The importance of agility tests & four O-liners that fit Seattle

March 27th, 2016 | Written by Rob Staton

Cody Whitehair’s agility makes him a viable option at #26

There’s a tendency to concentrate on forty times, splits, the vertical and broad jumps at the combine. Less time is afforded to the short shuttle and three cone.

In many ways these tests are more important than the forty yard dash. The majority of NFL plays require short-area quickness and the ability to change direction — not straight-line speed.

The short shuttle measures change of direction and agility. The three cone reveals straight line and linear power, change of direction, ‘braking’ and regaining top speed.

Agility testing is even more crucial these days for Seahawks offensive linemen. Russell Wilson’s mobility and ability to improvise demands the ability to react and adjust on the move. They often aren’t blocking straight ahead for a pocket passer like Peyton Manning. It’s probably one of the reasons they generally look for tackle converts to move inside. They’re used to blocking on the run.

We’ve focused a lot on Germain Ifedi because he had a terrific vertical jump of 32.5 inches at 324lbs. His overall size, length (6-6, 36 inch arms) and terrific physique make him an appealing option. Yet it’s worth noting the players who performed better than he did in the agility tests. It could be important.

Ifedi didn’t run a three cone at the combine for some reason but did manage a 4.75 short shuttle — good for 22nd among offensive linemen.

It’s not terrible by any means — and his hulking size and physical comparisons to Kelechi Osemele make him an attractive option at #26. Here are some other offensive linemen, however, that arguably fit better for a team that asks it’s blockers to do a lot of moving around in pass protection:

Cody Whitehair (T, Kansas State)
He had the third best three cone (7.32) and the eighth best short shuttle (4.58). He also had the sixth best split in the forty (1.73). His vertical jump was disappointing (25.5 inches) but in terms of short-area explosion and agility — it’s easy to see why he faired so well as a left tackle at Kansas State.

Joe Haeg (T, North Dakota State)
Haeg’s 7.47 three cone was the fifth best and he impressed in the short shuttle too with the third best time (4.47). Like Whitehair he disappointed in the vertical jump (27.5 inches) but had a good split in the forty (1.75). He’s another player who has the agility and reaction speed that suits Seattle’s O-line.

Connor McGovern (T, Missouri)
With the seventh best three cone (7.50) and 14th best short shuttle (4.65) — McGovern didn’t test as well here as Whitehair and Haeg. However — he had an explosive vertical that topped all offensive linemen (33 inches), had a really good split (1.72) and managed one of the best broad jumps (9-1). His strong, explosive base perhaps lends itself best to center in Seattle’s scheme — but he’s still pretty agile.

Evan Boehm (C, Missouri)
While everyone raved about Ryan Kelly’s athletic performance — he actually ran a slower three cone than both Boehm (7.52) and Nick Martin. We know the Seahawks worked out both McGovern and Boehm and we shouldn’t sleep on either. Mizzou’s center added a 4.69 short shuttle which was quicker than Ronnie Stanley, Christian Westerman and Willie Beavers.

Here are some other interesting numbers to consider:

Jason Spriggs (T, Indiana) ran a 7.70 in the three cone. That’s considerably poorer than the four prospects listed above. It’s strange because Spriggs ran a 4.44 in the short shuttle — the second best time among offensive linemen. There’s such a difference between the two tests it’s hard to determine what it tells us.

Ronnie Stanley (T, Notre Dame) had two horrendous agility tests. He managed a wretched effort of 8.09 in the three cone and an equally bad 4.90 in the short shuttle. For all the hype about Stanley in the top-15 — these are really bad numbers.

It’s also interesting when you consider some of the top performers a year ago. Some of these names were either linked to the Seahawks by Tony Pauline (Ty Sambrailo), were drafted by the team or were considered viable options:

2015 top ten performers in the three cone

1. Jake Fisher — 7.25
2. Ali Marpet — 7.33
3. Cam Erving — 7.48
4. Jarvis Harrison — 7.51
5. Ty Sambrailo — 7.54
6. Mark Glowinski — 7.56
7. Mitch Morse — 7.60
8. Andy Gallik — 7.66
9. T.J. Clemmings — 7.68
10. La’el Collins — 7.70

Four of the top five here were taken before Seattle’s first pick. Jarvis Harrison at #4 lasted until round five and spent 2015 on the Jets practise squad. The Seahawks drafted #6 on the list — Mark Glowinski — and likely had a lot of interest in #7 Mitch Morse.

2015 top ten performers in the short shuttle

1. Jake Fisher — 4.33
2. Ali Marpet — 4.47
3. Mitch Morse — 4.50
4. T.J. Clemmings — 4.54
5. Laurence Gibson — 4.56
6. Andy Gallik — 4.58
6. Mark Glowinski — 4.58
6. Ty Sambrailo — 4.58
9. Rob Crisp — 4.60
10. Jarvis Harrison — 4.62

Again, the top three prospects were off the board before Seattle’s first pick. Fisher, Marpet and Morse could’ve been strongly considered by the Seahawks in round two. Ty Sambrailo at joint 6th was also off the board and he managed the same time as Mark Glowinski.

To compare, here’s the top ten in each drill this year…

2016 top ten performers in the three cone

1. Jake Brendel — 7.31
1. Tyler Johnstone — 7.31
3. Cody Whitehair — 7.32
4. Isaac Seumalo — 7.40
5. Joe Haeg — 7.47
5. Joe Thuney — 7.47
7. Connor McGovern — 7.50
8. Austin Blythe — 7.52
8. Evan Boehm — 7.52
10. Nick Martin — 7.57

2016 top ten performers in the short shuttle

1. Jake Brendel — 4.27
2. Jason Spriggs — 4.44
3. Joe Haeg — 4.47
4. Isaac Seumalo — 4.52
5. Austin Blythe — 4.53
6. Joe Thuney — 4.54
7. Jack Conklin — 4.57
8. Cody Whitehair — 4.58
9. Ryan Kelly — 4.59
9. Cole Toner — 4.59

When you look at the two groups — Cody Whitehair compares very well. His three cone would’ve been #2 to only Jake Fisher a year ago and his short shuttle is exactly the same as Mark Glowinski’s.

Joe Haeg would’ve ranked in the top three in both tests last year.

It’s unclear whether the Seahawks are willing to change their approach at guard. In the past they’ve used bigger left guards weighing in the 320lbs range (James Carpenter, Justin Britt, Alvin Bailey). It was interesting, however, that Terry Poole was drafted a year ago seemingly to compete at left guard and he weighed only 307lbs.

Whitehair’s tackle experience, run blocking, toughness, consistency and agility make him something of an ideal prospect for the Seahawks. The only thing letting him down is length — and that could be a sticking point.

He has 32.5 inch arms. In the Pete Carroll era, the Seahawks have never drafted an offensive lineman with sub-33 inch arms. We know they have strict size ideals at cornerback (32 inch arms, have to be taller than 5-10). They might feel the same way about their offensive linemen. They haven’t quite spelled it out like they have at cornerback.

Trent Kirchner (Director of Pro Personnel):

“You mean to tell me, you’re interested in drafting a quarterback that’s 5-10 when we won’t take a corner that’s under 5-10?”

Perhaps there’s a glimmer of hope for anyone who wants Whitehair to be drafted at #26? Seattle’s ideal size for a quarterback isn’t 5-10. They drafted Russell Wilson anyway because of his extreme talent. So while they are very strict about their ideals — there’s possibly a chance they’ll compromise for the right guy.

For what it’s worth, Joe Thomas also has 32.5 inch arms.

I mentioned yesterday that I watched Whitehair vs Emmanuel Ogbah and that’s another reason why I wanted to write about him today. He shut Ogbah down in that game, forcing him to switch sides so he could have a better showing against the right tackle.

His balance, strong base, power at the POA and complete body control is reminiscent of Zack Martin during his Notre Dame days. Martin also had sub-33 inch arms and played left tackle but had an immediate impact as a pro after switching to left guard.

Whitehair might go higher than a lot of people believe for that very reason. There are teams in the late teens and early 20’s that might believe he can be that plug-in-and-play guard. The type you don’t have to worry about for the next eight or ten years.

His lack of length and the hulking physicality of Germain Ifedi moved us away from considering a guy like this. Keep him on the radar for now. He’s 0.5 inches in arm length away from being virtually the ideal pick for this team and his excellent agility is a key reason why.

If they go in a different direction at #26 (especially if the don’t draft an offensive lineman in round one) — the likes of Haeg, McGovern and Boehm should also be monitored closely. It might even be a pretty accurate prediction to suggest they’ll try and draft two of Whitehair, Haeg, McGovern and Boehm.

A Seahawks contingent travelled to the North Dakota State pro-day recently where Haeg performed and they also worked out McGovern and Boehm at the Missouri pro-day.

Three of the four players listed above can play multiple positions:

Whitehair (C,G,T)
Haeg (T,G)
McGovern (C,G,T)
Boehm (C)

If the Seahawks want competition and options at multiple spots on their offensive line — that’s another reason why this quartet make sense. Players like Ifedi and Shon Coleman also have the potential to play tackle or guard.

If they draft a prospect like Jonathan Bullard in round one, they could look at Haeg, McGovern and Boehm in rounds 2-3. Remember — the Seahawks draft for their team and will take guys that fit their system even if the pick is considered a reach.

If they draft Whitehair (or another offensive lineman like Ifedi) in round one they could consider a defensive lineman like Willie Henry in round two (he had a quicker short shuttle than Bullard despite weighing 18lbs more). It’ll also be very interesting to see how Kyler Fackrell tests in the agility drills. He didn’t do them at the combine or the Utah State pro-day, probably due to some lingering injury issue.

If the Seahawks don’t like the DE-DT options in this class there’s every chance they’ll just add an EDGE or a player who can compete for the role vacated by Bruce Irvin. Fackrell is a splash-play specialist who impacts the passing game. He’s a high-energy, big effort prospect who had an excellent broad jump (10-1) at the combine and managed a 1.62 split.

He’s also long at 6-5, 245lbs with +33 inch arms and massive hands. They visited with Shea McLellin before he signed with the Patriots. Fackrell would provide a similar option and he might be there at #56.

Two possible scenarios rounds 1-4:

R1 — Cody Whitehair
R2 — Kyler Fackrell
R3 — Joe Haeg
R3 — Tyler Ervin

R1 — Jonathan Bullard
R2 — Connor McGovern
R3 — Tyler Ervin
R3 — Evan Boehm

194 Responses to “The importance of agility tests & four O-liners that fit Seattle”

  1. Trevor says:

    Great write up as always Rob and some interesting new names to discuss. Two guys who seemed to do well in both agility drills are Isaac Seumalo and Joe Thuney. Have you had a chance to look at them? I am particularly interested in Thuney who I think has some potential at Guard.

    • Rob Staton says:

      My initial thoughts on Thuney are he played small and has even shorter arms than Whitehair. He’s a center or nothing else really at the next level and he might get overpowered at the next level.

      Not watched Seumalo yet.

      • Cameron says:

        I was going to ask you the same question regarding Thuney. Seems like he should be a target in the same range that we took Glowinski last year. Other than arm length (like a 1/2 shorter than Conner McGovern by the way, so we are really splitting hairs) he seems very ‘Seahawky’. The following numbers are courtesy of mockdraftable.com re: Thuney

        20 yard shuttle – 4.54 – 87th percentile
        3 cone – 7.47 – 88th percentile
        Broad Jump – 110″ – 92nd percentile
        40 yard dash – 4.95 – 99th percentile

        Thuney checks all those boxes, with arms 1/2 inch shorter than Conner McGovern.

        The player comparisions mockdraftable provides are a who’s who of Seahawks, former Seahawks, and rumored past interest by the Seahawks. Names like Mike Person, Glowinski, McGovern, Mitch Morse and Ali Marpet. He profiles almost exactly like a Seahawks guard.

        I’d sure like to hear what it is we are missing with this guy. The tape I saw Thuney playing LT and he acquitted himself, I thought, very well.

        While you’re at it I’d love to hear your thoughts on Isaac Seumalo, who incidentally also profiles as a Seahawks guard.

      • GoHawks5151 says:

        Gotta watch Seumalo. Boy is a Dog! Health issues behind him he would be a awesome addition.

    • CharlieTheUnicorn says:

      Isaac Seumalo, he screams Seahawks to me in the 5th or 6th round. I wish his injury history magically vanished, he could be a top 2 round pick otherwise. Love his grit and determination.

  2. Trevor says:

    Really liked the Zach Martin / Cody Whitehair comp. I think you nailed that one.

  3. Sam Jaffe says:

    Rob,
    Can you elucidate more on the different things that the short shuttle and the three cone are testing?

    • Rob Staton says:

      The short shuttle measures change of direction and agility. The three cone reveals straight line and linear power, change of direction, braking and regaining top speed.

  4. I’ll say this; it can go either way (option 1 or option 2) and I will be 9 outta 10 level happy. Perfection would be the FO being in love with a DE/DT that is in R4 or lower and so they use our first 3 picks on OL (OT to RT, McGovern to C, Boehm/Dahl/Haeg to LG). I value OL a lot and want to see it get fully built (those 3 picks + Gilliam & Glow) so we will know our 5 starters on OL for the next 4+ years. I value that immensely.

    But I doubt they do that, more likely is they do one of your two options, with us going DT/DE either in R1 or R2, but us drafting OL twice in the first 3 rounds.

    • H M Abdou says:

      McGovern, man. That’s who they should draft, and not so much to play center, but to play left guard. He’s insanely strong, one of the key requirements of LG in the Cable scheme.

      • I think Center is a more impactful position to have an potentially elite player at then LG. Maybe considering Lewis is solid we’d have McGovern play at LG for 2016, assuming our OL looks like: Gilliam-Britt-Lewis-Glow-Webb.

        My hope however is that we upgrade C and LG so our interior OL is upgraded. That means grabbing a guy like McGovern and a guy like Dahl in rounds 2 and 3. Who Cable wants to be play at LG or C I would leave up to him.

        • H M Abdou says:

          Good point. You never know what Cable might see in an OL that we the public don’t see. It’s one thing to watch some youtube videos of a guy, another thing to see him perform in person, having the expertise and experience that Cable has.

          I can’t wait for Goodell to put Tennessee on the clock, already!

  5. Jujus says:

    I said it months ago I think the hawks desire the cohesion of having McGovern Boehm and britt. Guys have played years together.

    • bobbyk says:

      Britt has played with his current teammates with the Seahawks longer than any of the players who were sophomores at Missouri when he was a senior.

  6. sdcoug says:

    Hawks may have struck gold last year with the Clark / Lockett combo.

    Perhaps the symmetry of this year’s K-State / Michigan combo (whitehair & Henry) is not lost on the FO and will be too intriguing to pass

    • Volume12 says:

      Sorry to change the subject on ya, but did you see what Wazzu LB Ivan McClellan did on his pro day?

      Wow! Has that ‘Seahawky’ size at SAM ‘backer like Pink, Mike Mo, Korey Toomer, etc.

      • sdcoug says:

        McLennan.

        Yeah he’s really interesting. Seems to be just scratching his surface. Kind of a slow start being a two year JC guy. Very highly regarded when he signed with Wazzu, but was pretty quiet his first year. Might have just taken a bit to click, or it might be the coaching change to Grinch, but he Really exploded as a playmaker this year and can get into the backfield in a hurry. Might be one of those sneaky UDFA types.

      • sdcoug says:

        Speaking of sneaky good, I also think Destiny Vaeao is going to make someone’s football team and grow into a solid player. Another late bloomer who was a better DT than Xavier Cooper (now with the Browns) in my opinion

  7. Coachmattson says:

    Great article Rob! Yesterday I asked if Kelly C Alabama should be our pick at 26 because he looked like a plug and play player day 1 who could become apro bowler. Here you make it sound like Whitehair is that player. Is he your favorite then for us at 26. Also do u prefer option 1 or 2 and why. I like option 1! Thoughts from others? Go Hawks!

  8. rowdy says:

    I thought whitehair looks soft and uninterested in run blocking not a player I see the hawks liking

  9. GeoffU says:

    Dang, what’s up with Jake Brendel? Poor frame, not strong enough? Anybody seen how he plays? Could be a solid later round option at center.

    I would be very excited about the first option. Two lineman added to the competition, a pass rusher, and a playmaker. Can’t get any better than that.

  10. Jay says:

    Curios about Joe Thuney, he may have shorter arms but seems to fit the athletic profile and played multiple positions. He went back and forth between guard and tackle, playing left tackle this year. Showed well out at Shrine game and FWIW PFF graded him fourth highest run and pass blocker albeit behind Cody Whitehair. I think I read he didn’t give up a sack this year. His mockdraftable compares favorable with Glowinski, Mcgovern, Marpet and Morse. Could be one of those lineman we draft late like we did with Glow last year?

    • H M Abdou says:

      I don’t know much about Thuney, I must admit. I’ll read up on him and watch some video of him to get an idea.

    • Cameron says:

      I just commented to a post above and made all the same points you did re: Thuney. Haha – oh well. Guess I should read all the comments first.

      • Jay says:

        No, worries. I really like Thuney. His gamefilm against miss St.was fun to watch. He had some really well timed run blocks in the second level. He’s always looking for someone to block. Not sure if he uses the best technique all the time, but seems like a high effort player. Def think he’s a guard/center.

  11. H M Abdou says:

    GREAT stuff as always, Rob!

    Has anyone mentioned or considered the possibility of McGovern at LG? He’s about 6’4″ 305-310lbs now. If the Hawks draft him, they could ask him to put on about 10-15lbs and compete at LG (their “power” guard). McGovern certainly has the lower body/core strength to play there in the Hawks’ scheme.

    Any thoughts?

  12. Hawksince77 says:

    Rob,

    Based on your article that considered various defensive linemen for round one, and assuming we can trust JS when he says he signed his RT (Webb) and that Gilliam would compete for LT with the other OT they signed, and given that interior linemen can be found later in the draft, that makes the following first 4 rounds possible:

    First round – William Jackson, CB. Sky-high potential at arguably the most important position group on the team (secondary). With Lane signed as the starting nickel-back, we are talking about upgrading Shead/Simon/etc. Makes for a killer secondary.

    second round – Deion Jones, LB. Upgrade over Morgan as the starting SAM.

    Third/4th (3 picks) – best interior offensive lineman/Tyler Ervin/best interior lineman

    The first five picks would strengthen the secondary, lock down the LBs, provide an explosive 3rd down back, and two offensive linemen to compete for starting roles.

    In terms of adding incremental value to the team, this approach provides a ton.

    • Rob Staton says:

      They almost certainly won’t take a CB in round one. We can take that well and truly to the bank.

    • Jake says:

      I think there needs to be a front-4 defender in there somewhere. Clark was a great pick and maybe he’ll cut into Avril and Bennett’s snaps some this season but they need to continue to build that rotation.

    • STTBM says:

      Most mocks now have Deion Jones going far higher than Seattle’s pick in the second round–they would most likely have to get into the top of the second to get him.

      Other than that, I for one could see Seattle not drafting a linemen until the third-fifth rounds. Carrol said he’d bring in competition on the line, and make that a focus. But he never said he intended to dump high picks on the line.

      Not that I would mind one of our first two picks being O-line, or even 2 of the first 4. But if they arent looking for a Pro Bowl caliber G or a long-term Pro Bowl LT, why draft a linemen before the third or fourth round? You certainly can find Pro Bowl talent players at other positions in the second round, and sometimes the third–see Lockett, Tyler….

  13. Volume12 says:

    Big fan of Joe Haeg. Like his versatility. Just has the look of a Hawk.

    And while McGovern is ideal, wouldn’t shock me one bit if they take Boehm instead. Love his demeanor on and off the field.
    There’s also some very attractive O-lineman late on day 3 too. And while those guys aren’t likely to contribute right away, they are nice developmental, draft and stash, or PS candidates.

    On a side note. Gonna be inteteresting to see what the arm length of the O-lineman drafted this year ends up being. If they’re all 33″ inches,it could tell us they have a threshold/requirement like they do at other spots.

    • H M Abdou says:

      I also have heard that McGovern isn’t quite nasty and aggressive enough, traits that appeal to the Hawks in particular. Physically he’s qualified, but may not have the mentality or personality they’re looking for.

    • Trevor says:

      I think we have both liked Haeg for a while Vol. He just seems like a Cable pick with the Hockey / Wrestling background and being a former tackle.

      If we go Coleman or Ifedi with the 1st pick would love to see Haeg in the 3rd or 4th.

      • STTBM says:

        Being a wrestler, the Pats might be interested. They keep taking guys I think Seattle is high on just before or just after Seattle’s pick. Hope that doesnt continue…

        Im still scratching my head over ignoring the Florida State guys and picking Poole instead…

  14. D-OZ says:

    Nice wright -up Rob. You could probably throw Dahl in there too as a latter pick?

  15. D-OZ says:

    Hey, is it tomorrow there already? Whatcha doin bloggin on Happy Bunny Trails Day????

  16. Josh says:

    I like Whitehair because he upgrades the clear worst starter on the team. I just wonder with the interior options available later if they would be willing to make this move at 26. If they wait a round or two there are so many possibilities that it really doesn’t make sense to grab an interior guy in the 1st unless they think hes pro-bowl caliber or better. The same could be said for DL. IMO they almost have to go DE or OT at 26 or else they will be fighting the board way too much.

    • David says:

      With at least 2 new starters on the line (Glow/Webb) at this point in time, we don’t know yet that Britt is the current worst starter. Glow and/or Webb could be worse. Not saying its likely, but its a possibility.

  17. Jarhead says:

    I think Whitehair makes sense at #26. He fills a certain need, can challenge to start quickly, has technical proficiency while not being an utterky finished product. The tape against Ogbah shows something very positive: it appeared to change OK State’s game plan. Ogbah didn’t just look dominated, he looked like a player who was befuddled. Totally overwhelmed as to how to even approach Whitehair. Sending him away from Whitehair is very telling. At G, change of direction and burst are important in the ZBS, as often the G is asked toget across at DL’s face or to cross block a LB, and lateral agility and burst are vital in getting a position of leverage. Whitehair has that in spades. I think Seattle cpuld even double dip for Whitehair and still get McGovern/Westerman/Boehm in Rd 2. I think Martin and Coleman would be long gone, but if they are willing to roll the dice on a DT dropping through to early Rd 3 they could pull a T Lockett type move this year. This would be a pick that would have immediate impact

    • H M Abdou says:

      You make some interesting points about Whitehair. The only problem is, he really doesn’t fit their profile for the LG position. He’s not a big, strong, bully. He is a good pass protector, though, if they want to emphasize that more.

      For all we know, they could throw us all a curveball and end up taking Ifedi at 26 after all!

      Can anyone hardly wait for Goodell to put Tennessee on the clock?!

    • bobbyk says:

      I think Whitehair could play any of the five OL positions. He’s that good. Although unlikely, I see him competing at LT (even though guard is where he’d be most likely first earn Pro Bowl status).

      • STTBM says:

        You really like this Whitehair kid, Bobby. How much have you watched from his college tape?

        You were dead-on last year regarding Lockett, so Im listening when you get excited over a college player.

        You really think Seattle learned a lesson and adjusted after watching DeCastro do so well, to say nothing of losing out on Donovan Smith, Ali Marpet, and Fisher? Or are they just gonna continue taking guys in the fourth and fifth rounds and develop them?

        • Rob Staton says:

          Donovan Smith, Ali Marpet and Jake Fisher well all off the board before Seattle picked last year.

          Had they drafted DeCastro in 2012 that would’ve meant a first round pick on the OL in 2010, 2011 and 2012. They wanted/needed speed among the front seven that year and that’s what they set out to get.

          • STTBM says:

            Seattle was targeting a lineman in the second/third, possibly two, and they were bummed when their guy(s) were gone. Reports were all over Seattle was trying to trade up into the top of the second and the top of the third. They couldnt get high enough, their guy(s) go taken, so they moved on and trade up for Lockett. JS even admitted they couldnt get where they wanted to, and basically admitted their guy got nabbed and so they moved on.

            Ive always felt they had Smith and Marpet targeted.

            I think they would have moved around more if they had landed either Smith or Marpet, in order to get more Draft Capital to trade up and get Lockett. We know they had Clark and Lockett targeted as guys they had to get.

            • STTBM says:

              And they had to have loved Fisher. The guy is perfect for them. They just likely knew they couldnt get close to landing him.

            • Rob Staton says:

              Marpet went two picks before Seattle picked. If they wanted to trade up for him they could’ve, quite easily.

              • H M Abdou says:

                Marpet did a good job run-blocking, but not a very good job protecting Winston. He needs to improve there, or he’s going to get Jameis hurt. And no excuses for Marpet, he plays what most people consider the easiest of all the OL positions: RG.

              • STTBM says:

                It was reported they said the price was more than they were willing to pay–though my memory isnt 100% and perhaps that was what JS said about his attempt to trade up into the high second?

  18. RWIII says:

    Rob nice article. In the 1st five rounds the Hawks have 6 picks. The are The Hawks are one pick short.

    In the first 5 rounds the Hawks need:

    Thee offensive lineman.
    A running back.
    A run stuffing defensive tackle
    A pass rusher
    Finally the Hawks need a linebacker. To replace Bruce Irvine
    That comes to seven areas of need.
    The Hawks only have 6 picks in the first 5 rounds. Schneider is one pick short.

    In rounds 6/7 +UDFAs Schneider is going to have to work his magic.

    • bobbyk says:

      True, but you never expect a 5th round pick to make an immediate impact either. Rarely 4th rounders, especially when they are late in the fourth.

      • STTBM says:

        Ah, but yet that is where JS has made his mark in the draft. While he’s whiffed utterly on first rounders, a trade (Harvin), and third round linemen, he’s found quick starters/producers like KJ Wright, Sherman, and Lane in the fourth-sixth rounds. Though not lately.

    • EranUngar says:

      RWII, are you sure the Seahawks can manage with just 3 offensive linemenpicked in the top of the draft?

      Maybe it would better to pick 4 just in case….

  19. Jeff says:

    I’d be on board with Whitehair at LG. Think upgrading the interior of this line has to be the priority considering you play Donald twice a year and Car DTs are so good. But I still prefer Ryan Kelly. think he’s a complete stud and would prefer him to Whitehair despite a bit of a lack of flexibility. He could be the Ryan Kalil for this line and solidify a crucial spot.

    • EranUngar says:

      Re CAR’s DTs and Donald :

      We played those guys 4 times last year and faced the same difficulties that everybody face against those guys. We ended up losing all 4 games.

      CAR allowed 19.2 points per game in 2015. We scored 23.5 points per game against them.

      STL allowed 20.6 points per game in 2015. We scored 24 points per game against them.

      CAR scored

      Maybe it’s not just the OL that failed us in those games? Maybe allowing the RAMS to score 57 points in two games against us had something to do with it???

  20. bobbyk says:

    I’d be pumped if we got Whitehair and Fackrell.

    I can’t think of a better draft at the moment than:

    1. Whitehair, OL
    2. Fackrell, OLB/DE
    3. Hargrave, DT
    3. Ervin, RB
    4. Cooper, OT

    I know that isn’t heavy enough on OL like I would have originally wanted, but when Carroll talks about shelves and not cliffs on the OL this year… I honestly don’t see any/much difference between Fahn Cooper at tackle than some of the top ranked tackles. Call me crazy, but I’d rather have Cooper over Staley. I think he (Staley) has bust written all over him.

    • EranUngar says:

      BobbyK,

      I fully agree with you. I also believe that the Seahawks will draft only one OL in the first 2 days of the draft.

      Considering how happy we are with Gilliam and Glow starting after a red shirt year under TC, why not add more such talent on day 3 and UDFA to develop potential starters for next year.

      It worked with our CB program….why not with our OL?

      • Rob Staton says:

        Teams apparently see a drop off on OL after the first two days. I think it’s very very likely they take two OL in rounds 1-3. They need more talent and competition there and they know that.

      • Scraps says:

        “It worked with our CB program….why not with our OL?”

        First, so far it hasn’t worked with our OL; why do you think that using lower picks (or UDFA) would be better? Second, I think we can propose a reason why “it worked with our CB program”: Carroll was a defensive back, and he’s a excellent teacher of his methods. “[W]hy not add more such talent on day 3 and UDFA to develop potential starters for next year” is not mostly a good method, just because it worked with one position.

    • STTBM says:

      Bobbyk, I agree. I like that draft scenario as well. Im not as sold on Ervin as many here are, I think there are guys you can get later that can play the third-down back role and have better size/speed combo’s, but he’s certainly exciting to watch.

      • Rob Staton says:

        I think people are misjudging Ervin’s prospective role.

        You wouldn’t be drafting him to be a third down back. You’d be drafting him to be a dynamic weapon who can line up all over the field and provide some Brian Westbrook style running from the backfield.

        There’s more chance he’d be the #2 rotating with Rawls and they ask Michael to do the pass pro (or someone else). Ervin is too good to pigeon hole.

        • Jarhead says:

          This may be an old school reference for some, but people need to think of Ervin in more of a Steve Broussard role. Broussard was a great ST wespon, a change of pace back with speed and some power as a change up to Ricky Watters, and he was effetive in the pass/screen game. That is what I see in Ervin. I don’t think he will be a rookie All-Pro like Lockett but he will be a solid weapon and could be a great left hook if Rawls is our right cross. Think of him like Steve Broussard and less like just a 3rd down back

          • STTBM says:

            Ok. I was a huge Broussard fan from his college days, and was thrilled to see him as a Hawk for awhile. I always thought he deserved more opps to run the ball…

        • J says:

          I could see them taking Ervin to fill the WR role – that is instead of drafting a WR. All for it.

          But I see mocks with us drafting just Ervin as if that fills our need at RB. It doesn’t as I don’t think Ervin has the size to be that 20-30 carry a game, between the tackles runner that we need.

          • Rob Staton says:

            They don’t need a 20-30 carry guy though. They already have Rawls and Michael who are sturdier.

            Plus I think he can be Brian Westbrook and he had a fair few carries.

            • HI Hawk says:

              There are quite a few smaller backs in the league that have been successful as part of a rotation. Ervin could have a nice role here with Rawls and Michael. Looking at the three of them together is a lot more helpful than thinking Ervin is suddenly going to usurp the starting role and replace Beast Mode’s 20-25 carries a game. He’s probably best suited to 12-15 touches a game as a runner, receiver, and possibly returner.

      • Volume12 says:

        Ervin might be the most versatile prospect in this draft.

        Has played RB, WR, STs, CB.

        He doesn’t have to be used strictly on 3rd downs.

        • STTBM says:

          I get that. I didnt mean his only use would be on third down–Seattle would likely use him as they did Harvin (though not as often), lining him up all over the field. However, especially as a rookie, I think he would primarily be used on third downs, or in the hurry-up offense at the end of half and late in games. I cant see them using a rookie his size on too many first and second downs when they have Rawls and Michaels, considering how they used Lynch. They like their first/second down guys to be bruisers.

          If he turns out as good as you guys believe he will, and he’s a Seahawk, I will be thrilled. I wont care if they call him a RB, a WR, an H-back, or Godzilla lol!

          • HI Hawk says:

            I think he’s perfectly suited to the Godzilla-back. Did you see him breathe fire during the Senior Bowl? As a matter of fact his fire breath is in the 99th percentile among NFL runningbacks.

  21. EranUngar says:

    The great thing about “measurables” is that they are easy to measure. The bad thing about them is that they measure the human body as a machine and tells you nothing about how the guy actually plays the game.

    Since Joe Thomas was mentioned here, allow me to add to his short 32.5 arms, his wretched 4.88 short shuttle and 7.95 3 cone performance. He is just the best LT in football…

    Sweezy was a proud member of the agility club. Soko, Gilliam and Glow are also in that class. If you pick a player based on those measurables you will find ample supply on day 3 of the draft and beyond. (could that be the turn the Seahawks took last year?)

    I can understand using those measurables to make the pick between two football players whose long term scouting reports match evenly. I can’t accept that after a long & costly scouting process you just pick the fastest whatever.

    Having said that, when Whitehair is concerned, there is a uncanny resemblance between his stats and those of Max Unger. Both had poor vertical jumps – Cody – 25.5, Max 24.5.
    Both had great agility numbers: three cone – Cody 7.32, Max 7.39 and short shuttle Cody 4.58, Max 4.50.
    Maybe we are on to something here.

    • Cameron says:

      Good points Eran and a sobering reminder.

      Unfortunately measurables are just about the only bit of objective data we have in this whole process. We are not privy to the private conversations between the front office and scouts, players and scouts, players and coaches, etc etc. We can read the tea leaves and make all sorts of conjecture regarding scouting trips and official visits, whatever that is worth.

      We can watch tape, and that has some value – but we are all mostly (myself included) rank amateurs when it comes to dissecting the tape in terms of what to look for.

      But we all know a 4.4 forty is faster than a 4.5 forty.

    • Rob Staton says:

      Measurables are vital to this team. They won’t even take a corner with sub 32 inch arms or an EDGE without a certain split. They have their own version of SPARQ and agility testing for their O-liners is crucial. We can say with some certainty that they won’t take an O-liner with poor agility unless they plan to use them as a mauling left guard.

      • EranUngar says:

        Rob,

        I fully agree that they take measurables very seriously in that poor measurables like sub 32 arms at CB etc are grounds for dismissale. You may be spot on regarding the agility measurables Since Sweezy, Gilliam, Glow and Soko all display those traits.

        However, after we dismiss the unsuitable, I hope we sort and rank the suitable by how they actually play football.

        If the measurables are the only/main cretiria, why waste top round picks on measurables you can easily find in day 3 and beyond?

        • Rob Staton says:

          I think we have done that though. Whitehair is a first or second round talent with plus agility. The other guys discussed are top-100 types so rounds 2-3. We’ve not just identified first round prospects, the four we covered are options with any of Seattle’s first four picks.

          • EranUngar says:

            I have no problem with the guys listed. They are all worthy candidates and focusing on their agility was a very solid move.

            I am just pointing out that not every agile player (Brendel, Blythe) is a suitable top pick.

            I do however believe that we will see some agile cadidates picked on day 3 and UDFAs to add to Cable’s red shirts development program like Glow and Soko. Considering how happy everyone is with Glow starting at RG, it may not be such a bad idea. (pick your top OT high and stock the red shirt ranks later for next year…)

            • Rob Staton says:

              Who is claiming Brendel and Blythe are either worthy of top picks or would be for the Seahawks?

              The point of the article was never to say all of these guys are worthy of high picks for the Seahawks. That’s not even been hinted at. Four guys were clearly identified from a group of many.

            • Dingbatman says:

              It has been stated many times here on this blog that the Seahawks value measurables AND production. Typically Rob will refer to the measurables on a group of players who have already proven their ability to produce at a high level.

  22. EranUngar says:

    As for the 2 draft mocks you suggest:

    I found out that i am not sure if either Bullard or Whitehair are indeed sure impact first round picks. It is a common predicament of picking late in the first round when all the top guys are gone.

    Then it hit me.

    My master plan for the draft:

    CLE is in full rebuilt mode with a new HC. They may want to pick their QB late in the 1st and would want as many draft picks as they can get this year. We trade our first round pick for CLE’s 3rd round pick this year (65) and their first round pick next year. (Just like Tim Ruskell trade in 2009 that got us Earl Thomas in 2010)

    Considering the state of the Browns and their tough devision, it would give us a proper top pick in the first round next year.

    Now, we use our 56 and 65 picks to get McGovern and Fackrell (or similar) and carry on with the draft.

    Just imagine a top 10 pick next year….

    • Trevor says:

      I like the idea but doubt the Browns would ever do it. That new FO seems like they will place great value on picks if they follow the money ball approach.

      If we make that trade then take Jaylon Smith as well it would be like getting two top 10 picks next year.

      The Browns pick will likely be #1 overall and they know it so would never make the trade but interesting to discuss.

      • EranUngar says:

        Its a long shot but a new GM and a new HC may want to make a splash. That trade will give them 3 picks in the top 32 this year. Those are 3 talented players to start your building process. With them on board they may only get the 3rd or 4th pick next year and not hit rock bottom….

        It’s a nice dream…

  23. Trevor says:

    Rob

    I would love to see you do a Seahawks Draft Blog top 50 big board focussing on potential draft prospects only so excluding corners with sub 32 inch arms, qbs, consensus top 10 picks.

    Basically your top 50 players in this draft who fit the Seahawks criteria regards of what round they are supposed to go in etc.

    I know you probably have enough on your plate but I am guessing you likely have an informal one done up already.

    Thanks again for this blog it used to be my draft season football addiction but now it is basically all season and draft season. Incredible work really and I still think you are missing your calling to become an NFL scout hopefully for the Hawks.

  24. dave crockett says:

    Note on Boehm.

    He started as a true freshman at LG for Mizzou, and VERY few true freshman started for Gary Pinkel at any position. Boehm might have stayed at guard, except Morse had a habit of snapping balls a mile over the QB’s head. They moved Morse back to RT and Boehm to C in-game vs Georgia iirc, and that was that.

    Boehm has game snaps at both Guard and Center. So at least in theory he is a multi-position player.

  25. Trevor says:

    I know everyone likes the Mizzou OL guys and Morse played well as a rookie but I really don’t get the infatuation with the Mizzou OL myself. Britt has been an absolute bust.

    I recommend anyone who is high on the Mizzou OL to watch the Miss St game last year as it is available online. Chris Jones and Miss St defense absolutely dominated them.

    As I said I know Morse was really good last year but I think the rest including Mcgovern and Boehm may be rated a lot higher on this blog and perhaps by the Seahawks than the rest of the league does.

    • vrtkolman says:

      To be fair, Britt is only a bust because Seattle massively reached for him.

      • Nate says:

        LOL, THIS is sooo true.
        The Lions G Warford, was a steal, Bitonio, Terron Armstead (who I argue could play C), etc.

    • EranUngar says:

      Britt is a bust???

      When did that happen?

      Just last week PC said about the guard spots that with Britt and Glow as they feel secure with a big upside.

      I guess we only take his words when they are negative…

      • Rob Staton says:

        Eran you keep referencing Carroll’s take on Britt.

        I’ll keep saying in response — what do you expect him to say about a guy who will be on the roster next year whatever happens?

        There’s every chance Britt won’t start in 2016 but they don’t say that in public. They will still want him competing for a job and not feeling like it’s a total lost cause. They also don’t want whichever rookie they draft to compete at LG thinking they’ve won the job before camp even begins.

        There’s a massive difference between these comments and Carroll’s admission that OL was a priority going into the off-season.

        • STTBM says:

          That is an excellent point, Rob. Carrol surely wont give away Draft Strategy, nor identify positions they have targeted for the first couple picks. And he wont publicly call out or run down a player they intend to keep around. And bad as Britt has struggled, they will keep him through his contract at least. He isnt so bad you’d cut him before his four years on the cheap are up.

          And there are no guarantees in the Draft. They could very well indeed have Britt penciled in as a likely bench-warmer this year, with his replacement picked out for one of the first two picks. If they miss out on their guy, or they get their guy and he sucks and cant outplay Britt, its not a good look for them to be dumping on Britt beforehand. As you say, that could have a twofold effect; putting too much stress on a rookie, and messing with Britt’s confidence.

          Most teams do exactly what Carrol is doing; admit you will bring in competition at your area of weakness, talk up your guys, and downplay any panic–actual or perceived. Neither him nor JS are going to tell anyone outside the Draft Room what their strategy is.

        • EranUngar says:

          You keep voicing your opinion and i keep voicing mine. As more and more positive statements arrive from PC and JS i feel as right about mine as you do about yours.

          We both know what Pete said in that sentence at the end of the season. To me it was clear he was happy with the OL getting into rhythm and wanting more consistency doing it. You only see the “we haven’t nailed it yet” etc.

          You chose to ignore the fact that not even once did they mention the draft as a key direction regarding the OL. I think both JS and PC were very open and clear about the OL last week.

          We all agree that the OL took a turn by mid season. I believe that they acknowledge the mistakes done by picking Nowak over Lewis and by setting that line just two weeks before the season. This is the part that they would work to improve on – Setting the line early and getting them to work together and gel before the season starts. PC even pointed to it in one of his last statements.

          • vrtkolman says:

            I’ll say this, they aren’t going to give away what position they are keying in on for the draft. Everything is smoke and mirrors at this point.

          • David says:

            Just watch the Russell’s pick 6 to Keuchly vs the Panthers playoff game. And that’s the last game of the year. Britt’s incompetence at LG is astonishing, and it’s not like that’s the only time its happened.

            • EranUngar says:

              Yes, it’s a play i watched a few times myself. Britt was one of two players that played it very poorly. The other was a QB, under pressure after watching the defense totally collapse facing CAR’s running game and trying to force a desperate pass he had no business attempting that early in the game.

              I have yet to hear a word about it from anybody…

              • KingRajesh says:

                You also see Marshawn not even look for the ball as the pocket collapses when he’s supposed to be the safety valve check-down.

                It’s not all Britt’s fault, some of the fault has to be placed on Marshawn.

                • STTBM says:

                  Sure. Not surprising Lynch was rusty though. You cant expect him to miss all those games and not have a play or two where he makes a mistake or is a step slow with a read.

                  And yeah, Wilson made a horrid decision. Krieg-esque (and I loved me some Krieg), a real head scratcher of a decision. But he gets a pass (mostly) because of how totally that play was blown up across the board. It was an unmitigated disaster.

                  I think a lot more blame should have been placed on Bevell’s gameplan. Carolina knew exactly what we were gonna do on every play. Heck, everyone on TV knew what plays we were running, because we went so conservative even Chuck Knox would have been disgusted.

                  From Carrol on down, that team was not ready to play that day. They had a gameplan to lose all ready to go, and the players werent on their game.

          • Trevor says:

            Britt was the worst rated RT year #1 and got switched to LG year #2 because the preferred an UDFA tight end convert who had never started a game on the OL in his life.

            Britt then proceeded to be the worst rated LG in the NFL. You can read into Petes comments whatever you want but the is no denying or arguing that he has been awful for two years and a bust as a 2nd round pick.

            • EranUngar says:

              OK, i give up. I have to admit i do not like Britt too.

              He had a good end of the year during his rookie year at RT and i was hopeful he will carry on improving but his performance in those first pre-season games was horrible.

              I think they will probably try to groom someone this year to replace him next year like they did with Sweezy/Glow.

              As much as i personally feel against Britt, i’m not sure TC or PC feel the same.

              • CHawk Talker Eric says:

                You seem to put a lot of stock into what PC says. This is what he said about Britt after the loss to CAR in the Divisional round:

                On Justin Britt: “We’re going to figure that out. I can’t tell you that right now. It’s good he can play there, it’s good he can play guard and tackle and that’s going to be to his benefit.”

                Compare that to what he said in that same presser about Sokoli: “Yeah, and at that position in particular, yeah. Kristjan Sokoli, I’m really excited about what he can do. But he’s a transition guy, and we decided not to try and force the issue with him to try to make him play right now. He needs a whole other year to get through this, and then we’ll see where he is. He’s an exceptional athlete. I want to see him play center, I want to see how he does there as he grows through it, and just see how much ground he can make up, and see where that leaves us. We’ll have one of the really good athletes at center if that’s where he winds up playing. He’s fast, he’s quick, he’s athletic, and all of that.”

                He raved about a guy who was never active during the entire season. And he barely said anything (other than “it’s good he’s versatile”) about a guy that started every game the past 2 seasons. Read into it what you want, but it’s definitely not an endorsement of Britt moving forward.

              • Rob Staton says:

                I’m pretty sure, almost certain in fact, they know they need to replace Britt.

                • STTBM says:

                  But he’s fairly cheap and he’s versatile. Well, he can play two positions pretty poorly anyway…

                  You really think they will draft a guy to compete immediately with Britt at LG? If they can trade down in the first and get a second round pick in the top third of that round, plus a third or fourth, then I could see them spend a second on a LG.

                • J says:

                  Not entirely sure on that. They could be focused on adding competiton on day three, with the best of Britt/Poole/draft taking the job.

                  Wouldn’t surprise me at all if they weren’t ready to completely cut bait.

            • Jarhead says:

              I think Eran is expressing concern that the Seahawks FO may try and be proud and not want to give up on Britt. It isn’t support for Britt keepimg his job but fear that the FO’s pride and stubbornness will cause them to stick with Britt rather than admit a sunk cost. IE Christine Michael, sticking with Drew Nowak and Cary Williams and even Percy Harvin way too long. It is a possibility. This FO will eventually cut bait but sometimes just a little too late. I can see where he is coming from

              • CHawk Talker Eric says:

                Interesting you think SEA stuck with those guys way too long.

                Most everyone else (media, fans, pundits) expressed praise for SEA cutting Harvin and Williams so quickly. Not many teams trade a bunch of picks including a R1, plus millions in cap space, for a player they cut a year and a half later. Not many teams sign a vet CB to big money but cut him during the first season with the team.

              • Rob Staton says:

                They showed no pride in cutting Harvin or Moffitt previously. Or Matt Flynn.

                Did they stick with Michael? I mean, someone had to be the third RB. And they cut him before the end of his rookie season.

                There’s no evidence of stubbornness as far as I can see.

                • STTBM says:

                  Quite the contrary Jarhead. JS and PC have shown a remarkable track record for moving on ruthlessly, despite the cost. They began trying to trade Harvin before the SB, and kept at it until they finally dumped him to the Jets. They dumped LenWhale White pretty fast too. Not to mention moving on from guys who had once done well but faded, like Mike Williams.

                  Sticking with Nowak had nothing to do with money or draft capital invested, as he was an UDFA pickup. That was all Cable, who thought he could train Nowak up fast enough to be a better long-term player than Lewis and Jean-Pierre. He was dead wrong, and we lost several games because of it.

                  And Williams was benched perhaps a couple weeks too late, but they cut him pretty fast once Lane could play even at 75%. I’d say cutting him as quick as they did was shocking.

                  The one guy they stuck with too long was James Carpenter. They had legit competition for him on the roster, but never even gave him a fair shot at the position (Bowie).

                • Jarhead says:

                  Nowak and Williams directly cost us games. And they stuck with Harvin even after he had been in an altercation with Golden Tate. Allegedly. And I do think they stuck with Britt, Nowak, and Williams far too long. Yes they moved on from Flynn but I always felt he was insurance against RW not the other way around. Ifisagree that they have exhibited some pride and stubbornness. I don’t think you can get to the elite level that they have without a degree of prode and stubbornness. If they don’t make a true concerted effort to replace Britt this season, I feel it reflects that. He probably should have been replaced last year. Any number of players could have been better. Wiz could have for sure, he isn’t an all pro but better than Britt for sure. So I would certainly have to disagree that they haven’t shown any stubbornness.

          • rowdy says:

            They also said carpenter and sweezy were the best guards in the game

            • EranUngar says:

              Carp makes the NYJ fans very happy at 5M a year. Sweezy just got signed to a 6.5M a year contract that is more then our 5 starting O-Liners make per year combined.

              So, is it only us here that know the truth about those guys???

              • STTBM says:

                Carp is playing much better in NY than he ever did here. Part of that could be that his fat ass is finally healthy, but I think a bigger reason is he’s playing in a power blocking scheme rather than in a ZBS. He was just too damned slow-footed to be worth a crap in the ZBS.

          • Rob Staton says:

            More and more positive statements??

            You mean the coach making one remark about Justin Britt — when he really couldn’t say anything else?

            • H M Abdou says:

              I certainly hope so. I’m actually kinda starting to reconsider Ifedi, despite his rawness. His upside is incredible. But I would say at this point that a sensible draft would start with:

              R1: Bullard or Neal
              R2: McGovern or Whitehair
              R3: Ervin

    • Volume12 says:

      Trev, you know as well as anyone else on this board, probably even moreso, that it’s about identifying guys that fit the Seahawks criteria.

      Rob has pointed out for example, he’s not a huge fan of Joe Haeg, but we aren’t the ones making the picks. But, he can see why they’d like him.

      And when they do take someone, or are intetested in them, sometimes ya gotta go back and look at why. Or ask yourself ‘what is it about this guy?’

      Better have more than tape to be a Seahawk.

      • Trevor says:

        I agree Vol that is why I said this board and the Hawks as well grade the Mizzou guys higher than most.

        I hated the Britt pick since day #1 correctly. I thought Morse got drafted a round early and that was obviously wrong.

        Vol I ask you to watch the Miss St / Mizzou game from this past year and then tell me what grade / round you would give McGovern and Boehm if you did not know their SrRQ or SLA score. I have since watched two more games and they were no better.

        I am not raging the Hawks are interested and in fact would be surprised if they did not pick one of them. I am just giving my opinion that I just don’t think either guy is any better than a mid round talent. Round 2 is a Britt size leap for either Mizzou OL prospect IMO based on the 3 games I have watched.

        • Volume12 says:

          Well, before the combine or pro days I’d say McGovern was a 2nd-4th rounder and Boehm was a 4th rounder.

          I still think they are. But, picking at the end of each round on a yearly basis, sometimes ya gotta grab your guy earlier than what the consensus is.

  26. STTBM says:

    Excellent write-up, Rob. You make your case very well.

    I have no idea if Seattle has gotten tired of just missing on guys they target on the O-line, then have to watch kick butt elsewhere. Perhaps they will draft a linemen or two in the first 3 rounds. Or perhaps they will continue doing what they have the past couple years–ID one position they have to have a certain level of player at (RT/LG–Britt), then just go ahead drafting fourth-sixth rounders they hope to coach up. But you make a good case for them taking one or two of those guys on your list. Sure wouldnt bother me if they take 1-2 of those guys high in the Draft.

    With Seattle showing so much interest in Bullard, who just doesnt seem like first round talent to me, it makes me highly suspicious of they trading down into the upper third of the second round to take him. Or even weirder, it could be a smoke-screen (they’ve played games with visits before, like with the LB’s from Montana) and they may be after a more athletic inside-out guy in the first round; Nkemdiche.

    I know, his motor was iffy, his character flaws even more obvious and on display at the combine, and his passion for the game may not be what Seattle requires. But still, he’s a guy they could coach up and we all know they love freak athletes in the first couple rounds, and they have a track record of taking guys with attitude problems–though its been a mixed bag for sure in that department (Harvin, Clark, etc). IF–and its a BIG If–Seattle thinks he will be a guy who gives better effort in the Pros than he did in College–Seattle might be willing to take a roll of the dice.

    If not, unless someone with really freakish athletic ability falls to 26, I really see them doing their usual and trading down for more picks. Especially since this draft is loaded on run stuffing DT’s and others who might be contributors in the later rounds.

    • Volume12 says:

      Didn’t they take one of those LBs from Montana?

      • STTBM says:

        Yes, they ignored the faster LB Jordan Tripp (despite having worked him out and brought him to Seattle), who went a round below his projection, to the Dolphins, and instead waited and picked up Brock Coyle. Coyle was better even than they expected, as Carrol admitted, and did so well in preseason they moved him ahead of KJ Wright backing up Wags at MIKE, and he started a game or three for us two seasons ago as a rookie, when Wags got hurt.

        Last season he got hurt early in the year, and was IR’d with the Designation to Return, and they had to go with Wright backing up Wags when he went down with injury yet again. Coyle played some on Special Teams but is backing up Wags at MIKE, and Im not sure if he’s behind or in front of Wright at that spot–Wright has improved and might have pushed Coyle to third string.

        • STTBM says:

          Still not sure if Seattle was playing games by checking out Tripp or what. Maybe he struggled in his workout or interviews at VMAC? He was much more highly regarded coming out of college than Coyle, and far faster/quicker. But as we’ve seen, Coyle is a Football Player, plain and simple. He picked up the mental aspect immediately, while Tripp has struggled to adapt to the NFL and has really only played on Special Teams.

          • Volume12 says:

            No, I think they were genuinely interested in Tripp.

            But, the thing about VMAC visits is, some they get a better read and know instantly if he fits. Others they could be like, ‘eh, nice player, but not what we thought. Or just doesn’t have our mentality.’

      • HawkfaninMT says:

        They signed Brock Coyle as a udfa…

        Tyrone Holmes is no joke though. Been watching the Griz for years and he compares very favorably to the impact Bierman had while playing for the Griz. For a 6th I would love that type of production and consistency.

    • EranUngar says:

      While i totally disagree with your view on the OL, i fully agree that a mild trad back seems very likely.

      There are so many guys who look like a great value pick early in the 2nd and very few who look like a sure first round pick available at 26.

    • CHawk Talker Eric says:

      “IF–and its a BIG If–Seattle thinks he will be a guy who gives better effort in the Pros than he did in College–Seattle might be willing to take a roll of the dice.”

      Why would SEA think that? There’s zero evidence from anywhere to suggest Nkemdiche will do anything differently than he has in the past. And would SEA really spend their R1 pick on a “BIG If”?

      Not picking on you. I just don’t understand the infatuation with Nkemdiche. He’s a top tier athlete with an entitled attitude who’s an okay footballer. He was never dominant in college, despite a splash play here or there.

      I bet anything SEA have as much interest in him as they did in Randy Gregory. Oh wait, they didn’t have any interest in Gregory.

      • STTBM says:

        Most college players come out with poor or little technique. They rely on athleticism in college, because they can, and because the assistant coaching is leaps and bound below the NFL level.

        It isnt only the O-line guys that have sloppy technique and limited repertoire of moves etc. D-line, pass rushing LB’s, and even DB’s are often raw as sushi when coming to the NFL, to say nothing of QB’s and WR’s, who notoriously need a year or more to get up to speed.

        Some players with amazing athleticism or off the charts smarts become far better NFL players than they were in college. But those guys are generally the really passionate, hard-working types like Doug Baldwin and Richard Sherman.

        I have no idea if Nkemdiche has the internal fire to learn and improve in the NFL, but he surely has the athleticism. You cant teach passion though, thats an internal drive. And if he lacks that drive–as seems likely–then Seattle wont be interested.

        But if they do take a chance on the guy, I wont be shocked.

    • Rob Staton says:

      Nkemdiche has serious, serious issues that go well beyond football.

      Violence, drugs. He needs help and so does his brother. The problem is, neither of them seem to acknowledge it.

      • 503Hawk says:

        Rob; concerning STTBM’s comment; if they do trade back, would it behoove them to pick up a 2017 pick?

      • STTBM says:

        I hadnt heard of any issues beyond his falling out the window on drugs and then his crappy combine comments stating Tunsil was there. Well, that and his underachieving in college despite his freak talent.

        Seattle is still looking for another guy similar to Bennett to go inside-out, and Bullard seems to have more in common with Lawrence Jackson than is good for him (ie, not fast enough to be a great pass rusher). Thats why some are wondering if Seattle might take a chance on him.

        And we dont know if Seattle was interested in Gregory or not. Obviously they werent interested in him enough to take him before Dallas did, and his suspension showed why.

        • Rob Staton says:

          There’s a chance, IMO, Nkemdiche lasts into day three. That’s how serious the issues are.

          • STTBM says:

            Wow!

            Thats a shame. Wasting talent like he seems intent on doing always makes me shake my head. Kinda like that poor kid I was pissed Seattle didnt draft–Martavis Bryant. His agent insists he’s not a partier, that he has serious depression and anxiety problems. In the end, it doesnt matter, the result is the same; suspension and failure.

            Im rooting hard for Bryant to get his stuff together. Nkemdiche too, to a lesser degree.

            • CHawk Talker Eric says:

              Jon Ledyard on Nkemdiche:

              @LedyardNFLDraft: He’s a day 3 guy to me, considering all the off field issues. Personally, if Im a team, I’m just not interested.

  27. KingRajesh says:

    Hey Rob,

    If we can’t get a DE/DT hybrid like Bennett or Clark in the earlier rounds with Nkemdiche or Bullard, are there some other prospects in the later rounds who could do similar things?

    I was looking into DE Matt Judon over the weekend and I liked the physical traits (HIGH END speed and power) and the immense production (even though it was at a small school). He seems like somebody who could spell Bennett for a time in the rotation if we could develop him – he’s still very raw.

    • Rob Staton says:

      The options are limited after round one. FWIW I don’t think Nkemdiche will even be on their board. Willie Henry might be able to do the DE-DT, maybe Kaufusi.

  28. Madmark says:

    1 Bullard
    2 McGovern
    3 Haeg
    4 Ervin
    I could see this combination. For some reason I can see them taking the corn fed Irish boy from ND St. because he’s SPARQly.

  29. dawgma says:

    I think one thing they may not want to leave the draft without is a Center that has PLAYED CENTER and has the athletic profile to even potentially stand up to the nasty interior penetrators who absolutely decimate our entire offense. We saw last year that they LOVE the idea of getting more athletic there with the Novack and Sokoli experiments, but neither of those guys could actually handle the mental part of the job. With Lewis showing competency there, maybe they’ll be comfortable with an athletic convert again, but I think they really want to improve athletically at Center however they can. I suspect that was why they were willing to trade Unger in the first place.

    Also makes me wonder what they have in mind for Sokoli. He’s a freak, but asking him to move to OL AND take the center duties was kind of nuts. Could be be in competition for the other interior spots after a year of development as a backup?

    • 503Hawk says:

      dawgma, I couldn’t agree w/ you more. I believe the first O-line pick they make this year will be someone they feel confident could be a legitimate plug & play center. (esp if they go defensive playmaker in 1).

    • H M Abdou says:

      I also was wondering if maybe Carroll and Cable now feel that it was a tall order to not only have Soko switch to OL, but center, no less. That position requires a lot of savvy, a lot of experience and intelligence. Maybe Soko can back up Glow at RG and also back up whoever the center will be.

      • Dawgma says:

        Yeah, they seem to really like Sokoli and want to get him reps. I imagine we see a LOT of him in the preseason just trying to get him on the field. Maybe competing along the I terror earlier in games and aging large parts of the 2nd half at center. Also did a new draft Sim with this in MI d using a different board and it’s a tall order to get and established C with top-tier athletic traits. Ended up with:

        26: R1P26
        OT GERMAIN IFEDI
        TEXAS A&M
        56: R2P25
        DT ADOLPHUS WASHINGTON
        OHIO STATE
        90: R3P27
        G CONNOR MCGOVERN
        MISSOURI
        98: R3P35
        RB TYLER ERVIN
        SAN JOSE STATE
        125: R4P26
        OLB TRAVIS FEENEY
        WASHINGTON
        172: R5P32
        CB DARYL WORLEY
        WEST VIRGINIA
        216: R6P40
        WR DEVON CAJUSTE
        STANFORD
        226: R7P4
        OT JOE DAHL
        WASHINGTON STATE
        248: R7P26
        WR MIKE THOMAS
        SOUTHERN MISS

        Didn’t plan on doubling up on WR but it was there, and Dahl in R7? Yeah, okay.

        Also, Canute is another example of the agility drills being important. They seem to be leaning towards valuing quick W ‘s that can show separation for Russ. Cajuste doesn’t look like that on tape, but his agility numbers are straight up freakish for a pass catcher his size.

        • STTBM says:

          I for one like all your picks. However, I cant see them all falling that far, nor do I see Seattle drafting two WR’s–not with the money they just signed Kearse to, and guys like K Smith and Kasen Williams looking to build on last year.

          I’d like to see the TE Vannett in there somewhere. We’re far more likely to draft an all-around TE with hands who can block than two more WR’s. Just my two cents.

          Hoever, I like that Cajuste kid, and I think its a good bet Seattle is highly interested in Daryl Worley.

          You really think Joe Dahl falls that far? Wouldnt hurt my feelings any to pick him up that far down the board, I just dont think he goes after Worley…

          • dawgma says:

            This is from a simulation. There are multiple boards that drive the simulations so different sets of players and scenarios are possible. If you thought Dahl there was crazy, one of the systems had Shon Coleman scored as an UDFA (ranked like 275 overall).

            I don;t see them taking 2 WR either, that just happened to be the oddity that came out in this sim. I also don’t think they’ll skip WR; they only have Lockett and Kearse under contract next year who ever ever produced a damn thing, and I think there’s some chance Baldwin wants to play in a high volume passing game and prove he can be a top-tier WR.

  30. Steele says:

    Rob, I’m very glad to see this analysis, and it is absolutely spot on. The short area explosiveness is perhaps more important than the rest. The guys who can win fights in a phone booth.

    Whitehair/McGovern/Haeg/Boehm. They are the type that this line needs. I’d take them over the Ifedi/Spriggs model.

    • Rob Staton says:

      Ifeid’s size, frame, length, explosion (tested well in the jumps) likely adds him to the mix.

      But the quartet mentioned here really have to be considered. Their style, agility and explosion seemingly suit what the Hawks need on their O-line.

  31. Steele says:

    In terms of a top center, is Nick Martin still a consideration?

  32. Steele says:

    Potroast Knighton is making the FA rounds. He would likely cost somewhere in the $5m range. I do not think Siliga is enough of an answer.

  33. CHawk Talker Eric says:

    @TrevorSikkema: Watching some Jared Goff tape again just because. Two games in, Lawler made some of his throws look better than they are. Helped Goff a lot.

    Lawler would look good working the scramble drill with RW.

  34. Jake says:

    Just some food for thought – one of the new big boards for fanspeak’s draft simulator has Ifedi and McGovern ranked as the 19th and 32nd best overall prospects, respectively.

  35. RWIII says:

    Question for Rob: The Hawks have 4 picks in the first three rounds. Lets say the Hawks take two offensive lineman. A pass rusher and Tyler Ervin with their first four picks. What are the chances of their still being a run stuffing DT in the 4th round? The Hawks pick in the 4th round is 124.

  36. Madmark says:

    I’m just doing a mad rambling about some thoughts about OL players since we know its a need. My 1st thought is 2011 draft because we took 2 of them with our 1st 2 picks. If you look closer at that draft you’ll see it actually draft 6 defensive players and only 3 offensive ones. In this draft we have a very solid defense built already unlike 2011. I could see this draft actually go in the other direction to setup Wilson for success going forward. I’m not against 6 offense and 3 defensive picks this year. I made a list of players we have on roster now going forward.
    Garry Gillian 6’5″ 306lbs. for all purposes it looks like he’s the starting LT but they been working this for 2 years now and its time to cement him in his position going forward.
    Mark Glowinski 6’4″ 310lbs. I already have this guy penned in to RG. Looked good last year against the Cardinal’s
    Patrick Lewis 6’1″ 311lbs. He’s not what Seattle wants as we saw last year but he knows the scheme and is perfect this year for competition. Would like to see him in the backup role and the center of the future starting.
    Drew Nowak 6″3″ 292lbs. I hear he competing for LS. I don’t have the feeling he’s our future center.
    Terry Poole 6’5″ 323lbs really raw but way more athletic than Carpenter was. He got a year under his belt can he take the RT or LG spot this year because he has the size and athletic ability Seattle likes in those positions. This is the guy I will be watching at spring training. Wouldn’t that be unique if the 2 OL draft picks last year start RG and RT.
    J’marcus Webb 6’7″ 335lbs. This guy is veteran competition for LG or RT it could be a break out year playing in a new place.
    Bradley Sowell 6’7″ 309lbs. He backup left tackle would be my guess if he even makes it.
    Kristjan Sokoli 6’5″ 302lbs. Your guess is as good as mine.
    Will Pericak 6’3″ 300lbs. He’s a center brought in as camp body I think.
    Kona Schwenke 6’4″285lbs. It says he’s a tackle but he played DL at Notre Dame camp body.
    That’s what we got on the roster right now and it’s not really as bad as it could be as far as I’m concerned. So I got GG,Webb,Lewis,Glow,Poole. Now looking forward at this draft how do I maximize my upgrading this line not just with starters but also with the backups.
    I really watched OL this year in college because of what was going on at the beginning of the season for Seattle. My pick for LT spot was Jake Conklin but he’s not going to be there for us to pick and you know that cause we don’t even talk about him on the site. Was looking at Rees Odhiambo for LG spot. He actually a really gifted athlete but has problems staying healthy. That’s the kick about this guy that if he falls to end of the 5th or 6th round he would definitely be a steal if he can stay healthy.
    Joe Dahl is one of my favorites. Go cougs. hehe. This guys has that country Boy grit, tough, and extremely football smarts. He a perfect convertion to center. He already called the line sets in college as the left tackle.
    Germain Ifedi He does have potential to be a monster but I would feel I was reaching at 26.
    Connor McGovern this guy more a Mitch Morse type than a Justin Britt. If he could take the center spot could be a win but I not sure about conversions but it’s not a secret anymore with others teams doing it. I think this guy can start wherever they want him to start. I saw him as a Stud G.
    Evan Boehm this guy was the cement of that Mizzio line has leadership and toughness in spades unfortunately his body shape doesn’t fit Seattle’s mold. Short Legs reduces his range as does short arms. He understands shotgun snap and actually moves pretty good but pro snap sets will show his weakness.
    Joe Haeg Some reason this seams like a Seahawk pick. This guy has so much potential and Seattle I think would give him his year of learning and adjusting. I just hope they start him early on the position want him for a few years. Cable just got to have a corn field Irish cowboy that wrestles.
    Nila Kasitati I had this guy penned for RG where he starting again but he just never seem to show up but still a UDFA to bring to camp
    Nick Martin he will do pretty good but I just don’t think he’s athletic enough for what they want.
    well I’m done rambling

  37. gary says:

    How about matt hegarty from the Ducks as a possible UDFA or 6th/7th round guy?