Pete Carroll kinda receiver. Trained with Brandon Marshall.

        • Trudy Beekman says:

          I think we have to see at least another game before delegating Washington to UDFA. If you watch any of Quanterus Smith’s tape other than the Bama game, he looks pretty bad too.

          Agree that Harrison is interesting. When you watch him move, he looks very strong but never shows the consistent physicality or ability to high-point that you want to see. I guess if he did we would be talking about him in the top 10.

  35. Nate Dogg says:

    I know you’re getting it from Davis already about Tank, but bottom of the second seems really low for him even coming off an injury. Hard to see Seattle passing on him if he’s there with their second pick, especially for Simon who might be a little redundant with Jones.

    • Rob Staton says:

      I’m just not crazy about Tank, even considering the ACL. When I watch the tape I keep getting drawn back to Werner. I’m sceptical this team would want two LEO’s coming back from ACL injuries.

      And I see Simon as a pure edge rusher, not kicking inside.

  36. Phil says:

    Rob – Everyone seems to be focussed on the players who stood out at the combine. But, who are we overlooking because they weren’t at the combine? A reminder would be helpful.

  37. Phil says:

    Here’s a thought on how we might find a hidden 3-tech. Go to http://espn.go.com/college-football/statistics/player/_/stat/defense/sort/sacks/year/2012/group/80 which lists the NCAA Div. 1-A total sack leaders for 2012.
    Then, see if there is tape for the players. If there is, watch the tape, but don’t watch the sack leader — instead, watch the 3-tech. Are they blowing up the pocket so that the other player (the sack leader) is just picking up the remains of the QB?

    Probably done by front office’s all over the league ..

  38. Stephen H says:

    If we are going to take a chance on a DE coming off ACL injury, I would like to see the Hawks take a long look at Quanterus Smith from WKU. There isn’t a ton of tape on this guy coming out of the Sun Belt Conference, but a cut-up of their game vs. Alabama is available on Youtube. He is listed at 6’5” and about 250 LBS, shows a good first step and flashes some nice pass rushing technique. He doesn’t seem quite as stout against the run as Carradine from what I saw however. Like Rob, I would also be hesitant to draft another DE coming off an ACL injury, but Smith is projected to go much later than Tank, where the risk is more appropriate in my opinion.

  39. Kenny Sloth says:

    Wow. Simon looks like the most polished edge rusher in this draft. His Nebraska tape was an absolute clinic. He showed a great spin, rip, dip, swim and bull rush move. He’s just soooo lacking physically. I’d like to see him at the 5tech in the nickle. That would be killer. The 49ers leave essentially their base defense on the field at all times. Maybe we’re moving in the opposite direction. Maybe we’ll bring in tons of specialists and make beautiful subpackages. I like Simon if he’s there in the second, which is likely. I’d like to grab at least one outspoken leader in this draft.

    I’m terrified of becoming a Steeler or Lion-like defense.

    I really like Harrison as a 4th or later rounder. I also really like Chris Gragg. He’s not a natural pass catcher, but his upside is nearly limitless. I’d go bananas for him in the 3rd or 4th. Most likely the 3rd after that combine.

    • Kenny Sloth says:

      Also, I’m still really big on Sylvester Williams and would definitely take him over Datone Jones in the first, but I would really like to move away from 25. I’d prefer moving up for Richardson, but if it’s too pricey, I’d love to move down to get more picks with similar value.

      Rob, what do you think of Stansly Maponga, DE from TCU.? Pretty fluid on tape, thanks.

      • Eric says:

        Williams is a strong candidate. He’s just more of a traditional run stop DT. I’m not sure that’s what JSPC want.

      • Colin says:

        Yea, I think I could get on board with Sylvester Williams at 25. Might prefer Kawaan Short, Khaseem Greene, John Simon or Deandre Hopkins, but man there is so little difference in talent between 5 and 25 this year. It’s weird.

        I’m convinced Datone Jones is at earliest a 2nd round talent. He’s this years Courtney Upshaw; talented, but really not sure what position you play him at. I think you ask him to tee off on 3rd downs, so if he is there in round 2 you think long and hard about it.

      • Trudy Beekman says:

        Maponga looks great and is probably my favorite Rd 4 or later LEO prospect right now.

    • other ben says:

      The Niners actually use more nickel than base 3-4. They take their NT off the field (Sopoaga) and replace him with a CB (Culliver) who plays outside while C. Rogers plays in the middle. Sopoaga only played 31% of defense snaps last year while Culliver played 63%.

      http://www.footballoutsiders.com/stats/snapcounts

  40. Belgaron says:

    If he continues to recover on schedule, it could be Cornellius “Tank” Carradine at 25. He has a full workout pro day scheduled a week before the draft.

  41. Jerry Nice says:

    Once again, great job as always Rob.

    My gut feeling this year is that this is the time to take a little more risks than usual. We were a couple plays from being in the NFC Championship, and poised to whoop on the hated 9ers once again. One game away from the Super Bowl doesn’t mean you sell the farm, but it does feel like time to get after elite talent. When I look at this roster from a bird’s-eye view, the obvious needs are pass rush, receiver depth, and “playmaker” factors on offense (defense is ahead here).

    If they don’t make a big run at Melton or Starks (if available) I would be shocked. Those players both scream Seahawks, and I would love to nab either one (preferably Melton). However, as far as the draft is concerned, I feel that this is the perfect opportunity to get a potential elite talent on offense that can make us dangerous to deadly instantly. Russell will hit the ground running (pun intended), and could use some more weapons at the skill position. Keep in mind, Sidney is still a little injury prone, Miller has had a ton of concussions, and Tate fluctuates from role player to dynamic playmaker. Baldwin is a great addition, but more so on the efficient, third-down type of player. What happens if we don’t address receiver and someone goes down? I don’t want a 3rd round project w/ a team on the verge of title contention. I want a guy that is a threat to open it up every game. Unfortunately, we can’t hope to find him undrafted, and would have to make a bold move to get such a player. I’m staring at Hopkins, Allen (less so), and Ertz if available or for a reasonable move up.

    Just my thoughts. GO HAWKS!

    • Jerry Nice says:

      Nothing? Come on!

      • Rob Staton says:

        Apologies, not had time to reply to everyone so far.

        I suspect Melton and Starks will both be franchised. I think it’d be foolish for Chicago to let Melton walk, although they could do if they prioritise getting a left tackle. If Brandon Marshall signs an extended deal then it could free up some room. As soon as those two are tagged, I’m getting on the phone to Alan Branch’s agent.

        I agree on providing Wilson with weapons. I think it’s vital, albeit a secondary issue next to the pass rush. Rice is a constant injury worry and seemingly always will be. Tate and Baldwin have both missed time too. They need to keep adding strong weapons to the offense. You can never have too many good pass catchers. I think round two will probably be targeted for a WR or TE, but I wanted to mix things up this week.

        • Jerry Nice says:

          Rob – Always the steady hand. Nice work.

          I believe you are right. I only see Melton walking really if the Bears go after Jake Long and kill $10+ million in cap for 2013.

          If neither are available, I would also have Branch on speed dial…Along with Jones. If we are to believe that Jones can be 100% by training camp (can he?), it would be great to have him in rotation again. He seemed to be quite effective in certain packages, but a little too hampered with injuries all year to rely upon.

          If we are to replace Jones, I think we do so in round 3 or 4 this year. My gut is that we get some type of offensive difference-maker in rounds 1 or 2. I really like the Rutgers WR you picked for round 4 as well…What a deep class this year!

          Thanks for your insight Rob.

  42. Rob Staton says:

    Hi Greg – I didn’t delete the write-up but it did pop up in my ‘comment needs approval’ folder for some reason. I have now approved it so your write up on Lemonier is now on the blog. I only delete comments that include offensive language.

    For what it’s worth, Lemonier was off the board when Seattle picked John Simon in this mock, he went #52 to Minnesota.

  43. Attyla the Hawk says:

    Greg, I can tell you unreservedly, that is not the case. The discourse here is very open and while Rob is no different than any poster here in terms of having an opinion, it’s a reasoned opinion.

    I know on multiple occasions, I’ve contributed here and I can tell wholeheartedly that Rob has re-examined prospects based on that contribution. Sometimes he shows a changed opinion and other times it reinforces his original opinion. But it’s always supported by observation.

    The level of interaction and examination on this site between followers and it’s writers is unmatched in my opinion. Dissenting views are encouraged and followed up on here on a constant basis. This isn’t a herd mentality kind of site by any means and I love that about SDB.

    • Michael says:

      Well said Attyla. I don’t know of any other site that listens to and interacts with its readers like this one. And I have never seen Rob post or dismiss anything without something to support his opinion. Keep up the good work Rob!

  44. Scott Allen says:

    I saw know Washington impressed at the combine but the video just posted had him looking slow off the snap and meeting most tackles laterally. He never looked very strong and able to square up. I know outside guys like to slide and lean but he leaned himself out of position more times than the not.

  45. John says:

    I’ve been hyping Lemonier to anyone who’d listen for a week or so now. He reminds me so much of Clem. I’d love to take this guy. Take him and Simon. Kick Simon inside once and ahwile. BAM! Ultimate nickel line haha Not really but that’s alot of pass rush to put out there on saaay a 3rd and 12?

  46. Trudy Beekman says:

    I saw a couple of his games and was impressed. He was being projected as a round 3-4 guy which is way too late if he could play 3-4OLB, though I don’t remember seeing any of that. I’ll have to re-watch after seeing that he had decently long arms. I remember that they looked really small on tape, but probably just his pads.

  47. Attyla the Hawk says:

    I see the same.

    Even the 2012 footage which has been billed as underwhelming, you see a guy who is active and alert. He has so many ‘almost’ plays it’s almost maddening. There are so many instances where he has his guy beat early but can’t seem to get really free. He demonstrates a really consistent ability to get the initial win on position.

    Motor is excellent.

    Good play recognition.

    Looking at his 2011 versus 2012 tape, my concern is that I don’t see a guy who has taken that next step and improved. That would give me pause because I believe it’s a development league. Now there could be reasons for that — namely the talent he lined up beside may have been diminished in 2012 v. 2011. Nothing happens in a vacuum.

    Obvious talent there. A guy who demonstrates consistent penetration skills and the ability to penetrate off of the snap. I would have liked to have seen him show improvement in his finishing plays off because he’s so tantalizingly close with such regularity.

  48. […] don’t expect the Seahawks to make any great changes to this plan, which is why I projected Datone Jones to Seattle at #25 this week. Whether they use a first round pick on a nickel three-technique remains to be seen. But I think […]