2018 is Salvaging Carroll and Schneider’s Personnel Reputation: Part 1, Drafts

Right up until five weeks ago, the drafting reputation of Seahawks head coach Pete Carroll and general manager John Schneider had faded from Midas’ touch to fools’ gold.

Rewind to the end of last season and it’s easy to see why. As of that moment, of the entire previous two drafts, only a single Seahawks draftee – Shaquill Griffin – had cemented himself as an undisputed starter.

The rest was a mess. First pick Malik McDowell was sidelined…permanently, as it turned out. Jarran Reed, Nazair Jones, and Quinton Jefferson looked like decent rotational pieces on the defensive line, with Reed perhaps trending upwards the most, but that was it. Nick Vannett wasn’t doing much. Ethan Pocic was starting by default but the consensus was “Bulk up, sir”. C.J. Prosise was over in the blue tent doing his best Humpty-Dumpty impersonation. Chris Carson, despite an exciting September, had yet to prove doubters wrong about his durability (he had major injuries in high school and college – a large part of why he fell in the draft). The rest of the 2017 draft haul, aside from a few stray Amara Darboh receptions, was buried on the depth chart, while Alex Collins had escaped the quagmire to a stellar season in Baltimore.

And Germain Ifedi – well, we knew about him. Or thought we did.

One undisputed starter out of two drafts. That’s simply not a viable rate of return.

How quickly the tide can turn. The 2018 season hasn’t just turned around the Seahawks’ drafting fortunes with the best first-year returns far and away since 2012, it’s vindicating past drafts as well. Or it should be.

Two things are hard to beat: a narrative, and being spoiled. Seahawks fans are saddled with both. Changing the perception that Seattle’s drafting sucked wastewater for five years straight is like tacking an ocean liner, and it’s not helped by the fact that Pete Carroll and general manager John Schneider began their tenure here by knocking three straight drafts absolutely out of the park. The expectation is that they should be doing it repeatedly. Whether that’s possible, or fair to expect, is another discussion. But we’re definitely having to adjust to a “new normal”.

Well, nothing cures like winning. Seattle has won four of their last five in decidedly dominant fashion. That puts us on fertile ground for growing new narratives.

Visual aids are nice when it comes to getting the full picture of something. I wanted to take a shot at quantifying Carroll and Schneider’s drafting work by color-coding. Here’s their resume, broken down by year (sorry if it looks weird, just click on it – I’m bad at this).

We can see the hole right away. Pretending that Pete and John’s draft room work has been one long, unbroken streak of success is just that, pretending.

Yet I think I can argue that it’s not as bad as it was made out to be.

First is the 2013 draft. Seattle found three starters there, two of which promptly ended up on other teams. Luke Willson will forever hold a place in the twelves’ hearts for his knack for clutch plays in big games, but let’s not pretend this was a good draft.

However, 2013 was bad for everyone. It’s easily labeled the most talent-deprived year in recently NFL history. So…maybe a little slack for Pete and John there?

That brings us to 2014 and 2015. I can’t argue that it was good. But where it really hurt was depth. You need to be finding, if not starters, then some valuable backups and bit players in the late rounds, and while Seattle fans felt that guys like Richardson, Lockett, Britt, and Clark were middle-of-the-road starters at least, nobody after pick #2 in those years was with the team for very long. Pete and John did not replicate their usual magic of finding gold in the later rounds.

Now, there is the argument that it’s difficult to break onto a roster like the Seahawks’, which remained one of the NFL’s most indisputably talented rosters up through 2015. But countering that argument is the fact that none of these guys fought their way into the backup list either, or latched on anywhere else in the league. You’re always drafting for the future. You draft a Kevin Norwood hoping he can replace the void left by Golden Tate. You draft a Winston Guy hoping he can become another Kam Chancellor so that the team needn’t hand a crippling contract extension to an aging player out of lack of choice. You want the draft to be a steady conveyor belt of talent that ideally…ideally…gives the team constant flexibility in their negotiations with incumbent players.

Obviously, that didn’t happen.

Again…it is somewhat rich to expect Seattle to pull off 2010-2012 every year. That three-year span wasn’t normal. It was arguably one of the greatest drafting spans in NFL history. Three Pro Bowlers per year (if you include the undrafted Doug Baldwin) and seven viable starters to boot? Even the Patriots don’t do that.

But…they needed to be better than 2013-2017, too. Or at least that’s where opinion stood after the Bears game.

Enter the Cowboys.

Intelligence operatives are still working to discover exactly what got into the Seahawks as they played the ailing team from Texas, but it has jump-started an astonishing turnaround that is redeeming a lot of Pete and John’s drafting work.

All of a sudden, Clark, Britt, and Lockett aren’t just Pro Bowl subs and rumors – they’re worthy of prime position in the discussion (or would be, if 4-3 defensive ends ever were). Lockett got paid and got better; he’s having a career year. Clark you know about. Britt is part of an offensive line that is mauling the league’s premiere defensive linemen into the turf (check out this hilariously verbose praise-piling by Brian Baldinger – as obnoxiously obsessed as he was over our OL suck last year, his obsession is a good thing this year). Remember when we thought Britt was a man without a position and we never thought he’d amount to anything?

Vannett is a reliable catcher and has made noticeable improvements in his blocking. Jefferson is putting on the pressure. Hunt turned heads with his short spell of Britt. None of these guys are Pro Bowlers, but then again, they have only mid-round draft stock to live up to. For where they were picked, these are satisfactory returns.

Jarran Reed needs to start getting more credit. He already had an excellent report card for a second-rounder just for replacing Brandon Mebane’s run-stuffing ability from day one. But now he’s following Mebane’s trajectory in picking up pass rush moves. He had a big play to cause (or help induce) a Matthew Stafford fumble yesterday. These are game-changing – season-changing moments.

Moving further forward, 2017 seventh-rounders Chris Carson and David Moore have leaped onto the national stage. Carson would be getting more accolades if he had touchdowns to go with his frankly Lynchian production, but he’s healthy, and he’s the core of Seattle’s renewed identity. I was a believer in Carson last year. I don’t blame Seattle for paying out the nose for insurance in the form of Rashaad Penny, but Carson doesn’t just look good – he looks All-Pro worthy. Any moment now, you’re going to see things get even easier for him, as defenders start making “business decisions” when confronted with tackling him. Moore, for his part – four touchdowns in seven games goes a nice way towards replacing Jimmy Graham’s production. A tall order, satisfied.

Elsewhere in the draft, Shaquill Griffin still has the #1 corner position locked down. He’s had a handful of rough plays since his two picks of Mitch Trubisky in Week 2, but let’s also remember that every time you see a quarterback hesitate and not throw the ball after three seconds (and there was plenty of that yesterday), that’s Griffin and Tedric Thompson doing their jobs in coverage. Bad defensive backs get thrown at without hesitation (as Russell Wilson did yesterday). Thompson is still swinging off receivers’ hips like hula hoops a little more often than I’d like – though so did Earl Thomas – but he makes up for it with bruising hits and big plays. He’s got mental resilience. That’s a mark of a lasting contributor.


Perhaps no Seahawks player exemplifies the sharp 180-degree turn of this team than much-maligned Germain Ifedi. The man is having fun out there, steamrolling Pro Bowlers and gashing lanes for his running backs. Playing next to a frothing grizzly like D.J. Fluker can’t hurt, nor can getting paired with tight-end-convert sensation George Fant (watch him seal his edge on Chris Carson’s TD yesterday like Michaelangelo painting the Sistine Chapel). And you have to acknowledge the contribution of Mike Solari. But it took perseverance from Ifedi to stick with it, and persevere he did. It’s amazing what some confidence can do for a guy.

This is to say nothing of the 2018 draft, which from Week 1 has produced three undisputed starters, two legitimate depth guys from the late rounds (Jamarco Jones being one of them – watch for him next year), and three others who still have oodles of promise and plenty of development time before they should be getting any rightful criticism.

So we come to the question…just how badly did Seattle’s draft room really stumble in the Carroll era?

Not nearly that badly, for not nearly that long.

It was rough for a while. Recent years are not without their warts. Ethan Pocic and Nazair Jones have been played off the field, albeit by other guys that Pete and John acquired. C.J. Prosise’ injury doom was a gamble Pete and John lost. McDowell was a questionable pick for reasons that had little to do with his eventual injury (though, again, it’s an understandable selection when you remember that his upside was Calais Campbell).

But the value of better coaching and simple time is invaluable. We had some late bloomers and some head cases, yes. They’re playing well now. If a stumble invalidates genius, then even Bill Belichick sucks. And the spreadsheet that I showed above still has room for blue on the right side as time passes.

Guys, I have a sneaking suspicion that Pete and John are still pros at this drafting thing. And they’re reaping the rewards now. It’s time the narrative ship finished its tack.




  1. Rob Staton

    This is great work by Brandon. Fantastic read and some on-point observations about Seattle’s recent draft history.

    PCJS getting it done.

    • cha

      Agree. Nice writeup.

      So I am guessing the Part 1 portends there is more to come? Looking forward to it!

      • Brandon J. Adams

        We still have to look at their free-agent and trade history. I think that, like their draft history, there is more to be said for their efforts there than is being said. Though the free agent pickups score the worst for sure.

        • Drew

          Hopefully you’ll look at UDFA’s as well!

          • Kemoarps

            Hard agree here. UDFA have always been a significant portion of PCJS approach to the draft and securing talented players who didn’t hear they name called for one reason or another has been a cornerstone for this regime.

  2. Coleslaw

    I’d like to see a chart for all PC/JS drafts that tracks where we pick in the order, relative to the ‘depth’ of the class. We’ve killed it picking late in deep drafts, and when picking early. I’d argue the bad drafts should be attributed much more to picking late in bad drafts than PC/JS being incompetent.

  3. Barry V

    Enjoyable write up again, Brian!

    Also hate to be the bearer of bad news but I thought, while the world was ending a few weeks back Brian Schottenheimer couldn’t call a game?

    • Brandon J. Adams

      I feel that Brian Schottenheimer is to run-first, play-action schemes what John DeFilippo is to pass-first offense. This might be the best setup he’s had in his entire career personnel-wise…a head coach who likes what he’s good at, a bruising lead back with diverse skill sets backing him up, a championship-caliber OL, and Russell Wilson. That’ll make any OC look good, but give credit to Schotty. Defenses are playing us back on their heels.

  4. Barry v

    Sorry *Brandon*

  5. Troy

    This article was so well done I thought it was written by you Rob!

    Nice work Brandon, the 2013 draft was shit but so was the case for everyone else. 2014-2015 nailed a few players but you are right depth is where they cratered.

    So really out of all drafts, 2010-2018, only 3 you could point to and say they could do better, and 3 out of 9 that isn’t bad. With 3 being out of this world, and the last 3 I would argue as being good to very good.

    • Kemoarps

      The problem with those three problematic drafts is that they were back to back to back, so the donut hole came out all at once, combined with some significant injury issues.
      Just think how different it would be if the staggering had been alternating instead of bunches like that.

  6. DC

    Looking to the 2019 draft while referencing our current roster once again brings us to the DL. Reed & Ford look to have the 1 tech &/or NT set for the long haul. Clark will be kept at all costs. The most obvious spots to upgrade in terms of additional pass rush are at 3 tech & the ‘other’ DE spot. Is this the deepest DT class since…. ever? Free Agency might determine which direction the Hawks lean. Combine that with some form of the obligatory trade down from our original draft slot &…

    Right now my guess is that if it’s a DT #1 it will be Notre Dame’s Jerry Tillery. If it’s a DE #1 it will be Boston College’s Zach Allen.

    • Adam B.

      I’m with the crowd that sincerely believes ’19 will be a “Defense heavy” free-agency and draft for PCJS.
      They’ve shored up almost the entirety of the offensive needs, and barring a unique player being readily available, I just don’t see any priority needs on that side of the ball.

      I fully expect the Seahawks to double down in free agency and the draft at DT, Edge and/or safety.

    • C-Dog

      Seems like Reed has been shifting more into 3 tech responsibilities after they cut Tom Johnson, and has played pretty well there. Would never knock adding another DT early, but I wonder if edge ends up being the bigger priority.

      • FresnoHawk

        Mulled that over in my mind too. I love Deon Jordan because he will over achieve in performance VS the risks & $$ we pay him. Also Pete & John have relied on cheap FA acquisitions and had great success doing it. I think we’re going to bring back every one on cheap contracts and low risks contracts because the roster is strong. I think we target 3 Tech in 2019 draft not sure what round that will be.

  7. Adam B.

    Excellent write-up, though I do have to take a little issue with JaMarco Jones getting “starter” status without a pro-game snap.

    Honestly though, it’s hard to get a read on any draft pick for at least a year or two (Britt and Ifedi are two great examples you bring up) and it’s apparent with how many players from past drafts (even the successful ones) that have washed out. With that in mind, I personally would classify almost everyone from this year’s draft as “Jury is out” players–though Dissly, Flowers and Dickson especially have shown good things.

    • Brandon J. Adams

      Fair criticism about Jones. But he was looking good enough to envision him at least making the roster and sticking around for a while, which is decent return for a low pick and better than anything in the Day 3 hauls from 2014-2015.

    • McZ

      Jones is no starter as long as Brown is. We need to come over this “draft a starter” thinking. We draft for depth and eventual replacement. In this, Jones is a legit contender.

      • Brandon Adams

        “Future” starter, then. Man, tough crowd.

  8. Isaac

    I am starting to wonder if Russell plays better throwing less? Is this good or bad? Is he the equivalent of Alex Smith? The ultimate game manager. With Russell coming up on a contract year does a year like this decrease his value?

    • GerryG

      On this team, with this personnel and coaching staff that is true.

      Not sure that would be the case in New Orlenes, LC, LAR…If Jared Goff can look like an All pro at times, pretty sure Russ could too.

    • Del tre

      Russell Wilson is Alex Smiths superior in every way possible he literally has doubled Alex Smith in TDs this season. I’ll tell you this much the Patriots, the Packers, even the Rams would all of to have the QB only pass 17 times for 3 tds and a perfect passer rating. That is elite level production that every team wants.

    • C-Dog

      I think Russell Wilson is far better player than Alex Smith. I think Russell is aided by a run game because he is arguably the best play action quarterback in the league, and when defenses have to plan for taking away the run, they can’t key on Russell in the pocket as much. He’s probably the one QB in the league that most needs a run game, but when he gets it, he’s one of the most lethal.

      I would argue that this sort of offense increases his value because teams can know see again just how good he is when aided by a committed running attack. 14/17 248 yds 3 TDs 0 INTs and a perfect 153.8 QB rating is ridiculous.

      • McZ

        He was lethal even without a run game. Having no run game cut his playing time by a full 6 minutes year-over-year, because he couldn’t control the clock.

        • GerryG

          ^^^really good point

        • C-Dog

          Terrific point.

    • GerryG

      Be interesting to see how the run/pass splits evolve over the season.

      Last two games were super heavy on the run due to the big leads and the other teams inability to stop it. Pete always preaches balance, so you would expect in a tighter game closer to 50-50.

      I’m really interested as well to see what happens when a team can successfully limit their run game (someone will) and if they can do it without stacking 8 in the box (I doubt it). How does the Schotty pass game respond?

  9. cha

    A general question out there for draft class pieces like this.

    It seems like most of the time whenever I read a recap of past drafts and a discussion of successes or failures, most pieces don’t even bother to mention the UDFA class, or if they do it’s barely a footnote as if it “doesn’t count.”

    I’m not criticizing you specifically Brandon, I just see it a lot. Why is that? Is that because most teams don’t get much out of their UDFA’s?

    The Hawks have made a cottage industry out of mining for gold in the UDFA market and that absolutely needs to be factored into any PCJS roster-building discussion.

    You’ve got starters aplenty. Baldwin, Lockette, Kearse, Shead, Ron Parker, Cooper Helfet, Alvin Bailey, Brock Coyle, Thomas Rawls, George Fant, and now Poona Ford are a few that have come from UDFA.

    • Doug

      Great article but I agree with the comment about UDFAs generally.

      Also, I think by the end of the season we will have some good data on Penny. A Penny saved and all that.

    • Brandon J. Adams

      Not because I undervalue the UDFA’s at all (I did make mention of Baldwin).

      I suppose it’s just harder to quantify because there’s no collateral involved. There’s a certain expectation out of draft picks because there’s only so many to go around. Not the case with UDFA’s, or at least not in the same way.

      • cha

        Thanks for the reply. Those are fair points.

        My argument for UDFA inclusion stems from those players may not be part of the draft, but for sure are part of the draft CLASS. The Hawks in particular have been extremely effective at recruiting and utilizing UDFAs. Even at their most loaded, they still found roster room and had varying degrees of success. This has created a nice landing place for more sought-after UDFAs. And for certain this has had a significant impact on their draft strategy and their utilization of draft picks.

  10. Ukhawk

    What about Fant, when is he due and extension??

    • GerryG

      It’s his third year and he was an udfa, so I think he becomes RFA next year.

    • Jacob

      When is he getting a pass target? I was cracking up every time the Hawks split him out wide in Detroit. I can’t wait until they put him out there in a bunch formation and run the bubble screen.

  11. CK

    Love the visual aid! I had thought maybe the recent drafts were better, nice to see it laid out.

    I think Glow gets a yellow too. Believe he’s starting for Indy (at least last week – not sure if he is on injury fill-in duty or a starter.)

  12. FresnoHawk

    If you toss out last year Seahawk Free Agent acquisition have been excellent during Pete’s tenure. Overall I think both Carroll and Schneider are getting better at their jobs they continue to learn and grow, are motivated and excited, spreading it throughout the organization.

  13. McZ

    For all purposes, there should be another category on top of the occasional pro bowler. HoF candidates like Richard Sherman, Earl Thomas or Russell Wilson.

    • Drew

      Add Bobby Wagner to that list as well. Don’t think Kam will make it just because he didn’t have the stats or the All-Pro’s, but he would be in consideration. Marshawn will be really close to the HOF. That’s a total of 6 potential HoF players acquired in 3 years. Insane.

  14. Trevor

    Nice write up!

    The Hawks biggest need seems to be Edge rusher to me. They don’t have the draft capital to acquire one via trade. Would it be worth taking a low cost flier on street FA Junior Gallette? Just as a rotational giu to play 10-12 snaps a game as a 3rd down pass rusher. He has had off field issues so pending the background work obviously.

  15. Trevor

    My way too early top 5 wish list for the Hawks in Rd #1 this year.

    1)Burns (Edge/ FSU)
    2)Clelin Ferrel (DE/Clemson)
    3)Christian Wilkins (DT/Clemson)
    4)Jacia Polite (Edge/Florida)
    5)Raekwon Davis (DT/ Alabama)
    6)Devin White (LB/ LSU)
    7) Zach Allen( DE / BC)
    8)Rashan Gary (DL/ Mich)
    9) Dre’Mont Jones (DE / Ohio St)
    10) Noah Fant (TE/ Iowa)

    • zxvo3

      Jachai is #1 on my list since I feel like he’s the most likely to be in our drafting range

    • Volume12

      Not a fan of Kentucky’s Josh Allen Trev?

      • D-OZ

        I am…

      • Trevor

        I completely forgot about him Vol. I really like him a lot. He also seems like a good leader and has produced in he SEC when teams game plan for him as the true playmaker on that Kentucky defense. His combine will be really important but love his game.

        I like both Allen’s a lot and think Zach Allen is going to be a steal for someone too.

  16. Kenny Sloth

    Brandon, can I catch your work anywhere else? Really incisive stuff

  17. C-Dog

    It’s official. The league is suspending Mychal Kendricks 8 games counting games already missed. Kendricks can start practicing with the team again the day after the Rams game.

    Huge bonus for Seattle as the second half of the season approaches.

    • Isaac

      What position will he play with K.J. and Bobby in?

  18. Tyler Jorgensen

    McDowell was a bad pick then, in hindsight a worse pick. Hated it, regardless of ceiling, because there was too much probability of him never reaching the ceiling due to his lack of maturity and discipline. When anyone says “could have happened to anyone” I counter with, “When it happened, did it surprise you WHICH Seahawk it happened to? I think you could have told someone who didn’t know, by putting 5 names in and say choose who you think got hurt stupidly on his own time and virtually everyone would have put him in the 5 if they were guessing, and would pick him from the 5.

    Also, Jamarco Jones still has a long way to go to be quantified as anything but a prospect. I know some people love him, but he’s essentially an unathletic big-man, and I question if he can adjust to NFL level edge rushers.

    Those contentions aside, I thought this was a great article, and I’ve been arguing a while that we’ve done better than most give credit for in the draft.

    • Del tre

      Thomas Rawls committed grand larceny, there have been plenty of seahawks draftees with sorted pasts, McDowell didn’t even have a suspension on record. McDowell was 20 of course he was immature. You’re acting like a freak accident was bound to happen and that this was obvious. Yes it could have happened to anyone, things go wrong, PC wants his players to live their lives, this is a part of that. A really unfortunate part, but to suggest anyone would have seen this coming a mile away for the reasons you say is ridiculous. Maybe if he were constantly getting suspended like Randy Gregory on the Cowboys that would be valid, but that wasn’t what happened, and we can be frustrated with the pick but the truth is that could have happened to anyone we drafted. For goodness sake Darren McFadden broke his elbow dropping his phone, i wish we could have picked someone else and you can argue that the club video was something we could have seen coming, but to say what you’re saying is a step too far. The seahawks took a risk on someone with maturity issues, not someone who was at high risk for ATV collisions.

      • Hawk Eye

        agreed “From the Three”
        giving million dollar contracts to young kids who feel invincible? what could go wrong?
        McDowell was as likely to get hurt on an ATV as half the draft, maybe have the league.
        shit happens, it was an “accident” not an “intentional”

        What was worse is the CB Washington signed this offseason for $20 mill+ and then he failed the physical because he got hurt on his ATV. McDowell was the first one, so we can see how he did not see the danger.
        The 2nd guy must have known the danger and did it anyways.

      • AlaskaHawk

        I disagree with the premise that these kids who are UNDER CONTRACT can go do whatever they want in whatever condition of sobriety they want. Some activities are just more risky. I can’t tell you how many people I have known who have died on motorcycles and 3 or 4 wheelers. But, but, but I did it and was just fine you say. So what = there is still a large percentage of people who get injured or die on those rigs. Ben Rothlesburger almost died on a motorcycle, you know what I thought about it? What a knuckle head.

        I am adamantly opposed to such risky behavior, and I certainly would not want to pay for their rehab and throw millions away on someone that will never play football.

        • Gnarlyhawk

          If you can’t tell us, then why are you telling us? It’s hard for me to forget accidents where I have lost friends. Particularly friends I have lost to motorcycles. I am 46, I have history. I know many riders. I have lost 2, a couple riding together hit by a drunk driver in Florida, late at night. This was in 94. Only one person hurt from an ATV, no helmet. Happened before I met him, terrible scarring. How have you lost so many, that you forget them?

    • FresnoHawk

      Missing on 1st round picks is what kills teams! Trading out of the 1st round is a way to avoid it for Patriots & Seahawks. Failing in the 2nd round is manageable.

  19. Tecmo Bowl

    Great write up Brandon! By and large agree with your well reasoned points. Look forward to part 2…is it another trilogy? 😉

  20. cha

    Hawks get more stocked on defense. PFT is reporting Kendricks’ suspension is 8 games including “time served” so he can be back for the TNF Green Bay game.

  21. Volume12

    That was a dope piece. Thought it was Rob 100%.

    Eagles get Golden Tate for a 3rd. lol

    • Kenny Sloth

      Saaame 100% good stuff again, Brandon

  22. cha

    Schefter says Hawks cut Brandon Marshall.

  23. Hawk Eye

    Rams getting Dante Fowler

    they don’t mind the bad boys, let’s see how it all pans out.

    • Forty20

      Fowler barely produced on the loaded Jacksonville defensive line, wonder if it will be different at LA. A 2019 3rd and a 2020 5th could end up a hefty overpay for a half-season rental as well.

      • Hawk Eye

        they could end up in trouble with trading away a lot of draft picks and paying their guys at the top of the market also. Donald, Gurley and Cooks all making top money, Goff will want the same next year.
        Peters not playing well, and with him, Suh, Talib and now Fowler, they have some guys that can take a locker room south in a hurry
        They know they have to win now, because it probably won’t last

  24. Kip Earlywine

    I agree with almost everything here, but I do wonder, is this article being written if Cable/Bevell/Richard are still here? I’m guessing not. It’s the same thing with snakebit franchises like Cleveland. Are they really that bad in the draft, or is it just bad coaching and ownership?

    Whatever the reason, it seems whatever dark cloud hung over this team’s talent development for the better part of 5 years has finally lifted.

  25. Aaron

    Looks like the only Hawks move before the deadline was to release Marshall. A wise move given his low cap hit and being taken over quickly on the depth chart. Glad they didn’t give up their already limited draft capital for a player. If anything, we need more draft picks in 2019 not less. As for the Rams getting another pass rusher, I can’t wait to run it down their throats and beat them at home in two weeks. What we got cookin’ now I ain’t afraid of nobody!

  26. teejmo

    The Rams picked up what could very well turn out to be a half-year of Dante Fowler for a third this upcoming draft and a fifth the next after…

    They really aren’t looking much into the future, are they?

    • cha

      They’re going all-in to sell seat licenses for the new stadium. They’re competing with the Galaxy, Dodgers, Angels, Ducks, Kings, Lakers, Clippers, Bruins and Trojans.

      • SeaHusky

        LA will always be a Laker and Dodgers town; even if the Rams win a Superbowl, I don’t see them surpassing either of those aforementioned teams in consistent popularity. LA is a very fickle sports town in that the fans are extremely fair-weathered and simply won’t attend a sporting event if the team is struggling.

        Just look at how the attendance for the Trojans has dropped off of a cliff.

    • Volume12

      They’re trying to win a SB NOW, not stash draft picks that would have a hard time cracking that roster anyways. They just addressed their biggest weakness.

    • Volume12

      Stash might be the wrong word.

    • dylanlep

      This could set up well for us to own the division again soon. 2019 we will be in good space cap wise, young but still with a talented roster. Rams will have to be shedding.

    • DC

      How many draft picks do the Seahawks have in the 2019 draft again??? Hmmmm…

      The Rams smell blood in the water and are going for it. Otherwise what is the point? The only team that manages to win Super Bowls and stay in orbit is NE. Everyone else comes back down to Earth.

      • McZ

        Because they can afford to test out players in their piss poor division. I don’t think, any other team can replicate the Pats success. And honestly, I pray every day for Gase kicking out Tannehill, and get their act together on defense.

    • Rob Staton

      Their approach doesn’t appear to have much in the way of thinking beyond 2019.

      Will be interesting to see if it pays off… and where they are in three years.

    • John_s

      They’ll still be in good position as far as draft picks go.

      They’re getting two 3rd comp picks this next draft. They have the following free agents, Ndamakung Suh, LaMarcus Joyner and Dante Fowler who could sign big money contracts and get a high comp pick.

      • charlietheunicorn

        The comps would be in the 2020 draft however.

        • John_s

          They’re getting comp picks the next draft for Sammy Watkins and trumaine Johnson

    • McZ

      If the Rams repeat their 2018 draft, why the heck should they need more draft picks? They did comparatively well, starting late 3rd round.

  27. Forty20

    Seattle have moved up to #6 overall in Football Outsider’s DVOA rankings. We possess the #2 ranked defence (!!!), just behind the Bears, along with the #18 offence and #17 special teams.

    Carroll and Norton Jnr have done a spectacular job to date this year with an undermanned pass rush unit (Clark starting the year underdone with hand surgery, Jordan and Green banged up) and a rejigged secondary. Clint Hurtt probably deserves some love as well with Reed emerging as one of the premier DTs in the league.

    The stunning success and speed of the retooling process leads me an interesting, albeit probably premature, question…given our dire lack of picks this year, do we suddenly have any surplus pieces that might attract some mid or later round picks when we get closer to the draft? Ethan Pocic, Naz Jones, CJ Prosise and Delano Hill come to mind as potential trade bait.

    • Old but Slow

      The Detroit game strongly emphasized the importance of the run game for the defense. The Lions with Johnson and Blount can pound you or run around you, and they could do neither. Against a rebuilding defense. Or, maybe it is already built pretty well.

  28. Dale Roberts

    Every time Delino Hill comes on the field I think OMG here comes a big play… the bad way. Hill just looks lost and I don’t understand why they haven’t picked up a more capable backup. Anybody else see this or am I wrong?

  29. charlietheunicorn

    I’ll echo Rob’s comment above. The RAMS know they are in a win now mode…..
    The QB is in year #2 and is still cheap. They loaded up on talent on short term or 1 year deals…. and why not take advantage of a relatively weak NFC this year. You’ve got perhaps 4-5 teams with a realistic shot at the SB…. and I would not count the Packers in anymore, since they are bleeding players and appear to be moving in the wrong direction.

    So, if you have a chance to get a SB, you go for it. I don’t fault them for it, but they will be in a bind next year.. with salary cap and comp pick considerations involving their own players and other FAs.

    I at first thought the Fowler move was legit, but the more I read and hear about him….. they gave up a nice haul of draft picks for the guy … who has been underwhelming so far.

    • Rob Staton

      Goff’s actually in year three —- so they’ll be making him the highest paid QB in the league (or moving on) within 18 months.

      • SeventiesHawksFan

        Yes true. But the Ram’s personnel choices all seem quite rational to me. Win the SB. Decide afterward who to keep. Some players will have to go.

        They may be smarter than we were though. We let Clinton McDonald, Chris Clemons and Walter Thurmond (and Golden Tate and Giacomimi)?go to keep Percy Harvin. Keeping just Clinton McDonald (or Clemons) and Thurmond probably would have meant a win in the SB when Lane and Avril went out. Instead they kept the barely driven Lomborghini over the still very good luxury but daily driven Land Rovers they had to choose from.

        The Rams will be able to choose the what players don’t meet the cost / value proposition.

        • Rob Staton

          I think it remains to be seen whether they’re plan is right or not. There’s nothing wrong with aggressively going after a SB. And they worked the comp pick rules perfectly to make up for some of their future losses (eg letting Watkins walk but only signing cut players like Suh/Talib or trading for players like Peters).

          That said, they are going to hit a wall in a year when they pay Goff. By that point Goff, Donald and Gurley will be the three highest paid players at their respective positions and Cooks is earning a fortune too. And they will lose a LOT of players. And they won’t have much draft stock to replenish. So short term, they are very good. 2-3 years down the line they might be very, very, very reliant on a handful of players. And Goff is no Rodgers, Brady, Wilson, Brees, Rivers etc.

          • SeventiesHawksFan

            You understand their cap structure and personnel decisions better than I do. I suppose the real question is the value they assign to Goff. He seems a capable but replaceable placeholder to me. Will McVay believe he has a better chance retaining their skill and difference making players outside of Goff, because his scheme will work with *most* passably competent QB’s? Or will they shell out 30 plus for Goff? I’d lean toward retaining talent outside of Goff and McVay will find and win with a variety of Kirk Cousins or better QB’s myself. But that’s on the presumption that McVay possesses exceptional scheming and coaching ability that can win with a variety of QB’s. But he does not have the ability to coach his way out of deficient defensive talent.

            • Rob Staton

              It’ll be fascinating to see what their plan is at QB long term.

  30. Jarrett

    The chart has a few errors. Giving Joey Hunt, Jamarco Jones, and Jacob Martin green is too optimistic. Jefferson seems like more of a yellow as well. Giving these players green is putting them at the same level as Byron Maxwell, Bruce Irvin, Walter Thurmond, and Shaquill Griffin, and they’ve simply not shown nearly enough to be compared to players of that caliber.

    (On a side note, I think Mark Glowinski should be yellow. He was a starter for a year here and even though he wasn’t good he wasn’t a total disaster, and now he’s starting in Indy.)

    • Whit21

      I was looking through all the posts to see if anyone else noticed Rob didn’t add Glowinski as yellow.. Always thought he was a decent guard.. A little like John Moffit. He wasnt flashy but when he played over Sweezy, the offense seemed to be more efficient. Moffit was just always injured in some way.

      I think glowinski is the same.. If he gets paired with a decent tackle.. He can do fine. Except now at right guard DJ fluker has elevated Ifedis play and having Sweezy with Dwayne Brown makes up for his shortcomings in pass protection.. Works out way better.

      • Rob Staton

        Just a quick heads up this is Brandon’s great piece not mine

        • Whit21

          My apologies.. Assumed it was written by you.

  31. millhouse-serbia

    What happened yesterday shows once again that safety position is the least valuable position in NFL at the moment.
    Giants asked for 2nd round pick for Collins and they only get 3rd round pick offer. Collins is 24y old and pro bowl 2016, 2017 and all pro 2016.
    GB traded HaHa Clinton for 4th round pick. He is 25y old and 2016 pro bowl and 2nd team all pro.

    30 year old WR who wasn’t pro bowl since 2014 goes for 3rd round.

    • Rob Staton

      Yep. And Seattle found out the hard way about the safety trade market.

    • Georgia Hawk

      And I think Earl is about to find out the hard way the market isn’t what HE thought either

    • AlaskaHawk

      My prediction is that he will have too much ego to take a big pay cut. Considering the market and his leg injury, it will probably be more like Sherman’s contract, a low base with incentives. Anyway = my early prediction is that he will retire by the end of this season or end of next season.

    • Dale Roberts

      Will Earl get us that 3rd round comp pick?

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