Talking points: Who are the Seahawks looking at?

January 17th, 2017 | Written by Rob Staton

— The more you watch of Budda Baker, the more impressive he is. He can be another Tyrann Mathieu at the next level. His ability to play in space, read/react and fly to the ball could push him into the top-20. With teams increasingly playing in nickel, you can leave him on the field in any situation. He’s a roaming hybrid. If you want him to cover the slot, attack the LOS or blitz he can do it all. He’s a terrific hitter for his size.

— Baker also plays like a Seahawk, with great intensity and athleticism. I suspect he could be on Seattle’s radar as a high priority. He impacts games. When you watch Elijah Qualls, Kevin King, Sidney Jones — he flashes every time, even when you’re not focusing on him. It is a really deep cornerback class — but Baker might be the most impactful player the Seahawks could draft if he’s around at #26.

— Kevin King is really underrated. I spent even more time watching him last night and he’s not just an explosive athlete with great height and length. His cover skills are very good. For a player who has openly admitted he’s probably a 4.5 runner in the forty — he rarely gets beaten over the top. He sticks like glue and does a very good job playing the ball. There is a very good chance he could go in the top-40.

— A lot of the buzz has Marshon Lattimore as the top cornerback in the draft. Alabama’s Marlon Humphrey arguably has the most upside. Sidney Jones could be better than both. Having watched all of the highest ranked cornerbacks in this draft, nobody is avoided as much as Jones. Teams barely targeted him — and when they did, they were punished (see: Cal game). The Washington defense was absolutely loaded in 2016.

— I’ve liked Cam Sutton for a long time, putting him in the top-15 a year ago before he decided to return to Tennessee. His character, personality, leadership and talent are of a high level. He has an opportunity to be taken a lot higher than people are currently projecting. Whether he’s a fit for the Seahawks will likely depend on length. They haven’t targeted cornerbacks with sub-32-inch arms and Sutton is only 5-10 or 5-11. There’s just something about him that suggests he’s going to be a really good player at the next level. His interviews are among the best in this draft class. He’s a really likeable player on and off the field.

— Tre’Davious White is another player I’ve liked for a long time. It was interesting to see Daniel Jeremiah rank him as the #17 player in his top-50 today. White has every chance to go in the first round.

— I still think Shalom Luani is a player the Seahawks will really appreciate. His combine will definitely be one to monitor. He’s a physical, athletic safety. Luani’s also really versatile. Depth across the secondary is going to be an area for improvement. His ability to play multiple roles could be attractive — plus he has the gritty backstory we know this team loves.

— West Virginia senior cornerback Rasul Douglas had eight interceptions in 2016. He’s lean and tall (6-2) with good size (203lbs). Let’s see how he measures at the combine. If the Seahawks are looking for instinctive players that force turnovers, Douglas could be an option. I watched a couple of his games today and he’s fun to watch. Against Iowa State he chased the ball carrier down the sideline and punched the ball out for a fumble. He makes things happen. Douglas is a former four-star recruit and could easily be on Seattle’s radar.

— Colorado’s Akhello Witherspoon needs to work on his tackling but he has the kind of frame (6-3, 190lbs) this team likes. He did a really good job in coverage against Washington’s John Ross. Witherspoon also had 22 passes defended in 2016 — second most among cornerbacks. If you want a day three option or a possible riser over the next few weeks, keep an eye on this guy.

— Oregon State’s Treston Decoud measured in 6-2 and 203lbs at the Shrine game. Importantly he also had 33-inch arms. He’s the cousin of Thomas Decoud. Watch out for him if he goes to the combine.

— Could Jabrill Peppers be an option for Seattle? There’s an increasing amount of media talk that he isn’t going to go as early as many people originally believed. Daniel Jeremiah listed him at #33 on his big board: “Overall, Peppers is a better athlete than football player right now, but he has tremendous upside as a strong safety.”

— It was interesting to hear Pete Carroll reference the linebacker position as an area for need. They might be looking for someone who can play next to Bobby Wagner and K.J. Wright, not just ‘compete with them’ as Carroll suggested (because let’s be honest, nobody’s beating them out of the lineup). Would they consider Vanderbilt’s Zach Cunningham if he lasts to #26? Which linebackers will show the kind of athleticism and intensity they like at the combine? Are they looking for a Bruce Irvin clone — and if so, does that put Temple’s Haason Reddick firmly on the radar?

— Garett Bolles might be the only viable offensive tackle option in round one. It’s going to be hard to judge Ryan Ramcyzk if he doesn’t take part in any pre-draft workouts as he recovers from surgery. Bolles has the talent to go in the top-20. If he lasts to #26 — it might be difficult to pass on him even with the needs in the secondary. There will be tackle options in the middle rounds too. It’ll be interesting to see how several prospects fair over the next few weeks, including Antonio Garcia, Roderick Johnson, Chad Wheeler, Adam Bisnowaty, Dion Dawkins, Julien Davenport, David Sharpe, Forrest Lamp and Dan Feeney.

Daniel Jeremiah listed Alvin Kamara (RB, Tennessee) at #26 in his top-50 today. Kamara is a really good player — someone we talked about a lot during the season especially after his terrific performance against Texas A&M. It’s unlikely the Seahawks will consider a running back in round one — but Kamara could easily find a home in the top-40. He’s a former five-star prospect who was with Alabama before going through the JUCO’s and then the Vols.

— It’s important to remember free agency is a game of opportunities, at least for the Seahawks. Under Pete Carroll, they’ve never had a splurge like the Giants a year ago. They’re unlikely to offer mega money in the first wave. What they have done in the past is seek opportunities and let free agency come to them. Michael Bennett and Cliff Avril in 2013 are a good example of that.

When Carroll stated they weren’t going to spend big on one guy ‘to save the day’ — I suspect this is really what he’s talking about. It doesn’t mean the Seahawks won’t sign a veteran offensive tackle or an interior pass rusher. It just means they’ll see if there’s an opportunity where value meets need. Spending millions on an average player isn’t a good idea. Bringing in the right player at the right price is the key. They should have an opportunity to do that.

PFF today ranked the Seahawks’ front seven as the best in the NFL. Considering the performance of Seattle’s linebackers and the three key pass rushers (Bennett, Avril, Clark) it’s easy to see how they came to this conclusion. This is more evidence that Seattle’s problems on defense are located within the secondary (even if a disruptive interior pass rusher would be useful).

258 Responses to “Talking points: Who are the Seahawks looking at?”

  1. Schuemansky says:

    Looking at the draft it seems that most of us found common ground hoping for CB (maybe even 2), S, OT and LB. And maybe we even got a pro-bowl pass rusher out of FA.
    Our SB windows should be open for at least 2 to 3 more years with our veteran core players.
    Players on our positions of need drafted at 26 and beyond are not guaranteed starters from day 1. Some of them may need a year to get to starter level. Keeping all this in mind let’s draft:
    Say we are lucky and get Bolles or Cunningham in R1. Before our next pick at 58 a lot of out top choices at C B or S will be gone.
    So what about trading our 2018 first round pick for a pick at around 36 (is that realistic?) to get Maybe Baker or A. Jackson and then still having our three picks on day 2.
    Effectively we would get a first round talent a year earlier so we don’ trade away our future IMO.
    What are you thinking? Does it make any sense?

    • Donald says:

      I agree 100%. I was thinking it would be great if the Hawks somehow traded up their 2nd rd pick to the high 30’s. They don’t have that many needs, and this is the draft where they can focus on QUALITY rather than QUANTITY. I am in favor of trading either

      1) 2018 first and 2017 2nd for # 36 pick.
      or 2) a 2017 3rd and 2nd for the #36 pick, and keeping the other 3rd rd pick.

  2. unitas77 says:

    Rob doesn’t Wade Phillips run a 3-4 scheme? Being with the Rams now how does this effect Aaron Donald and some of there other d-line/front seven talent?

    • Rob Staton says:

      It shouldn’t have too much impact. They’ll be able to adjust. Donald will succeed in any scheme.

    • Jeff M. says:

      He’s traditionally run an attacking 1-gap 3-4 (it ends up really not being that different from a 4-3 under) and has successfully used undersized penetrating DTs before (rather than requiring a big spacing-eating 2-gap NT). He’s also adapted his system to get the most of out whatever unique front-7 players he has (from Bruce Smith to JJ Watt) and been successful pretty much everywhere he’s gone. The talent on that squad plus Wade’s coaching is going to be a nightmare for us, even more than they’ve already been.

  3. All I see is 12s says:

    Rob, are you saying that baker could be a slot guy?It would be amazing to get more explosive there.

    • Rob Staton says:

      He can play some slot for sure, but he wouldn’t be a pure slot corner. He’d be a hybrid. Play him in space. Do a bit of everything. He’s a playmaker.

      • All I see is 12s says:

        I watched a lot of US football this year. He was all over the place in the most timely situations. Sounds like he would be exactly what this defense needs.

        • All I see is 12s says:

          Should have said uw, not US…

          • cyrus says:

            seahawks 6 round mock draft

            1st Budda Baker DB
            the seahawks add a versitile play maker to the backfield how can cover well, blizt well, and tackles in space.

            2nd Adam Bisnowaty OT
            get the competion at LT going.

            3rd Samanje Perine RB or Joe Mixon
            both good choices for the seahawks

            3rd Anthony Walker Jr. LB
            big time playmaker always around the ball forcing and recoving fumbles could start imeaditly for the seahawks at SAM

            6th Brendan Langley CB/KR/PR
            Has the size and length the seahawks like, is very athletic, and has great character. Also can add to the return game taking pressure off of tyler lockett
            https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NmU2b5b0en0 in this interview to me he sounds like a seahawk already

            • Naks says:

              Sounds great

            • Attyla the Hawk says:

              Love Walker Jr. Underrated play maker at LB

              Bisnowaty kind of reminds me of Sambrailo when he came out. Not a difference maker. I don’t see us taking him there. It may be that he doesn’t last to our late 3rd round picks, but Seattle tends to still look for special talent in R1/R2. Bisnowaty isn’t that.

              Baker/Hooker have dominated my draft day fantasies for some time. Even before Thomas’ injury. Those two can play a hybrid role for us and are both strong playmakers. Hooker has outstanding ball skills — maybe the best since Berry/Thomas in ’10.

              I can’t know what the Seahawks are thinking at RB. It is hard for me to think that we’ll go RB before day 3, a year after spending 3 draft picks at the position — including a day 2 pick. If they are targeting Mixon, I have to wonder if they aren’t going to be willing to roll the dice and see if he’s there on day 3.

  4. Totem_Hawk says:

    I would take Budda Baker at 26 ALL DAY LONG!

    • Totem_Hawk says:

      It’s the perfect pick. The team I figured would take Budda in round 1 was Atlanta. He and Keanu Neal would be Earl and Kam 2.0. I would venture to guess if Budda is there when Atlanta picks in round 1they would choose him.

  5. rowdy says:

    Nice rob. After the loss I said baker would be my pick but you seemed hesitate if he could be more then a backup to earl. You mentioned him as having a role in a nickel package witch is just how I viewed him. To me he will have a lot more valuable then a nickel player as insurance to earl and I’d even say he would be are best backup to kam as well, not to mention he could play corner in a pinch not just the slot. You throw in all pro potential and it’s an easy pick for me.

  6. bobbyk says:

    Rob,

    You put Budda Baker in the slot and all over, too? An impact player in the first round who is on the field a majority of the time? And Earl Thomas injury insurance?

    Sign me up!

    • Matt says:

      You stole my thoughts!

    • Volume12 says:

      They were also interested in Tyrann Mathieu. He had meetings with 3 teams. Arizona, Houston, and Seattle. Never showed up for the ones with Houston and Seattle. So there is some precedent that they’d be interested in that type of defender.

      And even though they’ve never drafted a CB with less than 32″ arms, it seems as if they threshold or requirement for slot corners is a little different by an inch or so.

    • DLep says:

      Really excited to see how Luani tests. Wouldnt Baker and Luani basically be Earl and Kam 2.0? One is the speed and versatility and deep coverage ability, the other the tone setting, hard hitting playmaker. Shoot, Baker might even be a better tackler than Earl (though the way Earl covers the back end is basically unmatched).

    • Rob Staton says:

      Put Budda in space and let him make plays. Incredible ability to cover, blitz, hit hard for his size, read/react. Great prospect.

      • Bayahawk says:

        Dammit! Budda Baker intercepted my pants after I read this post.

      • Kenny Sloth says:

        He reads as pure FS for me. Not sure he’s physical\big enough for an in the box role.

      • bobbyk says:

        Atlanta did a great job blitzing a few times with DBs against us Saturday. Cowboys against the Packers, too. Would be awesome to have a slot guy who could explode into the backfield on an occasional blitz. We are pretty vanilla in what we do and this would definitely be an exciting feature to add.

        • Rob Staton says:

          Budda is a superb blitzer too

          • LeoSharp says:

            They tried experimenting with some blitz packages involving Lane and McCray earlier in the year but kinda went away from that later, maybe because of all the other injuries in the secondary. They likely want to have that as part of the defense going forward.

            • bobbyk says:

              If they can get the right guy, Yes! This seems like the right fit. Makes a ton of sense.

              Zero INTs in the last 6 games? Are you kidding me? Yes, please, on a playmaking DB. You’re only as good as your weakest link… which means a defensive backfield of Kam, ET, and Sherm isn’t exactly as good as we think it is (or used to be). This pick changes that.

              • hawkdawg says:

                Dawg fan here, who has probably attended every game Budda played at home in his UDub career.

                Great player. Really came into his own this past year. Absolutely vicious competitor. Backs down from nobody. Not sure how well he’d hold up injury-wise if you put him the box in the NFL a lot, but I am sure he would give everything he’s got when on the field.

                Fast, quick, with diagnostic skills that blossomed this year. Doesn’t have great hands, but neither does Earl. Superb athlete. Very physical. Not sure he has the hips to be a full-time cover man, but he might, and he could certainly cover as needed.

                My only real concern is how to get him on the field if Earl comes back healthy and loaded for bear for the next few years. You don’t want Budda on the bench…

              • Del tre says:

                I would be excited to see Budda in round 1 and Rasul Douglas in round 3. It would give us so much flexibility and depth with playmaking ability. I haven’t been this excited for a draft in a long while. With a second round DT or LOLB with pass rush ability thats my dream draft

          • AlaskaHawk says:

            The thing I noticed was that Budda tackles low, and that is a good way to do it!!! He won’t be carried anywhere because of a high tackle. He would be great in our secondary.

      • Phil says:

        I feel that Richard’s defense was not up to Seahawks’ past standards. Lots of reasons including injuries, unseasoned players, guys getting older, etc. But adding Budda as a hybrid guy whose main purpose is to close in on the ball carrier like a heat-seeking missle would add a new, aggressive dimension to the D.

        Two defensive guys have flashed in every game that I seen them play — Solomon Thomas and Budda Baker.

  7. Matt says:

    Great work Rob! Glad to see you coming around on Budda.

    He’s a very, very interesting player. You touched on this, but we really can’t view him as a S or a SCB. He’s really a smaller version of Jabrill Peppers, with better instincts in the passing game. I sincerely believe he can stay on the field for 3 downs. You could really do some creative things with Kam in the box as a 3rd LBer and have Budda roam the LOS as he is fantastic there as well as covering the slot.

    I really think he’d be an exciting pick who can be a big impact right now, while providing insurance to ET, which we have all found out drastically changes the defense when he isn’t out there. He’s not ET, but if he can be 80%, should ET ever get hurt again, I’d say it’s a dynamic draft pick that uniquely gives you an impact performer as well as depth at a critical position.

    • Rob Staton says:

      I’ve always liked Budda Baker — one of my favourite players to watch all year. I just wondered how he would be used outside of FS. I think you’re right in terms of the Peppers comp.

    • Attyla the Hawk says:

      Peppers to me seems like the kind of player who will slip really hard on draft day.

      Question to the masses: If Baker and Peppers are still on the board, is there a preference?

  8. LantermanC says:

    I thought back then when the Honey Badger was in the draft he would be a good gamble, but hesitated as it seemed we were stacked at safety and CB. Looking back that was a mistake. Now with CB and safety both more up in the air, I think you take Budda if available. He can play so many positions and has so many skills, can’t see him not making an impact.

    • Volume12 says:

      They weren’t gonna take him without vetting him. See above as to why they never got the chance too.

      • AlaskaHawk says:

        Didn’t the honey badger skip a year of school? Seems like there were some side issues going on that clouded his draft.

  9. Ukhawk says:

    Baker would be a great pick

    • DC says:

      He’d be a great revitalizing influence on Sherman, Thomas and Kam as well. Baker is a LEADER! He’s a shot in the arm for sure. Gives the team a lot of options and flexibility in personnel groupings.

  10. Volume12 says:

    Rob, we were discussing Udub CB Kevin King and his lack of physicality at times, but he does make a lot of plays in the run game. And as you point out, that athleticism and size screams Seahawks. He gets into the backfield pretty frequently.

    One reason I also think they’ll take an O-lineman on day 2 or 1 other than the obvious reasons, is they might have a hard time attracting a FA to come play on this line. I do think they’ll sign one, but not a big name.

    • Rob Staton says:

      It’s hard to read FA. I think they’ll be very much open to adding in FA on both lines. Just not if players like Ricky Wagner are being offered $10m a year.

      They’re only going to pay top dollar for top players. I’m sure we’ll see some moves. Going to be a very interesting off-season.

      • Volume12 says:

        Agreed. Don’t see them getting a big name unless the money matches. That’s not to say they won’t add a couple, but probably more of the 2nd tier guys.

        I do think they’ll add a DT or D-lineman in FA. They do every year anyways as is.

        • DC says:

          IIRC Pete Carroll earlier in the year identified an interior rusher as a need. That was left out in his post season review of needs. Hmmm…

          Could Forrest Lamp make it as a RT? He seems like one of those guys that will make it work wherever he plays, even without the ideal measurable.

          • Volume12 says:

            He’s a 1st rounder. I’d almost guarantee it. He’ll get the Zack Martin treatment.

            Could probably play, hold up well and be a good OT. But, move him inside to Guard? All-Pro/pro bowl potential.

            • DC says:

              Could we finally exercise the ghost of Steve Hutchinson? I’d happily add Lamp(one of many options I like) to the mix and let competition sort out the rest of the line. Let Ifedi feel the heat and see if he can claim RG or RT by winning the spot. Wonder if Gilliam gets tendered? At this point I think he does.

            • Cameron says:

              Doesn’t sound like SEA will draft interior OL early based on what they are saying about Ifedi, which is too bad because if he could play RT we could go that route.

            • Trevor says:

              The Alabama players raved about Lamp as the best OL man they played all year.

          • Fountaindale says:

            I’d love to have Lamp but no way he’s available after the Hawks use their first three picks on cornerback, safety, and linebacker.

    • drewjov11 says:

      Hold up… did you say that Kevin King lacked physicality? I’m sorry, but which film were you referring to? One of the things I love about him is how he can set the edge against the run. He looks like Sherman in that regard. Sometimes the coverage asks him to play press bail or zone, but he’s plenty physical.

  11. EranUngar says:

    Rob, I am glad you have warmed up regarding Baker as more than a backup. He is my no. 1 choice but i fear he’ll go the Keano Neal route an be gone in the middle of the first round.

    Of all the things Pete said, one just does not compute. There is no way that after this season and all the apparent possible improvements they could have, they place a high premium on competition for their pro bawl due at LB. It makes zero sense before day 3. For me, it cast a shadow over the rest of Carroll’s statements. Does it sound legit to any of you guys?

    There is a catch with this draft class. It has ridiculous depth of quality on top. I.E. while we’ll celebrate the talent we pick on top, everybody else will be upgrading as well.

    Pete seems OK going into next year with the same 5 guys on OL. I wonder if that would still be the case if we lose our OL whisperer to the 9ers.

    4 picks in the first 2 days of this draft class feels like a treasure chest.

    • Rob Staton says:

      I think they want better depth at LB (which makes sense) and Carroll just threw in the competition remark.

      When Mike Mo was out they were scraping around for options there and KPL/Coyle aren’t the answer. Plus the might want someone who can do what Bruce did.

      • EranUngar says:

        Sure, we could use a great SAM/LEO with pass rushing capabilities. We need to reduce Bennett and Avril to under 70% of the snaps if we want to keep them effective as they enter their 30’s.

        Pete was very specific about the need for young competition for K.J. and Wags. Depth is always good to have and hearing KPL hearts my ears right now. I just feel uncomfortable with his competition remark as one of the needs our head coach outline in his end of the season speech.

    • Volume12 says:

      Sure it makes sense. I do agree that it’ll be surprising if they take one before the end of day 2. I’m kind of eyeing that 3rd round comp as the spot they’ll grab one.

      Teams have been exposing them for 2 years between the hashes in shallow zones. Malcolm Smith was a lowkey, big loss. He was a playmaker that could play all 3 spots and STs.

      They don’t really have the personnel at LB to stay in their base D if teams dictate that.

      And with the loss of ET and others on defense and the huge dropoff in talent, they can’t afford that with KJ or BWagz if they were to go down. LBs and RBs probably have the shortest careers as well.

      • Volume12 says:

        Unless its someone that is more of an EDGE.

        • bobbyk says:

          That’s what I have been thinking 100%. They are going to draft a SAM who they also like as a pass rusher.

          They drafted Irvin to be a pass rusher, not a SAM. He just happened to turn into a SAM most of the time.

          I think they get a football player who they think can do both and if they turn into a great SAM without much pass rush ability and vice versa… if the guy they get turns into a big time pass rusher and not much of a guy at SAM in coverage, then oh well.

          It’s almost like increasing your odds as a gambler. Some teams take a one-trick pony and if they are bad at their trick, they are a bust. With taking a guy who can potentially do a couple of things, if they aren’t what you hoped at one but turns out good at the other… you still win.

        • DLep says:

          Is Takk an option if available? Maybe his skill set is a little redundant to our edge rushers but man he is just so good.

      • C-Dog says:

        I keep hanging onto the words of Carroll that he rehashed earlier in the season on the radio; in his 4-3 under front defense, they SAM and LEO are interchangeable, either player can, in theory, play the other’s position. That’s what he had in USC with Crushing and Mathews. That’s what he had in Seattle with Irvin and Avril/Clemons.

        I believe he mentioned yesterday that they were looking for LB help last season through the draft, but it didn’t work out. I think thats why they were trying Marsh at SAM hoping he could make the transition. Just my opinion, but I think Mike Morgan was their safety net if the plan feel through, and that’s what Morgan was. I don’t see that this defense played great with Morgan filling SAM and Clark rushing at DE, covering both of Irvin’s roles. I thin that want a guy who can do both, and that is critical to this hybrid defense.

        That said, I would be interested to see how they might view Zach Cunningham. He’s not an edge guy like Irvin was, but if they think he can set an edge, play coverage, and the other LB spots if needed, I think he could be that special player they might consider early. Freak athletic with Richard Sherman football smarts playing LB would probably appeal to Pete Carroll.

        • bobbyk says:

          Morgan isn’t exactly good but this defense even with his limited snaps (at SAM) was improved when he played.

          • C-Dog says:

            I don’t think Morgan is a bad player at all. Plus his knowledge and experience in this defense is an asset. It’s not a shock the played better when he was in there. The thing is, dynamic he is not. Playmaker he is not, physical presence he is not.

            Also, I think they got out of their base package possibly more than they wanted to this year because of the limitations at LB beyond KJ and Boddy. When this defense was historic, when Irvin and Smith were on the roster, I’m pretty sure that they were comfortable to stay in their base more.

        • Wall up says:

          C-Ham all day long. He’s the “Answer” alright! Plays all LB fits and can spell KJ & BWag on 3rd dns, reducing their reps, which is what PC was alluding to. Those two never leave the field. Their still young, but it’s beginning to take a toll on them. This would make the best LB tandem in the league.

          If there were a choice between C-Ham & Baker, I’d take the former. Both are great players, but C-Ham is so versatile, strong & football smart to pass on. Rasul playing behind him on the edge, fix the weak link in their D. They may be able to sandwich Garcia between them as their second pick!

          All three address what PC has called for, immediate impact, life to a tiring unit. Ryan Reid, from Baylor, could work the slot at late pick,and another physical player that plays bigger than his size.

          • C-Dog says:

            Cunningham was definitely the first player who came to my mind when I heard Carroll’s press conference.

  12. cyrus says:

    seahawks 6 round mock draft

    1st Budda Baker DB
    the seahawks add a versitile play maker to the backfield how can cover well, blizt well, and tackles in space.

    2nd Adam Bisnowaty OT
    get the competion at LT going.

    3rd Samanje Perine RB or Joe Mixon
    both good choices for the seahawks

    3rd Anthony Walker Jr. LB
    big time playmaker always around the ball forcing and recoving fumbles could start imeaditly for the seahawks at SAM

    6th Brendan Langley CB/KR/PR
    Has the size and length the seahawks like, is very athletic, and has great character. Also can add to the return game taking pressure off of tyler lockett
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NmU2b5b0en0 in this interview to me he sounds like a seahawk already.

  13. Volume12 says:

    I was wondering who Seattle was looking at from Albany St (practice). Its gotta be this guy.

    DT Grover Stewart- 6’4 1/2, 340 lbs., ran a 5.05 40 at that weight, and benched press 315 lbs. 17 times. According to Tony Pauline, he was impressing scouts at the NFLPA game.

    • Josh says:

      Sounds like our new RT πŸ˜‰

      • Volume12 says:

        lol.

        The thing about this draft? There’s gonna be a ton of talent late day 3 and UDFA. And Seattle always hits on 2 UDFAs. As PC/JS refer to it, ’round 8.’

    • Volume12 says:

      VA-Tech OT Jonathan McLaughlin- 6’5, 293 lbs., 34″ arms, 82″ wingspan. Gonna keep an eye on him come combine time. As well as 2 guys from OK St.

      OT Victor Salako- 6’5, N/A, over 34″ arms, 82″ wingspan.

      TE Blake Jarwin- 6’5, 244 lbs., 34″ arms, and over an 82″ wingspan. Wow! Could be an ideal replacement for Luke Willson.

      • Volume12 says:

        All 3 of these guys are impressing at the Shrine game.

        • Trevor says:

          Vol where do you get your Shrine game info? You are a wealth of knowledge my friend. Wish they covered the Shrine practices like Senior Bowl.

          • Volume12 says:

            Thank you. I’m a sponge with an elephant memory. Nothing more, nothing less.

            You can watch it on their Facebook page.

    • Coleslaw says:

      To put that into perspective, I’m 6’2″ 175 and run a 5.3 lol. That’s crazy

      • Volume12 says:

        Right? That’s some freaky stuff right there. And as he continues to train, it’ll probably end up lower than that.

    • Cysco says:

      That’s gotta be a typo V-12

      315lbs 17 times!?

      Is he getting a combine invite? if so, they’ll need to extend the combine by a day cause he’ll bench 225lbs for like 24hrs straight.

      • Volume12 says:

        He put plates on bar that was supposed to be the 225 lb set we see at the combine. Apparently he can get into the high 30’s at 225.

      • Rob Staton says:

        That’s the problem with the bench press though. Reps are more a test of stamina than strength per se.

        My personal trainer uses a quote… ‘Anything over 10 reps is cardio’ πŸ™‚

      • JimQ says:

        I read somewhere that DT-DeAngelo Brown, Louisville, 6-0/310, a likely mid-round pick – reportedly will be the strongest in the draft, 515-BP, 600-squat, 325-clean, 315-lb bench w/21 reps.

    • Wall up says:

      Keep an eye on Tupou, 6025 365 33 5/8 arms. He can plug & press the middle. Reed is more of a 3Tech than a NT. Rubin can play both, as well as 5Tech on run dns.

  14. DC says:

    This is the most exciting and critical offseason that we have had since 2013. We really are close to getting it all together again. Really exciting possibilities in both FA and the draft.

    Rob & the blogites make the NFL offseason more fun than most other sports’ actual seasons.

  15. GeoffU says:

    Good point about the d-line not being the problem. How awesome would it be to add a shutdown corner at #26? Then use Shead and Lane for nickel and dime. This would make the pass rush so much better.

    Also, add an interior D-lineman via FA. Campbell/Poe/whomever. FA seems ripe for this and we have money to spend.

    OL/LB depth can be addressed in the rest of the draft.

  16. Coleslaw says:

    This draft is going to be nuts.. All the possibilities have me thinking we’re going to be checking ourselves right up until the pick happens. I’m probably going to post a lot of these early round mocks, cause I just keep thinking of more combinations that would be awesome for this team.
    1. Baker
    2. Forrest Lamp (probably going to rise but I didn’t want to just put Bisnowaty again lol)
    3. Jarrad Davis
    3. Joe Mixon or Samaje Perine
    FA- Campbell (I think he already knows he’s playing in Seattle next year)

    • Coleslaw says:

      If our front 7 is already the best in the NFL why not hit the 2 weak spots in FA and draft and make it a force to be reckoned with while adding to the secondary and running game

    • DC says:

      “FA- Campbell (I think he already knows he’s playing in Seattle next year)”

      Totally agree. Landing CC sets the whole table for this draft. Adding CC, Budda & a LB to this defense? If you’re not scared, you will be… You WILL be…

      • Rob Staton says:

        If they can get Calais, Budda, Haason Reddick and some outside corner help (plus depth at safety) — watch out.

        • Trevor says:

          That would be awesome!

        • All I see is 12s says:

          In regards to this, is anyone familiar with Byron Maxwell’s contract situation? If memory serves, his 1st 2 years were the ones with the guarantees. I am wondering if he is a candidate to get cut based on his play and injuries. Wouldn’t that be the perfect solution to bring him back?

          • C-Dog says:

            John Clayton brought him up as one to watch if the Phins decide to part ways with him. Makes a lot of sense.

            • DLep says:

              That would seem to be a great fit. And would lessen the pressure to find a CB2 in the draft with Shead injured. Then you could take a guy like Baker in the first for your hybrid w out fear of leaving a hole at CB2. Earl, Kam, Baker, Maxie, Sherm = scary.

              • All I see is 12s says:

                Exactly.plus, bmax can be had at a reasonable price, as his skills don’t translate as well outside our system….and yes! Absolutely throw baker in there too.

                • Hawk Eye says:

                  Maxwell had a decent year in Miami
                  doubt they cut him
                  and if they do, someone else will outbid for him.
                  hawks need cheap youth on D
                  or cheap vets for back up d line

        • Subterranean says:

          I’m a big fan of this approach – don’t ignore need but play to the strengths of the draft and revitalize the side of the ball that makes the money

      • Coleslaw says:

        Haha Right on, then all we would have to complain about on the defense is depth πŸ˜€ I would be PUMPED to see the LIB booming again

      • bobbyk says:

        If this defense was able to sign CC and get Baker and another good CB in the second round… we may party like 2013.

        I wonder the odds of getting a Washington FS in the first and a Washington CB in the second?

        • Trevor says:

          A combination of Baker and King or Jones would be a dream scenario. LOB Version 2.0

          Imagine Bake and Earl in the same secondary! That would be so much fun to watch.

          • Volume12 says:

            I’m split right now. Kevin King or Budda Baker in round 1?

            • bobbyk says:

              Of what limited stuff I’ve seen (thanks to Rob), I think you go Budda Baker. We saw what happened after ET got hurt. Not good. He’s ET insurance. In addition, he’d be a playmaker on defense even WITH a healthy Earl Thomas.

              When the Seahawks traded Josh Wilson, I was mad. I had read all of the Pete Carroll DB stuff and things like that, but I wasn’t happy because I thought he would make a great nickel back in his system. Sure, he was short and didn’t have long arms, but I wasn’t projecting him as the stereotypical Pete Carroll CB. I was thinking there was a specific need he could provide in the nickel.

              NFL rules have changed. I think Budda Baker is exactly what this team needs in round one (been looking at as much of his stuff as possible tonight).

            • CHawk Talker Eric says:

              King fills a need more than Baker (assuming ET3 returns).

            • C-Dog says:

              I feel that same split. I might go Budda and then see what R2 brings for outside corner.

  17. Coleslaw says:

    Tom Cable just confirmed he’s staying in Seattle via bleacher report

    • bobbyk says:

      Some will be irate, but I think it’s the best thing that could have happened. My goodness, of the 7 active players on game days… FOUR were rookies and two more were first year starters at their positions… That’s unbelievable.

      • Seatown says:

        Does this really make you happy? It’s ten years worth of stats.

        Adjusted sack rate ranking of Tom Cable offensive lines, 2006-2016:

        31
        27
        30
        31
        26
        24
        20
        32
        24
        30
        25

        • C-Dog says:

          Hey, look! The #s weren’t that bad with George Fant starting at LT!

        • CharlieTheUnicorn says:

          Some of the sacks are due to RW holding onto the ball too long, so sacks given up may not tell the whole story. Not saying they were the top of the heap, but they might not be as bad as this data is portraying.

        • Trevor says:

          I have been saying the same thing for years our genius OL guru cannot teach pass protection.

          • Seatown says:

            The problem is the Process. it doesn’t work. Britt, Carpenter and Ifedi were drafted as RTs. Guess what? We still don’t have a RT. Odhiambo was drafted as LT and was beaten out by a basketball player and hot garbage (Sowell). JS/PC and TC need to figure what is going wrong in their evaluation and teaching. They are all accountable.

          • Rob Staton says:

            Let’s see where this O-line is in a year or two. It took GB and Pittsburgh a long time to get good up front. That 2010 Super Bowl was basically the two worst OL’s in the NFL on the same field.

            • C-Dog says:

              Thank you.

            • Trevor says:

              Rob I would love to be optimistic but to do the same thing over and over again and expect a different result is the definition of Insanity.

              I truly hope I am wrong as I do believe Fant and Ifedi have huge upside there has just been no evidence yet that gives me any hope if they continue with the same scheme and player development that our OL will be anything better than a bottom third OL overall and bottom 5 in pass pro.

              • Hawk Eye says:

                i remember the GB game at Seattle a few years ago, the right tackle allowed 4 or 5 sacks in the first half. Now he is considered one of the est right tackles.

                Most of these guys need 2 or 3 years to become competent. TB spent a second round pick on a LT 2 years ago and he is still really bad.

                I am afraid of how bad things can be with the same guys, but the idea of have 5 athletic guys the same age growing together makes sense.
                That said, would love to see a vet G and T brought in who can start, or at least be a good back up

                • AlaskaHawk says:

                  It doesn’t help the Seahawks if a player takes 3 years to become competent and they leave. For a first round pick I expect competence from day one.

                  For people like Fant and Gilliam who never played tackle until the pros, I just wonder how things could be so bad that they would choose a totally inexperienced player over others available. I blame that part on the general manager and PC.

            • Dingbatman says:

              That only works if you re-sign your guys to second contracts. We could theoretically have had an O/L this season of Russell Okung left tackle, James Carpenter left guard, Justin Britt center, JR Sweezey at right guard and Breno Giacomini at right tackle.

              Whether this line would be better than who we have now is certainly debatable. The Seahawks chose to not have continuity. They chose not to have an O/L “grow” together.

              • Rob Staton says:

                They chose not to overpay Okung, Carp and Sweezy (didn’t play a snap in 2016). It was a wise decision IMO because it enabled them to keep players like Wagner and Avril.

                • Trevor says:

                  I agree completely Rob the decision to no overpay those guys was the right one.

                  The problem is that Carp and Okung two first round picks were not developed enough to the point were they justified being considered a core component of the team.

                  That has been my argument all along. OL is the only postion group this coaching staff has not developed a core / 2nd contract player for. That is a direct reflection of both talent evaluation and player development.

                  Really hope they lock up Britt to a team friendly deal this off season and make him the first. He is far from elite but he is solid and a piece you can start to build around at least.

                  • Rob Staton says:

                    You can’t just magically develop players into greatness though.

                    Okung and Carp are pretty good. That’s what they are. Weren’t bad picks — but not worth mega money.

                    C’est la vie.

                • AlaskaHawk says:

                  It would have been a wise decision if they had drafted for the left tackle spot – which was an obvious need last year. Nothing against Fant but he was the rawest of rookies.

                • Dawgma says:

                  Is that a joke? Okung got peanuts with basically zero guaranteed; his contract was so bad it’s literally used as leverage by agents against the idea of self-representation. As far the others? Cap and Sweezy both got completely average deals for league average starters, which is exactly what they are.

                  If those guys got overpaid with the deals they signed, the Seahawks FO utterly failed picking them in the first place (two of those guys who don’t deserve their market rate deals were first rounder!).

                  You can keep slathering the lipstick on this pig, but it won’t change anything. The FO’s handling of the OL has been poor, and the team suffers as a result.

    • Coleslaw says:

      On the subject of coordinators, Budda may be the ideal pick because he’s not just a player, he’s a weapon for Kris Richard, an old DB coach. Especially in the blitzing department, you’d think Richard could draw up a few plays that work to get Budda on a free run at the QB. Also you could have him show blitz and the O line is going to have to account for him, helping the D Line and Linebackers.

    • C-Dog says:

      To the cringe of many on this board, best news of 2017, thus far! GO HAWKS!!

    • Trevor says:

      With the knowlege that Cable is coming back to coach the OL I think we seriously need to consider a QB early as Russ likely has 2-3 years left at best with beating he has taken and will continue to take.

      Joking! At least partially.

      • bobbyk says:

        No joke: I don’t think we can gamble Russ will stay healthy all year again. We absolutely need a legit back-up QB. I don’t know who, but we need someone who can prevent our season from being totally over if Russ gets hurt for more than a month or two.

  18. icb12 says:

    I think Carroll Phillips OLB/DE for Illinois is a guy to keep an eye on.

  19. Trevor says:

    Another awesome write-up Rob!

    Really the hawks could just focus in their own back yard with Wash and Wash St. on day #1 and 2 in the draft and really improve the defense.

    How can you not love Buddah Baker! The thought of him and Earl like human missles on the back end with Kam brining the Thunder would be so much fun to watch. I would love that pick at 26!

    If we came out of the draft with any two of (King, Jones, Baker, Qualls, Mathis, Lunai) I think it would be a huge upgrade to the talent level on the Hawks defense.

  20. Bhamdawgfan says:

    Huge Budda fan, but 1 thing really concerns me. His lack of turnovers. He’s always around the ball and is an excellent tackler, but just doesn’t come away with the ball nearly enough. Maybe the Hawks can help him with that, but right now, it’s an issue to me.

    • Drew says:

      How man interceptions have we watched Earl Thomas drop? A lot. It’s more than just making interceptions. Causing fumbles. Solid tackling. Pass break ups. Its the same as the DL, its not just about sacks.

      What impressed me the most about Budda Baker, is how fast he diagnoses a play, his ability to avoid or get off blocks, and how great he is at tackling. To me he would replace Jeremy Lane and have the ability to do so much more.

  21. Trevor says:

    Rob one of my favourite Edge rushers this draft class is Joe Mathis. He does not seem to get much hype nationally. Have you had a chance to take a look at him? What are your thoughts about his fit for Sea? I know it is hard till you see combine #s but just from his tape?

    • DLep says:

      Agree Trevor but I have seen a couple write ups more recently talking up how underrated Mathis is. Just seems like a really good overall football player, the Hawks obviously place a pretty big premium on freaky athleticism so the combine will go a long ways towards revealing whether he might be a fit there. As a UW fan, him pancaking that Stanford right tackle was a signature moment in their season. That was a coming out party for the defense.

    • Rob Staton says:

      I like Mathis, could be some they look at.

    • Attyla the Hawk says:

      If you accept that Seattle adopts a ‘what can he do’ lens to viewing prospects, then Mathis should be on their radar.

      He’s good at pass rush. Good value on rounds 4 through 8.

  22. C-Dog says:

    Rob made this comment above; “If they can get Calais, Budda, Haason Reddick and some outside corner help (plus depth at safety) β€” watch out.”

    26: R1P26
    S BUDDA BAKER
    WASHINGTON

    58: R2P26
    EDGE HAASON REDDICK
    TEMPLE

    90: R3P26
    OT CHAD WHEELER
    SOUTHERN CALIFORNIA

    105: R3P41
    CB AHKELLO WITHERSPOON
    COLORADO

    184: R5P39
    RB ELIJAH HOOD
    NORTH CAROLINA

    211: R6P26
    WR KD CANNON
    BAYLOR

    229: R7P8
    DL STEVIE TU’IKOLOVATU
    SOUTHERN CALIFORNIA

    It’s a pretty exciting proposition if Seattle could grab two dynamic playmaking Swiss army knives on the defense, and find decent value at OT, an outside corner with Seahawky traits, and value at RB later int he draft.

    Personally, I think that if Budda Baker and Zach Cunningham sitting there at 26, it could make for a pretty tense war room, if special unique versatile athletes for the defense is what they want to find.

  23. icb12 says:

    Treston Decoud CB Oregon State Came in with over 33″ arms at shrine game weigh ins.
    6’1″, 203# and a 78″ wingspan

    Also looks like Joe Williams is struggling with the ball security Drills. No surprise there I guess.

    • Volume12 says:

      He’s in the 90th percentile in terms of length.

      One of my favorite corners in this class. Can also play safety. I’d keep an eye on him as a day 3 target.

    • Attyla the Hawk says:

      This class is really loaded in lengthy CBs. Decoud is one of them. Solid player at OSU

  24. Volume12 says:

    Trev, you want the Shrine game measurement link?

  25. C-Dog says:

    Jimmie Gilbert OLB, Colorado measured 6-4, 223lbs. 34 inch arms. First team Pac 12, 3rd in the conference in sacks (9.5), 6 forced fumbles (second most in the schools history), lead the team for TFL 11.5, third down stops, QB hits and QB chase downs. Met with the Bucs, will meet with the Pats. Tony Pauline described him as being “bright, engaging and very articulate.”

    For those that feel Seattle might go after SAM prospects, I think he could be one to watch.

    • Volume12 says:

      There’s some really intriguing day 3, possible day 2 guys.

      FAU DE Trey Hendrickson
      Oregon St CB Treston DeCoud
      Minnesota NB Jaylen Myrick- 5’10 with 32″ arms
      The Arkansas D-line duo: Jeremiah Ledbetter & Deatrich Wise
      All the TEs
      Purdue WR De’Angelo Yancey
      A lot of O-lineman

      • Volume12 says:

        *Wazzu WR Gabe Marks has had 2 really good days. Tiny hands, but they don’t seem to be an issue. Could be a steal in UDFA. Only 5 WRs have ever been drafted with hands the same size or smaller.

      • C-Dog says:

        I like the prospects of DeCoud. I thought the Beavers had a stingy secondary, and his measurables are really encouraging. There could be some 2016 PAC 12 players on this team next year.

        Your boy Wise Jr looks long and lean with 35 inch arms 6-5 275lbs. For those thinking Seattle needs to add another DE/DT type, definitely should keep an eye out for him.

        • Volume12 says:

          Florida DE Bryan Cox, Jr. is killing it too. One of those guys that will be a much better pro than college player. I suspect he’s a great athlete too.

          Youngstown St. (Bo Pelini is now there) has an EDGE, Avery Moss. Another standout.

      • JimQ says:

        DE-Trey Hendrickson, FAU, 6-4/265, From Walterfootball.com – Shrine game practice from Monday 1/16, followed by a lot of positive mention in Tuesdays practice.
        “”Perhaps the most impressive player from either team on Monday was Florida Atlantic defensive end Trey Hendrickson. He dominated the pass-rushing one-on-one session, as no offensive tackle could block him. He got started by showing a nice rip move to get a win to the inside against Florida International’s Dieugot Joseph. He used speed to win against Joseph on another rep before flying by Michigan’s Erik Magnuson with a spin move to the inside.

        During the team 11-on-11 scrimmage, Hendrickson continued to stand out with his ability to get after the quarterback. He had a sack with speed before using more speed and leverage to beat Arkansas right tackle Dan Skipper for a sack. It was an extremely impressive first day for Hendrickson. The 6-foot-4, 265-pounder showed a nice repertoire of moves with functional strength and speed off the edge. If he keeps that up over the next days, he will have made himself some serious money this week by improving his draft stock.”” *** Hendrickson may be a mid-to-late round player of interest for the Seahawks.

        • C-Dog says:

          Sweet! 32.5 inch arms might be cutting it a bit close on the length Seattle likes for their Dliners, though.

          • Volume12 says:

            Wise, Jr. is freaky. Flexibility is incredible. He gives a team so much to work with. Pad level is excellent. His dad was a Seahawk.

  26. CharlieTheUnicorn says:

    I thought the comments about J Lane were very telling by PC. He said he was in the hot spot a lot this year… but made no mention of him being “great”, “tremendous” or the similar PCisms. If you are looking for CBs, focus on the slot CB/S cabable guys. One was mentioned in this article, Baker, but there are many other guys who also fit the bill…… this might be the #1 priority for the team when looking at the defense and personnel groupings. (note: the other was LB depth).

    • Rob Staton says:

      Possibly, but right now they don’t have an obvious option at outside corner due to Shead’s injury. Both positions likely on the table.

    • Trevor says:

      Kind of think they need Lane more than ever with the Shead injury. No matter who they draft or bring in. He knows the system and technique. Hopefully he will bounce back next year and this was just an off year.

      • bobbyk says:

        We will know the Lane situation soon enough… $4 million guaranteed if he’s on the roster beyond the Super Bowl…

        If he’s on the roster after the Falcons beat the Patriots, then we know for a fact he’ll be one of our DBs next year.

        • Hawktalker says:

          Good info. I’ll pocket the $4m myself.

          • AlaskaHawk says:

            Even though I think the Seahawks can do better than Lane, until someone actually wins his spot, it is better to keep Lane around. Even if he is replaced, you can always use an experienced corner for injuries and backup.

            • Cyrus says:

              They won’t cut a starter when they have no depth at cb for a measly 4 million we have tons of cap space. But hon the other hand I think jermain Kearse should go we have players on the practice squad who have more potential than him plus we want more reps for Paul Richardson.

              • Greg Haugsven says:

                Lane isnt going anywhere. His 2017 salary is guaranteed . The cap hit is higher to release him then to keep him, plus Sheads injury makes you thin

        • Attyla the Hawk says:

          That guarantee is for 2017 base salary. Seattle would still incur a 3.75m dead money hit for the remainder of his signing bonus.

          Don’t see us getting rid of him. He’s a guy that knows the system. With Shead being out, we need to retain system guys as much as possible.

  27. Trevor says:

    Love it that Jimmy Graham got comeback player of the year. The fact that he came back from an injury like that and played like he did really is amazing good for him!

    Another off season to get healthy and have the time to build chemistry with Russ and they can take it to a whole other level next season.

    Really hope they extend him so all the move him talk is put to rest.

    • Hawktalker says:

      Would be great to both extend such a great and affordable talent. Clearing a little cap space in the process wouldn’t hurt either as this could be a fun FA acquisition year.

  28. Ground_Hawk says:

    Wake Forest’s LB Marquel Lee is another prospect I’m looking forward to learning more about after the combine. Good production, and he’s listed at 6′ 3″ 240 lbs. Seems to be a day 3 guy, from what I have read, but that could change.

  29. Nathan W. says:

    I watched a lot of UW games in person this year. Budda Baker is just so fast, its ridiculous. I always thought he had a bit of a slight frame, but in a similar way to Earl, he would just fly around the field and make the most ridiculous PBUs and tackles. Being a Washington fan, I’ll be sad to see him leave this team, but would be ecstatic to have a second Earl Thomas roaming the field.

    I don’t have access to a lot of the Seahawks games nowadays, but I saw bits and pieces. From what I could see, the offensive line is not as horrible as we make it out to be. These are uber athletic, strong oliners that just need to work on the mental side of their game. There were times when they just didn’t really know who was blocking who – if Marshawn Lynch had a hard time grasping the ZBS, imagine what its like to be the one doing the blocking. Added competition from other bright, uber athletic linemen and another year in the system should make this team even more dangerous in the run game.. I have serious doubts that the line would ever develop into a top-ranked pass blocking team. Thats just not really the way this line was constructed.

    It makes me a bit more relaxed to hear Pete Carroll admit that this is not the way this team is supposed to play. With that statement, I feel like he is really going to retighten the defense, and search for another playmaker in the run game. Don’t know enough about the draft to make any real predictions, but I could see us ending up with some stud DBs, an OLB who is quick enough to cover and provide some pass rush (Irvin), and search for some some quality athletes to mold for the OL. Can’t forget a heavy back, maybe D. Freeman?

    Maybe a special and intelligent athlete who offers upside in the passing game in the late rounds or UDFA to compete at FB?

    • bobbyk says:

      Love hearing the stories of having watched the games in person. It’s weird how there’s more of a “feel” at games vs. film.

      • Nathan W. says:

        For sure! Another cool thing that was apparent when watching that UW team live was the ferocity and love on that defensive line. Just wow. I think their defensive line coach has created a family.

        • bobbyk says:

          I think that the Seahawks have extreme talent, but it’s the young and hungry teams (with talent) who win (unless you are the Patriots)… That’s why I am so scared of Dallas next year. They are like we were in ’12 after our loss. They are young/hungry. I don’t see the hunger to the same degree with all of our own defensive players who are on mega-deals. Sure, they have “grit” and a 99.9% crazy passion for being #1… but I don’t see the 100% passion that our minimum wage defensive studs did after the Falcons loss in ’12. Adding three impact (potentially) guys in the first three rounds (with our 4 picks) might change this. A guy like Baker might be the difference. And youth/passion that some guys need to rediscover. And if we have 0 INTs in our last 6 games… perhaps it’s more than 1 DB we need to be looking at in the 1st round.

          • Hawk Eye says:

            teams that make a huge leap tend to come back to the pack the next year (or lose to the Pack this year!)
            and Dallas has big cap issues, even if they trade Romo
            Atl looks like it can be good next year, good cap situation, and Car has good players and lots of cap room.
            and Every year, a couple of teams play better than expected and a couple are worse.
            Hope the better than expected is Seattle

            • bobbyk says:

              Although the Cowboys were bad last year, you do realize they were 12-4 only two years ago, right?

              • AlaskaHawk says:

                Wow I didn’t realize that. Probably because they haven’t won a playoff game in decades.

                • Volume12 says:

                  I think they’re gonna try and win it with Romo at QB this year. Would not surprise me at all.

                  • Volume12 says:

                    Every year since 2008 I beleive, 4 teams that made the playoffs the year before don’t. And 4 different teams get in. Usually its 5. Not saying that’s Dallas, but AH has a point. Some of these teams will regress.

                  • Cysco says:

                    It would surprise me big time.

                    I live in Dallas. This city is crazy gaga for Dak. Jerry is probably the most ego driven owner in sports. OK, maybe second to our city’s basketball team owner. He’s incredibly proud of himself for “finding” Dak. Even if it’s the right football move, there’s no way his ego or the fans would let him switch QBs again.

          • Ishmael says:

            Passion is wildly overrated in professional sport.

  30. Nathan W. says:

    Also, ROB! Congrats! I’m not really sure how you’re going to get any sleep with a newborn, a three year old, while following the draft and keeping up with your day job for BBC (?). You have both my well wishes as well as my gratitude for providing such insightful draft and prospect information, as well as presenting your arguments in a palatable and entertaining way.

    Cheers, from Seattle.

  31. Bigten says:

    With the safety talk, any idea about tyvis Powell? We waived him to add Hester but never heard anything about him being picked up by anyone else or signed to the practice squad. I remember this time last year he was viewed as 2nd round talent, blew up the combine but then went undrafted. Any thoughts on if that could happen to any of these safeties or corners? And any thoughts on Powell’s future?

    • Nathan W. says:

      I think most pundits had Powell pegged to go in the fourth round. Still a steal in UDFA. No news has come out about where he went off to, though.

  32. Ishmael says:

    That’s a fantastic highlights clip for Baker. Maybe he can come in and finally teach Earl how to tackle? He’s a very exciting player, and the idea of re-tooling the defence appeals.

    Another safety I like the look of is Nate Gerry. It might just be because he’s a white boy, but he reminds me a bit of Harrison Smith. Fast, physical, aggressive player. Suspended for academic reasons at the end of this season, which I’m not mad keen on. Also got ejected from a game as a junior for a very nasty targeting penalty which is something I personally loathe.

  33. Hawktalker says:

    What a great and exciting piece. Wow.

    Ok, a what if . . .

    Seattle’s 5th pick and you’re looking for a RB?

    Samaje Perine, D’Onta Foreman or Elijah Hood (or another)? Please chime in.

  34. Rad man says:

    would very much like them to go D in the draft, and FA. I’m more and more convinced they path to success is to stick it out with this OL and see what it looks like next year with some experience. I think a big problem has been the shuffling of positions and the rookiness.

    Drafting secondary and Edge, and looking for interior pass rush in free agency makes a lot of sense to me.

  35. Dingbatman says:

    OK Rob. I’m thinking it’s likely the Seahawks do their thing and try to trade down for another 3rd. Have you considered how that might look in a mock?

    • DC says:

      Depends on who or what position group they are targeting. If it’s Baker, you probably make the pick and trade down somewhere else for additional picks. If it’s a DT for instance, there are a lot of options and trading down from #26 makes sense.

    • Wall up says:

      It depends upon who’s available @ 26, finding trading partner. If there are no 1st Rd grades left on their board, and Chicago doesn’t go QB with their first pick? Then , there just might be a chance.

    • Rob Staton says:

      Trading down would make some sense depending on who lasts to #26. Lot’s of good depth at DB and if they can get an extra third, great.

    • Attyla the Hawk says:

      Also depends on when the run on CB talent begins.

      Could be a year similar to 2012 (edge) and 2015 (WR). The depth at those positions really helped push down talent into the 15-70 overall range.

      Seattle may be in a position similar to 2016 (Lynch) and 2015 (Bridgewater). If Watson drops out to the late first, you’re probably looking at Cleveland/SF/Chicago trying to move back into the first.

  36. Volume12 says:

    Oregon St CB Trestan DeCoud has that backstory too. JUCO product, mom had cancer, brother was just released from jail, grew up poor, nephew of former Atlanta Falcon Thomas DeCoud. He’s overcome a lot. Productive too.

  37. 503Hawk says:

    I said it a couple of months ago, I will say it now; Budda Baker is the man. On one hand he and Earl are interchangeable. Two, he is a playmaker (Mathieu clone). Think turnovers. Third, King Earl has now had two significant injuries. This would be a way to ease the heir apparent in.

  38. Donald says:

    Budda Baker is an interesting prospect, but how does he compare to Adoree Jackson?
    http://www.cbssports.com/nfl/draft/players/2139614/adoree-jackson

    With Action Jackson you get an excellent playmaker who also is a PR / KR. This would be good insurance if Lockett gets hurt again. He would play Corner now, and could switch FS if Thomas gets hurt or retires.

  39. GoHawks5151 says:

    Decoud was always seen by many Beaver fans as a Sherman clone. Long, good turn and run skills, comes up and tackles well. Also very handsy and can struggle with smaller quick WRs (sounds familiar?). He had a bad season ending neck injury last year. Since then he has worked hard and blossomed into a great player who still has a lot of potential. Was a legit team leader. Beavs going to miss him. Been through a lot personally before he got to the pac12 as stated. Saw J**** St****r tweeting about him today. I thought he was destined to be a seahawk as a Udfa but they may have to use a later pick to get him.

  40. Donald says:

    Trade 2nd and 3rd rd for #36:

    #26 Zach Cunningham or Takkarist Mckinley

    #36 Adoree Jackson or Budda Baker

  41. Cyrus says:

    Rob when are you gonna star doing podcasts with Kenneth again? We haven’t had a NFL 3000 in a while

  42. bankhawk says:

    I’m still wondering, can the league dock us draft picks for Pete’s non-disclosure of Sherms MCL injury? Do you feel it’s likely that they would? When would they be in effect-2017, or 2018?

  43. Tennessee says:

    Hey everyone , been a lurker for a while so this is my first comment but one thing that continues to perplex me is how this defense could have so much pure talent at almost every position but still get beat so often towards the end of the season. **I know that losing ET was a devastating blow but hear me out.

    This may not be the best of all places to ask this question but I couldn’t help myself once I saw the PFF article that Rob mentioned in this post. That ranking just confirms what I intrinsically believed about this team as the team headed into the playoffs which was that the ‘Hawks front 7 may be one of, it not the strongest in the NFL. We have a tremendous pass rush couples with a tremendous Run D, but the problem as we all saw lied in the secondary. I know losing Earl at FS sucked, but despite his knee injury I believe I saw that PFF even determined Sherman actually graded out as having a very strong second half; even an good-not-great Sherman is a net positive, and all I hear about Shead is that he played strong/tight coverage and did everything asked of him. He may given up some plays now and then but that was inevitable since he was naturally going to get a higher volume of passes to defend than Sherman. And as far as I know Kam was basically his normal self; filling up the running lanes, covering tight ends, patrolling the middle of the field and making big plays.

    So if that is all true, does it really come down to Lane and Terrell as the two culprits that really led to the collapse in the secondary? Lane was mediocre to poor most of the time, and Terrell basically bad, but can two players really have that strong of an impact on a defense? I’ve read other Seahawk bloggers write about the weak link in the chain, or if the one Christmas bulb goes out the whole string dies arguments, but I guess the fan in me has a hard time believing that the defense sustained the collapses it did after ET went down because of just two players (one of whom is only on for the nickle package). I understand the FS position is vital to this team running the Cover-3 scheme, so not to jump to hyperbole but without a HOF FS does the scheme just fall apart? That doesn’t seem right… Other teams who would probably kill to have the defensive personel the Hawks have right now (Lane+Terrell included)seem to have done more with a lot less. I don’t really know what else to blame or how to explain it but Im hoping someone else can enlighten me or share their thoughts on what happened. I can’t be the only one to be thinking this.

    Thanks!

    • Tennessee says:

      Despite Earls Leg Injury* (not knee)

    • Trevor says:

      I think the FS in Pete’s scheme really is that critical. That is why he wants a guy with 4.4 speed at that position. Earl erases a ton of mistakes in that back end and patrols the deep part of the field as well as any FS in the history of the game. On this defense his loss really was that critical as he is the one guy who can’t be replaced.

      • 503Hawk says:

        Some statics that I’ve seen do suggest that losing Earl was significant. (Like we need stats to prove that.) But that being said, even w/ Earl this talented D has given up big leads in the past. I think that is why some of us are wondering if a tweek in scheme is needed.

        • Tennessee says:

          That is true, I guess we could look at the first half of last season when we blew several 4th game leads which led to losses. But it feels weird to consider this team adapting a new defensive scheme, and furthermore would Kris Richard be the ideal candidate to do so? The propriety to blow leads was not really a characteristic of this team from 2012-2014. Yes they had games where they came out flat, gave up 20 or even 30+ points but not to this consistency, and at least those teams were forcing turnovers at an absurd rate. Some regression should have to have been expected, but thinking about it some more based on what you said, the fact that without Earl we didn’t record a single interception seems to suggest teams could just throw to Terrell, or fake routes that pulled our CB’s off their guys to try and assist Terrell in the back leaving their man suddenly open. I’m no football expert so thats just me talking as a fan here so feel free to correct my lingo.

          But I would also be curious if this team begins now exploring other schematics should Earl miss time again next year; whether that’s through some backup formations, or even drafting some players who fit the mold to other schemes just in case? Then again that could just be a waste of resources and time, and only necessary should Earl miss time again.

        • vrtkolman says:

          I think it’s a combo of Earl being that good and Terrell just not looking like an NFL caliber player.

    • Cysco says:

      Besides injuries, probably the biggest problem with the defense this year was the lack of interior pass rush. In previous years, this team has been able to move the QB off his spot by collapsing the pocket from the inside. This year, that pressure was basically nonexistent. unless we blitzed. This defensive scheme has always had issues with quick passes. It’s built to prevent the big play, allow the short yard stuff and hope to stop them on third down with overwhelming pressure from the D-Line. Without that interior rush the QB gets just a little bit more time to survey the field. The receivers have just a little more time to run their routes. You get the idea.

      Another less talked about issue IMO was the weak offensive performance. There have been studies that show that large percentage of interceptions occur in the fourth quarter when a team is trailing. This makes sense because a trailing team needs to take more risks to catch up. How often did Seattle find themselves with a nice lead in a game this season? Basically, if you’re trailing or if the opposing team doesn’t feel the need to take risks, your chances of intercepting a pass go down big time. Additionally, in previous years, the offense has been much better at controlling the clock and limiting opposing offensive possessions. The defense was more rested and less susceptible to the long, exhausting drive.

      This is why so many on here are banging the drum for Calais Campbell (to address interior pass rush) and why it’s so important to get the Seattle offense back into the top-5 in offensive DVOA.

      • vrtkolman says:

        You have a great point regarding the offense not helping the defense at all. A pass heavy team that struggles in the red zone isn’t going to do it’s defense any favors.

      • CHawk Talker Eric says:

        I have a strong feeling that SEA will sign Campbell to (essentially) the same contract they just did with Bennett – 3 years for ~$31.5M.

        Campbell is one of, if not the most Seahawky non-Seahawks out there. His style of play – what he does best – is exactly what this team needs, not to mention his personality. You can already see the locker room chemistry from the few instances of interaction this year.

        If PFF think SEA already have the best front 7 in football, imagine that DL with two players grading out at +90.

        Also, FWIW, I really, really like both Kevin King and Budda Baker, but King fills a more immediate need next year than Baker. SEA don’t have a RCB at the moment. There’s virtually no chance Shead will recover in time to start next year, and it’s possible his rehab will last well into the season. Lane is not qualified to take his place as a starting outside defender, nor is anyone else currently on the roster (what ever happened to SJB?).

        But if SEA think King will last into R3, or of they like another CB (for example, DeCoud) then Baker would be a fantastic addition.

        • Attyla the Hawk says:

          I’m hoping the same thing.

          Campbell has that kind of value. He is among the leaders in the NFL in pressures. Definitely worth an alpha contract.

          If he produces similar to what he’s historically done, then a Bennett contract would be underpaying Campbell. Value doesn’t have to be just cheap. Value can be simply getting more than what you’re paying for.

          If he could produce even close to his baseline production, he’d be worth more than Bennett’s deal straight up. Not only would he be adding his own production, but I would expect something close to a 20% increase in productivity from Avril, Clark and Bennett. Campbell give the ability to force the QB to remain on the spot — not allowing opposing QBs to move up in the pocket to avoid near misses from the three rushers we have.

        • Trevor says:

          Have to admit I am all in on the idea of adding Campbell as well. If they can get him on that kind of deal it should be done ASAP!!!

          I think he is going to have a much bigger asking price though. Too many teams with a huge amount of cap space they have to spend. Plus Pete seemed to be trying to tell everyone in his presser not to expect any big FA acquisitions. Really hope I am wrong.

          JS comes from the Ron Wolf tree at GB and they did not go after many big name FA but I hope he remembers the one time they did Reggie White! He got the Pack over the hump for an SB win.

          I believe Campbell could have a Reggie White like impact on this defense even if it is only for a couple of years.

          • CHawk Talker Eric says:

            I could be wrong, but I took PC’s comment about not bringing in one big FA “savior” to be in reference to the OL.

            I’m not sure Campbell will have a bigger asking price. Spotrac ranks his “market value” at the same level as Bennett’s – about $8.5M/year (with bonuses taking it to around $10.5M/year). I should think Campbell is also interested in maxing out the guaranteed portion of his next contract.

            From Campbell’s perspective, SEA have two things going for them that ARI don’t (as well as a host of other potential landing places):

            1. SEA are in a Super Bowl window (by my definition, you actually have to go to the Super Bowl to be in a window – it’s not enough to have a loaded roster and/or playoff appearances); and

            2. SEA have a Super Bowl caliber QB.

            • Rob Staton says:

              Sadly, the thing working against Seattle is they’re in Arizona’s division. Campbell seems like the kind of guy that having spent a career in Arizona, that might matter to him.

        • Rob Staton says:

          I’ll guarantee now — King won’t last into R3.

    • vrtkolman says:

      The front 7 is very good, but it’s lacking in DT’s. Reed looks good going forward but he was a rookie and struggled at times, not to mention was limited snap wise. McDaniel and Rubin are JAGs. Jefferson hopefully makes an impact going forward, but the team could use an infusion of talent there.

  44. Jason says:

    From my eye if the hawks do not go with a LB with one of the first two picks it will be slim pickings after that. Any ideas on mid/late round players to check out. Also, anyone in free agency worth looking at for an LB spot?

  45. Attyla the Hawk says:

    Alternative option to consider:

    Tim Williams

    Last year, we widely considered him the best pure pass rusher in CFB, with some dissent aimed at Garrett Myles. Someone similar to Irvin in production and outlook.

    This year, he seems to have slipped some in terms of consideration. Although it seems that he was still very productive for Alabama this year.

    If he’s on the board, is he a consideration?

    • Vista says:

      He might be a consideration. However, it has been reported that he has a drug problem similar to Randy Gregory. It is something that needs looking into for sure.

    • Ukhawki says:

      Football wise, I like him a lot. Get off, power, strong hands. Jeremiah compared him to Ansah – if true I’m sold. IMO he plays more like Aldon Smith. I think he could also play SAM as he has the tools and flashed vs run/pass coverage at times. Question is the character stuff so let’s hope he is not Aldon off the field. Some guys think he doesn’t bend well enough but I think he is pretty effective on tape.

    • Rob Staton says:

      He’ll either be a top-12 pick or Randy Gregory.

    • Misfit74 says:

      Tim Williams would be a steal at our pick.

  46. STTBM says:

    Rob, wondering what you think of Seattle signing a guy like Ron Leary of Dallas. He plays LG, and Glowinsky seems like a keeper, but to me he represents that need meets value player for Seattle. He’s not going to command the money Zeitler will (at least, I hope not!), but if you can get him for 4-7 million a year, what a difference that would make!

    They could conceivably move Glow to RG to compete with Ifedi, or move Ifedi to RT and let Glowinsky compete with whoever. Im certainly not sold on Gilliam since it appears the Detroit game had more to do with the Lions sucking than Seattle getting it together. I realize Gilliam played well the last couple games of the season, but he wasnt great vs Atlanta, and while their defense is improving it isnt elite.

    I realize Carrol has said they will keep Ifedi at RG for now, but Im not buying they wont consider moving him to RT to see what he can do before the season starts next year. Anything can happen.

    • Rob Staton says:

      I’m not convinced they’ll sign a FA guard

      • STTBM says:

        Im not either. I am hoping they do, but far from convinced they will. I would imagine they are more interested in a mid-level T to add if the price is right.

        I was just wondering if you thought he would be a good fit, and would help the line, and what you thought of his likely price range.

        • Rob Staton says:

          It’s hard to say — he has a degenerative left knee condition and that scared a lot of teams when he entered the league.

          • STTBM says:

            I had forgotten about the knee problem! Good catch! Read about it last year when I was all grumpy about our line, and of course conveniently forgot about it in my excitement that he’s hitting FA. Sigh…

            Im still hopeful we can get someone solid at G and/or T–someone better than Sowell/Webb but not as expensive as Zeitler/Wagner.

  47. Ukhawk says:

    Interesting take by Walter football, mocking a safety but a different on to Seattle. Makes a ton of sense in terms of profile & versatility:

    Seattle Seahawks #26: Jabrill Peppers, S/LB, Michigan

    Jabrill Peppers may not seem like a logical pick at first glance, but I think it makes a lot of sense, and I have to credit e-mailer Yu N. for the great suggestion. The Seahawks could really use a versatile player like Peppers; they have numerous issues, all of which he could address. Cornerback Deshawn Shead suffered a torn ACL in the loss to the Falcons, and because the Seahawks play a lot of nickel, Peppers could be used in those situations. He could also be the third linebacker in base formations, as Michael Morgan is heading for free agency. Plus, there’s the obvious, which would be the depth he’d provide if either Kam Chancellor or Earl Thomas suffered injuries again. Peppers would help in the return game as well, allowing Tyler Lockett to focus more on offense.

    Pick change; previously Garett Bolles, OT

    Read more at http://walterfootball.com/draft2017_1.php#6JDDd4PECbwExkei.99

    • STTBM says:

      I would be surprised if Peppers wasnt gone long before pick 26.

      • Volume12 says:

        Peppers is not a corner. No way in hell.

        • STTBM says:

          You dont think a guy that athletic will be coveted by teams in the top 20? Since the success of Chancellor and Honey Badger (and to a lesser extent George Iloka) in the NFL, teams are doing the usual copycat thing. Lots of teams want a guy who could possibly play S or LB or even some corner.

          If he’s there at 26 I would be thrilled if Seattle drafted him. They’d find a way to get him onfield making plays. Same with Baker.

          • RealRhino2 says:

            Well, I’ve had my say on Peppers, so sorry if beating a dead horse, but look at that paragraph describing how he would “help” Seattle: “Shead is injured” — okay, but Peppers isn’t a corner like Shead. “Could play SAM in base” — Uh, no. 207 lbs. isn’t going to our base SAM. “Depth for Kam or Earl injury” — Okay, so now #26 is for a guy who probably won’t play but 20 snaps a game?

            He’s a useful tool, but at the end of the day for me he’s a SS who could play an hybrid/LB spot on passing downs. Don’t think that’s what we need. He would help in the return game, though. Still, if we are looking for a punt returner, I’d rather add, say, Tredavious White or Adoree Jackson, who would have a clearer path to playing time.

  48. Condor says:

    Boy that’s funny to read this. I don’t read much draft blog info but just watch game tape and yeah, upon watching Peppers vs Baker, I would take Baker. Peppers is the better athlete, but Baker is simply a playmaker. I would like To see the Hawks replace Jeremy Lane at slot. He was a major liability all year, giving up big plays (think Packers and AZ games), didn’t tackle well and didn’t make big plays (INTs and rumbles). Jeez put a guy like Baker in there who charges to the ball carrier, makes plays in the backfield, is athletic in coverage and is simply instinctive.. It can elevate our whole defense. After all, you’re only as strong as your weakest link. I say we take baker early and put him in that slot role. Let him learn from Earl and Kam and Sherm and he can evolve into the leader of our next generation. Then build our line through free agency and middle rounds and look for an athletic, long “hawk” type of corner. Man I would love to take all the top players from the huskies D in Jones, King, Baler and Qualls lol. Go dawgs go Hawks!

    • Condor says:

      By “its funny to read this” I mean it’s good to see other people thinking like this! I’ve seen Budda projected to go in the second or third. We simply can’t wait that long. He is gonna go soon. But I figured everyone would be pushing for 1sr round oline or Dline. I really hope we shore up the weak points in our secondary.

      • AlaskaHawk says:

        I know there is a lot of talk about needing a better pass rush, and that is true. But I think secondary was the weak link. The secondary didn’t have a single interception in the last 6-7 games. That is just pitiful. Even worse is that when they play the zone defense they never seem to be even close to the receiver who gets the ball. There just has to be better recognition of where the pass is going to, a quicker response, and sure tackling.

        Buddha Baker and an outside cornerback would be good additions.

        • Condor says:

          I couldn’t agree more. Luckily this draft is deep with DBs. If peppers and baker are sitting there at 26, do you think we would take either one? I would prefer baker for his coverage skills..

  49. STTBM says:

    Seattle needs to draft Chancellors replacement soon. You want to do that at least a year ahead of time, and while this draft might be a year or two early, its loaded with defensive talent–though no Kam Chancellors. They dont grow on trees…

    ANd having a guy who can play nickel AND backup Earl would be boss (cough, Baker, Cough…)

    But Seattle really needs a good young corner too. Im thinking Seattle may relax or modify their measurable requirements–6 feet, 32 inch arms, etc–for several reasons:

    1) Less Bump and Run used due to Refs and Goodell negates advantage of huge strong corners and gives it back to shifty tough guys whether they have length or not. NFL is always evolving, teams have to as well…

    2) We need a guy who can play the slot if Lane doesnt round back into form next year. Preferably a guy who can play both slot and outside.

    Doesnt mean they will draft the next Ronald Darby, but I think they are going to adapt a bit, scheme and measuables-wise.

    Then again, Im wrong at least as often as Im right.