Seahawks prepared for a ‘depth’ draft?

December 11th, 2012 | Written by Rob Staton

Tennessee's Dallas Thomas could provide depth at tackle or guard

Whatever happens during the rest of this season, the Seahawks have a lot of key positions tied up. Quarterback, running back, left tackle and cornerback – four of the most important positions where the Seahawks have some of the best young talent in the NFL.

There’s also enough depth across the board so that when injuries have occurred this year, the team hasn’t really missed a beat. Sure, there are positions where upgrades are desirable. There aren’t many glaring needs though. When it’s time to start concentrating on the draft, there’s every chance the Seahawks will be able to say they’re going for the ‘best player available’ – and actually mean it.

And the best player available could be a ‘depth’ pick.

The good teams make draft for depth all the time. Pittsburgh has regularly topped up their defense over the years with players who don’t necessarily start straight away. The Ravens likewise always seem to be hunting for value, rather than chasing needs. The New York Giants are another team that for a few years now have been accumulating solid depth.

Sure, you want to get instant production from those early picks. Sometimes it’s not always possible. The good teams always stay one step ahead of the curve.

So what are some of the positions where the Seahawks could be thinking longer term?

The Seahawks don’t have a lot of depth at wide receiver and an injury to Sidney Rice or Golden Tate would hit the team hard. I suspect most fans would rather avoid the position in round one due to the stigma attached to receivers drafted early. However, if the front office wants to make life as easy as possible for Russell Wilson, they’ll need to make sure he has enough legitimate targets to throw to. And if the value is strong at the end of round one – it should be considered a very realistic option. Even if the player in question acts more as a depth/complimentary pick in his first year or two in the league.

Possible depth options: Markus Wheaton (WR, Oregon State), DeAndre Hopkins (WR, Clemson), Zach Ertz (TE, Stanford), Robert Woods (WR, USC)

The old argument says you can never have enough good cornerbacks. That could be increasingly true for Seattle if Richard Sherman loses his PED appeal and has to miss four games at the start of next season. Brandon Browner won’t be an unrestricted free agent until 2015, but he will be 29 next August. Walter Thurmond has shown real promise during his pro-career, but he’s also shown an inability to stay healthy. If there’s real value to be found at cornerback in round one, it’s another area the Seahawks might consider next April. It’s also worth noting just how well Pete Carroll and John Schneider have done finding low-cost talent at corner. So far they haven’t needed to spend an early pick and they might feel confident enough to keep looking for those late-round gems.

Possible depth options: Dee Milliner (CB, Alabama), Jonathan Banks (CB, Mississippi State), Bradley Roby (CB, Ohio State), Xavier Rhodes (CB, Florida State)

Seattle’s offensive line gets a raw deal from a lot of fans, yet Football Outsiders ranks the line 3rd overall for run blocking and 16th overall for pass protection. The Seahawks have given up 24 sacks – and only six teams have fewer this season. Breno Giacomini has become a bit of a scapegoat due to an unacceptable number of penalties, but he’s also done a better job than most people give him credit for. Right tackle has become a thankless task in the NFL and it’s not a position easily filled. Even so, I wouldn’t completely rule out further investment in the offensive line. It might have to be a pretty special player who falls to make it happen, but good teams understand value and don’t look a gift-horse in the mouth.

Possible depth options: Eric Fisher (T, Central Michigan), Taylor Lewan (T, Michigan), Dallas Thomas (G/T, Tennessee), D.J. Fluker (G/T, Alabama)

I’ve listed three examples, I’m sure you could add more. The Seahawks have improved so much in the last three years – perhaps more so than any other team in the league. And they’ll find themselves in a position next April without any desperate needs. I believe upgrading at the three-technique is the greatest overall need. Yet I wouldn’t say an aggressive move is required to fill that hole, particularly if there’s better talent on the board in other areas. It’s an enviable position to be in – one enjoyed by the ‘usual suspects’ picking in the 20′s or 30′s virtually every year. And with Carroll and Schneider’s track record in the draft so far, that could put the Seahawks in an incredibly strong position.

71 Responses to “Seahawks prepared for a ‘depth’ draft?”

  1. AgentJ says:

    Giacomini has played well between the whistles, but the false starts and post-play antics have been driving me batty. I would not mind in the least if the Hawks spent another high pick on an offensive lineman. Certainly another depth pick should be spent at the position. Tight End is another position to look at, where Evan Moore has been invisible to my eyes (though perhaps he is doing a better job blocking than I give him credit for).
    Linebacker is one position I could see a search for a starter at. Though Hill has performed well there, he still feels like a stopgap until a successor is found.

    • AlaskaHawk says:

      Giacomini was responsible for the unblocked blitzer that sacked Russel Wilson and stopped our first drive against Arizona. He played better after that!

      The concern over picking a wide receiver in the first reminds me of our anxiety after picking Curry. We would never pick a linebacker in the first again. But after Wagners performance I would be happy with another top round lb.

      • Rob Staton says:

        Giacomini wasn’t responsible for that play if memory serves me correctly. He was a free runner and Breno would’ve had to let another guy go to take on Groves. From what I remember, Wilson needed to adjust the protection there or the call and just didn’t diagnose the defense correctly.

        • AlaskaHawk says:

          Yes he was a free runner but Giacomini didn’t see him and double teamed another defender instead.

          • Rob Staton says:

            Which is almost certainly what the play call asked him to do. He was a blitzing rusher. We can’t scapegoat this guy.

            • dave crockett says:

              This.

              It was the same play AZ used to get a hit on Vick earlier in the season, the play where they got the scoop & score. The onus is on the QB to account for the free rusher. The tackle looks inside.

              Thanks for beating this drum Rob. Giaco is a perfectly adequate startting RT. He got his first roughing penalty since before the bye on Sunday (in a typically chippy SEA-AZ game w/ lots of flags).

              • AlaskaHawk says:

                If it’s the same play, then Seattle should have prepared for it, and Giacomini should have known it could happen. You can’t let a blitzer through unblocked just because you chose to double team someone else. Wilson is lucky he didn’t get hurt on that play.

                It happened so quick that it doesn’t matter what the QB sees – he will get tackled either with the ball or without. I’m not scapegoating = I assume that he made the adjustment as it didn’t happen again in the game.

    • Snoop Dogg says:

      Why does everyone think we need to draft a starting WLB when we have Malcolm Smith?

      Sure he has injury concerns, but he also has a 4.44 40 yard dash at 226 lbs. He has done good to great in the games he has started. Check out his scouting report. He is another late round gem of the John Schneider era.

      http://www.nfldraftscout.com/ratings/dsprofile.php?pyid=71859&draftyear=2011&genpos=OLB

      • Rob Staton says:

        He’s done a fantastic job so far in two starts.

        • Attyla the Hawk says:

          And really, he is a physical example of just what this article was about. We had 9 rookies make the team, either the 53 man roster or the practice squad. And Smith is a second year guy who made it as a depth pick. He’s even now still developing.

          We look at needs like 3 tech, and WR. Tate is a third year project who is now popping as a legit starter. Durham didn’t turn out, and the fact we didn’t take one last year leads me to think that we may be double dipping in the WR pool this draft if the talent warrants.

          We took Jaye Howard and Greg Scruggs this year. These are guys that are depth players that probably won’t pop until next year or 2014.

          CBs? We have Maxwell and Sherman as 2nd year guys, and Lane as a first year guy. Even Thurmond as a third year guy. We have already ‘pre drafted’ for need at this position and these guys have been developing in anticipation of depth need. Obviously Sherman is the grand slam. But Lane and Thurmond and Maxwell have developed as one would hope. It’s one of our deeper/more talented and most recently invested in corps on the team.

          We have 10 picks this season. And honestly, the depth on this team is really very good. Not just good, but it’s been stocked and developing already. To the point where today’s needs are now possibly served by yesterday’s investments.

          This team is in such a healthy state right now. And we can really thank the Wilson grand slam pick for that. It looks like this team can pretty much go any way they want to. I’m not convinced we won’t look to add higher impact players at some point soon. Either this year or next.

          I’m also not discounting the notion that Seattle just starts plowing under todays picks for better picks in the future. With no discernable needs today, and great depth virtually everywhere — it would make sense to start plowing under our picks for better picks next year (similar to how New England operated). Seattle is in a MUCH better position to execute that plan that the Patriots are/were. Our team is WAY younger than NE was when they started doing that. And our ability to get talent deep in the draft has been much better than the Patriots.

          If we wanted to start turning our #1s for future #1s + picks — this would be a year we could start that strategy. If we’re looking at depth — and we’re looking at the prospects that Rob listed here — then we don’t need a #1 this year to get 2 of them. We can trade to a 2012 #2 and a future #1 and still get the quality depth/development players listed.

          We should be selling top picks. Get our depth and stockpile future draft stock. We have the ability to suitably address our depth/development needs, while ensuring we can do even better in the future.

          Given that we’ve tried to/or succeeded in moving down with every first round pick we’ve had save the Okung pick — I’m curious to see if our current roster stability will now permit John to consider trading for future picks instead of current year picks. Something that the rebuild process prohibited in 2010, 2011 and 2012.

          • Zach says:

            I actually wonder if they might not do the opposite. While obviously there is a great deal of value to be found in rolling draft picks over, they also are (as previous illustrated by Rob and others) in a very strong position roster-wise. While they could use their draft picks for the purposes of accumulating more depth (and that might well be the best way to use them), they could also entertain thoughts of using said picks to move up in the draft if there’s a specific player who could pay immediate dividends. I’m not saying they should or will do this, but considering where they are on the win curve, it would make a certain kind of sense.

            • Attyla the Hawk says:

              If the draft was set up with elite prospects at areas of weakness, I would agree. As is, it’s a deep draft with no real headliners. I mean last year the top 7-8 players were pretty set in stone. This year there isn’t even agreement in the top 3. The mocks are scattered to the winds on who takes who. Guys in the middle of round one on this site are late second/third round prospects elsewhere.

              It’s the kind of draft, where good talent evaluators are going to separate their teams from others if they have a volume of selections. Obviously there are some clearly great fits to what we want. I’d say as far as pure fit and talent goes, Cooper, Barkley and Ogletree stand alone as the very best fits for what we ask our guys to do. Warmack is a player of such quality that a team maybe changes what they ask because he’s so great.

              Richardson is a good, not great, 3 tech. In a good draft he’s a low/mid 20s guy. I really do think that this years’ 2nd and 3rd round players are going to have a large number of really good pros.

              Also, it’s important to consider that this team is young, but one of the drawbacks of being so epically good at adding players by the half dozen, is that their contracts all expire at the same time. Right now, we’re one offseason away from having to extend the 2010 class. And it’ll be the first opportunity we have to preemptively extend the 2011 class. There are a LOT of names there:

              Baldwin
              Chancellor
              Thurmond
              Tate
              Wright
              Sherman
              Moffitt
              Thomas

              Additionally, there are some older vets we will need to replace:

              Clemons
              Mebane
              Branch

              And some cap killers that will need to be removed or adjusted

              Rice
              Miller

              I believe Okung signed a 6 year deal. So he’s not due for awhile. But the simple fact is, we are going to have to have replacements for some of those names because we can’t resign them all.

              Depth/development picks are going to have to replace some of those pillars of our team And they won’t be ready unless we draft for them now. I don’t see moving up for the sub elite prospects available this season to be worth more than getting ahead of the salary cap assault that is just over the horizon.

              • Zach says:

                That could be, I’ll freely admit I know very, very little about this draft class, though I will say that a lot can and will change between now and April (in terms of perceptions of players, team need(s), and of course where the Seahawks actually draft). That said, I do think it’s something the team should consider, whether now or at some point down the road, because I do think you can look at the Patriots as a bit of a warning as well as a model. They constantly traded back and accumulated picks, and then hit a dry spell in several consecutive drafts. While having more picks is good, and having later picks isn’t all that debilitating if you have good talent evaluators, it is still true that most of the talent in any given draft will be in the first round, and usually at the top of it.

                • Attyla the Hawk says:

                  Well to be honest, that’s what we’ve done too. We have traded back multiple times every draft. NE has simply not selected very good talent. Often times picking for need from a position of relative weakness in terms of draft stock.

                  Clearly there are two components to trading back and getting volume. You still have to get good players. Which means you have to know who they are and where they are likely to go.

                  Seattle has been very VERY astute in knowing how far they can go. And they’ve also had the cajones to basically take their guys even if it’s early and results in draft day criticism. This FO doesn’t just move back for moving back’s sake. They move back because the guys they like they think they can still get where they move to.

                  Just because NE has failed doesn’t make it a bad idea. We’ve done it just as much as they have — just not as regularly or spectacularly. And also we’ve not traded todays picks for tomorrows better picks — mainly because NE was smack in the middle of their SB runs and we were starting over from scratch.

                  Now things have changed for us. And it’s smart to trade draft stock in a weak year for draft stock in a future year. The quality of players could be a lot better. You could luck out and get a really good top 10 pick from your trading partner. And you have the ability to push 2 first round picks to move up for a guy that can make a very real difference to your team.

                  If Coleman doesn’t come out this year, 2 firsts next year might be the price that gets him. Say you move down to the 2nd this season, get an Arthur Brtown and Markus Wheaton in rd 2, then have the ability to get Coleman in 2013 — possibly even without trading up at all. Not a bad result in trading down in 2012

                  • Zach says:

                    Sounds totally reasonable to me. I think this is generally the right way to approach the draft, and you’re right that PCJS haven’t hesitated to draft the guys they want. I just wonder if we’ll see them get aggressive near the top of the draft, whether this year or next.

              • Seahawk_Superbowl says:

                This is a great point. There are so many rook contracts that will be needing attention soon. I can see us stockpiling these positions (CB, WR, SAF, OL) and letting them compete for a roster spot with cap hits in the back of the thought process. DL is the main need I can see the team should target in this years draft. I like Scruggs and Howard but more competition can’t hurt. Clemons/Branch/Jones etc. are getting old are are nearing contract extensions or new contracts which may be too much towards the cap after signing some of the younger players.

      • dave crockett says:

        Not so much a starter, but LB requires constant replenishment. Look at how rapidly Leroy Hill is fading. Also, considering Smith is a high injury risk it would not surprise or disappoint if PC/JS look long and hard at Ogletree as a huge upside pick who would not need to start on day one.

        • Alaskan says:

          Leroy Hill may not be the best example – after all, he’s been here what, 7 years? Meanwhile, our other starters are 2nd years (Smith & Wright) and a rookie. It would seem we could be set for at least a few more years. Maybe Lofa would be a better example of falling off quickly.

          Still, I thought I’d heard that LB isn’t quite as important a position to our defense as it is to others, so it would seem odd to me to be considering early investment in a position that has such youth and perhaps lesser value to our team. I would expect later round picks to replenish the depth, but not draft day 1 or 2 so much.

    • Elijah says:

      Still just don’t get the calls for another offensive lineman. It’s not a need, at all. Unless someone like Luke Joekel or Chance Warmack fall to us late 1st round, why do it? We’re ranked 3rd in run block, 16th in pass block. That’s an above average offensive line, pushing towards being one of the best. Not a lot of teams are this lucky

      If it’s the penalties that are driving people crazy, plugging in new bodies and destroying the chemistry of our line isn’t going to help. The more our starting 5 plays together, the more fluid they are going to get.

      • A. Simmons says:

        If Warmack falls, we must get him.

        • Attyla the Hawk says:

          Agreed. If we were talking grade at position he would dwarf all others by miles. This is an all pro waiting for a team to play for.

          He could well be the best in the NFL the day he walks onto his first rookie minicamp. I’ll be super pissed if St. Louis lands him. Having to deal with Iupati and Warmack 4 games a year is going to be brutal.

      • kevin mullen says:

        We’ve invested a lot of cash in our line over the past three drafts, with Sweezy and Rishaw Johnson drafted in late rounds last year, anybody drafted for our OLine is coming in day3.

      • Rock says:

        We are 16th in pass blocking (sacks allowed) and we throw less than every team in the league. Also, we do not run particularly well to the right edge. Bevell avoids that side with Marshawn. I have seen Marshawn have to cut it all the way back left on plays to the right. Giacomini is fine as a road grader and when blocking down but fails to find anybody out in space. When he does he is late and draws a penalty. The penalties are killing this offense.

        • Rob Staton says:

          We’re actually ranked in the top ten for sacks allowed, I think only six teams have conceded less sacks. Not sure how they tally the pass protection ranking but on Football Outsiders we were 16th.

          • Rock says:

            We are only ranked in the top 10 because we do not throw it much. Wilson had only 13 passes against Arizona. Still our Adjusted Sack Rate is pretty average at 16th,. I would expect us to be well above average with so few attempts. It implies defenses are fairly successful once they get us to third and long.

            My main complaint with Giacomini is his drive killing penalties that put us in third and long. If we had anybody else he would be on the bench. We have no depth at tackle. I shudder to think what would happen if we lost Marshawn Lynch or either tackle. It would be like 2008 when Hasselbeck and Wallace were sitting ducks and went down 36 times or 2009 when they went down 41 times. Before long we would lose Wilson and then the franchise is back to square one.

  2. Jlkresse7 says:

    Hey Rob I was wondering why you’re not as high on Terrance Williams as other people. What are his pros and cons?

    • Rob Staton says:

      I’m just not really blown away by him. It’s a pretty relentless passing offense at Baylor and I think that’s part of the reason he’s generated such great stats. H’s about 6-2 and 205lbs but doesn’t have amazing speed like Markus Wheaton or the control and polish of DeAndre Hopkins. Hands can be inconsistent. He’s been really sloppy at times during his career and just doesn’t play with a spark. I’m just not sure I see either a special player with rare talents, or a guy who makes up for it by fighting for every play.

      • Jlkresse7 says:

        What are the odds Hopkins or Wheaton drops to use in the second? That way we could take Richardson or Mosley in the first

        • GH says:

          I’d say Wheaton dropping to the second round is quite probable if the various mock drafts mean anything. I’m a bit confused by those saying he will be a first round pick. I’ve seen very few mock drafts of him in the first round. I’ve not seen him as a first rounder anywhere but here, actually.Perhaps the mocks are just junk and should be avoided, but it seems to me this draft class is lacking the elite WR, but is loaded with 2nd, 3rd, and 4th rounders.

        • Rob Staton says:

          Hard to say at this stage. He’s a lot better than most people think. I’d ignore any site not giving these guys props. That’s just my take.

  3. Aaron says:

    Pete Carroll’s defence has safties over cornerbacks. Here’s a crazy idea: Honey Badger in the 2nd round. Tyrann Mathieu would make an excellent Earl Thomas backup and slot corner/safety.

    • MJ says:

      You could probably draft him much later. Hard to get kicked off LSU, but he found a way. Love the idea, but think he could be had much later.

      I would also love to see Lattimore drafted in R6. Sounds like a great kid. Worthy gamble IMO. I would never expect him to play again, but it could be a nice lotto ticket, plus the kid’s spirit could be an added benefit.

      • CFR says:

        I personally would love to see Lattimore in a Seahawks jersey (even if his rehab means that the earliest we’d see him is in 2014). The Seahawks have a few extra late round picks anyways I think and, since the position should be stable for AT LEAST another year or two, why not try and “beat the curve” and solve an area of need years before it becomes one? If PC/JS have their eyes on a player who they believe is great value late, then I say go for it. But if they don’t and no one on the board jumps out at them, then I think they should call his number. In round 6-7, the players available are mostly low upside guys due to their physical limitations or lack of past production. When a guy’s only question mark is their injury in those rounds and you know he has a high ceiling if healthy, that’s a very good thing.

    • Rob Staton says:

      You won’t need to take Mathieu in round two – he’ll be lucky to get drafted at all. And you can never have enough good corner’s – Pete knows that.

      • kevin mullen says:

        I don’t see us going after Mathieu, especially for defense purposes. The guy is 5’7″ and like 180lbs for a safety. His coverage skills isn’t great but does have a nose for the ball. If he does get drafted (IMO) it should be for his return skills, Leon is getting older and would warrant an understudy.

    • Michael says:

      I would be all about drafting the Honey Badger in the round 5-7 range. Pete does not shy away from guys with “character concerns” and he would be a terror making plays in the slot and on special teams. Also a good point that he could provide safety depth.

  4. MJ says:

    Rob, realistically, who is your ideal pick at 23?

    I know we can’t be sure of who goes before that pick, but assuming your board is correct, who do you personally go after?

    • Turp says:

      My money would be on Sheldon Richardson

    • Rob Staton says:

      I’m going to try and avoiding naming ‘a guy’ if that’s ok. Last year I mocked Courtney Upshaw to the Seahawks a lot, not because I had a ‘man crush’ as some accused me of – just simply because that was the hunch I had. The Seahawks ultimately did take a pass rusher, just not the guy I projected. I’m going to try and avoid focusing on one or two players this year to avoid the systematic abuse (you wouldn’t believe some of the emails I got before this years draft, most from one person).

      What I will say is there are a lot of really good players that fit the Seahawks and would get me off the sofa next April in celebration if their name is called. Sheldon Richardson, Alec Ogletree, Brandon Coleman, Markus Wheaton, Sly Williams, DeAndre Hopkins, Zach Ertz, Arthur Brown, the two guards Warmack and Cooper, Eric Fisher is really growing on me, Jake Mathews, Dee Milliner, Jesse Williams, Dallas Thomas, Robert Woods, Jonathan Banks. I could list more to be fair.

      • Turp says:

        I have no problem with you naming a guy. Personally, I thought the man crush accusations were silly. Cliche, but tt’s your blog man, write whatever you want; but I can also understand wanting to avoid the noise. There will always be critics as I’m sure you know.

        People need to separate a pick recommendation based on personal like and a recommendation based on fit for the Seahawks (scheme, needs, etc). You repeatedly explained the scheme and attitude fit for Upshaw (as well as a need for a pass rusher) and yet still got accused of favoritism. Still seems pretty silly to me.

        I like Sheldon Richardson, Ogletree, and Coleman (assuming he comes out) – but it seems likely that Ogletree and Coleman will not make it to the 20s. Richardson seems like a great fit to me – fufills the need for pass rush @ 3tech, great attitude/motor.

  5. Jeff says:

    This discussion of Carroll’s defensive philosphy would indicate that a lack of pass rush from Branch’s position would be a serious concern.

    See:http://17power.blogspot.ca/2011/02/player-types-seattle-will-be-looking-to.html

    • A. Simmons says:

      This screams pass rushing three tech all the way.

    • Rob Staton says:

      Every single Seahawks fan should read everything written on that blog. Brandon is the man.

      • Attyla the Hawk says:

        “The Will linebacker can be a smaller player. He is generally protected in the defensive schemes and will not see as many blocks. All you want him to do most plays is flow and chase the football. We want our fastest linebacker at this position.”

        After reading this, I would have to think that Ogletree is 1a and 1b. Possibly even a talent that Seattle would consider moving up in the draft for. I noted a ton of things I didn’t like about Ogletree in his specific article, but the things he does well I concede are truly elite. In pursuit, and attacking a vacated hole — this player is NFL ready and elite pre draft. And these are specifically exactly the things that Pete indicates he wants from the position. In truth, Ogletree looks like he was plucked from Pete’s rib by God himself and said, “You shall be a Will Backer”.

        Considering the man crush he had personally for Irvin, I can’t see him being any less hopeful for Ogletree. Just by looking at those citations, I can’t see a more perfect fit for Pete’s specific need in this entire draft.

        • Rob Staton says:

          Totally agree, and it’s why I think Arthur Brown will be an option too.

          • Attyla the Hawk says:

            Moving Wagner to Will?

            Arthur Brown is a guy I’d be saying “Absolutely” for the Mike. He just looks so completely natural and physically capable at that spot. Even though it’s obvious that Wagner is exceptional at the NFL level in that role — I would think his speed and quality would be more able to move to Will than Brown’s.

            I guess I’d be keen on that move too. I don’t see Brown as a Will. He can make his living in the NFL taking on blockers between the tackles. He is crazy good at that.

        • Attyla the Hawk says:

          Even more to the point, We know that Pete/John do identify specific players and will vacate the first round if they can’t get them. Okung/Williams and Earl Thomas/Eric Berry were the 4 in 2010. We don’t know who was the guy in 2011 — I would assume he was one of the DTs taken between 17 and 14 (Maybe Phil Taylor?). 2012, they had 3 (Barron/Kuechly/Irvin).

          The exact formula is shrouded in a bit of mystery. But the nuggets we can see suggests they target specific players and if they don’t fall — they try to move. Assuming that’s the case, I’d have to think Ogletree is on that list already. And may be one of the only realistic players on it.

  6. Michael says:

    BPA!! I am really looking forward to this draft for that exact reason. If only the Seahawks had been in this position in 2011, and taken Jimmy Smith like they should have. Sure would make the Browner/Sherman suspensions a little easier to swallow…

  7. LouieLouie says:

    A good read, Rob. Speaking of o-line, I wasn’t able to tell how well Sweeny played when he had the chance. He seems like a guy who they can develop into a pretty good guard. Did anyone have a chance to watch him?

    One recurring theme around town is about the lack of a pass rush. If there is a pass rushing defensive lineman, interior or a DE, they might take him in the first round. They could also go line backer and keep Hill around for depth.

    • Rob Staton says:

      I’ve got to be honest, I zoned out when the backups came in. I never feel like you can learn all that much when players are facing a team that is already thinking about the flight home. Although watching Sweezy in pre-season, I was amazed how well he performed so soon after converting to the offensive line. So I think he’ll at least provide good depth going forward if Cable can keep honing his skills.

  8. Darnell says:

    I can’t help it, I’m a big fan of Breno.

    Reminds me so much of Jon Runyan. Excellent player/dirtbag when he isn’t doing something stupid.

    The extra stuff is irritating and needs to be minimalized, but you always prefer the guys that you need to reel in as opposed to the wallflowers. Pre Carroll and Schneider the Hawks were a team full of nails, now they’re a team full of hammers.

    That attitude does however have a direct (or is it inverse?) correlation on the amount of “rough” penalties this team takes. Ideally, as this team matures they’ll strike the happy medium of maintaining their mean identity while not committing as many penalties.

    That said, I have to give Sweezy a plus for dropping a headbutt on a fool late in a blowout when the Cards got a little chippy. Publicly they have to say that that is no good, at the facility that gets JR a lot of love for scrapping for his boys.

    • Rob Staton says:

      Breno Giacomini actually had two fantastic blocks just before the roughing call on Sunday. And for the most part, he’s had a good year. He just needs to engage his brain a little more and make sure he doesn’t over step the mark. Is it a position that requires a drastic upgrade though? I would argue probably not unless a can’t miss type falls into Seattle’s laps. And I’ll keep preaching that the greatest thing you can do for an offensive line is keep starting the same guys and let them gel over time into an effective unit.

      • GH says:

        I think it’s safer to assume Breno is what he is, a player that will get more than the usual amount of penalties- costing this team both yards and points at various stages of games. It seems to me it is unlikely for that to change. If he was a great player I’d be willing to live with that, but from what I’ve seen he’s barely average to well below average for a RT.

        This team values RT- they already spent a first round pick on the position and it didn’t work. I would imagine they’re looking at the position as someplace to upgrade.

        • Rob Staton says:

          That’s an assumption to suggest it’s unlikely to change. Really, it’s as likely as it is unlikely. And I have to challenge the ‘average to below average for a RT’ remark. Name me five great right tackles in the league – because I’m not sure I could name five right tackles period. There are Giacomini’s playing RT all over the NFL. And just because the Seahawks drafted a RT before doesn’t mean it’ll happen again. In fact I suspect they maybe learnt something there, about the nature of the position and what they need. Thus, they move Carpenter inside and bring in a guy familiar with Cable’s scheme.

          • GH says:

            It an assumption based on past behavior. It shows that they value the position enough to spend a first round pick on it I use it to counter the assumption that they don’t value the position. Football focus had Breno as one of the worst last time I checked.

  9. cliff says:

    I really want Ansah in the first but he doesnt seem to fit our defense which kills me..
    CB Johnathan Banks in the 2nd and Blidi Wreh-wilson in the 3rd. Wreh-Wilson is aggressive in run support, not overly aggressive as a ball-hawk and he even plays free safety at times. He just isn’t physical at the line, or more he isn’t asked to be. more of a project in that aspect but has high potential.
    I also like Brennan Williams and Justin Pugh as RT in the 3rd round range.

    Also slightly off topic if Ansah was able to add 30 lbs to his 6’6 frame he could be our 3 tech? wayyy too much of a project at that point but i’m just trying to come up with an excuse to draft this guy.

  10. dave crockett says:

    If PC/JS draft an offensive lineman in the top three rounds I suspect the bell may be tolling for Moffitt rather than Giaco. Only once this season have they rotated Omiyale in, and I don’t see any indications of any real challenge in practices. By contrast, Moffitt remains in danger of losing his job outright to Sweezy after 13 games.

    Moffitt played better this week, but was horrendous vs. CHI, and seems to alternate adequate performances with awful ones. If tyey don’t watch out I’m going to develop a thing against these Wisconsin offensive linemen. I haven’t seen the production I expected. ;)

  11. CFR says:

    What people NEED to realize is how lucky we’ve been with injuries. Specifically, think about what would happen if Clemons, Okung, or Rice got injured?
    If Clemons was injured, I would assume that Irvin steps into his role on 1st/2nd down. That means we’d still get pass rush but have a huge liability in the run defense. If it wasn’t Irvin who stepped in, I don’t see anyone else who could provide pass rush at the LEO spot. Therefore, it’d be a huge loss either way.
    If Okung got injured, our line (at least in terms of pass protection) would go from average/serviceable to miserable.
    If Rice got injured, our receiving core becomes a joke. Granted, we’d still have Tate and Baldwin, but they can’t carry the passing offense. I suspect we’d see a vast change to many more multiple TE sets and who knows how that’d work out.
    My point: We have to draft this year not only to improve the starting roster, but to improve depth. The best possible picks would be ones that would be a combination of both. I see receiver as an absolute priority early in this draft. Not only because of how drastically one injury would hurt us, but because of the fact that it’d be a pick that wouldn’t only see the field in the case of an injury. It’d be an investment in a long term starter and a temporary depth player (who can still potentially make plays as a limited starter) at the same time. After that, I’d assume DT/LB will be targeted in R2/R3 unless there is great value at BPA. But later on in the draft, the Seahawks would be wise to grab a tackle or two, as well as a bigger defensive end than Irvin who maybe wouldn’t get as much pressure, but that also wouldn’t be a downgrade from Clemons in the run game.

    • MJ says:

      Amen. Which is exactly why I think late R1 is the perfect spot for a WR. I really would like to see Tate as more of a #3. My only real concern with the WR unit is that nobody is a deep threat. You hardly ever see natural separation which I think would be great to have for a young QB. I really think Tavon Austin could be an option. He could be a slot WR on 1st and 2nd down. On 3rd down, you could line him up in the backfield, move him around, etc. Just think he has natural ability to get space from defenders.

      Honestly, I’d be thrilled with Hunter, Austin, Hopkins, Wheaton, Allen, Coleman, or Patterson at the end of R1.

      I actually really like this years WR class for where we arempicking in the draft. There’s no Julio or AJ Green, but we wouldn’t have a chance at this guys anyways.

      • GH says:

        Seems like a lot of those guys you listed will be around in round 2, though?

        • CFR says:

          Yes but at the same time, as we learned with Russell Wilson and Bruce Irvin, this front office isn’t afraid to pick a bit earlier and be perceived as reaching in order to ensure that they get their guy. Not to mention that this approach has paid off massively as a) both are contributing heavily and b) both wouldn’t have lasted until our next pick (NYJ/SF would have taken Irvin, PHI/IND/WAS would have taken Wilson).

          Furthermore, considering the amount of quality WRs in the draft, I would most definitely not be opposed to taking a WR with both our first AND second round picks. Think for a minute about who we have behind Tate/Rice. We have a bunch of UDFAs: Baldwin (2011), Kearse (2012), and Martin (2009 by the Chargers) . Of those, the only one who has proven that they can contribute more than expected considering their draft stock (or lack thereof) is Baldwin. Even he he hasn’t lived up to expectations this season, although this is mostly due to injuries. So two receivers with our first two picks absolutely seems like a great move to me (especially if you get two different types of receivers, ex: Austin and Wheaton).

          As Green Bay can attest, you can never have enough good receivers. They took Cobb even though he would be buried on the depth chart. Year 2, and this pick looks absolutely phenomenal. With Nelson and Jennings out of the lineup often this year, he has amassed 71 receptions for 777 yards and 7 touchdowns (in addition to 132 yards rushing and his contributions to the return game). Think about who they’d have if he wasn’t there: You’d have James Jones, Donald Driver, and Jarrett Boykin.

          • GH says:

            I think taking a WR in rnd 1 is a reach this year, and doing both rnd 1 and 2 seems a bit crazy.

            I don’t really get the obsession with WR depth. What positions on this roster can you lose two starters and feel ok with what’s left? None. I’m actually more comfy with Baldwin and Martin starting than I am with Leon Washington starting at RB (if marshawn and turbin went down- to parallel your scenario).

            What the Packers have also demonstrated is you can get a lot of WRs later in the draft. Since Schneider comes from that school, I think it likely they use there extra picks there on depth and grooming WRs and use the first pick on a guy that can actually fill a more immediate need (3 tech DT, Will, or maybe, maybe OL if the right guy falls).

            I can’t see them going WR, WR the first two rounds in almost any scenario.

            • GH says:

              And I don’t completely believe that the NYJ were going to take Irvin.

              I think this team has shown they’ll trade down if they can still get their guy. The did last year, in fact, and tried the year they took Carpenter.

              Based on the many mocks I’ve seen, I can only say that right now, today, I can’t see Wheaton as a first round pick. And if Wheaton was picked in round 1, it means there’s a plethora of very similar talent in round 2 unless there’s some kind of bizarre WR “run’ in the first round and second round that is counter to everything I’ve seen about this draft class.

            • CFR says:

              It’s a passing league, you have to at least have a competitive pass game to be able to win games. Also, I never once said anything about an injury to more than one receiver! I only discussed an injury to Rice, which is perfectly fair considering his injury history. I just think that having two new WRs would take us from having zero depth/upside to a lot in one draft. I prefer having multiple options and a diverse group of receivers and therefore wouldn’t mind the front office pouring a lot of resources into solving this position for years to come.

              Your Packer point is based off of your opinion and has no factual backing. Their top 4 receivers were early picks: Jones was a 3rd rounder, Nelson was a 2nd rounder, Jennings was a 2nd rounder, and Cobb was a 1st rounder. In fact, the only established receiver on the team (who doesn’t even start anymore) that was drafted late is Donald Driver (7th round).

              I never said I could see them doing going WR/WR and never even suggested that it was likely either. All I said is that if they did, I would understand and support the move wholeheartedly.

  12. Norm M says:

    So…My question is what the so called draft experts are going to say about Seattle’s draft this year. Almost all of the talking heads graded Seattle a C- in 2012. With Wilson making a run for offensive rookie of the year, Wagner in the running for defensive rookie of the year and Irvin leading all rookies in sacks, not to mention Turbin racking up a 100 yard game in his first real opportunity, I’m wondering if they will still grade Seattle’s picks low or are now believers in the Pete and John show. At least we have Rob and the crew to provide excellent Draft coverage for this year because it is painfully obvious there are some real idiots in TV land.

    That being said, I do feel our biggest needs in order are: wide receiver, bigger the better, a pass rushing interior linemen, and an outside linebacker to replace Hill and add depth. Fill out the rest of the draft card with defensive backs and D Linemen that Cable can convert into starting caliber guards. Who ever they pick I’ll believe in…. Pass the Kool-Aid.

    • AlaskaHawk says:

      My early draft grades:
      1st round Irvin lots of sacks but isn’t a junk yard dog pressure generator = B
      2nd round Wagner has played great but sometimes in wrong position = B+
      3rd round Wilson taking over the starting QB and having good stats =A
      4th round Turbin looks good when he plays, but not playing much = B
      The rest of the bunch is getting worked into the team = C
      What rounds were Smith and jones picked at?

      • Norm M says:

        I agree with all your grades minus the C for the rest. Anytime you have a 7th round pick starting, Sweezy at gaurd, it should get a higher grade. Not to mention that we will most likely see a rookie (Lane) at DB the next few weeks due to suspentions and injuries. Any way you look at it, it was a great draft. I have to believe that with the ability to draft for depth this year Pete and co will unveil even more hidden gems.

  13. Lanky says:

    Rob,

    How would you feel about trying to trade up in the draft to get Sheldon? As you’ve pointed out, this really feels like one of the last positions where we could probably improve, and besides that our current talent is comparatively long in the tooth. Could the Seahawks be in a position similar to Atlanta’s when they took Julio Jones? I got the sense that the Falcons felt they were just a piece short of being a complete team, and they moved aggressively to fill that.

    My sense of Schneider’s philosophy, coming from GB, puts a lot of stock in pick quantity, so moving up would seem uncharacteristic, but I was just wondering what you think of that kind of move, given your understanding of the positional depth available in this draft at various positions. Of course, getting a potential game-changer at WR becomes more difficult of the Hawks start trading away day 2 picks.