NFL Mock Draft: Update 21st January & more notes

For the first time since Sunday — I’ve contemplated the Seahawks not taking an offensive lineman in round one.

The reason?

This class has some really interesting hidden gems.

There’s a lot of value to be had here — and that’s a good thing. A lot of the top prospects could be off the board by pick #26. Not having to force anything would be beneficial to the Seahawks. It’s not unrealistic to think five or six linemen could be gone by the time they’re on the clock.

Their philosophy has been to shoot for athletic, upside linemen. I want to highlight two prospects I’ve watched in the last 24 hours that appear to fit that approach.

Alex Lewis (T, Nebraska)
After rave reviews at the Shrine Game, I put on USC vs Nebraska from the 2014 season. Lewis showed excellent hand placement, a more than adequate kick-slide and enough athleticism and mobility. He even scored a touchdown in the game — working as an eligible receiver. He’s had some issues and that will limit his stock. He was jailed for 28 days in 2014. According to ESPN’s Mitch Sherman, “witnesses said Lewis repeatedly slammed the head of 22-year-old Lee Bussey into a brick wall and punched the Air Force cadet, who was knocked unconscious.” He also had a bizarre Twitter rant against Nebraska’s fans in 2015 after they criticised him for a personal foul penalty. There’s no denying his upside though — and he seems to be turning over a new leaf. He’s 6-6 and 302lbs with 33.5 inch arms. He could play right tackle.

Fahn Cooper (T, Ole Miss)
I was blown away by Cooper when I went back and watched two Ole Miss games. He’s a thoroughly competent blocker who filled in on the left side when Laremy Tunsil was unavailable. Watching interviews — he’s a well spoken, intelligent tackle who understands scheme and his role. He’s a good size — 6-5, 304lbs with 34.5 inch arms. He’s an athletic player who’d be worth a look on the blind side. He has a natural knee bend (so does Lewis) and he’s adept at working 1v1. Every year there’s a tackle who just flies under the radar and ends up being a real value pick. I wouldn’t be surprised at all if Cooper is that guy. I’m not convinced the drop off from players like Jason Spriggs is all that far. And while you’d rather have a Tunsil if possible — it isn’t going to work out that way for the Seahawks.

Tony Pauline had both players rated as 6th round picks. They appear to be improving their stock during the Shrine Game. I don’t think it’d be a shocker if either works their way into the third or fourth round.

When you also factor in the emergence of Michigan center/guard Graham Glasgow — there is a realistic way for the Seahawks to add some depth and competition to their line without necessarily having to force things if the right guy isn’t there at #26. Could upgrades and competition come in rounds 3-5 via players like Lewis, Cooper, Graham, Connor McGovern or others?

It could theoretically allow them to look at a pass rusher in round one — or a cornerback or linebacker. I haven’t done that in this updated mock draft but it’s food for thought.

Contributor ‘bobbyk’ also raised the possibility of Seattle looking at Minnesota’s Phil Loadholt. He turned 30 today and has a cap hit of $7.75m in 2016. He didn’t play a single game in 2015 and missed five games in 2014. Loadholt is a possible cap casualty in Minnesota. Darrell Bevell was on the Vikings staff when he was drafted in the second round.

The Seahawks like size at right tackle (Breno Giacomini was very tall) and they’ve also looked for size at left guard (James Carpenter). Loadholt, if he’s released, could be a relatively cheap, veteran addition.

First round mock draft

I’ve included three trades in the projection…

#1 Tennessee — Joey Bosa (DE, Ohio State)
They already have two top-11 picks on their offensive line (Taylor Lewan, Chance Warmack). They have Marcus Mariota and Dorial Green-Beckham to build around. It’s time to add a defensive focal point.

#2 Cleveland — Paxton Lynch (QB, Memphis)
Teams will believe they can win with Lynch. He’s big, mobile, accurate and led a Memphis team to a winning season against the odds. A poor man’s Cam Newton.

#3 San Diego — Laremy Tunsil (T, Ole Miss)
He missed most of the 2015 season but played well against Texas A&M’s explosive pass-rusher Myles Garrett.

**TRADE** #4 St. Louis — Jared Goff (QB, California
The Rams trade up to try and find an answer at quarterback. They’re moving to L.A. and need to take a step forward. They aren’t doing that with Case Keenum.

#5 Jacksonville — DeForest Buckner (DE, Oregon)
The Jags welcome back Dante Fowler in 2016 and pair him with their answer to Michael Bennett. Buckner is a disruptive force that can line up inside and out.

#6 Baltimore — Eli Apple (CB, Ohio State)
Length, speed and smarts. NFL teams will view Apple as an ideal corner prospect to develop. He doesn’t get beat deep and keeps everything in front.

**TRADE** #7 Philadelphia — Carson Wentz (QB, North Dakota State)
The Niners give Colin Kaepernick another shot and trade with the Eagles. Philly turns the page on the Chip Kelly era by giving Doug Pederson his own QB.

#8 Miami — Mackensie Alexander (CB, Clemson)
The Dolphins need to improve their secondary. Alexander is a fiery competitor who loves to talk. He plays above his listed size.

#9 Tampa Bay — Myles Jack (LB, UCLA)
Jack is an explosive athlete recovering from a knee injury. The Buccs put him next to Levonte David and behind block-absorbing Gerald McCoy.

#10 New York Giants — Darron Lee (LB, Ohio State)
A well spoken leader who looks like a 4.4 runner with great instinct. He could be a big-time riser over the next couple of months.

#11 Chicago — Jaylon Smith (LB, Notre Dame)
He drops a bit due to injury but not too far. Smith is an exceptional player and someone you can truly build around on defense. Could be the top talent in the draft.

#12 New Orleans — Andrew Billings (DT, Baylor)
The Saints need a nose tackle and they’ve been looking for a while. Billings is all brute strength and if he tests well could go in this range.

**TRADE** #13 San Francisco — Taylor Decker (T, Ohio State)
After moving down six spots, the Niners bring in a new tackle. With Anthony Davis retired and Alex Boone likely departing — they need to repair that O-line.

#14 Oakland — Jaylen Ramsey (CB, Florida State)
He’s a tweener. Does he have the hips and quicks to match up with elite suddenness? Or is he a permanent safety?

**TRADE** #15 Dallas — Robert Nkemdiche (DE, Ole Miss)
The Cowboys are never afraid to roll the dice. Nkemdiche might be a head-case but he’s talented. Jerry Jones approves.

#16 Detroit — Ronnie Stanley (T, Notre Dame)
He’s overrated but admittedly there is some pass-pro upside. Someone will take a shot. He doesn’t get to the second level or play with an edge.

#17 Atlanta — Laquon Treadwell (WR, Ole Miss)
Imagine pairing Treadwell with Julio Jones. If the Falcons can upgrade their defense in free agency — they can afford a pick like this.

#18 Indianapolis — Jack Conklin (T, Michigan State)
Just a hard-nosed, blue-collar tough guy who fought his way into this range as a walk-on at MSU. Not an amazing athlete — but someone teams will love.

#19 Buffalo — Leonard Floyd (OLB, Georgia)
A tall, thin linebacker suited to the 3-4. He could easily be another Aaron Maybin. The Bills do need to find players that fit the Rex Ryan scheme.

#20 New York Jets — Ezekiel Elliott (RB, Ohio State)
He could be a superstar in New York. Chris Ivory is a free agent and went off the boil in 2015 after a good start.

#21 Washington — Corey Coleman (WR, Baylor)
The minute they sign Kirk Cousins to a mega-deal, they have to put weapons around him. Coleman could replace DeSean Jackson if he’s cut.

#22 Houston — Will Fuller (WR, Notre Dame)
Fuller is a dynamite playmaker. Picking this late limits their ability to get at the QB’s. Whoever starts at QB might as well throw to Fuller and DeAndre Hopkins.

#23 Minnesota — Shon Coleman (T, Auburn)
Maybe Coleman won’t rise into the top-10 where he belongs? He’s still an awesome lineman. He should go much earlier.

#24 Cincinnati — Jarran Reed (DT, Alabama)
A brutish defensive tackle who excels in the run game. They add another layer of toughness to their defensive front.

#25 Pittsburgh — Kendall Fuller (CB, Virginia Tech)
Their secondary is a mess and needs addressing. Fuller is recovering from injury but has the bloodlines and the talent to go in this range.

#26 Seattle — Cody Whitehair (T, Kansas State)
The Seahawks take the technically gifted, athletic Whitehair and plug him in at either left guard or center.

#27 Green Bay — Kyler Fackrell (LB, Utah State)
The Packers need more athleticism at linebacker and somebody who can cover and rush. Fackrell feels like a Green Bay type of player.

**TRADE** #28 Cleveland — Michael Thomas (WR, Ohio State)
The Browns move up from #32 to #28, swapping picks with the Chiefs, to add a much needed receiver. Thomas is a big target with great agility.

#29 Denver — Germain Ifedi (T, Mississippi State)
Some people think he’ll drop into the middle rounds. He’s very muscular and in good shape. There’s plenty to work with here at tackle or guard.

#30 Arizona — Adolphus Washington (DE, Ohio State)
Flits in and out of games. Goes from impactful to anonymous. Projects well to DE in the 3-4. Fits Arizona’s scheme.

#31 Carolina — Jeremy Cash (S, Duke)
They could use some youth and an upgrade at safety. It’s not a great class overall but Cash seems to be rising.

Some players of interest after round one

Paul Perkins (RB, UCLA)
Eric Striker (LB, Oklahoma)
Marquez North (WR, Tennessee)
Ronald Blair (DE, Appalachian State)
Justin Zimmer (DE, Ferris State)
Zack Sanchez (CB, Oklahoma)
Deion Jones (LB, LSU)
Xavien Howard (CB, Baylor)
Fahn Cooper (T, Ole Miss)
Graham Glasgow (C, Michigan)
Alex Lewis (T, Nebraska)
Joe Dahl (T, Washington State)
Miles Killebrew (S, Southern Utah)
Connor McGovern (T, Missouri)
Braxton Miller (WR, Ohio State)
Charles Tapper (DE, Oklahoma)

Further thoughts on the Seahawks

I sense they had a fair bit of interest in Mitch Morse last year. He was taken by Kansas City a few picks before Seattle were on the clock in round two. Having the opportunity to draft Whitehair would give them a chance to move him inside to left guard or center.

There are some similarities to Zack Martin. At Notre Dame, Martin was the left tackle due to his superior athletic qualities and technical brilliance. Whitehair was put on the blind side for the same reasons — and even though he lacks great length he was still a big success in 2015.

Martin was destined to be a first rounder from the moment he stepped on campus at Notre Dame. Whitehair is more of a self-made man — but that shouldn’t be any concern.

Whether he fits in at left guard (replacing Justin Britt) or center (replacing Patrick Lewis) probably depends on what else they’re able to do. The intention in this mock scenario would be to add possibly two more offensive linemen.

With draft depth on the O-line (and the possibility they will move on from Russell Okung, thus saving money) — they might have the ability to do what they’ve done so well in the past — add a free agent pass rusher. Whether it’s Michael Bennett and Cliff Avril or the failed attempts to land Henry Melton and Jared Allen — the Seahawks have looked to use the market to bolster their pass rush.

Miami’s Olivier Vernon could be one to watch. He had 7.5 sacks in 2015 (and 29 in a four-year career so far). He might command big dollars on the open market. If, like Bennett and Avril, it’s not as hot as he thought — he might consider a one or two-year prove-it deal. He’s only 25 so time’s on his side.

You could argue — why not just use any free cash to keep Bruce Irvin? It could be a combination of age (he turns 29 this year) and a possible desire to adapt that position (do they go for a safety hybrid?). They might also need any free money to put a package together to keep Jeremy Lane. 2015 showed they need cornerbacks that understand the scheme to operate effectively. Losing Lane would be a potential disaster — and if they overpay to keep any of their own FA’s, it might be Lane.


  1. Jorel Burkholder

    As always, thanks for the wonderful coverage Rob. You are one of only a few blogs I read everyday.

    • Rob Staton

      Thanks man.

  2. Volume12

    Big fan of Cody Whitehair. I’d be pretty excited over this pick. The comp to Zack Martin is interesting and a good one.

    Alex Lewis has my antennae up. His ‘red flags’ are so reminiscent of Tyler Sambrailo aren’t they? Someone we know Seattle liked and was high on last year.

    There’s also the PC and Bo Pelini connection. Granted, they’re both defensive guys, but Seattle has scouted Nebraska the past few years.

    I’m really starting to like the options at O-line in the mid rounds. Still think they draft an O-lineman with their 1st overall selection, but there’s some really good talent from the 1st-4th.

  3. Volume12

    Rob, what do you think of LSU’s Jalen Mills? I noticed he’s listed as a CB at the Senior bowl, which seems to be the better position for him.

    • Rob Staton

      I need to do more on him. He’s someone I’m keen to get a look at.

  4. Darnell

    Awesome Rob.

    You don’t see A’Shawn as a first rounder or of any interest to the Hawks beyond the 1st?

    • Rob Staton

      I think he’s destined to be a run of the mill, average defensive tackle at the next level. A starter, but not a game-changer.

      • Darnell

        A man amongst boys now, but ultimately just another man amongst men at the next level when physical mismatches become rarer?

        • Rob Staton

          A fair assessment — but he doesn’t even dominate in college really.

      • HI Hawk

        He’ll be fun to watch for me personally. I think he is more likely to be a stud in the NFL, his skills were underutilized at Alabama. 2-gap defensive ends are never going to pop on tape, his athleticism will be better used on a defense that emphasizes penetration and disruption. He could be a steal if he gets out of the first round. He could also be a bust, but then again – so could Joey Bosa.

    • Volume12

      The real stud on that line was Johnathan Allen. Not that Reed isn’t.

      But, someone told me that Allen is 285+ and runs a sub 4.8.

      • KyleT

        Yes, this! It’s so obvious to once you look at these guys up close. Allen is a beast, would love to get him in the second round, just not sure where we would plug him in. Maybe as depth in the Dobbs 3-tech role?

        • Volume12

          It would have to be next year. He returned for his Senior season.

  5. Nathan_12thMan

    I just hope after 60+ days of reading these awesome draft possibilities we don’t end up doing something disappointing. Please dear god let us draft another Glowinski type not another Britt/Carpenter type…another Tyler/Golden type not another Norwood type…by that I don’t mean athletic profile but ability to be productive on the field.

    We have done so well, and then so… “meh” if not poorly in a bunch of areas. We draft P-Rich who could be a star but staying healthy is a key problem, and we draft Norwood who is a big pile of nothing, but then we draft Tyler Lockett and the dude is an elite WR and All-Pro returner.

    We draft Britt who is the worst RT ever in the history of the universe (hyperbole) and a pretty bad LG in his first year at that position, we draft other disappointing O-linemen (Moffitt, Carp, etc) but then we seem to have a really good O-line pick in Glow taken in the 4th round. So it is clear that we have the potential to make good decisions at O-line through the draft.
    So I just hope we draft smart and after reading these articles here and in other places, it truly sounds like there are technically sound gems out there that I am so pumped for us to potentially take.

    Rob; How highly do you value staying healthy for WR’s? I notice (specifically about WR’s) that what matters most to me is there ability to stay healthy and be on the field. It doesn’t matter if you are the best WR in the draft if you seem to miss 4-6 games every season due to high ankle sprains or are prone to tendon tears or w/e.
    I was reading up on Marquez North and he seems to have a history of injuries. Do you feel like there is enough evidence of players in college with injury histories coming into the NFL and not having those injury problems continue that you don’t place much stock in their injury past/proneness? Or the talent is just so good and the price so right (where they could go) that you’d take them even with the potential for them to miss games due to injuries?

    To me guys like Doug, Golden, Tyler and even Jermaine are worth so much because they are always on the field healthy. P-Rich (and others like Tharold at CB and maybe KPL at LB) not being able to stay healthy and play makes w/e potential they have nullified, cause talent at home in a cast or on crutches doesn’t help us come game day.

    Personally I’d rate my most desired qualities for WR’s as such: Not prone to injuries, Route Running, Hands, Speed, Dynamic athleticism, etc.
    Need to be healthy to be on the field, need to win routes to get the ball thrown to you (best hands in the NFL doesn’t help if you can’t get separation), hands are important but i’d rather have a WR who gets open a lot and drops some than a WR who gets open rarely but drops nothing, speed is sweet but I feel like a lot of burners are prone to injury (PRich, Harvin, DeSean Jackson, etc), then being dynamic (high vert, 50/50 ball winner, great body control, winning contested catches, etc).

    • Rob Staton

      The ability to stay healthy is crucial.

      • Nathan_12thMan

        Will be awesome to watch this all play out…who we draft where and before that what we do in FA and such.

        What I like most about this article is how you are finding gems in the 4th and 3rd rounds. If we can get impactful play from rookies in those rounds it is huge. We have spots on our roster where rookies can immediately make an impact (RB, O-line, D-line, potentially LB, Corner, WR). We could find a WR who slots in at WR5 and is impactful, we could find O-linemen who compete in camp and earn starting jobs all over the line, we could find a DT who immediately makes our pass rush better, so many cool possibilities.

        • C-Dog

          If they can’t reach a deal with Kearse and spend 26 on a player like Whitehair, I could see them targeting a player like Braxton Miller maybe in the late R3 range that has Kearse’s measurables but has the upside to be something significantly special in a couple seasons.

    • Darnell

      I bet you really liked Darrell Jackson. Great routes, great separation, not a burner, had a tendency for some bad drops.

      • HI Hawk

        I loved Darrell Jackson! Kearse has always reminded me of D-Jack. He’s been more of a poor man’s version to date, but a little more clutch.

  6. CA

    I love the notion of being able to spare a 1st round pick on and OL to take another position of need(CB, DL, LB or WR) but I wouldn’t be upset if they landed a OL in R1(I’m partial to Dahl, Go Cougs). Until we learn more about offseason moves, for now with R1, 2, 3 and 3 I feel like two of those picks need to address the OL, one pick on the DL and another at CB in no real particular order. They can then take shots after R3 at WR, RB, S, or LB.

    GREAT work Rob I love your insight and depth of research. Keep it up- personally this blog is a must visit on the regular.

    • Rob Staton

      Thanks man.

    • Nathan_12thMan

      I don’t know how I feel about CB there. TBH yes we need a CB, but if the FO feels like there is CB talent they like and can develop in the 4th-6th then I say let that position fall down there. Tye Smith, Tharold Simon, DeShawn Shead, potential talent Pete likes on the P-squad, Lane if we re-sign him…we have a need at CB but not a huge need, especially if Tharold can stay healthy in 2016. Also if we sign any FA’s (say Thurmond?) that helps the secondary as well.

      But other positions…WR and RB (for a 3rd round pick)…to me those are stronger needs. Assuming we sign CMike we will have a RB1 and RB2, with our best RB3 on the roster being D-Bronson. To me the addition of a really talented RB who can handle 3rd down back duties for us (receiving, blocking, rushing) but also has the potential to be a RB1 given their talent (Paul Perkins? Kenneth Dixon?) is a big deal. Having that impactful of talent be added to the RB corp would be big. If (god forbid) CMike or Rawls went down the RB we drafted can step up and our run game still bring the heat.

      At WR if we don’t re-sign Kearse we really only have three proven WR’s and one hasn’t proven the ability to stay healthy very well (P-Rich). I have high hopes for Kasen and Kevin but so far on the field on game day we haven’t seen much if anything. So if we can draft a impactful & talented WR that will help give our WR corp better depth which we just 2-3 proven guys is really quite important.

      • Volume12

        I think it’s safe to say, they’ll draft a CB whether he makes the team or not.

        Every year under PC/JS they’ve selected a CB and O-lineman.

        • Nathan_12thMan

          …I never said they wouldn’t. Of course they will, my point was that I think we have bigger needs that can be more impactful right away (WR, RB) that can be taken in those first 3 rounds, and that I hope we grab a CB in the 4th or lower (assuming our FO has their eye on talent there that they really like) that works out.

          To me a WR or RB in the 3rd round (instead of a CB) can have immediate impact if they are a good rookie acquisition (like Lockett and Rawls). Where as a CB basically never starts their rookie year. They are like Tye Smith and develop over the course of at least their rookie season, get developed as a Seahawk CB.

        • Brincke

          The Hawks also have Stanley Jean-Baptiste (former 2nd pick) and George Farmer signed to futures contracts, so there are a lot of guys to make a competition. That being said, I think they will draft a CB around round 5-7 as they normally do – unless Eli Apple somehow is there for them at 26..

          Personally, I hope Pete can work some magic on SJB.

  7. CHawk Talker Eric

    In this mock I’m betwixt Whitehair at LG/C, and Ifedi at RT/LG.

    Ifedi looks like he should (could?) be a special athlete, but he doesn’t show it conclusively, and I have lingering worries about why he didn’t make the usual progression to LT.

  8. bobbyk

    Good point about Vernon. In addition to those 7.5 sacks last year, he also had over 11 sacks just three years ago. In his four year career, he’s already got almost 30 sacks. Getting him to a Bennett or Avril “prove it” contract would be awesome since he’s still young. It’d also eliminate that “pass rusher” comment from Carroll with respect to potentially using a high pick. That’d be a cool addition.

    I agree about Lane being that one FA guy that they could overpay for. I had so much more confidence in this defense with him at RCB, as opposed to he not being on the field. If he wouldn’t have gotten hurt, there’s great chance we would have won the Super Bowl and a darn good chance we wouldn’t have blown all those fourth quarter leads earlier in the year. Oh well…

    You can’t find “tape” on Denver Kirkland unless you watch highlights of the Arkansas RBs/TE, but he’s an interesting option for LG. He’s 6’5″ and weights about 340. He played RG as a sophomore and had three penalties all season and only gave up one sack. He was moved to LT as a junior (he’s leaving college early) and played well. We all know Cable loves college left tackles and shifting them to guard. Kirkland fits this. I’ve seen Kirkland going as high as the early second round and as late as the end of the fourth.

    • bigDhawk

      I’m all for an entire OL of road graders. Our current fast, athletic OL model is completely overrated. They don’t move anyone and get moved, themselves. So our offensive linemen can supposedly beat their opponent to the point of attack. Big deal. They can’t do anything when they get to the point of attack so what’s the point?. The problem is compounded when you have starters in that group like Britt that are neither fast nor athletic.

      Going back to the Rams loss near the end of the season, the focus was on how their DL dominated our OL, But what I thought even more alarming was how their OL handled our DL. They don’t fit our ‘fast, athletic’ model with the exception of Robinson. They are mostly big, lumbering tree stumps. Yet our DL didn’t lay a finger on Keenum all game. What’s more, Tim Barnes, their center, made two two fumble recoveries just on pure effort and heads up play. Long story short, I’m worn out out on the ZBS and fleet-footed yet punchless, light-in-the-pants O-linemen. I’d like to see a line full of maulers that may not get where they’re going as fast, but can do damage when they get there.

  9. cha

    “**TRADE** #4 St. Louis β€” Jared Goff (QB, California”

    Nice to know I’m not the only one who’s still getting used to calling them Los Angeles..LOL

  10. Nathan

    What about some cap cuts for a pass rusher?

    De marcus Ware, Julius Peppers, Mario williams.

    Few names who could(or in williams case, definitely will) be on the market.

    • Rob Staton

      Ware and Peppers just too old IMO. Williams appeals but will probably get a decent contract somewhere. I think they need to shoot for value here and look for a guy (like Vernon) who can come in on a deal perhaps similar to Jabaal Sheard’s in New England.

      • Trevor

        Still wish we had figured out a way to get Sheard last year. He was real good for NE this year.

    • Nathan

      I can’t see why he wouldn’t have a good market, I didn’t see many of his games, but apparently he had a big finish to the year.

  11. C-Dog

    “The Seahawks take the technically gifted, athletic Whitehair and plug him in at either left guard or center.”

    Technically gifted and athletic are the operative words that are music to my ears. If Seattle takes Whitehair at 26, and then hits on Fahn Cooper later on to compete at OT, I think I would be doing back flips, or at least a very feeble attempt that might land me in the ER.

    • bobbyk

      I really haven’t paid much attention to the draft since we were so consumed by the season. With that being said, I can’t believe how many OL prospects that I actually like. It’s a little comforting to know that such good prospects are going to be available through our Byron Maxwell pick at the end of the third round. I’m starting to think that if Shon Coleman isn’t available at #26 that trading down or waiting until the second round isn’t such a horrible idea (I would have vomited in my mouth at this idea a few weeks ago). That being said, they are pretty much forced to use their second and one of their thirds on OL if they do go with a pass rusher at #26.

      • C-Dog

        I wouldn’t put it past them to go pass rush at 26, I’m just not sure who that player is. I could see them going OL really easy there, and maybe even again in the R2 or at the very least R3.

        I would never put it past them to trade back.

  12. Mike B.

    Fahn Cooper is an intriguing prospect and a possible steal in a middle or later round. Thoughts on Stanford’s Kyle Murphy? I’ve watched several clips of Murphy and find him to be the kind of OL in which Seattle would take an interest at RT or RG–he has the size (6’7″, 300ish), the athleticism and quickness, and gets to the second level. He’s aggressive, sudden and seems prone to false starts, but he appears to have the edge that the Seahawks like.

    Might as well dump some more thoughts here. Feedback is always appreciated.

    – A few post-round-one CBs that intrigue me: Artie Burns (Miami), Maurice Canady (Virginia), Deiondre Hall (Northern Iowa), Juston Burris (NC St), Harlan Miller (Southeastern Louisiana). Each of these guys is at least 6’0″, and Hall stands out at 6’1″ with 34 5/8″ arms (!!) and great speed and athleticism. He’s unpolished and played for a smaller program, but that kind of upside can’t be ignored. Juston Burris looks like a powerful CB/SS hybrid, and Harlan Miller has tons of potential.

    – Think Kyler Fackrell will go in the first round? I’ve been a fan of his for a while now, and was thinking he could be a guy that the Seahawks might target in the 2nd round.

    – If they draft a big, bruising LG, they’d have to take a look at Sebastian Tretola from Arkansas. I watched four Arkansas games in 2015 and was consistently impressed with him. He often opened big lanes for Alex Collins to dart through and held up well in pass protection. He’s quite athletic for his size.

    – Really like Charles Tapper as someone who could play anywhere on the DL.

    – Another DL to keep an eye on: Javon Hargrave from South Carolina State, who’s incredibly explosive despite his bulk. His legs look like tree trunks, yet appear to be all muscle.

    • Volume12

      Heads up.

      NC St CB Juston Burris only has 31″ arms. And Javon Hargrave has short arms too at 31″ inches. Both fall short of the 32″ inches that Seattle hasn’t budged on.

      • Volume12

        Thst arm length for Dionde Hall is insane! Hopefully he shows a willingness next week to come up and play the run. That’s the one concern of mine with him when watchin his tape.

        Because if he does, with that length and being a former track star, I’m guessing he’s an athletic freak.

        • Trevor

          I am anxious the see Hall at the Senior Bowl. I have thought all year he had the look of a Hawks corner.

      • Mike B.

        Thanks for that info. Are you finding the arm length data on ESPN? Some player pages have that data and some don’t. Harlan Miller’s arms are listed at just over 31.5″, so I just rounded up. No data on Artie Burns’ arms, but he was a track star and has incredible speed to go with great instincts and body control.

        Another notable player I have in my big draft notebook as an all-purpose DB is Justin Simmons from Boston College. He’s just over 6’2″ and has 32″+ arms. Simmons had 2 INTs in the Notre Dame game. He seems like a promising later-round guy.

        • Volume12

          Justin Simmons doesn’t have 32″ arms either.

          It’s from the Shrine Game official measurements.

          Let’s see if those change during combine time.

    • bobbyk

      If you watched those Arkansas games, what did you think of the tackle next to Tretola (Denver Kirkland)? It’s hard to think of them not gaining 5 yards on every play this season running over the left side. Either of those guys are brutes that could potentially play LG for us. Just interested in your thoughts since I never saw him (or focused on him the little I watched flipping channels) for myself.

      One thing I’m wondering about Kyle Murphy… is he not strong enough to play LT or could he be a potential guy almost as good as Michael Roos was? Roos was a stud, granted.

      The clip that Rob showed of Fackrell yesterday, I was amazed at the bust he had when he was “going for it,” as Carroll would say. It was impressive. Makes you wonder how he wouldn’t be considered a first round prospect.

      • bobbyk

        “burst,” not “bust”

      • Rob Staton

        I’m doing a lot of work on Fackrell. Could be a Seahawks option but I’m trying to decipher whether he’s quick-twitch enough.

        • bobbyk

          I saw that, Rob. It was like he was quick-twitch with an un-coachable burst when he was attacking the QB. However, he didn’t look quick-twitch at all when he dropped back into coverage. In fact, it looked kind of slow-twitch at times. That shouldn’t make sense, but that’s kind of what I saw on that link on him.

          • Rob Staton

            I’ve just watched another Utah State game tonight. Same thing really on tape — but man can this guy rush the passer. Incredible burst and technique. Knows when to stunt, rip/swim. Great explosion and finish. Countless splash plays.

            • CharlieTheUnicorn

              This is a guy to really keep tabs on in regards to Seattle. I can see where he may fit in the defense and he has some polish to his game. Good size, fast/speedy…. you know he will have a nice SPARQ as well….. just feels like a perfect fit.

        • Trevor

          I like the Fackrell kid but I just don’t see him as a special enough athlete to warrant a 1st round pick.

      • Mike B.

        The consensus on Kirkland is that he’d likely move back to his original position (guard) in the NFL, which makes sense–he’s likely too big and slow to handle the quicker pass rushers in the NFL. That wouldn’t be a bad thing, as he’s still massive and pretty athletic for his size. He might be asked to lose 15-20 lbs to get a bit more quickness. He and Tretola look pretty similar overall.

  13. Therick05

    Rob and readers, Is a situation Where SEA sign both Okung and Alex Mack possible (cap space talking)? They would use a lot of cap space, so they can be able to resign just Lane, Kearse and Rubin. Irvin, Mebane and Sweezy are gone. Now they got holes at LB, DT and LG (Glow takes JR’s spot and Britt is the New swing tackle).
    So the draft would go:
    1st-DT-Kenny Clark or Andrew Billings
    2nd-LB-Eric Striker
    3rd-OL-Joe Dahl or Connor McGovern for LG
    3rd-RB-Paul Perkins or Kenneth Dixon
    4th-OL depth

    • Rob Staton

      I think Okung + Mack is unlikely. There’s just too much to do elsewhere.

      • dean

        Rob this is something I ‘am thinking if we move on from Lynch after June 1 Seahawks save 9 million. and move on from Jimmy Graham we save 9 million this year and 10 million next year with no dead money . hard choice be the money could be better spent on Okung + Mack for the Wilson led team .and your thoughts on free agent Kelechi Osemele of ravens and Cordy Glenn of the bills

        • Rob Staton

          On Graham — Carroll has made it quite clear they won’t be cutting him. We can move on from that thought. Lynch will be gone.

          Obviously therefore I don’t see them signing Okung and Mack. I like Mack though.

          As for Glenn and Osemele — prefer Glenn but would expect both to be paid more than they’re worth.

          • Thorson

            You are likley correct on Graham, Rob. However, I will say that having treated a fair number of athletes with this injury, it is a lot more difficult to recover from than, say, an ACL. With a ligament injury, your muscles are typically all intact. Durability of the ACL graft can be an issue, as P-Rich has shown us, but explosiveness and athleticism usually come back postoperatively with the extensive physical therapy to which NFL players have access. A patellar tendon rupture is another animal entirely, as one of the main power generators of the knee is torn. It is reattached, of course, but subtle changes in length of the muscle fibers after surgery, or perhaps a stretch injury to the nerve supplying the quads, or some other heretofore unrecognized factor can have a significant negative effect on an athlete’s recovery. It’s not terribly surprising that very few professional athletes have returned to their prior level of functioning after this injury. Also, I am somewhat skeptical of the generally accepted time table for Graham’s recovery. I’ll be (pleasantly) surprised if he is active for the first game of the year. On the other hand, Graham has other attributes that perhaps make his explosiveness less critical – like his height, for instance, that should enable him to remain effective and maybe come back a little sooner than I’m anticipating. Still, the cap savings would have to be tempting to PC/JS given the number of free agents they have to consider.

            • matt

              Interesting insight Thorson. Thanks for sharing. Thinking Graham will spend some time on the PUP list.

            • Trevor

              Interesting insight Thorson. Thanks

            • KyleT

              I’ve also heard it’s totally dependent on the extent of the injury. I had a really good physical therapist I asked this question to and she made it clear they are all not the same. Maybe this optimism is a function of people knowing the injury was not as bad as we fear it could be?

              • Thorson

                Typically when the tendon tears and requires surgery, it is completely torn. It’s a little bit like being pregnant – you either are or you aren’t. So, while I would agree that not all patients are the same, some healing faster than others, the injury is similar. NFL athletes are among the fittest human beings walking the planet. An NFL team doc I trained under described them as “neuromuscular geniuses.” So, if anyone can recover from this devastating injury, one would think Graham could. One the other hand, and not trying to be a pessimist, but tendon tears can be associated with underlying causes such as hypertension, which can weaken the tissues. As a result, if there is an underlying cause (and I have no idea if that is the case with Graham), the other side is vulnerable as well. An example of this is Anthony McCoy and his bilateral Achilles’ tendon ruptures (again I have no knowledge if McCoy has anything else going on health wise).

  14. Hughz

    Just watched the game tape on Whitehair and wasn’t impressed nor disappointed. He looked good in pass protection but not much to look at for run game. I noticed he was never in a 3 pt stance. Is that a concern switching to guard or center?

    • bobbyk

      Cable said in some interview I saw last training camp that that’s one thing that worries and bothers him about college OL coming out. It’s harder to evaluate them because of some of these college offenses.

    • rowdy

      Couldn’t agree more, never in the 3 point stance really ever ran his way and he didn’t seem to attack anyone especially in the run game. He seemed to wait for people to come to him at the second level like he wasn’t really interested

    • Rob Staton

      He’d have to learn — but others have managed it.

      • Volume12

        Could also be a Bill Snyder thing. Maybe he doesn’t like his O-lineman playing in the 3 pt stance? The old adage is, it can tip off the D-lineman.

    • matt

      It was the same thing with Britt at Missouri. Whitehair will have the opportunity in the Senior bowl to show how well he fits at G. Thinking he’ll solidify his standing as a late first-mid 2nd rounder.

  15. CharlieTheUnicorn

    Carson Wentz (QB, North Dakota State)

    This is the player that could turn the draft upside down. I can realistically see him going from #2 until #18 or so….. all the intangibles are there, the measurables…. will he be the next “great one”, who knows…. but he will have a ton of fans in the top 10 I’m sure.

    I keep thinking the 49ers will draft Lynch for some reason. I think Goff and Wentz go before Lynch…. but all 3 ultimately go top 10.

    (The other player that could cause choas draft day, the LB Jaylon Smith from Notre Dame.)

  16. sdcoug

    Rob (or others),

    Any looks at WSU DT Destiny Vaeao (6’4″, ~300)?

    Dahl is the wazzu lineman getting the attention, but I think Vaeao might slip into the mid-rounds and surprise some people. He really came on this year as a disrupter. Quick get-off and fairly stout in the middle. 12 TFLs, 4.5 sacks. With middle penetration so hard to find, curious if there’s anything to like there…

  17. CC

    Great stuff as always Rob!

    Do you think G/C is the biggest need on the O line or is the mock choice of Whitehair based on best value? Or do you think we’ll resign Okung giving us the option to take a LT later in the draft?

    I really hope we address the O line early. I would really like to see us draft a few talented lineman who can hit their ceiling sooner rather than what we have been doing.

    Also, it seems like this is a draft where there is good depth on both sides of the ball.

    • Rob Staton

      A bit of both. The value matches up with Whitehair here. If they bring in a veteran tackle like Loadholt, maybe they go interior in the draft. There’s also nice depth at tackle in the middle rounds which might encourage them to go interior early.

  18. CharlieTheUnicorn

    Assume Okung, Sweezy, Kearse and Irvin are gone in FA.
    I think Seattle might build inside out on the OL… and draft accordingly.. due to value at their first round pick by being able to get a top center in draft.

    Round 1 (1) RYAN KELLY, C
    Round 2 (1) KYLER FACKRELL, OLB
    Round 4 (1) LUTHER MADDY, DT or DEON BUSH, FS
    Round 5 (1) NICK VANNETT, TE
    Round 6 (1) MORGAN BURNS, CB/KR

    • bobbyk

      Based on what Rob showed us of Fackrell and what there is left to see (some USC film from ’13 on youtube if you’re bored), I don’t see a guy with pass rush skills like him falling that far in the second round. Based on the tape, this is a first round pass rusher.

      There are currently guys being mocked like Rob says, A’Shawn Robinson for example, who are going in the first round. However, it seems Robinson is going to be a good, solid pro like Mebane or Rubin. You don’t use first round picks on players like that. You use them on dynamic players who have a chance at greatness. Not ones who you hope are decent or solid in roles that don’t include getting 10+ sacks, stopping great pass rushers, or explosive athletes capable of getting the ball into the end zone with regularity).

      With this draft being the way it is, I can definitely see them going to a dynamic pass rusher in the first because there won’t be any left, whereas if they are looking for a guard… they should be able to find a left guard in the second round.

      Now, if Shon Coleman is still there, all bets are off because left tackle is one of those positions in the NFL (unlike guard and run stuffing defensive tackle) that is about as important as a great pass rusher. I’d imagine they’d simply take their highest rated player (Fackrell, Spence, etc.), whether it’s a left tackle or pass rusher.

      • CharlieTheUnicorn

        I tend to agree with the “Explosive” player argument. WR, DE or LB specifically. I’m not seeing Shon Coleman making it to 26 honestly, so he is off my board as a first round target.

        The guy I would take, if he were available (due to injury/act of god) would be the ND LB Jaylon Smith. I’m pretty confident he will be gone by then as well, but he is the one guy that I would grab no matter who else is on the board at #26 for Seattle. He is a very rare player, worth the risk. He is a potential probowl+ type of player that could really solidify the LB group for a number of years. He would be a HUGE value pick.

        I’ve noticed a considerable group think on here that OT would be the pick in the first round. I find it hard to believe you go with the 5th or 6th rated OT, when a top 2 rated OG and top C may be available with the pick. I honestly have a hard time believing, in my heart of hearts, that Seattle will go OL in the first round.

        I think the sweet spot for OL might be end of second or third rounds…..
        Graham Glasgow (C, Michigan) will gain steam and might elevate his draft stock too high for Seattle’s pick in second round (would he be worth a 1st round pick?) and Rees Odhiambo (OG, Boise ST) will be available (most likely) at the end of the third round.

  19. C-Dog

    One guy I keep reading more and more about is Javon Hargrave, South Carolina State.

    Here’s a few interesting tidbits.

    1. Hargrave was consistently a headache for East offensive linemen during the practice week with first-step quickness that created backfield disruption. Hargrave is a primarily 3-tech defensive tackle prospect for a 4-3 defense, and made an early impression on NFL Media analyst Mike Mayock. Analyst Daniel Jeremiah, in fact, found Hargrave to be the best player at the entire event. Following practices, Hargrave was a popular introduction for NFL scouts on hand. He once had six sacks in a single college game and is shaping up to be an attractive draft sleeper who could surprise at next month’s NFL Scouting Combine. – Chase Goodbread,

    2. A college scouting director with a track record of identifying quality defensive tackles raved about Hargrave, noting “he made himself some money here.” Another area scout was a little more reserved, but admitted being pleasantly surprised. “He’s got short arms and level of competition is a question, but he’s powerful,” the area scout said. “He has held his own here. He has some natural pass rushing ability. He jumped out on tape against Clemson.”

    Interestingly, the same scout identified him as the type of defensive tackle that Atlanta Falcons coach Dan Quinn likes to work with. Lo and behold, the Falcons were one of the teams that spent time talking to Hargrave. – Charles Robinson, Yahoo Sports.

    3. South Carolina State defensive tackle Javon Hargrave has been the best player here. He has an excellent combination of quickness and power. He dominated the one-on-one drills. – Daniel Jeremiah

    Only comment that concerns me is “short arms,” but 6 sacks in a college game, and the fact DQ is talking to him definitely has my attention.


    • bobbyk

      Interesting. If you’re “jumping out on tape” against Clemson, then I don’t care about being from a small school. One thing that bothers me is how some guys get docked for dominating at a small school, even if they go to these events and stand toe-to-toe with the big boys of DI football. It’s almost as if some GMs (Ruskell would have been a prime example) would rather you play average football in the SEC as opposed to dominate at a less prestigious school. Doesn’t make sense. Guess that’s part of the reason Ruskell is on the outside looking in these days.

      • C-Dog

        Yeah, leave no stone unturned. For the small school kids, I really like Justin Zimmer who’s highlight tape is ridiculous. Looking at one tape on Hargrave, you could definitely see a nice swim, and good quickness, but not near the crazy explosiveness Zimmer’s tape showed. It’s a shame Zimmer isn’t there.

      • CharlieTheUnicorn

        Ruskell was the king of drafting guys from Saginaw Valley State… just saying πŸ™‚

        • bobbyk

          In five years as Seahawks GM – he never once drafted a small school prospect. It was always players from teams that competed in major conferences.

        • C-Dog

          Actually, Saginaw Valley St defensive lineman Lamar King was pre-Ruskell. The was GM/HC Mike Holmgren’s bold first move. I think then a couple years later, after drafting Jeremy Stevens, Mr Allen said to GM/HC, ‘you know, Mike, I think we really just need to you focus in on coaching.” But Ruskell definitely brought in his own hot mess. That said, I really hope PC/JS stick around another 5 more years, at least.

        • CharlieTheUnicorn

          I just went back and found an article listing all the Tim Ruskell picks….. I wish I hadn’t now.

          • C-Dog

            Lofa, LeRoy hill, Mebane, Red Bryant, and Unger were good picks. John Carlson was decent. Rob Simms became a decent guard for the Lions. Darryl Tapp was okay. His first round picks were pretty disastrous, Lawrence Jackson, Kelly Jennings, Chris Spencer, Aaron Curry. Loved to pick small corners, loved to draft fullbacks. I think had a decent eye for LBs, and that was about it. David Greene was a mammoth waste of a 3rd round pick.

            One of the weirdest things 12s gravitated to was QB Mike Teel.

            • CharlieTheUnicorn

              The Curry pick was an A at draft time, little did anyone know the whole first round was mostly a bust for every pick regardless of team. That still has to be one of the worst drafts ever….

              As for the picks, even a blind squirrel finds a nut once in awhile.

      • C-Dog

        Just saw a snippet of film against Clemson. He swims and bulls their center practically into the lap of the QB. In that play you see the quickness and power Jeremiah refers to.

    • KyleT

      Hargraves got some really good tape. I only knock him for the small school competition. Small arms are less of an issue inside. What were Aaron Donald’s arms? Would be happy with him at 3-tech or nickel 1-tech. The other guy I like is Chris Jones. One of the best run stoppers and has pass rush upside

      • Volume12

        When Seattle takes a D-lineman or CB with less than 32″ arms, someone let me know. Dan Quinn isn’t PC or JS. He liked Grady Jarret who had short, stubby arms. Seattle wants length.

        We went over this last year.

        IIRC, Aaron Donald had 32″ arms.

        • RealRhino2

          Donald was 32-5/8″ arms.

        • C-Dog

          Yeah, that’s kind of why I hadn’t really been considering him that much, but when I started looking at the production more, and reading the raves, I started looking more.

          Also, given DQ’s forte is DL, I gotta be honest and say I might trust what he evaluates a bit more than PC/JS, albeit it’s probably moot because he is no longer part of this team.

          But going back to the arm length, I noticed that while Luther Maddy (a prospect we probably both like) has longer arms over Hargrave, his wingspan is shorter. Maddy 33 1/2 arms, 76 3/4 wingspan. Hargrave 31 1/8 arms, 77 1/2 wingspan. Is this this simply because Hargrave is broader in the shoulders? Is wingspan something they take into account?

          • Volume12

            Broader in the shoulders and his hands may be bigger, giving him longer fingers.

            They do take wingspan into account. Absolutely, but we’ve seen it every year where they pass on guys with 31 1/4″ or 31.5′ inch arms.

            • Steele

              I think the arm length litmus test is too rigid. They have passed up a lot of talent, allowing them to go to rival teams. I think they should put it aside. Or at least be flexible when it is just an inch or so. If a player can ball out, an inch shouldn’t stand in the way.

              • C-Dog

                Tough to argue that.

                • C-Dog

                  against that, that is.

            • C-Dog

              I think the shortest arms on a DT they drafted with Jesse Williams who had 32 and some considered that t-rex-y. Howard, Hill, and Scruggs were long arms, no question. Makes me think Johnson, Shittu and Maddy are the ones to really watch for Seattle.

              As a Hawks fan Maddy vs Glasgow should really be the battle to watch for both players.

  20. Brandon

    If Shon Coleman and Eli Apple are both picked before our #26 (which is a good possibility), what are thoughts on trading down and stashing more picks?

    I’m not an expert on pick value, but PC and JS have done this before and it could leave us with another 2nd and 4th round pick. That way we can use that early 2nd rounder to pick up an OL (Whitehair/Ifedi) or Pass Rusher/Linebacker (Fackrell) and then the later 2nd rounder to get the position we didn’t choose earlier (Ex: OL – Joshua Garnett, DL – Kevin Dodd/Noah Spence).

    We would also have two picks in the 3rd round and two in the 4th round. Those could be where we get another O line (Gasglow/Cooper/McGovern), a receiver (Braxton Miller anyone?), a DL, and a third down RB.

    • Trevor

      I would be all for that if those 2 are off the board.

    • matt

      There’s a good possibility that we trade out of day 1. We could use the extra capital to trade back up in the third round getting 3 picks in the 40-80 range plus the 3rd round comp or just make the picks.

    • Rob Staton

      It’s an option… but I’m wary of a Joel Bitonio scenario.

      • matt

        Understandable. Do you rate Whitehair as high as Bitonio?

        • Rob Staton


  21. Trevor

    Kearse was quoted as saying no hometown discount. I think he is gong to be shocked with what is value is on the open market. I bet his max value is 2-2.5 mil per on a 3 yr deal. I know I am in the minority but i would not pay a dime over 2 mil per /yr for a 3rd WR. If P Rich can stay healthy he could even be 4th on the depth chart.

    Russ seems to like him and he is a good team mate so I would like him back but on a 3r/ $6mil deal max and I don’t think a hometown discount will be required.

    • CC

      Kearse will likely be surprised if he thinks he’s going to make $4-5m a year, He’s solid, but doesn’t do anything special to put himself in that price range. Tate had the advantage of establishing himself as a dual threat and had speed. I could see going up to $3m maybe $3.5m but not much higher. I’m not sure PRich is the answer though – he can’t stay healthy and his twiggy body has let him down in college and now in the pros. Kevin Smith and or Kasen could probably take over for Kearse if he leaves. Kasen has to be getting completely healthy and he’s a heck of a WR.

      If Kearse leaves, best of luck to him.

    • CharlieTheUnicorn

      He will find someone to pay him. He is clutch in big games. The recent Carolina game was a perfect example. Many teams in the NFL can barely field 3 decent WRs…. his market is in the 3.5-5M/yr range most likely. I don’t begrudge him for wanting to make good money… this might be his only “big deal” of his NFL career.

    • CHawk Talker Eric

      This ignores the WR FA market in which he will compete for offers. Have you seen the list of FA WRs available in 2016? It’s thin to say the least. CHI won’t let Alshon Jeffrey get away, so that leaves the likes of 35 yo Anquan Boldin and 34 yo Malcolm Floyd. I wouldn’t want either over Kearse at any price. There’s always Percy Harvin. Sorry couldn’t resist the joke. But seriously, there’s Brian Quick or Mohamed Sanu or Darrius Heyward-Bey or Ruben Randle. I’d take Kearse over any of them.

      I wouldn’t be the least bit surprised if he signs a deal worth $4mm apy.

      • matt

        Chawk- You beat me to it. It Jeffery stays in Chicago, and he likely will, Kearse is the top FA WR on the market. It’ll be interesting to see what kind of money he gets. $4-5mil/year seems very likely.

        • Trevor

          If he can get 5 mil APY I think you shake his hand and wish him the best. I would be shocked if he got that kind of money but if a team is desperate then perhaps. I know I hope we don’t pay him anywhere near that.

          • bobbyk

            If you think about it, part of the reason for Kearse having such a great game against Carolina was the fact that the Panthers have lost 2 of their best 3 CBs in the past month. Who are they going to cover Baldwin and Lockett with? Their best CBs. What does that leave for Kearse to be covered by? Granted, that TD catch over Norman’s tip on that one was awesome.

            Kearse comes up big in big games. No doubt. The catch against Williams and the Packers in the NFC Championship Game last year was awesome. Anyone remember all of the Kearse drops in the first half, in which some led directly to Packer INTs? I do.

            He’s not close to a $5 million WR, imo. I don’t see him being better than Richardson next year either.

            I have a problem with the Richardson is “always” injured people, too. He tore his ACL last Jan. No way he’s ready for the start of this year. When he comes back, he hurt his hammy. He’s healthy. He could have played these past weeks. The Seahawks could have easily kept him on the active roster until he was healthy. Putting him on IR was stupid, imo, when you keep dead weight on the active roster like Sokoli. Richardson has been healthy for quite some time. It’s not his fault the Seahawks didn’t want to keep him inactive for a few weeks.

            I think Richardson explodes next year in terms of making a regular season difference more than Kearse ever dreamed of in weeks 1-16.

            • bobbyk

              Before anyone says Sokoli wasn’t injured to be put on IR… teams do that all the time (put non-hurt guys on IR to stash them from other teams). You can’t tell me they couldn’t have faked a shoulder injury with him.

              • CHawk Talker Eric

                I have a vague recollection of PC saying they wanted Sokoli around the team all season to integrate and acclimate him to the locker room.

            • Steve Nelsen

              I hope Richardson can stay healthy next season and show something. But, given his lack of size, and his lack of playing time in the past two seasons due to injury, I think it is probably closer to wishful thinking than analysis to project “an explosion” for Richardson next year.

              I think Lockett gave Seattle everything they hoped for from Richardson (and more). If they lose Kearse, they probably add another WR in the draft with a bit more size and then throw open the #3 spot for competition. The ability to run block is a key to starting for Seattle at WR and that is an unknown for Richardson.

              • matt

                This is a make or break year for Richardson. Assuming he’s healthy enough to be able to work out with Wilson and the rest of the WR core this offseason. That would be huge in his and Lockett’s development to build timing and trust with Wilson. Holding out hope PR can stay healthy for 2016.

                • Steele

                  Richardson, Tharold Simon. Sorry but I’m getting tired of expecting these constantly injured guys to be starters, much less star starters.

          • matt

            “If he can get 5 mil APY I think you shake his hand and wish him the best.”

            Absolutely. That would be more than he’s worth to our team. Cleveland handed Dwayne Bowe $8 mil apy last FA period. Needless to say they could still use WR help…desperately. Cut Bowe-save $3.4 mil-give Kearse $5+m apy. That would be a nice upgrade at a low cost for Cleveland. Doubt they’re smart enough to do it though. haha There’s a few other teams with ample cap space that could use a proven WR. SF,Tenn, SD, LA. It only takes one. Kearse has improved every year and Golden set a fine precedent for Hawks WR’s moving onward. It’s possible I’m inflating Kearse’s value, we shall see.

            • Tien

              I like Kearse alot but I just don’t see him as a #1 or #2 WR on any team. He really struggled when it was just him and Baldwin as our two top WRs and I think if he has to go up against a team’s top two CBs each week, he won’t be nearly as productive. IMO, Tate was a much better player. If Kearse gets $5 mil/yr from another team, good luck to him and no hard feelings at all. In regards to Richardson, if he can stay healthy all year, I’m really excited about his potential. He doesn’t have the size of Kearse but damn, he’s so fast that it’ll put a lot of pressure on opposing defenses if they have to account for both him and Lockett blazing down the field!

      • RealRhino2

        That ignores the huge player pool in the draft, though. I know Kearse is more proven, but if I’m a GM and Kearse is just the best of a really bad bunch, I turn my attention to the draft, where I can find a dozen guys around 6-2, 200 in the 4th round or later that could turn into Kearse or better.

        • matt

          Fair point. This WR class looks to be a bit thinner so far, but still well stocked. Beyond Amari Cooper, Lockett and Stephon Diggs who really produced at WR from last years draft? DGB showed some promise. Top guys White, Perryman, Parker, Smith did nothing or next to it. Spending an early pick at WR guarantees little. With so many college teams running the spread WR’s lack the skills to run a full route tree coming in. This is a win now league. Many GM’s and HC’s don’t have the luxury to develop late round talent.

          • Volume12

            DeVante Parker actually came on strong towards the end of the season and was quite impressive.

            JJ Nelson for Arizona was good, Jacksonville’s Rashad Greene was ok, Ty Montgomery was good before his injury, Nelson Agholor had flashes.

            • matt

              You’re right Parker ended the season on a high note. He could take a big leap forward next year.

              If you add the stats of Nelson+Greene+Agholor=53 rec. 675 yards 5 tds
              Kearse-49 rec. 685 yards 5 tds

    • EranUngar

      I was actually preparing to write the opposite opinion when i reached your comment. I have a lot of respect to the receiver that holds the Seahawks’ record for playoff TDs (Kearse).

      I was hoping Kearse would be signed before he actually reaches FA. His role within the offense is very important. He is playing WR2 even if he is the 3rd best receiver overall. He may get m ore than 4M in FA, it only takes one team with a need and cap space. Without him, we have zero size to threaten with a challenged deep ball. He may not make many of those shots but he forces the defense to play them.

      IMO, if we fail to secure Kearse, the need for WR in the draft jumped into the top 2 round.

      As for Graham – Of-course PC was all excited and 100% positive about having him back, they have nothing to lose by being all in behind him at this point. However, once we get closer to opening day they will need to make a final call. Graham has no guarantied money on his 19M contract for the next 2 years. His injury is one of the worst you can get and his timely and full recovery is questionable. If he is not fully recovered and at peak form to start the season, he becomes very expensive for 1.5 seasons. Maybe too expensive when you add possible alternative use for that huge cap hit. In all honesty, if he is not 100% ready for day one of the season and there are still questions regarding his full return to past form, they can’t roll the dice on it.

      Lane – He may not be on the top of the extension list candidates but i fully agree that he may be the most crucial for day one of 2016.

      • red

        there will be some cap cut at WR vikings are not going to pay Wallace and Garcon might get cut as well just off the top of my head. But for the most part Kearse is like 3 year 10-12 mil type of deal with very little dead money in year 3.

      • Rob Staton

        Why would they wait that long and then cut Graham though?

        There’s no benefit to an extra $9m in salary by training camp. Free agency is long over.

        The time to talk about Graham’s contract is this time next year — PC has made that pretty clear.

        • Trevor

          Agree completely Rob if the recovery is on track I think they view Graham as a huge part of the offense. Only way he gets cut is if he can’t recover from injury and they won’t know that till it is closer to training camp after free agency.

        • EranUngar


          If they get into training camp and the outlook is that Graham is not ready to start the season and it would take longer to find out how well he recovered, it will put the seahawks in a position that the best possible outcome is to actually have a productive Graham for 12M a year (i.e. 19M for 1.5 years).

          The other alternatives are spending 9M to find out he is not back to top form or worse.

          Does it not make sense in such a case to cut it before the season and free 19M from the 2016-2017 cap to be used in whatever way they see fit.

          • Rob Staton

            No — because they can save $10m if he doesn’t recover this time next year. And how do you know he wouldn’t be back to full power for the playoffs for example? $10m is enough of a saving if they have to. Pete Carroll has been quite firm on this — not sure why we keep coming back to it.

            EDIT — John Schneider just confirmed he’ll definitely be back next year on ESPN 710.

            • Trevor

              Finally lets put the cut Graham talk to rest. JS just did. We all saw the mid season transition to a more pass focused offense. Graham would have thrived in that system and will be a huge part of the 2016 Hawks if healthy.

            • EranUngar

              I may have been unclear. I do think that the Seahawks are hoping to get JFG back healthy enough to play this year. It is the outcome they would like to happen and JS and PC are very clear about it.

              However, Grahams injury is almost the worse sports injury that is not an immediate end to a players career. It is worse than ACL tear, broken leg etc. You know it better than i do. There is no guarantee Graham gets back to his old self, or does it in time to play this year.

              Since the Seahawks do not need to commit one way or another they are doing everything they can to get him back. By the time the 2016 season is about to start they will need to evaluate his progress and make the call.

              If Graham is healthy enough to play or the doctors are confident he should be back to full form in time to play a meaningful part in the 2016 season they will gladly keep him.

              If his recovery does not look certain and he is about to miss most if not all of the 2016 season – they will be irresponsible to pay a 9M cap charge on the hope he may play in the playoffs or to preserve the rights to have his expensive services in 2017.

              It makes no economic sense.

              If I was in their shoes i’d say and do exactly what they are saying or doing right now and I would still make the hard call if his recovery process is not cleared by the doctors by the time the season starts.

              I would love to have Graham, i think he could a tremendous asset for RW and the Seahawks offense if he makes a complete recovery. If he doesn’t, keeping him for another year just to see if he can play at 2017 is throwing good money after bad money.

              • CHawk Talker Eric

                @scohenPI: Schneider tells @SportsRadioKJR he doesn’t envision scenario where Jimmy Graham’s not on the roster. Calls trade a “slam dunk deal for us.”

              • Rob Staton

                There are so many great things to discuss at the moment. Do people really want to speculate on Graham’s status months down the line?

      • Steele

        If Kearse is the number one deep threat with size, then they are sorely lacking in deep threats with size, and should look into finding a couple who are more talented than Kearse. Who is not worth as much as he thinks on the open market, but invaluable to Russell Wilson.

        Unbold prediction is that Kearse goes nowhere, continues to play out of ideal role.

  22. Kelly

    Rob. Think anyway Seattle perhaps resigns only Jeremy Lane and then goes after Wilkerson in FA to shore up the Interior Pass Rush??

    • Rob Staton

      It’s a nice thought but with Wilkerson likely to command $10-12m APY, I think he will be too expensive.

      • LantermanC

        Which is why cutting JG might be that much more important. 2/19, not guaranteed, with his injury, I’m not sure he’d get that on the open market. Sure he could be back for half a season, but he probably won’t be 100%. If $10M saved on JG means Wilkerson, or Wisnewski + Irvin + Lane, it’s something to consider.

        • C-Dog

          1. JS says he is not cutting JG.

          2. Wilkerson is a great player, love Seattle making a big DL splash like that, but he’s just now coming off a very recent broken leg. So cut one injured impact player for another injured impact player? If Seattle looks for a FA DT with some pass rush, why not just court Jaye Howard at less the cost, and pair him with Tuba or Mebane? With Wilk, you probably can’t afford either Tuba and Bane, if you’re looking to retain as many players as you can.

          • Steele

            When healthy, Wilkerson is a matchup nightmare, sometimes unstoppable. He broke his fibula, which is not a weight bearing bone. He is an interior lineman, so not a one for one comparison to the JFG situation. Post-injury, I would still take Wilkerson over anyone on the roster right now.

            He will be asking for a double digit M figure, as Rob says, so the idea is almost as unlikely as the N. Suh fantasies we had last offseason.

        • Rob Staton

          Both Schneider and Carroll have ruled it out.

      • Ukhawk

        Not much different than Lynch or Okung then

  23. Volume12

    There’s another All-Star/bowl game this weekend? Nice. Collegiate Bowl. Coached by Mike Martz and Mike Holmgren.

    CHAWK, what’s your take on UCLA WR Devin Fuller? I know we both like Jordan Payton, he might be the closest thing to Kearse in this draft, but Fuller?

    • CHawk Talker Eric

      If Payton is Kearse, Fuller is ADB. As in pre-2015 ADB. And I mean that as much about their relative roles on offense as I do their WR geshtalt. That is to say Fuller is a good athlete, savvy route runner, reliable catcher, well suited to the slot. He made some nice catches this year, some on 3rd downs that kept drives alive. He also returned punts, some kickoffs too.

      He’s a decent UDFA prospect with a chance to make a roster, but probably not a good fit for SEA.

      • Volume12

        Good to know.

        I like the WRs playing in the Collegiate Bowl tommorow. One of them could be a Seahawk. Some very appealing UDFA types, and some guys that have a shot to climb into the late part of day 3.

        • CHawk Talker Eric

          Been watching the practices on ESPNU this week. A bit nostalgic with Mike Holmgren coaching.

          • Volume12

            Anyone standing out?

            • CHawk Talker Eric

              Didn’t see enough of the actual drills to get a sense, but I like the look of OT Pearce Slater.

              • Volume12

                Big ol’ LA boy. Similar to James Carpenter. I like him myself. His teammate Darrell Greene ain’t bad either, but more of an UDFA type.

  24. Ed

    If the Hawks don’t resign anybody and cut Lynch, that would give them around $34 million in cap space. If they decide to sign Shead and Rubin, that’s probably only $8 million. With $26 million left, they should still have room for Wilkerson $10 million. He would be such a bonus on the line. Then the draft is used to improve the OL with no projects please.

    1st Whitehair
    2nd Striker
    3rd Day
    3rd Haeg/Dahl

    OL Gilliam/Whitehair/Lewis/Glowinski/Haeg
    DL Bennett/Avril/Rubin/Wilkerson/Day

    • Rob Staton

      Shead is an ERFA so I would expect he and Rubin would cost a lot less than $8m combined.

      They’d also need to try and keep several other UFA’s. The roster will be obliterated if they only re-sign those two and spend $10m on Wilkerson. It’s highly unlikely they add such another expensive outside FA — especially with Carroll remarking they want to keep the group together.

      • Ed

        I know, even in an earlier post, I think they want all those comp picks, because they can be traded in 2017. So it’s about keeping what you want, and getting young. Just no converts. Draft oline with experience.

        1st Whitehair/Conklin/Decker/Coleman
        2nd Striker/Spence/Killebrew
        3rd Allen/Turek
        3rd Miller

      • KyleT

        We could totally afford Wilkerson, sign Lane and an OL FA as well as Bane or Rubin. I’ve done the numbers and it’s totally doable.

    • Steve Nelsen


      The $28 million current cap space number is a bit inflated because Seattle has only 31-32 players on contract. By the time you add in even a modest amount for those 20 players, you see the challenge facing John Schneider. And there is still the issue of a Baldwin extension and a Bennet restructure although neither of those would necessarily increase next year’s cap hit.

      Basically we have 7 starters that are UFA and we can keep 3 if we cut Lynch: Lane, Mebane, Rubin, Irvin. Kearse, Okung, Sweezy. Pick 3

      If we add another modest veteran FA like Loadholt or a pass rusher, then we can keep 2. There is no room for a top $ free agent like Wilkerson this year.

      • Rob Staton

        I think they can keep Lane, Mebane, Rubin and Kearse — Lane might be the tricky one. Loadholt might be vet minimum given the time he’s missed.

        • Ed

          Lane and Rubin, yes.
          I think Mebane will be asking too much and can probably get in Jax/Atl.
          Sounds like Kearse is looking for the money. Maybe Atl to take over for White as the #2 to Jones.

          Lane/Rubin/Tukuafu are the big ones for me.
          Shead/Moody/Michael/Burley/Sesay/Pinkins/Lewis would be nice to keep at decent money.

          • Volume12

            Tukuafu, really?

            Can’t see him as a priority.

            • Volume12

              Don’t Pinkins and Seisay have 2 years left on their deals?

              Okung or Sweezy, Irvin, Kearse, ‘Bane, Rubin. For me at least.

              Then, Shead, Michael, Lewis, Burley.

              • C-Dog

                I think they can tender Pinkins, Seisay, Lewis, and Michael. I would suspect all those players back.

                • Volume12

                  If Pinkns and Seisay have 2 years left on their deals, why would they tender them?

                  Weren’t they both part of the 2014 draft?

                  • C-Dog

                    I might be wrong on Seisay, was he on a UDFA deal from Detroit? I think because the cut Pinkins and then brought him back on the practice squad, doesn’t that make him a restricted free agent like Michael?

            • Ed

              Yes. I like him as FB more than Coleman and he can do spot duty on DL.

      • SeventiesHawksFan

        You echo my thoughts exactly, Steve. I think they will prioritize Rubin and Lane.

        Then Mebane if they can get him for around $3 million on a 2 year deal. He may get richer offers from Atlanta or Jacksonville, in which case he may be gone as well.

        I don’t think they will prioritize Kearse over signing a veteran center. Or extending Baldwin. I think we can get a Baldwin extension and a FA addition to the line. I don’t think you can do both Bakdwin, a FA lineman and Kearse. There are multiple existing players on the roster who can fill his role for under $1 million, and Jimmy Graham being back will mean that Kearse’s targets are reduced. Kearse has had a great run with us. But he is more a product of a system that can reproduce what he does with other players who are up and coming.

        I also don’t think they will be able to pay Irvin either. Frank Clark can replace his third down rushing role. They really need a first and second down linebacker to adequately replace Irvin. They have the luxury of moving KJ back to strong side LB if what falls to them is more of a weak side LB in the draft. He’s not impossible to replace with a combination of players. It’s just unlikely that we’ll find one player who can do all of the things Irvin does.

  25. Ross

    Of course, Pittsburgh drafts one spot in front of us. They always draft the guys I like so given that I love Kendall Fuller at CB, it makes total sense that Pitt takes him. If we lose Lane, that’s the guy I want. Speaking of Lane, 2 years ago I thought he was really just meh on coverage and more of a ST standout. He has really turned a corner (no pun intended). His improvement really warrants Seattle stepping to keep him (within reason, of course).

    Go Hawks

    • sdcoug

      It’s funny you say that. Years ago (2008) I really really really wanted Reshard Mendenhall and those jerks took him 2 spots before our pick. We traded back for….Lawrence Jackson. Sigh. Thanks Ruskell

      • CharlieTheUnicorn

        The Packers always seem to draft the later round WRs I like…. Janis, Abberderis to name a few lately.

  26. Fred Stark

    Hey thanks for asking; Seattle Seahawks first round pick will be a wide receiver. Just wait and see.

  27. Steve Nelsen


    How likely do you think it is that Seattle takes a linebacker in Round 1? The offensive line play in 2015 has made improvement for that group an obvious priority. But, if Irvin leaves, then I think a replacement for him becomes perhaps the biggest need given the lack of any clear starter on the roster.

    • Rob Staton

      Very possible. Good depth on the OL overall.

    • Attyla the Hawk

      It really does seem like a lot of really good 2nd/3rd round options should be available at the OL position (interior).

      Honestly, I’d be left to wonder if it comes down to it, we don’t prioritize Irvin over Sweezy amongst the prime UFA players we have. There isn’t a very good approximation for Irvin at SAM in the early going. Irvin is pretty unique in terms of his athletic ability. And if we’re talking about continuity on the line, then you’d have to include the same in the defense.

      Irvin is a much more productive 4th year vet than Sweezy. And if we think that unique athleticism is important to Seattle — then I think the difference between Irvin’s possible replacement and Sweezy’s is pretty pronounced.

      While I don’t think one game tells us anything about Glowinski, the reality is Glow will be in his second year in our system. The transition from Sweezy to Glow should be significantly easier than from Irvin to a rookie.

      How the UFA period shakes out for us will tell us a lot about where they are going draft wise and what they think of the ability of the depth currently on the roster is to ascend to starter status. Personally, I think Seattle will push very hard to keep Irvin even at the expense of other UFAs we have.

  28. Austin Slater

    Rob great stuff and we are spoiled as Seahawks fans for this site.

    Off topic but I can’t see Seattle signing Kearse for 3-4 million. There is a decent chance he’s the #4 next year if Richardson is healthy. He was out targeting him his rookie year towards the end and is obviously more talented. It doesn’t make sense to pay Kearse 3-4 million to be your #4 when you have holes elsewhere. It seems like a lot to pay as insurance for Richardson. I would think they would consider Williams, Smith and possibly a draft pick as insurance for Richardson as its much cheaper. Am I crazy?

    • Rob Staton

      Certainly viable, Austin.

    • Jarhead

      Has Richardson proven that he can be valuable on the field even when healthy? Quite frankly I think Richardson is a sunk cost, and Seattle will be hoping that he can make even one or to of the amazing game clinching catches that Kearse makes every year. You have it backwards, Richardson is the plan B in Kearse can not be resigned. To state that Richardson is obviously more talented is a huge leap, and mostly inaccurate. He is fast. That’s it. But that speed hasn’t translated a lick on the field when he actually manages to suit up that is. I personally think that Lockett isthe player they hoped Richardson would be. Seattle doesn’t have another Kearse just waiting in the wings.

    • Attyla the Hawk

      Whether or not you think Kearse is a #4, I keep circling back to the reality that Kearse still offers us unique value at what he does well. The kinds of catches and TDs he produces are valuable. Really, Seattle still doesn’t have a similar style of WR on the roster to replace Kearse’s ability.

  29. Volume12

    Over at BR, they have us going Cody Whitehair in round 1 and Tyler Boyd in round 2.

    Pass on Boyd. We got bigger needs than a WR. Ecspecially when a team like ours has been so succesful at plugging in late round or UDFAs at that position.

    • Rob Staton

      And they have Jerald Hawkins in the first round. Yuck.

      • Volume12


        I don’t get the appeal. He looks like a late day 3 guy to me. I think he’s gonna be this year’s O-lineman that free falls.

        Obviously you’ve watched a ton Auburn’s Shon Coleman, did you notice his teammate Avery Young at all?

    • Mike B.

      Have you checked out the two-round Draft Breakdown mock? They have Shon Coleman going to Seattle at 26 and Sterling Shephard at 55. I’m a huge fan of Shephard, but I doubt they’ll take a WR that early. Shepard is a very Baldwinesque receiver, maybe a bit stronger and more polished than Doug was at that age. As much as I’d like to have Shepard on the Seahawks, I don’t see a scenario in which they’d take him, unless he were available in late round 3.

      • Dylan

        I would take that draft in a heartbeat though. Get that wr maybe not the most urgent need but Im just kind of the mind that if you can get a great player at your pick, you just go ahead and take him.

  30. Morgan

    On a non-Seahawk mock note, I’m not sure TB would take a LB first, what with the emergence of Kwon Alexander and a not-insignificant monetary investment in Bruce Carter. They really should be thinking CB, that position is just a black hole.

    As far as Seattle goes, I want to see a scenario where we land Eric Striker. We would be set for soundbites for YEARS. Best talker in the draft!

  31. bigDhawk

    The Seahawks take the technically gifted, athletic Whitehair and plug him in at either left guard or center.

    Is Whitehair more technically gifted and athletic than Josh Garnett? If we are going to draft someone who will ultimately play an interior OL position, why not go ahead and draft the best college player at that spot already? If Whitehair is a first round G/C, Garnett certainly is.

    • Rob Staton

      Found Garnett to be a bit hit and miss personally. Will watch more.

    • CharlieTheUnicorn

      I’m more in favor of going with a guy like RYAN KELLY at center, if you are going for OL late first round.

      • Steele

        Rob and everyone, opinions on G/T Sebastian Tretola and OG Joshua Garnett would be useful. We like Shon Coleman and Whitehair, but these guys deserve looks.

        • Volume12

          I like Garnett. Not completely sold on him, but he’s one of the better G’s.

          Tretola and Denver Kirkland…pass. Overrated. Kirkland is big, slow, and unathletic. No versatility in Tretola. I think all of the Arkansas O-lineman are maxed out and good college players.

  32. red

    I was checking out over the cap twitter feed, he seems to think the jets might cut Breno to free up some cap space. Would be interesting to see what kind of market he has going forward maybe a fall back position.

  33. rowdy

    Anyone have game tape (not just highlights) of UMass wr t.sharpe? said he looks great this week saying he’s big strong and athletic and a precise route runner.

    • Old but Slow

      Draft breakdown has 3 clips. Here’e one against ND:

      They list him as 6’2 and 188. They throw the ball a lot, and he looks very good.

      • CHawk Talker Eric

        He has really small hands. Measured at 7.75″

        • rowdy

          Ouch, that hurts but so did lockett

          • CharlieTheUnicorn

            But not THAT small

        • Volume12

          It’s never been proven that small hands are a hindrance at the WR position. Having said that, those hands are tiny.

          It could drop him in the draft.

      • rowdy

        Thanks man, reminds me of a poor man’s Aguilar. Doesn’t look special but solid

  34. CharlieTheUnicorn

    I read somewhere ( that there are upwards of 120 underclassman in the 2016 draft. If this is true, that would be the highest number ever. Talk about UDRFA being very important for long term team building… there will be plenty of very intriguing players to be had after the 7 round draft is completed.

    So if your fav guy doesn’t get picked, no fear, he might still end up on the Hawks. πŸ™‚

  35. KyleT

    My offseason scenario:

    Assuming we have the full compliment of 53 on the roster. And if the cap rises to 154m and Assuming Lynch walks, that frees up 7m and Williams 4m for a total of 30m. About 24m could be spent on free agents. I would spend about 6m on the O-line to bring back Okung or a FA LG like Boone or the Vikings guy, 12m on D-line to resign Bane or Rubin and Wilkerson and 6m on CB (sign Lane).

    While 6m may be low, this would just be the back loaded heavy deal that is typical, and more then enough to pay for the first year of somebody who will make 8m APY. Same with Wilkerson getting 9m in the first year of a longer higher APY contract. Lane makes 6m on a 1 or 2 year deal and Bane or Rubin comes back for 3m

    My first 4 picks in the draft become: Coleman / Whitehair, Chris Jones and Striker, Drafted Center

    The Starting OL then looks like this

    Gilliam, FA LG, Lewis/Drafted Center, Glow, Coleman

    Starting DL looks like this:

    Avril, Wilkerson, Mebane, Bennett

    Anyone want to mess with us in the trenches?

    • Ukhawk

      Id love it if we could afford it. Genuinely would like to spend cash on Wilkerson & draft Coleman than resigning both Irvin and and Okung

      • Volume12

        JS said today on 710 ESPN Seattle and Spokane that the feeling is Lynch will retire, but if he doesn’t, he said they’d want him back and would have to move some things around. Said FA is a very fluid situation for them.

        • Volume12

          Oops. It’s 950 in Seattle, but 710 ESPN here.

          • Volume12

            To clarify: “For us it’s a very fluid puzzle…if he were to come back and wanted to play, sure we would have to adjust some things.”

            If he were to come back? That stands out to me.

            Also said Rawls is the guy, they want C-mike back, or would like to get something done with him, and will add another back.

            Want to get the Lynch situation figured out by combine time.

  36. EranUngar

    The current cap calculation again:

    Per Sportac we currently have 125M in contracts for 38 players (including players signed this week like Sims, Shirley etc.). We also carry around 3M dead money.

    Assuming a total cap of 154M and a post June 1 release for Lynch (9M cap gain) – the starting number for free cap space is 154+9-3-125=35M for 37 players.

    We will need 16 more players to make the 53 men roster and each will cost at least the league minimum of 450K so that number drops to around 27M.

    We’ll need to pay the top draft pics approx 2M more than the min and we will need to keep at least 3M for IR replacements etc. so we are down to 22M.

    Signing RFA (Lewis and Shead) will cost another 3M over the minimum so it leaves us with 19M.

    Assuming that whatever contracts we sign will average 75% of the APY as first year cap hit (signing bonus / moderate back loading) it would give us a budget of up to 25M APY signing budget (plus 0.5M per player).

    That number can sign almost all of our high priority players if we chose to do it. (Okung 8M + Sweezy 4M + Kearse 4M + Lane 6M + Irvine 6M = 28M)

    I am not saying they will all buy into the above numbers or that it is the best alternative for the team. I am just saying that it might be possible to do it.

    • Volume12

      They’ll let at least 2 guys walk, probably 3. 2017 you can trae comp picks, and that’s gonna weigh heavily on JS’s mind.

      They got 7 starters about to be UFAs. I think they’ll keep Sweezy, Kearse, Irvin, Rubin, and then probably Mebane.

      IMO Lane isnt worth $6 mil. If he gets that on the open market, Seattle will let him walk. Oakland’s gonna go hard at Lane.

    • SeventiesHawksFan

      I thonk the priority re-signings in rough order are Bennett contract restructure, Baldwin extension, Rubin, Lane, veteran center or guard, and Mebane. That doesn’t include rfa’s. Lewis, Shead, Bailey, CM,

      Who I think is least likely to be re-signed (and in rough order): Sweezy (Glowinski costs $3 to $4 mil less); Okung (Gilliam saves you $6 million at least), Kearse (Graham returns and we save at least $2 to $3 mil with letting one of the young UW udfa’s assume his role), and Irvin (will require multiple players to do all the things he does; but each of those roles is either on the roster already or can be obtained much cheaper).
      The first three simply don’t provide the value over easily found replacements. Irvin is unique but his third down pass rush abilities are already on the roster in Frank Clark and Marsh. And we can find a first and second down LB (can be either side, since KJ is a moveable piece) who can do what Irvin does for a much more reasonable price.

    • lil'stink

      Davis Hsu is estimating we have $18 million to spend in free agents that will earn more than $2 million APY.

      He has the split being $11 million for offense, and $7 million for defense.

      Assuming those numbers are accurate I don’t think we are going to be able to keep nearly as many UFA’s that people are hoping for.

      • SeventiesHawksFan

        I keep coming to the same conclusion. A lot of our urfa’s will not be re-signed. And if they had been identified as priority players, they would have been re-upped by now. We haven’t let a core player get to free agency yet.

        I also think the front office did an excellent job btw of identityimg which players to let go to free agency, including finding and keeping players on IR or in development who will be their successors. The exception being the DT’s, Mebane and Rubin. I think the plan is to re-sign Rubin and hope for retaining Mebane, though we got to the Super Bowl and through the playoffs without him in 2014. If Mebane moves on, I fully expect a free agent first down, run stopping DT to be signed in the $3 to $4 million range, in the vein of the Rubin and McDaniel.

        The rest of our urfa’s are not must haves on next year’s roster. Lane and Irvin are the most difficult players to replace. But we aren’t limited in our options to move on from them either. There are four young corners who may be ready to move into his role next year. And I’d expect that at least one of those is probably where he was at developmentally two years ago.

        We are in pretty good shape to be no worse if most of our urfa’s move on, except at DT. And think plans are already in place for that to happen.

        • lil'stink

          Fortunately Pete and John have proved very adept at finding affordable DT talent the last few years. I’m hoping there is a Clinton McDonald type that they can find for 2016 in addition to keeping at least one of either Rubin or Mebane.

      • EranUngar

        If Hsu has 18M and i had 19M the number is right there. They can safely add a signing bonus or back-load the contract so that an 8M APY will only have a 6M cap hit on the first year.

        So, 18M cap in 2016 can allow 24M A|PY in contracts.

        I do not think they will sign all those guys. I’m pretty sure they will not sign Sweezy and Okung. However, if thier top priority is signing Okung, Sweezy, Lane, Irvine and Kearse – It’s a tight fit but it could be done.

        • Volume12

          Irvin, Sweezy, Rubin, Kearse in that order. Maybe Mebane.

          If Okung signs for $8-$9 mil, that’s a 3rd round comp pick. Lane gets $5-$6 mil, that’s a 5th, and if ‘Bane gets $3 mil, it’s a 7th.

          Shead isn’t going anywhere as he’s a ERFA.

          As for the RFA’s, C-Mike and Lewis.

        • lil'stink

          Not sure if that number had a “buffer” built in, but I would imagine they would want to keep an extra 2-3 million for a Kevin Williams type signing.

          So hard to predict who we try to re-sign as we don’t know how much confidence the team has in all of the guys who have essentially been redshirting, but I’m hoping we at least make a push for Lane and Rubin. If we keep Irvin that will end up being quite an expensive 4-3 linebacker group.

    • franks

      so 19M, and if we let Sweezy and Okung go, there’s

      Jon Ryan

      Outside FA’s?
      Ben Watson
      Maxwell, Thurmond or Browner

      Looks like a tight squeeze.

      • franks

        and Lane, who probably isn’t worth 6

  37. Ukhawk

    Per Petes comment on pass rush, William Hayes might be one to monitor in terms of a budget signing

    • Volume12

      Olivier Vernon. That’s who I’m hoping they target. Can line up outside and inside. Think, more athletic and dynamic version of Jason Jones.

      • KyleT

        As long as he’s less injured then Jones. My struggle is that I thnk we need someone inside who can add some pass rush while being a run stopper. There are only a few people who do that really well, but there are many players who have the skillset.

        • Rob Staton

          Isn’t that a bit contradictory though Kyle? There are few who can do it but lots with the skill set?

          Those players just aren’t in this draft.

          • Ukhawk

            Inside would be ideal as Rob et al has pointed out the draft is thin. That’s why I like Wilkerson so much. Young, big enough to go inside, could play the 5 & 3! Would make us a bully again. Much bigger impact than resigning Irvin, keeping Lynch and maybe even Okung if Gilliam can replace him.

          • KyleT

            My actual sentence was “There are only a few pool who do that really well, but many have the skillset”

            In other words this is a counter to the argument of “because we cannot get Aaron Donald we shouldn’t even try”

            I would prefer run stopping with anything north of 0% pass rush. I’m sorry, but my lasting images of that game and recollections of other games against similar teams are the opposing QB dropping back on 1st and 10 and having 7 1000 count it seconds to throw an easy completion. Why? Because our base DL was in and it’s too easy for a good OL to neutralize good ends vs anyone in the interior collapsing the pocket eventually.

            It’s not enough to win 12 games next year with a better OL but lose to the same team next year in the playoffs. Have to fix this or it will be our kryptonite next year as well

            • Rob Staton

              “It’s not enough to win 12 games next year with a better OL but lose to the same team next year in the playoffs. Have to fix this or it will be our kryptonite next year as well”

              In fairness they played Aaron Donald and Kawann Short twice each in 2014 — went 3-1 in those games and went to the Super Bowl.

              • KyleT

                Right, but you are missing my point. I’m saying that fixing the Oline is only part of the equation. It’s one we are really focused on. But the inability to stop the Panthers is just as important. There are two reasons for that: Gaping holes in our zone coverage and our inability to get pressure on Cam on downs not 3rd and long. Put those two things together and we had some major challenges on D.

                • Tien

                  I would love to improve our interior pass rush also but I’m not convinced that it’ll make or break our team if we can actually improve our OL so that it’s consistently competent. Remember, we lost to the Panthers in the playoffs mainly because our OL couldn’t protect Wilson and partially (at least in the 1st half), our DL couldn’t stop the Panthers’ run game. Cam didn’t have that good of a game against us and if we would have gotten another possession or two in that game, I’m convinced the Hawks would have pulled out the win because they would have scored and the D would have continued shutting down Cam.

                • Rob Staton

                  We don’t have to focus on beating the Panthers. As noted, they beat them twice last year. This year they should’ve won the first game.

  38. Ukhawk

    JS comments on KJR very interesting regarding depth and position groups. Similar to Pete (though JS doesn’t want to reveal them but) he focuses on the 80 man roster and there are several players they like and are excited about. Makes you wonder who those guys are and how this impacts who they resign and who they don’t.
    Glowinski replacing Sweezy?
    Sokoli for Lewis?
    Gilliam for Okung?
    Any other possibilities?

    • Volume12

      Definetly got the feeling when listening to him tht they’re high on Sokoli too.

      And one guy he almost mentions is CB Tye Smith.

      • Volume12

        One other guy that I think will be big for us next year is WR Kevin Smith aka ‘One a day.’

      • Ukhawk

        Yeah, when they asked JS for the best position group I think if in a headlock he’d say CB in terms of depth as it includes the likes of Smith, Simon, Seisay, Baptiste & Farmer who haven’t even seen the field in a Hawks uniform.

    • Jarhead's Sokoli Bandwagon

      I think exactly this. I have hoped the whole season to see Soke on the field. But they did him a healthy scratch every week. They were grooming him I think, to be ready for this next season. He is an athletic freak, and smart. So maybe after watching and learning, he will be able to start to grasp the protection calld. Or at least help RW facilitate that. If he is able to get the fundamentals down, and learn to be the voice of the Oline, then I think we will have a hell of a C anchoring our line

      • franks

        I’m pretty excited about him for the future if he can grow into it but I don’t want another Novak situation, let’s give him time to learn the position first. I think it’ll take more than a year to learn how to block, work within the scheme and read the defense and make line calls at the level of an NFL starter. My 2 cents.

  39. ulsterman

    In terms of the draft, I just hope we don’t see too many project picks especially on oline – just draft hardnose players who know what they’re doing.
    free agent wise hope they can keep lane, rubin and kearse and think okung could be harder to replace than some think.Irvin if the price is right then keep.
    as always rob great stuff, I don’t post much but am on the site every day. Keep it up

  40. John_s

    Geronimo Allison WR Illinois is reportedly having a great week at the EW shrine. I remember watching him against UW torching the team for 160 and 2 td’s. 6’4 and makes ridiculous catches

    Stephen Nembot, OT Colorado, former UW commit went on to be a 4 year starter at Colorado. 6’7 and has nice athleticism but raw.

    • drewjov11

      Nembot would definitely need to get stronger, but has all he athleticism necessary to play in the league. He’s not even 300 lbs. after a full college career. Weight room, nutrition, and experience. He shares a lot of similarities with Gilliam.

    • Volume12

      Geronimo was described by one scout as the ‘most polished WR here.’

      He’s 6’3, 197 lbs., good run blocker, tough, fluid, just reall solid.

      Former JUCO guy, lives in a house with his mom, brother, and grandparents. He shares a bed with his mom, who survived breast cancer and multiple heart attacks.

      Dude is gritty.

  41. bigDhawk

    Apologies if this dude has already been discussed previously, but Just watched this player’s only video on draftbreakdown –

    Chase Farris, OT (RT), 6-4, 306, Ohio State, #57.

    He will be playing on the West team in the Shine game today at guard. They have him listed at 6-5, 310.

    I’ve posted recently that I’m fed up with our ‘athletic’ OL model that’s produced nothing but lightweights that get ragdolled on every play. Watch the video of Farris, against Notre Dame from this season. The guy does not get get pushed backward into the QB once. His anchor is impressive. What’s more, he actually moves defenders against their will, something our athletic OL does precious little of. Here are some highlights from the video:

    00:34 – runs ahead of RB 30 yds downfield to make a block

    01:25 – pushes DL back at GL and RB runs over top of him for TD

    06:35 – moves entire right side of DL. next play same thing at GL for TD

    10:37 – second level seal block on MIKE to spring a 50 yd TD run

    This is the kind of offensive lineman we need if we are going to transition into a Wilson-centric spread passing attack – one that won’t get pushed backward into Russell on every play. Plus he just looks nasty, with a thick lower body and humongous biceps. Anyone else got anything else on Farris?

  42. TJ

    I’m late in this thread… so may have to ask again on the next one….

    I had an incredibly busy summer & fall due to a job change that included moving myself and my family to a new state… so I didn’t have the time to focus on the NFL or college seasons – or the individual performances of players – to the degree I typically do.

    It seems like everyone was high on JR Sweezy coming into the season for his physicality, his nastiness, and his apparent bright future as a guard. Why are so many of you ready to write him off now? Did he have a disappointing year? If so, was it him, or was it the entire OL? Based on what I did see, It was obvious that the OL needs to improve, and that they need better talent in multiple positions. I’m just curious why so many are down on Sweezy

    • KyleT

      I thought he had a down year. Specifically run blocking. Our offense both grew and suffered because of our lack of ability to consistently run block. It forced us to the rhythm passing game which the O-line was much better at handling and as it turned out RW and our receivers were really good at this.

      There were a few games we couldn’t get even that going though and tried to pound the rock. Rams game, 1st cards game, Carolina in the playoffs. These were the games that highlighted our inability to block consistently up front. Britt was the other one who was pretty bad. Gilliam grew better, Lewis was more of an average player, but both guards were bad and inconsistent

  43. Volume12

    Kentuck DT Cory ‘Poop’ Johnson is explosive man. Highly disruptive. One of the most Seahawky D-lineman I’ve watched this year combined with his character and MosesBread like personality.

    V-Tech DT Luther Maddy reminds me of Jurrell Casey a little bit.

    ND WR Chris Brown is a great route runner.

    Wisconsin OT Tyler Marz is awful. Why is he playing in this game?

    2 pass rushers. Stony Brook’s Vic Ochi can really get after the QB. And S. Utah’s James Cowser plays with his hair on fire. A mixture of Jared Allen and Cash Marsh. Dude looks like he’s gonna run in the 4.5’s. Crazy speed.

    • Trevor

      I think Crowser and Ochi are two guys you could definitely see the Hawks taking. Love both those guys speed, intensity and passion. A little undersized but so are Earl Thomas, Russ Wilson, Tyler Locket.

      I actually think Crowser is the best prospect coming out of Southern Utah.

    • Trevor

      Not the greatest game but All Star games never are. Learn more in the practices I think.

      • Volume12

        Agreed. About the practices.

        Cowser isn’t undersized. He’s 6’3, 250 with 32 + inch arms.

        ND WR Chris Brown is impressive. Dude consistently gets wide open.

        And I truly believe Maddy or Cory Johnson will be our rookie DT. Maybe both.

        BTW, Udub LB Travis Feeney is a stud on STs.

  44. Nathan

    Was just think about how the roster will take shape, and while there’s still plenty to be excitied about next year, 2017 could be the year we add some real difference makers in FA.

    That will be when we can extend guys from the 2013 draft, and to be honest, the cupboard is pretty bare there. Ditto 2014, there won’t be a need to ‘put money aside’ for those players.


    Or could we sign someone this year and backload the deal?

  45. John_s

    Daniel Lasco flashed early in the game. The announcers said that he had an excellent burst. Before his senior year he jumped 41″ vertical

  46. bigDhawk

    Jatavis Brown had quite a 4th quarter in the Collegiate Bowl. Googling him now…

  47. Miles

    I keep thinking this and feel like it’s going to be a topic of conversation at some point. Last year there was some fanciful conversation that the Seahawks would sign Ndomukong Suh. This year we’ll be talking at least in some depth about Von Miller. He is going to cost a *insert vulgar term here* load. He will even likely get franchised or re-signed by the Broncos before he even sniffs the market. But how do we ignore the possibility of signing him? It’s not like it’s impossible. We would need to let a lot of FAs walk, but I could see a scenario where we get him.

    Miller would invigorate our pass rush even further than it is. He could play the same role as Irvin and provide a constant force on opposing OLines. I just think it is too significant a proposition to overlook. Imagine the possibilities for rotation between Miller, Bennett, Avril and Clark. We could line up however we wanted and there is a good chance we will get in the backfield. I will sacrifice multiple players for that.

    With $18m to really play with, we may not be able to pay enough to him first year. But it’s possible to pay him less in the first year with the promise of bonuses in the subsequent years. If we could get Miller, perhaps our offseason would look something like this:

    Get Miller for 4 years/$44m.
    Re-sign Jeremy Lane 2 years/$10m with second year player option.
    Let Kearse, Okung, Sweezy, Mebane, Rubin, Irvin, Jon Ryan walk.
    Draft for the trenches, as follows.

    Rd1: DL/OL
    Rd2: DL/OL
    Rd3: DL/OL
    Rd3: DL/OL

    Keep in mind that this is all just for conversation. Obviously I am not the GM of the Seahawks but I do like to make bold suggestions and John Schneider is nothing if not bold. It may not be a move he’ll make, but is not a move that he would NOT make.

    With some good players on the o-line, this will be a good year to let our O-Lineman walk and try to instill some real solid players on it. Cable likes to coach up his own players, so let him. I also think there is not much we can do about our starting CBs next year, as bringing in a FA seems fundamentally difficult for learning the kick-step, and Seahawks corners need more than one year to learn the system (draft or FA). In this situation, we are really buying our opportunity for this year and next year. How would we not have the best pass rush in the NFL by doing this? It’s the most crucial aspect of almost every team in the game.

    • Rob Staton

      Miller will not sign for $11m APY.

      Suh’s average salary is $19m APY. That seems like a starting point for me. $44m over four years isn’t going to get it done.

    • cha

      The way Miller played yesterday the Broncos would be absolutely insane to let him walk away.

      • Miles

        He also plays a completely different position than Suh. There might be a different market for him that’s below $19m. In order for him to play somewhere else next year, there has to be something that doesn’t work out in Denver ie. the team doesn’t offer him enough and/or Miller threatens to hold out if franchised. Therefore, since this is his second big contract opportunity. So, if he’s made enough he might be willing to forge receiving top dollar in order to play for a winner and help the Seahawks become an amazing defense. This is all improbable but it would be cool if someone would play along in the world of improbability.

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