Ryan Shazier is a Seahawks wildcard

I’m working away this weekend but I wanted to get this tape out there anyway as part of a quick blog post.

This is Ryan Shazier versus Indiana. And I think this will allay some of the fears people have about his ability to be an impact player at the next level.

His official stat line for the game is: 19 tackles, five tackles for a loss and a sack. In his own words, “I just had a monster game. It was just ridiculous.”

Just watch this video. Watch it. Tell me you’re not impressed when you put it next to the tape above. Go on. I dare you. Resist being impressed.

For me he’s a rare player. 4.38 speed, a 42 inch vertical — and yet he hits like a ton of bricks. He’ll move sideline-to-sideline, he can drop into coverage and he can blitz. He was the heart and soul of the Ohio State defense last year — the ultimate tone setter.

I’d take him in the top-20. A team like St. Louis at #13 could easily take him — as could Arizona at #20.

The performance vs Indiana vindicates that type of grade in my opinion.

Yes he’ll need protecting by scheme. His best fit at the next level is probably the WILL. Let him play in space. Use his range. Limit the one true negative in his game (getting off blocks) and pump up the athletic qualities.

I can’t see him making it to #32 — but I’d have no problem drafting him in that spot. You can’t have enough players like this. And while a linebacker in round one isn’t a pressing need for the Seahawks unless K.J. Wright and Malcolm Smith both walk in free agency next year — a trio of Wright, Bobby Wagner and Shazier would have the makings of a legendary group.

Shazier actually name-checked Wagner as a player he admires. They share similar tendencies. Putting the three of them on the field would be an antidote to Colin Kaepernick running all over Seattle as he did in the first half of the NFC Championship game.

I still think we’re looking at a receiver or an offensive lineman at #32 — but I’m not ruling out a possible wildcard like this.

Shazier’s a rare talent — and if he makes it to #32 — there’d have to be an exceptional wideout or tackle available to stop me pulling the trigger.


  1. CHawk Talker Eric

    The hardest hitter I’ve personally seen in the NFL was Ronnie Lott (though I’m starting to think Kam is a close second). Lott was only 6′ 200lbs but hit like he was twice that size, mainly because he was so fast, he moved like a guided missile directly to the ball carrier. Earl Thomas is kind of like that – the missile part at least.

    It’s simple physics: force = mass x acceleration. If your acceleration is sufficiently high, then it doesn’t really matter how massive you are, you’re still going to produce tremendous force upon impact (i.e., hit like a ton of bricks).

    Ryan Shazier is like Ronnie Lott with 30+ extra lbs. Just let that sink in for a moment, and then tell me whether or not you want this guy on our team.

    • Coug1990

      The Seahawks own Kenny Easley was a harder hitter than Ronnie Lott. Lott has even said so and said Easley was the best safety of his era. What made Lott special was he was equally great as a safety and a CB.

      • hawkdawg

        Lott was a great safety, and his longevity alone was impressive. But even he bowed to Kenny Easley. That dude was something else. He played mean, like few others have played.

        • Lutefisker

          Good job Coug1990 and hawkdawg. I was going to mention that about Easley too but y’all had it covered. Easley was a little bit bigger, stronger and meaner than Lott. He also won AFC DPOY in ’83 and NFL DPOY in ’84, something Lott never accomplished. Lott has the rings and the longevity so people will always remember him over Easley but for about 4 or 5 years Easley was the best safety the game has ever seen. And Lott would probably be the first to tell you.
          One opposing player once said of Easley, “when he hits someone it’s like a car accident.” Easley’s game was all about controlled violence. But he was never dirty.

    • D

      Speed not acceleration, a good thing when you start from the deep middle zone.

    • shams

      Eric, it’s been a couple decades for me but I don’t think it’s force you want. It’s kinetic energy, and the formula is K.E. = 1/2mv^2. The squaring of the velocity means that speed has much, much more of an effect on the impact than mass does.

      As a simple illustration, a 1 lb object moving at 500 mph has the same force as a 500 lb object moving at 1mph…but as you can readily appreciate, the former will you kill you instantly while the latter isn’t much of a threat.

      • Moderation

        Per your own equation, a 500lb object at 1 mph would actually have the same force as a 1 lb object moving at only 22.5 mph ( square root of 500).

        • shams

          Yeah, I bungled that. Thanks.

    • Greeg

      Actually I agree. I have been reading about Ryan Shazier. However, Seattle has been able to find(and develop) linebackers like K.J. Wright(4th round), Malcom Smith(7th round) and Bobby Wagner(2nd round) in the lower rounds.

  2. Colin

    I’d only be against this pick if it meant passing over a Joel Bitonio/OBJ type player. I totally agree though, you put him in this defense and let Pete and Ken Norton coach him up, he’d be a monster.

    • bigDhawk

      I’d pass over Bitonio for Shazier all day. OBJ would be a tough call.

      • Colin

        I wouldn’t. Having a killer WLB is more of a luxury than a necessity. Getting better guard play has a bigger impact.

        • bigDhawk

          Bitonio vs Shazier is about value. If ‘better guard play’ is the goal, we can pull that out of a hat. Finding freaky athletic playmakers like Shazier at a semi-pass-rushing defensive position like how he would be used is not nearly as easy. If we are going to take a guard over Shazier at 32 he better be Hutch or Larry Allen. Bitonio is neither. Bitonio is a decent player, but he is way down on my board from Shazier.

          • Colin

            Hutch or Larry Allen? You’re kidding me, right? You’re talking about two of the best to ever play the game. Totally unfair expectation.

            So then what is your expectation for Shazier? Are you going to hold him to the standards of some of the best WLB to ever play if we draft him?

          • Lutefisker

            bigDhawk: The O-line was the weakest part of the team in 2013 by a longshot and if the Hawks don’t address that, they won’t make it back to the Super Bowl again this year. Guaranteed. That was the primary reason they were dead last in total offense and third down conversions over the last 4 or 5 games of the season and their offense sputtered.
            Why you think Bitiono wouldn’t be a good pick at 32 is beyond me. If he was Hutch, he’d be the top pick in the draft, OG or not. He can play any position on the line and he’s got the skills and attitude to succeed in the NFL> Besides that, Shazier isn’t likely to be there at 32. He’ll get scooped up by a team that needs him more than the Hawks do. I don’t think the Hawks are ready to give up on Irvin yet anyway, who’s just as fast as Shazier and about 15 pounds heavier.

            • Rob Staton

              As much as I like Bitonio, Seattle getting back to the Super Bowl is not dependant on drafting a right tackle early. A rookie RT isn’t any more or less likely to perform better than Bowie or Bailey with a years experience. The line needs depth and possibly one new starter, but it’s not a clincher for the SB when you have players like Wilson, Sherman, Thomas, Chancellor, Lynch, Harvin etc.

              • Lutefisker

                Some might think the O-line is the most important unit on the team. The Seahawks were able to overcome that defifiency by being good enough in other areas but it definitely makes their margin smaller against the competition.
                Wilson was sacked 51 times, which doesn’t factor in all the times he avoided sacks with his scrambling and mobility. Their entire offense went into the gutter over the last 5 games and that had a lot to do with it. They became even more exposed against strong pass rushing teams like the Rams.
                If they can solidify the O-line, particularly when it comes to pass protection, it increases their chances significantly. As it stands now, the line needs a lot of work, especially with the departures of McQuistan and Breno.
                Some think Bitiono will end up playing LG in the NFL.

                • Rob Staton

                  You could also argue Wilson’s 51 sacks also doesn’t take into account the number of times he scrambled and lost a yard or two. Seattle were handed three sacks against in the New Orleans playoff victory. Each one was a Wilson read and scramble, losing one yard each time. The pass protection on the day was more than fine, but they still gave away three sacks. As long as Pete Carroll wants to be — in his words — “the best scrambling team in the league” — Seattle will give up more sacks than most teams.

                  • Lutefisker

                    Please tell me you’re not trying to sum it all up like that. The O-line was getting mauled. Way too much penetration, oftentimes there were 2 or 3 guys in the backfield before Russ would even finish his drop and whatever Pete said about being a scrambling team, I’m sure that’s not part of the plan. Sure they had stretches where they held down the fort but the pass protection was slipshod at best.
                    Besides that, Wilson throws far more often inside the pocket than outside. I’m not sure about the exact numbers in ’13 but in ’12 he threw from the pocket on 72% of his pass attempts. Throwing on the move is a big part of Wilson’s game but he can’t do it all the time. He’s got to throw from the pocket and the line needs to give him enough time to do it. A lot of people think he’s primarily a scrambler but that’s a misconception.
                    Not only did he throw far more often inside the pocket but his QB rating and overall stats were better too.
                    Far too often the protection forced Wilson’s hand sooner than he wanted. His decision-making suffered, his accuracy suffered and the team sustained 2 out of their 3 losses during that stretch. They were definitely on the skids a bit when the playoffs rolled around.

                    • Rob Staton

                      “The O-line was getting mauled”

                      Not when all of the starters returned. You can’t talk about a situation where you’re without your LT, C and RT as if it’s normal.

                  • Lutefisker

                    For some reason it didn’t give a link to reply on your latest post so I’ll post a reply to it here.

                    I was actually referring to the last 4 or 5 games of the regular season when the offense went into the tank, which was actually when everyone was back and healthy.
                    When the injured starters came back, the protection got worse, not better.
                    PFF’s end of season ranking on the Seahawks’ OL was 27th, with their final quarter ranking, with all of the starters back, at 31st. They were also the 3rd most penalized unit in the league.
                    Like I was saying before, they were getting mauled. .

                    PFF: “An interesting year. Losing Russell Okung hurt but when they did get him on the field his play was a level or three below it’s usual high standard. At center Max Unger had a down year as a variety of combinations on either side of him failed. Essentially, they did enough at times for Marshawn Lynch to make yardage, but this had the feel of an experimental group with the coaches trying to luck into the right combination”

                    • Rob Staton

                      Just my personal view — but I don’t pay much attention to PFF rankings. They’ll rank an injury ravaged offensive line facing JJ Watt the same way they rank a fully healthy unit taking on the Raiders at home. Their grades are all over the place. How else can Earl Thomas be something like their 27th best safety in 2012? I don’t put any stock into their system.

                  • Lutefisker

                    ” I don’t put any stock into their system.”

                    It’s not the be all end all but their rankings reflect what I saw and I do put some stock in that.
                    Either way you cut it, the O-line just was not good. They won the Super Bowl last year in spite of the O-line, not because of it. It’s the area of the team with the most room to improve and they need to address it. Coincidentally it’s also the only area of the team that hasn’t gotten any love in the last couple offseasons, not unless you count late round draft picks, conversion projects and reclamation projects from other teams’ scrap heap. In 2012 they were a top 10 unit but if you don’t keep priming the pump it’s going to eventually break down. Not only was their pass protection among the worst in the league but the run blocking wasn’t all that good neither. Lynch didn’t have much room to run most of the season and it’s probably why he went 7 or 8 straight games in the 2nd half of the season without breaking 100 yards.
                    They were going to draft OL last year but an early run of OL picks forced them to go in another direction.

                    As for Shazier, it would be nice to have a player like that but it’s extremely unlikely he’ll end up a Seahawk. They would have to trade up for him for one thing and Pete & John don’t have a tendency to do that. Especially in a year where they lack a 3rd round pick. It’s more likely they might trade out of the first round and acquire a 3rd from someone else. But we’ll see. Trying to guess what they will do in the draft is just about impossible.

  3. Matt

    Shazier is exactly the type of athlete our FO targets. Is he a need for 2014? No. Would he be an impact player for 2015-2017? yes, and a cheaper option at that. In our winforever philosophy we think 2-4 years down the road, and rarely reach for need. Shazier is the epitome of this philosophy. He’s a sideline to sideline playmaker that would most definitely fit our defensive scheme. I’d rather see us draft a WR or Olinemen in the first, but would be excited if we came away with Shazier to close out day one!

  4. Mark

    I don’t think the Seahawks are shy about loading up at a position. We’ve all heard how they grade current players looking for the upgrade potential instead of just a normal big board. Even with talent at LB, Shazier would upgrade the position.

  5. John

    I have no doubt Seattle will have Shazier rated highly. Dude is a freak athlete and Pete is obsessed with speed. Shazier fits the bill of a Pete kind of prospect. That said, I personally like Kyle Van Noy as a LB prospect more than Shazier. I think Shazier is a player with decent instincts that relies on freak athleticism to succeed. I think he takes poor angles at times and gets totally swallowed up by blockers. I still think he’s a freak athlete and Seattle would maximize his potential. But I see Van Noy as a player that relies on incredible instincts. He’s always where he needs to be and my one gripe with him is his tackling which can be improved. His savvy is rare.

    I don’t think either will be SEAHAWKS but personally I like Van Noy more.

    • bigDhawk

      I agree with Shazier and the bad angles. For all his athleticism his instincts, play recognition, and anticipation are a tick behind. Hopefully it’s something that an instructive year of being a backup a and contributing on ST can fix.

      You like Van Noy better than Shazier. I like Billy Turner better than Bitonio. We can dream.

    • Jake

      Agree with you, John, w/r/t Kyle Van Noy. I also like that he can possibly be had in the 3rd round. He could replace either KJ or Smith, if need be.

      This would allow some combination of OL/WR in the first and second rounds.

      • Ray bones

        Be nice alright… If only we had a third rounder…

        • Bryan C

          Draft hasn’t started yet, but I don’t see any way in which the front office goes through this draft without a 3rd round pick in the deepest draft in years.

  6. Alex

    I’m not sure exactly how I feel about him. He checks all the boxes as a freak athlete, but at times he seems to get lost out there, either not being in the right position for pass coverage or getting swept up in the wake of blockers.

    He could be anything from a force-of-nature WILL linebacker, to a liability in pass coverage who gets picked on.

    I don’t think he’s Aaron Curry reborn, and I feel like with the right coaching his athleticism, tackling, and blitzing ability could make him special. But I feel like he’s a bit risky and that puts him behind a good WR or OT talent in my mind.

    • Alex

      I guess the more I think about it, I’ll be excited if we draft Shazier. I trust the PCJS way of evaluating talent, so if we grab him, we think he will make a bigger impact than the WR/OT/etc prospects remaining on the board. I’ll raise my eyebrows if we pick him over Bitonio or Lee/Beckham/Benjamin/Cooks.

      If it comes down to Moncrief, Landry, Latimer, Sua-Filo (I don’t remember how to spell his name because I don’t want us to draft him), and Shazier, I’ll be interested to see who will help us the most.

      • Cade

        Agreed. Really the depth at WR and OL may push some really cool defensive prospect down to us at 32. Between Cables ability to work with late round OL prospects and our success with UFA WR I trust this team to find a way to fill our needs in less conventional/expected approaches.

        • Alex

          The thing is, in my opinion, we don’t have any pressing needs. We’re not looking at WR because we are desperate, we’re looking at WR because this class is historically awesome at it.

          There’s every chance that Shazier is just Malcolm Smith with a bit more speed, and that Moncrief is Josh Gordon II.

          Still, there’s potential here, and it shows in the game film.

  7. Vin

    “Shazier’s a rare talent — and if he makes it to #32 — there’d have to be an exceptional wideout or tackle available to stop me pulling the trigger.”

    Rob, so does this mean you’d pick Shazier over Bitonio, moncrief, latimer, etc if they’re all there @ 32? Do you see him as BPA, even though the other guys fill perceived needs? We wouldn’t really reap the rewards of Shazier for a year or 2, but it would definitely help with Win Forever on defense.

    • Rob Staton

      Yes I would.

      • SHawn


        I did not think you were this high (taking Shazier over Bitonio) on Shazier. I have been hoping this guy falls to us for months. And for once I am being agreed with. Its a rare and awesome feeling.

  8. Nate

    I would take Shazier over Bitonio in a heart beat.

  9. Stuart

    Lets say we do pick Shazier at #32. For 2014 does Irvin move back to Leo? Or do you think we will rotate the LB’s like we do with the Dline?

    If we did select Shazier, which player becomes more important for us to resign after 2014 KJ or Malcom?

    The loss of either player will net us a likely 4th or 5th Round Supplement pick.

    I am looking forward to reading the answer to Vin’s question.

    • Cade

      It will be curious to find out what the market will be for KJ and Smith when that time comes.

      Rob do you have any guesses?

      My thought is that Shaziers strengths are the same as Smiths except hes way more explosive and a bigger hitter. Smith would basically become redundant. Like having Tate and Harvin.

      Anyone have any ideas about what Irvins current weight is? Is it still 248? Clemons weight is shown as 254. I was curious to see if Irvin were to put on 10 lbs in muscle if he could become more of an impact player rushing the QB.

      • Rob Staton

        I suspect Smith will get a nice offer to start elsewhere. They might make a push to keep KJ. I think that’s one deal they’ll get done.

      • Robert

        Reading your post, the thought occurred to me that KJ’s length, weight and exceptional football instincts might make him a good candidate at LEO. He might be a bit slow for PC’s ideal LEO, but he can sure play the run a lot better than Irvin. And he is great at sniffing out plays and blowing them up. I am thinking way outside the box here, which is a function of flailing in a feeble attempt to predict what PCJS will do next, over the last 4 years!

    • Rob Staton

      Irvin might go back to the LEO anyway after Jared Allen’s decision. For me Wright would be the priority but that’s no slam on Smith who I really like.

      • Davison Phipps

        I’d be surprised and disappointed if they moved Irvin to where they need him, rather than whatever they feel is his best positional fit. I’d love it if Irvin could succeed at Leo, but there hasn’t been much evidence he can.

    • Robert

      I gotta vote KJ because of his length, instincts and ability to play all 3 LB positions.

  10. matt509

    If Shazier is there the only way we don’t take him is if ODB or Benjamin ar there. I think he could even play Leo if we needed him to. He’s jack of all trades and we could use him everywhere.

    • matt509

      sorry OBJ

    • Rob Staton

      I’m not sure ODB’s SPARQ value would be too good these days… 🙂

      • Mark

        I think you’re right, but I’d love to see ODB in a Seahawks uniform.

      • Robert

        Who do you think PCJS select IF Shazier and Hageman are both available?

        • Rob Staton

          If it’s between those two I think Shazier. I really like both though.

    • SHawn

      Are we talking about Ol Dirty here? Or OBJ?

      • Rob Staton

        I’m talking about Ol dirty.

  11. Brandon

    I like Shazier quite a bit, but the Cardinals are creating quite a bit of smoke regarding their interest in the kid. Last year, bringing back Karlos Dansby to that defense helped them take a step forward. Now that they have lost Dansby this off season it looks like they want to duplicate the experience from last year, i.e. a good all round linebacker, effective against the run and pass. The 20th pick in the first round may seem high for him, but not a crazy reach.

    • Rob Staton

      I think Shazier could be a target for the Rams at #13.

      • Brandon

        It’s hard to see Shazier going to the Rams at 13. Just last year they took Ogletree in the first round. Does their 4-3 scheme justify taking taking another outside linebacker when they have serious issues in the secondary? It’s kind of funny picturing them with two rangy outside linebackers who don’t like to take on blocks. Could be brilliant I suppose.

        Fun fact. There hasn’t been an 4-3 outside linebacker taken in the top 15 picks since…Aaron Curry.

        Can’t seem the Rams reaching quite that far for what isn’t a need.

        • Rob Staton

          According to draft tek a 4-3 OLB remains a top need. For me he’d cap off possibly the best front seven in football. And they should be able to get a corner or safety in round two.

          • Bryan C

            All St. Louis needs then is a QB.

            • Rob Staton

              I think they do need a QB.

  12. rowdy

    I been looking at shazier for a couple months thinking he look like seahawk but since the combine all I can picture is him and wagner roaming the field. Pc/js have been rumored to look at safeties early in drafts even though they wouldnt challenge to start, this guy would challenge and could realistically win a starting spot. I think if 4 OT and 8 WR are off the board at 32 (and it will probably be more then 4/8) we shouldnt have to wait long to here his name.

    • bigDhawk

      Remember Seattle builds their board based on who they think can compete with their current players for a playing time. Is there a safety in this draft that could compete with ET3 or Chancellor? Not a chance. Could Shazier compete for playing time at LB? Absolutely. That is not to say we don’t draft a safety for depth or future consideration, but I think our high picks have to be able to compete with the current starters.

      • Robert

        They seem pretty high on Snead as a backup to Kam…

      • rowdy

        I agree, there is no safety this year but they were rumored to target on some with high picks in the past. My point was even though its not there biggest need don’t count out a high pick on a LB. just like last year when they went with a RB.

  13. Stuart

    Interesting, the comparison of Shazier and Malcolm Smith, R-1 player v R-7 player.

    Based on reading that alone, we should wait on LB until later rounds.

    However, Pete had the inside track/info on Smith for being a former player of his at USC.

    This will be the 5th draft for Pete, what percentage of his knowledge of college players has been lost since the players he recruited have likely graduated already?

    Do you think the dream team of PC/JS is slightly greater than past years, with their experience? Or do you think PC/JS may be slightly less effective now since Pete is further removed from college football?

    To me we are head and shoulders above any team in the NFL in this department. Which other duo of Coach/GM is even close?

    • Cade

      I think the comparison is only in the similarity of their skill sets. Shazier would immediately improve this defense and be a starter. Smith has been here for 3 years and still only plays in certain packages. Shaziers ceiling is massive.

      Not talking down Smith(he has been such a gamer in the last quarter of last season through the playoffs), just stating the disparity between the two players athletic ability.

      We also have this Kory Toomer LB fella that’s been continually hurt. Hes supposed to be a pretty good athlete so maybe we have a stud hidden away there.

    • Robert

      A big part of the Draft day genius of PCJS is the subsequent development of the player. PC is the Captain of that ship and is a master at inspiring, enrolling and maximizing each players potential. Then when Richard Sherman rises out of obscurity, everyone says they were geniuses for drafting him in the 5th. Maybe, they certainly are adept at evaluating potential in prospects. The bottom line is PCJS excel at evaluating and acquiring players and PC and co excel at developing and maximizing their potential.

  14. Alex

    So Rob, you’re calling Shazier out as a prospect high on your board in these comments – what WR/OL talents would you put right above and below him?

    • Rob Staton

      Above him:

      WR — Watkins, Evans, Lee, Beckham Jr
      OL — Robinson, Matthews

      • Alex

        So by your take, if he falls to 32 it’s basically a miracle and we almost have to jump on him.

        Do you feel he’s a sure thing, or is it a bet on the upside?

        • Rob Staton

          I don’t consider any player a sure thing really. I think in Seattle’s scheme at the WILL — where he will be protected — he can be a big time playmaker. Great range. Big hits. Turnovers. I think it’d be a safe bet. Even in other schemes I think he can be extremely productive. It just depends who else is on the board at #32 and how badly this front office feels like they want to spend a R1 pick on a linebacker. I’m not totally convinced they will. But Shazier is a terrific prospect nonetheless. And for me shouldn’t get past Arizona at #20.

  15. House

    If the likes of Bitonio/OBJ weren’t available, I’d have no issue taking Shazier. That being said, I’m PRAYING Bitonio or OBJ falls to #32

    • jake

      I’d rather have WR than OL Bitonio or this guy.

  16. Kenny Sloth

    I’d like to mention some of the negatives of Shazier’s game.

    He has very stiff hips in coverage, and gets turned around a lot. Plays a little lost in man. Relies on athleticism. He gets stood up a lot in run defense. Doesn’t really stack and shed well. Rob is correct in his assertion that Shazier will need to be protected by scheme at the next level. I think he could develop as a situational pass rusher, also. When blitzing he basically only gets pressure when he comes unblocked. Very patient player. Really impressed with his discipline.

    • Alex

      Agreed on the coverage issues, but I think his issues with being easy to stand up in blocking is a product of his size, no? Which, AFAIK, lining him up in the WILL position would help scheme away that weakness. You wouldn’t line Shazier up as a MLB like Wagner.

      • Kenny Sloth

        I think he’ll be vulnerable regardless. There’s not much on our weakside to dissuade the run. I think with Shazier at Will and whoever at Leo, opponents will see it as a favorable matchup to run on.

        • Alex

          I think the 4-3 Under is designed to bait that, really. The LEO is on the same side as your 3-tech tackle, and Kam can rotate down to add another man without breaking our pass pro scheme – you’ll have to have a lot of man-up blocks to get to Shazier, and I think that’s what Rob is alluding to when he says our scheme will protect him.

          For me, the concern is pass protection all the way – I agree that he would be a force against the run, if deployed as a WILL linebacker.

  17. jake

    Not impressed. LB like him are dime a dozen. Change of direction is slow, poor technique…

    • Drew

      Dime a dozen? How many linebackers run a sub 4.4 forty at 230-240 lbs with a 42 in vertical??? I’d be willing to bet that there are less than 5 with those measurables. Bobby Wagner is one of the most explosive LBs in the game today and he’s not even as fast and explosive as Shazier…close though.

  18. CC

    Sorry, I don’t think he’ll fall to 32 – in this copy cat league we live in – everyone saw the Seahawks speed. A playoff team or cusp team will draft him. Everyone wants to find the guys who can cover the big TE like KJ did – or the hitter like Kam – or even the flyer on Irvin.

    • Rob Staton

      I don’t think he lasts until #32 either.

  19. Don

    I disagree completely.

    I don’t see the need for Shazier. Yes, he may have upside and athleticism, but how much would he improve the team that is already the NFL’s #1 defense? Just how much better does it need to be?

    I hope the Hawks address the needs on offense with the first two picks, OL and WR. With Tater-Tot and Rice gone the Hawks don’t have depth like they needed last year. You really think Harvin will play all 16 games and the playoffs?

    The OL needs help with the RT and RG missing. You really want RW running for his life all season? If Wilson gets sacked hard and misses a few games, that is when you wished you had taken a tackle or guard.

    A good OL will help the defense by sustaining drives late in the game and chewing up time with a good run game and giving Wilson more time to make the 3rd dn pass.

    Lets look at the big picture.

    • Robert

      KJ and Smith are FA’s after this year…
      Carp’s 1st healthy off-season and he apparently is working hard…lost 20 lbs, looks great etc. Last year, the line suffered numerous injuries. Sweezy much improved in year 3. Bailey and Bowie are poised to challenge and contribute. RW wont be rag-dolled again this year whether or not we draft OL in the 1st. OL is on a trajectory to have a much better year than last. I predict rushing total and YPC average back to and beyond 2012’s lofty levels!

      • AlaskaHawk

        I have to agree with Don. Offense first until we have a healthy line. Talk about our current offensive line is just hope and speculation until they can play a full season together. God bless them all but in all likelihood there will be a rotation on the offensive line until they find the right people. We need to keep drafting until we do.

        Linebackers are so next year. Besides we could hire 4 linebackers for what we will pay Sherman next year. Let’s work on the offense this year and concentrate on defense next year.

    • Rob Staton

      Two points here:

      — I’m not saying I would draft Shazier over every other player in the draft. I’m saying he’s a very talented player who is a wildcard for Seattle. For example, if there’s a mad rush on receivers (could happen) and even guys like Joel Bitonio are off the board — you’re not taking a tackle or receiver over this guy just for the sake of it.

      — The #32 pick isn’t Seattle’s only pick in the draft. In fact we’ve discussed the likelihood of an OT heavy draft. But that doesn’t mean they have to spend #32 on a right tackle. The depth is there at OT if the options in round one just don’t fit the value.

    • bigDhawk

      Resting on your laurels and passing over undeniably superior talent to draft for present need is how you become a loser in this league, and is exactly the opposite of looking at the big picture. We can draft for – and fix – our needs at OL and WR in the 5th round and later. In the higher rounds we had best be taking the player who is better than everyone else on the board at that pick regardless of position. How much better does our defense need to be? About as better as our running game needed to be when we took CMike last year. If he turns out to be the player JS believes he is then you will have your answer about how much better the defense and all areas of the team needs to be year to year. Do not ever pass over rare, elite talent just because you don’t presently have a spot on the roster for that player and have a hole to fill somewhere else.

      • AlaskaHawk

        I really think your playing the rare and elite card too much with Shazier. He is fast and a great tackler and a great hitter. He also gets washed out of plays because he can’t get off of blocks. He would be a great addition to the team, as was Irvin who will be playing somewhere back there too. As far as drafting goes we seem to be relying on the late rounds for both secondary and offensive line. A fine strategy as long as it works.

        • Robert

          Shazier has very big hands and ridiculous athleticism. He would become very adept at getting off blocks with our coach-em-up. A very special player. I would think Shazier and Hageman are very high on our board, maybe Tuitt, as well.

  20. James

    I do think Shazier lasts to #32, and here’s why…. The reason he has been showing up on some national mocks in early R2 recently is because it is actually difficult to project him to a team. He is a legit top 20 talent, probably even top 12, but he is solely a 4-3 Will LB. Eliminate all 3-4 teams (including the Cardinals) because he absolutely is not big enough to play OLB in the 3-4. Of the 4-3 teams, few are good fits…. the Patriots have Jerod Mayo, the Bengals have Vontaze Burfict. And the 4-3 team needs to be one that uses their Will LB in attack mode across the line of scrimmage, not the more traditional role. Other 4-3 teams just have much greater needs: Falcons, Panthers, Giants, Jags, etc. I suspect the Rams would love to have him, but probably pick too high for his value. That really only leaves the Seahawks and the Broncos. The Broncos are a possibility, but I haven’t seen Shazier mocked to them yet. He may fall to the Seahawks simply for the reasons noted above, and if so, Pete and John will select him. How many times do they have to tell us that they go for the special, elite athlete, the playmaker, the difference-maker…that is Shazier to a tee.

    • Robert

      Sounds good to me! Shazier’s upside is very tantalizing. After a coach him up year, he would allow us to do phenomenal things in pass D with his speed and he is a missile in run D! Big, heavy hands…he will learn how to defeat blockers better.

    • James

      Some have indicated that Shazier might go to the Cardinals to replace Karlos Dansby at OLB in their 3-4. This is a smokescreen, in my view. Dansby is 6-4, 250, the prototype 3-4 OLB. Shazier is 6-1, 237, strictly a 4-3 WLB. Again, when you try to mock Shazier to a team, you see that there are few good fits until you get to the Broncos and Seahawks at the bottom of R1.

    • Dirk

      Couldn’t he play inside in a 3-4 ala Novarro Bowman?

      • Colin

        He needs more size to do that.

        • Dirk

          Bowman came out of college at 6′ 243lbs, just 5 lbs bigger than Shazier.

          • Colin

            He hardly looks over 230 in these films, however. Even Rob noted he looks like the kind of guy who would struggle to retain weight during the season.

  21. Ukhawk

    IMO R1 is too high to take an LB in the Hawks scheme. Similarly to OL. Maybe you throw that away for an exceptional prospect but shazier ain’t. Bad instincts, angles, fighting off blocks. Watch his tape vs Michigan, he gets swallowed up and manhandled often. I’d go WR, LEO, DT, and even OT all day long over LB. Need to review some of the later prospects at LB, for me another KJ would be perfect.

    • Kenny Sloth

      He is one of the most instinctive LB’s I’ve seen. He takes gorgeous angles with speed and decisiveness. He is shit at fighting off blocks, but that is a coachable thing. I simply have to disagree with your evaluation of the tape.

  22. EranUngar

    Picking Shazier would be a huge statement IMO.

    I wrote here before that his insane athletic properties coupled with his perfect tackling makes him a very seahawky player.

    Having said it already, picking him as our 1st pick is way more then just his value as a player. It’s a declaration regarding the state of our whole roster.

    This FO has been very straight regarding it’s mod of operation. You evaluate the player; you compare him with your current players and end up with his “improvement factor” value. I.E. – the quality of the current roster plays a big part in the value of the potential player. Having “glaring holes” or “needs” play a big part in the final ranking of our draft picks since those are manifested as lower marks to current players and increase the differential value of potential picks.

    In 2010 we had gapping holes in our OL and DB and we picked a LT and FS. In 2011 we still needed more talent in the OL and we got Carp. In 2012 we needed a pass rusher and we got Irvin. In 2013 after getting Avril, Bennet and Harvin in FA we were pretty much set all over so we went BPA with our 1st pick and it happened to be a RB.

    After winning the SB we lost some key contributors at WR, DL and OL. Those groups are the immediate suspects in our mind to provide lower current roster value and thus increase the value of potential picks. This draft class is very deep all over and mainly at WR and OT.

    All the above should make for a WR/OL/DL pick as our 1st pick. Someone out of the Latimer, Landry, Bryant, Moncrief, Robinson, Benjamin, Bitonio, Martin, Moses etc. will be there at the 32nd pick.

    If Shazier is there when we pick, and I don’t think he will, picking him would mainly be a statement regarding how high this FO is on the guys we already have. It would be a declaration that we are just fine with Scruggs, Hill, Jesse, Boatright and Mayoa on defense. We are doing great with Bowie and Bailey on the OL. We are very happy with Harvin, Baldwin, kearse etc. as receivers.

    The last time this FO felt that we fine all over and went BPA it ended with a victory in February.

    I don’t think Shazier will be there at 32nd. I don’t think we will pick him even if he is. I think we have greater needs and there will be enough quality players to fill those needs at 32nd. But, if he is and we do…WATCH OUT.

    • AlaskaHawk

      Picking him is mostly a statement that we want to remain the number one defense. R Wilson will just have to work with whatever late round offensive line and wide receivers we find. But that’s okay, that’s how we won a Super Bowl.

  23. EranUngar

    Late round LEO –

    After reading the SPARQ table for LEO’s at fieldgulls i took a look at the top rated player Brandon Denmark.

    Obviously a freak athlete but his film doesn’t look that bad. could be a late round or UDFA option.

    highlights – http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ptk_oKKYFp8

    pro day – http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gkMcgkANmIk

    • Javi

      Awesome! I saw in fieldgulls and I like

      If we get as UDFA would be a luxury. Next Chris Clemons / Benson Mayowa

    • House

      I can see the justification of taking this guy in the 6th rd. During the position drills, looked a little stiff in his cuts, but brushed up technique can adjust that.

      Id like to see more game tape. He gets in the backfield and gets his hands up if he doesnt hit the QB. I like that

    • James

      A caveat about Denmark’s highlight tape (or anyone else’s for that matter). These are just the highlights….they do tell us something about the player’s ceiling, but only a pro scout can truly project performance (and even then, they are wrong as often as they are right). Look at it this way….what if people could watch the highlight tape of us as husbands/boyfriends. Wow, would we look like a prince….the perfect Valentine’s gift, the surprise bunch of flowers, the hours spent listening to emotions that seem absurd to us. But, what about the other 99% of the time, when we are nothing more than lazy bums who sit in our recliner all weekend watching sports on tv? Only the pro scout has talked to our wives/girlfriends and knows the sordid truth.

      • EranUngar

        DAMN…there goes my 1st. round pick for husband of the year. Once they know who much time i spend reading seahawks stuff i’ll be lucky to be an undrafted free husband.

        There are no game tapes on this guy and i have a day job so i just mentioned the guy in case any of you know some more.

    • Ben2

      Yeah I saw that sparq article with Denmark and his highlight tape….looks like he played a wide 9 and stood up a lot….seemed a little stuff (not a real corner bender – needs that wide 9 angle). Looked like the competition he was playing against in his highlight tape was pretty underwhelming ….yeah, I can see a 7th rd or UDFA flier on him

  24. Drew

    I can see Shazier being converted to strong safety by a team that tries to copy the Hawks defensive scheme. Let him roam around! He can play up in the box like Kam and he has the speed to cover like Earl. Just needs to be coached up. That’s the first thing I thought of when I saw how fast and big he is. Can you imagine if we had him at WILL, what we could do in coverage? You would never know who will be where between him, Kam and Earl.

    I vote with making the defense better at pick #32, offense later.

    • Kenny Sloth

      He is really poor in coverage when asked to defend anything besides the curlflat.

      • Robert

        The LOB will get him up to speed in coverage technique and then he will be a terror!

      • Ben2

        Our interior defenders, eg linebackers, play zone….BWags wasn’t very good at this in his 1st year and a halfish but really came on/got better in his zone pass defense. The hawks develop players….Shazier would improve in this area (and using his hands to better shed blockers) with our coaching.

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