Seattle Seahawks combine preview & watch list 2016

February 24th, 2016 | Written by Rob Staton

Friday’s workouts

Auburn’s Shon Coleman has size, length, athleticism and he plays with an edge

Offensive linemen

2015 leaders
40-yard dash — Ali Marpet (4.98)
Vertical jump — Laurence Gibson (33.5 inches)
Bench press — Ereck Flowers (37 reps)

Seahawks performer
In 2011 James Carpenter ran a 5.28 at 6-4 and 321lbs. He managed 23 reps on the bench with 34 inch arms. He was drafted for his excellent run blocking in college rather than a great workout.

Pete Carroll’s self-confessed priority is to get a consistent O-line in 2016. It’s dubious whether he’ll be able to achieve that with rookies. They might prefer to take their chances in free agency — especially if the market allows them to find the 2016 version of Cliff Avril and Michael Bennett.

That said, they’ll probably still need to find at least one prospective starter from this class and some developmental prospects.

We know they have certain ideals at the different positions:

Left tackle: Length and height is crucial, with a degree of athleticism

Left guard: They’ve consistently used converted college left tackles with excellent run-blocking skills and size (320lbs)

Center: They seem to like size — Max Unger is 6-5 and 305lbs — exactly the same height and weight as 6th round developmental prospect Kristjan Sokoli

Right guard: More of a lighter, athletic position with movement skills crucial

Right tackle: Previously a mauling run-blocker but switched to a more athletic profile with Garry Gilliam in 2015

Length is generally important for any offensive lineman and 33.5 inches is a good benchmark for the Seahawks. Justin Britt, a 2014 second round pick, has 33.5 inch arms. It’s hard to imagine they’ll draft a tackle with shorter arms than that. Russell Okung has 36 inch arms. It’s not as much of an issue inside — Unger had 32.5 inch arms and they were comfortable signing him to a long-term contract. J.R. Sweezy has 34 inch arms at right guard. Mark Glowinski’s arms are a shade over 33 inches.

Here are the some of the highlights from today’s weigh-in and measurements:

Tackle
Le’Raven Clark — 6-5, 312lbs, +36 inch arms
Shon Coleman — 6-5, 307lbs, +35 inch arms
Jack Conklin — 6-5, 308lbs, 35 inch arms
Fahn Cooper — 6-4, 303lbs, 35 inch arms
Taylor Decker — 6-7, 310lbs, 34 inch arms
Germain Ifedi — 6-6, 324lbs, 36 inch arms
Alex Lewis — 6-6, 312lbs, 34 inch arms
Jason Spriggs — 6-6, 301lbs, 34 inch arms
Ronnie Stanley — 6-6, 312lbs, 35.5 inch arms
Laremy Tunsil — 6-4, 310lbs, 34.5 inch arms

Interior
Joe Dahl — 6-4, 304lbs, 33 inch arms
Graham Glasgow — 6-5, 307lbs, 33.5 inch arms
Ryan Kelly — 6-4, 311lbs, 33.5 inch arms
Nick Martin — 6-4, 299lbs, 32.5 inch arms
Connor McGovern — 6-4, 306lbs, 33 inch arms
Sebastien Tretola — 6-4, 314lbs, 31.5 inch arms
Chris Westerman — 6-3, 298lbs, 33.5 inch arms
Cody Whitehair — 6-4, 301lbs, 32.5 inch arms

Expect the top performers to significantly boost their stock on Friday. The entire NFL is looking athletic O-liners. Indiana’s Jason Spriggs should test well and could move into the top-15 as a consequence. Remember, not many people saw Lane Johnson coming in 2013. He went #4 overall after a great Senior Bowl and combine (Spriggs was named the best offensive line performer in practise at the Senior Bowl).

Ohio State’s Taylor Decker gets a chance to prove he’s more athletic than people realise. Michigan State’s Jack Conklin is being tipped to crack the 4.9’s in the forty by Tony Pauline which could secure a place in the top-20. It’ll alleviate some of the concerns about his athleticism. He weighed in at 308lbs with 35 inch arms — that’s considerably lighter than in college.

Teams will drool over Auburn’s Shon Coleman’s workout during drills — he has +35 inch arms and is over-analysed in some sections of the media. Coleman is a terrific prospect but medical checks will be crucial to his stock after beating cancer.

Texas Tech’s Le’Raven Clark is technically inept and a major project but he’s the nearest thing to Okung’s size, length (+36 inch arms) and foot-speed. Don’t be shocked if he goes earlier than expected based on the NFL’s desperation for long, athletic offensive linemen. Texas A&M’s Germain Ifedi is well proportioned and carries minimal bad weight — he should do well in Indianapolis. He also has 36-inch arms and could fit at guard or tackle for Seattle. He’s one to keep an eye on.

Nebraska’s Alex Lewis and Ole Miss’ Fahn Cooper are two prospects that could be interesting later on. Expect both to test better than expected. Cooper filled in for Laremy Tunsil at left tackle in 2015 and Lewis is a very athletic lineman who plays with an edge.

In the interior — Notre Dame’s excellent Nick Martin will no doubt draw comparisons to his brother Zack. Cody Whitehair and Ryan Kelly might not test brilliantly but they’re hard nosed, physical blockers. Whitehair will switch from tackle to center. Michigan’s Graham Glasgow fits Seattle’s size ideal at center perfectly (6-5, 307lbs) and he’s incredibly physically and tough up front — a possible ideal pick for the Seahawks in round three.

Arizona State’s Christian Westerman could have an explosive combine across the board. He played left guard in college but might be better suited at center. He’s a must watch. He can bench 310lbs twenty times so he could get near to 50 benching 225lbs. Washington State tackle Joe Dahl is also expected to test well as he prepares to move to right guard.

It’s a shame Ferris State’s Justin Zimmer didn’t receive an invite to the combine. At a recent regional combine he ran a 4.89 and had a 33-inch vertical at 6-3 and 303lbs. He could be the next D-line-to-O-line convert project for the Seahawks.

Tight ends

Tyler Higbee is a catching machine with great athleticism

2015 leaders
40-yard dash — Mycole Pruitt (4.58)
Vertical jump — Mycole Pruitt (38 inches)
Bench press — Gerald Christian (28 reps)

Seahawks performer
Luke Willson (6-5, 251lbs) wasn’t invited to the combine in 2013 but at the Rice pro-day he ran a 4.57 and a 4.46 in the forty, had a 38 inch vertical jump and a 10’2 in the broad. He also managed 23 reps on the bench press.

With Jimmy Graham set to return and the presence of Luke Willson and Cooper Helfet — it’s unclear whether the Seahawks are prepared to pump major stock into this position. Willson is a free agent in 2017 and Graham is returning from a serious knee injury. However — a weak class and better options elsewhere makes this a likely day three target at best.

The Seahawks have generally avoided this position in the draft — despite their desire to feature the tight ends heavily in the offense. They spent a 5th round pick on Willson and a 6th round pick on Anthony McCoy in 2010 (McCoy played under Pete Carroll at USC). Had they not traded their 2010 third round pick to San Diego for Charlie Whitehurst do they draft Jimmy Graham given his extreme athletic profile? In 2013 they chose Christine Michael one pick before Travis Kelce left the board. Jordan Reed was also available at that point.

Arkansas’ Hunter Henry and Ohio State’s Nick Varnett are the two big names but neither is really expected to put on a show here. Think Zach Ertz. There’s very little to get excited about but one name to monitor is Western Kentucky’s Tyler Higbee. He’s a converted receiver who seems to be flying under the media radar. He’s only 6-3 and 243lbs and that could be an issue — but as a move-TE working the seam, Higbee has big potential. He also has excellent hands and plays with an edge.

Florida’s Jake McGee is probably a bit limited physically for the Seahawks but he’s a reliable player and could provide some value later on.

Saturday’s workouts

Quarterbacks

Dak Prescott is mobile and makes plays

2015 leaders
40-yard dash — Marcus Mariota (4.52)
Vertical jump — Nick Marshall (37.5 inches)
Broad jump — Bryan Bennett (10’5)

Seahawks performer
In 2012 Russell Wilson ran a 4.55, managed 34 inches in the vertical and produced a 6.97 in the three-cone drill.

If they’re going to add to this position it’s likely to be someone with a similar skill-set to Russell Wilson. They’ll want to run the same offense even if they’re forced into a quarterback change. Mobility, arm strength and the ability to act as a point guard will be crucial.

Despite claiming they’d look to draft one every year, John Schneider has only pulled the trigger once (Wilson). It’d be cost effective to find a late rounder to act as a backup — but the Seahawks have consistently gone back to Tarvaris Jackson and might have to again in 2016.

Of the quarterbacks attending the combine, there are four that might be of interest. Oregon’s Vernon Adams is short, mobile and a playmaker. He’s often compared to Wilson but has significantly smaller hands and isn’t likely to have anywhere near the same impact. Mississippi State’s Dak Prescott is tall and physical as a runner with some skills as a passer. He’s limited reading the field and needs time as a pro — but he has an intriguing skill-set. Ohio State’s Cardale Jones is incredibly mobile for his size (6-5, 250lbs) and could be the best arm talent in the class. His perceived immaturity and inability to lock down a starting role in college could lead to a fall. Stanford’s Kevin Hogan had an up-and-down college career but he’s mobile and can move around to create plays.

All four might be off the board by the early stages of day three. The Seahawks probably have too many needs to select a guy that early. Let’s hope they kept Tarvaris’ cellphone number.

Running backs

Derrick Henry could be the star of the weekend

2015 leaders
40-yard dash — Jeremy Langford (4.42)
Vertical jump — Ameer Abdullah (42.5 inches)
Broad jump — Ameer Abdullah (10’10)

Seahawks performer
Christine Michael wowed at the 2013 combine with a 4.54 at 5-10 and 220lbs, a 43 inch vertical and a 10-4 in the broad jump. He also had 27 reps on the bench.

The Seahawks will add to this position during the off-season. They previously relied on Marshawn Lynch to carry the running game and while Thomas Rawls flashed major talent in 2015 — they’re unlikely to burden him with Lynch’s workload. John Schneider confirmed during his combine press conference today that they’ll add a couple of guys to the stable.

They’ve generally looked for players who run in the 4.4-4.5 range with a sturdy frame (215-220lbs). I’m less inclined to think their ‘type’ is to do with size ideal as it is style of play. Physical, tough runners who finish their runs and have the ability to gain yards after contact and set the tone appears to be the order of the day. Extreme athleticism will also get a look in — emphasised by the Christine Michael pick in 2013.

Alabama’s Derrick Henry is box office viewing on Saturday. He’s being tipped to run a 4.4 and jump +40 inches in the vertical at 6-3 and 247lbs. If he manages that fresh off a Heisman winning season — he could push his stock into round one and catch Seattle’s eye. One other thing to remember on Henry — he led nation in missed tackles forced (60) and had 29.6% of his explosive carries come in the fourth quarter. It’s not how you start…

The Seahawks like field-tilting athleticism and are willing to turn a blind eye to size ideals if a player excels in many different ways (see: 5-10 Russell Wilson). Henry is a truly unique prospect and even if you’re against the idea of drafting a running back early — make sure you track his progress in Indianapolis this weekend. They took Christine Michael in round two despite having Marshawn Lynch and Robert Turbin. If Henry smashes Michael’s explosive combine performance weighing 20lbs more — watch out.

Ohio State’s Ezekiel Elliott is almost assured of a place in the top-20. Expect a rockstar performance this weekend at 6-0 and 225lbs. He is the complete package of size, speed, quickness, explosion and pass-blocking.

There are alternative options likely to be available later. It’ll be interesting to see how Arkansas’ Alex Collins performs overall. He’s shown an ability to explode into the second level and finish long runs. Can he gets into the 4.4’s? He’s a tough, physical runner and at 5-10, 217lbs fits Seattle’s size ideal. UCLA’s Paul Perkins (5-10, 208lbs) provides ankle-breaking cuts, toughness and speed. He should test well. Kenneth Dixon (5-10, 215lbs), C.J. Prosise (6-0, 220lbs) and Jordan Howard (6-0, 230lbs) are others to monitor. Utah’s Devontae Booker and Arkansas’ Jonathan Williams will not workout.

Georgia’s Keith Marshall (5-11, 219lbs) could also be an intriguing case and a candidate to be another Thomas Rawls. He was a major recruit for the Bulldogs and Todd Gurley’s original partner before injury hampered his college career. If he can show he’s 100% healthy at the combine he could be a later round or UDFA steal. A forty time in the 4.4’s makes him interesting. He has the potential and became the forgotten man behind Gurley and then Nick Chubb. Auburn’s Peyton Barber is another player to look out for.

Wide receivers

Will Fuller is a dynamic playmaker with the suddenness Seattle loves

2015 leaders
40-yard dash — J.J. Nelson (4.28)
Vertical jump — Chris Conley (45 inches)
Broad jump — Chris Conley (11’7)

Seahawks performer
Last year Tyler Lockett ran a 4.40, had a 35.5 inch vertical and a 10′ in the broad jump.

The Seahawks have a sort of need here — at least for the time being. Jermaine Kearse is a free agent and Doug Baldwin is scheduled to test the market next year. Paul Richardson has been unable to stay healthy and Ricardo Lockette’s future is unclear. Jimmy Graham’s injury also adds to the situation and suddenly the only long-term fixture is Tyler Lockett.

If they’re able to keep Kearse and/or extend Baldwin’s deal the pressure will ease. If they don’t address this position pre-draft and they’re able to fill needs on the O-line and D-line in free agency, it could come into play.

Seattle loves suddenness, athleticism and the ability to ‘win the red-line’ (the area close to each sideline). Their offense is built on running the ball effectively and explosive plays in the passing game. Possession receivers need not apply — this position is all about dynamism.

Baylor’s Corey Coleman won’t run at the combine citing a lack of full health. That’s a shame because he was destined for a big performance and a possible top-20 grade (Coleman will still jump the vertical). It could leave the door open for Notre Dame’s Will Fuller to excel. He has the potential to run in the high 4.3’s and cement his place in round one. Fuller is a major threat in space and running downfield. He’s likely to impress teams during meetings in Indianapolis too.

Ole Miss’ Laquon Treadwell also won’t run but arguably doesn’t fit Seattle’s need for suddenness. He’s a very polished possession receiver who could go early — but he’s also a likely 4.6 runner without unique size.

Pittsburgh’s Tyler Boyd is a terrific football player and the heart and soul of the Panthers offense. If he tests well he could jump into the first round discussion. Ohio State’s Michael Thomas is a bigger receiver (6-3, 209lbs) but has the agility of a smaller target and could be a big riser if he runs and jumps well here. Clemson’s Charone Peake is another big target with big-time athleticism. TCU’s Josh Doctson is not the same kind of athlete but is technically very good adjusting to the ball and high-pointing.

All of these players are likely to be gone by the first few picks in round three. Players available later to keep an eye on include Cal’s Kenny Lawler, Michigan State’s Aaron Burbridge, South Carolina’s Pharoh Cooper and Mississippi State’s De’Runya Wilson (who isn’t too dissimilar to Kelvin Benjamin). Lawler in particular offers a nice blend of size, speed and catching technique.

Florida’s Demarcus Robinson could have the best performance among receivers but he earned the title ‘Mr. Suspension’ in college and has terrible catching technique. He is a special athlete though.

Tennessee’s Marquez North could be a later round wildcard. He was a key recruit and flashed as a freshman before disappearing in college. He has a ton of upside, size and speed. He’s one to monitor this weekend.

Sunday’s workouts

Defensive linemen

Sheldon Rankins secured a likely top-20 grade at the Senior Bowl

2015 leaders
40-yard dash — Danielle Hunter (4.57)
Vertical jump — Owamagbe Odighizuwa (39 inches)
Broad jump — Owamagbe Odighizuwa (10’7)

Seahawks performer
Last year Frank Clark put on a show with a 4.79 forty, 38.5 inches on the vertical and a 7.08 in the three cone drill — all at 6-3, 271lbs and 34.5 inch arms.

During a conference call yesterday, Mike Mayock suggested defensive linemen will go in rounds two and three this year that would’ve been first round picks in previous drafts. The depth at defensive tackle is incredibly rich — with one caveat. There aren’t many interior pass-rushers. It’s a class full of compromises — you’re either getting size, strength, motor, quickness or a combination of two traits. There isn’t that one genuine top tier DT that goes in the top-10 like Ndamukong Suh or Gerald McCoy. There also isn’t anyone with the kind of pass-rush quality Aaron Donald and Kawann Short flashed in college.

What do the Seahawks need? We’ve highlighted it many times. The big difference between 2013, 2014 and 2015 is the production of one player. Clinton McDonald had 5.5 sacks in 2013. Jordan Hill, McDonald’s replacement, had 5.5 sacks in 2014. Hill had zero sacks in 2015.

If they’re able to retain Ahtyba Rubin and Brandon Mebane — or find cheap veteran alternatives (a consistent approach for this front office) — they could focus on finding an explosive interior rusher to get the kind of production they lacked in 2015.

Get-off is incredibly important and that initial burst of speed. The defensive line drills at the combine are as important as any (along with the cornerbacks). Who separates with great mobility, quickness, a strong punch into the pads and doesn’t tire quickly?

The Seahawks haven’t drafted a run-stuffing defensive tackle earlier than round four. Their highest pick so far on a DT is Hill in round three (2013). They’re unlikely to draft a modest athlete in round one so even if it’s one of the bigger guys at +300lbs — they’re going to need to possess unique traits, athleticism, quickness and length to interest the Seahawks.

Nobody is likely to match Aaron Donald’s sensational performance in 2014 — he ran a 4.68 at 285lbs with a 1.59 10-yard split. Focus on those split times for all defensive line prospects on Sunday. Anything in the 1.5’s is elite even for an edge rusher — so any defensive tackle that breaks that barrier or runs in the low 1.6’s will be intriguing to a team looking for an interior rusher.

The bench press is generally an overrated exercise. It’s more of an endurance test than anything — and has no relevance to a game where you have to show short, explosive bursts of power not long consistent stretches. However, a guy who benches 35 times like Donald clearly has natural strength. So it’s not a totally hopeless exercise — just don’t worry too much if a guy only manages 25 reps compared to others that hit 40. The player who benches only 25 times might be able to do one heavier rep than the guy making 40.

Concentrate on every prospect here. You’d be doing yourself an injustice to leave anyone out. Here are some of the names of particular interest…

— Alabama’s A’Shawn Robinson is built like a Greek God but plays within himself and doesn’t dominate, offering minimal pass rush. He should test well across the board and if he does — teams will bite on the upside. Can he show more at the next level?

— Mississippi State’s Chris Jones is a former #2 overall national recruit who generated major buzz in High School. He has supreme size (6-6, 308lbs) and athleticism and could easily be the type of player the Seahawks fall for. He’s very disciplined in the run game and has untapped pass rushing potential. Can he put in a really good workout and record a nice split to get into the discussion at #26?

— Louisville’s Sheldon Rankins dominated the Senior Bowl and isn’t likely to last until #26. He’s the nearest thing to Aaron Donald in terms of playing style although he’s not quite the same exceptional pass rusher. It’ll be interesting to compare his performance in Indianapolis to Donald’s. He does weigh nearly 20lbs more so keep that in mind. Tony Pauline reported the Seahawks have a first round grade on Rankins but he’s likely to be off the board in the top-20.

— Ohio State’s Adolphus Washington might be the best pure pass rusher at defensive tackle in this class. He wins with head fakes, swim/rip, excellent get-off and he uses his length (34 inch arms) to great effect. He’s flying under the radar a bit due to a lack of overall consistency and some character concerns. A great performance at the combine will get the hype factor going again.

— Baylor Andrew Billings and Louisiana Tech’s Vernon Butler are both big — and Butler has 34 inch arms and a similar physical profile to Muhammad Wilkerson. Butler isn’t anything like the same kind of pass rusher as Wilkerson but they share similar traits. Billings is an athletic, powerful prospect who plays with ill-discipline in terms of gap control and he tends to freelance a lot trying to get to the quarterback. He’s incredibly strong and could be a star on the bench press.

— Michigan’s Willie Henry is disruptive, powerful and he has some pass rush quality. He’s close friends with Seattle’s Frank Clark. In another year Henry could be generating some first round hype but such is the depth of the class. Keep an eye on him — he could be a steal in rounds 2-3 as a player capable of rotating into a line-up as an impact player.

— Indiana’s Darius Latham was part of a loaded recruiting class that set a mission to put Indiana football on the map. He’s a very underrated athlete with good size and he swim/rips very easily and can be a disruptive force. He could be one of the better testers at the combine and push his stock right into the second round range.

— Florida’s Jonathan Bullard lacks ideal size to play inside and could be better as a 3-4 end — he’s also a high-motor, high-effort player who relies on the bull rush. One anonymous scout is quoted as saying, “Bullard isn’t special” and he doesn’t look like a great athlete. That could eliminate him from contention for the Seahawks. This is his chance to prove he has a higher ceiling than expected — although I wouldn’t anticipate an eye-catching performance.

— Penn State’s Austin Johnson is 325lbs of intense, high-octane physicality that just never stops motoring. He’s quick for his size — as emphasised by an incredible scoop-and-score on a fumble return during the season. Don’t be shocked if he raises a few eyebrows on Sunday and moves quickly into the early second round range.

— Appalachian State’s Ronald Blair III is one of the better pass rushers in the class and he dominated Clemson during the 2015 season. He plays inside and out and could develop into a very successful three-technique or specialist rusher. He received interest from the SEC before going to Appalachian State.

— Ole Miss’ Robert Nkemdiche might be too much for most teams in terms of red flags and he could sink into round two like Randy Gregory a year ago. Even so, he was compared to Jadeveon Clowney as a High School recruit and can get a bit of momentum back into his stock at the combine.

— Nebraska’s Maliek Collins plays without a pass rush repertoire and he’s a bit too predictable working the interior. He’s a former wrestler though and he knows how to battle. He’s also quite the athlete and could shine here. He has the upside to be a productive interior rusher but the flashes were too few and far between in 2015.

A note of caution — based on trends since 2010, the Seahawks are unlikely to draft anyone with sub-32-inch arms at defensive tackle.

The edge rush class isn’t quite as exciting. Joey Bosa and Noah Spence will likely go in the top-12 but after that it’s just a case of seeing who runs a 1.5 10-yard split. Cliff Avril had a 1.50, Bruce Irvin a 1.55 and Frank Clark a 1.59. That’s what the Seahawks look for coming off the edge. Explosion.

Clemson duo Shaq Lawson and Kevin Dodd seem unlikely to crack the 1.5’s. Michigan State’s Shilique Calhoun had a thoroughly underwhelming college career but he might get into that range. It’ll be interesting to see how well Oklahoma’s Charles Tapper and Penn State’s Carl Nassib test.

Overall we’re left waiting to see who emerges from this group.

Linebackers

Deion Jones could be an ideal fit for Seattle’s defense

2015 leaders
40-yard dash — Vic Beasley (4.53)
Vertical jump — Davis Tull (42.5 inches)
Broad jump — Bud Dupree (11’6)

Seahawks performer
Kevin Pierre-Louis ran a 4.51 at 6-0 and 232lbs. He also jumped 39 inches in the vertical. Explosive.

Speed, speed, speed. That’s what the Seahawks have generally looked for at linebacker. Bobby Wagner ran a 4.46 at his pro-day, Bruce Irvin and Kevin Pierre-Louis both ran 4.50’s. K.J. Wright is the exception — but he provided fantastic range, incredibly long arms and physicality.

Part of fielding such a stout front four is having a group of linebackers that can fly to the ball, work through traffic and make plays. Seattle is unlikely to move away from raw speed and athleticism.

Unless the Seahawks start one of Pierre-Louis, Eric Pinkins or Mike Morgan — they’re going to need to replace Bruce Irvin. Pierre-Louis was unconvincing in spot-duty in 2015 while Morgan actually replaced Irvin in some games.

Forget about finding a direct replacement for Irvin. He was the best pass rusher in college football for two years, recording 22.5 sacks for West Virginia. He had the athleticism and range to work at the LEO or at linebacker. Nobody in this class — and in most draft classes — has this kind of profile.

Georgia’s Leonard Floyd is best at linebacker because he’s very athletic and capable of covering receivers downfield. He was disappointing as a pass rusher in college and probably needs to make a permanent switch to OLB whether that’s in a 4-3 or a 3-4. He should test well in Indianapolis and could go in the top-25.

There are four key linebackers in this class with the potential to go early. Two won’t workout due to injury — Notre Dame’s Jaylon Smith and UCLA’s Myles Jack. Ohio State’s Darron Lee and LSU’s Deion Jones will likely capitalise to really enhance their standing. Lee in particular is a dynamic playmaker with top-15 potential. Jones could crack the first round if he performs as expected. He had five sacks and a pick six to go with 99 tackles in 2015. Jones is the only one of the top-four likely to be available at #26. He’s explosive enough for Seattle and plays well against the run — he’s a thoroughly modern NFL linebacker in the Telvin Smith mould. He’s also terrific on special teams.

Utah State’s Kyler Fackrell could be an intriguing pass rush convert for the Seahawks as a LEO. He lives in the backfield and is a splash play specialist. He needs to run a 1.5 in the ten-yard split to have any chance of going at #26. Georgia’s Jordan Jenkins is in a similar position.

Ohio State’s Joshua Perry is such a fun player to watch — it’d be cool to see him have a good combine. He’s a terrific leader with a real nose for the ball. Oklahoma’s Eric Striker was a big-time playmaker for the Sooners breaking their record for sacks by a linebacker. Boise State’s Kamalei Correa needs to back up some of the first round talk.

Washington’s Travis Feeney has injury-flags but if he presents an athletic profile here he could be a later round option as someone who can do a bit of what Irvin did. He could also act a key special teamer and maybe split time with a Morgan or KPL.

It’s worth keeping an eye on the safety class too for potential linebacker converts. The en vogue thing at the moment is to try and find a Mark Barron or Deone Bucannon. USC’s Su’a Cravens, Duke’s Jeremy Cash and Southern Utah’s Miles Killebrew are candidates to make the switch.

Monday’s workouts

Cornerbacks

Xavien Howard is tall, long and a big-time playmaker

2015 leaders
40-yard dash — Trae Waynes (4.31)
Vertical jump — Byron Jones (44.5 inches)
Broad jump — Byron Jones (12’3)

Seahawks performer
Richard Sherman ran a 4.56 at 6-3 and 195lbs. He has 32 inch arms. He also managed a very good 38 inch vertical.

Seattle’s size ideal at corner is strict and obvious. They value length and won’t draft a corner with sub-32-inch arms unless, perhaps, it’s an explosive athlete working the slot. They’re unlikely to target the position early unless the player is truly explosive. The earliest they’ve drafted a cornerback is Walter Thurmond in round four in 2010.

They have a stable of young corners already and might only add to it on day three if they lose Jeremy Lane in free agency. They’ve regularly targeted rounds 5-6 for this position.

They also have a specific technique they teach and it takes time to learn. A player drafted in this class is probably unlikely to start quickly but for an exceptional circumstance. That probably also weakens the possibility of an early pick at corner.

The Seahawks already traded a sixth round pick for Mohammed Seisay. Like Kelcie McCray (see below) he has to be included as part of this class and might be their ‘day three guy’ this year.

Houston’s William Jackson III and Baylor’s Xavien Howard are tall, long, athletic playmakers with five picks each in 2015. They could push towards the late first round if they outshine the likes of Clemson’s Mackensie Alexander and Ohio State’s Eli Apple. Alexander didn’t record a single pick in college while Apple only had one in 2015. A lack of size could hurt the pair too so they better be fast and explosive.

Florida’s Vernon Hargreaves is one of the more overrated players in the class. He bites on double coverage way too much and is a liability tackling in the open-field. He could face a similar fate to Bradley Roby — being taken later than originally projected to work exclusively as a slot corner.

LSU’s Rashard Robinson, Miami’s Artie Burns, Notre Dame’s KeiVarae Russell, West Virginia’s Daryl Worley, Northern Iowa’s Deiondre’ Hall and Oklahoma’s Zack Sanchez are players to monitor. Check the arm length, check the speed and watch how fluid they are changing direction during drills. Hip torque, suddenness and fluid movement is all crucial.

Safety

Kelcie McCray might be Seattle’s safety pick in this draft

2015 leaders
40-yard dash — Justin Cox (4.36)
Vertical jump — Kurtis Drummond (39.5 inches)
Broad jump — Justin Cox (10’9)

Seahawks performer
Kelcie McCray ran a 4.54 at 6-2 and 202lbs — among the fastest times at the position in 2012.

Seattle spent their fifth round pick on Kelcie McCray. While many fans have discussed the possibility of adding a safety this year — McCray likely already filled that spot. His physicality and speed are a major plus for the Seahawks. He turns 28 in September but McCray showed he can start when needed and he has terrific special teams value.

If Kam Chancellor did leave the team — and there’s nothing to suggest that will be the case as of yet — McCray likely steps into the starting role.

Pete Carroll puts great value at the safety position and it was a major priority in 2010 when he joined the team. They spent the #14 pick on Earl Thomas and drafted Kam Chancellor in round five. Since then they haven’t really had to focus too much on drafting safety’s. Last year they took Ryan Murphy in round seven but he didn’t make the roster.

Florida’s Keanu Neal might be the best player available — but it’s a close battle with Boise State’s Darian Thompson, Ohio State’s Vonn Bell and West Virginia’s Karl Joseph. All are likely to leave the board before the Seahawks begin to think about drafting a safety.

Maryland’s Sean Davis didn’t look comfortable at cornerback but hits hard, has shown some playmaking qualities and has a shredded physique at 6-1 and 201lbs. He speaks three languages (English, French and Chinese) and could be a depth/developmental project at either corner or safety (he has +32 inch arms).

Clemson’s Jayron Kearse gets a lot of hype for his size (6-5, 220lbs) but he had a poor 2015 season — frequently taking bad angles, whiffing on tackles and just not looking very good. He needs a good combine to get some positivity back into his stock.

Miles Killebrew — who could face a switch to linebacker — is expected to have the best performance among safety’s.

226 Responses to “Seattle Seahawks combine preview & watch list 2016”

  1. Attyla the Hawk says:

    The length in the OL group this year is really really good. We know that Seattle has been unable to get to the selection range necessary to draft OTs in recent years. This year it looks like we should have attractive options.

  2. J says:

    Brandon Shell has some good size. Four year starter at tackle in the SEC.

    • Greg Haugsven says:

      He might be a perfect guy for the tackle convert to guard guy Rob was talking about. He has good size.

  3. Nick says:

    You are the man, Rob. Thanks so much. Do you have any thoughts on RB Peyton Barber? And Garnett?

    • Volume12 says:

      Barber is one of the most ‘Seahawky’ backs in this class. Intriguing talent, size, backstory, and production all line up nicely.

      FWIW, and take it with a grain of salt because they’re bound to meet/interview a lot of prospects, but Seattle has already met with Josh Garnett.

      • Trevor says:

        When I read that story about Barber I said to myself I better go watch some tape of this guy because he sounds like a Seahawks pick.

        What range do you think he will go Vol?

    • Rob Staton says:

      Barber great back story. Middling tape. Let’s see how he tests.

      • TannerM says:

        Yeah, watched a Coleman video of his games against Ole Miss and Texas A&M (mostly to take a look at Avery Young, who honestly wasn’t that bad looking), and it was Jovon Robinson that popped up quite a bit at running back. He might be an interesting back to look at for next year.

      • JimQ says:

        RB-Peyton Barber, rSoph, Auburn, 5-96/225, 4.64/40?
        1-st year starter in 2015 with 237/1016/4.29-yd-avg/13-TD’s rushing & 11/112/0 receiving. http://www.cfbstats.com/2015/player/37/1054370/index.html

        Did you know he is a 2-nd cousin to RB-Marian Barber? If you like Peyton Barber, you’ll want to see the very recent piece by Matt Waldman (link below), if you haven’t already. Waldman is pretty high on him as an NFL RB. The tape review points out a lot of things he’s good at and a few where he could improve. Alltogether a positive review from a respected analyst. I’ve watched 100’s of hours of tape review by Matt and I personally have learned a lot from same.

        These tape reviews are generally around an hour of time, and IMO is time well spent, much more so than highlight tapes in particular.
        http://mattwaldmanrsp.com/2016/02/24/rsp-film-room-no-75-rb-peyton-barber/

  4. Volume12 says:

    Great piece Rob.

    Highlighted everything.

    W.Virginia’s S KJ Dillon is exciting. Underrated and would be a great pick in the 6th or 7th. If they go safety.

    Texas Tech’s Le’Raven Clark. I get the concerns over technique, but also the fact he came from a spread offense. So did Russell Okung. Just wanted to mention that.

    • Trevor says:

      I think Clark could definitely be in play. Cable thinks he has to retrain all OL coming out of college anyways. He is almost a clone to Okung physically.

      I really think they could go Chris Jones Rd #1 and Clark Rd #2.

      I am still hoping for Rankins or Coleman in Rd #1 but I think both will be gone.

      • Volume12 says:

        I think they could to.

        Coleman and Clark are the 2 OTs I could see them target early. Ifedi could be very similar to James Carpenter IMO, but with a much more chiseled physique.

        Let’s not forgot. Ifedi isn’t exactly a technician either.

        • Ukhawk says:

          I question why there would be strong interest in the other Clark or Ifedi. Yes technique can be practiced but seriously these guys instincts/habits on tape look horrible. Take guys who are actually effective and look natural to train up, please

        • Ukhawk says:

          Really question why there would be strong interest in the either Clark or Ifedi. Yes technique can be practiced but seriously these guys instincts/habits on tape look horrible. Take guys who are actually effective and look natural to train up, please

          • Volume12 says:

            The NFL values length. You can’t teach it. It’s an absolute must in today’s game.

          • Trevor says:

            Offensive Line is a postion where technique can be taught and trained up more than any other position. The skill set, size, length and quick feet those two guys have are incredibly rare and could allow them to be elite Tackles if they can be coached up. That is why you take a chance.

            It is the exactly the same reason College Tackles who are great technically like Whitehair get moved to Guard or Center becasue they don’t have the length to play tackle in NFL no matter who proficient they are technically.

  5. Trevor says:

    Awesome write up to prep for the combine! Thanks again for all the hard work. This really is the best draft blog on the net hands down.

  6. Fantastic article. I can’t wait for the draft to hurry up and happen! Or at least us get way closer so mock drafts by you (and others) are much more refined. Pumped about the possibilities.

    I have two thoughts:

    1) At TE I really hope we re-sign Coffman. He’s 29, 6’6, 250lbs, and I really liked what I saw from him in 2015. Pete raved about his instant chemistry with Russ, how Russ instantly found him on the field and loved his catching radius. They also raved about how quickly he learned the system and could play impactfully. And lastly I noticed him blocking in pass pro and rushing situations and I really liked what he did in both. Assuming the FO agrees I think the TE group of Luke, Chase and Cooper sounds pretty good, with a hope for Jimmy to come back at some point (but prepared for him not to).

    2) I am pretty high on Dahl. He was measured to have 33 1/8″ arms at 305lbs. Can play OT and OG, and could be one of those guys you have play Center. He is tough and good and yet (right now) isn’t a 1st or 2nd round guy, it seems like he can be gotten in the 3rd. If we get just one O-linemen in this draft a guy with his versatility would be great. If we lost Okung he could compete for OT, if he doesn’t make the cut there he can compete with Glow at RG, if Glow looks ready to play then you can have him compete with Lewis at Center where he most likely wins.

    My only question really is; To play LG can he (or say Glow) just put on weight or do they not fit the profile even at 325lbs?

    – @PFF_Gordon Joe Dahl has talked with teams about playing both at tackle and guard. Our 7th highest graded OT in this class.

    – @PFF_Steve Steve Palazzolo Retweeted Gordon McGuinness Give him a shot at OT

    – @SI_DougFarrar Doug Farrar Retweeted Steve Palazzolo Told me they played 80-90 snaps per game, ballpark. That’s going to be a big advantage for some teams.

    Obviously not proof of anything but very intriguing. The potential versatility is enticing whether we lose Okung or not. Would love to see LT: FA vet/Gilliam, LG: FA vet, C: Dahl, RG: Glow, RT: FA vet/Gilliam.

    The only thing that sucks is it would be the best if he could slot right into LG, then we could draft him and a Center like Glasgow both in the 3rd round and if we could re-sign Okung… Okung, Dahl, Glasgow, Glow, Gilliam…that would be a sexy line. But idk if Dahl can play LG and I doubt he can put on 20lbs by week 1.

  7. AlaskaHawk says:

    I like Alabama tight end OJ Howard – but I see he is returning to college for one more year. I hope the Seahawks get him next year when he is available. Should be a mid round pick with a good upside. He does know how to block and has good hands for receiving.

  8. Attyla the Hawk says:

    Here’s an alternative thought:

    Given that the value in this draft is not interior rusher (a lot of big athletic multi purpose and run stuffing types). Does it make sense to burn 3m+ in cap space for Rubin and Mebane each? When you could be filling these roster spots with younger guys on rookie contracts. From a talent perspective — not adding much that we don’t already have. But you’d be rebooting the cycle on you base defenders and allocating that cap money elsewhere.

    Basically, flip the script on DT versus OL acquisition.

    Seattle has said they want continuity. And OL picks are very often fraught with failures. Not to mention the aforementioned lack of preparedness that college rookies have for the NFL game. Whereas at least in this draft, you’d be getting day one quality DTs.

    We want continuity on the OL. That strongly suggests veteran players. Instead of drafting 2-3 OL and by virtue of having to train them for one to two years — resulting in draft picks that factor into the roster for only 2 or so years before they move on. Seattle spends it’s cap on OL, and takes advantage of the economy of the position at DT.

    We’ve stated quite often that run stuffing DTs are not overdrafted and are fairly easy to acquire with lower picks. If that be the case, then why wouldn’t we take advantage of that economy and keep rookie deal DTs there forever. Using the cap savings on veteran OL players who don’t need a year or two in the system just so you can stand to put them on the active 53.

    This draft really seems like a perfect opportunity to flip the dynamic. Getting guys in day 2 that would otherwise be day 1 players in other drafts. Moving on from the 2nd contract DTs that we have saddled ourselves with. Using that cap spend on OL players.

    Basically, it’s working like this currently (draft OL/pay DTs):

    we have ~11m to spend on our LG/RG/1T/3T positions in total.

    We have chosen to spend 8m on the 1T/3T and about 3m on the LG/RG. We end up drafting guys from an exhausted prospect pool. We lose 25% of their contract value due to training curve.

    If we switch it (draft DTs/pay OL)

    We spend 8m on OGs, and 3m on DTs. We end up drafting guys from a plentiful pool — rarely even 1st round picks needed. We get the full 4 years service before their second contract.

    The cap implications are identical. But we’re now reloading talent at a position where it’s far easier to get quality at. And we’re maintaining consistency in the OL which we are to now understand is crucial for the team according to PCJS.

    • Volume12 says:

      Makes much more sense from a money stndpoint to spend a 1st on an O-lineman over a run stuffer.

    • Rob Staton says:

      One of the reasons is Seattle’s scheme demands discipline and savvy. I suspect it’s very difficult to ask rookie DT’s to not only master their jobs but also shut down running games against grown men veteran OL’s. It might be appealing to save $1.5 or even $2m on a run stuffer looking at the draft. But the risk of losing what you had and taking a big step backwards in run defense could be back breaking.

      Plus, the upside performance of a run stuffer who may or may not work at the next level is minimal. Other positions just give you a better shot at finding a great.

  9. Volume12 says:

    Duke S Jeremy Cash could be a really good S to LB convert.

    Inteterested to see what he does and measures in at. Exciting player.

  10. BHarKnows says:

    All this talk of consistency makes me scratch me head a little. On the one hand, we hear “consistency” being stressed, which would seem to run counter to anything other than keeping what we’ve got. Regardless of a veteran or a rookie they will be new to the system. Granted the vet probably picks things up faster. I worry that they will pass on talented guys in a deep draft and overpay in FA to keep the OL consistent… But that it will be consistently mediocre. I disagree that having the same five guys is more important than getting talented guys. It would make sense if you had some really talent guys and have them grow together and fix a need for years. Rather than have this patchwork nonsense they seems to have every year. Clearly I’m not making any decisions but it seems odd to keep trying the same thing and not yield results. It definitely held this team back this past season.

    • Rob Staton says:

      Not consistency in terms of keeping the status quo — PC referred to a consistently performing O-line.

    • J says:

      I think they are looking for players who are consistent. Sweezy was really boom or bust with his play.
      Schneider put it perfectly – we are looking for guys who are smart tough and reliable. Not necessarily the SPARQ guys but lunchpail linemen. Having a tough time seeing projects like Clark, who lack those traits, with our early picks.

      • Ukhawk says:

        Bingo on Clark

        • Volume12 says:

          That’s why Josh Garnett makes sense to me. Whether they draft him or not, this dude is all grit, toughness, and physicality. He is a run blocker extrordinare.

          He’s got some impressive length for the interior. 33 7/8″ inch arms.

          Watch for the guys who score highly on the 3 cones and 10 yd splits when it comes to the O-lineman.

          • CHawk Talker Eric says:

            Broad jump for OLers

            • Volume12 says:

              That too.

              Didn’t TC say earlier in the year he likes guys that put up at least 25 reps, broad jump 9 feet, vert 27″ inches? Might have been for OT’s.

              And obviously if a guy compnsates enough in one area, or is outstanding in a couple of them, or a couple inches short he’ll overlook that.

              But, I coulda swore he mentioned that last off-season when describing what he looks for/likes.

              • CHawk Talker Eric says:

                Thought I read somewhere a long time ago the one metric Cable really focuses on for OL is BJ. That and 10-split. In other words, outlier results for those 2 metrics overshadowed average/weak results elsewhere.

          • Ukhawk says:

            Or Boone @ 3m for < Sweezy. Would fill LG and allow GLow at LG. With saved draft pick of Garnett in 2nd/3rd you could upgrade at C, 3T, LB

          • Ukhawk says:

            Alternativy Boone @ 3m for < Sweezy. Would fill LG and allow GLow at RG. With saved draft pick of Garnett in 2nd/3rd you could upgrade at C, 3T, LB

            • Rob Staton says:

              Boone at 3m is a bit of a pipe dream though isn’t it?

              James Carpenter’s APY is 4.7m.

              • Ukhawk says:

                Really? Disagree

                http://12thmanrising.com/2016/02/22/seahawks-should-consider-free-agent-alex-boone/

                According to Sportrac:

                Alex Boone signed a 2 year deal in 2014, $6,000,000 contract with the San Francisco 49ers, including an average annual salary of $3,000,000. Total cap hit was 6.7 for 2 years. Yes cap has gone up but he is now 29, will be 30 so ain’t get ting younger and wants to join a winner

                • Rob Staton says:

                  He didn’t sign a new deal, he reworked the contract to get more money and had a no-franchise tag clause inserted:

                  “Boone held out of 49ers’ 2014 training camp in hopes of getting a new contract. He ended his hold-out on September 1, 2014 after reworking the last two years of his contract. His new contract increased his total pay for 2014 and 2015 from a combined $3.7 million to $6 million, as well as, prevented the 49ers from franchising him after deal is completed.”

                  He’s going to get significantly more than $3m on the open market.

              • Ukhawk says:

                Rob. Also u see Pauline has upgraded M North to a 5th round projection. No longer a FA BUT shows youve got a great eye.

    • CHawk Talker Eric says:

      The word Schneider used today was ‘cohesion’.

      • 12thManderson says:

        Besides the thought of keeping the current group together. Cohesion immediately jumped my thought process to the draft. Examples Conklin/Allen Mich St, Alexander/Hawkins LSU, Murphy/Garnett Stanford… What this means, I don’t know. But I figured I’d voice that thought to get responses

        • BrianH says:

          The other thing he said that worried me was, “In terms of our philosophy we are going to keep attacking it the same way we always have…” I think even the passive observer can say that whatever process they are using isn’t necessarily working very well. I understand PC wants to be the best rushing team in the NFL. But I think we can attribute their success less to Tom Cable’s coaching “genius” and more to the on the field genius of BeastMode and RW3. Seems to me in order to have “cohesion” or “consistency” they need same guys playing next to each other for a while, not frantically patchworking the line through every preseason. The draft is the best way to do that.

          • CHawk Talker Eric says:

            Continuity – consistent existence/operation of something over a period of time.
            Cohesion – the action of forming a united whole.

            Continuity implies keeping the same personnel, regardless of the quality of the OL. Cohesion involves finding the best combination of personnel to produce the highest quality OL.

            I think it’s unfair to characterize their process as not working very well. Since 2012 – 4 straight playoff appearances and back-to-back SB appearances. Two drafts (2012 & 2015) that resulted in the top 3 picks being solid Year 1 contributors (Irvin/Wagner/Wilson, Graham/Clark/Lockett), an almost unheard of level of success in any single draft, let alone two in 4 years.

  11. GeoffU says:

    Wow Rob, gonna take me awhile to read all this. I don’t comment too much on here, but I don’t think I could make it through the offseason without this blog. Hell of a job you do!

    I think I could get very excited about Henry. He seems like a special of a kind talent. Tyler Higbee looks very intriguing, the kind of uniqueness this team craves — will have to look at some video. Not a ton of production in college, but he did miss four games last years looks like. What round do you think? We’d probably have to snag him in the third? I could easily get behind Higbee and Henry starting the season while Rawls and Graham rehab.

  12. Brandon says:

    Personally, I would like to come out of this draft with 3 Offensive Lineman.

    1. I’m going to assume that Sweezy is gone for sure, and there is maybe a 50-50 chance that Okung leaves.

    2. I’m hoping that Minnesota cuts Loadholt and we are able to sign him to a 2 year deal and have him compete for LG and RT (preferably win the LG position).

    3. In the draft, draft one of the top tackle prospects, Decker, Coleman, Conklin (in order of who I prefer) and have them play RT.

    4. In the third round we draft Glasgow and have him compete for the C position against Lewis.

    5. Finally in either the 4th or 5th (not exactly sure where their current stock are), draft Dahl or Fahn Cooper. I prefer Dahl because he can probably play C, RG, or RT so his addition would add great depth. In training camp he would most likely compete with Glowinski for RG.

    In the end, we end with a O-line consisting of:
    Gilliam – Loadholt – Glasgow – Glowinski/Dahl – Decker/Coleman/Conklin

    With backups consisting of Poole, Britt, Lewis, and Sokoli.

    I understand that Pete has talked about consistency on the line, probably meaning more veteran talent, however this arrangement has an outrageously tall ceiling, and I would argue that it has a fairly high floor as well. Anyways, a man can dream!

    • GeoffU says:

      Do people like Dahl because he’s a Cougar, or because of his talent? Or both? People always try and fit him in somewhere.

      I’m a Coug so I’m pulling for him and would love to see us draft him, but I wonder if he’s as good as we make him out to be? Looking forward to seeing how he does at the combine.

      • Brandon says:

        I don’t have a favorite College team, so I like him based off of talent. He is the kind of guy that just gets the job done.

        • CHawk Talker Eric says:

          Dahl has talent. And decent size, athleticism, length and versatility.

          It’s a good plan Brandon. I really like Glasgow. But I wonder if all 3 OTs you listed will be drafted before 26.

          • 12thManderson says:

            You DON’T want Loadholt, he’s TERRIBLE, I’ve seen ALL of his play time in MN, he’s a massive liability. Massive in size and risk. He’s a penalty machine and the mean streak you assume by looking at a human his size, is non existent.

            • Brandon says:

              Interesting, I’ll look more into that. If you have seen quite a bit of MIN, what are your thoughts on Mike Harris? Could he be another possible FA?

              • 12thManderson says:

                It’s really difficult to judge. He was effective once he got moved to guard and was IMO the best lineman they had last season, his versatility was a plus. I can say what I’ve seen from Loadholt because he’s always been consistently a liability. I’ll never understand what the hell happened to MN’s OL. Khalil went from Stud to DUD and Sullivan had a couple good years, but the fact that they ALL played vs a WEAK, WEAK NFC North pass rush, and couldn’t show any amount of dominancy or value with A.P is pretty condemning.

                MN’s pretty consistant in resigning the players who make good contributions, and I don’t see them letting Harris walk considering that OLs current state. As for him signing with SEA, I’m not sold that he could break our starting 5, hell Glowinski barely got play time and quite a few people are willing to risk allowing Sweezy to walk in order to give Glow a shot (that he deserves), but I prefer to keep Sweezy, let Okung walk unless he comes cheap, and let Britt ride pine ALL YEAR LONG.

          • Brandon says:

            Yea that is one thought I was having. If so, I am a supporter of looking at Corey Coleman. If he is also gone, then probably just BPA.
            I was planning on another scenario of signing Okung to a 1-2 year deal, but decided not to.

            • CHawk Talker Eric says:

              I’m starting to think they resign Okung.

              • C-Dog says:

                John Schneider spoke at pretty good length today about the best lines he’s seen didn’t necessarily have the most talented players, the biggest, or most athletic, but had smart, gritty players that understand blitzes, and can adjust, and work in “cohesion” with each other. Yeah, I think it’s possible Okung returns. I’m starting to think Okung and Sweezy both returning is a possibility. Tough to build cohesion when you are replacing your two most experienced players.

                • Greg Haugsven says:

                  1 year or multiple?

                  • Greg Haugsven says:

                    Makes me think of those mid 90’s Broncos lines. Not super talented but they played together a long time.

                  • C-Dog says:

                    Okung? I kinda think multiple. Sweezy, too. If they can just find some answer at the other guard position, solidify center, shoot you could move Britt back at RT and have him battle it out with Gilliam, and may the best man win. I know everyone is high on Gilliam’s athleticism, but it’s not like he locked the position down at any all pro level. In my mind, he went from terrible at the start of the season to adequate by the end of the season.

              • Volume12 says:

                Signing Okung would give them a ton of flexibility.

                • C-Dog says:

                  Yeah, it really keeps going back to Okung to me as the most important FA to keep.

                  • HI Hawk says:

                    I think the investment in Okung, because he’s a LT is going to be too high for ONE position, I’d rather pay a decent salary to a good LG (maybe the recently released Jahri Evans) and then spend on a good C (Mack or Wisniewski come to mind). Gilliam seems like a more natural fit at LT, playing next to a vet like Evans should help him grow. Britt back at RT is fine with me, and then that really only leaves a developmental (2nd-3rd round) LT to keep Gilliam on his toes and compete with Bailey to be the swing Tackle. I think Center is the single most important OL position for this offense. It takes protection calls off of Wilson’s plate, relaxes him, and steadies the middle rush lanes that are most important for a guy of Wilson’s size.

    • Old but Slow says:

      Personally, and with Pete’s comments about continuity in mind, I do not like a scenario in which we have more than a couple of changes in the O-line. If both Okung and Sweezy leave, than we have little choice but to revamp to an extent. Move Gilliam to LT, probably, put Glowinski at RG(or someone, Glow seems a decent option), find a vet FA to play LG (Britt looks like a career backup), for continuity keep Lewis at center (he brought the team together last year, and while not great, can hold the position), and draft or find in FA a player to mind the right edge.

      Not to get too crazy, but looking at Sokoli’s crazy numbers (SPARQ and such), it might not be too out there to say that he could play a decent tackle.

      Not that I have a great option, but keeping the changes as minimal as possible would fit what this front office seems to want to do.

  13. Steve Nelsen says:

    What an amazing write-up. Great job, Rob.

    One name to throw in the WR mix is D’haquille Williams. He would be considered Rd 1-2 based on his talent. His character issues will cause him to slide. He could be a Day 3 steal if his interviews/background check out OK.

  14. Steele says:

    John Schneider’s word for what they seek is “cohesion”.

    http://www.fieldgulls.com/2016/2/24/11110604/nfl-combine-seahawks-gm-john-schneider-offensive-line

    Problem is, there are different ways to do that. “We’ll see what the draft looks like” also leaves the door open for more Cable experiments. Good luck parsing this statement.

    We will not know what is in store until it happens.

    • C-Dog says:

      He also said it’s not necessarily about adding the biggest, fastest, most athletic type, but someone who is intelligent and gritty, and can adjust. That made me think the experiments might be over this year. Maybe trying to keep your two starters, if you can, maybe even add in FA, and then see what the draft brings. IMO, I think they could be passing on athletic upside types for players that are more plug and play (Martin, Kelly, Westerman, Conklin, etc.)

      • nichansen01 says:

        Take what Schneider says with a grain of salt. This is a time of smokescreens between the general managers of the different teams.

  15. C-Dog says:

    Favorite OL prospect presently include Coleman, Conklin, Decker, Lewis, Westerman, Dahl, Martin and Glasgow.

    Very interested in seeing what Willlie Beavers does.

    Favorite DLs, in order, include Austin Johnson, Jones, Latham, Henry, Butler, and Washington.

    Probably most interested in seeing what Latham does, I suspect Nkemdiche will perform well, but how he interviews will be interesting.

    Favorite LB might be Joshua Perry. I just like his physicality and play. It will be interesting to see how athletic he is. Jones and Lee I expect to put on shows. Fackrell I kind of expect that too. Kind of interested to see what Jenkins does.

    Interested to see what Daryl Worley, and Rashard Richardson do at CB.

    John Schneider indicated pretty strong RB will be a focus. The more I look at Alex Collins the more I like. Henry would be fun, and seems like an outstanding guy. Elliot seems like a no brainer but he kind of spouted out about his coach’s game plan after the Mich St loss. Kind of a red flag to me there a bit. Perkins I like a lot.

    WR, QB and Safety really aren’t on my radar much. Over all, I think my favorites guys are Austin Johnson, Chris Westerman, Shon Coleman, Taylor Decker, Jack Conklin, Nick Martin, Joshua Perry, and Alex Collins. All seem to have that combo of toughness, grit, skill, and production. Plug and play types. All the others I like, I just have some questions on, even if many likely have more upside.

  16. Nick says:

    Rob, do you see Nick Martin’s 32″ arms being a problem for Seattle? Or does it not matter all that much at center?

    • Greg Haugsven says:

      Speaking of short arms and it’s off topic but a guy told me a funny story. Everybody has a cheap friend who never wants to help pay. He calls them T Rex’s cause there damn arms can’t reach to get there wallets, very funny.

    • CHawk Talker Eric says:

      Actually his arms are 32.5″ – the same as Max Unger.

  17. CharlieTheUnicorn says:

    Please please please Seattle. Draft a guy in the first round and second round that is polished at their position. I don’t want a project like the OT Clark and I sure as hell don’t want a CB (or any other position for that matter) that is still trying to figure things out.

    Save the project picks for round 5 or later, let’s get solid day one contributors with the first 3 or 4 picks. Heck, if it came down to it, I would take Henry at #26 over a project OT. At least I know that guy can tote the rock.

    • Greg Haugsven says:

      I agree Charles, let’s get some day 1 contributors.

      • bobbyk says:

        Depending on how free agency goes, I am starting to warm up to the idea of Jones. He looks like Derrick Brooks to a degree. Super quick/fast, hard nosed tackler… I know we all want a good OL and DL, but I’m starting to want this WILL simply because I think when we look back on this draft in 10 years that we’ll say Jones was the BPA. I hope they can do some things on the OL in FA so we can take a great player.

        • RealRhino2 says:

          I just question the value even if he does perform. Let’s say he’s KJ Wright, or slightly better, at WILL. Is that worth a very good (i.e., just under Pro Bowl level, or a sometime Pro Bowl guy like a healthy Okung) LT? Or even RT? And can adequate replacements be found later?

  18. Baldwin says:

    After 6 years of PC/JS drafts (an eternity in the NFL), they have certainly left clues for the astute. Great summary, Rob.

  19. CharlieTheUnicorn says:

    John Clayton mentioned (this afternoon on 710ESPN ~ 1600 hours local) that Dak Prescott is worth keeping an eye on in regards to the hawks. He would be an ideal back-up QB with many intangibles that Seattle might be looking for in their back-up. There are little puffs of smoke around him and Seattle. Then I was reading this article and .. poof, there is his name popping up again. Coincidence?

    • Greg Haugsven says:

      Him or Vernon Adams would be good.

    • CHawk Talker Eric says:

      Word is his stock will soar at the Combine. Not sure how high he rises, but it’s probably more than SEA would be willing to spend.

      • CharlieTheUnicorn says:

        I actually like that the top 7 QBs are choosing to compete in the combine. It is the first time in many years this has occurred. This should help the WR and TE when they are trying to snag passes from these guys…. and it gives everyone an equal “show”. I think it is a very smart move for all of them, proves they are all professionals and willing to compete.

        • CHawk Talker Eric says:

          Agree. Also, with respect to Kenneth, I think the Combine is as important for QBs as any position. Aside from the interviews, QBs (and WRs/CBs) actually get to demonstrate their skills in passing drills. An afternoon of sharp passes with finesse and touch, or long, downfield strikes, does wonders for a QB’s stock.

  20. Greg Haugsven says:

    The damn draft is still over 2 months away. I love the draft so much I think I hate it. It consumes all my time. Anyone wake up in the middle of the night and start thinking about who the Hawks will take at 26? Your not going back to bed.

    • bobbyk says:

      Yeah. Sometimes I love it. Sometimes I hate it. It consumes you. Gotta try to get busy with other things. lol

      • Greg Haugsven says:

        Yes you do, it’s best to try and stay busy and not think about it. To bad I have a cell phone that also allows me to read stuff.

        • Steele says:

          It’s best not to get emotionally invested or put in extreme amounts of effort and time. Because chances are good that they will not do what your or I want them to!

  21. cyrus t says:

    Rob what round do you see Xavien Howard going in, and do you think the seahawks would take him before round 4?

  22. Darth 12er says:

    Everybody was talking about how much they wanted Tretola. Does his 31.5 inch arms change anything?

    • nichansen01 says:

      Not for me.

    • CharlieTheUnicorn says:

      If you can get him for the right value, say 5th round.. you do it. I certainty would not be in favor of him in the 3rd, but stranger things have happened.

      • nichansen01 says:

        I would gladly draft him the third.

        • CharlieTheUnicorn says:

          Looks like he has a 3rd round grade on one website. They have a Westerman as a late 2nd round pick as well. It appears the second round pick for Seattle will be the sweet spot for guards in the draft.

    • Volume12 says:

      Was never a fan of the Arkansas O-lineman.

      Don’t get me wrong, they aren’t bad players by any means, but overrated.

    • Coleslaw says:

      It’s disappointing, knowing he could struggle because of it, he could still be great depth or spot starter.

    • matt says:

      Sub 32″ arms takes Tretola off the board for me. That’s more based on JS/PC’s draft history, than the player himself. We throw out CB’s and DT’s with less than 32″ arms. It’s every bit as important along the OL.

      • Steele says:

        And I think the rigidity of their litmus test is ridiculous. A half inch rejects potentially great players. Give or take an inch or two, I’d accept that. But no.

        • matt says:

          I tend to agree Steele. The standards are set, so they have to be taken into account when evaluating potential prospects. Tretola just doesn’t meet the standard arm length.

    • Attyla the Hawk says:

      It can change things Darth.

      Honestly though, what you need to examine when these kinds of surprise measurements (good or bad) crop up is, does the tape match the measurements.

      There are certain issues that can arise from having shorter arms. Opponents can get into their frame easier, and their ability to reach players can be compromised.

      Then you have to look at the tape and see if those liabilities manifest themselves.

      It’s not a death knell. But generally speaking if you are deficient in that area, you have to compensate in other ways.

      Three great examples is KJ Wright, Russell Wilson and Tyler Lockett for Seattle.

      KJ is slow. Very slow by Seattle standards. His speed, 10 yard splits and agility scores are very aberrant for pretty much every player we’ve drafted at LB.

      That agility and lack of speed should manifest itself in being out of position and unable to track/cover in space.

      But KJ is long, and compensates with an unreal keen sense to anticipate plays. He diagnoses and reacts faster — putting himself in proper position in that way instead of just being lightning fast.

      Russell is short and should have difficulty both seeing the field and having balls batted down. He doesn’t though. He sees the field very well and his preparation is great and his anticipation improving. He also has developed an over the top delivery which means his release point is probably higher than other QBs with a 3/4 delivery.

      Lockett doesn’t high point balls, his hands are small and he body catches a lot. He doesn’t have a great catch radius. But he compensates in other ways — including route precision and has a very good ability to ward off defenders with his body and to burst through the ball at the very last moment — creating the necessary separation to cleanly body catch passes.

      Each of these players have physical deficiencies which they overcome and render moot because they compensate in other effective ways. And that’s what you need to look for when you see a guy like Tretola measure with short arms.

      Does he play like a guy with short arms. Does he have the kinds of issues that you see with guys that are physically similar.

  23. nichansen01 says:

    My latest mock contains some surprises throughout:

    Titans: Laremy Tunsil
    Browns: Jared Goff
    Chargers: Jason Spriggs
    Cowboys: Carson Wentz
    Jaguars: Sheldon Rankins
    Ravens: Jalen Ramsey
    49ers: Ronnie Stanley
    Dolphins: Jack Conklin
    Buccaneers: Joey Bosa
    Giants: Noah Spence
    Bears: Myles Jack
    Saints: Deforest Buckner
    Eagles: Jaylon Smith
    Raiders: Darron Lee
    Rams: Paxton Lynch
    Lions: Taylor Decker
    Falcons: Laquon Treadwell
    Bills: Robert Nkemdiche
    Colts: Chris Jones
    Jets: Ezekial Elliot
    Texans: Derrick Henry
    Redskins: Ashawn Robinson
    Vikings: Shon Coleman
    Bengals: Eli Apple
    Steelers: William Jackson
    Seahawks: Deion Jones
    Packers: Corey Coleman
    Cheifs: Vernon Heagreaves
    Cardinals: Andrew Billings
    Panthers: Will Fuller
    Broncos: Jihad Ward

    Explanations:

    Jason Spriggs athleticism causes him to skyrocket into the top three.
    Chris Jones and Jihad Ward are linemen that I beleive will impress enough at the combine to warrant a first round selection.
    If Will Fuller runs an impressive 40 time its hard to imagine the panthers passing on a younger, faster and better version of Tedd Ginn to compliment Kelvin Benjamin.
    Deion Jones to the seahawks in the first? Highly possible. My alternate picks would be Andrew Billings and Cody Whitehair.

    • CharlieTheUnicorn says:

      I’m 95% sure Mr Wentz is going to the Browns. After the Hue Jackson size of hands on QB comment, lead pipe lock of the week.

      I have no idea what the Rams will do, I’m not sold on Lynch. I’m not sure they would be either. Treadwell would make more sense to me, if he were available to them. Actually, Treadwell to the Lions also makes a ton of sense.

      Please, football gods, not Will Fuller to the Panthers. That would give me heartburn. 😛

      • nichansen01 says:

        Interesting, I wasnt aware of this comment.

        In regards to Treadwell, I can’t imagine st. louis passing of Lynch if he is still in the board. I also have a strong feeling that the lions will go offensive line, even though Treadwell makes a ton of sense.

        But if the falcons draft treadwell, just imagine him lining up with Julio jones. Wow.

      • Trevor says:

        I agree Charlie I think you can rule out Goff to the Browns and almost lock in Wentz based on Jacksons comments and the division they play in.

        Browns- Wentz
        Cowboys- Lynch
        Rams- Goff.

        • CHawk Talker Eric says:

          DAL don’t want Lynch. They want Wentz. Maybe bad enough to trade with TEN and beat CLE to the punch.

  24. Volume12 says:

    Okung’s tweet is interesting.

    ‘No goodbyes. Sometimes you have to declare your love to areas that love you.’

    • Coleslaw says:

      Hmm.

    • Trevor says:

      Interesting for sure. If they resign him boy it give us a lot more flexibility doesn’t it. Take a guy Garnet in Rd #2 at to play LG and a Center like Glasgow or Allen with the 3rd round comp or 4th rounder and our line is set.

      LT-Okung
      LG Garnett
      C Lewis / Allen/Glasgow/Sokoli
      RG Glowinski
      RT Gilliam

      • EranUngar says:

        After last year, I’ll be shocked if Lewis does not start the year at Center. It is a lesson we paid a lot to learn.

        They may draft his replacment for 2017 this year.

        • Trevor says:

          There will be a competition at that spot for sure no matter who we draft with Lewis and perhaps even Sokoli.

        • matt says:

          EranUnger- Agreed Lewis is likely to be our starting C next year. If we take a C prospect he would have to have the position versatility to backup multiple positions-Westerman, Glaskow etc.

          • Rob Staton says:

            I’d be very surprised if Lewis is the starting center. A guy they didn’t even trust to start over Nowak — and came in only after they’d thoroughly exhausted the Nowak experiment. I’d expect at least a veteran center to come in, if not a draft pick.

            • EranUngar says:

              Rob,

              IMO, both the “Center competition” during training camp and starting Nowak instead of Lewis were possibly the biggest mistakes Cable did to start 2015. Once Lewis was brought in the OL has made a huge step forwards.

              You keep using that mistake as an argument against Lewis, instead of a lesson for Cable.

              It would be like saying that Golden Tate is the worst locker room cancer in the NFL because they decided to keep Harvin over him.

              They make mistakes. They realize them and rectify them. A rookie Center would be another mistake.

              • EranUngar says:

                Is Richard Sherman is a pathetic excuse for a CB because they trusted Trufant to start ahead of him and they trusted Thurmond to replace Trufant ahead of him…

              • CHawk Talker Eric says:

                You mean like it was a mistake for KC to start a rookie Mitch Morse at C?

                There’s no mistake starting a rookie at a position (or position group) he played in college.

                • EranUngar says:

                  Starting a solid rookie in a position he played in college is much better than starting a convert, especially a DL convert. It helps if he steps into an OL that does not have two more players playing a new position for the first time and has a veteran QB to call protection behind him….

                  • EranUngar says:

                    And the mistake was personal. Nowak was not the better choice for Center. I think we can all agree about that. Why should that clear mistake define Lewis?.

                  • EranUngar says:

                    I can’t see the logic here.

                    Mitch Morse did well as a rookie for KC hence starting Nowak over Lewis was not as mistake?

                    Or Mitch Morse did well as a rookie for KC hence Lewis is a poor choice because they started Nowak?

                  • CHawk Talker Eric says:

                    You stated “A rookie Center would be another mistake.”

                    My answer (in question form) was meant to point out that starting a rookie at C isn’t necessarily the problem. KC started a rookie at C and he turned out to be one of the best in the League.

                    The problem SEA had was they started a rookie DL convert.

                    It would not be another mistake a la the ‘Nowak Experiment’ if SEA draft someone like Martin/Westerman/Kelly/Whitehair/Glasgow and start him at C.

              • Rob Staton says:

                I don’t use it as anything other than to portray they clearly didn’t think that highly of Lewis. It can be both a mistake and not a review of any faith in Lewis as a long term option.

                And the Tate/Harvin comparison has zero context to this discussion.

              • matt says:

                “starting Nowak instead of Lewis were possibly the biggest mistakes Cable did to start 2015. Once Lewis was brought in the OL has made a huge step forwards.” Eranunger

                Agreed. PC said in his press conference today he viewed the 2015 OL performance as 2 halves. The first half was a disaster, while the second half they really grew and the offense as a whole flourished. The insertion of Lewis into the starting lineup was instrumental in the growth of the OL unit. This is what I believe JS/PC are referring to when they talk about consistency and cohesion being most important along our OL. The whole OL performance being greater than the sum of its parts. Lewis has been a solid starter at C for us, with our offense setting team records with him in the lineup. There’s a familiarity between him, OL, Russell and the coaches. Solidarity is to be valued.

                I think there’s somewhat of a knee jerk reaction to the first half meltdown against Carolina among the community. It was a team wide meltdown, not just the OL. Nobody had it going. Can the OL be improved through the draft? Absolutely, but lets remember how we viewed OL at this time a year ago. We pretty much all viewed it as a big draft and FA need. How many games were started by rookies and FA’s brought in during the offseason? 1 game by Glowinski a 4th rounder, replacing an injured Sweezy.

        • CHawk Talker Eric says:

          Really? Lewis lost out in TC to Nowak – a converted DT who’d never played C before. If SEA draft Martin or Kelly or Glasglow, or even Whitehair/Westerman/Dahl, I suspect any of those would beat Lewis for the start.

          • C-Dog says:

            Here’s what I kind of see following the scenario Seattle re-signs Okung. Glowinski likely inherits RG, if a deal is not made with Sweezy. Gilliam stays at RT, Britt slides back to RT to battle it out with him. One quality starting veteran, probably not a big name blue chipper, is added to the line either at LG or Center. One quality rookie lineman is added to compete for the other starting position. Lewis stays as insurance through camp, and maybe the 53. Another vet, more of a journeyman starter type, is added for depth and insurance. Other rookies are added to provide stronger depth and competition.

          • Steele says:

            If they begin the season starting Lewis or Nowak, that would be a disappointing sign that 1. a rookie isn’t ready 2. new veteran signing isn’t ready or not as good as expected. They need to solidify C once and for all, and not have to tinker anymore.

            • EranUngar says:

              In what universe putting a rookie to start at Center instead of the guy that actually helped solidify the line when he came in equals “not having to tinker anymore”?

              • CHawk Talker Eric says:

                Just because Lewis was an improvement over Nowak doesn’t mean he’s the answer at that position. Once again, he didn’t even win the start out of TC. And before you bash Cable as being wrong on that, remember he doesn’t make personnel decisions in a vacuum. If Nowak was THAT bad in practice, there’s no way he would have been named starter just because Cable said so.

                • EranUngar says:

                  I do not bash Cable.

                  I state clearly that since we know now that preferring Nowak over Lewis WAS WRONG, we can’t use that as a supporting argument against Lewis.

                  If you think his is a problem – state it and your reasons. The mistake made in camp is not a reason.

                  • CHawk Talker Eric says:

                    Hopefully, we can agree that, as far the coaches were concerned (not just Cable, but Bevell and PC as well), Nowak impressed them more in TC and practice than Lewis did, such that he won the start over Lewis.

                    I’m sure we can agree that Lewis was clearly better in games than Nowak.

                    That tells me the coaches weren’t necessarily ‘wrong’ about Nowak vs Lewis, but rather they thought Nowak had a higher ceiling that he might reach if given the opportunity.

                    The fact that he couldn’t reach that ceiling in no way diminishes the fact that the coaches thought more of his ceiling than they did of Lewis’s, which doesn’t bode well for Lewis long term.

                  • Volume12 says:

                    I’ll be shocked if Lewis is the starting C as well.

  25. Volume12 says:

    If all of these O-lineman arms are measuring in a inch or more longer than measured at the Shrine and Senior bowls, makes me wonder how long some of the CBs arms are gonna measure come Sunday.

    • Trevor says:

      If that is the case Deiondre Hall is going to have the longest arms, wingspan ever measured for a CB. I know he is incredibly raw but man Pete has to be drooling over that length.

    • matt says:

      Good point Vol12. Could put Javon Hargrave back in the mix too.

  26. Old but Slow says:

    About arm length, how is it measured? From under the arm? Over the arm, but then from what point? It’s a bit like measuring my manhood. Is it from here, or is from there?

    Not trying to be difficult, but I would think that there is a lot of room for subjectivism and it would be better to just measure wing span.

    I compare it to the basketball measures of height. A guy who measures 7′ might have a long neck, but is he really taller than the short necked guy who measures 6′ 10? Maybe they should measure basketball players to their shoulder?

    Are we talking measurable length or functionable length?

    Just trying to stir the discussion.

    • matt says:

      In basketball they measure standing vertical reach too.

      I always assumed they measured arms from the armpit to fingertip, but don’t rightly know…

  27. C-Dog says:

    Been having a few thoughts on alternatives to revving up the interior rush outside the draft in FA that wouldn’t necessarily brake the bank. Mike Neal was drafted as a pass rush 3 tech out of Purdue by the Pack. He’s played DT/DE and most recently OLB for them. Definitely versatile. He’s a free agent that Schneider would be aware of. That’s the rational FA thought.

    The crazy one is none other than Quinton Coples. Played a fair amount of 3 tech DT in college. Played pretty much out of position with the Jets. Cut by the Fins. I know he’s thought of generally as a bust, but he was still somewhat productive for NY in the sack department. If he doesn’t get immediate play on the market, which I think could be pretty likely, do they take a look at him? Only 26, closely comps in the measurements to Malik Jackson who is going to get a fat contract somewhere. Could be more humbled now and hungry. Is it crazy to think a motivated Coples could step into this defense and have an impactful role inside? There’s be some thought out there that his best position in the pros could be 3 tech in a 4-3.

    Personally, I’d rather see this team land Austin Johnson, Sheldon Rankins, or Chris Jones, even Adolphus over bringing in Coples, but this follows their history pattern of relying on veteran additions at bargain rates.

    • matt says:

      Desire is the biggest question mark with Coples. Does he want to play? He was miscast as an 3-4 OLB in NYJ. An opportunity to play to his strengths could light a fire under him. I’m not holding my breath on Coples ever playing up to his level of talent.

      • C-Dog says:

        Yeah, that’s the big question. I wouldn’t spend a lot of $ bringing him in, not with a other needs, and a deep DT draft. Talent wise and youth, I think some desperate team could throw a lot of $ at him, but if that doesn’t happen, and he wants to chance to flourish some as an interior rusher for a year, and then hit FA again still young, an affordable low risk/no risk contract would be the ideal scenario. A motivated Coples could be an interesting addition.

    • Steele says:

      Mike Neal and Q.Coples make a lot of sense for them to explore.

      Neal has been versatile and reliable for GB, would be a good veteran presence. Coples has been miscast since entering the pros. He needs to be a situational pass rusher first and foremost. He’s only 25. That he has been forced to play DT and some LB can be viewed as training.

      • C-Dog says:

        Yeah, the versatility factor of Neal and Coples is interesting. Either feels like a Seattle move in FA. Hard for me to imagine they passing on DT in a draft as deep as this, but when looking at their history, they do like relying on vets. Question is how reliable Coples would be. Neal would seem more likely.

  28. EranUngar says:

    A few remarks:

    Carpenter was actually a better pass blocker than run blocker when he was drafted –
    “Carpenter grades out as a good pass blocker but just adequate in the running game”

    Frank Clark had a mediocre 40 – 4.79. However, he did have the most amzing 20 and 60 yards shuttle times (historically great). 4.05 20 yards shuttle time was the best in 2015 and second best only to Irvin’s 4.03 in 2012. 11.22 60 yards shuttle time was the best in 2015 by half a second. His 3 cone time was one hundredths of a second slower than the best time in his draft class.

    • Rob Staton says:

      Whoever graded Carpenter in that way was flat out wrong.

      4.79 is not mediocre. It was the sixth best forty yard dash among defensive lineman in 2015.

      • EranUngar says:

        OK, i stand corrected.

      • EranUngar says:

        As for Carp – the above quote came from NFL.com.

        Draft countdown had similar view –
        “- Doesn’t get a great push in the run game
        – Not real stout at the point of attack”

        But, here is a true classic about Carp –
        http://seahawksdraftblog.com/my-thoughts-and-scouting-report-for-james-carpenter

        • Rob Staton says:

          That article was by Kip — not me.

          From my own personal experience watching countless games of Carpenter, he was a tremendous run blocker. That was his calling card. We often highlighted how vital he was to Mark Ingram’s production. And the Seahawks said their priority in the 2011 off-season was to improve the running game. So that seems to confirm my take. It’s simply not true that he was better in pass pro. A bizarre take.

          • EranUngar says:

            Kip had very high hopes for Carp.

            The Seahawks had to upgrade the run blocking if they wanted to become a run first team. After picking Okung a year before they picked Carp to be a big that big physical RT they like so much.

            IMO he was a very solid LG that did not get the respect he deserved from the Seahawks fans. He gets it now from the jets fans.

            I saw that many here would welcome Breno back if he is available. Another OL member that was loved by Seahawks fans.

            Now, so many here would celebrate if we replace Sweezy…makes you wonder….

  29. Trevor says:

    For all the talk about these guys height, weight, length etc. the things that just seem to make the most sense are.

    #1 QB Hand Size – Bigger is better that one only makes sense. I think the fact that Goff has tiny hands and Wentz has big hands makes him a lock to Cle particularly after Hue Jacksons comments.

    #2 Tackle Arm Length- Longer is better this is why guys like Whitehair who are great college tackles get moved to Guard or even Center in the NFL. It is also why teams look at LaRaven Clark and Germain Ifedi and see an athlete who could be an NFL tackle despite suspect technique.

    #3 10 yd split, 20 d shuttle and vertical- These are far better indicators of explosion and change if direction and are the #s we should be looking at for DL prospects in particular. We will know exactly who to keep an eye on for the Hawks after we see these #s based on the trends Rob has hi-lighted.

    • TannerM says:

      Hand size could also be the nail in the coffin to any Vernon Adams-Russell Wilson comparisons. Wilson’s hands are a full inch bigger than Adams’. Perhaps that will put an end to all the hopes for the Oregon QB to be drafted as the Seahawks’ back-up.

      • matt says:

        Adams has bigger hands than Goff and Hackenberg. I don’t remember seeing Adams having a fumbling problem.

    • Soggyblogger says:

      Strength for OL is the critical measurement I am most interested in.

  30. David says:

    Hi guys,

    I don’t know if posting mock drafts is too indulgent but would love to share with you guys. This is my ideal scenario. I know the idea (or possibility) of releasing Jimmy Graham is unlikely (and a bit of a sore spot on this blog maybe) but rosterbation is one of the best parts of the offseason so please humor me as I need the cap space for this hypothetical. Maybe there is something they could do, for instance, add another year to his contract with very little new money and spread this year’s cap hit to next year.

    Cap space for UFA: $27mm

    RELEASE

    Jimmy Graham TE (increase cap by $9m – or restructure)

    DON’T RE-SIGN

    Tarvaris Jackson QB

    Jermaine Kearse WR

    JR Sweezy RG

    Bruce Irvin OLB

    Jeremy Lane CB

    Fred Jackson RB

    Jon Ryan P

    Derrick Coleman FB (Brandon Cottom becomes the new FB/H-Back/In-line blocking TE who is bigger, stronger, more athletic than Coleman, not to mention the legal uncertainties at the moment regarding Coleman)

    RE-SIGN

    Brandon Mebane DT ($3m) – take it or leave it

    Ahtyba Rubin DT ($3.5m) – best run defense in the NFL last year, why mess with the formula

    Russell Okung LT ($7m) – one year prove-it deal

    SIGN FA

    Kelechi Osmele LG ($11m cap hit) – you are essentially trading the contract of Graham for Osmele

    Leaves you with a couple mm to fill in some holes where needed

    DRAFT

    RD 1: Nick Martin C

    RD 2: Braxton Miller WR – potentially one of the best athletes in the draft. May run sub-4.4 forty. Provides big body at WR, only reason not a RD 1 picks is because of lack of experience at WR, huge upside and we don’t need a guy who can step in right away

    RD 3: Deion Jones OLB

    RD 3 (comp): CJ Prosise RB – former WR with upside. Can get him relatively cheap since he has only one year as a RB under his belt. Can share carries with Rawls as well as take over 3rd down back/2 minute role

    RD 4: Javon Hargrave DT – widely speculated to be deep with DT in the draft. If you can’t get the fast-twitch pass rusher, why go early. Roster already quite deep at DT with Mebane, Rubin, Hill, Dobbs, Francis, Hamilton

    RD 5 (comp): Fahn Cooper RT

    RD 6: (comp) : Jerrell Adams TE – arguably the best in-line blocking TE in the draft

    RD 7 (from Dallas): Vernon Adams QB

    RD 7: D’haquille Williams WR – a pure late round punt on a high round talent and physique with lack of experience and character issues

    UDFA: Punter

    So the OL looks reasonably shored up with a strong left side: Okung LT, Osemele LG, Martin C, Glowinski RG, Gilliam RT with Bailey, Britt, Lewis and Sokoli as backups

    You may notice the lack of DB’s taken in the draft but just want to note that our 5 and 6 picks this year were traded for Seisay and McCray so you can essentially include them in this year’s draft class and it’s hard to believe JS would have done that unless there was something about them that he liked about them more than what is going to be available late in this draft, plus McCray now has a year under his belt which gives him a leg up on any rookie. From a CB perspective, I am hoping one of Simon, Jean-Baptise (a 2nd rounder 2 years ago), Shead, Seisay or Farmer can step into the RCB position (at worst we know our backstop is what Shead did last year which was not horrible) and Burley or Smith can roll in the slot.

    Anecdotally, clearly a pass catching back is really a priority here (preferably with a guy who has some explosion as opposed to FJack). I actually saw a few drills from last year’s combine of Rawls yesterday on NFLN and its clear that he is not a 3 down back. Of all the RBs doing the corner route drill it was pretty obvious that Rawls was one of the least smooth route-runners and he was one of the only ones to drop the ball. Combine that with the few times that he dropped screen passes last year with wide open space in front of him and its clear –as great of a runner as he is – that he shouldn’t be relied to catch the ball out of the backfield frequently.

    TE Wilson and Helfet are your move TE’s with Adams and Cottom as your inline blockers. From what I’ve seen, it seems that Wilson doesn’t seem extremely comfortable passing to the TE frequently (compared to say the Browns offense) unless it’s a play action boot. I do believe that there was a lot of pressure early in the season where he felt like he needed to force the ball to Graham (Cincy interception) with mixed results, but notice as soon as Graham went down he passed very little to the TE. In general it feels that he doesn’t love to throw the ball over the middle and is more comfortable with say a wheel switch route down the sideline to Lockett or Baldwin. Having a solid blocking TE (which not having hurt us last year) seems to be of more value here.

    The one position group here that may seem to be neglected is DE (edge rusher) and here is my reasoning. Unlikely that a true difference maker (Spence) falls to us and IMHO it wasn’t the edge rush which was really an issue last year. Add in more snaps for Clark this year, who could actually be a difference maker (I think they brought him along slowly last year on purpose due to depth at the position) and you’ve got Clark, Hill (Hargraves), Bennett, Avril in the Nascar. If you think adding a veteran rotational guy is worth it, then maybe you don’t re-sign Mebane (use Hill as 1-tech or move Rubin to 1-tech) and sign a rotational veteran FA edge guy like Chris Long.

    • C-Dog says:

      Generally, I like the scenario a lot.

      I think it might be hard to afford Osmele and Okung, and keep Rubin and Mebane. I love the Okung/Osmele scenario, but acknowledge the idea is probably pretty unlikely. I think more realistically, they will add veteran help, but it will be with a patient FA game, waiting for the market to settle down. Jeff Allen, Steven Wisnewski, Brandon Brooks are kind of the players I think they may target, if they don’t initially sign contracts. Schneider pretty much said yesterday that great lines don’t necessarily comprise of the most talented players, but gritty and smart players that play with cohesion. I parse those words to mean they won’t break the bank in free agency for top level veteran talent, but more likely see what smart experienced second level talent comes their way.

      I love the idea of adding Martin. If they can address enough of the OL through FA, Braxton is a luxury pick I would dig for the Hawks. Deon Jones and Prosise fill the needs at LB and RB. I can see the potential of either or both those needs being selected earlier.

      Hargraves I personally really like a lot, but his arms measured up short at the Shrine game, and the Seahawks under Carroll have never selected a DL with arms under 32 inches. Because of that, I think they will probably target other prospects. Washington, Henry, Tapper, Latham, Blair look like likely targets. My personal favorite is Austin Johnson.

    • cha says:

      “Kelechi Osmele LG ($11m cap hit)”

      Are you loading the first year cap hit? Or assuming he gets such a monster deal that’s the first year hit?

      Iupati’s deal last year was 5yr $40m with a first year hit of $6.7m for reference.

      I don’t think the market has doubled since last year so you must be thinking the Hawks load the first year scale it down from there?

      • David says:

        Yes, assuming they backload Graham’s contract from this year to next it allows them the flexibility to do this as well as think about an extension for Baldwin this year or next.

        • cha says:

          OK. PC has been vocal about keeping Graham though and JS reinforced that yesterday in his press conf so unlikely we could afford Graham and Osmele.

          I do like the draft picks though – I’d be thrilled to enter round 3 with Martin & Miller secured.

    • Attyla the Hawk says:

      I don’t see the value of spending big on the OL interior. This draft class has too much talent in day 2 to warrant that.

      Sweezy is an interesting case for me. Seattle wants tough guys and Sweezy is one of the top in that regard. If he signs in the 4-5m range like Carpenter, I’m not sure that’s not a wise resign for us.

      But we clearly pre drafted his successor with Glowinski. So there is flexibility for Seattle in that regard.

      We want cohesion. And Sweezy was an important part of that both with Britt in his first year, and Gilliam in his first year.

      There are too many day 1 starter grade OG/C prospects that should be plentiful even at the tail end of R3 to warrant spending that cap value on just one guy.

      • C-Dog says:

        I started looking at it this way: if the re-sign Okung, they liked draft LG high. If the don’t resign Okung, and go with a Gilliam conversion to LT, they likely add a quality veteran LG. In looking at the whole “cohesion” talk, I’m not sure how much they want their left side of the line to consist of a young player who was a converted college TE. and has never played LT as a starter to be paired with a rookie that, while talented, is going to have to figure things a starter himself. I think you ideally want an experienced player next to inexperience.

  31. GeoffU says:

    Just looked at the top three QB’s for the first time, Goff, Lynch, and Wentz. Obviously I’m no expert and haven’t watched much of anything, but other than their prototypical size and arm strength, they all look pitiful to me. They look like a bunch of Brock Osweilers. I can’t imagine any of them starting day one and doing good. Like Brock, it’s going to take awhile and even then it may never pay off. They look like 2-3 rounders to me.

    Probably doesn’t mean much, but that’s my first impression — unimpressed.

  32. CHawk Talker Eric says:

    Will Fuller – 6’0″ 186lbs and 8 1/4″ hands. Whah-whoa 🙁

    • Sea Mode says:

      Tyler Lockett- 5’10” 182lbs and 8 3/8” hands.

      Just sayin’… =) Not suggesting at all they are comparable as far as route running, etc.

      • CHawk Talker Eric says:

        True, but then Lockett didn’t have a history of drops the way Fuller does.

        • matt says:

          Lockett had some drop issues at KSU, not as much as Fuller though. Both are gamebreakers, who can score from anywhere. Not saying we should take Fuller, as it would likely take our first pick, just saying he’s highly talented regardless of some drop concerns.

        • Attyla the Hawk says:

          This is an important point.

          You can be metrically deficient (is that a term? It is now :P) But if it doesn’t translate to in game issues then it’s very likely not an issue at the next level.

  33. CHawk Talker Eric says:

    UCLA TE Thomas Duarte:

    6’2/231 lbs. 33″ arms. 10″ hands.

  34. CHawk Talker Eric says:

    I can’t believe Mayock has Vadal Alexander ranked ahead of Josh Garnett.

  35. C-Dog says:

    Seahawks met with Joshua Garnett. Cool. I like that. Have also spoken with Dahl at the Senior Bowl. Clearly looking at interior linemen.

  36. Todd says:

    Nick Martin might drop a little bit with small hands (9 3/4′”), short arms (32 1/2”), and still dealing with a 2013 knee injury. Being available at end of round 2 is realistic.

    Nice group of C/OG going in rounds 2-3: Martin, Westerman (33 1/2” arms, 11 7/8” hands), Ifedi (36” arms, 10 3/4 hands), Glasgow (33 5/8” arms, 10 3/4” hands) Whitehair (32 3/8” arms, 10 1/8” hands). Round 1 more likely an OT or difference maker on D. If La’Raven Clark or Shon Coleman are available at 26, not sure how you pass them up, even if they keep Okung on a 1-2 year deal. There’s your important OT3/LG and 2017 Seahawks get seasoned Gilliam and Clark/Coleman without throwing them in the fire. Best case scenario!

    If Okung gets paid by someone else, great. There’s another 3-4 round comp pick with money to keep Lane, Mebane, Rubin, Kearse or 1 mid-level free agent. Beginning of 2016 will have OL growing pains, but not as bad as last year when Gilliam, Nowak, and Britt were all learning new positions/making 1st NFL starts.

    Even if Britt and Glo start at G with a R2 rookie C, improvement over Sept 2015. Britt or Glo start at G, R2 rookie G, and Lewis at C; improvement over Sept 2015.

    Take the R1 OT and consider yourself lucky. Great options in round 2-3 for OG/C. If needs be they’ve got extra picks to move up 10 spots in R2 to get the 2016 OG/C starter they really want.

    At least depth at OG/C will be excellent; Britt, Glo, Poole, Sokoli, Nowak all have a year experience. Awesome training camp competition!

    • Attyla the Hawk says:

      The interior depth in this class is really really good. There are a lot of guys that look like they’ll be worthy of second contracts as pros.

      If Seattle can come away with 2 interior guys from this class in the first 4 rounds I think we’ll upgrade the OL very nicely.

  37. Todd says:

    Would it surprise anyone if Britt gets the 1st shot at replacing Sweezy? Could be the starter at RG and backup RT. Better to keep him on one side if they like their lineman learning 2 positions.

    • matt says:

      Yes it would surprise me if Britt got a look at RG. He doesn’t have the movement skills of what we look for at the position. Ideally Britt is our 6th or 7th OLineman, backing up LG and RT. Glowinski will likely have some rookie competition, but I see RG as his job to lose.

    • Sam Jaffe says:

      This makes the most sense. Britt’s problem as a RT was his backpedal was glacial. But a guard doesn’t need a backpedal. A RG in the Seahawks scheme needs to be quick in space and have excellent functional strength. Britt has both of those. He’s also shown plenty of times that he has the power that’s needed once he’s locked on to a defender. He could be the best RG the Seahawks have ever had (assuming he learns his cues and priorities–something he still hasn’t mastered at LG and was horrible at RT).

      • matt says:

        One of the biggest issues with Britt is his lack of quickness. That’s a big reason why he was moved inside to LG from RT, he lacked the lateral agility to mirror pass rushers. This was an issue at LG as well, getting easily beat with a quick inside move.

        • lil'stink says:

          Britt’s balance seems to be very subpar as well. He always gets caught leaning and seems to end up on the ground quite a bit. The joke about the game Britt had against Jadaveon Clowney in college being the only tape the team watched of him almost makes you wonder. Almost.

          • C-Dog says:

            I think there’s a strong chance Britt is going to be in a fight for a roster spot. Carroll’s well known for talking up his players. I thought what he said on Britt was kind of damning at the end of the season. “He’s played guard and tackle for us, so that helps him.” Not exactly a ringing endorsement.

            • AlaskaHawk says:

              I see no place for Britt, he has whiffed on numerous blocks. I don’t even know why they kept him as a starter last year. Glowinski could have stepped in and done a better job.

              I guess it is on par with the other puzzling move of starting Nowak at center. Just a lot of bad coaching choices last year. Hopefully they will draft some starters and get them going.

  38. Soggyblogger says:

    Great basic information. Trying to reason out who the Hawks will take is almost as fruitless as trying to reason out Lotto numbers, but still I am trying and I keep coming up with pass rushing as who will interest the Hawks for round one if there guy is still on the board. I’m saving this post and will continue to try to reason this out.

  39. CHawk Talker Eric says:

    @RobRang: Echoing what John Schneider said yesterday, Pete Carroll indicates that the Seahawks will bring in competition at RB for Thomas Rawls.

  40. Volume12 says:

    Tulsa WR Keyarris Garrett.

    6’3, 220 lbs., 34″ inch arms. WOW!

    • Trevor says:

      I think he is going to have a great 40 too. He is going to be a huge riser this week.

      • Volume12 says:

        Possibly. He’s a bit stiff and not much of a YAC guy, but he’s much better than a lot of the big receivers in this class.

        And that game against Memphis when he had like 12-13 catches, over 220 yds receiving, and 4-5 TDs, Seattle souts were in attendance.

  41. CHawk Talker Eric says:

    I think Wentz will be the 1st or 2nd player taken this year.

    @PSchrags: Carson Wentz is the total package. 6’5. 237. 10 inch hands. 4.0 GPA. Converting doubters. Many NFL evaluators blown away by him this week.

    @rams_fanly: Carson Wentz shines in combine interview #RamsNation https://t.co/8GXGeC4c80

    @ScottPetrak: North Dakota State QB Carson Wentz was also impressive at podium. Comfortable, in control. And a big dude.

    @JamesPalmerTV: Carson Wentz is handling these questions brilliantly. Very impressive. Charismatic, smart, polite, thoughtful. Sounds and looks the part.

    @IgglesCoverage: Carson Wentz says Tony Romo inspires him.

    @TonyGrossi: Carson Wentz: I believe in myself to be a franchise quarterback. I think of being a winner.

  42. Volume12 says:

    Seattle isn’t going to become a passing team or stop looking for run blockers first and foremost.

    It’s why Stanford’s Josh Garnett is so enticing. This kid is tough, grittty, physical, reliable, team captain, highly intelligent, great length, and wants to be dominate and set a tone.

    PC says about RW: I don’t agree that we opened up more. We just did better.’ They’re still gonna run the ball more than passing it.

    • Trevor says:

      The more I watch Garnett and listen to him talk he make a ton of sense in Rd #2 as our new LG. If he has the same success as our other two Stanford grads (Sherm and Baldwin) then he will be a great 2nd rounder.

      he just seems like a smart, confident, tough player the Hawks would love.

      • matt says:

        Garnett would be an instant upgrade over Britt at LG. He looked pretty darn good during the Senior bowl week.

      • C-Dog says:

        Actually, I wouldn’t be shocked at all if he is the R1 pick, especially if Whitehair, Martins, Rankins, etc.. isn’t there.

    • Ukhawk says:

      Do like him also as he played in a power run game, pro style offense

      • Volume12 says:

        Not a great pass protector, and he needs to unlock his hips, but IMO, he’s the best run blocking guard in this class.

        Let’s also not forget what RB/OW Christian McCaffrey did running behind him.

  43. Volume12 says:

    34 reps for Christian Westerman.

  44. CHawk Talker Eric says:

    @nfldraftscout: 16 reps of 225lbs for Cody Whitehair. Shorter armed player (32 3/8) plays very strong on film. Probably a center for most teams.

  45. Volume12 says:

    Christian Westerman 34 reps
    Connor McGovern 33 reps
    Stephane Nembot 32 reps
    Jason Spriggs 31 reps
    Josh Garnett 30 reps
    Landon Turner 30 reps
    Joe Thuney 28 reps
    Joe Dahl 28 reps
    Ryan Kelly 26 reps
    Jack Conklin 25 reps
    Shon Coleman 22 reps
    Taylor Decker 20 reps
    Le’Raven Clark 18 reps
    Cody Whitehair 16 reps

    • C-Dog says:

      That might drop Whitehair well out of R1. Candidate as a center in R2? Nice reps for Dahl, I wonder if that makes his stock climb. Kind of think Westerman is going to sore up the boards.

  46. JimQ says:

    Stephane Nembot would seem to be a “developmental” OT. To my eye he is comparable at least physically to La’Raven Clark. However, I think Nembot might be a better value for that type of player RD-6/7 vs: RD-1/2/3. Big difference.