What I’m looking for at the combine

February 16th, 2015 | Written by Rob Staton

Will there be another Bruce Irvin this week?

I’ll be conducting a daily live blog Friday-to-Monday during the combine workouts. I hope you’ll join in the debate and get involved. Today I wanted to run through some of the things I’ll be looking out for over this year. Measurements begin on Wednesday with the OL’s, TE’s and PK’s. Workouts begin on Friday. For a full schedule breakdown, click here.

— Eli Harold is a perfect LEO pass rusher. He’s long, lean and explosive. I think he could end up going in the top ten. Is there a more natural fit for Dan Quinn if he wants to emulate Seattle’s scheme in Atlanta? Cliff Avril and Bruce Irvin are good comparisons for what to look for. Avril ran a 4.51 with a 1.50 ten yard split. Irvin ran a 4.50 with a 1.55 ten yard split. They were both 6-3 — Avril had 8lbs on Irvin (253 vs 245). Harold is listed at 6-4, 250lbs.

— Will LSU defensive end Danielle Hunter win the combine? He has a ridiculously low body fat percentage (4%), he’s incredibly long and fluid. Personally I think his tape is horrendous but you can see the upside based purely on athleticism. He could go off in Indianapolis, excelling across the board in every drill.

— Who are the candidates to challenge Hunter? Eli Harold has to be in with a shout. Owamagbe Odighizuwa is built like a Greek God and could have a Ziggy Ansah type weekend. Ansah ran a 4.63 at 271lbs, had a terrific 4.26 short shuttle and a 34.5 inch vert. Odighizuwa doesn’t have Ansah’s 35-inch arms but he has enormous 11-inch hands and similar size (266lbs).

— Melvin Gordon is a workout machine. A true gym rat. Let’s see if all the work was worth it here. Jamaal Charles, the player he’s often compared to, ran a 4.38. I wouldn’t expect that kind of speed, but he’s probably a solid 4.4 runner. He has a fantastic, errr, ‘ass’, so he could challenge the 11-2 broad jumps by Lache Seastrunk, Anthony Alridge and Carl Stewart (best recorded jump in last ten years).

— Can William & Mary receiver Tre McBride prove he’s a fantastic athlete? Reports suggest he can get into the 4.4’s. I need to see it to believe it. Even if he runs in the 4.5’s — it shouldn’t be a concern. He’s shown enough suddenness, playmaking ability, ball skills, size and character to warrant serious consideration possibly as early as the late second round. He’s one of the most exciting receivers in the class and deserves more attention.

— Will Tevin Coleman work out? Tony Pauline reported in December he was carrying a foot injury. He was compared to Darren McFadden by Mike Mayock today. It’d be interesting to see if he can get anywhere near McFadden’s 4.33 forty time. UPDATE — Gil Brandt has confirmed Coleman will not participate.

— How fast is Jaelen Strong and what is his broad jump? I think he’s going to produce an excellent vertical with his basketball bloodlines. The main concern is separation skills. Can he show initial quickness in the forty and lower body explosion in the broad? He’s got a real chip on his shoulder — his Twitter timeline is a constant stream of retweeted criticisms. Let’s see if he can prove the doubters wrong.

— Just how fast are Devin Smith and Phillip Dorsett? I think Dorsett has a clear edge between the two and should provide the fastest time over the four days. Considering both players lack size, speed is going to be crucial. The quickest time by a receiver in the last ten years was the 4.27 by Marquise Goodwin in 2013, followed by Jacoby Ford (4.28) and Darrius Heyward-Bey (4.30). If I had to guess, I think Dorsett runs in the 4.3’s.

— Sammie Coates and Breshad Perriman have similar traits. They look the part and should have excellent combines. They need to. They have to convince teams to invest in upside potential because catching the ball consistently is a problem for both. If they want to generate high second round (or even first round) grades, they have to live up to expectations and test well across the board. And they need a team or two to believe they can improve with a summer on the jugs machine. Athleticism alone wasn’t enough for Cody Latimer (who had amazing hands) to get in round one. I think Coates and Perriman will struggle to crack day one, but if they’re going to — it’ll be down to their physical skills.

— Can Dorial Green-Beckham make a statement? He doesn’t just have to ace team interviews in Indianapolis. I think he needs to speak well to the media and show a ‘changed man’ vibe. I want to see him answer some difficult questions. On the field he needs to flash freak-of-nature talent at 6-6 and 225lbs. This is an opportunity to regain some momentum. The character concerns are legit and damaging for DGB. He needs to make some positive headines. Cornerback Marcus Peters faces a similar test — although I expect he’ll ace team and media interviews. He’s a smooth operator.

— How quick is Nelson Agholor? Watching him dunk a basketball, compete all over the field, return punts and play with real grit and determination makes you want to believe in the guy. A really good forty time could pump up his stock. Running a 4.52 last year hurt former teammate Marqise Lee. I’m not sure he has the potential to add too much weight and he’s skinny. That’s a concern. Guys without size need to be sudden and quick. I think he can beat Lee’s time. I like him.

— Just how special is Devin Funchess? Speaking of dunks, how about the video posted in yesterday’s piece? Expect an incredible vertical jump. I think he can produce a terrific 3-cone too, he shows good change of direction skills on the field. The main concern is he’s a build-up-speed runner and might not break the 4.7’s. If he can crack the 4.6’s — watch out. He’s working with the TE’s not the WR’s. Mike Mayock says he has better movement skills than Kelvin Benjamin. Funchess is the biggest enigma in the draft.

— Will we see any separation among the top three receivers? Hand size, forty times, vertical jumps — all could be difference makers for Amari Cooper, Kevin White and Devante Parker. For me Cooper is the cream of the crop and could surprise a few people. He’s more athletic than he gets credit for.

Yesterday we discussed how Maxx Williams won’t be judged on speed. He has a knack of making plays, he has exceptional character and he’s just a good football player. But if he can impress here with a great work out — and if he has above average length/hand size, it won’t hurt. If Coby Fleener can manage 27 reps on the bench press I’d like to see that from Williams. He doesn’t look particularly toned in the arms. Has he got natural strength? If he is going to run in the 4.8’s like Marcedes Lewis — a 37-inch vert would be a nice trade-off.

— How does Penn State tight end Jesse James perform at 6-7 and 245lbs? We’re all looking for a freak of nature TE. At that size it’s harsh to expect a remarkable workout. You can guarantee if we do see a special workout warrior at TE this year (we didn’t in 2014) he’ll be going earlier than he probably should. Every team is looking for the next Gronk/Graham. Of all the tight ends capable of making a statement — Wes Saxton at South Alabama might be the guy. He’s lighter (6-4, 235lbs) and that could help in the quickness drills. He looks good on the field.

— Which of the OT’s separate? Every year athletic linemen really boost their stock. It’s why Eric Fisher ultimately usurped Luke Joeckel as the #1 pick in 2013. It’s why Lane Johnson propelled himself into the top-five. D.J. Humphries at Florida has reportedly added 20lbs of weight. He’s long and smooth. If he can show mobility despite the extra size he could jump into the round one mix. T.J. Clemmings should also impress physically. Teams really focus on the athletic qualities here — much more so than they used to. Greg Robinson, Taylor Lewan and Joel Bitonio were all incredible athletes with consistently good physical traits and drill performances. It’s no surprise Lewan and Bitonio impressed in year one. With the best athletes in college playing on the D-line these days, agility on the O-line has become absolutely vital.

— Will Andrus Peat and Ereck Flowers perform as well in the kick-slide drill as I expect? Can they match it with the length and strength to cement their place in round one? Can Brandon Scherff and La’ell Collins convince teams they can play tackle? How will Ty Sambrailo do in the bench press? He needs to show strength to match his foot speed. Can Jake Fisher likewise show upper body power and maybe a little extra (good) weight? How athletic is Penn State’s Donovan Smith or Corey Robinson at South Carolina?

— Is Leonard Williams as good as advertised? I think he shows real flashes of quality and his production at USC is good. But I’m not sure he’s quite the player he’s been hyped up to be in the media. If he shows up here with a supreme workout — I’ll eat my words. Speaking of USC prospects — how does running back Buck Allen perform? He doesn’t flash eye-catching size, speed or power — but he cuts on a dime. He has a shot to break round two as a top-notch cut-and-run back.

— How big is Shane Ray? He’s listed by Missouri at 6-3 and 245lbs but he looks smaller on tape. If he’s 6-1 and lacks length, how does that impact his stock? Rest assured he’ll do well in every drill as an explosive pass rusher. But teams value length and size, especially if you’re going to play D-end in the 4-3.

— I’ve seen some tape complaints on Oklahoma nose tackle Jordan Phillips. You know who had lousy college tape? Dontari Poe. Then he ran a 4.98 and went in the top-12 picks in 2012. If Phillips can run a similar time — and if he passes all the medical checks on his back — don’t be shocked if he enjoys a similar rise.

— Arik Armstead appears to be a favorite within the various front offices, much more so than in the media during the 2014 college season. He’s listed at 6-8 and 290lbs. Let’s see how big he really is and whether he can put on a show at that kind of size. You want to believe he’s another Calais Campbell. And yet Campbell didn’t have an amazing combine — running a 5.04 in 2008, posting 16 reps on the bench press (long arms — problematic here) and a 29.5-inch vertical. He had a 1.69 ten-yard split. It’ll be interesting to compare.

— We’ve been waiting 18 months to see Vic Beasley run a forty yard dash. He’s small, light and lacks length. It’s all about the speed with Beasley. Can he get anywhere near Bruce Irvin’s numbers (size and speed)? He’s going to have to run in the 4.5’s at least — you’d hope for the 4.4’s if he’s in the 230-240lbs range. He needs a great ten yard split too. Given his shorter arms you’d like to see a not-hopeless performance on the bench press too to alleviate some of the strength concerns. Irvin had 23 reps.

— I don’t see any of Carl Davis, Preston Smith, Henry Anderson or Mario Edwards Jr going in the first round. But they get hyped up a lot, so let’s see how athletic they really are. Smith is the most intriguing with excellent size and length. I’m just not sure he’s a top-athlete. Datone Jones forced his way into round one with a 4.80 forty, 112-inch broad jump and an excellent 4.32 short shuttle. That’s the benchmark for guys like Smith and Edwards Jr. Davis is bigger and has to look good compared to Malcom Brown and Eddie Goldman — two former 5-star recruits. As well as he played at the Senior Bowl, Davis’ tape is rank average.

— The defensive tackle I’m most interested in watching here? Washington State’s Xavier Cooper. I watched my first batch of games last week and he was very, very impressive. A possible second or third rounder for me, but I want to watch more before making a firm judgement.

— Hau’oli Kikaha’s medical checks will be interesting. Is he 100% healthy? And how athletic (or not) is he? He has the production, he’s a great hands fighter and he just gets to the quarterback. But he’s going to need to prove he’s more than a good college player. I’m not overly optimistic. If he he’s healthy though, teams will take interest in his production.

— Alabama safety Landon Collins was touted as a SPARQ demon a couple of years ago. Here’s your chance to prove it, Landon. In an especially weak year for safety’s he could go very early.

— LSU cornerback Jalen Collins is one of my favorite players this year. I think he could be a top-15 pick. He has the size and length. We know that already. I think on tape he shows rare athletic qualities too (eg chasing down Melvin Gordon in the open field). Monday could be his day. Get ready because Collins is a stud in the making. Jonathan Joseph ran a 4.31 at 5-11 and 188lbs in 2006. I’ll stick my neck out and say Collins pushes the 4.3’s at 6-2 and 198lbs.

— In terms of later round corners, I really like Alex Carter, Steven Nelson and Damian Swann. Out of the three, I suspect only Swann ticks the required ‘length/size’ boxes for Seattle. Which other corners stand out athletically to be the next possible Sherman/Maxwell/Browner? It’ll be a fascinating watch on Monday. This is the position, more than any other, where you can look at a sheet of measurements and eliminate three quarters of the group and focus on certain size ideals.

— Is Quinten Rollins a safety or a corner? You can ask the same question about Utah’s Eric Rowe. They need to show nimble footwork, change of direction skills, initial quickness and explosion. Still, Richard Sherman didn’t have the greatest combine so it’s never worth ruling anything out.

Let me know what you’ll be looking out for in the comments section.

111 Responses to “What I’m looking for at the combine”

  1. matt509 says:

    Ladarius Gunter out of Miami was a CB that I just started looking at. He’s long and quick.

    • Ehurd1021 says:

      If you like Gunter you should take a look at Kevin Johnson out of Wake Forest.

      • Greg haugsven says:

        It will be interest in to see KJ’s weight…I’ve seen anywhere between 175-215

      • matt509 says:

        I liked Johnson but I think I like Gunter a little more right now. He’s seems bigger and has the length Seattle likes. I’ve only seem very little film so it’s a little too soon to judge.

    • Robert says:

      He has all the physical attributes our FO looks for. But his grades were cruddy, which forced him to spend 2 years at a CC. That might be a credential killer…they like them to be studious!
      I wonder if we might target more of a nickel corner in the mold of Thurmond…shorter, quicker and ideally with long arms and hopefully some durability!

  2. CharlieTheUnicorn says:

    The guys to watch are the smaller school or DIV2 guys at the combine. Most are not well known, but can pump up their stock for the 2015 draft.

    I’m intrigued by RB David Cobb out of Minnesota. Does he posses the speed to be a true #1 RB in NFL? Pre-combine is in the 4.6 range, but can he bust 4.5? He appears to have the heart and desire to pound the rock…. ala Beastmode Jr.
    Lets also keep in mind Cougar WR Vince Mayle. A potential mid round pick, that could have an impact in the NFL. It will be nice to see his measurables and times.

  3. Greg haugsven says:

    My gut tells me ghe Srshawks ate going to drsft Danielld Hunter. I look forward to comparing Hunters times and measurements to Harold and Gregory who are all around 6’5″ 240…I believe they go on Sunday.

    • Greg haugsven says:

      Sorry, typing this on a phone.

    • drew says:

      Isn’t Hunter around 270 lbs?

    • peter says:

      What round would you expect? Hunter has almost zero production and no real proof of extreme athleticism only that he is assumed to be fast. People scratched their heads at Irvin but he had production plus athleticism. I could see Hunter in the Fourth as a guy who looks the part.

      • Nem Beselek says:

        First-time comment.

        Based on what little amount of highlight footage I’ve seen of Hunter I really don’t understand why anyone thinks this guy will get drafted the first two days of the draft. He is quick, and he does stay with the play, not giving up once he gets hit on the initial block. The problem is he gets blocked easily by running backs and tight ends.

        He is quick enough to evade some of the more ponderous tackles. He can get some tackles moving backwards in their slide and then cross their face and get in front of them with just a little bit of a hand shiver. The problem is that he “opens his chest” up for blocking, letting any blocker with even a little quickness to get into his torso and stand him up, stopping his forward motion. Once this happens he is apparently not strong enough to disengage from the block, and is easily taken out of the play.

        I would maybe look to draft him after the 5th round on size and spend potential alone, but not before then.

        • Michael (CLT) says:

          Great first post. Always appreciate a new perspective!

          • Volume 12 says:

            Teams draft on potential

            If your a defensive coach, you have to salivating at the possibility of getting your hands on an athletic freak like DE Danielle Hunter. Yes he’s raw, that’s what’s appealing. Draft guys that don’t have many bad habits, and then put your stamp on them.

        • Greg haugsven says:

          In the first round…Seahawks do weird things and this kid is only 20… Unlike Irvin who was 25…I think LSU used him not as a traditional DE, you see his stat line, 1.5 sacks with 73 tackles, that’s more like LB numbers. The stat line you don’t see is his balls batted down. That’s an element we don’t have. Well see at the combine when he tears it up.

          • Michael (CLT) says:

            Two more good counter-pespectives. This blog rocks.

          • Volume 12 says:

            I’m 100% with you on this one. I really like him.

            • Greg haugsven says:

              A first round projection might be early but that’s never stopped the hawks before…I really like the fact he’s so young…kind of like Earl Thomas when we drafted him…his second contract would be when he would be 24…when Irvin was drafted he was 25…crazy…I hope he does good at the combine but not to good. He reminds me of Jevon Kearse.

  4. Ross says:

    Receivers, ends, linemen and cornerbacks. I want to see who athletically distinguishes themselves and who can answer some of their question marks. Is Philip Dorset more than just a sprinter? Will Collins blow up like we expect him to?

    I’m also looking forward to hearing the buzz about some players. The actual importance of the Combine may be exaggerated, but there’s a real chance for guys to make a good impression and we usually know about those who do and those who don’t. Remember Blake Bortles? He didn’t shine in the field drills but by throwing when Manziel and Bridgewater didn’t, and just generally by acting motivated and professional, he shot to the top of qb rankings and mock drafts.

  5. Erik says:

    As a Huskies fan I am biased towards Marcus Peters at CB despite his attitude concerns. I like his size, competitiveness, and tackling ability. Fits the mold of the LOB. I did like the tape of Collins at LSU as well. #GoHawks

    • Scott B. says:

      I agree with Peters. I think he also caught a bad break with coach Pete. I don’t know if he gets kicked off the team by any other coach. Luckily for the Seahawks, that could sink his stock.

  6. Ehurd1021 says:

    Rob what exactly don’t you like about Leonard Williams, or is it just the USC factor and being a possible high pick that scares you? you wouldn’t be the only one if thats the case but USC has had better luck with guys going early on the defensive side of the ball.

    When I watch tape on Williams and the games I have caught live he jumps off the screen to me as a physical and dominate athlete. You don’t see men at 6’5 300+ that have his quickness and power — he IMO is the quintessential speed-to-power defensive lineman scouts talk about. Williams also from the tape I watch has a fantastic motor and offers something very unique in his ability as a 3 down player and as a interior pass rusher. I also believed he played in three different schemes (Monte Kiffin, Clancy Pendergast and Justin Wilcox) at USC and his production remained consistent.

    Just curious to here your thoughts?

    • Rob Staton says:

      It’s kind of a similar issue to Odighizuwa. There’s no doubting the wonderful size/athleticism combo, the ability to win with power and destroy linemen working inside. But what I don’t think we see with Williams is any kind of edge rush. So to me you’re left with this situation where you either move him inside (which is fine, but is he an every down interior DT?) or you use him as a 5-technique which is essentially a non-premium position and difficult to make an impact from unless you’re called J.J. Watt. I like him enough to say top ten but in terms of whether he’s the top player in the class like a lot say, I can’t go that far.

  7. Colin says:

    I’m still looking for relief from the events of 15 days ago. Still terribly upset.

    • Jim says:

      Me too Colin.

      It just seems like such a bad dream. Many chances to win the game. Such an amazing season leading up the interception. Still an amazing season and likely many great years ahead but wow it hurts. A lot.

      How can one fully turn the page and stop the “what ifs?”

      If someone has a good remedy please pass it on.

    • Rob Staton says:

      I find imagining this guy in a Seahawks jersey helps as a distraction…

      Suh

      • Cysco says:

        yes please.

      • Madmark says:

        The British say in for the penny in for the pound but I like the American saying, I’m all in.

      • Colin says:

        That definitely helps as a distraction.

      • CHawk Talker Eric says:

        Just made my week!

      • Dave says:

        Hawk Blogger recently posted about Stephen Paea, NT/3T. Put up 49 reps on the bench at the Combine and plays with good technique. He had 47 QB hurries last year just behind Suh. Paea wouldn’t cost half as much.

        • Rob Staton says:

          Paea for me is a pure run blocker. Had some sacks in 2014 which is good — but I fear all that will do is over-inflate his value. A player I like now and liked pre-draft. Wouldn’t be against it.

      • Robert says:

        Check out that muscle behind his ear…I don’t even have one of those. It’s bigger than my trapzoid!!! Or D would be legendary! But we lost the superbowl because our depth was severely challenged and could not answer the call with any pass rush up the middle in the 4th quarter. So I believe the FO will prioritize depth.

        • JeffC says:

          Depth hurt us. Injuries hurt us. Receivers hurt us. Bad coverage against gronk hurt us. But I’m still 100% convinced if Pete runs lynch on second down we are celebrating super bowl #2 despite all of that.

          Where I think getting a guy like Suh helps is not in the sb, it’s in getting back there. Now winning the sb – I still don’t believe we were who we were supposed to be.

          • Robert says:

            RW left a lot of opportunities out there. I wish the Beast would have told him to take over the game, as he has before to good effect. PC may have called pass, but I believe Bevelle chose the Zero Read Slant to Lockette, which astonishingly relied on Kearse successfully beating Browner’s jam so he could screen off the DB…folly! It didn’t help that RW led Lockette high instead of zipping it directly into his belly. Given the 11 personnel on O vs Goal line D, I line up RW under center to force goal line D to play run and crash LOS and lanes hard. RW fakes handoff to Beast and rolls right. Matthews crossing deep and Baldwin crossing short would provide 2 safe targets. Good look for RW to hit either WR, throw it out of the endzone to kill the clock or just run it in. When RW lined up in shotgun, I started screaming at the TV. The Zero Read Slant effectively ELIMINATED ALL the special talents of RW and the Beast in one fell swoop…LOL>>tears.

            • JeffC says:

              My wife remembers that play very well. As soon as RW dropped back, she heard a “No! No! No! No!” Followed by my body crashing backward into my chair in disbelief and exasperation. I’ll never accept PC’s spin on it, ever.

              RW will get his payday and I want him to get his payday. But then all that criticism that they level on him as a 600,000 dollar qb will increase tenfold. He won’t get a break now until the end of his career. No matter what he does, he will never win over a huge segment of the football population.

              If Peyton Manning has his critics, and he does, RW will certainly never gain acceptance in the whole population of fans and haters.

              As for Bevell, I don’t want him to lose his job, but he deserves criticism. He deserves some praise. But he is not infallible, and there are many Viking fans who blame him for the NFC championship loss to the Saints for the same reasons of that last play in the sb. He also, no matter what happens from here on out, will never have the complete faith of the seahawk population.

              I can’t forget that loss, ever. I wish I could.

              • Robert says:

                RW will be fine when we upgrade his targets. I would like to move on from Lockette, Kearse and Walters. I think Norwood and Matthews will be solid players this year. My fantasy is we draft Dorial Green Beckham and his naughty phase is behind him.

                I was very disappointed Bevelle threw Lockette under the bus. That was just a ludicrous play to call that wasted RW’s magical talents and a opportunity to secure legendary status for the team.

                My problems with Bevelle began in 2013 when he rarely had a TE chip block for poor McQuistan at LT. TE chip and release routes always soften LB’s who are over-agressively attacking the LOS and running lanes to stuff our Beast game. Another way to open up our running game is to simply line up 4WR’s split wide. No Safety is suicide. So that leaves only 6 in the box VS 5 OL. Time to play Read Option which nullifies the DE and he still probably fails to contain RW with so much space to defend. Beast would run wild! But Bevelle rarely plays constraint play football: oh, the D is doing that? OK, then we will do THIS to make them pay! Bevelle doesn’t think like that. And he doesn’t FEEL the game and matchups…IE Kearse vs Browner on a critical pick assignment is NOT a favorable matchup advantage. Thanks for letting me rant! The best salve for 49 would be a re-match/blow out in 50 including RW with a couple checkdown/vetoes of Bevelle’s occasionally “cute” plays.

                • SunPathPaul says:

                  I agree Robert. Bevell seems to use Pete’s philosophy of we are just going to “line up and beat you.’ That isn’t appropriate for an offense, but the defense…

                  The offense, Bevell especially, needs to “WAKE UP” to mismatches and playing in the moment against what the defense is doing. He seems to play without considering who he is playing…

                  Like you pointed out on that last play, having Ricardo Lockette as a prime target on a final SB play??? Ridiculous! Expecting Kearse, who had just run a long play, to block the most physical CB in the league B Browner…He COULDN’T do it!

                  Bevell gets paid to KNOW these matches/mismatches, and he revealed at a clutch moment, that he had ZERO clue!!!

              • Volume 12 says:

                Who cares if RW never gains 100% acceptance? I say to those type of fans, go root for another team.

                RW would have never gained acceptance anyways, because people still ding him for his height, the fact he’s a read-option/mobile QB, whatever else. Still doesn’t discredit the fact this dude has ice water in his veins, 2 SBs in 3 years, is only going to get better, and that play is just fuel for the fire my friend.

          • mrpeapants says:

            ty

      • Greg haugsven says:

        That would be nice but to much dough…I look at a one year deal for Greg Hardy. Imagine your Bobby Wagner on a third and 8 and you see a line in front of you consisting of Avril, Hill, Bennett, and Hardy…that QB will dropping a deuce in his drawers.

    • Bill Bobaggins says:

      Yes…this is the first time I’ve opened up this site since then. I still haven’t watched a split second of ESPN or NFL Network. And my car hasn’t been tuned to sports radio since.

      I equate this to a bad break up with the gal of your dreams. At first, it just hurts so bad and you can’t stop thinking about it. Then you tune it out and the pain starts to subside.

      Suh is my new girlfriend.

    • JeffC says:

      I still think about the 2005 super bowl, so I suppose this will last a whole lot longer.

  8. CC says:

    I always am more intrigued by the guys who are projected lower and often are not invited to the combine. This year seems to have a lot of talented guys who weren’t invited. But here are a few guys who were invited that I’ll be watching.

    I have a new job – so I’ll have to catch up at night!

    Rory/Busta Anderson TE blocks and catches

    Funchess, Dez Lewis, Tony Lippett and DGB are the WRs I’m interested to see what they do.

    Byron Jones CB UConn – was injured, so wondering if he falls a bit due to the injury

    Jeremy Langford RB

  9. Michael (CLT) says:

    Jay Ajayi. This is the guy I want to pop. Unlike Gurley, this guy can make yards after contact.

    • David Ess says:

      his fumbling issues is what concerns me. Pete values ball control. Hes def a good back in the regards of getting extra yards though.

    • Rob Staton says:

      Unlike Gurley? That’s cold man.

      FWIW I don’t think I’ve seen Gurley go down under initial contact. Seems like he’s very good at making extra yards.

      • CHawk Talker Eric says:

        Agree. Not sure I’ve seen Gurley go down on initial contact. Like any RB, some carries don’t go far, but he’s a punishing runner.

      • Michael (CLT) says:

        🙂 I may be a bit harsh. Actually, I am being harsh. Living in the South, and having a close friend whose daughter attends Georgia, I watch many (all…) Georgia games the past four years.

        Gurley is an enigma. He has all the tools, yet he has never really delivered consistently on his talent. Combine that with the success that Nick Chubb had behind the Georgia line, and you begin to wonder.

        Gurley reminds me very much of Trent Richardson. Tons of natural gifts, yet he tends to only shine when the holes are massive. I do think I am being harsh on his yards after contact, yet his ability to read blocks and “get small” is very much in question.

        I realize you are not impressed with Ajayi, as he is quick to bounce outside and uses the spin move too often. Yet, he is making people miss, sliding through small cracks, make yards that are “not there”.

        Ajayi does fumble too often. Probably too often for him to be a Seahawk. That said, aside from Gordon, I think he is the most natural running talent.

        Always appreciate the feedback. Go Spurs.

        • CharlieTheUnicorn says:

          T Rich will be looking for employment in 2015, might be worth a low salaryroll of the dice to bring him to Seattle. He would be here for competition purposes.. to push Turbin and Micheal. He might be spent and can be easily jettisoned.

          The point about the Georgia OL does make me wonder about evaluating RBs out of that school.

    • Scott B. says:

      I’m from Boise and watched Ajayi throughout his career here. The guy is really good. He has better straight line speed than he gets credit for. Will be curious to see what he runs at the combine. If Gurley/Gordon aren’t an option, I think Ajayi would certainly be a good fallback.

    • icb says:

      I like Ajayi.

      His fumble stats are almost identical to Melvin Gordon throughout his career. Only Jay had more rushing attempts, more receiving attempts, all in less games

      Haven’t seen anyone say Melvin fumbles too much…… Heck, Melvin fumbled 7 times in 14/15 and lost 6 of them…

      Food for thought.

    • matt509 says:

      Jay Ajayi reminds me of Lacy. I would love to have him on the team even if we keep Lynch. Ajayi and CMike could be a good 1-2 punch.

  10. David M2 says:

    Rob,

    What are your thoughts about Bostick now that’s he’s been released by Green Bay? Do you think the Hawks should/may give him a shot?

  11. Volume 12 says:

    I agree with Greg. LSU DE Danielle Hunter won’t only blow up the combine IMO, but he’ll kill it/ace his interviews as well.

    WR Nelson Agholor is a year 1 impact player, He’s skinny in his lower half, not so much up top. Love this kid. Has everything Seattle typically looks for in receivers. Gritty, good route runner, blocks well, versatile, lays it all out on the field, amazing production.

    Watch out for Towson DE Ryan Delaire. Prototypical LEO size, good length and build, he’s rumored to be an athletic freak, and to run one of the fastest 40 times for a DE. His 10 yard split should be out-standing as well.

    Really like TE Wes Saxton the more I watch him.

    UCF CB Jacoby Glenn has my interest piqued. Looks ‘Seahawky.’ Loaded with potential, being only a R-SO.

    Norfolk St DE Lynden Trail. I think he’s going to show everyone what a terrific athlete he really is.

  12. Volume 12 says:

    Found this to be very interesting. Nothing we don’t already know, but perhaps more telling. It’s from Fieldgulls and is obviously one of Seattle’s scouts talking about the Seahawks draft strategy.

    “Everyone wants to focus on the top-tier guys, the first two or three rounds,” Fitterer said. “The bulk of our team, and the core of our team, has come in rounds four through seven and free agency. We spend as much, if not more time, on those guys. “John takes great pride in finding those guys, and we do it as a group. That’s kind of our identity.”

    Just me, or does it seem like Seattle drafts backwards? Instead of rounds 1-7, it’s almost rounds 7-1.

    • Rob Staton says:

      I think the quote is a nice dose of snobbery personally. “Everyone wants to focus on the top-tier guys” — that’s probably because most people aren’t pro-scouts and just want a bit of light relief during the off-season. I mean, how are we supposed to focus on finding the next Eric Pinkins? And while the media, blogs and various Twitter accounts do spend time discussing later round prospects — it’s really the first two days that are the most interesting for the mass-fan base.

      I’m glad the Seahawks spend most of their focus on the later rounds and try to find those diamonds. Although their record in round one isn’t great since 2010 when they had two picks in the top-15.

      • Morgan says:

        Well, to be fair that’s also what Mike Lynn said after trading for Herschel Walker.

      • peter says:

        Agreed with this addendum however.. There are FO’s that also focus on the top tier because they can since they are in perpetual rebuild mode and as a parallel to his statement even here at SDB there are about 15 guys we never talk about because they are going to get picked well before 31 so its sort of pointless for us to discuss Randy Gregory’s pro/ con list.

        That said some of the late round picks honestly everyone’s just spit balling at this point. Just throwing names out there to see what sticks.

      • hawkfaninMT says:

        I did not get the context, but I think he may have been referring to other front offices with the “Everyone” portion of the quote. I do not think he/front office cares much what we do or think about the draft and it’s prospects

        • Rob Staton says:

          I hope you’re right.

          • john_s says:

            Take the Minnesota Vikings for example. They have been very aggressive in the first round. In the past three drafts they have had 7 first round picks – 2012 – Matt Kalil, Harrison Smith 2013 – Sharrif Floys, Xavier Rhodes, Cordarrelle Patterson 2014 – Anthony Barr, Teddy Bridgewater.

            From rounds 4 though 7 during that time the only players of note that they have drafted are Jairus Wright, Blair Walsh and Jeff Locke. Two kickers and a 3rd or 4th string WR.

            I think that is the kind of example that they were referring to.

            • JeffC says:

              Perhaps they feel the later round guys don’t have the me me me egos that the high picks have, so they have more potential to mold them into what they want them to be.

              • Volume 12 says:

                How are we supposed to find the next OBJ? We’ve seen how many of these 1st round picks are busts. The only thing separating say a Justin Britt going in the 2nd round compared to everyone saying he was a 5th rounder, is one team’s opinion.

                I disagree. While the 1st couple rounds may be for the majority of fans, I’m more interested in the mid rounds. Most NFL rosters are made up of those types of guys.

                • JeffC says:

                  They won’t find the next OBJ. That’s like trying to get another Lynch. They fall into your lap. My hope is they find a 6’4″ version of Doug Baldwin.

                  • Volume 12 says:

                    No, I know that. It was just an example, perhaps a bad example.

                    My point I failed miserably to get across was, just because a guy is a 1st round pick doesn’t mean he’s gold.

      • Meat says:

        I’d like a focus on diamonds in the rough and first tier talent too. The last couple drafts have not been as wonderful as I’d like, and the number of WR drafted with little success hurts.

  13. peter says:

    Dbs: Gunter, Swann, Rowe the loss of Maxwell, Simons uncertainty, and Lanes injury open up obvious holes for someone to join the LOB.

    I’m intrigued to see if Hunter really is as explosive as advertised and to see,why he wasn’t able to convert that to production. Right now when I see “scouts say ‘so and so is a unique specimen,” that doesn’t really do anything for me. Yep he’s tall and lean so he’s unique?

    I’m kind of stoked to see if Preston Smith or Owagbme flash a valued trait by the hawks like a super fast ten yard split, broad, etc.

    I’d like to see if Jesse James is going to bring it at the combine or if its just kind words from the training staff back at Penn State.

    I’m always interested to see the real weigh in results especially from guys like Arik Armstead, a whom host if db’s , WR’s, and TE’s.

    I’m looking forward to David Johnson RB results. He seems like a grinder in the mold Turbin, looks almost comically slow running but extremely fast catching, extremely being relative to a purported 230lb back. Regardless of Lynch for rotation, injury and special teams its probably time to set sail on Cmike.

    In that vein i am pretty bummed about Tevin Coleman though apropos that his pro comp is Darren McFadden and he’s starting is pro career with an injury.

    And finally every year there is one Jamie Collins, Martavis Bryant who lights it up out of no where and you have to scramble and figure out why they didn’t get on the field or shine more.

    • Volume 12 says:

      Keep an eye on North Dakota St HB John Crockett. His personality is very, very ‘Seahawky.’

      I too am bummed out about Indiana HB Tevin Coleman. He’s my favorite HB in this class right now, and I was really looking forward to this guy’s combine. Maybe this will drop him a bit? He would be such a devastating back in a ZBS.

  14. Spireite Seahawk says:

    I will be looking out for Darren Waller a 6′ 7″ 240lb WR from Georgia Tech.

    He doesnt have an amazing amount of catches but he seems very efficient and has 9 TD’s in 24 games.

    That size and frame must surely create mismatches and he must be Jimmy Graham like at TE?

    http://www.nfl.com/draft/2015/profiles/darren-waller?id=2552408

  15. Cysco says:

    The pass catching groups are going to provide the most intrigue and story lines for me. I can’t wait to see what Smith and Dorsett run and I’m even more curious to see them both in route drills.

    I can’t wait to see DGB in action and hear the rumors about his interviews.

    I want to see how athletic Maxx is (if he can’t match 27reps I think his stock is going to drop)

    How well will Funchess catch the ball and how badly will he destroy the rest of the TE group in the measurable drills?

    I want to see which, if any, of the round 2-3 WRs boost their stock.

    So many fun things to look out for. I can’t wait!

    • Ho Lee Chit says:

      Interviews are essential to DGB. He could repair the damage to his reputation or end up undrafted. Let’s hope he is getting some solid coaching on this prior to the Combine. It is far more important than any speed test on the field.

  16. Madmark says:

    There’s a guy Seattle signed at the end of the season that I’m curious to at camp next year Douglas McNeil. He’s a WR in the Area League that has Sydney Rice’s size at 6’4″ 200lbs. and he’s quick which you have to be on a smaller field. He quite a physical specimen with quick hands to snatch the ball out of the air. Another intriguing prospect of Seattle looking for talent outside of the normal channels.

  17. Ed says:

    Improve/replenish OL (okung/unger/sweezy) all done in next 2 years (carpenter already done)
    Improve/replenish WR/TE (miller/lockette/walter) gone and would take a 3/4 for kearse too
    Improve/replenish CB (Maxwell gone/Lane hurt/Simon disappointing
    Get pass rushing DT (Hill showed promise, need another)
    Get a PR/KR

    Would love to:

    Get Suh or Paea
    Get Sheard or Pierre-Paul
    Get Marshall or Jackson in trade
    Draft Dorsett or Smith (quick twitch WR that can return kicks)
    Draft Erving or Sambrillo (allows us to kick Britt to LG as option too)

    • Ed says:

      when i say done for OL, i mean contract is up and need to decide to pay more, or let go

    • peter says:

      I agree oline needs son help I’m just not sure that you take,a guy growing into the nfl who run blocks the way the team wants to and kick him inside to a position he only “played” as a second team member for say TY sambrailo who played LT and are,asking him to go play the right side and be an improvement coming from the mountain west over a guy with a year of experience in our system. I think its going to be easier to play Bailey in Carps or draft a Guard later.

      • Volume 12 says:

        Yeah, keep Britt at RT. Draft a LT and kick them inside to LG. LTs are the premier athletes on the O-line, draft them, and then worry about where to put them later. It’s a philosophy that JS learned from Ron Wolf, and the evidence says he’s stuck to that m.o.

        • peter says:

          No doubt, and again I’ve got no problem with sambraillo, but it be weird if our line is just former LT’s! Though I think that’s the direction they’re going

  18. Volume 12 says:

    2 other guys I’m interested in at the combine are as follows:

    If Texas A&M TE Cam Clear, who might be the biggest TE in this draft class at 6’5, 275 lb., runs a 4.7-4.75, watch out! He’s a blocking TE in the truest sense of the word, and if he shows off the athleticism I think he will, this dude could be a monster at the next level. I don’t think Seattle will take a TE before the 4th round, and I’m hoping it’s him.

    Stanford WR Ty Montgomery is so fascinating to me, I know, he’s inconsistent, has a case of the drops, but god damn what an athlete. IMO he’ll ace his interviews, and teams/GMs will fall in love with his character and personality. If Seattle is going to take a WR that has a high drop rate, it should be this kid.

    He reminds me of a Percy Harvin. By that I mean, he doesn’t really have a true position, but man what a weapon. And he helps out in the return game as well, and is an effective run blocker. Seattle could really use an offensive ‘chess piece’, and I suspect their going to be looking for that. Also think that Montgomery will put up an impressive SPARQ score.

    • sdcoug says:

      I strongly feel we will draft a WR (especially if we draft 2 WRs) that is dynamic in the return game. Hawks always talk about finding ways to improve any position on the roster, and boy was the return game lacking this year. When Tate left, I told my buddy we were going to miss him more than people were suggesting, especially his ability to pin ball and gain 15-20 yds on punt returns. Seems like he was able to flip the field so many times which obviously benefited the offense.

    • Greg haugsven says:

      A guy I’ve had my eye on also is Austin Hill. WR out of Arizona. Had a monstrous 2012 then tore his knee in 2013 and never really got going in 2014. Could be a good late round pick. Even Tyler Lockett, if just to return kicks. Our return game last year was atrocious. I just prayed everytime they wouldn’t fumble.

    • Carl says:

      I like Ty Montgomery as well. You know he could at least contribute on special teams as a rookie. IMO nothing wrong using a roster spot on someone just to be a PR/KR, not like Bryan Walters made any plays on offense, or in the return game for that matter.

      • Volume 12 says:

        I just think Ty Montgomery is such a tremendous athlete with a boatload of upside. He’s extremely mature, his body rivals that of HB Melvin Gordon, great return man, and really just an offensive weapon. He can do everything that Percy did for us, minus the selfishness and mutiny he started in the locker room.

        Montgomery is a guy I could see developing a promising relationship with RW, and ADB and Sherm will naturally gravitate towards him.

        He’s really the ideal type of receiver that Bevel seems to be missing. Jet sweeps, bubble/tunnel screens, quick hitters, etc. He can also take the top of a defense.

        • Jake says:

          I want to see his measurables, to see if he has the arm length, size, and explosiveness the team covets. I’m intrigued by his skill set and would possibly double up with a big guy early in the draft – i.e. Funchess, DGB or maybe a TE like Maxx Williams) if I thought Montgomery could be had for a 4th or 5th round pick. I think he’d be a great fit in Seattle as a 5th WR/offensive weapon and return specialist.

  19. AlaskaHawk says:

    I’m real curious to see how the tight ends do. Seems like once you get past the top 1 or 2 there are 15 tight ends that are about equal and could play (or not) in the NFL. What will distinguish them? Last years catch record is certainly important. How about speed – well usually the lighter guy is faster. Strength? Blocking ability? Lots to think about, and the combine may not give the answers. The good thing is that some will be available in the mid to late rounds. Just need to find the right one.

  20. matt509 says:

    Am I the only one that is ok with keeping Miller at TE? When he got hurt I started to miss his reliability each week. Good blocker in a run first team and someone you can truly trust to get a first down. I am not sure if replacing him with Cameron is the better option. I feel like we would be settling with a more unreliable but more explosive player with possible concussion problems. It’s the exact opposite of what Seattle needs on offense. I would love to draft someone like Clive Walford, who I think could be the next dynamic TE in the NFL, but am ok if we just settle with Miller next season barring he can stay healthy. I love the idea of drafting a prospect like Wes Saxton in the later rounds. What we need is a player that can be on the field every play as a #1 WR and get those jump balls whenever RW3 needs . Not someone at TE or someone like Percy who you need to gameplan for. He’s in on minimal downs.

    The only player i’d be willing to pay for is Julius Thomas. I think he’s way more versatile than Cameron. I truly believe Seattle could use Julius as their #1 target. They could use him as a blocking TE, substitute blocking FB, and Denver started using him more in the slot and lined up as a wideout. He would be all over the field.

    • Volume 12 says:

      Seattle is never going to have a ‘true’ no. 1 receiver. It’s going to be 5 WRs that get 3-5 targets a game.

      I think we’d all love to have TE Julius Thomas, but at what price?

      TE Jordan Cameron is appealing because of his size, he might be reasonably priced, because of his injury history, and PC does have a connection to him and is already familiar with what type of player he is.

      As much as I like TE Clive Walford, it wouldn’t shock me to see him not have a good combine. Now that obviously doesn’t mean he won’t be a good pro, but just something to keep in mind.

      • matt509 says:

        I don’t mean a true #1, but someone who is on the field every snap with size that we can rely on. He doesn’t have to be the #1 option. I just miss having Rice come out of nowhere and make a crazy play. Now it seems like RW3 is too cautious to make a play. Wilson extends plays so he’s able to look at all of his options. If we have the WR with size every snap he’s able to make more plays for Wilson. It’s obviously easier said than done as we have been trying desperately to find one.

        I agree with Clive not having a good combine. I don’t see him as the player to have breakout combine but you can clearly see his appeal on tape. I hope it doesn’t turn off Seattle and I can only hope it turns off other teams and allows him to fall to Seattle.

        All we could do with Julius is offer what we can and hope we can persuade him. We have salary now so why not front load a 2/3 year deal with a chance of making money now, getting a mega deal soon, and a chance of winning rings. The 3rd year would probably be optional. I would say it still comes with come consequences. If it happens Miller is probably gone and Lynch probably isn’t here. That’s why we are making a move.

        • AlaskaHawk says:

          With Millers injury history is going to be on the field much anymore, and he may be slow when he is on the field. Even though he is a veteran I think he has to prove he can make the team. Is he really any better then Willson or draft pick xxx? I’m not sure he is anymore.

        • SunPathPaul says:

          I would prefer Julius Thomas over Cameron. I’m just scared to lose Cameron late in the season due to injury…no play, no help!

          If we used J. Thomas “all over the field”, it sure would aid in reducing coverage on the other WR’s we have. I still hope and pray we draft at least 2 WR’s… maybe 3, and at least 1 TE…

          • matt509 says:

            That’s my main concern with Cameron. I love his ability but he feels like another move that will end up biting us in the ***. And it won’t be cheap either. It’s come with a lot of risks. I am so intrigued with the idea of J Thomas. I didn’t see it at first, but when I started watching Denver use him I started to notice his ability is off the charts. He’s not the guy who can cover every inch of the field and cause chaos for a team like Vernon Davis can or like a true #1 WR can. The thing he can do is take a game over using the middle of the field and cause mismatch along the line of scrimmage.

            The other thing I think teams will start doing is using TE in the slot. They are able to manhandle slot corners and use their body to work the middle of the field. Most of them are also better blockers and gives you basically another gap the defense has to account for. Just a pipe dream I guess. Lol

        • Volume 12 says:

          I see want your saying about the receivers. I just keep remembering PC saying that he likes to have a ‘basketball team’ as his WR core. I see ADB as the PG, P-Rich as the SG, Kearse as the SF, and Hardball as the C. So, who’s the PF and the 6th man? That’s just my take on it.

          I miss Sidney as well. He was one of my favorite players on this team.

          Not a fan of signing a FA if it comes at the expense of Beastmode. I know he can’t/won’t play forever, but until they have his 100% replacement, or a running back by committee they’re comfortable with, we absolutely need him.

      • David M2 says:

        Don’t think you’ll want him so much after reading this 12

        Report: Julius Thomas Turned Down Huge Deal from Broncos

        • matt509 says:

          We all knew he wanted that type of money. I stand pat with wanting a short deal. It has to give Seattle leverage though. If we need after a year or two we need to be able to cut ties before it hurts us too much. In the end he’s still getting a ton of money upfront and a chance of hitting a longterm deal in his prime with a ring. He missed out in Denver, probably won’t get one in Oakland, and won’t have a ton of luck after that. Seattle has a golden opportunity for him.

  21. j says:

    My biased self will be watching the Cougars. Vince Mayle, Xavier Cooper and Connor Halliday. All who I think have potential to be good pros.

    Particularly Mayle’s 40 time and vertical (as an ex basketball player). Seems to have the backstory we look for. Former JC basketball player, took a year off to care for his mother who was in a bad car accident. Only tried out for the JC football team after encouragement from his HS coaches, and now he is a mid-round guy.

    Cooper lacks length, but is athletic and plays with a high motor. Halliday has a lot of arm talent.

    Having players from your alma mater taken makes the draft more fun. Looks to continue next year with WR Dom Williams and OT Gunnar Eklund.

    • CharlieTheUnicorn says:

      Mayle is the guy to watch. He will most likely be a 4-6th round guy, but good upside imo.
      Halliday was a force when he was healthy, but injuries derailed him a tad. He needs to find a good home that will work with him as a 2nd or 3rd QB for a year or two. He can make the throws, but can he get stronger and survive an NFL beating. This is the question.

      • j says:

        He certainly is tough enough. As a freshman, played the entire second half of a game with internal bleeding. Orchestrated a comeback win. (The refs blew the call and it technically was a loss). Had to have the running back call the plays because he was in too much pain to talk. Was rushed to the hospital after the game and ended up out until spring football the next year.

        The flaw with him is the mental plays – he forces throws too much for my liking. Now – how much of that was bad habits developed by playing for terrible Cougar teams his freshman and sophomore years – that is the question.

        As for Mayle, I think he will surprise a few people draft wise. If he is available in the 4th round I’d rush up to the podium for him. Only knock is he lacks length, and has some technique issues with catching.

        • Volume 12 says:

          Wazzu WR Vince Mayle is definelty more and more interesting, Your right J, he does have the back-story that Seattle seems to like.

          Big fan of DT Xavier Cooper. Dude plays with his ‘hair on fire.’ Weird right, because he doesn’t have any hair.

          Personally I’m very excited to watch WR Dom Williams progress. He reminds me so much of WR Sidney Rice.

  22. Scott B. says:

    Not sure who is familiar with RotoViz, but they profiled Rasheed Bailey who is a small school WR (Delaware Valley College). I don’t think he is going to be at the combine, but he is working out at Villanova’s pro day. He is 6’2″ 205 and apparently runs mid 4.4 to 4.5. He put up some pretty insane stats over his college career, granted it was against little to no competition. The guy looks pretty solid though and has some good player comps (Kearse happens to be one). Sounds like a guy the Hawks would be interested in.

  23. UKhawk says:

    On top of your watch list, I’m interested in seeing performances of:
    DL
    G Jarrett
    C Covington
    N Orchard
    M Golden

    OL
    D Smith
    Oregon x 2 (Fisher, Grasu)
    Fsu x 3
    Okla x 2

    WR
    D Lewis
    Waller
    Smelter

    CB
    K Johnson
    D Smith
    J Glenn