@robstaton love your work on SDB. Would love a post on your OL/WR big board for the Hawks. Who do you take before who, between the two?
— S. Martin (@BhamSeahawk) March 21, 2014
NOTE — Just because I’ve put a certain grade on a player (eg first round) doesn’t mean I expect them to go in that range.
This isn’t me projecting where players will go. It’s just how I’m ranking them on March 24th (for whatever it’s worth).
This is such a good class, I expect players with first round grades to last into round two. There’s every chance Brandon Coleman lasts until #64, or Brandon Thomas.
#1 Greg Robinson (T, Auburn)
#2 Jake Matthews (T, Texas A&M)
#3 Joel Bitonio (T, Nevada)
#4 Taylor Lewan (T, Michigan)
#5 Zack Martin (T, Notre Dame)
#6 Morgan Moses (T, Virginia)
#7 Brandon Thomas (T, Clemson)
#8 Ja’Wuan James (T, Tennessee)
#9 Antonio Richardson (T, Tennessee)
Cyrus Kouandjio would’ve been on this list — probably in the top three — before the combine. News of a potentially serious knee problem worries me enough to take him off the board.
He’s received high-profile support from people like Dr. James Andrews recently, who claimed there were “wear patterns” on the knee. These were present throughout his college career, having no obvious impact on his play.
Yet when you hear the term “arthritis”, alarm bells have to go off. It’s a shame for Kouandjio who looked terrific at Alabama against some top level opposition. But unless it’s a late round flier (ala Jesse Williams) I’m not making any investment here.
Seattle is unlikely to get any shot at Greg Robinson, Jake Matthews or Taylor Lewan (despite his recent trouble with the law). Joel Bitonio, Morgan Moses and Brandon Thomas can all play tackle at the next level, with Moses perhaps the best fit on the right side.
One of the big plus points for Bitonio is his ability to fill multiple spots. He could play guard and backup left tackle. In that scenario you’re trusting Michael Bowie or Alvin Bailey to start at right tackle.
#1 Joel Bitonio (Nevada)
#2 Zack Martin (Notre Dame)
#3 Marcus Martin (USC)
#4 Xavier Su’a -Filo (G, UCLA)
I’m really not a fan of the pure guards available in this class. I wouldn’t draft David Yankey in the first two rounds, ditto Cyril Richardson.
Gabe Jackson doesn’t look like a great fit for Seattle and probably suits a man-blocking scheme. I’ve not had a chance to look at Penn State’s John Urschel.
The best players available are converts. Bitonio and Zack Martin both played tackle in college, while Marcus Martin was a center. On the plus side I think Bitonio is a possible Logan Mankins clone while both Martin’s should make extremely competent guards at the next level.
#1 Sammy Watkins (WR, Clemson)
#2 Mike Evans (WR, Texas A&M)
#3 Marqise Lee (WR, USC)
#4 Odell Beckham Jr (WR, LSU)
#5 Kelvin Benjamin (WR, Florida State)
#6 Martavis Bryant (WR, Clemson)
#7 Brandon Coleman (WR, Rutgers)
#8 Brandin Cooks (WR, Oregon State)
#9 Donte Moncrief (WR, Ole Miss)
#10 Jarvis Landry (WR, LSU)
#11 Paul Richardson (WR, Colorado)
#12 Allen Robinson (WR, Penn State)
#13 Davante Adams (WR, Fresno State)
The strength of this draft is at wide receiver. I’d be surprised if all nine of the names I’ve listed for the first round were gone by #32 — making for great value at the end of day one.
There’s a cigarette paper between Watkins and Evans at the top.
We could see five or six receivers off the board by the Jets at #18. Even if such a rush occurs, there’s plenty of remaining fits for Seattle.
Martavis Bryant is tall, long and fast. He’ll make chunk plays downfield, he can run away from a defense. There’s a little Randy Moss to his game. If he’s switched on he can become a big time receiver at the next level.
There aren’t many 6-6, 225lbs receivers who run in the 4.5′s like Brandon Coleman. He’s a rare prospect who had the misfortune of playing in a lousy college offense. In the right system, Coleman can become a star.
Brandin Cooks is a smaller playmaker who commands attention wherever he lines up. Oregon put three defensive backs on him in the Civil War game. He was a production machine last season and had a terrific combine.
Donte Moncrief’s tape is frustrating to watch, but so is Ole Miss’ offense in general. He has ideal size and speed and you just get the sense his best football will come at the next level (depending on what team he plays for).
I like the round two options, although out of the four names listed there’s a bit of a gap between Jarvis Landry and the rest.
I’m guessing people will mention the absence of Jordan Matthews. Right now I think he’s a third round talent. Great stats, good measurables. Very average tape.
I’ve been putting it off for a while but eventually I’ll get round to doing an article on Matthews explaining my opinion in more detail. This piece by Sigmund Bloom is worth reading and covers some of the issues I have.
To answer the final question in the Tweet at the top of the piece — “Who do you take before who, between the two?” — it really comes down to who’s available.
Here’s a combined OL/WR board for the first round:
#1 Greg Robinson (T, Auburn)
#2 Sammy Watkins (WR, Clemson)
#3 Mike Evans (WR, Texas A&M)
#4 Jake Matthews (T, Texas A&M)
#5 Marqise Lee (WR, USC)
#6 Odell Beckham Jr (WR, LSU)
#7 Joel Bitonio (T, Nevada)
#8 Kelvin Benjamin (WR, Florida State)
#9 Taylor Lewan (T, Michigan)
#10 Martavis Bryant (WR, Clemson)
#11 Brandon Coleman (WR, Rutgers)
#12 Brandin Cooks (WR, Oregon State)
#13 Donte Moncrief (WR, Ole Miss)
#14 Zack Martin (T, Notre Dame)
#15 Morgan Moses (T, Virginia)
#16 Brandon Thomas (T, Clemson)
If the intention is to grab a receiver and an offensive lineman, really it depends on what you get at #32. If you take a receiver in the first round, you’re looking at the offensive line options at #64. And vice versa.
I’d lean towards a receiver in round one due to the sheer quality of the position this year. But if a player like Joel Bitonio is sitting there at #32, I’d find it tough to pass.
Meanwhile the 2014 compensatory picks were announced today. Unsurprisingly, the Seahawks weren’t awarded any additional picks.