Curtis Allen’s off-season positional reviews: LB

This is the ninth part of a guest-post series written by Curtis Allen

#9 linebackers

Players under contract for 2021: Bobby Wagner, Jordyn Brooks, Cody Barton, Ben Burr-Kirven

Players under contract for 2022: Bobby Wagner, Jordyn Brooks, Cody Barton, Ben Burr-Kirven

Restricted Free Agents: Shaquem Griffin

Unrestricted Free Agents: K.J. Wright, Bruce Irvin

Exclusive Rights Free Agents: none

Practice Squad/Futures Candidates: none

Salary Cap Notes

2021 Cap Commitment: $21.9 million (12.5% of cap)

Bobby Wagner: $9.65m of $17m cap number non-guaranteed ($7.5m cap hit if cut or traded)

2020 Season Overview

The linebackers were clearly the centerpiece of the defense in 2020.

The Seahawks had Bobby Wagner in the first season of a market-setting contract at MIKE, resisted any thoughts of renegotiating or cutting KJ Wright and his $10m cap number at WILL, signed Bruce Irvin to play the SAM and flex to the edge in pass-rushing situations and drafted Jordyn Brooks with their first pick in the draft.

Cody Barton, Shaquem Griffin and Ben Burr-Kirven were also there.

Free agent acquisition Bruce Irvin was brought back into the fold and with his size and athletic profile was touted by Pete Carroll as ‘the perfect SAM’. Unfortunately, he tore his ACL in the second game of the season and was out for the year.

It was a blow to the defense but in a way, the injury turned out to be a blessing in disguise.

K.J. Wright was moved over to SAM and then back to WILL in nickel and performed marvelously. It began as a shift back to an old position but quickly blossomed into an opportunity to affect the play of the opposing offense from a different area.

We witnessed several great plays from him:

– Defending multiple passes in the Miami game

– Skying for a crazy interception in the Minnesota game

– Blowing past two hapless blockers on a screen in the first Arizona game to make a tackle

– Tap-dancing with Kyler Murray on a read option and stopping him for a loss on third down in the second Arizona game

Wright started the year as questionable to even be on the roster come September, as he had shoulder surgery and the Seahawks had drafted a linebacker in round one.

That $10m in cap savings was a juicy target as the Seahawks waited and waited and waited on pass rush help. It was an expensive season but no doubt it was a great season for Wright. If it is his last season in blue and green, Wright will have finished his Seahawks career on a high note.

Jordyn Brooks had a rough start. He was a head-scratching pick for Seattle but was highly praised by the front office after the draft. Unfortunately, he did not get the benefit of rookie camp or a full training camp due to the shortened offseason.
He was talked up as a potential K.J. Wright replacement in his rookie year but that never materialized. DC Ken Norton Jr noted in camp that Brooks ‘still has a long way to go.’

In the early going, getting on the field was tough. Then he got hurt and missed two games of action. When he returned though, he immediately took his spot on the defense and with time began to show flashes of why he was drafted so high. Knifing through blockers to make tackles and quickness around the edges were just what the Seahawks ordered after expressing disappointment in that area after the previous season.

Blowing up George Kittle attempting a run block and then tackling the ball carrier in Week 17 against San Francisco really got Seahawks fans reminiscing about the LOB days.

Cody Barton got stuffed into a locker with Brooks coming into town but got a chance to step in when Brooks got hurt in the early part of the season and an opportunity existed to perhaps keep the rookie on the bench with some good performances. He could not manage it.

Barton looked out of position, unsure of himself and lacked aggression, not unlike his rookie season. The play in the Minnesota game where he squarely met the ball carrier and then got driven for another five yards pretty much sums up his Seahawks career at linebacker to date. He did find a way to make himself useful on special teams though.

The fever dream of Shaquem Griffin being any kind of pass rush help has broken.

Ben Burr-Kirven only got 10 snaps on defense in 2020, mopping up in the Jets blowout in Week 14.

Bobby Wagner had another very good year. He earned a high grade from PFF and All-Pro honors for his play.

His best game of the year was easily Week 7 against San Francisco. He played that game on another level of aggression. Angry Bobby recorded two sacks, four pressures, two QB knockdowns and eleven tackles.

On one of his sacks, he rushed in and took on two blockers. He plowed into them and knocked them both to the ground like bowling pins and then had the presence of mind to get up and trip Garoppolo’s feet for the sack. It was a sight to behold.

Chasing Zach Ertz 40 yards downfield and making a fingertip breakup of a pass in Week 12 against Philly demonstrated some fantastic closing speed and a range not all middle linebackers have.

Another highlight was engineering the defense for the winning play at the goal line against New England in Week 2. His vision, knowledge and trust in his teammates coalesced for a beautiful moment in a game the Seahawks could have easily lost.

But it was not an easy year. In fact, 2020 might have been the toughest season in Wagner’s pro career. It could be argued that no one on the Seahawks was asked to do more in 2020 than Wagner – Russell Wilson included.

Consider the defensive support he was playing with. Or more accurately, his lack of support:

– A shambles of a defensive line that could not get pressure with the front four and struggled to keep him clean

– His unit being hit with injuries – particularly Irvin and Brooks. His top lieutenant had to flex over to a new position, then he was playing with Cody Barton and then breaking a rookie in for the balance of the season

– A defensive backfield that was constantly rotating injured players in and out and could not give very good run support

– Needing to account for a strong safety blitzing on about 12-15% of his snaps instead of the 1-2% he’s worked with his entire career

– Blitzing far more than he ever had before
– Working with a scheme that struggled to get off the field on third downs.

The result? He had career highs in defensive snaps, times targeted by quarterbacks AND number of blitzes. Now that is a workload.

He frequently was seen pre-snap gesticulating wildly to his teammates, after spotting trouble and trying to alert them and get them properly positioned. More than in previous seasons.

The first few weeks of the season, when the defense was giving up record yards and they were winning games by the skin of their teeth, Wagner’s post-game conferences were often the only beacon of truth from the team about the state of the defense.

Pete Carroll would be pumped and talking about how he ‘frickin loves these last-minute wins.’ Then Bobby would wearily take the podium and bluntly tell reporters he cannot take any joy in the win because the defense put them in the position of cutting it so close.

Fans became growingly concerned that Wagner had lost a step and was being visited by his own mortality. He certainly did not have the number of game-changing plays that was typical for him.

Combine that with being the highest-paid linebacker in the league and this is a lot of weight for a player to carry.

It was obvious Wagner was holding the defense together with both hands and it was occupying more of his attention than ever before.

Offseason Questions to Address

1. What will the linebackers’ role in this defense be in 2021?

Trivia question. Name the player the Seahawks most frequently blitzed in 2020.

Jamal Adams and his 98 blitzes? Close, but no.

The Seahawks blitzed Bobby Wagner 100 times in 2020.

That is up nearly 50% from the 71 times he blitzed in 2019.

That is up nearly 50% from the 41 times he blitzed in 2018.

Sensing a pattern here?

K.J. Wright counted for 72 blitzes in 2020 as well, also a career high as he moved over to the SAM spot.

A stat I did not mention about Wagner’s brilliant Week 7 game against San Francisco: he blitzed an incredible 17 times in that game, taking on some of the injured Jamal Adams’ blitzes.

Several times this season, the Seahawks sent two blitzers on plays.

Many of those times, the Seahawks used their $17million linebacker as an A-gap decoy so their two-first-round-picks strong safety could get free in order to generate pass pressure.

That is just a quick illustration of the scheme cost of the front office not paying proper attention to building a real defensive line.

The Seahawks really hit the trifecta in 2020: they twisted their scheme like taffy, hammered their salary cap and depleted their draft stock all in one offseason. All to obtain at best a passable version of a defense.

Is heavy blitzing on defense something that Pete Carroll and Ken Norton Jr intend to run? Because it bears little resemblance to the blueprint Pete originally rolled out when he came to Seattle.

The linebackers are being tasked with all their regular duties plus rushing the passer and covering for the blitzing strong safety. Not only is it unfamiliar territory but it is also not a wise use of your assets. The results in 2020 bear that out.

It should be noted that when the Seahawks acquired Carlos Dunlap, Wagner’s blitzes dropped dramatically. There is a correlation there.

Now Dunlap is gone and the Seahawks are again looking for answers on the defensive line.

So, what will this offseason bring? Just throw more resources at the defense and see what they have? Blitz Wagner 150 times?

Their super bowl winning defense was predicated on keeping the ball in front of you, minimizing big plays and getting off the field on third down. Linebackers were free to scream to the ball carrier and punish him. They rarely blitzed. It is a far cry from what that defense is now.

Now, zones of the field are abandoned, gaps behind the line of scrimmage are bigger and players in the backfield are left as the last line of defense far too frequently. Clever offensive coordinators seriously exploited this defense and there is no indication that trend will stop in 2021.

They need to decide what they want the linebackers to do and account for it on the defense. Blitzing two players frequently is riskier than day old sushi.

2. Do they move on from Bobby Wagner?

Wagner has combined with Russell Wilson to make 2012 one of the all-time great drafts. He has been everything the Seahawks could have possibly hoped for and more.

But with the time has come to have the uncomfortable conversation. His salary and age make it necessary to scrutinize whether they need to swallow hard and move on.

Arguments for trading him

– $17m per season his simply too much money for any MLB regardless of age. Wagner is making slightly more on his contract than CJ Mosely on his market-bender of a contract but 20% more than the next highest-paid player at the position. That is not in any way ideal.

– The Seahawks just spent a first-round pick on a LB. They likely felt justified spending such a high pick on a LB knowing the day a decision on Wagner would come.

– ‘Better a year too early than a year too late’ is rapidly becoming part of the conversation.

– They badly need an infusion of cheap talent and they are very limited in draft stock this year.

– He has trade value. It might not be in the first or early second round range. Yet there is no doubt several teams will be thrilled to add Wagner to their roster. It would give them defensive legitimacy and instantly add smarts and leadership to their entire team.

Arguments against trading him

– The Seahawks have dug themselves a hole. Wagner is their best player on defense and they do not have many others that are even close. 2020 might not have been his best season but make no mistake; he earned his entire salary captaining this mess of a defense. So far, 2021 is not tracking much differently. So they may have to pay the piper by once again having a huge number on the cap at the MIKE spot.

– If the Seahawks do trade Russell Wilson, they will have a serious void of star power and leadership in the locker room. There would be a bit of a ‘will the last guy out of the Seahawks locker room please turn out the lights’ fatalism going on among fans and it would be justified. Keeping him and putting him front and center as part of the ‘next phase’ effort would go a long way towards maintaining some legitimacy.

– Bobby Wagner is a known quantity. The $9m of cap relief trading him would bring is not. There is an underlying mistrust of the front office among fans. It is not hard to imagine the Seahawks taking that $9m and buying three low-impact players at $3m each and calling it good. And now they are fielding Cody Barton and Jordyn Brooks as their starting linebackers. Therefore, not only would the team have not solved their issues on the defensive line but they have also now significantly weakened the strongest part of the roster on defense. That just cannot happen.

– He only has a $3.75m dead cap hit in 2022 when the Seahawks have an enormous amount of cap room. There is a strong argument for converting some 2021 salary to a bonus, kicking another $3.75m or so onto that 2022 number for around a $7.5m dead cap hit and trading or cutting him in 2022. That would accomplish 3 things: You make some 2021 cap room, keep Wagner on your roster and a $7.5m dead cap hit in a year of massive room is not a bad bargain. You also gain a whopping $16m of cap room in 2022 when the Seahawks move on from him.

3. Do they bring K.J. Wright back?

Ask any fan that question going into the 2020 season and you would get a resounding ‘no’ to bringing Wright back. A big cap hit and Jordyn Brooks along with Wright’s age and likely salary demands made that call easy.

Well, K.J. had other plans. A fantastic season has forced his name back into the conversation.

It still might be too much of a reach to bring him back. They have a decision to make on Bobby Wagner and Jordyn Brooks looks ready to take the SAM/WILL spot Wright occupied in 2020, if not the MIKE spot in 2021.

More than once K.J. has gone on record as saying he is not giving the Seahawks a discount to play for them going forward. He has every right to that stance after having a fantastic and frankly underrated career in Seattle.

However, the market reality is going to hit several players this offseason and Wright might be among them.

This could be a player the Seahawks play the long game with. If he gets a nice contract for another team, we can all salute him as one of the all-time great Seahawks and wish him well on his new team.

However, there is a scenario that is easy to envision where Wright is not signed through the first wave and the draft and come summertime still has not found a team. The Seahawks could be in a position to offer him a mutually beneficial one-year deal that keeps him in the fold and lets him test the market again in 2022.
Of course, that would have to be after the Seahawks have settled their other top priorities like the lines on both sides and have added a cornerback or two to the roster.

4. Is 2021 Cody Barton’s last chance to make his mark at linebacker in Seattle?

This will be his third season after a very checkered two seasons at linebacker. The Seahawks drafting a linebacker in the first round last year was a damning statement about how they view him. Further strengthening that statement was his play in 2020 and the fact that the Seahawks benched him the minute Jordyn Brooks was healthy.

Pete Carroll attempted to prop him up a couple of times in the press. Once acknowledging that Barton made mistakes the prior week but saying he knows what he did and would not make them again. The following week he got trucked by the Vikings and was not seen again on the defense until two months later when he came in on mop-up duty in the Jets blowout.

Fan confidence is low. Coaches’ confidence is low. Can he take some of the mojo he gained by being a Special Teams demon and force his way into the conversation for regular playing time at linebacker in 2021?

It is unfortunate that this is where Seattle is with Barton. If he were playing at ‘adequate-starter’ level, the Seahawks could easily clear Wagner and Wright’s salaries off the books and strengthen other areas of the team.

Ken Norton Jr is a linebacker and a linebacker coach at heart. If he can get Barton turned into a useful piece of the defense in 2021, it will have been a fantastic piece of coaching but nobody should bet the house on it.

Rob’s Thoughts on the Draft Class and Potential Targets

We’ve often talked about the importance of elite agility and overall athleticism when it comes to Seattle’s preferences at the position. With no combine this year, it’s very difficult to pinpoint who might be on their radar.

Baron Browning is an outstanding athlete with great length, speed and explosive traits. Cam McGrone is one of the more underrated players in this class — he’s incredibly quick to work through traffic and just fly’s to the ball.

Justin Hilliard had a terrific end to the 2020 season (especially against Northwestern). He’s undersized but really quick and he packs a punch for his frame. Dylan Moses was once considered a top-end prospect but his star faded after suffering an ACL injury.

Monty Rice is solid if unspectacular and former quarterback Chaz Surratt has a decent level of physical upside but is still really learning the position. Auburn’s KJ Britt had a great Senior Bowl game and plays with anger and intensity. He’s been praised for his work ethic and attitude.

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231 Comments

  1. Rob Staton

    Clemson’s Jackson Carman — short arms

    HT: 6047
    WT: 317
    Hand: 9 5/8
    Arm: 32 4/8
    Wing: 87

    • Rob4q

      Yeah, I remember you mentioning he would be better suited inside at guard. I think you even listed him as such on your board…

    • Jordan

      That wing to arm length ratio is incredibly odd.

  2. Trevor

    Great job on these positional breakdowns Curtis it is greatly appreciated.

    • Bigsteviej

      Agree strongly. The quality of the content here is remarkable.

      • RugbyLock

        Best Seahawks fan site out there IMO and the ONLY site with comments that are worth reading and highly informative but also virtually toxin-free!

        • Rob Staton

          👏🏻👏🏻👏🏻

        • dcd2

          Hear, hear!

    • cha

      You’re welcome Trevor. Thanks for reading.

  3. Mick

    Once again a position where we have problems. We can’t enter the season with just Wagner and Brooks. I would only trade Wagner if we get a starting LB as part of a RW deal. Definitely not sign Irvin, and only sign Wright later in FA, at low cost. Barton doesn’t seem to be more than a special teams player. My nostalgic self wonders how Malcolm Smith would look back in the team, on a vet minimum.

    Rob I also had time to watch your discussion with Cigar Jacson today, really interesting. I don’t share his opinion that we can keep RW for a year, it’s gonna be only long-term peace or leave now, and I hope now means soon enough to plan next year.

    • Simo

      I think they can, and very well may, enter the season with just Wagner and Brooks. KJ isn’t likely to be resigned, at least not right away. If his market is cool, he may be able to return on a one year deal later on. I also think they could bring back Bruce on a vet minimum deal, or close to it. He provides some insurance as a SAM and pass rusher at least.

      I’m really on the fence about trading Bobby, as it would likely have a very negative effect on the defense. He’s the man who calls the plays and gets everyone lined up. And he never comes off the field. I do like Cha’s idea of lowering his 2021 cap hit by a few million and pushing this decision off until 2022. Now, if they were to get a good veteran LB back in trade that could eliminate the need to keep Bobby around.

      I also agree that they shouldn’t keep RW around unless both sides can get completely on the same page. If there’s any hard feelings or animosity, it just won’t work.

  4. Big Mike

    Good stuff cha. Many thanks for your efforts and Rob’s too. Keeps me entertained and “in the loop” as it concerns my beloved Seahawks.

  5. Gohawks5151

    Eric Fisher cut. Another OL on the market.

    • Robert

      and mitchell schwartz

    • Mick

      Looks like they also noticed the depth at position in this year’s draft.

      • Michael Hasslinger

        Fisher will not play in 2021

        • Brik

          From what I’m seeing a torn ACL can take 6-9 months to heal. He might not be back in the beginning, but he should be back.

  6. STTBM

    On Wagner: it’s pretty clear he’s lost a step. He’s unable to fly to the edge as fast as he once did. He’s a great leader, and a very good athlete still, but he’s getting 1/3 of his salary for leadership and being one of Carrols Guys. I’m on the fence about keeping him vs trading him.

    I have a totally different take on the play vs the Vikings on the goal line with Barton: he stopped his blocker cold; did exactly what he was supposed to do, allowing the guy next to him to tackle the ball carrier. He was not walked/driven five yards backwards, that’s utterly false.

    While I dont see him being a good starting option, he gets too much flak. He’s outplayed Collier, yet gets more garbage. He’s a ST stud, and an emergency backup, no more, no less. Collier thus far has been a total Bust. Well, minus two plays…I have hope he’ll grow into a decent player, but I’ve seen nothing to show he wasn’t a total waste of a first round pick: a limited athlete who will likely never dominate.

    • cha

      It may be that Wagner has lost a step. But he’s not that far removed from the ‘unicorn’ season he had in 2018 when he PFF graded something like 80 or higher for every game and didn’t have a missed tackle until November. Not coincidentally that’s the last time he had a decent DL.

      On Barton I wasn’t referencing the play you mention. It was a play where the Seahawks had the Vikings backed up in their own zone, and Barton had Dalvin Cook stone met in the gap and Cook took him for 5 more yards. I chose that as symbolic of his play because he’d been manhandled in that game quite a bit. He was completely blocked out of the play on Cook’s first touchdown as well.

      Like I mentioned in the post, he didn’t get a single snap on defense after that performance, so I would say PC and KNJ don’t agree that he gets too much flak.

      To your message below, I have no problem with disagreement. Discussion and debate that is respectful is what we’re here for. That’d be boring if everyone agreed with everything I said all the time.

      • Big Mike

        Barton got trucked by a stiff arm from that physical freak Aaron Rodgers. Weak af. Also, they traded up in the round to draft him iirc. In my eyes he’s a bust as is Collier. Collier more so though because he was a 1st rounder.

      • STTBM

        Ok, cool. I do remember him getting trucked, and that play vs Rogers…

        I agree, Seattle needs to fix their Dline, bad. To say nothing of the Oline…

  7. Rob4q

    Great stuff Cha, I really enjoy reading these positional breakdowns!

    I really like the idea you propose with Wagner and it just makes too much sense – keep your best defensive player, get a little cap relief and push the decision to 2022 when there is more money available.

    I do think the path forward with KJ is exactly as described as well. He hast to see what his market is and then the Seahawks can decide if it’s too much or not. If he leaves, we wish him well and thank him for a great Seahawks career – he definitely should be in the Ring of Honor one day!

    Barton, BBK, & Griffen seem to be just ST or role players and if pressed into starting on defense would be a liability.

    I think there will be some low cost vets available that could help as well as possibly bringing Irvin back at a smaller number. And I just don’t see them drafting a LB in the early part of the draft again. So I keep coming back to a prospect who will be available in the mid to late rounds and could be a really good player. Played in the SEC, had a good college career and made plays all over the field. Looks like a decent athlete with good size and speed. But the one thing that jumps out in the highlights is his processing of what the offense is trying to do. Understanding where to drop into coverage, when to knock the snot out of the lineman in front of you so a teammate can get to the ball carrier etc. Check him out:

    Erroll Thompson, LB Mississippi State
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KFhuK8fiCnE

  8. STTBM

    There is so much uncertainty in FA this year: teams are being careful, waiting for the most part to see what the market will be. Seattle still holding their cards close to their best, still dickering with Chicago I guess, unwilling to tip their hand or undermine their position by signing anyone to real money.

    Seattle needs to get Dunap on board, and add another pass rusher opposite him, as well as find a DT and a starting C who can hold his own vs Donald. I think they need to draft their starting LG with their first pick, sign Linsley, and draft a C in the first four rounds as well.

    The question is, how to afford all that? Wagner, Wright, Hollister, cap shenanigans, whatever it takes…

    • BruceN

      “Seattle needs to get Dunlap on board, and add another pass rusher opposite him”

      I initially thought they would cut Dunlap because of his $14M cap number and the possibility we may get Khalil Mack from the Bears. The more I think about having both the more excited I get.

  9. STTBM

    Cha, please dont take my words as a negative: enjoyed your take, appreciate your time and effort. Reasonable minds can disagree…

  10. Hawk Mock

    Regarding a Wilson trade, what is the optimal deadline to get a deal done? I feel like today or tomorrow so they have enough time to get a game plan for the tampering period that starts on the 15th.

    Also, with everyone else restructuring contracts around the league to manipulate the cap, why do you suppose the Hawks let Dunlap go(was it really another gentleman’s handshake agreement?) and why haven’t they restructured Bobby(is he just not going to be for that at all) to gain a little advantage for FA?

  11. SonGoku

    Who would you rather have as QB? Kellen Mond, Jordan Love or Sam Darnold?

    • AlaskaHawk

      I want Kellen Mond in the second round. Did you know he had a 19 touchdown to 3 Interception ratio last year? That’s crazy good, and just the sort of quarterback that Pete “take care of the ball” Carroll likes.

    • Gohawks5151

      Probably Mond, but part of me always thinks there is something there with Darnold. His best trait was throwing on the move and if Waldron does a lot of PA or rollout stuff he could do well.

      • Rohan Raman

        The problem with Darnold is purely how much you have to clean up.

    • Happy Hawk

      Russell Wilson

      • STTBM

        +1

  12. Mike

    Excellent job Cha!

    Looks like KC has dropped both their starting OTs. Seems like there’s gonna be plenty of linemen on the market this offseason.

    • AlaskaHawk

      With the cap being what it is, and quarterbacks sucking up more money, I predict a lot of free agents are going to find a soft market for their services. As much as I liked Frank Clark, who wants to pay his 25.8 million dollar cap hit this year? Here we are debating Bobby Wagner’s salary – and have released Dunlap (please resign him!!!), Things could be worse.

      Anyway – I think there will be a lot of veterans who will be cheaper to sign relative to last year. As always, the first few elite players at each position will get a great offer, the rest will be sucking on lemons. Fortunately the Seahawks are excellent at making lemonade.

      • Gohawks5151

        Seattle has been without a plan seemingly for the past 3(?) years, but I do think they were betting hard on getting some deals in FA this year with the low cap. Trying to find another Avril and Bennett.

        • dcd2

          If they were planning for this, they shouldn’t have spent every last dime of $50M last year in FA. We have the lowest carry-forward of any team in the NFL except the Bears.

          There will be some deals, but we aren’t (currently) in a great position to take advantage.

          Hopefully the RW situation sorts itself out soon, so they can start to plan a direction and make cap moves accordingly.

    • STTBM

      Fisher may not play at all in 2021. He tore his achilles in the Title game. That makes it unlikely he makes it back, certainly at full strength. And back injuries are scary, especially for Big Guys. Not sure these moves help anyone but KC.

      • Mike

        Oh for sure. These guys are not guys id count on playing with their injuries. But still, that may drive a bargain where you expect them to start the second half of the year but sign them at a discount.

        Even ignoring them though, this offseason we probably need to sign at least 2 year deals for guys and backload the contracts to decrease this year’s cap hit.

  13. Landon

    On PFN’s podcast Breaking Down the Board, they talked about Landon Dickerson as a day 3/FA pick because of all of his injuries that he has had. The scout said that he is the type of person that “you better get your chinstrap buckled because he’ll knock it off ya”. Since he was playing at Bama, teams are more likely to have medical information on him than anyone, but I thought that comment was interesting. Any thoughts Rob?

    • Rob Staton

      He won’t go undrafted.

      He might last a bit due to the injuries though

  14. CL

    So what do you think about Russell’s tweet?

    Could be nothing, but who knows.

    Russell Wilson
    @DangeRussWilson
    ·
    1 Std.
    “Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, the new creation has come: The old has gone, the new is here!”
    2 Corinthians 5:17 NIV
    #BVD

    • STTBM

      Yep, sounds like he’s gone to me. Poop!

    • Mick

      Just how I’d expect him to announce his trade.

    • Robert

      With that tweet and his betting futures getting taken down it surer seems like he is gone.

      • Ben S

        I saw this morning that one book had the betting odds back up with the Jets favoured almost even with the Bears. Might be reading into the betting odds too much but we will see!

    • Trevor

      Typical attention grabbing Twitter crap. I am so ready for them to trade him.

      • Hawk Mock

        Probably nothing – just found his Cliffsnotes Bible version in an old bin and was dusting it off

        • STTBM

          You don’t think Russ has the entire bible memorized!? Gasp!

          • BobbyK

            Russ would be one to want you to think he has it memorized.

            • STTBM

              Lol Bobbyk! Yeah, definitely some annoying stuff about Russ. He’s still a better person, and more valuable to the team than Carrol. But know-nothibg, Do-nothing sad sack Ms. Allen will choose the Old White Guy…

  15. James Kupihea

    So umm…what’s this mean? lololol

    Russell Wilson
    @DangeRussWilson
    ·1h

    “Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, the new creation has come: The old has gone, the new is here!”
    2 Corinthians 5:17 NIV
    #BVD

    • James Kupihea

      Oh dang, I didn’t mean to post this directly below the other. I thought I erased it, and was replying to the comments above. Sorry all!

  16. Group Captain Mandrake

    I think this line sums up the depth quite nicely: “Cody Barton, Shaquem Griffin and Ben Burr-Kirven were also there.”

    Even if KJ stays, if a starter goes down, there’s nothing worth mentioning as backup.

  17. Leonardo

    Great stuff Cha/Rob! Have either of you guys had a chance to look at Jamin Davis out of Kentucky? Have seen him listed on some sites as a day 2-caliber prospect, but haven’t heard much about him.

    • Rob Staton

      I watched him. Can’t say I see what all the fuss is about

  18. BobbyK

    It’s funny how KJ was drafted the year before Bruce Irvin was drafted, yet KJ seems to have some gas left in his tank, while Irvin is a washed up has been.

    • Gohawks5151

      Yeah it is. But Bruce was old for a draft pick I think. And he only has one skill, speed. That seems to go quickly.

    • Rob4q

      Irvin is a washed up has been??? He tore his ACL last year, so that sucks for sure, but I believe it was his first major injury of his career. Maybe go back and watch the Atlanta game in week 1 last year and see how washed up he looked. Even just looking at his small sample size of stats for 2020, which was a little over 1 game:

      5 tackles, 4 solo, 1 tackle for loss, 3 QB hits

      Not all pro stats, but certainly not a washed up has been…I’m hoping they bring him back on a short, incentive based deal because one thing is for sure, Bruce brings it every day and would be a great influence for the young guys!

      • BobbyK

        KJ played out the final year of his well paid deal. Not a washed up has been.

        Irvin has bounced around these past years and made much less than KJ last year even prior to his injury. He’s not good and now he’s washed up (with or without the ACL tear). No normal team with intelligence would have paid Irvin what he got last year.

      • Gary

        Irvin was overrated in his prime, and he is waaaaay past his prime. The contract the Hawks gave him for last season was a criminal overpay and they need to let him walk and replace him with a hungry rookie on a value deal.

    • Group Captain Mandrake

      How can you call a guy a has-been when he missed the most of the season with an injury? He’s been pretty healthy his whole career, and ACLs can go at any age. Plus, his stats were not terrible in the small sample size we have from last year. Should he be depended on as a top tier starter? No, of course not, but he shouldn’t have been placed in that position in the first place.

      As far as KJ lasting longer, I haven’t looked at any data, but I would suspect that a LB who plays in space will have a longer career than a guy who spends a lot of time running directly into 300+ lb. men for the majority of his career.

      • STTBM

        Because he looked a step slow. He’s several years older than his draft classmates, and he certainly hasn’t got the speed he once had. That was apparent in his last couple seasons before he resigned here. It’s not a new thing.

        3 pressures, zero sacks. Against a bad team.

    • Denver Hawker

      Age plays a factor which aren’t always the same in a draft. But perhaps more importantly is position. Irvin plays a position that requires more explosiveness so his ‘relative’ decline will be more acute.

  19. dcd2

    Really great work Cha. Not just this one, but all of the position groups. They have been very helpful and a nice way to work through the roster this off-season.

    Perhaps insanely, I keep thinking that Baron Browning is a real option as one of our first picks (assuming a RW) trade and some board maneuvering. I just love the idea of Browning (WILL) and Brooks (MIKE) for the young center of the D. Throw in Chris Rumph as a SAM/LEO and the speed and athleticism would be back at the 2nd level immediately. This of course goes counter to the general consensus to steer assets away from LB and toward the DL. After this year (assuming Bobby kept), we would have one of the cheapest, youngest and most athletic LB corps in the NFL.

    Did you have any thoughts on Zaven Collins? He’s got a bit of KJ to his game to my eye, but am interested in other’s opinions.

  20. Rob4q

    A few other late round guys to keep an eye on –

    Nick Eubanks, TE Michigan
    6’5″, 256 lbs, was highly rated after an excellent 2019, but fell off in 2020. Looks like a complete TE prospect with high upside. Here is what PFN says “Eubanks looked like he was developing into a top-100 pick off the 2019 film, but he struggled last season along with the entire Michigan offense. He possesses the size, blocking ability, and pass-catching skill, to play at the next level. He’ll be a steal in the later rounds.”

    Javon McKinley, WR Norte Dame
    6’2″, 220 lbs and had a good season in 2020. Might not have the top end speed the Seahawks like, but PFN said this about him “If McKinley continues to progress on the field, he has the underlying ability to develop into a No. 1 wideout at the next level.”

    Ta’Quon Graham, DT Texas
    6’3″, 290 pounds, Wingspan: 85 1/8″, Arm: 34 7/8″, Hand: 10 5/8″
    A little light but frame might have some room to grow, previously played DE and would love to see some testing numbers for him! PFN says “Athletic interior defensive tackle with next-level physical skills. Fires off the snap with an explosive first step, plays with proper lean, and effectively uses his hands. Strong, gets leverage on opponents, and makes plays up the field or down the line of scrimmage. Forceful, flies around the action and gives effort.” Could be a Michael Bennett type for the Seahawks…

    • Sea Mode

      That’s really nice length on that last one.

  21. Swisshawk

    My plan for the offseason would be:

    Tades:
    – Wilson for 3 first, 3 second, DE Mack, LB Smith
    – Adams for a 1
    – Wagner for a 2

    Draft:
    1 QB
    1 HB
    2 LG
    2 CB
    2 OT/LB/TE
    3 LB

    FA:
    – DE (Dunlap?)
    – DE (Clowney?)
    – C

    Extensions: Brown, Lockett, Reed, Diggs

    What do you guys think?

    • Simo

      Not to bad! Sure fills a lot of holes, provided they can make good choices!

    • Silly Billy

      There’s no need to trade Bobby and Adams if Russ is gone.
      You’d now have the cap space to pay both, and it’d be silly to trade away all 3 blue chip players on your team.

      I know this blog feels differently, but I think trading Adams is a bad idea. The “bad scheme fit” argument is can be overblown with a whole offseason to gameplan with. He’s still a young “BAMF” that PC needs on his team.

      Also, doubt you get a 2 for Wagner, not with his contract.

      • Scot04

        I still trade Adams and Wagner. Not tanking if you spend the money on trenches and use draft capital correctly

        • Silly Billy

          Why?

          Too much of a sunk cost to trade trade away an all-pro safety at a discount. Wagner won’t get much in a trade thanks to his contract. They clearly make our defense better. The issue of $$ would be solved if Russ is traded

    • Happy Hawk

      That’s called tanking

  22. Seattle_Fan

    I think a trade is evitable at this point. I’m still surprised how dismissive people here locally are about a possible trade. Are they in denial or scared to admit something that is so obvious? I see parallels to another Seattle superstar in the past that no one is really mentioning. It is not the exact same situation but there are definitely some stark similarities. That player is ARod. A player that so much wants approval from fans. A player that so much wants to be liked and be perfect. It is very confusing when you have so many former teammates not have the best to say about Russ or the true respect they have for him. I think it comes down to how relatable he was or wasn’t to so many of them. I think ARod had that same problem. People just don’t know what’s fake or real… Russ is by far a much better person overall so like I said, the situation is not the same. The grass is not always greener on the other side.

    It will be interesting if a trade does go down. How will Russell’s legacy turn out to be? He could very well go to a team and win multiple chips. Or he could very well be a HOF player but not truly beloved by players and fans like ARod.

    • Rob Staton

      I’ve always thought he’s a bit of an A-Rod type

      • Trevor

        Nailed it A-Rod is the perfect comp. incredible talent but insecure and that leads to this almost compulsion to be popular and liked. All which makes them seem fake to team mates.

        A new QB like Minshew would be a breath of fresh air IMO till they find a long term option. Who knows a guy like him or Darnold might thrive in the new OCs scheme with weapons like DK and Locket.

        • Hawkdawg

          Don’t think Russ would juice, though. That’s a difference…

    • Jordan

      Russ could be a very tough teammate to like. Easy to respect given his work ethic and community work; but tough to like given his polish, corniness, cringe, and lack of self-awareness.

      I think to a lot of guys (Doug, Sherm, Lynch, Bennett) Russ represents a transition from everyone fighting for their job in a cut throat atmosphere to one guy being treated differently and gentler than everyone else. That ultimately led to the teams’ identity going from a badass group of outlaws that was hated league wide to the identity being the QB.

      If Russ leaves, I will be completely neutral on him. No rooting for or against, as his personality just doesn’t drum up those sort of emotions. Whereas I found myself actively cheering for the success of authentic guys like Marshawn and Bruce.

  23. Trevor

    Interesting Mahomes signs his mega deal and now the Chiefs have to start cutting salary. Both OTs cut today. Then Russ wants to know why the Hawks did not do more. Funny how Brady always seems to work with the front office to create cap space and is secure enough not to need to claim he is the highest paid, no wonder he keeps winning while the rest of the elite QBs continue to get paid.

    • Group Captain Mandrake

      I assume injuries had something to do with it. Eric Fisher tore his Achilles (I think) late in the season so there’s almost 0% chance he would play this year. They don’t want to pay that much to a guy who can’t play for a year. If he didn’t get injured, I would assume they would have kept him. The super bowl showed how important good line play is.

    • dcd2

      The Chief’s OL, or lack of probably cost them the SB too.

      I remember right after the game, so many KC fans were saying that the OL needs to be a priority this off-season.

    • TJ

      That was my first thought too. It will be interesting to see how many championships Mahomes will be able to play for while earning his mega-salary. With so many of these super-elite QBs, once they get paid, their teams don’t have the cap room to build complete, quality rosters around them.

    • DC

      Brady is 6 rings past his nearest, active competitors. Impressive to say the least. Brees & Rodgers aren’t gonna catch him. Russ had his chance to make it 3-2 & would need one hell of a run to gain any ground. Mahomes is young enough to have a shot if the stars align & stay aligned. At the current inflation rate for QB salaries his contract could seem like a bargain in 3-4 years.

      Kind of nice that the bulk of the top incoming QB talent is going to the AFC. If we manage to keep Russ he will have the NFC all to himself in a couple of years.

  24. Nick

    The Jets make a lot of sense. If he could resurrect that franchise, he would become a legend in NYC. And Robert Saleh knows from first-hand experience just how incredible of a QB Russ is.

    • Rob Staton

      The word on the street is the Shanahan lot don’t like Russ for their scheme at all

      • Tomas

        Well, thank God for that, at least!

        • Tomas

          Understand your remark belatedly, Rob … I was flashing on the nightmarish vision of Russ in a 49’ers uniform, but f course you were referring to the Jets. My nerves are on edge, I guess.

  25. Sea Mode

    Etienne is fast and explosive and close to Seattle’s size.

    I’m a little disappointed in Rodgers’ jumps. Expected more explosive even at his size.

    Jim Nagy
    @JimNagy_SB
    ·2h

    Official jump results from @ClemsonFB pro-day:

    RB Travis Etienne
    HT: 5101
    WT: 215
    VJ: 33.5
    BJ: 10-8

    On-field 40 times on @ClemsonFB Travis Etienne from two different scouts. Impressive times for RB.

    1st attempt: 4.45/4.44
    2nd attempt: 4.45/4.44

    WR Amari Rodgers
    VJ: 33.0
    BJ: 10-1

    WR Cornell Powell
    VJ: 36.5 Eyes
    BJ: 10-8

    Daniel Jeremiah
    @MoveTheSticks
    ·3h

    From scout’s watch at Clemson:
    Travis Etienne- 4.41/4.43
    Amari Rodgers- 4.54/4.50
    Cornell Powell- 4.54/4.53

    Meanwhile, Powell looking swole: https://twitter.com/JimNagy_SB/status/1370056733805178886

    • Volume12

      You see the big boy from Arkansas’ #’s? 👀

      • Sea Mode

        Nope.

    • dcd2

      Did Rodgers not run?

      • Sea Mode

        Yes, it’s right there at the end of my post. I just wanted to separate the info from Nagy from that of Jeremiah.

        DJ posted 4.54/4.50, but he originally wrote 4.454 as a typo and so everyone on Twitter started re-tweeting 4.45 for Rodgers.

        • dcd2

          Got it. Thanks.

          Bummer. I know we both liked him, but that pretty much eliminates him from Seattle’s board, don’t you think?

          • Sea Mode

            I guess it depends on the time that Seattle’s scout got. I wouldn’t cross him off just yet. He had a great Sr. Bowl, fits exactly what we need in a WR3, and has a lot going for him:

            TURRON DAVENPORT
            @TDavenport_NFL
            ·4h

            Dabo Sweeney on Amari Rodgers: He plays w/the length of a 6-2, 6-3 guy but what you Iove about him is his YAC. He’ll be ready to play the day he gets there. He has elite fundamentals & techniques. His dad is now a WR coach in the pros. He’s technically advanced.

            Hogg
            @HoggNFL
            ·Mar 8

            Most 15+ yard receptions from the slot in 2020, per PFF:

            1️⃣ Amari Rodgers: 25
            2️⃣ Kadarius Toney: 23
            3️⃣ Marlon Williams: 22
            4️⃣ Elijah Moore: 20

            • dcd2

              True, Ursua ran about the same.

              • Volume12

                He plays faster on tape/in pads.

                Love Greg Newsome, N’Wstrn corner, but he dont play at a 4.3 speed. At least that I saw anyways.

                • dcd2

                  He was taking reps at RB during the pro day too (Rodgers). Maybe Waldron will like him for the offense.

                  Newsome can’t be that fast. That’s almost Deion fast. He looks like a great CB though. Would have been better for us if he’d clocked at 4.56 or something. Still, I don’t think we look at a CB early. Never really have.

                  • Volume12

                    Oh I think Seattle is taking a corner this year. Just a matter of when.

                    That kid from Stanford, Wedington (sp?) is interesting too. More of a gadget guy and a pretty elite returner too. I do like Rodgers though.

    • Volume12

      WTF?! Etienne w/o pads has a weird shaped body. That’s too much weight for him imo.

      • Sea Mode

        Yeah, he clearly put on weight for the pro day.

  26. Sea Mode

    There you go, Rob:

    Jim Nagy liked
    Bruce Feldman
    @BruceFeldmanCFB
    ·19h

    QB not getting enough talk, per one college coach: Stanford’s Davis Mills: “Some of the throws he made—holy shit. He’s big and thick, accurate. Moves well in the pocket. There would be more people raving about him if there was a combine this year.”

    • BruceN

      Being in NorCal I watched some of his games. I think he’s pretty good and if RW is traded we should consider him.

    • Rob Staton

      Mond and Davis the two guys we were talking about weeks and weeks ago… now the national media are on board

      • ScandicHawk

        Can’t help keep pounding the table (and hoping) for Davis, he’s a top-5 pick in my view if he’d stayed another year in college. Possibly even a number 1 pick given the lousy (so far) qb class coming out next year. Would love to trade Russ and be low enough to get him in the first round. Reminds me of Aikman and Luck, two guys in the Pac that shredded my Dawgs, and pretty much everybody else. Sneaky slippery in the pocket, fantastic at reading a defense, keeps his eyes down field, calm under pressure while throwing dimes into windows that suck the life out of a defense. And he’s so darn accurate. Still shaking my head at some his throws this year against the UW. Check out his game highlights here, especially his 3rd down throws, he throws a gorgeous ball…. at about 10:50 in he makes a throw where you just kind of throw in the towel and say okay we’re not gonna beat these guys. (Keith Taylor’s the corner there, perfect coverage… he’s a seriously long, fluid db, by the way, underrated and right up the alley of the Seahawks corner profile.)

        https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xCR5OlibFEc

        David Shaw loves Davis, and he’s a straight shooter, no BS coach on Stanford NFL talent. Somebody’s gonna be very happy with this guy, hope the Seahawks deal Unhappy Little Man and he’s our first pick.

  27. Trevor

    If the Jags offered the #1 pick for Russ and he would sign off would you make that trade. Nothing else included. I know not going to happen but just curious what people think.

    I would make that trade in a minute then trade Adam’s and Wagner to get draft capital.

    • BobbyK

      I would trade Russ for the #1 overall pick in a heartbeat. I would even include additional assets if needed.

      • TomLPDX

        No thanks.

    • Mick

      Basically Lawrence for Russ. Not enough for me.

    • icb12

      No I wouldn’t do that.

      I would however agree to let the jags draft Trevor, and then post June 1, trade Russ for Trevor Straight up.
      Same result. Save 26 million.

    • Ryan

      I would absolutely make that trade. I’d try and get the paperwork turned in before they changed their mind.

  28. Sea Mode

    Rapoport on with Eisen just now:

    “Russell Wilson: I know there’s teams interested. The Bears have been mentioned, they are definitely interested. I haven’t gotten the sense on any momentum toward a trade. And the biggest question for Seattle would be: if you’re going to trade Russell Wilson, ok, fine, you’re going to get a lot for him. Who’s your quarterback? And I don’t have an answer to that question, which is obviously a significant problem.

    https://twitter.com/RichEisenShow/status/1370090739946819587

    • Rob Staton

      Guess that’s that then.

      Great work Ian

      Top reporting

  29. Volume12

    I posted DJ’s conference call the other day. Couple of my own thoughts.

    – Not as down on this DT class as he is. Theres not much at the top, sure, but plenty of good, serviceable guys on day 2 & day 3. Having said that, I could be wrong, but 4th & 5th rounds seem like the sweet spot there this year.

    – I dont see Nick Chubb in Javonte Williams at all. And I feel bad for buddy if that’s what he’s being told. Is DJ smoking battery acid? Chris Carson 2.0? 💯. Just dont see the elite vision in him that Chubb possesses.

    • DC

      I’m still pulling for Kylin Hill to the Hawks. Maybe he slips to our 4th rd pick?

      Would love me some Najee Harris but I’ll take my next favorite.

      • Volume12

        Najee, Darrisaw, and Pitts are my top 3 favorites in this class, but none of them are happening for Seattle.

        Man. TBH, I kinda forgot about Kylin Hill and not sure how. That would be a great fit. I think your right. Seems to be his range. Him, Javonte, Sermon, or Stevenson would all work for me. Rountree as well.

        • Trevor

          Love those 3 guys too Vol. if the Hawks got #20 from the Bears I would be tempted to use it on Najee or Darrisahw.

          I also really like Rondel Moore or Zaven Collins in Rd #2

          • Volume12

            Same man.

            Me too. Heard somewhere, wish I could remember who, that Collins was running in the 4.6’s. Makes me think that Seattle sees him as a pass rusher. LEO or 2 pt stance. He’s another guy, like Prez, who is somewhat positionless. Just the way the game is trending.

          • Volume12

            Not sure if he’s even Seattles jam or if Chicago would offer him, but say RW ends up going there. How would u feel about David Montgomery at RB?

  30. Michael McKevitt

    I approve of a Davis Mills succession plan. Maybe they should draw Andrew Luck out of retirement for Mills’ rookie year, give him some NFL 101. 😉

  31. Volume12

    Not too much football talk yet, but if anyone wants, give ur boy a follow, and I’ll follow back. Would be nice to talk to ya’ll on the bird app as well.

    Dirt McGirt
    @CannonxWabash

  32. cha

    Tom Pelissero
    @TomPelissero
    The #Lions plan to release CB Justin Coleman in the coming days, source said. One of the NFL’s highest-paid slot corners heads back to the market.
    11:32 AM · Mar 11, 2021

    • RugbyLock

      Would love to get him back…

  33. cha

    Michael Silver
    @MikeSilver
    If you are the Seahawks, and one of the four teams not on Russell Wilson’s agent’s list of desired destinations calls… you obviously listen. You could always take a potential trade to Wilson and see if he’d waive the no-trade clause. Would he play for Panthers? Broncos? Etc…
    11:50 AM · Mar 11, 2021

    • Rob Staton

      Tea leaves…

      This is the Seahawks still trying to work a top-10 team into the equation because they know what else is out there

      A last punt

      • Sea Mode

        Yup

      • Gohawks5151

        Chicago deal must not be that good?

        • Rob Staton

          They are desperate. It will be very good

          Nothing wrong with turning over every stone

          • Pran

            If the deal is bad, then we could as well throw JS and Pete be part of the package as Bears may soon be needing new coach and GM

            • Gohawks5151

              Imagine the look on Russ’ face seeing Pete again.

  34. Volume12

    I kinda think FAs are gonna take way more 1 year deals this year. That should actually help Seattle, but we’ll see. And having the 13th highest cap space was waaaaay higher than I thought they’d be.

    • Rob Staton

      13th highest but still nob all really

      With holes all over the roster and no depth

      • cha

        No idea what you’re talking about Rob.

        Gregg Bell’s lead a couple days ago was “Seahawks just increased their cap space by 400%”

        I’m not kidding.

        I’m not kidding.

        • Rob Staton

          Three cheers for the Seahawks

          Hip hip…

        • Big Mike

          Yep he was basically touting the release of Dunlap in terms of cap space.
          Douche

  35. Sea Mode

    Trev, this guy on your radar? Touted to be the next big thing at Clemson WR:
    https://theathletic.com/2164262/2020/11/12/clemson-ajou-ajou-canada-dabo-swinney/

    • Trevor

      He was big news coming from a small Alberta town to be a WR recruit at Clemson. The fact that he got playing time as a true freshman on that team was huge.

      He is not the athlete that Claypool is but he is a far more polished receiver and has good size with an incredible wingspan and hand size,

      He should star the next two years at Clemson and then I think he could be a 1st -2nd round pick depending on his 40 time. Anytime a kid from Canada with our lack of youth football development is starting as a freshman is a great sign.

      • Jordan

        On a somewhat related note, Jevon Holland’s Dad was the trainer for my Junior ‘A’ box lacrosse team way back when the Holland’s were based out of the Vancouver area.

  36. Rob Staton

    Danny O’Neil wondered if it’s a foregone conclusion that Wilson’s relationship with the Seahawks is now at a point where it’s no longer salvageable, comparing it to when a couple starts sleeping in separate beds before an eventual breakup or divorce.

    When even he’s saying this…

    • cha

      And he has shifted his displeasure from the general fanbase to Mike Florio as well.

      • Rob Staton

        I bet Florio is absolutely devastated

  37. JimQ

    A pro day result that needs to be KNOWN, as an OC or OG, his percentiles are outstanding. Quinn Mienerz UW-Whitewater. The Seahawks need both an OLG & a Center, this guy could be a good pick at either spot.
    Height: 6’3″ (19th percentile among guards), Weight: 320 (79th) – Maybe a shorter but stout center/OG helps RW see better rather than the 6′-5″/6′-6″ guys? If these were combine #’s Mienerz probably moves up a lot in the rankings with additional hype, but as pro day #’s, maybe not – too much?
    Vertical: 32 (90th) @ 320-lbs?
    Broad jump: 111 (90th) @ 320-lbs?
    40-yard: 4.86 (99th) @ 320-lbs? (A WOW # for an OL-men at that weight, even if a pro day #).
    Short shuttle: 4.47 (93rd) @ 320-lbs? (a WOW # at his size)
    3-cone: 7.33 (97th) @ 320-lbs? (A lot of much smaller players would kill for that kind of number!)

    IF at all possible, picking him as a late day-1 OL pick or early day-2 OL pick, the Seahawks could do a lot worse IMO. Plus it’s fun watching him “pancake guys bigger than he is”, with a nasty attitude to boot. Ever since Rob’s interview with him, I am hoping the Seahawks draft him somehow. I love his overall tough swagger too and I believe, with good coaching, he could be a pro-bowl quality OL-man in a year or two because of his demonstrated physical traits and attitude.

    A quick thought on QB-Kellen Mond. The Seahawks have historically shown a strong presence looking at some Texas A&M players and have drafted a few of them, this indicates to me that they must have a highly respected scout in that area of the country. MAYBE (??) they have QB-Mond in their sights to replace RW?

  38. JJ

    Rob,

    With Silver bringing up Carolina and Denver does that mean an expanded pool of teams Russ wants to go to, those teams that have approached the hawks or a nothingburger?

    Denver while they have an old d coach they do have a lot of potential weapons on the offensive side of the ball for Wilson.

    Carolina has Moore, Anderson and McCaffery.

    While neither is the big market that Wilson wants I can see some appeal. Carolina has an offensive minded staff and a new owner that seems to want to win.

    Thoughts?

    • BobbyK

      Chinn had better be coming to Seattle in any Russ-to-Carolina talk. In addition to a boatload of picks. I know Diggs is okay, but you don’t give up a 10-year starter because you have a solid older guy there now for 2021.

      • Matt

        Chinn allows you to trade Adam’s too.

        • BobbyK

          I’d trade Adams without Chinn. lol 🙂

    • Rob Staton

      No, I’m pretty sure it means the Seahawks know what’s on the table from Chicago and now they want to see if they can get other teams into the mix before making a decision.

      • Mike

        Gosh Carolina would make so much sense if russ was okay going there. High pick, good young players, cap space.

      • ScandicHawk

        Great call. Which one of Seattle’s radio stations would hire you over the current on air ‘talent’. (Huard’s the only guy I listen to – sometimes Millen, but he’s mostly college) Schneider has a pretty good track record spotting qb talent 😉 problem is a lot of teams need a qb this year and the Bears are deep at 20 for ‘elite’ qb talent. Schneider I’m sure is in love with one or two of them, but who? And will they be around at 20?

        Chris Simms is my favorite NFL analyst, not just with analyzing quarterbacks. (he called the playoff game, Rams over Wilson and the Seahawks this year – hated that. Would love to hear what he thinks in private about Wilson’s game over a beer.) Here’s his top qbs this year:

        1.Zach Wilson, BYU 2.Trevor Lawrence, Clemson 3.Mac Jones
        4.Kellen Mond, Texas A&M 5.Justin Fields, Ohio State 6.Trey Lance, North Dakota State

        No Davis or Trask. Would Davis last til 20? Maybe, his ceiling’s ridiculous but not much game tape/experience this year. Former 5 star at a very good quarterback school in Stanford, though. He’s my guy, for what it’s worth John!, lol. (it must count for something if it’s on the best Hawk website?)

  39. JJ

    3 first round picks Burns and Chinn?

    • Trevor

      Yes because the could trade Adams for a 1st too. So 4 1st round picks + Chinn and Burns on rookie deals.

  40. cha

    Garafolo on KJR talking Russ trade

    “Nothing imminent. Don’t see it happening soon. Path that he comes back.”

    Has there been communication between RW and the Seahawks org? “Yes, he’s spoken to the organization, I know that much.”

    Underlines Chicago’s desperation. “Bears most aggressive team by far. They’ve had repeat communication with Seattle. If phone calls were currency this deal would be done already.”

    “If they’re down to Nick Foles being the starting QB again, they’re screwed.”

    https://sportsradiokjr.iheart.com/featured/puck/content/2021-03-11-as-the-russ-turns-wmike-garafolo-audio/

    • Rob Staton

      Well if the Seahawks haven’t sorted this out one way or another by the start of free agency, they are an incompetent shambles

      But Mike Silver, who legitimately has the ear of someone high up in the Seahawks, said there should be a resolution by next week

      • cha

        I forgot to add – He guessed the draft is a deadline.

        • Trevor

          The start of free agency should be the deadline. How do you build a roster if you don’t know what your cap space, QB etc are. This needs to get resolved one way or another so the team can get on with things and same for any potential trade partner I think.

    • Ryan

      Serious question: Do the Bears even have enough to make it happen?

      I keep seeing Mack mentioned. Am I just not understanding the salary cap? Looking at Spotrac it seems like his cap hit this year is basically $27MM. I don’t care how good he is, I’m paying my DE $27 million? Pass. If we’re going to have one guy taking up a higher % of the cap that has ever been done and gone on to win the SB, it’ll be the QB, not one defensive lineman.

      It looks like anybody good on that team is already getting paid. So it’s what? Roquan Smith to make a little less and get a little younger than KJ? Jaylon Johnson as a decent CB? Cole Kmet? Is anybody on their interior OL really good, like Daniels or Whitehair?

      I’m just not sure 3 firsts in the 20s and a handful of spare parts is worth it.

      • dcd2

        The Bears would be on the hook for Mack’s signing bonus money. His cap hit to a new team would be:
        2021: ~$17M
        2022: ~$17M
        2023: ~$23M
        2024: ~$23M

        With zero dead cap if he were traded/cut after this year. It’s not bad at all for one of the best pass rushers in the NFL. He’d go from the most expensive DE in the NFL (with the Bears) to the 12th (with us).

        Roquan is about $3M (Bears paying the rest) this year, but a FA after. He’s 24 and has been quite good, but you would need to extend him this year, I would think.

        Johnson would be dirt cheap for 3 years… $900k, $1.2M, $1.5M. Kmet is on a similar structure and has about the same hit for the same 3 remaining years ($100k per year more).

        • Ryan

          Thank you for explaining the salary cap stuff. That makes more sense.

      • Rob Staton

        dcd2 is correct, you’d be getting Mack for $17m this year and $12m next — which would be incredible. After that you could then keep him for $17m or move on. It’s a bargain.

        People keep looking at this in the wrong way. If your idea of fair value is another franchise quarterback, it’s never going to happen. The only difference between a Bears trade and a Panthers trade is picking at #8 or #20 and having an elite pass rusher or not having an elite pass rusher. The difference between #8 and #20 this year is minimal in terms of this class — the only advantage is a better position from which to trade down.

        If the relationship is completely broken, they have to move on and take the best deal. If it wasn’t completely broken, they wouldn’t even be answering the phone.

        Three firsts, multiple day two picks and Khalil Mack seems like the best and most realistic offer to me.

        • dcd2

          I believe he has a $5.7M roster bonus in 22-24, that would be on us too.

          It does sound like the Bears are worried about bidding against themselves, while Seattle is trying to engage other teams or at least the illusion of ‘heightened interest’ to see if they can get more.

          Personally, I like the idea of the Panthers giving 8, 39, 73 Burns, Chinn and Derrick Brown, plus future picks. The difference between 8/39 & 20/52 is the (chart) equivalent of an extra 1st this year. Who knows if Carolina is even involved, would pay that much or if RW would waive his no-trade to play in Charlotte though.

          Either way, the Mack contract if he were traded would be more than fair, and like Rob says: seems like the best deal on the table. Carolina might be a non-starter for a variety of reasons.

  41. no frickin clue

    The thing I keep coming back to is, where is Jodie Allen in all this? We know she’s a hands-off owner, or interim owner, until the enterprise is sold. Fine. But she can’t be unaware that the face of the franchise is in a very public dust-up with the front office, right? She can’t be unaware that there’s considerable talk of trading the face of the franchise, the one guy who eats up a bigger chunk of the salary cap than anyone else, and the most important guy on the team.

    If this keeps getting more contentious, someone (her) is going to have to step in and either okay a trade for the best offer on the table, or fire Pete and find an offensive-minded head coach.

    And if she basically said “leave me out of it, I have no interest in football, do whatever you think you have to do” – then it’s Pete’s decision.

    But…what if Pete decides no offers out there provide enough of a haul to trade Russ?

    Then every press conference will be filled with the Getting After It/Guys Making Plays ™ kool-aid, and all the Seattle sportswriters, every week, will be doing their best Kevin Bacon impression from Animal House screaming “All is Well!”.

    • Rob Staton

      And if she basically said “leave me out of it, I have no interest in football, do whatever you think you have to do” – then it’s Pete’s decision.

      That’s exactly what it is. Thus, the five-year extension.

    • BobbyK

      Russell Wilson is the most important person in the franchise. Not Pete Carroll. So sickening for the ‘owner’ not to care enough to know that.

      • STTBM

        Agreed. The impending disaster could have, and should have, been prevented. Paul would never have let it get to this point.

        Allen is a disaster. Paul was not totally hands off: he hired Carrol and JS, but made them use a management philosophy he chose. He yearly forced Pete check his ego and hire 3-4 consultants–like Mike Pettine. He never let Pete just have his way and stop growing.

        Body is an utter failure as an owner. Apparently, she did nothing to prep for being an owner. Total loser, in my opinion.

        And if JS and PC and their staff didn’t suck so bad drafting OL, none of this may have gone down. Plenty of blame to go around…

  42. Rob Staton

    Florio on fire on KJR

    • Rob Staton

      Also, I am on tomorrow. So stay tuned…

      • ABCinco

        About time one of the Seattle stations reaches out!

      • Sea Mode

        👏

        • JJ

          Summary of what was said?

      • cha

        $50 if you call Danny O’Niell a wanker again

        • TomLPDX

          HeHe, that would be awesome!

        • charlietheunicorn

          That is KIRO, not KJR

          I assume he is on with softie softerson

          • Rob Staton

            Correct

            • charlietheunicorn

              Rib him about the UW football team, why have the sucked…… why are all the WRs bailing… that could make it very lively!

            • Big Mike

              Ask him why the Huskies basketball team canceled a game vs. Gonzaga 300 miles away in Spokane because of “travel concerns during Covid” but turned around and traveled 1200 miles to Riverside, CA to play UC-Riverside.

              Hint: thy knew they’d get beat by 40

        • Tomas

          Sweet Jesus, yes please on that. Long ago I enjoyed — sort of — O’Neill, but now he’s insufferably pompous … a wanker indeed.

      • BobbyK

        That’s awesome! About time!

  43. Sea Mode

    The QB School
    Kellen Mond Analysis, Part 2
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xGgCC4OLvP0&ab_channel=TheQBSchool

  44. KennyBadger

    I literally have no idea how the economics of this work, but seriously what does it take to make running SDB a sustainable profession? Rob is always $$$ and having cha, cigar, and interviews in the mix has been awesome. How much would paying for this platform turn people off?

    • Rob Staton

      Doing this full time would be a dream. I could also do so much more — videos and articles. There is a local studio I could hire too for better quality videos and streams.

      But in order to make it possible we’d be talking about either a massive influx of Patreon members, making the blog a full subscription service (and people sticking with it) or someone investing in the site.

      Some people are making a living out of their sites and times are changing in terms of how we consume material. But it would take a big commitment from the community and whether the demand is there, I’m not sure.

      At the moment the Patreon covers my costs — including hosting, supporting the obscene amount of data on this site (10 years of archived articles) and domain subscription — plus the sites I subscribe to (PFF, Athletic) in order to be able to access certain pieces of info.

      • Ed

        Grew up a Cowboy fan, but was a Hawks season ticket holder since 1995 (when my son was born) and passed the tickets on to him. I randomly found your site a few years ago and was one of many that encouraged you to start charging. I have at different times contributed to patreon. While it is a Hawks website, I actually only visit in the offseason lately because I find your draft insight bar none. I think if you want to make a living at it, I absolutely think you could by the way (matter of fact, you should be a pro scout that makes his way to GM), maybe you should make it more NFL draft A and Hawks B. You are no hack and all your stuff is original and if you get the fans from the other 31 teams interested in your sight, well, that’s a business my friend. Will be getting on board for patreon again (since it’s the offseason) and wish you luck in making this your profession, because you are extremely good at it.

        • Rob Staton

          Thanks Ed

      • KennyBadger

        I appreciate that this is a labor of love for you Rob and obviously the whole community benefits. Based on my meager contribution and occasional inane posting to the site, I’m in no position to lecture or advise. It’s too bad that there are ‘journalists’ in the local and national media who get paid to look out the window and describe the weather instead of trying to predict the cause. I’m not trying to recite previous posts for the sake of kissing ass but I hope that people who visit this site and appreciate the forum are willing to come around like I did and contribute. This is a site worth supporting.

    • Troy

      If you don’t already support Rob via patreon then you should think about starting, with all the years of great content I have enjoyed it only felt right to kick Rob a few dollars a month for all his hard work

      • Rob Staton

        Thanks Troy

        • TheOtherJordan

          Rob,

          Do you have to have a google or facebook account to use patreon? Any alternatives to patreon?

          • Rob Staton

            I don’t think you need Google or Facebook. I think you just register as you would any other site for Patreon.

      • Jace

        Completely agree. Signing up is super easy as well. There is a orange/red link on the side of SDB that says Become a patron if you want to sign up and help support Rob!

    • Brik

      I know that I like the content and check in on the articles daily. Making people pay would be a huge let down. Not saying it isn’t worth it, just know a lot of people aren’t willing to do that. (Me for one). If you want to profit I would start looking into selling ad space, but hopefully not at the expense of making coming here unbearable.

  45. charlietheunicorn

    Rob,

    When on the air, use some British phrases such as …..

    Rubbish, Bender, “I’m knackered”, Arse and “That was a right bodge job”

    All of which could be worked into any RW talk….

    I would try to listen and would definitely laugh my azz off if you said any or all of these during your interview.

  46. Pugs1

    Someone on Twitter posted the picture they put up of Russ on the stadium. Not saying it means much but I do think it’s the Seahawks pouring cold water on the season ticket holder’s letter.

    • Rob Staton

      I don’t think there’s any cold water to pour on the letter really. Mike Florio more or less spelled it out. If there’s any chance at all that Wilson is dealt, don’t put him in the letter. That’s just a smart legal approach.

      Of course, mentioning a bunch of record-setting players and leaving out the record setting Walter Payton ‘man of the year’ also leads to a whole bunch of drama. They shouldn’t have mentioned any players — then there’s no story.

      • BobbyK

        I thought the exact same thing. Why even mention any players? Just put out the vanilla bull of celebrating a 12-4 record or something like that. So dumb. Just like making Benson Mayowa your lead pass rush dog going into a season!

        • Gary

          … or like giving a washed-up has been like Bruce Irvin a substantial raise.

          • BobbyK

            No doubt. Teams generally don’t like to let good players leave/go. Irvin played for 4 different teams the previous 3 seasons. He’s not good enough for anyone to want, yet somehow Pete Carroll thinks he can be the answer in Seattle (when they knew full well he wasn’t even good enough in his prime to warrant having his 5th year option picked up). Unbelievable.

      • Tomas

        Please don’t ban me from the site, but I’ll admit here that I’m a retired lawyer, practiced law for 30 years, and believe Florio’s liability concerns are exaggerated, unless the decision to trade Russ was set in stone. Even then, the risk of a wave of lawsuits, or a class action suit, is almost zero, for the simple reason that damages to an offended season-ticket holder could be fully addressed by a simple refund of the ticket costs. There’s no real possibility of inflated “pain and suffering” damages, or the like, that might interest a hungry lawyer. An entity such as the Seahawks doesn’t fear a nuisance lawsuit, easily dismissed, brought by an imaginary publicity-seeking plaintiff lawyer. I believe the real significance of the decision to delete Russ is that it’s meant as a slap in the face to him – nothing less than Pete giving the middle finger to Russ – and is a sure indicator that, as Rob and a few others have suggested – the great Russell Wilson, faithful soldier for nine years, will be gone from the Seahawks within days, or weeks. I like Florio, by the way.

        • Rob Staton

          So what if 30,000 subsequent refund requests follow? What then?

          As Florio explained in detail — a lawyer’s main job in that situation is to imagine the worst case scenario and prevent it from happening. Not including Wilson in the letter is avoiding the worst case scenario of thousands of people making that refund request which would be a PR disaster along with a financial disaster.

          I think Florio is 100% correct that they played caution to the wind because they ‘could’ trade him. The own goal here is that they mentioned any players at all, to make this a talking point. They should’ve just said we can’t wait to have the best fans in the NFL returning to Lumen Field etc etc

  47. Sea Mode

    According to her source, the sticking points would be who plays QB for the Hawks and not wanting to trade him to a team where he can have success. 🤔

    Get Up
    @GetUpESPN
    ·10h

    Two months ago @diannaESPN would have told you there’s no chance Russell Wilson gets traded. But now …

    “This thing has been picking up steam … Those in league circles believe that there’s a good chance this could happen if a team is desperate enough to make this trade.”

    https://twitter.com/GetUpESPN/status/1370032255897378816

    • Rob Staton

      Which is exactly the point I’d be putting in the public domain if I was the Seahawks to get the best possible deal.

      ‘What do we do at QB? You better make this worth our while if you expect us to go down that road’

      • BruceN

        At what point do you think there is a chance CHI’s offer may get so sweet that the Texans may enter the deal and trade Watson? Or there’s no chance they’ll trade him?

        • BobbyK

          Nobody is untouchable for the right price. The greatest hockey player in the history of the NHL was traded in his prime. There’s a price for almost anything! I can definitely see Houston swoop in if the offer to Seattle got ridiculous enough.

        • Rob Staton

          It’s possible — but I think the Dolphins and Panthers would go just as sweet

    • ElPasoHawk

      What this says to me is Chicago knows they have the best offer on the table and are bidding against themselves. The Hawks are telling them come VERY large with your offer cause we are already starting to smooth the waters with Russ. Big game of chicken, just curious what they’ve offered and at what point do the Bears push all of their chips in to save their jobs. If they think the Hawks are bluffing and don’t go all in, I hope the Hawks have the smarts to smooth over the waters and see what next offseason brings.

      • Ed

        I think the Hawks would be smart to just trade Russ. They won’t let him cook, so why pay a QB 35+ to hand the ball off and hope Russ pulls magic in the 4th. PC is delusional to not adapt, but it’s his show, so make it your show Pete. Trade him, get a boat load, draft a stud RB and some young hungry defenders and go back to 2013.

        • ElPasoHawk

          I agree, Pete needs to be true to his philosophy. I know it’s not a popular opinion but I don’t think that means RRP. It is more of a desire to be physical, protect the ball, prevent big plays on D, and make several big plays on O. People forget that in Pete’s system Russ has been considered a hall of game QB. If you are going to trade him, you have to set a new standard for value in trading a QB of that stature.

        • JJ

          Wilson threw the ball just as much in the 2nd half. What changed was the tempo.

          • Hughz

            What changed was the opposing defenses and they didn’t adjust at all.

  48. Gary

    cha, thank you for your impressive summary of the linebacker group and situation. It was refreshing to read such a fair and balanced assessment of Bobby Wagner’s season. When you put it like that, it’s actually a reflection of his greatness that he was able to have the season he did. I had originally been in the trade Bobby camp, despite likely a limited return. But now if the Hawks do the right thing and move on from both Russell and Adams and get a haul in return, I think I’m in favour of bringing Bobby back and giving him a chance to be a Hawk for life. He is a Seahawks legend. Thanks again for a very informative and enjoyable read.

    • AlaskaHawk

      Cha, you’ve done an excellent job of analyzing each position group. Thanks.

      Though they have spent alot of money on the linebackers, I think it was money well spent. Wagner, KJ Wright, and Brooks have been solid. The issues on defense were on the line and cornerback play. I’m in favor of moving some of Wagners salary as cha described, and resigning KJ for at least one more year. I hate to commit to a long contract with either player due to age. Having resigned KJ, I would also resign Dunbar for some help on the line.

      That would just leave gaps at cornerback to fill, and possibly backup safety, and another linebacker to be be drafted.

  49. Gary

    Rob, I haven’t seen their names come up anywhere, but are Pete Werner (Ohio State) and James Skalski (Clemson) draft eligible?

    • Rob Staton

      Werner is in this class, Skalski returned to Clemson

  50. Scot04

    Rob wanted your opinion on the two Jalen options for Seattle. If you’ve seen any tape on either of them.
    Possible mid to late round options depending on Pro days?

    Jalen Virgil’s vertical jump of 40.5, & broad jump of 10’11”.
    Those marks would correspond to a 9.7 and 9.73 RAS score, respectively. Both marks would place Virgil among the top-100 wide receivers of all-time.
    His speed is crazy. He is also a track guy.
    10.29-second 100-meter dash. That roughly corresponds to a 4.35 40-yard dash, which would give Virgil a 9.98 RAS and place him fifth all-time at the position.
    Work in progress with huge upside. The cuts he makes are insane, will at worst come in as special teamer/kick returner for 2021. If coached up could be late round steal. Weapon for new OC in Seattle.

    Jalen Camp’s wide receiver.
    Camp can bench press 225 pounds 30 times and maxes out at 405 pounds. Thirty reps at the bench press would give Camp a perfect 10 RAS and would be an all-time record for the wide receiver position, out of more than 1,500 participants.
    Camp is big, and he is strong, & fast,  has been clocked at a 4.4-second 40-yard dash, which would give him a 9.39 RAS grade.
    That time would put Camp close to the top 150 wide receivers all-time.
    Metcalf 2.0? Just look at the guy. Came back after a year off with injury. Healthy for 2020. Fun to watch catching passes from Hooker.
    Saw interview with him in August of 2020, smart kid who loves football. I think he would be a guy you’d like to interview on a podcast.

    And thanks for keeping up the great content.

    • Rob Staton

      I’ve only watched Jalen Camp. Grown man. Lot’s of physical positives but lots of inconsistency too. Worth a late round or UDFA look IMO.

  51. Sea Mode

    Expected him to be freaky, but wow.

    Dane Brugler
    @dpbrugler
    ·12h

    #Texas EDGE Joseph Ossai

    6036, 256 lbs, 33 7/8″ arms
    41.5″ vert
    10’11” broad
    19 reps

    Vid: https://mobile.twitter.com/SlaterNFL/status/1370098559542915074

    • Rob Staton

      He is a bit stiff and leggy though. You can see little bits on tape but you also see a lot that makes you think… he’s not fluid, probably has to play with a runway

  52. Sea Mode

    Percy in the full nelson 😂

    https://mobile.twitter.com/RealMikeRob/status/1367995623346221057

    Also, are we subscribing to his view that Seattle got rid of all the alpha males except Bobby and KJ so that it could be Russ’ team?

  53. Mick

    Is it clear by now what picks do we have this draft? I mean, the minority picks are out, the compensatory picks are out. Do we have a 2nd, a 4th, a 5th, no 6th and two 7th?

    • Rob Staton

      I’m not sure it’s two 7th’s although I know that’s what wikipedia suggests.

  54. Rob Staton

    https://twitter.com/howaboutafresca/status/1370229742515884038

    Re: Today’s Russell Wilson developments. Too much has gone down with Russ and the Seahawks for them to come back from this. Wilson’s not trying to mend fences, and the Seahawks are clearly not trying to make things better. He’s getting traded.

  55. James Kupihea

    Still..the masses continue to chant “dead cap hit” and “no team could pony up”.

    • Rob Staton

      A cocktail of disbelief, denial and laziness I’m afraid

      • Group Captain Mandrake

        I have yet to understand this argument. We’ve seen that it’s possible to work around the salary cap for years. New Orleans, for instance, keeps kicking the can down the road and there really doesn’t seem to be any incentive for teams to stop doing so if they want. Which kind of makes me wonder why there’s a cap at all since it doesn’t really mean much if teams don’t want it to.

  56. KG

    https://mobile.twitter.com/dabearsblog/status/1370300806562480129

    Sounds like the Bears have made a formal offer to the Seahawks. This DBB guy has a very good reputation among Bear fans.

  57. HaroldSeattle

    Enjoyed hearing Jacson Bevens saying there is no offer worth trading RW unless it brings back a Watson like QB. Cap space and draft picks are nice, but too often they end up being whiffs and not worth trading a difference maker like RW.
    Also appreciated him wanting to talk about some things the Seahawks could do besides trading RW that make sense. That hasn’t been talked about enough IMO. So many things are possible with extensions, trades etc. and those possible moves just haven’t been explored enough with all the chaos of talking “will the Seahawks trade RW and to who and for how much”.
    I too hope that with Waldron, that more short and intermediate passes are installed into the Seahawks offense and fewer 50 yards kill shots.

  58. HaroldSeattle

    Just saw the Patriots resigned Cam Newton. An example of how sad a great franchise without their franchise QB can become. Please don’t let the Seahawks go that route.

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