Thursday notes: The plan for Finley & top five for #32

March 13th, 2014 | Written by Rob Staton

Jermichael Finley appears set to join the Seahawks

Seattle getting creative in the passing game?

I’m fascinated by the interest in Jermichael Finley. He was straight on a plane to Seattle and reports are suggesting a deal is close.

If he does indeed agree terms with the Seahawks, I have two thoughts:

1) Moving on from Miller

If the Seahawks choose to cut Zach Miller and sign Finley, we’ll see a different offense in 2014.

Miller has been used predominantly as a blocker. His role as a receiver has been fiercely limited in Seattle, mostly due to injuries on the offensive line (2011 & 2013) or the fact they’re breaking in a rookie quarterback (2012).

We never saw the kind of production he flashed in Oakland.

But at the same time, he’s also a marginal athlete by modern NFL standards.

He can’t run.

We saw that in week 13 against the Saints, when a wide open Miller bumbled his way into the red zone on a broken coverage.

That should’ve been a touchdown.

If they’re swapping blocking ability for a bigger playmaker, that’s a fairly significant move for a team that wants to run the ball first and foremost. Especially considering they’ll be breaking in a new right tackle following Breno Giacomini’s departure to New York.

Finley’s a downfield runner, a seam-buster who finds mismatches and makes plays.

He aint no blocker.

Anthony McCoy and Luke Willson are also more receiver than blocker.

Using three tight ends like Finley, McCoy and Willson would suggest the Seahawks are planning to make the position more of a focal point in the passing game.

But it also takes away some of the protection benefit you get from a guy like Miller.

You’d have to compensate for that somehow, especially when you’re breaking in a new tackle.

2) Turning Finley into a receiver

Could they sign him to act as a big receiver?

By that I don’t mean lining up outside, running down the sideline and trying to win the red line.

I mean lining up in the slot, ala Jimmy Graham.

New Orleans don’t ask Graham to block much — because he can’t.

He’s a terrible blocker.

Instead he runs routes from the inside and finds mismatches with his unique size and speed.

There’s nothing really stopping the Seahawks bringing in Finely on a deal worth around $2.5m and essentially using him as a slot receiver.

You can limit his snaps. You use McCoy and Willson as your tight ends (or even Miller if he’s kept).

It’s not a crazy idea. It’d take away some of the burden of losing Golden Tate and it’d give the Seahawks the big target over the middle they currently lack.

***UPDATE***

Earl Thomas extension forthcoming?

Why did the Seahawks cut Chris Clemons this week?

Why not part ways when they cut Red Bryant and Sidney Rice?

Was it just insurance in case they lost Michael Bennett to Chicago?

Or is there something else behind the timing of the move?

They didn’t bring in another defensive lineman after re-signing Tony McDaniel. They haven’t made any move yet that would require an extra $7.5m in space.

Maybe it’s time to focus on Earl Thomas’ inevitable new contract?

Along with keeping Bennett, that had to be the top priority this off-season.

It’s a foregone conclusion Thomas gets an extension at some point this year.

Perhaps we’re getting closer to the day where that’s announced?

Seahawks free agency status check

Jason Hatcher, who visited Seattle at the start of free agency, is signing with the Redskins according to Ian Rapoport.

There’s no way the Seahawks could match the $27.5m Washington are offering. That’s Michael Bennett money.

Rapoport is also hinting at a possible return to Seattle for Sidney Rice:

Even if Rice re-signs, I’d expect receiver to be an early draft target. He’s coming off an ACL injury and has been dogged by injuries throughout his career. It’d surely only be a short term, value move.

This receiver class is too good not to tap into in round one or two. Adding Rice would take some pressure off a rookie to have an instant impact, given how notoriously difficult the position is for a year-one player.

Walter Thurmond is visiting the 49ers after making a trip to Jacksonville.

The Seahawks have re-signed quarterback Tarvaris Jackson, while Chris Clemons has now completed his deal with the Jaguars.

Of the remaining free agents available, here are three to keep an eye on:

Charles Brown (T) — former New Orleans blocker, played for Pete Carroll at USC. Could’ve been a Seahawks pick in 2010 had Eric Berry lasted until #6. He’s a possible depth pick at tackle.

O’Brien Schofield (DE) — after his deal with the Giants was vetoed, could he return to Seattle at a discount price?

Jared Allen (DE) — a truly bizarre free agency for Allen so far. But if he’s willing to play for a ring, Seattle still makes so much sense.

Bronco blunders

The biggest rivalry in football right now is Seattle vs San Francisco.

Yeah, there’s a lot of angst between the teams. There’s some great storylines at play.

But you know what makes it really fascinating?

These are the two best teams in the NFL.

They are built almost identically. Strength, speed, depth. Run the ball. Big plays. Great defense. Investing in young talent. Solid, inspired coaching.

And most of all they have zero dependence on one single aspect of the game. They’ll beat you with offense, defense or even special teams.

It didn’t matter who Seattle played from the AFC in the Super Bowl. The result would’ve been the same.

And I imagine the 49ers would’ve served up a similar beating too.

The AFC is a finesse league, driven by ageing pocket passers like Peyton Manning and Tom Brady.

The NFC is fast becoming a brutal kill or be killed endurance test. All thanks to Seattle and San Francisco.

But on top of that they have supreme balance.

The Broncos’ answer to getting destroyed in the Super Bowl is to sign more big names in free agency.

Some people will argue the additions of Aqib Talib, T.J. Ward and Demarcus Ware look pretty good.

And yet here’s the likely reality — had all three been playing for Denver in the Super Bowl, the score would’ve still been 43-8.

If these teams want to compete with the NFC’s best, they need to look into what they do well.

Denver should be investing in youth, searching for greater balance and getting tougher up front.

Not throwing money at a 28-year-old cornerback who’s constantly banged up, a safety Cleveland were happy to replace with Donte Whitner and a soon-to-be 32-year-old pass rusher who just looks way past his best (and also picks up little nagging injuries).

Heck, they’d have been better off saving money and going after some of Seattle’s free agents — Clinton McDonald, Walter Thurmond, Red Bryant.

Get some toughness in there.

The Seahawks and 49ers have nothing to fear in the AFC because the ‘power’ teams like Denver are not adapting.

They’re simply throwing good money at big names, when really they should be looking at the real reasons they were embarrassed in the Super Bowl.

They’re too reliant on a passing offense and they aren’t tough enough.

It certainly wasn’t because of a lack of expensive, ageing stars.

One to monitor

If the Seahawks go searching for defensive line depth in the draft, Oregon’s Taylor Hart is one to keep an eye on.

He’s 6-6 and +280lbs. His arms are a shade under 33 inches long.

Physically he’s pretty Seahawky. And he has the potential to get back up to 290lbs and retain most of that 4.7 speed.

Five players who would make sense at #32

Just my take in reaction to the first three days of free agency.

This is based on who should be available. Although I’m bending the rules with #1 — I just wanted to get him on the list.

#1 Odell Beckham Jr (WR, LSU)
He has similar traits to Golden Tate. Plays above his size, very competitive in the air and high points the football superbly. He’s a solid return man and a very good athlete. He screams ‘Seahawks’, even if they might be looking for a bigger receiver ideally.

#2 Joel Bitonio (T/G, Nevada)
Comparable athlete to the top tackles in this class (Robinson, Matthews, Lewan). Looks like a Logan Mankins clone. Capable of playing guard or tackle at the next level. Insanely underrated.

#3 Martavis Bryant (WR, Clemson)
The Seahawks are prepared to roll the dice on unique athleticism. Bryant has the complete package of size, speed and the athletic qualities they love. He’s a big play waiting to happen. He’s a 4.4 runner at 6-4, 211lbs.

#4 Morgan Moses (T, Virginia)
Big, long tackle with 6-6 height and 35 3/8 inch arms. Just a really solid football player and someone they might be willing to invest in to replace Breno Giacomini.

#5 Brandon Coleman (WR, Rutgers)
Some people love it when I highlight Coleman, others hate it. At the end of the day, he’s running a 4.5 at 6-6 and 225lbs. At the combine he looked in fantastic shape. There just aren’t many people on Earth like Brandon Coleman.

By the way, don’t get our hopes up Charley…

As much as I’d love Casserly to be right, Aaron Donald should be a top-15 pick.

179 Responses to “Thursday notes: The plan for Finley & top five for #32”

  1. HopScotch says:

    Oh man, I never considered turning Finley into a receiver as an option. I would flip out if Seattle pursued that route and held onto Miller.

    • bigDhawk says:

      The title is just semantics. Call him whatever you want, but the idea is to to utilize his physical attributes as a pass receiver off the LOS. We can draft a blocking TE if acquiring Finley means Miller’s exit. If that results in four players on the roster with the title ‘TE’, then so be it. I love the idea because it reduces the pressure to reach for an actual big WR in the draft.

      • CC says:

        Or they can line up an extra lineman like they did the end of the season. Then you just adjust what you need for a blocker.

  2. kevin mullen says:

    If Donald and Coleman are available at #32, I’d be damned to pass on Donald. As much as I want Coleman in the fold, only an interior presence like Donald is too good to pass up. With 3 guys on our DLine that’s moved on, getting another talent like Donald would take precedence over a tall WR like Coleman. I’d only pick Benjamin over Donald at this moment.

    • Rob Staton says:

      If Donald’s there at #32, it’s a no brainer. Unfortunately there’s next to no chance he’ll last that long.

      • kevin mullen says:

        Off the top of your head, how many teams do you realistically eyeing Donald in first round? Given how FA has played out. Should we just focus on Melton next week?

        • Cade says:

          Why focus on Melton?

          We have plenty of DT guys.. only missing depth on the DL at the LEO position, right?

          • kevin mullen says:

            I would argue the opposite, I feel we have enough guys to rush the passer, even allow Irvin a couple snaps back in that position should we need him. I think Melton could help us and his stock next year if he were to take a 1yr deal.

        • Rob Staton says:

          For Donald I’d say if he gets passed NYG, STL, CHI, DAL — it’d be an upset. He’s the complete package. Massive production, great attitude, amazing tape, brilliant combine performance.

          I think Melton looks destined to join Minnesota. I think Seattle will probably pad out some depth and maybe roll with their guys on the DL. Maybe consider Allen or Peppers depending on cost.

          • Robert says:

            But “too short” and kinda light on 31 teams’ prototype chart. If he makes it to 20+, I bet JS picks up the phone and starts speed dialing!

            • Robert says:

              Same with Kelvin Benjamin. Two players I think we value very highly for their unique skills to create match up nightmares…

            • Rob Staton says:

              The only knock anyone can make is he’s 6-0 instead of 6-2. I’m not sure teams are going to allow him to drop, given everything else about his game is elite, for the sake of two inches in height.

              • Robert says:

                Agreed. I was speculating hopefully that he might drop because so many teams are over-committed to their ideal prototype charts. PCJS can plainly see that a big part of his success is gaining leverage by getting underneath tall blockers. So 6’0 is an advantage for him…I doubt he drops within our range. But I know he is very high on our board if he does…

      • Cameron says:

        Every year there are guys you say have no chance of lasting that end up doing just that. I remember one year I asked you about Melvin Ingraham in the early 2nd round. You said ‘No way Jose”. Ok. I’m going to start keeping track of these pronouncements :)

        • Rob Staton says:

          Wasn’t he the #18 pick in the draft that year?

          • Cameron says:

            I got my edge rushers mixed up… it was another guy from the same draft – Courtney Upshaw. You mocked him to us in your last mock @ #12… went early 2nd round.

            I’m just busting your chops anyways. You more than most sports writers are quick to point out when you’re wrong about a guy.

            • Rob Staton says:

              I whiffed on the Upshaw projection for sure.

            • Robert says:

              I was pretty blown away when Rob nailed Christine Michael last year! I wish we could trade Turbin for a mid rounder. Or maybe throw him in with a pick and vending machine treats to move up a bit if Donald or Benjamin start to fall towards #32…

      • bigDhawk says:

        Never underestimate the stupidity of teams that are not championship organizations. See Oakland. We know what it’s like to root for that kind of team.

  3. Cameron says:

    Can’t say I blame the Broncos for the moves they’ve made in Free Agency. They are clearly in their Super Bowl window, and that window is closing fast. On paper they are much better on defense, but can you count on those guys to make it through the season? Not sure. Aliq Talib has played 1 and 1/2 seasons worth of games the last 3 years. So yeah, they’re gambling.

    If everyone stays healthy they should be favored to lose the Super Bowl.

    • Rob Staton says:

      They’d have been better off giving $10m to Michael Bennett for three years than Demarcus Ware.

      Just my take on that one.

      Elway loves big names a little too much.

      • bigDhawk says:

        Totally agree about Denver’s signings. They just added three more Champ Baileys on defense. Ware is broken. He has a bad back which is not a good thing for his position.

        • Arias says:

          I wouldn’t call Talib a ‘champ bailey’. When he’s playing he’s a force, unlike Champ who appeared too often like a carcass of his former self.

          • Jake says:

            They lost/cut 66% of their CB crew (DRC and Champ) and only signed Aqib Talib. So they have Talib at CB1. CB2, and CB3 are non-existent. Chris Harris and Quinton Jammer are also Free Agents and unsigned. Unless you like Kayvon Webster or Jerome Murphy to bust out in year 3 or 4, they got absolutely nothing opposite Talib. Their CB group has declined overall, not improved. At safetey, Ward is an upgrade over both Adams and Ihenacho and if Moore comes back healthy they’re pretty good in the back end though neither Ward or Moore are great deep 1/3 type guys. Ware will help rush the passer, but he is a poor run defender. He will take over for Phillips who was actually a decent run defender, they also have yet to re-sign Ayers. I don’t think their defense has improved because the improvement at safety is counterbalanced by the decline in depth at cornerback and defensive end. The run defense is now a MAJOR question mark. I have no idea why people miss the losses (DRC & Champ, Ayers & Phillips) but count the gains (Talib & Ware) and call it #WINNING

      • dave crockett says:

        This.

        They have yet to be in on a “young” star in the making type, like Bennett and Thurmond, who might be around in the post-Peyton era. Frankly, I don’t get how they gave Ware and Talib all that money in a semi-deep corner market while seemingly never even considering re-signing Eric Decker.

        If their defense gets marginally better than mediocre while their offense goes from historically good to “garden variety elite” they might not make it back to the AFC title game.

        • Arias says:

          Like Earl said, it’s a copycat league.

          Even though Denver’s attempt to build a championship defense in Seattle’s mode might appear to us like farce, they’re spending big money on the parts that have been our strengths.

      • rrsquid says:

        Maybe he’s trying to start the AARP (American Association of Retired Persons) of football franchises. Americans will get it.

      • Robert says:

        So does the press. Elway will be lauded as a genius. While PCJS will continue to maintain their core in FA and kill it in the Draft, with prospects that mostly bear fruit later. No flashy awards unless you make headliner moves that doom your team in 3 years…Congratulations!

        • monkey says:

          Nothing to add to that comment, just thought “No flashy awards unless you make headliner moves that doom your team in 3 years…Congratulations!” was PERFECT.
          Great post great line.

  4. Sam Jaffe says:

    Good list at the end. There’s a high probability that someone from that group will be the Seahawks pick. The more we learn about the warts of these players, it feels inevitable that Bryant will be the guy.

    • Rob Staton says:

      Bryant’s a special athlete.

      It all comes down to the character issues. If Seattle feels comfortable there, he’s in play. They’ll do their homework.

      • YDB says:

        I would be shocked if PCJS picked MB at #32.

        He pretty much only runs 9′s and has shown little ability to run anything else. His footwork is very messy and plodding. His stem is very inconsistent…especially for a guy that only runs a single route. He doesn’t drop his hips well at all, and that leads to him losing speed on his fakes or in the rare case that he makes a break. His speed forces most CB’s into off coverage, but when facing press, he can be rerouted easily due to his slight frame and inability to use his hands effectively.

        What he is a huge project with dynamic potential. However, it will take a lot of time invested in him if he is to make a difference on the field.

        At this point in time, there doesn’t look like there is anything he could bring to the team that Lockette doesn’t already do, and RL plays special teams. Of course, he does bring potential whereas Lockette is pretty much topped out.

        I could see him at #64 or trading back to the 3rd, but the #32pick should presumably be able to step right in and contribute.

        • Rob Staton says:

          In fairness we could list a lot of things Bruce Irvin didn’t do particularly well at WVU, but they drafted him because he was just such an incredible athlete (although PC’s background with Bruce was a significant factor).

          Not saying you don’t make valid points (you absolutely do), but he wouldn’t be the first speedy receiver asked to run those routes over and over again in a straight forward basic college scheme. Things like hip work can be coached. There aren’t many 6-4, 211lbs guys who run a 4.4 and jump 39 inches, though.

          • YDB says:

            Hip flexibility and quickness are among the hardest attributes to develop for WR’s. That is a reason it is a focal point many scouts bring up when evaluating prospects. Almost always, you either got it, or you don’t.

            The reason that is important, is because were he to be drafted by the Seahawks, he would not be asked to perform a basic function within a “college scheme”. Bevell’s deep attack hybrid of the WCO demands receivers run a multitude of routes against some of the most elite athletes on the planet. If they are unable to perform this task for any reason, they will not see the field (witnessed during Tate’s early career).

            His workout numbers do make him a very intriguing developemental prospect, but #32 seems to early to me to select him.

            • RadMan says:

              MB looks a lot like Justin Hunter, to me. Tall, fast, lean, jumper, a bit raw.

              • Rob Staton says:

                I think he’s more explosive than Hunter. Bit bigger too in the frame (not much though, both lean).

                • RadMan says:

                  Yeah they’re not twins. But their combine measurables are pretty similar. Hunter had a better 40 time, and is a better broad jumper by a foot. Bryant looks a bit quicker in the shuttle. MB is about 10 lbs heavier but like you said, both lean/ sidney rice like body types.

        • Cameron says:

          Hell, if I had MB I’d send him mostly on seam and post routes too. 6’5 and runs a 4.34? Yes, please. That other stuff I don’t care that much about. He’s a bigger receiver. Most big receivers aren’t that crisp in and out of their cuts. We’re not expecting Calvin Johnson here.

          We need a big bodied receiver who can win contested balls. MB can do that. The fact that he’s blazing fast is just a bonus. We talk about Brandon Coleman being a rare blend of size and speed. MB is a bigger freak, in my estimation.

          https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YvjYdHW55sE

          These are MB highlights (and lowlights) vs NC State. I see plenty of route variation here. Bubble screens, shallow cross, deep out, fade, post bach shoulder, etc. The last touchdown catch he makes at the 2:13 mark should get everyone’s attention.

          Side note: Boyd is terrible? Will he even be drafted?

          • Kyle N says:

            Every time I watch tape on MB (or Watkins) I can never get over how bad bad Boyd looks. There are so many examples of him under throwing MB It actually makes it hard to evaluate him (Yes same thing is absolutely true with Coleman)

          • YDB says:

            Ricardo Lockette faster and nearly as big as Bryant, and the reason he is buried on the depth chart mostly because of the “other stuff [you] don’t care that much about.”

            There is no question that having a big WR would help Seattle improve on its pitiful redzone performance from last season, and MB fits the profile. However, if he is unable to very quickly run effecient and effective routes, then CB’s on the NFL level will just jam him out of his fade and neutralize his best weapon.

            • Cameron says:

              MB has 2 inches on Rockette, that’s not insignificant.

              MB is bigger and much more physical than Lockette, in my estimation. Also Lockette was an UDFA where as MB is a bonafide rd2-3 talent.

              • YDB says:

                No way on Earth is MB more physical than Lockette. Not at all.

                I really am not concerned about Lockette being a UDFA or when Bryant is expected to be drafted. The only difference that would make at the VMAC would be in their paycheck. The tape shows that Bryant has some of the same holes in his game that make Lockette a depth/special teams player on this squad.

                As I’ve already said, I do like his size/speed combination. Further, his youth and (seeming) competitiveness make him an intriguing prospect, but drafting him would be a developmental pick to hopefully pay out in the future. Above I mentioned that I liked him better at #64 or trading back in the 3rd, so you and I agree on that. I just think that #32 would be a high price to pay for such a huge project.

                • Beanhawk says:

                  Let it be known that this whole discussion on Bryant here is exactly why I love coming to this site. Well-researched, well-debated, and reasoned insight. Posters who highlight points of commonality that only serve to enrich those moments of difference.

                  Thank you to Rob, YDB, and all posters in this mini-thread.

                  • Grant says:

                    i am joining this mini thread in a belated attempt to soak in the praise. Personally, I’d pass on Bryant in the first round. if you have to go WR at #32, give me Coleman (the guy with the tools but the terrible passing offense) or else Jarvis Landry, et al.

                    Otherwise, I really wouldn’t mind going guard or tackle and looking at some of the WRs in the second round that are more risk reward (Matthews, Adams, Montcrief). And although you discount the possibility, I think there is a good chance #32 is a trade up position for some teams in the top 5 of round 2. Shit is going to be wacky this year.

  5. kigenzun says:

    I’ve been thinking Finley is the answer for creating mismatches in the Red Zone for a while now. Its an excellent idea, to make him our BIG target ala BMW. I can’t remember where I saw a youtube interview video or something during his rehab, when he said he might like to play for the Seahawks. I just wasn’t sure he would clear medically/heal up so fast. But he’s here, so let’s sign him up. As a #4 receiver.

    Basically just to have him run slants inside the 5 with that size would be worth the price. Kinda like playing the Joseph ‘All he does is catch Touchdowns’ Fauria role. For example, like that touchdown Jimmay scored the night we embarrassed the Saints on MNF. It was just too tough to guard him as a BIG slot receiver on a 4 yard slant. Jermichael can do that, and much more.

    It also allows us to draft Bitonio to stabilize the OLine first, and then wait and see who’s still there at #64. Perhaps the WR need would be reduced and we could consider a LEO type pass rusher like Kareem Martin from North Carolina in the 2nd round.

    • Rob Staton says:

      Any situation that increases the opportunity to draft Joel Bitonio sounds good to me.

      Although I’ll say this — whatever happens between now and May — I’d be disappointed to come out of the first two days of this draft without a receiver. The class is so good. It’d feel like a missed opportunity not to tap into this group — unless there’s a ridiculous rush that hammers the value at #32 and #64.

      • bigDhawk says:

        For me Bitonio is not freakishly good enough to take at 32 just to play RT or LG, and even less so because those happen to be a current need. He would be a solid NFL starter at either position, but it’s the same type of pick the Cowboys made last year with Frederick and their need at C. They could have had Frederick in the second round or later, and Bitonio reasonably might be there for us at 64. I understand reaching for players with the potential to be freaky like Irvin, but I don’t see that in a Mankins-esque Bitonio. Better to use that pick on a player that definitely won’t be there for us at 64 like OBJ or a player that might slide to us at a position not of need, like S, CB, LB, QB, etc. Someone always slides.

        • DavidinBellingham says:

          I wonder if Bitonio is available at 32, much less 64. I think he is the fourth best OL option in the draft.

          • Jake says:

            Bitonio would be an excellent pick at #32 if he’s there. I don’t say this often, but I he seems like a “can’t miss” prospect. You don’t find talent like him at #32 usually, and I think its the depth at WR and QB that makes it happen. It helped that some of the CBs really showed out at the combine to confirm their place in the 1st round. Bitonio is viewed as a tier 2 lineman, so that would normally drop him into the low 20′s, but this draft has a lot of first round talent that’s pushing the tier 2 linemen into the early/mid 2nd. Perfect time to win the Super Bowl… We’ll get a low-20′s prospect at 32!

            • Rob Staton says:

              Agreed. He’s a top-20 guy for me.

            • LantermanC says:

              Agreed. If he were coming out of OSU or USC, he’d be in everyone’s first round. Just because he wasn’t a star recruit out of HS, shouldn’t mean you rank him 2 rounds lower. Now that we’ve seemed to shore up every part of our team through FA, we again are in the position to draft BPA and I think Bitonio is probably that prospect, high upside, versatility on the offensive line, etc.

          • Rob Staton says:

            Agreed. He might be off the board by #32.

            • Madmark says:

              I blame Bitinio for and outstanding combine and you rob after you did an article with someone on field gulls. In the next couple of days he climb into the top 5 Olineman in the draft. I’m so tired of reading that LG and RT aren’t worth 1st rd draft pick. Avril rushes the right side and cause a lot of problems from teams.

            • Robert says:

              Rob and everyone that wants to weigh in: How do you think PCJS would rank the following players IF (hypothetically not likely) they were all available at #32?
              Bitonio
              Tuitt
              Hageman
              Benjamin
              Can you see a possible move up a couple picks if the right player is still on the board at +25ish?

              • Rob Staton says:

                Bitonio
                Benjamin
                Hageman
                Tuitt

                IMO.

                And moving up would depend on the cost. They don’t have loads of picks, and need to find depth later on.

        • Emperor_MA says:

          So you wouldn’t want a guy (if Bitonio is indeed “Mankins-esque,” as you so eloquently put it) at #32 who ends up being the very best player at his position for a decade and will leave the NFL with a very serious Hall of Fame-consideration career?

          I’d be ecstatic to get someone the quality of Logan Mankins at #32.

          • bigDhawk says:

            If I’m drafting an interior lineman at 32 based significantly on roster need, like this Bitonio pick seems to be, he better be Hutch or Larry Allen, not Logan Mankins. Otherwise I’d like to see us use the pick on a real potential playmaker regardless of position like OBJ, Dennard, Shazier, Hageman, Cooks, Bryant, etc who might also be there at 32. We’re trying t repeat as SB champs, not just plug holes. We have Bowie, Bailey, and Hauptman already on the roster who can plug holes.

  6. matt509 says:

    If Donald is there at 32 I don’t know what I’ll do. Maybe cry. Not sure. I wouldn’t care what happened the rest of the draft.

    • Rob Staton says:

      I’d get the champagne out.

      • dave crockett says:

        Unlikely, but not THAT far-fetched either. If we narrow the scope to the 4-3 teams, I don’t care what anyone says publicly some of them won’t consider a smallish 3-technique. You get one or two of the teams that will to trade back…

        It could happen ;)

        • Alex says:

          Despite all the talk about players being bigger, faster, and stronger (hint: advancement in strength and conditioning), the best 3 techs still play at around 280 (same as the 70s/80s), which is considered “small”. Look at the best 3 techs in the last few years- Henry Melton, Jason Hatcher, Geno Atkins- are all in the 280-290 range. Players at that size just seem to possess the burst and speed to overwhelm opposing guards. If a DT gets any larger, they will suffer from size and need to be really, really good at disengaging blocks (e.g. Ndamkung Suh) or incredibly strong (Kevin Williams).

        • Kip Earlywine says:

          Donald will probably be a situational rusher. But Aldon Smith and Von Miller were supposed to be situational guys too and they went very early and turned into home run picks. Tavon Austin was a situational guy last year who went really high. Bruce Irvin was situational.

          Teams are caring less and less about snap count and more about talent the last few years. I would not be shocked if Donald went top ten. Wouldn’t call it a bad pick either. Dude’s a stud.

  7. Christian says:

    Hi Rob, I haven’t had a chance to check out TE’s in the draft yet. Who do you see as the best blocking TE’s available?

    • Rob Staton says:

      I think nearly every tight end entering the league has to work on blocking. Very few guys now are pure blockers in college, who just translate. In terms of pure potential as a blocker, Troy Niklas is up there because of his size. C.J. Fiedorowicz also has potential there. Amaro and ASJ also have the potential to work into rounded TE’s.

  8. Stuart says:

    I would be happy to trade next years #1 and change to move into early round #2 to select Bitonio.

    #32-Donald

    #40 Bitonio

    #64 WR

    Donald wont be available at #32. J/S wont trade next years #1 and likely the WR’s we covet most will long gone by #64. A guy can dream though…

    • Jim Q says:

      IMO: The Seahawks should try to trade down (if Donald, OBJ, Benjamin, etc. aren’t available). For example: an equitable trade with the NY Jets could net #49 & #81 to go along with the #64. I see the major needs that could be addressed in the first 3 rounds as WR, OL & DL, not necessarily in that order. Below are MOST of the players that have been talked about for the Seahawks here and in other Seattle blogs & websites. The current overall draft rankings shown are from todays nfldraftscout.com. Obviously, these rankings CAN and WILL change as the draft approaches. I think the Seahawks could get 3 really good players from this list that addresses many needs of the team. (*** = my personal favorites.)

      ***DT-Stephon Tuitt, currently #40 overall, looks Seahawky to me, early Rd-2?
      DE-Scott Crichton, currently #43 overall, looks Seahawky to me, early Rd-2?
      ***DE-Trent Murphy, currently #44 overall, looks Seahawky to me, early Rd-2?
      ***DE-Kareem Martin, currently #52 overall, looks very Seahawky to me, late Rd-2?
      DT-Dominique Easley, currently #57 overall
      ***DE/LEO-Marcus Smith, currently #70 overall, looks like a possible LEO, late Rd-2?
      DT-Kelcy Quarles, currently #72 overall
      DT-Anthony Johnson, currently #95 overall
      DE-Brent Urban, currently #165 overall

      ***OT-Morgan Moses, currently #47 overall, looks darn Seahawky to me, early Rd-2?
      OG-Gabe Jackson, currently #50 overall
      OT-Antonio Richardson, currently #56 overall
      ***OG/OT-Brandon Thomas currently #69 overall, he really can play RT, (fast riser) Rd-2?
      ***OT-Billy Turner, currently #79 overall, looks nasty to me, needs coaching, Rd-2?
      ***OT/OG-Joel Bitonio, currently #96 overall, looks like a great OL fit to me, Rd-2?

      ***WR-Davante Adams, currently #46 overall, very productive, Rd-2?
      WR-Jordan Matthews, currently #58 overall
      WR-Donte Moncrief, currently #67 overall
      WR-Jarvis Landry, currently #76 overall
      ***WR-Martavis Bryant, currently #81 overall, could develop, great combine, Rd-3?
      ***WR-Jared Abbrederis, currently #110 overall, IMO-replacement for Tate, Rd-3/4?
      ***WR-Brandon Coleman, currently #147 overall, If there Rd-4, the Seahawks need to jump.
      WR=Cody Latimer, currently #166 overall,
      ***WR-Jeff Janis, currently #192 overall, “White Lightning” developmental, great #’s, Rd-5?

      My examples:
      Pick Rd-2, #49: DT-Stephon Tuitt //or// OT-Morgan Moses,
      Pick Rd-2, #64: OT-Joel Bitonio //or// DE/LEO- Marcus Smith (if Moses is picked)
      Pick Rd-3, #81: WR-Jared Abbrederis, //or// WR-Jarvis Landry (Abbrederis = best route runner in draft?) –>{in addition to: WR-Jeff Janis //or// WR-Brandon Coleman in Rd-4 or 5}

      • Robert says:

        Tuitt would have been top 15 with previous year’s numbers. Could be a high value pick at #32. I doubt he lasts much longer. Could be our long term solution at 3T with time to develop behind McDaniels.

    • Robert says:

      Good. I don’t think he is the right guy for us. He’s too slow and does not block.PC doesn’t want to telegraph pass with a one dimensional TE.

  9. CC says:

    I would have liked Finley – it would have changed up the offense. I’m happy about Bennett, but with all the loses, I kind of want them to sign someone … and not Sidney Rice.

    • Miles says:

      Just because he left without signing doesn’t mean it won’t happen. It’s common for players to hold out for more money only to come to terms that they aren’t going to get a high number , and sign a reasonable contract. With that neck, the most Finley will get is $2.5m.

      • Jake says:

        My understanding is that Finley’s medical issues are holding that up. I think the Hawks will sign him if he checks out medically. I’d love to sign Rice to a small deal, WHEN HEALTHY he is a #1 receiver. I know he’s rarely healthy, but in a rotation with Kearse maybe he can stay healthy and make some plays when we need them. There isn’t a better player available at WR and the price tag is important to remember since the re-signings for the LOB should be the priority anyway.

  10. Colin says:

    Charley Casserly is the Greg Cosell equivalent of former front office people: Guys hang on his EVERY word and yet everyday that goes by he reeks of a man who the game has gone by. A bit overrated.

  11. Vin says:

    Here’s a question for Rob, and everyone else for that matter: Is it possible that the hawks see a need to change or alter the offensive ID? It’s not like JF is a younger, cheaper Miller, and then you look at Christine Michael and I don’t see the next Beast Mode. And then you add in that our Oline never really gelled all year and it just seems that change of sorts is needed. We don’t have a RT, yet, and we don’t know who the LG is, so the Oline has to learn and grow and familiarize themselves with one another, again. So to compensate for the growing pains, is it possible that the Offense will rely on RW and the receivers more until the Oline gels and opens up holes for Lynch, Turbin, Michael? Cutting miller and signing JF doesn’t sit well with me because of the state of our Oline. If Giacomini stayed and we were certain that Carp was the LG of the present and future then I could at least trust in that continuity. But as it stands now, I like having Miller in as a 6th blocker because of the state of the Oline…..even if it’s a bit expensive. Go Hawks!

    • Rob Staton says:

      I think we’ll see the same commitment to the run (that’s PC bread and butter right there) but I think we’ll also some adjustment to how they operate within that philosophy. Instead of Lynch as a bell cow, I think we’ll see multiple runners who are physical but also great athletes (what PC had at USC). I think we’ll see a true, big receiver added at some point.

      • CC says:

        I expect that RW will keep getting better so each year I would expect the offense to shift a bit more to the pass. We’ll never be a 50 passing attempt team, but it may become closer to 30 attempts next year. Especially because teams are loading the box to stop Marshawn.

        • Robert says:

          Agreed. This year, especially down the stretch, teams were loading the box and stuffing our running lanes leaving our WR’s in 1 on 1 matchups that were often not exploited. We have to make them pay for that strategy! With PH, we can stretch d”s horizontally and distract LB’s and Safeties at will. I want to see Willson used more as a chip and release threat to blow by LB’s (remember Willis flailing to keep up). This will keep LB’s from clogging our running lanes. I also think our offense will “evolve” into more 11 personnel and 4WR split wide sets. The former allows TE to chip and release to attack LB’s and SS who are over committed to stuffing our running lanes. The latter forces only 6 in the box and 1 on 1 matchups for WR’s. RW should be able to pick D’s apart and Beast/OL only have to deal with 6 defenders. Our offense will be Top 5 this year and take some of the pressure off our D, which is a lethal combination!!!

  12. dale says:

    Phoenix picked up a good young left tackle that Oakland had in their pocket. Even with a questionable QB could the Cards be the third best team in football next year? The Rams are acquiring talent at a phenomenal rate by not drafting RGIII. Could the NFC West have the top four squads in the NFL in two years?

    • RadMan says:

      Cards pick up Ginn. Flaws and all he’s a nice little add. I was kind of hoping Seattle would get him. He’s improved a bit, and he would fill the PR//Kr role.
      He’s probably just too unwilling as a blocker to get on their list.

      Anyway… Cards may have overpaid anyway.

      • Matt says:

        The Cards have solidified their Oline adding Valdeer. They’ll get their first round Guard, Cooper, back from injury too. If Ellington is given more touches and they draft a power back the Cards offense looks way better. That defense took a hit losing Dansby, but a full season with Washington and last years 2nd rounder Minter should make up the difference. The Cards are equipped to make it 3 playoff teams in the NFC West.

  13. Tomahawk says:

    Rob,

    I remember you were very high on Charles Brown when he was coming out of USC. How would you rate him at this point in his career?

    Also, I like that our FO uses free agency for stud tight ends. Your article about the bust rates at that position for rookies was pretty alarming and makes me want to avoid that position in round 1 for the most part.

    • Rob Staton says:

      I think he’s struggled a bit at NO. But essentially, he’s always had the potential. As a pure veteran backup I’d consider it. They can’t be playing guys like McQuistan at LT again next year.

  14. Steve Nelsen says:

    Don’t read too much into Finley leaving without a contract. He isn’t fully medically cleared yet. I think Finley will be in play as soon as he is 100% cleared.

    • CHawk Talker Eric says:

      Ian Rapoport says Seahawks are waiting for JF to gain full medical clearance before signing him. Finley hasn’t scheduled any other visits with other teams, and it’s possible his signing with SEA is a formality upon getting the green light health-wise.

      • Emperor_MA says:

        They will check Finley out thoroughly. The Seattle area has some of the best neck/spine docs in the entire world …. nothing will go unnoticed about his health. In fact, one of the Seahawks’ docs is the top neck guy for the NFL, and he isn’t even the best neck doc in the area.

        If Finley can play, this team will know it. They’ll know if he can’t, too.

    • Robert says:

      I guess I don’t understand what Finley brings. I’ve heard he’s a cruddy blocker and he is slow (4.9s?). Does he gain separation by being a great route runner? What’s so great about him that he represents a big improvement over the TE’s we have?

  15. Arias says:

    I think the only real conclusion to draw at this point as to why they held onto Clemons that long is that they were attempting to renegotiate his contract behind the scenes and couldn’t come to an agreement.

    • CD says:

      Also think that maybe they did Clem a favor, or that Clem/his agent asked for it as they saw the market flood with 30+ year old DE. He might have said to JS, if theire is a 80%+ chance you are going to cut me, then cut me now as I want to find another team before everything is filled.

      • Emperor_MA says:

        I think there were some behind the scenes dealings with Gus Bradley, too. It wouldn’t surprise me in the least if the Seahawks do some sort of trade with J’ville come draft time. :-)

        My guess is that we will trade back and grab the Jags’ second-round pick (#35) so they can move up and select Derek Carr with the last pick in the first round. You heard it here first, folks!

  16. James says:

    It seems likely that Finley either did not pass his medical, or Zach Miller did indeed agree to renegotiate his contract. I suspect the latter.

    I agree that the release of Clemons, in particular, must mean that signing Earl Thomas is any-day-now.

    The Seahawks already have their top three receivers: Harvin, Baldwin and Kearse. I believe that Kearse had already passed Tate at the SE position, and certainly would have by the beginning of the coming season. Rice would be a good addition in that #4 receiver role, but I totally agree that we will see a WR picked in R1 or R2. After the free agent signings, I don’t see six WRs being selected before #32. Likely that Benjamin or Beckham will be there. I think a good right OT will still be there in R2.

  17. Belgaron says:

    Compensatory Scorecard:

    Teams can earn a maximum of 4 compensatory picks. They are based on salary, playing time, and post season honors.

    Average Annual Value (AAV) vs round:

    *****9-12M –– end of 3rd round*****
    None

    *****5.5-8.5M –– end of 4th round*****
    +Golden Tate Detroit Lions 5yr $31M ($6.2M AAV)

    *****3.5-6M –– end of 5th round*****
    +Breno Giacomini to New York Jets 4yr ??
    +O’Brien Schofield to New York Giants 2yr $8M ($4M AAV) [Currently cancelled failed physical knee]

    *****2.5-4.2M –– end of 6th round*****
    +Clinton McDonald to Tampa Bay Buccaneers 4yr $12M ($3M AAV)
    +Brandon Browner to New England Patriots ??
    +Walt Thurmond ??

    *****less than 2.3M –– end of 7th round*****
    +Chris Maragos to Washington Redskins 3yr $4M
    -Taylor Price from Jacksonville Jaguars ??

  18. Don says:

    Rob, excellent points as always, but you missed one more WR at #32……..

    First lets get back down to earth regarding Martavis Bryant and Brandon Coleman.

    It is easy to get excited about an athlete who has the gifts that these WR’s bring, but some of the readers above start to exaggerate a little about these guys.

    MB is 6′-4″ and ran a 4.42 . 9 -1/2″ hands. I saw his tape against NC State and that sold me on not taking him earlier than #64. He drops too many passes and seems like he doesn’t try hard enough. Maybe he is bored with the lack of competition or the lack of QB accuracy. The last catch was a TD over the DB head. That was the one good catch I saw out of the 3 min. of tape. For a guy of his height and speed, I expected more.

    Brandon Coleman is 6′-6″ and ran 4.56 with 9-1/4″ hands. Repeat 9-1/4″ hands! I still like him, but most of his catches are caught with his body, not his hands. I kept looking for examples of jumping up and catching a ball with his hands over someone, and I saw him do it only once in his highlight film. Again, because of this and his hands, he is a second or third round WR

    I am still a believer in Jordan Matthews at #32, 6′-3, 4.46 10-3/8″ hands. I have seem him make more catches with his hands than both MB and BC. He even catches the ball one handed, and he is a good blocker. He jumps up and catches in traffic. He has speed. This is the guy I want at #32.

    All we want is someone to catch the ball in the red zone (or end zone ), and Matthews seems to me the stronger of the three.

    I like Bitonio at #64, or trade up to mid 40′s to get him. We need both of these guys.

    Thanks Rob.

    • Cade says:

      Exactly!!!!

      When I look at a WR highlight tape I yawn my way through long TD catches in space. When a guy regardless of size starts making contested catches, that’s when I get excited.

      Who the flip cares if a guy is tall with long arms if he doesn’t make those redline plays? He essentially becomes Stephen Williams. Someone with a ton of speed and measurables but cant compete with true athletes who attack the ball in the air.

      Any player regardless of measurables who doesn’t compete for redline catches is a huge bust risk. I would hate to see them take either Coleman or MB and have that happen.. but theres always a high risk high reward situation if they can develop a guy..

      As pointed out in this very blog, given the state of our WR group, this year isn’t ideal for real risky WR projects.

    • Rob Staton says:

      I know Matthews is a big favourite with some — but I’m not sold personally. His tape isn’t what you expect. Pretty finesse, lot of snaps in the slot. Some great plays, some bad drops. Just not the big, fast, competitive guy you expect. I seriously think he’s a late second rounder at best.

      • me says:

        I don’t know where you’re getting the idea he’s not very competitive – the rep I’ve seen in him is that he’s a Seahawk style film rat with a perfectionist streak. I agree that he’s probably not a classic dominant #1 – but that’s not what we need. We already pay Harvin the draw that coverage attention. We need someone to capitalize on it on the outside.

        I pretty much agree on Bryant and Coleman. Both have the tools to be great but seem like major projects. The ceiling is higher than Matthews, although no don’t think its by nearly as much as some think. I’d be fine with either in the third or even reaching in the second, but neither is even close to a first round pick especially over someone like Bitonio or (if there is a God and he’s a Seahawks fan) Donald.

        I can’t believe there’s talk of Donald even falling to the point we could entertain the idea of trading up for him let alone all the way to our pick. That’s just nuts.

        • Belgaron says:

          The Donald slide is probably smoke and mirrors. When teams love players, they will avoid mentioning them as they don’t want teams trading above them. I suspect there is a team in the 6-15 range that will snap him up or perhaps some other team will jump to that range to take him.

        • Rob Staton says:

          My opinions only based on watching multiple Vanderbilt games. If we’re going to go off what other people think in terms of reputation… here’s the NFL.com report:

          http://www.nfl.com/draft/2014/profiles/jordan-matthews?id=2543500

          “Can be moody and has some diva in him.”

          It’s just my take, but I reckon he’s the most overrated player in the draft by us fans.

          • me says:

            Or you could read the other scouting reports like this one:

            “Matthews gives you all of the physical measurements you’re looking for at the position.

            He checks out from a character standpoint and is constantly praised for his work ethic.

            He even watched tape on cornerbacks he was going to face at the Senior Bowl before he headed down there. He stayed after practice in Mobile to get extra reps in with quarterback Derek Carr.

            He’s simply wired the right way.”

            You seem a little focused on the ‘diva’ quote but that’s the only such report I’ve seen that indicates any kind of character issues with him, and it doesn’t cite any actual evidence of the claim. Even that scouting report you linked makes him sound pretty darn attractive and its the least flattering one I’ve read for him:

            “Has leaping ability to compete in the air. Opens up his stride in the clear and shows nice long speed. Good field awareness. Gives effort as a blocker. Competes and plays with intensity. Tough and intelligent. Lined up outside and inside and has punt-return experience. ”

            He’s not a perfect player, but I think he’d be a very good fit. I don’t think hell end up being the pick at 32, but I’d be perfectly happy if he was.

            • Rob Staton says:

              I quoted a report to show an example of the difference in opinion. I’m not focused on the diva remark. Just showing the contrast in views.

      • Belgaron says:

        WR as it is being projected doesn’t really match 32 unless they really like Cooks, Benjamin, Robinson or Matthews. I think if they want to go WR with first pick, they might slide back a bit into 2nd round. Also as of right now, I’d include TEs in the possibilities at 32.

      • CC says:

        I like Devin Street as a value pick over Matthews – basically the same guy. Street didn’t have a QB but was a dependable receiver. Not a speedster, but at 6’3″ and 4.55 40 – he is a guy I’d like to see us look at in the 4th or 4th rounds.

      • Matt says:

        Rob- I don’t understand why you view Matthews playing the slot as a negative? Thoughts? Seems to me like it shows his versatility and willingness to go over the middle.

    • Rock says:

      I agree with you, Don. Furthermore, it isn’t just their failure to high point the ball, these tall, long striders typically have trouble with body control. You see on the film they cannot stop and come back to the ball when it is under thrown. This lack of body control leads to turnovers and negates the wing span measurable.

      Give me a guy like Golden that can catch everything and adjusts to the ball in the air. Jordan Matthews fits the bill but there are several others in this draft I would want before either Coleman or Bryant. Rob will disagree, but IMO Coleman is a late round pick you may be able to develop on your practice squad.

    • Robert says:

      I like Jordan Matthews, as well. I trust our scouts to compute the data and project how we could develop him. But from my limited perspective, he tick a lot of boxes. I am concerned about Bryant and Coleman because they seem stiff and do not play tough. But kelvin Benjamin and Jordan Matthews play physical and our great high point, hands catchers. JM might be a little shorter, but he plays big and has the jets. He might be high on PCJS’s radar…

  19. kigenzun says:

    I agree with everything Don just said above about big receivers with small hands. And perhaps he is onto something towards getting both Joel Bitonio, and Jordan Matthews. Quite a few folks believe this will be the ticket.

    But I wholeheartedly disagree with the order… Bitonio is the guy I can’t live without moving into the future, so I’d take him in the 1st to finally stabilize the OLine. Then Coleman, or Matthews or perhaps even Moncrief, (whomever is left), in the 2nd, to add depth to the receiving core. Personally, I don’t care for Bryant much at all for some reason. Give me Abbrederis or Janis even, instead.

    [To facilitate getting both Bitonio and Matthews... it could easily be achieved with a #32 Trade Down with, say, Minnesota for #40 & #72. We could get good value on Bitonio. Then have the flexibility to Trade Up with the #64 & #72 to get back into the 40's to get 'our guy'.]

    On a side note: Dagnabbit, I dared to hope Jermichael Finley was going to become a Seahawk BIG WR any minute today, that I may have tipped my hand a little bit early. To all the haters, I could care less he can’t block DE’s all up and down the field, because I do know he has the size to block S’s & CB’s when Marshawn’s handed the ball in the Red Zone, and much much much much more importantly… He pretty good catching the ball in the end zone!!!

    I say sign him up JS/PC. Believe me, he’ll pay dividends on our investment.

    • Rob Staton says:

      It’ll be tough to move down with the last pick in day one.

      • oz says:

        Some team is going to panic to get their guy. I see a down by the Hawks. Bank it!!!! Unless somebody slips that they can’t live without….

      • Chris says:

        Not necesssarily, kind of depends what happens with the QBs.

        I could easily see someone trading into late 1st in order to beat a top of the 2nd rush on QBs.

        • Rob Staton says:

          That’s touted every year though and when’s the last time it happened?

          None of the SB winning teams have been able to move from #32 since the shift to day one = round one.

          There’s really no need to have Seattle’s pick. You’re not waiting until the final pick of day one to jump up and get your QB. New England at #29 is a great spot if you want to do that.

          And there’s even less need to have SEA’s pick when Houston go QB at #1.

          • Matt says:

            Rob- that’s especially true since they split the draft up into 3 days instead of 2. 5 years ago it was way more feasible to move down from #32 than it is now. I think by that time most teams are just regrouping for day 2 of the draft.

          • Chris says:

            Like I said, depends what happens with the QBs. They tend to be over-drafted so trades to the late first havent been needed.

            Don’t forget Drew Brees was a 32nd pick. It’s not like it’s impossible a valued QB might be around when that pick rolls around.

            • Rob Staton says:

              But why would you need Seattle’s pick?

              If you’re eyeing a potential franchise QB in the back end of round one, you’re not going to wait until the very last pick of the day to do a deal are you?

              • SunPathPaul says:

                The one scenario I see here is if Houston and another QB needy team don’t go QB in round 1, but want to get their QB at the top of Round 2, Then maybe a team would want to jump up in front of Houston in round 2 to ensure they get their QB. (If they felt Houston wanted who they wanted.)

                I personally think Jared Abbredaris would be a great mid round fit here. Russell Wilson not only has played with him in college with great success, but they have a close religious connection. If RW was asked and he wanted Jared, I’d go get him. 6-1, 198, 4.5 40

              • Von says:

                Don’t forget the extra year that comes with being a first round pick. That’s a big advantage for teams. May be a reason for someone trading into the round, and a reason for Sea not to trade out.

                I personally think they’re going to take Shazier if he’s there. Freak athlete, very Seahawky, and some of the LBs may need to be replaced.

                • Rob Staton says:

                  Shazier has the kind of athleticism they love — but I’m not sure replacing, for example, Malcolm Smith or even K.J. Wright will be a first round priority a year before the event.

                  I’m pretty sure they’re going to focus on OL with one of the first two picks, if not both. And the options at receiver are too good not to grab one if they don’t go OL with both picks.

  20. Eli says:

    Rotoworld is saying Henry Melton is coming in for a visit this Friday. Prove it deal? Picking him up would definitely push us to the front of the line so far as D-lines.

  21. David M says:

    Am i really the only who sees Irvin going back to DE almost full time?

    I mean, Malcom Smith is just too good to leave on the sidelines, towards the end of the year, he was a WAY better LB than Irvin he was just making plays everywhere, look how much playing time he had… He was on the field more than Irvin in the SB, and I believe in the NFC Championship game too.

    You can’t leave talent like that off the field, and I think PC realizes that. Not saying Irvin is bad, because he is a great player, but if you want both of those guys on the field, Irvin has to be at DE, and I believe now is his time to shine and reallynstep up with Clemons gone…

    Smith, Wagner, and Wright is a solid LB group, but can Irving be a every down LEO player? Is that what PC/JS imagined/dreamed for when they selected him in the 1st round?
    What’s your guy’s opioions on this?

    • Belgaron says:

      Seahawks have different packages and assign different linebackers to different roles based on the package and their strengths. They aren’t worried about always having all of them on the field at all times just as they don’t do that with the LOB or Dline. You can take them at their word that he’s staying at LB. If reporters start reporting in OTAs or training camp that they are using him back at LEO, then you can start wondering if he’s getting moved back or just splitting time. But you can bet reporters will be asking if/when then happens.

      • Matt says:

        I don’t think a full time move DE is in the cards for Irvin, but we will probably see him line up there more often than last year. Last year was Irvin’s first at LB, so he’s bound to improve there. He’s a freak athlete who can now line up all over the field. The versatility on D is something Carroll has been preaching…Irvin and Bennett are both very versatile playmakers for our front 7.

        Agree that as of right now Malcolm is the better all around LB. Belgaron said it well that different packages call for different assignments. Smith and Irvin are both top notch athletes, but their strengths differ. It’s a good problem to have…more great players than there are positions on the field! Keep them fresh, rotate, and dominate!

        • Robert says:

          PC said they were grooming him to be a Von Miller type. I think they have developed him very methodically. Last year, the move to SAM forced him to play disciplined with a focus on his assignments and many variations on a given play. This year, he will play much faster. And on some passing downs, I think we will see him up at the LOS threatening various gaps pre-snap, which will create a lot of QB, RB and OL distractions. And then at the snap, he will fly through a gap or be apart of a stunt and all hell will break loose! The evolution continues…

    • Rob Staton says:

      I think I’m right in saying Dan Quinn already addressed this, saying they’d keep him at LB now.

  22. James says:

    It is fair to assume that PC & JS would not be releasing players unless they had someone on the roster to take the spot….no way they would assume that they can pick up a starter in the draft. Therefore, the winners are:

    - Greg Scruggs, Clint McDonald’s contract with Tampa is not that expensive for a part-time starter ($3 mil/yr), therefore the Seahawks must be projecting Scruggs in that slot.
    - Deshawn Shead, likewise Chris Maragos, an excellent special teams guy who simply did not play well at safety. Shead played much better filling in at safety, so he is the guy.
    - Jermaine Kearse, who I believe passed Golden Tate to become the #3 WR. No way to pay Tate $6 mil/yr to be the #4 WR. Kearse and Baldwin can certainly return punts, but I would love to see Christine Michael given a shot.
    - Benson Mayowa/Bruce Irvin, to take Clemons slot in the nascar package at rush Leo opposite Avril. Irvin best get on his horse, or his minutes are going to Benson and Malcolm Smith.
    - Michael Bowie, who has a clear passing lane to take Brenno’s spot at right OT. A rookie capable of starting can be found in R1, but the Seahawks would not put all their eggs in that basket. I believe that Pete and Tom Cable like James Carpenter better than some of his amateur critics. Watch the Super Bowl closely and see Carp handle the Broncos monster 360 lb Pot Roast nose guard. Carp just needs to lose about 20 lbs, or his job is at risk to a rookie, either at OG or OT, which would bump Bowie over to left OG.

    • David M says:

      IF Carp can come into camp healthy and in shape, i believe he has the starting job and is his to loose, but something about him doesn’t tell me he will.

      The kid has SOOOOOO much talent but he just doesn’t use it!, like you said if he lost 20 lb and gets a little more athletic, he could be the best guard in the NFL without a doubt. The talent is there, he just needs to loose some weight and i think that will make him less injury prone. i mean he can pile drive anyone, literally anyone, but on those runs where he needs to get to the 2nd level, he just cant seem to make it happen very well. He is strong as an ox, look what he does to Justin Smith, just needs to be a half step faster and more athletic and he could be that 1st round talent we all dreamed of when they selected him in the 1st

      • CC says:

        I wonder if Carp is a little lazy? Was he too coddled at Bama? The first time he showed any passion was when he was left off the active game day squad in the playoffs. He doesn’t have the grit Petey talks about all the time.

        • Robert says:

          PC knows how to find the pressure point! I’ll bet that was all part of his diabolical plan to get leverage on Carp so that he would work his ass off this off season and fulfill his potential for Greatness! PC is a master communicator and potential maximizer of men!

  23. Hay stacker509 says:

    I like your comparisons, the only thing I’d offer is bailey at LG and Bowie will be the man going into training camp holding the RT spot until someone unseats him. If we make another “big” FA offer it’ll be Charles brown or Donald penn. Both are OT, both could lock down the RT and backup okung in the LT while Bowie can learn behind both and be a dominant swing tackle?
    Thoughts anyone…

  24. Hay stacker509 says:

    Also I was in the camp of cut the fat man carp, I went back and rewatched the Super Bowl game (thank god for DVR!!) and I’m starting to change my mind. Yes he came into camp fat and out of shape but he did have some injuries and then look at the other game tapes that he’s filled in or started. He handles big strong angry lineman with ease. PC has a way with people and cable has his way with his oline guys. If he didn’t show some sort of fantastic skills or flash brilliance they both would have cut him. Look at the oline guys we have cut and have kept him instead. IMO he shines this year at LG

    • Emperor_MA says:

      I am with you on James Carpenter. I think he’ll be just fine at LG, if not damn good.

      I want Bitonio as a starting RT who can definitely fill in for Okung when he gets hurt again. Big Russ misses a lot of games and having a solid player to fill in is probably a good idea. We then can play Bowie at RT if Bitonio has to pinch-hit for Okung. I think he might last until #64, though.

      I like Sweezy but would also like to see Bailey, Bowie and Jean-Pierre be given a chance to win that spot. Bailey in particular flashed a few times late in the year and looks like he might be able to step into a starting roll.

      • David M says:

        exactly, Sweezy didn’t really more forward like many expected him to last year, i believe it was because he had know one pushing him for his spot, Moffit was gone…

      • James says:

        Sweezy is incredibly athletic, plays mean, and gives great effort. He just needs to get a lot stronger. He gets brick-walled by monster interior D linemen. Carp spends too much time in the weight room to be called lazy. He is naturally strong, but look at those arms…he didn’t have those at Bama. Maybe he is lazy at the dinner table, and just needs to say no to that good southern cooking, and give sushi a shot!

      • James says:

        The great value of Bitonio (and Cyrus Kouandjio if he happens to fall) is that he can fill in for Okung if the unfortunate trend of yearly injuries recurs. Perhaps the most glaring weakness on the Seahawks this year was McQuistan as Okung’s backup. A starting OT or OG who can adequately replace Okung makes perfect sense at #32.

        • David M says:

          i think now that Bailey has had experience, he will be the backup for LT, that is unless they draft one in the 1st round, a G/T guy who can adequately play both positions

        • CC says:

          No more Bama lineman! I’ve seen too many injuries from Carp and I think CK could be heading down the same path. I don’t care about his upside – there are other guys who are just as talented and will have the grit.

    • Madmark says:

      Carpenter problem is run blocking. He doesn’t have the mobility or speed to pull or get into the 2nd level. He has the pass blocking down allowing only 1 hurry every 25 pass attempts which isn’t as often for Seattle with there running attack. He’s in his last year of his contract and already knows the ZBS there’s really no reason to let him go his salary for the year is equal to a backup. Even if he gets supper motivated this year I would still probably let him go but for now starter or backup it is cost effective to keep him another year. I think Bowie will have no problem starting at RT. Will there be some growing pain, probably but by the end of the season I think he stamp the position as his. I’ll take a Joel Bitinio since a Zack Martin won’t make it to 32. He can push for the LG spot this year or play as McQuinstan position learning the ZBS and then push his way into LG the next year. Bailey will be the 6th blocker and backup for Tackles.
      The bottom line is I think this offensive line be better than the one last year with just 1 pick from the draft.

      • Michael (CLT) says:

        I would politely disagree. Watch the Super Bowl again. Carp is beastin to both levels. It is pass- pro that he need to show improvement. Watch his hands and feet placement in pass- pro… Needs improvement. He is quick, not agile… Does that make sense?

  25. David M says:

    also, thoughts on Finley, everyone knows were a run first team and PC doesn’t give a damn about that, obviously, he liked Bailey as the extra TE (or is extra tackle) on running downs in the playoffs and it worked great. so will he go forward with that? and do you think that is enough to warrant off the loss of losing miller and his blocking abilities for Finely in exchange?

    also, McCoy is a good blocker, and far better receiver than Miller speed wise.

    do you see Bailey being used on Play action? in essence take Millers spot, but stay in to block, that would really sell the run. And have Willson, McCoy or Finley on the opposite side of line, that would create some good mismatches with those guy’s speed (this is all assuming Miller is gone and Finely is signed)

    • CC says:

      Exactly my thinking – they were using an extra lineman when they needed extra blocking. Losing Tate – I’d like to get someone who can catch the ball over the middle – Finley!

  26. diFuria says:

    A little birdie told me that the issue with Carpenter is that he has a little diva in him. The front office has received one two many calls from his agent. It’s not the shape he is in (he’s working through injuries) – it’s just that he doesn’t eat nails for breakfast. Like Sweezy. Cable influence in this regard should not be understated. The front office LOVES Sweezy and thinks he will break out. If motivation has been the problem for Carp, it won’t be this year because he understands the situation. Bowie starting late last year was very encouraging. The thinking is that he just needs experience. So with a healthier Okung and Unger – together with some young competition from the draft, the Oline will be very much improved. We can get a stud receiver and still land Bitonio (who some project in the 3rd round). And who know what JSPC thinks of Cyrus Kouandjio’s knee. Or maybe Antonio Richardson. They are probably hot on someone only Rob has ever heard of who can come in and compete. Pair that with a few free agents who are discounted because of injuries (Finley, Rice, Taylor) and last year’s Redshirt/IR class (ala C Michael and P Harvin). This offense can be better than last year (ranked 7th in the league). You know, the offense that was plenty good enough to win the World Championship. Yeah, we’re good.

    • Robert says:

      It’s amazing we were Top 7 last year despite all the OL injuries. And Okung was cruddy even when he did come back. Kudos to Cable for the crash course that got Bowie and Bailey up to speed. But McQ was atrocious…when I tired of yelling, I just had to laugh at how ineffective he was. This year, we are Top 5 and the Beast game rolls! That’ll take some pressure off our D, which is scary. RW spotted working out at the UW…

      • Michael (CLT) says:

        I hope they make Cable assistant head coach for life. I truly believe this is as far as he goes. Pay him 5-7M a year to coach’em up.

    • CC says:

      Why am I not surprised to hear this about Carp?!? It just seems like he has been living off what he did at Bama.

  27. Stuart says:

    If Carp came in 20 lbs lighter and in great shape, our entire offensive line becomes more potent immediately.
    It’s now or never for Carp, contract season…

    Sign TE JF and TE Miller agrees to a big pay cut, keeping both, options galore.

  28. [...] What might be more likely is something we discussed earlier in the week. [...]