Seattle’s Frank Clark flashes first round talent, explosion

Frank Clark was taken by the Seahawks at pick #63

Frank Clark could’ve been a first round pick. The character flags and his dismissal from Michigan made him available to the Seahawks at the end of the second round.

Let’s look at how he compares to the first pass rusher taken in the draft — Dante Fowler Jr (#3 overall).

Clark’s a shade under 6-3, he’s 271lbs and ran a 4.64. Fowler Jr is 10lbs lighter and ran a 4.60 at the combine. Clark beat Fowler Jr in the vertical (38.5 vs 32.5 inches), broad (118 vs 112 inches), three cone (7.08 vs 7.40), short shuttle (4.05 vs 4.32) and the 60-yard shuttle (11.22 vs 11.89).

They’re virtually the same height but Clark’s arms are an inch longer at 34.5 inches.

The most important measurable might be the 10-yard split. Clark ran a 1.58 while Fowler Jr managed a 1.59. Anything under 1.60 is considered excellent.

Statistically Fowler Jr managed 15 TFL’s in 2014 compared to Clark’s 13.5 — although he played two more games due to Clark’s dismissal.

PFF ranked Clark as the third most productive pass rusher in college football last season and the sixth best versus the run. Fowler Jr came in at #8 in terms of pass rush and wasn’t in the top-20 for run defense.

Is it fair to contemplate how much better Dante Fowler Jr actually is — the #3 overall pick? It makes you wonder how high Clark would’ve been drafted without the red flags. That’s not to underplay Fowler Jr’s tape (which is excellent). He showed he could rush from any spot (D-end, inside, linebacker). He’s much more nimble working in space and there are times where he just sidesteps blockers and it’s over. Fowler Jr has cat-like agility and that is the one big separating factor.

The thing is, Clark’s tape isn’t half bad either.

Fowler Jr was the best defensive player in the draft (Leonard Williams was a little overrated, but that’s another story). Clark isn’t a million miles away. It sounds absurd because it hasn’t been talked about. With a clean off the field record it’s almost certain Clark would’ve been one of the biggest risers. He certainly wouldn’t have been available for the Seahawks.

Whether this team should’ve capitalised on that situation is a debate that will dominate Seattle sports media this week.

Cliff Avril ran a 1.50 split at 253lbs. Bruce Irvin ran a 1.55 split at 245lbs. Clark is nearly 20lbs heavier than Avril and 26lbs heavier than Irvin. He’s in the same ball-park for short-range quickness.

We’re talking about an exceptional physical specimen with a rare combination of length, speed and explosion.

So we’ve established he’s a spectacular athlete. What about his play?

Clark is a splash play specialist. A splash play is recorded any time a pass rusher negatively impacts a pass attempt. That could be a sack, knocking down the ball at the LOS, tipping a pass or hitting a QB while he’s throwing the ball.

Not all of these plays show up in the stat column. There’s a lot of focus on sacks in particular — as if it’s the greatest determining factor in how effective a player is.

In many cases it’s a red herring.

Let’s say a defensive end explodes off the snap and gets into the backfield, forcing the quarterback to move off the spot. He tries to scramble and runs straight into the arms of a defensive tackle who records the sack. The D-end makes the play but gets none of the credit.

Clark only recorded 4.5 sacks in ten games for Michigan in 2014. That doesn’t even begin to tell the story of his production. He added 13.5 TFL’s, broke up two passes, averaged 4.2 tackles a game and impacted many more snaps.

His pursuit is phenomenal and virtually unmatched in the 2015 draft class. He works down the line better than any other pass rusher, stringing out run plays and often making tackles by the sideline. He doesn’t give up, the motor never stops. If he doesn’t win initially in a 1v1 battle he keeps going, works off the block and largely holds position at the very least. These are all valuable traits when it comes to run defense. Even if he doesn’t end up being a sack artist — he’ll always hold major value for his range and pursuit against the run. He’s a tough guy to move around.

In a play against Akron he’s double teamed off the edge giving the defensive tackle a 1v1 situation up the middle. It allowed the DT to get the QB off his spot and scramble to his left. Clark disengages and chases the QB down for no gain by the far sideline.

In the same game he stunts inside and explodes through the middle to absolutely hammer the quarterback as he throws (forcing an incompletion). The quarterback limped off to the sideline.

You see everything you look for in an accomplished pass rusher too. Too many college players rely on speed to dominate overmatched offensive linemen. When they get to the next level and they take on superior blockers they are one-dimensional and become ineffective or resort to specialist roles. Clark is capable of taking on a blocker, disengaging with heavy hands and exploding into the backfield. He’s willing to mix things up — stunting inside, using the spin move. He’ll draw you in from different angles. He’s adept at converting speed to power and yet you still see the two fundamental plays — the speed rush to the edge and the bull rush.

Look at the video below and fast forward to 0:28:

Clark engages the tackle and drives him into the backfield. At that point he’s won the battle, it’s all about how quick he can get to the QB. He eventually disengages to make the sack. This is the type of play you see in the NFL all the time. At the next level you rarely beat a tackle with pure speed the same way you do against the college tackles. You have to battle, you have to work. Clark is pro-ready in that regard.

Fast forward to 1:37 in the same video. Clark uses one arm to keep the tackle off his frame (length crucial here) and just rides him into the quarterback. It takes a little while to get the QB down but the end result is a 12-13 yard loss. Speed, power, finish.

Frank Clark’s been outstanding tonight” yells the commentator after the play.

If you need evidence he can be a quick-twitch speed rusher, take a look at 0:52 below:

He glides beyond the right tackle, bending the arc and exploding. The quarterback does well to make a quick throw — but this doesn’t take anything away from Clark’s play.

Look at the same video at 1:35. Clark makes a fantastic break off the snap — he’s a split-second ahead of every other lineman. He’s straight into the backfield leaving the right tackle in his stance. If you freeze the frame at 1:38 you see a quarterback about to be slammed for a big sack. He senses the pressure and tries to escape. On another day he runs straight into a crowded LOS and probably straight into a defensive tackle. A nice double team on the DT means he can scramble up the middle for a short gain before Clark brings him down.

This is a splash play. The quarterback is trying to throw the ball downfield but can’t because Clark’s in the backfield. Just because he avoids a big loss and makes a couple of yards on the play — it’s still a win for Clark.

Look at 1:58. He engages the left tackle four yards behind the LOS. Why? The tackle knows he has to set a deep base against this guy. Clark shrugs him off and tackles the running back for a one-yard gain. It’s a brilliant play.

And that brings us to the Northwestern game. I broke it down in March so rather than repeat myself you can check it out here. Here’s one noticeable line though:

He looks like a second round talent with an UDFA character flag. If you trust him β€” or if you can make yourself believe you can trust him β€” you’re going to get a guy who can play quickly, will excel against the run and make plays even as a rookie.

He shoots gaps better than possibly any other defensive end in this class. He’s certainly among the top group. This kind of play flashes up quite a lot:

Lower body explosion and speed isn’t defined solely by a 40-yard run in a straight line. Here’s the 1.58 split and the 38.5 inch vertical showing up on tape.

Without the character concerns, there’s every chance Clark would’ve built momentum at the combine and ended up going in the first round.

Michael Bennett played 763 snaps in the 2014 season. He was always going to have a bigger role in his second season since returning to Seattle, but it’s still too many. Clark can realistically spell both Bennett and Avril. He’s somewhere between the two players in terms of speed, power and the ability to work along the line. There’s even some evidence he can play in space — he dropped on the odd occasion for Michigan and didn’t look out of place.

Seattle retained most of a defense that remained #1 in the NFL for points and yardage last season. The one player of significance they lost — Byron Maxwell — they replaced with their most expensive veteran acquisition in the open market (Cary Williams). Now they’ve acquired an explosive pass rusher to replace two-sack O’Brien Schofield.

If Jordan Hill makes a full recovery, if Cassius Marsh can force his way into the rotation, if Brandon Mebane can reach his 2014 form and if Ahtyba Rubin helps solidify the middle — you could be looking at comparable depth to the 2013 line.

Tomorrow — a look at Tyler Lockett.


  1. AlaskaHawk

    I really enjoyed the tape. Nice to know we got an impact player! Go Seahawks!!!

    • Nichansen01

      In our eleven picks, it looks like we got:

      Jimmy Graham- One of the top two pass-catching tight ends in the league
      Frank Clark – One of the most athletic and powerful pass rushers in the draft, who fell due to his tormented past
      Tyler Lockett – A big play receiver who has the potential to be a #1 Antonio brown esque player who is one of the top college return men in the country
      Terry Poole – An extremely versatile and athletic ferocious mauler of an offensive lineman, who provides much needed depth and could start day one.
      Mark Glowsinski – A powerful, athletic linemen with great technique who takes the pressure off resigning Sweezy
      Tye Smith – A corner who plays with fiery passion and tenacity who will excel working along side Richard Sherman, Earl Thomas, Cary Williams and Kam Chancellor.
      Obum Gwacham – An energetic, athletic ball of clay type player who could be moulded into the next Bruce Irvin.
      Kristjan Sokoli – An insanely, insanely, INSANELY athletic defensive end who could develop into a probowl center
      Ryan Murphy- Jeron Johnson replacement, but with the upside of being extremely versatile and athletic.

      I don’t know why people are complaining, this seems like a draft for the ages. Plus Austin Hill, if he makes a full recovery, could become a great #2 in a year or so, could be a great Jermaine Kearse replacement.

      Thomas Rawls is also a very interesting propect, plays extremely angry, could be a diamond in the rough.

      For those worried about the running game, we have two great full backs to compete in camp, and who knows, maybe this is the year Christine Michaels finally takes off.

      • Mylegacy

        Nickansen01 – that’s an excellent quick primer.

        With Graham and Lockett we’ve clearly greatly improved our passing offense. Lockett, all by himself, gives us top drawer punt and kick return teams – the like of which we haven’t seen since Harvin AND Tate were on the team. With Poole, Glowinski and perhaps even Sokoli (being tried at C) our offensive line will clearly open the pre-season with some serious competition. Smith and Murphy – plus our in house survivors from last season give us a reasonable expectation that the LOB will be its usual Booming self!

        AND – Rob is quite correct in assessing Frank Clark’s on field play – the man is strong as a horse and explosive. When he can he doesn’t just tackle he explodes through the poor target – he’s going to cause a lot of fumbles.

        Overall we look considerably healthier, stronger, faster and more capable at lots of positions than we were by the end of last year. The Hawks are going to be very hard to stop next season. Now lets get Wagner and that short QB guy signed long term. Then we’ll be cooking on all burners!

        • Phil

          Love how physical Clark is. He will help set the tone on defense.

  2. John_s

    I am not saying is going to be this player, but his size, wingspan and athleticism are on par with Robert Quinn. They both play the game hard and at full speed at all times. Quinn at this time has better hand usage and I think is better at rounding the edge but from an athletic standpoint and converting speed to power they are comparable.

    I can see why the Seahawks decided to take him even though they knew they were going to take a lot of heat. How many times are you going to get a guy at the bottom of round 2 with his measurables?

    • Rob Staton

      Personally I think Quinn is faster and more quick/twitch. He was leaner coming into the league and perhaps more of a LEO in Seattle’s scheme.

      It’s a good point on the measurables in the late second. And ultimately the crux of the debate we’ll be hearing all week on talk radio.

  3. redzone086

    I’m not sure how we as fans respond. I’m still a Hawks fan and I want another super Bowl ring but I’m not a fan of this player or this players back story. Where does that leave me? I’m not sold that his talent which is on par with the first round talent justifies this opportunity. Now I’m all for second chances and this was clearly a team need so welcome to Seattle Frank Clark but don’t get too comfortable because the jury is still out.

    • AlaskaHawk

      Seems like a lot of players with troubles with DV coming out of college. Some of them probably didn’t have a good home life. Hopefully they will be given couples counciling. I have no issues with the Seahawks drafting him. He’s got to be told that if it happens again he will face jail time and losing playing time. The league won’t kid glove rookies.

    • Rob Staton

      A fair stance to take redzone086.

    • Belgaron

      I’ve got two words for no tolerance approaches to DV or other charges — Brian Banks.

      The more these types of allegations are treated like a black/white moral issue, the more opportunity there is for false charges to ruin peoples lives. The NFL’s hard line against DV will result in very short leashes for players prone to testing the limits and DV offenders will be bounced out of the league.

      If JS/PC get burned by a guy they go out on a limb for, they will be less likely to do so in the future.

      But if a player is taking full responsibility, receiving counseling, and trying to change why must they be relegated to never getting an opportunity to play professional football? Would people be that much morally superior if they knew their barista or grocery checker has been arrested for DV?

      If anyone has a chance to rehabilitate these guys, its Pete Carroll. I trust him to take a chance to make a difference. Not cart blanch but at least to investigate fully and choose some deserving players to bring in.

    • Willyeye

      Two years ago the Seahawks had a reputation for being the PED kings of the NFL. There hasn’t been a positive PED test (or even a positive Substances of Abuse test) for the Hawks in two years…Carroll got rid of or let walk all of the druggie guys except Irvin…we’ll see if they let him walk too.

      My point is that of all the HC’s in the NFL, if PC could clean up the drug stuff, I see no reason why he can’t help rehabilitate this kid. Everybody deserves a second chance…a lot of kids make dumb mistakes…but it’s not right to place a stigma on a kid that made a couple of dumb mistakes. He is likely just a product of a tough childhood. He may turn out to be a decent person because of the Seahawks.

    • CMG

      I agree that it’s difficult to know how to feel about Clark. But, after we drafted him I started to read a lot more about his story and it sounds like his case has been overblown because of the recent (and appropriate) emphasis on reducing DV in the NFL, and everywhere. I think it was labeled DV because he was in altercation with his girlfriend and not because he is abusive. Both he and she say that she started it by throwing things at him and biting him. He retaliated (they both claim) by pulling her off by her shirt/necklace, and pushing her. He claims to have not hit her, which PCJS believe; I’m not sure I do, but I don’t want to try to find pictures so there’s no real way to know other than trusting him, which is admittedly very difficult. But, it is for these reasons that he was only charged with disorderly. This doesn’t exonerate his actions and at best he acted very poorly. But I think that as long as he is kept on a short leash he should be given the opportunity to prove that one mistake will not define how is as a person.

  4. AlaskaHawk

    Two teams that I thought really helped themselves: the Titans with a Combo of Mariota and DGB.
    St. Louis with Tod Gurley and some new offensive linemen.
    And then there is Seattle where the tough get tougher.

    • CharlieTheUnicorn

      The team that hit a moon shot in the draft….. Atlanta Falcons. They filled needs, got great value and made some shrewd moves. They will be contenders in the NFCS, if not the out right favorites.

      The other team to note, the Jets had a quietly solid draft. Getting the “arguably” best player in the draft at #6, that makes their draft no worse than a B…or dare I say an A.

      • arias

        I really liked what they did too. They really had an outstanding draft all the way down to their 7th round flyer on converted receiver and CB/safety prospect Akeem King.

    • Rob Staton

      Best first two days of the draft IMO belong to Chicago. Hard to judge day three because the big names fall for a reason and there’s a lot of unknowns too.

    • arias

      I think that’s a good picture of two teams that unquestionably improved. Titans also have Bishop Sankey who for weird reasons I don’t totally comprehend, got sporadic carries and wasn’t used efficiently IMO last year, but is poised to be much improved as they picked up a fullback, Fowler, in the 4th that should be able to block for him. Give him some space and he’s a fierce runner that his 3.7 YPC last year didn’t do justice to. They’ve got the building blocks.

      The Rams actually have a weapon the hawks will actually need to game plan for now.

      • Nichansen01

        I’m worried about the Rams, I honestly feel like they are the biggest threat to the NFC west right now.

        Nick Foles is pro bowl caliber, and is miles ahead of Shaun hill and Austin davis.
        They have a legit back now, and they have some lineman. The receiving core has always been decent. And the defensive line, is either the best or second best now in the league (could be second to Jets, but unlikely).

        • arias

          It’s hard for me to get too concerned about the Rams until Foles can show that 2013 was not a fluke season where he was a product of Kelly’s offense. Last year he seemed lost from the very start of the season way before you could even excuse his play from injuries suffered later on.

          Their DL is fierce and our OL is weaker than last years, that’s already a match up problem that gave our offense fits in the season finale.

          But until Foles steps up I can’t see them going anywhere. I’m more concerned about Arizona since a healthy Palmer isn’t shabby.

          • Hawksince77

            One thing people forget is that the stretch where Foles looked like a world beater the Eagles played the absolute bottom pass defenses in the league that year. So often he threw deep, way off target, but the coverage so poor it resulted in a TD.

            Against better defenses he wilted. So we shall see if he is any better with the Rams.

        • Brett

          Foles pro bowl caliber? If he couldn’t stick in Chip Kelly’s offense, I’m not sure how he’ll be effective in Brian Schottenheimer’s.

  5. bobbyk

    I know a fair share of people disagreed, but I thought Leo was our biggest need and I’m glad that through their actions that Carroll and Schneider seemed to agree. Personally, I thought we still hadn’t replaced Clemons (Schofield was ineffective) and am glad that we have a three headed monster again.

    If Hill stays healthy for a change, our D could be better than ever with a four headed pass rush monster. That’s scary for opponents and darn fun for us to contemplate.

    Had Clark’s incident never happened, I also doubt he would have been there for us at #31 if we hadn’t acquired Graham. In a way, if he keeps his nose clean, we could very well have ended up with a first round pick.

    Great write-up on Clark, Rob. Truly enjoy this stuff. I know we talked a lot about Lockett but still looking forward to the write-up tomorrow. I watched a lot of his games prior to the draft and he’s a guy who regularly created separation.

    One thing I will say about Lockett concerning the “experts” scouting reports that say he can be caught from behind. If you watch Lockett getting “caught from behind,” it is almost always because he burned the CB and had to slow down for the ball in flight… which gave the CB time to “catch-up” to him again.

    • Attyla the Hawk

      “I know a fair share of people disagreed, but I thought Leo was our biggest need and I’m glad that through their actions that Carroll and Schneider seemed to agree.”

      I definitely agreed on this point. I felt it would be the hardest position to adequately fill from a draft day perspective.

      As the draft unfolded, and great OL talent were sliding hard — I felt by pick 55 we were going defense with our pick. I figured we were hitting a pocket of DE quality (Clark, Harold, Owamagbe, Gregory) that would have been too attractive. When Sambrailo and Marpet left just ahead of us I was certain we’d go defense.

      One only has to look at the last two postseason losses (Atlanta, New England) to see how vital having that redundancy is. The lack of a third edge rusher doomed both those contests.

      I actually think it’s still a need of sorts. Avril and Bennett are the alpha dogs. But we have to figure by 2016, we’re going to have to have a successor in place. If Clark ends up being that, then we’re again at the ‘need third edge guy’ stage.

      I’m not saying we have to burn a day 1 or 2 pick on it. But from an age and cap space standpoint — we are still needing cheap DE help.

      I do hope Clark develops quickly into that situational role. Avril and Bennett are at their best when fresh. Their cap values means we have to litter their substitutions with cheaper rookie talent. No veteran option here. I think ideally, we’ll need to have at least one rookie contract in the 3 deep at DE. Possibly two if we can’t relieve cap space in the interior DL.

      Having a quality pass rush DE on a rookie deal is a huge cap value savings. That position is so valuable and can quickly dominate a cap model. Much like a shutdown corner or franchise QB.

      • Miles

        You’re right that the Seahawks will have to continue to add pass rushers every year. You can simply never have enough of them. The position can be a revolving door. Luckily, we have Avril and Bennett locked up for the next 4 some-odd years, so that’s nice. But we always need to be stacked with pass rushers.

        It is rare, however, to find solid, consistent pass rushers for cheap, both in terms of money and draft capital. There are few teams that have two pass rushers on the level of Bennett and Avril. The Seahawks could well have three with Clark.

        In order to keep churning pass rush talent, the Seahawks need to continue to address pass rushers with early draft picks and cap space. Hopefully, Bennett, Avril and Clark will become mainstays on the line for the next two to three years. Until then we could be set in terms of front-line talent. But we also need to prepare for life after Avril and Bennett, especially with the cap getting so tight and Bennett asking for a new contract.

        And if you factor in Bruce Irvin, that’s four high-level pass rushers we got stashed on our roster. And if Jordan Hill can stay healthy this year and be the force he was at the end of last year, this pass rush could be the best in the league quite frankly.

  6. arias

    This one is clearly aimed at you Steele1324. πŸ˜‰

    • Steele1324

      Aim it at Lance Zierlein. That is where the report came from.

      • arias

        What report?

        • Steele1324

          Specifically on the point of “getting caught from behind”, I mentioned that that was a (quoted) knock against him. Agree or disagree with Zierlein as you wish.

          Lockett is not Dorsett, but he is fast enough. I am more concerned about his size and ability to win when faced with bigger, stronger cornerbacks. In film of the Baylor game (www.draftbreakdown), there are plays that show this.

          But the bottom line is that Lockett is a Seahawk. It’s done, and they will do their best to utilize him.

          • John_s

            This article is about Frank clark not Lockett though.

            On a side, yes Lockett does get caught from behind but if he’s caught from behind on 30,40,50 yard catches then I’m fine with it. The same as I was ok with Tate routinely getting caught from behind

          • arias

            No wonder I was lost on what you could be talking about.

            I was referencing this article on Frank Clark and all the issues you had with his game in the comments section of the last blog post.

          • Donald

            I agree with you Steele.

            Lockett has talent and will make some good plays. The question is his durability, small hands that leads to drops (and fumbles), and the 3rd, 4th, 5th 6th round draft picks to get him. He is that much better than other returners we could have had for much less cost (Mario Alford in the 7th rd)? Who did we give up with those extra picks, or we make the trade and select Tevin Colemen instead.

            We will see.

            • Donald


              Meant to read ” Is he that much better….?” not “He is”.

              • Steele1324

                Donald, it is of course academic at this point. Sure they could have taken a different strategy, and it would be counterproductive to hash out the many alternatives. Listening to JSPC’s explanations afterwards, they acted aggressively and did exactly what they wanted to do.

                Time will be the judge.

              • Nichansen01

                Lockett really is that much better though. One of the best route runners in the draft, Seahawks had him their number 1 ranked receiver in the draft. Being tall and having big hands can be nice but Tyler Lockett has speed, elusiveness, and plays extremely toughly AND smartly. And that’s just his receiving skills. His returning skills are the most developed in this years draft, had success without great blocking for him and Kansas State.

            • GeoffU

              Locket has been incredibly durable in college, missed one game to injury in three years of starting. Hand size has little if any correlation to drops and fumbles. He was the best punt returner in college last year, and the best kick returner in 2012. Do you want the best or do you want to muddle through it for another year? Mario Alford has returned 3 punts for -13 yards. Kick return we were ok, punt return was a big fail.

              We certainly gave up a bit, and could’ve gotten one or two potential talents later on, but Lockett looks like a special talent to me–not just potential. We’ll see how it plays out.

              • xo 1

                Well put. Not sure how I feel about PRich and Lockett combination going forward, but Lockett is going to help the team improve far more this coming year than PRich did last year. The concerns raised – other than durability – are valid but won’t detract from his contributions. And who knows, if PRich comes back full strength, maybe Richardson and Lockett rival Hilton and Dorsett for the smurf-sized rockets. I keep coming back to Pete’s stressing Richardson’s speed to help understand the role Seattle anticipates Lockett playing.

  7. DC

    Really had fun listening to the live broadcast during the draft Rob. I always feel that a English accent adds legitimacy to anything spoken, ha! You brought so many players to our attention that I would have never heard of that I was not surprised by any of our picks for a change though I hadn’t heard of Tye Smith or Ryan Murphy.

    Very excited to see Clark get into the rotation.

    • Rob Staton

      Thanks DC

      • patmcfar8

        Wait, wait… you’re bloody English?! πŸ˜‰

        Amazing work this year, as always. Greatly appreciated.

        • Rob Staton

          I bloody am! πŸ™‚

  8. GeoffU

    Really pleased with this draft. Got two of our biggest needs, pass rush and receiver, and both look polished enough to contribute right away. Then we go two o-line in round 4 for our other need and right where the value was.

    As far as Clark, I just hope all the red flags are a thing of the past. If anybody can get him on the right track it’ll be Pete.

  9. Misfit74

    Love me some Frank Clark. This is a fine pick! Fantastic breakdown, Rob. These are they style that I can consume and learn easily – A practical look. Thanks for burning the midnight oil.

  10. David M2

    Just as excited about this pick as I was about the Bruce Irvin pick and the Russell Wilson pick back in 2012. At the time people told me to “chill the fuck out”, “your stupid, the guys 5′-10″ he’ll never be a starter in this league”, “Why are you so excited about Irvin, he’s a 1 trick pony that you reached on?”

    Well looking back at it now, I think all the doubters will understand in a year or two why I’m so excited about this draft as well. I was literally jumping out of my seat and running around in circles when the Hawks picked Russell Wilson. He was the one player in that draft I wanted more than any other. It was Bitonio last year and this year it was Frank Clark. Well done PC/JS. Looking forward to next years draft.

    Also, great work on this blog Rob. Wish I was hanging out with you guys here more than the last couple of years. It’s always great reading what you write. Would love it if you could get Terry Blount’s job at ESPN, oh man that would be a blessing.

    • bobbyk

      I am pleased with the draft, too. Normally, I am a guy who likes to collect picks but I do love me some Tyler Lockett. The only way this could have been better is if we could have somehow landed Michael Bennett in the late 5th or early 6th (or taken a flier on La’el Collins and for him to be proven innocent.

    • arias

      Couldn’t agree more. I really think Clark will be a beast.

      Speaking of Irvin I noticed Sessler on is reporting on the comments PCJS made about Irvin from Friday and how they want him in Seattle for the long run during Friday’s presser. It makes me wonder if their words were just PR because if they don’t pick up the option I’m left cynically thinking, yeah he has a home in Seattle for a long time until next year when someone offers him Von Miller guarantees.

      • hawkdawg

        He said they wanted to re-sign Carp, too. If Irvin gets a deal richer than the Hawks are willing to match, they will tip their hat to him and let him walk just as they did Carp..

        • arias

          Exactly the reasons for my cynicism when they said that. The Carp analogy was not a good one if they’re trying to reassure they really want him.

          • Matt

            We want to resign most all of our players, but financially it’s not possible. Been thinking that Irvin would be squeezed after we extended KJ and Avril late last season. It remains to be seen what will happen with Irvin, but it feels like this is his last year as a Hawk. IMO I’m guessing we could get at least a 4th round comp out of Irvin.

            • bigDhawk

              I’m thinking their plan is to let him ball out on his contract year, leave to get paid with ATL or JAX, switch KJ to his best position at SAM and anoint KPL the WILL in 2016.

              • Matt

                Agreed bigDhawk. We’ll add more to the LB core in the next draft to compete too.

              • arias

                I think that’s really risky strategy to depend on starting KPL at WILL when he’s had all of 5 games experience averaging 16 snaps a game and really hasn’t flashed anything yet.

              • Attyla the Hawk

                Entirely possible.

                I think we want to resign him for less than the option year over a few years. If he goes, we do have successors in place on the roster. KPL showed enough even in his brief stint that he’s going to be a player for us.

                And let’s be honest, if you’re needing to fill out a starting LB gig — you can do that in the 60-120 range of pretty much every draft. It’s not a heavily drafted position and our track record getting quality LBs deep is very very good.

                Irvin to me is not in a position where he has a lot of leverage on Seattle. If he resigns — that’s awesome. We can turn our gaze elsewhere. But I have no doubt that we’ll keep adding to the LB treadmill and will be in a solid position to move on from Irvin if it comes to that.

                I love Irvin, and expect he’ll have a breakout season. If he does — it’s entirely possible he prices himself off our roster just as Maxwell and Tate did. But then, that’s exactly the model of our roster (which is the same model for the Patriots and Ravens). Keep the guys you have to keep. Roll some of the guys you can’t for comp picks.

                Ultimately, it’s the sign of a good healthy roster that you have too many good players to keep. Seattle, with KPL last year and Glowinski this year — we’re drafting ahead of cap casualty need. That to me is incredibly important. It’s entirely possible that both Sweezy and Irvin can’t be resigned. If the market turns on us — we are right now today ready to reload. With players who will already be seasoned in the system for one or two years.

                Don’t be afraid of the unknown/unproven. To maintain excellence in a salary cap reality you simply must be comfortable with an expected measure of replacement with unknown quality. It doesn’t mean we don’t value those guys. Or won’t try to resign them. But if another team comes at them at 6-7m/yr — we have to acquiesce to that.

                • arias

                  All great points Attyla. It just sucks having to play on an even playing field as GB, NE, Balt, now. I guess it’s the price you pay for paying a franchise QB.

  11. yesh

    Can’t wait for Lockett tomorrow! I”m not a huge fan of comparisons since I think each player brings something unique to the table but I see TY Hilton with the potential for Antonio Brown.

    • Matt

      Both great players! Randall Cobb is who he reminds me of the most. If Lockett can be anywhere near those 3 guys we will have hit the jackpot!

    • bigDhawk

      Lockett doesn’t have Hilton’s top end speed, but he is every bit the route runner.

      • Old but Slow

        Watching clips of Lockett against several teams, he not only routes well, his deception is very good. Many times open by 10 yards. That is Largent-like, If I dare poke the hornets nest. The ability to convince the DB to go the wrong way is golden. Largent proved that you don’t need to be long, strong, or exceedingly fast to be a number one receiver. Lockett obviously gained a lot from his father, and is far ahead of his peers in finding ways to get open.

        I see him mainly as an answer to our special teams, but he may become a better receiving threat than any of us suspected.

        • Phil

          He sure was productive at KSU. He had something like 108 catches last year.

          * * * *

          Did anyone catch the Gamechangers TV episode with Michael Irvin and some of the receivers in the draft (including Lockett)? I found it interesting that Irvin was coaching the receivers to catch “3rd down and red zone” slants using their bodies, not their hands. He explained that it provides greater ball security than just using your hands. I’m sure some receivers would disagree with him, but it was an interesting point of view.

          • Volume12

            Phil, I didn’t catch that, but it brings up a point I’ve previously treid to discuss.

            You used to teach/coach guys when it comes to catching the ball ‘just don’t let the ball hit the ground.’ Obvious right?

            But now guys are taught to hands catch only by making a diamond formation with their hands. Not putting your hands together as the ball arrives, but rather putting your hands in the ‘diamond’ before and then bringign them up, so the momentum of the ball meshes with the momentum of your arms being swing up or out.

            When guys say ‘he body catches too much,’ it always makes me chucke.. I’m guilty of it too, because it seems so unnatural or awkward. It actually shows your willing to do whatever to make that grab, shield defenders, and thus, not afraid of contact or getting hit. As we all know, a lot of the times you have to ‘body catch’ or the defender will eitherknoc/jar the ball loose, lay a huge hit on thereceiver, and in ecspecially in double coverage and contested situation.

          • Attyla the Hawk

            No, that’s actually very true. There are many scenarios where allowing the ball to reach your body is the correct way to catch the ball.

            If you can gain superior position by footwork or by sheer physical strength, so that your body is between the pass and the CB — let it get to your body. By winning the position battle, the corner has to fight through your body to break up a pass, which is always going to draw a flag. And by letting the ball get into your body — it’s secure the moment the receiver makes contact. There is no ability for a corner to rake the hands apart or chop the arms to dislodge a ball.

            Where you see issues with that, is when the receiver hasn’t established clear position and CBs have an angle to reach around and tip balls away. Being able to correctly identify when to reach for the ball and when to allow it to get into your body is an art.

            I should add, that this is a situation that really applies even more for big physical WRs. It’s one of the critical ways that separate the value of a big WR as opposed to a smaller WR. Because bigger WRs are far more capable of winning and maintaining body position leverage. I’m not surprised at all Irvin would talk about that nuance to receiving — as he was elite at winning that leverage even if played correctly by a defender.

            Catching away from the body is necessary in many instances. But it is a common mistake that it’s the one gold standard for catching passes. Catching passes is a highly developed skill. Knowing how to approach each catch is so dynamic.

            • Volume12

              Well said. Much better than I could’ve explained it.

            • Phil

              The thing with Lockett is that he can make tough catches with his hands, so I don’t think the body catches are the problem that some analysts make them out to be.

  12. Trevor

    Great breakdown and scouting report Rob!

    This is exactly what I love about this site. You actually watch the tape and do the analysis unlike many others who just reprint what they heard some unnamed scout say about a player.

    If he keeps his nose clean, which I hope he does for him and his family, then I think he is a steal at 63 and will end up being a tremendous addition to our defense and the type of player that is just so hard to find.

  13. EldHawk

    Great work Rob. I looked at the Mock Draftable entries for Frank Clark and for Robert Quinn, to see if John_s had a point. He does, and Clark and Quinn will likely show as “comps” once Mock Draftables updates Clark’s data with his better Pro Day measurements. Haven’t looked at the Sparq numbers yet. All-in-all, a Great pick!

    • Rob Staton

      Interesting note on Quinn.

      • EldHawk

        Looking at larger DE types (265 to 270lbs) Clark pSparqs at 141.6, a bit above Quinn at 137.3, and just below Justin Houston at 141.7. Holy Comp!!

    • Ben

      One of the comps that Zach put out there on SPARQ for Clark was Ziggy Ansah. Looking at the results, that’s not a bad comparison athletically, the only real differences are Clarks better shuttle time and better vertical jump, and Ansah’s 2 inch height advantage. Outside of that, they’re the same weight, Ansah’s arms are longer, but not significantly, and Clark’s tape is much better.

      From an on-field perspective, I’m loving this pick more and more.

  14. smitty1547

    The kid is young, as a 12 I will embrace him until he gives me reason not do. Do not make my city and team look like were low class. Go out their and play hard, fast and smart and Seattle will embrace and love u.

  15. Brian

    Don’t forget Scruggs and Jessie Williams. If Williams stays healthy this D-line might be quite potent.

    • Matt

      Anything Scruggs and williams give next year will be gravy. They are not relied upon to contribute next season. The DL is potent without either one taking a snap next year. Rubin will impress us 12’s next season. He’s better than he’s been getting credit for. Dude is a great run stopper who will thrive in our deep rotation.

      • Volume12

        Completely agree about Rubin.

  16. Trevor

    Rob what do you think it says about our plans for Okung considering we did not draft a developmental Tackle?

    I think they either realize how hard it is to find a starting Left Tackle and plan to resign him or they have a lot of faith in the development of Gilliam.

    I tend to believe the first option and they are planning on resigning Okung and letting Sweezy go. I love Sweezy but it makes sense from a scarcity standpoint.

    • Rob Staton

      It’s hard to read although I did contemplate this briefly after the draft. Firstly, it’s very hard to find starting left tackles outside of the top-15 picks. So even if they’d taken a developmental tackle on day three, the chances of him replacing Okung were remote. Without a first round pick it’s very hard to address this need and plan ahead.

      Now they could let Okung walk and back themselves to find the replacement. There are a number of intriguing tackle prospects eligible for the 2016 draft. There’s also Nate Solder hitting free agency (a former Seattle target in 2011 I believe) and Matt Kalil (a former Carroll recruit). So there’s that to consider too.

      Ultimately it would make sense to re-sign Okung because those types of players are hard to find. I think we’re seeing though, with the decision on Irvin’s 5th year option and the fact they drafted a guy who could replace Sweezy in 2016 that they’re preparing to try and replace players on the cheap. If they let Irvin and Sweezy walk they might have the funds to keep Okung. I’m not sure we can read too much into what happened in this draft.

      Of course, they could always sign La’el Collins down the line…

      • Trevor

        Thanks for the insight I was just curious what you thought as we had discussed Okung briefly in the past. I just hope he stays healthy and gets back to his pro-bowl form. He just never looked right last year.

        I never thought about Kahil but would make sense with the connection to Carrol if he can bounce back from last year. I thought he was going to be a star coming out of USC.

        • arias

          And he really was just so awful last year I’d be absolutely dead set against any Kalil rekindling.

          • Trevor

            Funny because before free agency started I thought that because he was so bad last year we might hookup with our old trade partners Minn and pick him up for a 3rd rounder . Then we traded for Graham a much better option.

            • arias

              Are you serious? My personal opinion is that you should really glad that trade never materialized. I mean, the guy as a starting left tackle gave up 55 QB pressures last season in his 3rd year in the league.

              For reference Justin Britt who was fairly atrocious for most of the season in pass protection his first year going, gave up 49.

              • Trevor

                He played hurt last year and to be honest seemed like he was lost. He is very gifted and I bet he bounces back this year. He would be a perfect ZBS Left Tackle when he is on form.

                • arias

                  Really? I thought it was that he was never the same after off season surgery. I wish the best for him that it was just injury related and therefore a temporary issue. I hate to see a guy’s game degrade that much post surgery.

        • Rob Staton

          I think we’re all interested to see what La’el Collins does too.

          • Belgaron

            Were it not for Aaron Hernandez, someone would have drafted him. There may have even been a communication from the league not to tie him to the NFL at all in case he gets charged. Considering the negative PR hit that JS/PC had to fight through for Clark, they had zero interest in drafting him.

            But if he is exonerated, I’m hoping he does visits and doesn’t just sign with his hometown (Saints) or some other club. He’d be a long way from home in Seattle, but maybe he needs a change of scenery. Plus he’d be under no expectation to start immediately if everyone stays healthy. If he signed with Seattle, it would break the Internet.

            • CERyle34

              I think La’el would definitely start at LG or RT if he were picked up

              • Belgaron

                LG yes, especially if they are grooming him to move to LT if needed.

                RT is Britt’s to lose, I think everyone is expecting big improvement from him in Y2.

        • Trevor

          As for Collins JS should be camping out at the Baton Rouge Police station and if Collins is cleared then get that kid signed. He would be like getting our 1st rounder back and solve most of our issues on the OL. He could play LG this year and kick outside next year.

          An OL in 2016 like this would be young, cheap and incredibly athletic. You could keep them together for 3 years at a Cap hit of less than what we current pay OKung.

          LT Collins
          LG Poole
          C Soloki
          RG Glowinski
          RT Britt

          • arias

            I think JS would still have to get in line behind all the other GMs lined up there too.

        • Ho Lee Chit

          We have a legitimate shot at La’el Collins. Not only do we have a ready made opening for him at LG but he can earn an extra $186,000 if we repeat and win the Super Bowl. His agent is smart enough to know both facts. In a year he could take over for Okung which would further boost his free agency stock as a LT. If this happens the Seahawks will have won the off season and I will be ecstatic for the up coming season.

          • arias

            The Super Bowl bonus is not really an incentive he has any real control over attaining like he would a performance bonus. I’m not sure that by itself it makes Seattle that much more attractive than the half dozen teams with a legit shot to win it all that will be courting him out the gate if he is cleared.

            • Matt

              I think a more open spot for Collins to step into and start is what’s most attractive to him. He could win a spot here but there’s a lot of competition. The money is made in the second contract for rookies who aren’t first round picks. UDFA’s are only contracted for 3 years before becoming a restricted FA. Then ideally they can get a big second contact. If Collins success as a starter for 3+ seasons he’ll be set up for a big pay day. I’d love to get Collins just don’t think it’s very realistic.

              • arias

                I agree with your analysis as that’s what I’ve learned too reading far and wide about his free agent options.

            • Phil

              As we have discussed, the income tax players pay in other states gives the Seahawks a 5 – 10 per cent advantage when comparing offers.

              I keep wondering if a time will come when the cap gets adjusted for teams playing in states without income taxes. I don’t think it will happen.

    • bobbyk

      Bailey has actually shown more potential at LT than LG, imo. That is weird, but it’s what I have casually observed watching the games he’s been in. I do think Sweezy is about to play his final season with the Seahawks. I like him, but there’s only so much money to go around and guys like Wilson and Wagner are core players, while Sweezy isn’t in comparison to either of those guys.

      • arias

        That would be really too bad because it’s really not efficient for the team to to groom a raw player that had never played offensive line in his life, with all the growing pains to go along with that, to let him walk just as he finally figures it out.

        I’m not saying they’ll necessarily be able to afford him, but letting him walk really highlights how taking on guys with steep learning curves really doesn’t pay dividends. He was uniformly atrocious his rookie year. 2nd season during SB run he misses 10 games with injury and even when he was on the field he was almost always terrible, and finally this past season he showed some consistency for the first time in his run blocking even if his pass blocking still sucked balls. Assuming he hasn’t reached his peak yet that means just as he’s developed to the level that we should be expecting from guards by their 2nd year, he walks. What a waste of a couple development years on a prospect that didn’t stay.

        • Jon

          Sweezey never missed games with injury. Giacomini and Okung did.

          • arias

            He missed 10 games of time, but I got the year wrong, it was his rookie year not the SB season. For whatever reason McQuistan got all the snaps at RG in 2012 from games 5-13.

            If it wasn’t from injury I don’t know what it was from since he didn’t play a snap during that stretch and was plugged in as a starter from game 14 on till the NFC division playoff loss to Atlanta. He was terrible during that stretch but probably McQuistan was worse so the team didn’t have much of a choice.

            • Jon

              That was not from injury was it? I believe he started the first game or two and got benched. Then came back a few games before the playoffs.

              • arias

                It would have had to be from injury, else he would have gotten at least a few snaps each game.

                • AlaskaHawk

                  I thought they used two guards that year. Sweazy took time to train properly. Wasn’t the games he missed in early to mid season?

                  • arias

                    Could be. I just thought it’s weird that he plays 3 snaps in game 4 then zero snaps in the next 10 games until he gets half the snaps in game 14, a third of the snaps in game 15, and almost every snap after that.

                    I assumed he would be given some snaps if they were trying to ease him into the role over that 10 game absence so figured it had to be an injury. When he got back they appeared to slowly bring him up to speed.

                  • Seahawk80

                    It is too bad there isn’t a place where we could access all the information we are talking about rather then trying to remember.

                    Benched 3 games rookie year started 5
                    He has missed one game due to concussion his second year sustained during Giants game. Started 18 games.
                    3rd year Started 19 games.

                  • arias

                    PFF lists him as playing 8 reg season games and two playoff games while starting 5 of those, but missing 8 games altogether without a snap.

                  • Seahawk80

                    No it says he played in 15 of 18 games and started 5 of those

                  • AlaskaHawk

                    I was totally suprised they even tried to play him the first year. He looked really raw. Defensive linemen were running by him and blowing up the QB. Eventually he got better. The important thing is that Sweezy was starting by the end of the season.

                  • arias

                    Seahawk80, you linked PFR where I cited PFF. What I’m doing is citing the discrepancy.

          • bobbyk

            He has missed a game.

            • Matt

              Losing Sweezy wouldn’t be a complete loss, as we’d likely get a comp pick out of him-like carpenter. A comp pick higher than the 7th round choice that he was.

              • arias

                Yeah but the development time on rookies is where we’re paying the real price. We get a higher-than-7th pick as comp sure, but we still lose out on a guy we suffered two years of below average play to get to the point of competency. That’s not a good ROI, and I think would make the team far more skeptical about such deep raw projects in the future, at least I hope.

                • Matt

                  I get your point arias, but have to disagree. Gaining draft capitol for a successful project who has given us some good play is not a loss. Especially gaining a 4th round comp from a 7th round project. This is a team that has cut 4th rounders during training camp. I view that as trading a 7th rounder for a 4th rounder 5 years down the road. In the meantime Sweezy has been a nice player for us. Our top notch coaching makes this a reality. Win, win, win forever.

                  • arias

                    A 4th round comp!?!?!

                    Well yeah I think that would be fantastic compensation but that’s what we got for Golden Tate. What makes you think Sweezy will come anywhere close to fetching a comp of equal value to Tate?

                    If he signs elsewhere next year for 3-4 mil APY, that’s a 6th round comp, maybe a 5th if we’re extremely lucky and he plays lights out and makes the pro bowl for his new team.

                  • Attyla the Hawk

                    That sounds about right on the comp pick range.


                    Andy Levitre (7.8m age 28)


                    Roger Saffold (6.3m age 26)
                    Zane Beadles (6.0m age 28)
                    Jon Asamoah (4.5m age 26)


                    Mike Iupati (8.0m age 27)
                    Orlando Franklin (7.1m age 27)
                    Clint Boling (5.2m age 25)
                    James Carpenter (4.7m age 26)

                    I’d expect Sweezy to slot in the 6.4 to 7.3m range per year at age 26 (in 2016). The top values for OG UFA talents have gone to guys that are young with a lot of production ahead of them. Sweezy is definitely the caliber of Franklin and better than Beadles, Boling and Saffold.

                    The cutoff for 4th to 5th round is expected to hit somewhere in the 6.8 or so range next year. There is every likelihood that Sweezy exceeds that figure. His immediate competition will likely be Alex Boone in SF for top dollar amongst OGs.

                    Honestly, looking at UFA contracts at OG in the last two years — I’m very doubtful we can keep Sweezy. He’s going to command an awful lot as is. If he has a good year — he’s going to get paid. A lot more than Carpenter this year.

                  • arias

                    whoa, as it stands right now Attyla I really can’t see how you’re even comparing Sweezy to Orlando Franklin. Franklin is one of the elite guards in the league. Sweezy is not. Franklin has an all around game and is as outstanding in pass protection as he is a run blocker. Sweezy’s pass pro was an utter liability last season, he was actually somewhat better in pass pro in 2013 but he’s still very much a work in progress. He’s nowhere near being in Franklin’s class. It’s hard to see where you’re coming from on that comp.

                    Sure, it’s possible Sweezy could get to Franklin’s level one, but as his skills stand right now I think you’re way overslotting him. Beadles and Saffold are also better in pass pro than Sweezy though they’re not near as stout against the run. But they serve as better comps as guys that excel in one dimension of their game with flaws on the other.

                    But I’d agree if Sweezy starts providing Franklin-caliber guard play he’d no doubt be unaffordable. It wouldn’t be a mystery he’d be walking. But right now I see him as a 3-4 mil player which should net a 6th round pick and that’s what I think Schneider would target his salary at if he could re-sign him today.

      • williambryan

        I agree on Bailey. Dave Boling of the news tribune, the local media’s top Oline reviewer, has been on Bailey since the first rookie minicamp he was a part of. I like Bailey a lot and could see him taking over for Okung IF a majority of these draft picks pan out. If they don’t then the team would be almost handcuffed to giving Okung whatever he wants (I don’t mind this because I think Okung is easily a top 10 tackle, if not top 5)

  17. Trevor

    I know we don’t talk about other teams much but I thought the Ravens had the best draft of any team and seem to be going for many high SPARQ guys as well late.

    Their picks
    Max Willams
    Zadarius Smith
    Carl Davis
    Buck Allen
    Trey Walker
    Nick Boyle
    Darren Waller
    Robert Myers

    That is a quality group and why Ozzie Newsome is a top 3 player personell guy year after year.

    • Rob Staton

      It’s certainly a good crop.

    • bigDhawk

      Do we really have to be reminded of where Waller didn’t go?

      • Trevor

        I liked him to but he went in the 6th round so a lot of teams felt the same about him as the Hawks. Has to be a character or lack of passion for the game issue.

        • Nichansen01

          He’s tall and fast but that’s about it. I prefer Chris Matthews over Waller.

      • AlaskaHawk

        DHawk, If it makes you feel better, there is a chance Waller won’t make the starting team and will be available to the Seahwaks.

    • arias

      I’m always so impressed with the Ravens drafts. Especially how they’re able to pick mid to late round studs on the DL seemingly year after year, an area that the Seahawks have had a distinct lack of success in doing such that they’ve had to go out and buy their solutions to compensate.

      • bigDhawk

        They tend to pick a lot of names popular in the mainstream draft media, making them look smart. Not that they aren’t. Just saying. Speaking of late round DT studs, we landed Tory Slater as a UDFA, which I see as our best UDFA pickup. The dude could turn out to a real gem.

        • arias

          Oooh. Yeah I like that UDFA pickup too. Definitely a huge step up from Jackson Jeffcoat.

        • Mo Fafflebap

          ^^^ this ^^^
          The national media tend to fall over themselves praising Ozzie Newsome because they are in essence patting themselves on the back. Arthur Brown, anyone? Newsome is good, obviously, but I prefer to leave the echo chamber and look to Schneider. His picks are still greeted with befuddlement, but the transition from mocking dismissal to scared silence in most Seahawks draft assessments has been one of the highlights of our recent rise to prominence.

          • arias

            I don’t know because I see a lot of the praising by the national media of Schneider these days too. Don’t get me wrong, there’s no one I’d rather have in charge of the Seahawks drafts. I’m just expressing my envy at Baltimore’s mid to late round DL drafting success which has been the Achilles heel of Schneider’s drafting record thus far and it’s just human nature to always want what you can’t have.

            Though I’m hopeful that that Jordan Hill, and now Frank Clark will start to turn around that narrative so I’ll no longer need to seek outside the team I root for to find nirvana. πŸ™‚

    • rowdy

      Funny how all the players were talked about on here a good amount

      • Matt

        Yep Rob and our knowledgeable community covered a ton of players on here. It’s been fun! I’m sure I’m not alone saying that I felt more in tune with this draft than any other that I’ve followed the last 20+ years. It’s a testament to Rob and all of us!

        • arias

          They do a good job drafting on their o-line too, especially on the interior. Loved their pick of the math genius John Urschel last year, he’s a gamer with a long career ahead in both football and academia. Did Rob ever mention him last year during all the analysis of potential offensive line picks? I don’t recall him bandied about here.

          • Attyla the Hawk

            Yeah, Urschel was discussed here a good amount.

            I know I posted about him a fair bit. My 5th/6th round predictions for OL went Zach Fulton/John Urschel in that order of preference. Although I didn’t see either as a good fit for our profile and noted that I didn’t think we’d rate them highly. To me they were just very good football players who I expected to make a year 1 impact from that draft range.

            I think they benefited from being drafted elsewhere rather than here.

            • Miles

              Speaking of diamond in the rough receivers, does anyone know why McBride slid all the way to the 7th? Haven’t heard a convincing explanation yet. On NFL Network they were speculating that teams did not like his personality.

  18. Pugs

    Hey Rob, I had a question about CB Tye Smith I kept hearing yesterday about how skinny and thin he is. I watched his combine workout on and I didn’t see a guy who was rail thin. JS was jacked up talking about Smith’s potential. Are people confusing Smith with another prospect? Thanks for all the great work you do!

    • Rob Staton

      In pads he did look quite skinny:

      • Jon

        I think that Picture is a strange angle/lens. He is 6′ 195 according to what I see. That picture looks like myself in pads playing at 6′ 165 in high school.

      • Seahawk80

        Funny Richard Sherman is 6’3″ 195. Tye Smith is 3 inches shorter, 6’0″ and 195.

        • Rob Staton

          I think people probably called Sherman skinny too. To be honest all of Seattle’s recent corners are slim. Maxwell, Lane, Simon.

          • Seahawk80

            It is all about wing span and attitude with our corners. well that and willingness to tackle/Hit Richard Sherman’s draft analysis was so much worse then his.

    • rowdy

      There was also a lot of talk about him not being a good tackler but In his highlights he had a lot of big hit

    • Phil

      I wonder how Tye Smith performed against Tre McBride in their face-to-face meetings? Towson State plays William & Mary every season.

  19. Steele1324

    Rob, as usual, a thorough and informative analysis. I am sure your Lockett piece will be as well. My having strong views on them does not mean I do not also appreciate other perspectives.

    As if often the case, it is after a draft is over, and the FO finally speaks out about their thinking, that their strategies behind the draft and each pick are made a bit more clear. How they feel about the existing roster also becomes more evident.

    I am among the minority that would have preferred seeing different choices at the top. Clark’s off-field is hard to stomach. I am not the only Seahawks fan thinking long and hard about it. On-field, I prefer a different kind of edge player, just as I would have preferred a different kind of receiver than Lockett. We may agree or disagree, but they have spoken, and it is done.

    I leave it at that.

    I hope JSPC makes the best of it. The bitterness of the Super Bowl is still strong. Winning this offseason is step one towards dispelling it.

    • Ho Lee Chit

      Tyler Lockett would have beaten Butler to the ball at the 1 yard line,.

      • hawkdawg

        Maybe. But I’d prefer Jimmy Graham in that role…

      • Phil

        Interesting that on the Gamechangers TV episode that I previously mentioned, Michael Irvin placed most of the blame on Kearse for not forcing his defender into Butler. Kearse was passive at the LOS and Irvin said he was expected to break in a way that caused his defender to pick Butler leaving Lockette to make the grab. Hope this makes sense.

    • Ben

      What kind of edge player are you thinking of? More the Cliff Avril kind of thing? There was really only one of those in this draft, and Beasley went off the board at pick 8. I guess Danielle Hunter could be that kind of guy, but his tape is frankly awful.

      I agree about Lockett. Austin Hill might provide that kind of receiver though, and if he does that’d be the best we could ever hope for.

      • Steele1324

        Ben, something closer to Avril or Irvin. This draft was not great for that kind of player.

        I am interested in Obum Gwacham, who is closer to a pure LEO. PC is very enthusiastic about him, and said they will gradually develop him.

        • Volume12

          Vic Beasley isn’t anywhere near Cliff Avril. Beasley will get abused in the run game.

          Funny that Dan Quinn didn’t like Lynden Trail at Florida because of his practice habits and on field motor. Now he takes a guy in Beasley who quits and takes numerous plays off.

          It will be awhile before Beasley is anything like Bruce. If Atlanta had a couple more pass rushers, then yeah, but to put the brunt of pressures on Beasley’s shoulders could backfire big time.

          I agree with Steele. This was not a good draft for LEOs.

          • Drew

            Beasley put on 20 lbs of muscle since he left Clemson. I don’t think he’ll get abused, he’ll struggle some, but he needs to learn how to anchor and the extra weight and his ridiculous new strength (35 reps of 225lbs) will help

          • Rob Staton

            I disagree on Beasley Volume 12. I thought he was a relentless, terrific pass rusher. I also think he’s more akin to Bruce Irvin and that type of role instead of Avril.

            • Miles

              Rob, what would you say to Todd McShay, who explained on the ESPN broadcast of the draft that pure speed is irrelevant when it comes to pass rushers? Agree/Disagree?

              • Steele1324

                McShay is oversimplifying. Of course speed is relevant. A pass rusher needs everything. Perhaps his statement was made in reference to Kikaha, one of his favorite pass rushers in this draft. Kikaha is not measurable-fast.

              • Rob Staton

                It’s not irrelevant but it can’t be exclusive if you want to succeed. Speed to power, hand technique, having a repertoire and being able to attack and counter are all vital. If you can do all those things, disengage, bull rush and win with speed — you have a chance to be great.

        • Phil

          Has PC said anything about moving Obum back to receiver?

  20. Nathan

    Is Doug Baldwin a chance to be a cap casualty after this year?

    5.6 mil cap hit

    • Rob Staton


    • Cameron

      For that price they’ll gladly keep him around and bag a mid round comp pick if he signs elsewhere after 2016

      • Matt

        Like or not ADB is the leader of our WR core. Lockett is going to come in and battle for time. Can’t wait til training camp. I miss the real rob report too. Thought I’d throw that out there. Gave us an inside look at some off season and of course regular season stuff.

    • Attyla the Hawk

      I’d say no. He is a very quality receiver. Not a #1. But he’s not getting #1 money at 5.6m.

      Value is in range, if maybe a bit below market value. I’m sure Baldwin has much greater success on a team that passes more.

      Baldwin is just very versatile. Can play outside or slot with equal efficiency. He’s also very much a Seahawk kind of player. You want to keep that kind of quality in your locker room.

  21. Ross

    I keep trying to make myself hate this pick, but then I remember that I’ve been rooting for a bunch of Seahawks who have had legal problems in their pasts, including domestic violence, that Frank Clark is only a year older than me, and that a guy who was accused of sexually assaulting someone but wasn’t charged because neither the police or university decided to properly investigate the incident went first overall and people think that’s fantastic.

    Frank Clark is a football player. I’m rooting for him as a Seattle Seahawks fan until he does something as a Seattle Seahawk that gives me a reason not to. Same for every other player on the team.

    • Matt

      Great point about Winston. His past is more checkered than Clark’s. Imo Yet Winston is a golden boy and guys like Clark are vilified…understandably so. Life doesn’t add up sometimes. Rape is far worse than DV.

    • Attyla the Hawk

      I fully expect that by the time training camp starts, and we start seeing him in action, we’ll rarely revisit the DV issue with Clark. Probably the only time it would command attention would be if he has another incident. In which case I’d fully expect Seattle to cut him quickly.

      I don’t see much value in continuing to frame him in that manner. Mainly because I believe it’s inevitable that narrative has a shelf life that will expire as soon as football starts up. There will undoubtedly be some fans who just won’t let the issue die. But the continued criticism will pretty much just fall on deaf ears once there is the distraction of real football to consume.

      For me, this issue is done. He’s a Seahawk now. I don’t presume to know more about the circumstances of the incident than Schneider. I neither believe it absolves Clark of what he did, nor do I really know the details of what he did to a degree of certainty that I can pass judgement. But I do think it’s pretty clear — both in the selection of Clark and the pursuit of Greg Hardy — that our team is not as intolerant of DV as it’s been painted or that some fans might expect.

      I have seen DV personally and it’s ugly. It’s not only a man on woman thing. And definitely in my personal experience as a youth the mandatory arrest structure in place, while I fully agree with it, can very frequently overshoot the mark in the name of ensuring safety. These incidents are not even frequently cut and dried. It’s a tough situation to accurately resolve even by professionals.

  22. HawkRev

    I know it is way too early to think of a 53 man roster, but before I start getting all excited about these draft picks I decided to start playing around with all the guys on the roster at It was painful getting down to 53… Even when I put some guys on IR. I’m sure I’m way off, and there is still more free agency, but just curious who you guys think will make it “for sure.”

    Here is my super wrong list:

    Jeanpierre, Lemuel C
    Lewis, Patrick C
    Blackmon, Will CB
    Sherman, Richard CB
    Smith, Tye CB
    Williams, Cary CB
    Avril, Cliff DE
    Bennett, Michael DE
    Clark, Frank DE
    Dobbs, Demarcus DE
    Marsh, Cassius DE
    Scruggs, Greg DE
    Hill, Jordan DT
    McDaniel, Tony DT
    Mebane, Brandon DT
    Rubin, Ahtyba DT
    Williams, Jesse DT
    Coleman, Derrick FB
    Bailey, Dion FS
    Thomas, Earl FS
    Bailey, Alvin G
    Glowinski, Mark G
    Sweezy, J.R. G
    Poole, Terry G
    Hauschka, Steven K
    Gresham, Clint LS
    Coyle, Brock MLB
    Wagner, Bobby MLB
    Irvin, Bruce OLB
    Morgan, Mike OLB
    Pierre-Louis, Kevin LB
    Wright, K.J. OLB
    Ryan, Jon P
    Daniels, B.J. QB
    Wilson, Russell QB
    Lynch, Marshawn RB
    Michael, Christine RB
    Turbin, Robert RB
    Chancellor, Kam SS
    Murphy, Ryan SS
    Shead, DeShawn SS
    Britt, Justin T
    Gilliam, Garry T
    Okung, Russell T
    Graham, Jimmy TE
    McCoy, Anthony TE
    Willson, Luke TE
    Baldwin, Doug WR
    Kearse, Jermaine WR
    Lockett, Tyler WR
    Lockette, Ricardo WR
    Matthews, Chris WR
    Norwood, Kevin WR

    Jeremy lane
    Tharold Simon
    Paul Richardson

    • EranUngar

      11 DL players and only 4CBs ?

      • Volume12

        It’s a pretty good list honestly.

        But, I’m with Eran. It will be one of Scruggs, ‘Monstar,’ and Dobbs. Not all 3. They’ll carry 1 more CB. Probably only 8 O-lineman with the versatility they now have, and Helfet’s STs ability may be more valuable than McCoy.

        I see what you did now. Compensated for the 3 guys on IR right?

        When ever I take a stab at predicting the 53 man roster, I actually go like 55-56 guys, because you have to factor in 1 or guys going on the PUP.

        However, like I mentioned above, good job.

        • Miles

          I think that if Jesse Williams can stay healthy, he will be the one that cracks the roster. He is really our only pure run-stuffer and we have no one else like him. Although as Sealver Siliga showed us it’s really not too hard to find big ol’ anchors on the D-Line.

    • Steele1324

      Interesting, HawkRev. You see McCoy ahead of Helfet, and Doug McNeil, Austin Hill, Ross Apo not making the cut. I think McNeil has a shot. Is Lockette so important to ST that he is safe?

      • HawkRev

        I kept lockette because of special teams yes, but mostly because I think it takes awhile to get integrated into the Seahawks system, so it will be hard for the new guys. If I were king I wouldn’t keep lockette, but luckily for Seahawks fans I am not in charge.

  23. therick05

    Rob, do you think that signing La’el Collins is a good idea? He will cost more than others UDFAs and we dont how much money he wants, but he is a 1st round talent and he would start at left guard from week 1 (assuming he is released by the police).

    • therick05

      Don’t know how*

    • Drew

      The cost for La’el Collins will be the same as all UDFAs, contracts are structured for rookies, and it’s a 3 year contract. Only difference is the singing bonus which each team is only slotted a certain amount. Right now he has not been arrested or is a suspect, he is just being questioned. But being that it was his ex-gf that they broke up with 8 months ago and she was roughly 8 months pregnant….who knows.

      • hawkfaninMT

        What is the signing bonus amount allowed? Have the Hawks used all of theirs? Have most other teams?

        Curious about this because I kinda feel like the Hawks maybe took a softer stance on OL in the tail end of the draft/UDFA so they could point to lack of a starter at LG as benefit to Collins if they were to pursue him

    • Rob Staton

      If he’s cleared, it’d be a terrific signing.

      • Miles

        Until Collins is cleared I don’t even want to consider signing him. He needs to figure his stuff out first and foremost and that should be the only thing that matters. What’s happening with his ex-girlfriend is a major tragedy.

        • Rob Staton

          The latest is he’s still not a suspect. I’m not sure how that differs from being officially cleared. Clarity is needed I think.

  24. Matt

    Clark’s ability to read and react on the fly is impressive. He doesn’t have much of a pass rush repertoire but finding and getting to the ball is a great strength of his that really stands out. The athleticism and strength are obvious and he plays to his high test scores. He simply wrecks havoc on the opposition!

    Is it just me or has Marsh become somewhat of an after thought? He showed some flashes before landing on the IR last year. This time last year we were hoping marsh hill Jesse and Scruggs could give us something. Other than hill none of those guys are really counted on going into 2015. If they impress great! If not we are just fine. Man our DL is stacked!

    • Belgaron

      Clark seems like the kind of guy that will really benefit from all the weapons he’ll have next to him. He should really shine in this system with all the guys they’ve brought in.

      I think they are still high on Marsh and Jesse Williams, they’ll get a full shot in camp to make the team as contributors.

  25. Old but Slow

    I posted this in the previous thread, in case you missed it. One of our UDFA is Kam Chancellor’s half brother and plays the same position: Keenan Lambert from Norfolk State.

    • Steele1324

      That is good to know, OldbSlow.

      What is really intriguing, then, is that Ryan Murphy is also a Kam Chancellor-like safety. Lambert makes it two. There could be a lot of bam bamming going on soon.

      • j

        Murphy is a bit light to mimic Kam – 6’0 200 lbs. Good size, but not Kam.

        • Steele1324

          Carroll said in the press conference that when they looked at Murphy, they noticed he was effective playing close to the line like Kam Chancellor, and were intrigued by his versatility.

        • Coug1990

          I have seen Murphy listed as either 6’1″ or 6’3″ and weighing 214lbs.

          • purpleneer

            He measured 6005

    • Belgaron

      Yeah, this reminded me of the Mariners bringing in Griffeys but maybe he’s good on special teams. Certainly a nice gesture to Kam.

  26. Jeff M.

    A look back at FO’s advanced projections for our top-two picks (both use college production and combine testing to rate prospects as well as projected draft position to predict pro results).

    Frank Clark’s SackSEER rating is 64.7% (this should be interpreted as he’s better than 64.7% of drafted prospects in the database) with no real weak points (he’s average to above average in all of their categories that they’ve found predictive: combine explosion index, college sack rate, college pass defensed rate, and 3-cone drill–weakest in college sacks, but that’s pulled down by time missed due to suspension).

    Their projection, however, had him as a UDFA due to the off-field issues, and so only predicted 5 sacks over his first five years in the league (most guys with his draft projection aren’t even making a team, and draft position does most of the work in predicting outcomes here). If we adjust him to being a late-2nd, his projection would have to fall in between Danielle Hunter’s 20.1 sacks (2nd round projection with 46.2% rating) and Preston Smith’s 22.3 (1st-2nd round projection with 75.2% rating). So let’s give him a projected 21 sacks over his first 5 years, which puts his expected outcome right between Dante Fowler and Shane Ray (both have worse ratings but 1st round projections) as the 7th most productive edge rusher in the class (possibly 6th if we push the similarly-rated Eli Harold below him due to draft position).

    Tyler Lockett’s Playmaker Rating is one of the highest in the class at 80.7% (same interpretation). I don’t have the breakdown of the component predictors here to see how they arrive at it, but they specifically mention that he has massive college production over both his Junior and Senior years (there’s a big penalty for staying in college rather than coming out early, so he needed to really ace all the other parts of their model to come out this high).

    Since they correctly had him projected for 2nd-3rd round, we don’t need to adjust their projection of his pro production (although unfortunately they don’t explain in the article exactly what outcome they’re projecting…), which has him 9th in the class, right behind DGB, White, and Parker (all of whom are lower-rated but projected to go early in the draft). It doesn’t account at all for special teams value, either, so maybe bump him over those three non-contributors to #6 behind Agholor.

    So at least those advanced statistical projections have us grabbing top-10/borderline top-5 in their class guys at two premium positions with a 2nd and 3rd round pick.

  27. plyka

    I love this football player. He looks to be an incredible talent. For a player of such athletic ability, he has a motor too. Typically highly athletic players aren’t high motor players. This player is a great pick.

    The only reason I’m not too high on the Hawks draft was their second pick. Giving up a 4th, 5th and 6th rounder so they could get their hands on Paul Richardson, err Tyler Lockett, another midget WRs, when it’s obvious they needed that Kelvin Benjamin type at WR. How many diminutive WRs does this team need? And not only to use your 3rd round pick, but also a 4th, 5th and 6th –that just ruined the draft for me. If anything the Frank Clark pick was so valuable, it makes the Lockett mistake hurt less.

    • Nichansen01

      I feel that Pual relied purely on his speed to get open in college, whereas Tyler was more elusive and relied on fakes and jukes. Also, Lockett caught the ball in traffic better.

      • Miles

        Plyka, how many tall, dominating receivers are there? There is only one Kelvin Benjamin every year or every two years. The Seahawks would love to have a guy like that, but it’s hard to see them getting him because he’s a first-round type player. If the Seahawks wanted, they could have grabbed Jaelen Strong, but then you’re just drafting a big receiver just to have one. Strong is not a special player. And I don’t want the Seahawks to go grab a receiver early just because he checks the box of ‘Big.’ I want them to find players with special qualities. Lockett seems to have some special qualities and he can contribute right away. It’s hard for me to knock that pick.

        I understand we gave up a lot to have him. It was a lot. But one way to look at it is that there’s only so many roster spots to fill. We don’t need 11 picks. We could have gotten a nice player in the 4th but in the 4th 5th and 6th you’re taking a chance no matter who you take. Getting Lockett in the third, we almost know that at the very least we’re getting a good return man and a capable receiver with a ceiling up there with T.Y. Hilton or maybe Antonio Brown!

    • arias

      But make no mistake plyka, if there was a “Kelvin Benjamin type” of receiver available in the 3rd round I have no doubt they would have taken him. It just wasn’t possible to find a 6’5″ first round stud like Benjamin in this draft and especially not in the 3rd round. The only receiver that met that prototype was DGB and as expected he was long gone by the 3rd round.

  28. Volume12

    Rob, love the breakdown on Frank Clark. You know how big of a fan I am of this dude and I 100% agree with your analysis on him. Really like the emphasis on ‘splash plays.’ That’s what’s it all about as a pass rusher.Clark is not only an athletic freak, but dude is a physical freak. His body at the combine rivaled that of Odighizuwa’s.

    Can’t wait for the Tyler Lockett breakdown. If I umderstood it correctly, PFF had Lockett as the no 2 WR behind Amari Cooper this year.

    And I LOVE this analogy of Lockett’s game. ‘Tyler Lockett’s route running is so sharp, he draws blood.’ LOL.

    • arias

      Totally! That quote from Jacson on Lockett is really boss.

      • Volume12

        Isn’t it though? I thought that summed Lockett up pretty damn well when I first saw that analogy, quote, whatever you want to call it.

        • Volume12

          Loved it. Glad someone else liked that from Jacson as well.

  29. Clayton

    JS mentioned in the Day 2 press conference that there was a huge drop off in talent in pass rushers after Frank Clark. And… Eli Harold was still on the board when Seattle picked Clark. Just wondering if anyone also felt that Clark was superior to Harold. Also JS mentioned that they got 2 of the 3 that they wanted in the draft and I was wondering if anyone has a good idea of who got away from them?

    • arias

      I don’t think there’s any question Clark is superior to Harold. Harold dropped that far for good reasons. He definitely was not seahawky in any respect because he took plays off.

      Harold is like a cipher no team wanted to spend a high pick to risk trying to crack. He was hard to figure out because he’s so up and down from play to play and you don’t know how a guy with so many physical tools could be so ineffective on some plays. Dude ran a 4.6 but would rarely use his speed to get around the edge. He’d flash hand fighting skills yet not have the aptitude to deploy the most effective moves in his arsenal on a consistent basis. He’s a good bull rusher but would stupidly run straight into the left tackle and not try to get around him on an insanely stupid number of plays.

      He’s also a pretty terrible tackler, seems to miss a lot thought that’s something that can get cleaned up if he devotes himself to it.

      Oh, and Harold is much worse against the run than Clark.

      No doubt Clark is better.

      • Volume12

        Arias, you described Harold’s faults to a tee my man. Nice. I’d have to agree on everything. Plus Clark offers a tremendous amount of versatility compared to Eli Harold.

        If I had to guess as to who that 3rd player was they couldn’t leave the draft without, Oklahoma OL Daryl Williams. No coincidence he went a pick or two later IMO.

        • arias

          Yeah Clark is much more versatile. Harold wasn’t a player I wanted to see them draft for all his faults, so I was actually quite happy to watch the niners take him. They’ll need lots of luck to get the most out of him. They should have their hands full figuring out both him and Armstead.

          Yeah I agree with you on Williams. PC seemed really bummed that he was the prize that got away. He has all the signature road grading attributes against the run that we’ve come to expect. Since he spent all his time in college playing right tackle it makes me wonder if they planned to keep him there while sliding Brit inside. If that was Cable’s plan for him it appears pretty much scuttled now since the guys we got project more on the inside.

    • GeoffU

      Well, it’s obvious Lockett was one of the two. It seems safe to assume Frank Clark was #2, but that’s not a given. They may have coveted Morse or DGB, but when they were picked so early they really had no shot. So someone else could’ve been #2, like Tye Smith or one of the guards.

      It it wasn’t someone high in the 2nd like DGB, I suspect it may have been a running back. I’m really leaning towards Mike Davis as the guy they missed out on, snatched up a few picks earlier by those jerk 49ers.

  30. EranUngar

    Morals aside, Clark is a very unique specimen indeed.

    After watching every tape I could find since Saturday I must admit that I am in awe regarding this guy. IMO he is a boom or boomer kind of a pick.

    The common prototype for edge rushers is speedy 250-260 pound guys. This guy packs Irvin kind of speed with an extra 25 pounds of brute force. At 6-3 he weight is low to allow him to keep his position when setting the edge and it shows. His long arms negate any drawbacks due to his shorter size. This guy can and will blow TE’s on the strong side and will not be easily moved by Tackles. His strength appears to be distributed between his lower body explosive force (38.5 vert. and 118 broad jumps) and his evidently strong arms that jump of the tape with the ease he seems to disengage or shade blockers.

    He is not polished. He is not fluid or smooth. He is brute force and determination. He doesn’t rack up the sacks but you can hardly see a play were he is physically stopped by a blocker for long from doing what he wants to do. Pass rushers, like tackles or TE/WR rarely produce eye opening stats in their first year in the NFL. Whatever they bring to table, NFL offensive linemen had seen and are ready for it.

    However, he will join the likes of Avril and Bennett. Each is a very unique savvy player at this role. If he picks up some of what they have to teach and show him he could develop into a major force for this team for years to come.

    If you remember Irvin’s first year, he was ok rushing the QB as a complementary chess piece for Clem. He was however abused in the run game. I can see Clark pressing the pocket and helping Avril, Bennett and Hill to be more effective getting to the QB. He will not be a liability if teams decide to run the ball. That’s not bad for a first year talent.

    So morals aside, Clark is a great pick.

    • arias

      Thanks Eran. And I absolutely agree, I am sooo psyched to have landed this guy. The more I watch him the more I like. And I totally agree with Rob that if it weren’t for the domestic, there’s no doubt his stock would have erupted after the combine and he would have landed as a first round grade for most teams, and could have even been a top 10 pick in the draft.

      As certain as I could ever be on any one pick to have future success I think Clark’s earmarked for it so long as PC keeps him focused and on the up. I’m almost ready to declare right now that this front office has spurned conventional wisdom and done it again by plucking a gem. But that would be grossly premature.

      • Volume12

        Feel the same way about Clark myself guys. And being only 21 years old, his ceiling is out of this world man.

        I hear what you’re saying about declaring Clark a gem already. And however premature it may be, it’s totally justifiable in my book. I haven’t been this excited about a first overall selection from Seattle since Okung and ET. Seriously.

        Without the ‘red flags’ or ‘off the field’ stuff he very well may have been top 10 no doubt top 20 in this year’s class.

    • Steele1324

      EranUngar, I think you got to the heart of it. Clark is about brute force. Bullying. Chaos.

      He is not a technically polished pure pass rusher who is “pretty” along the lines of a Justin Houston or Dwight Freeney is his prime.

  31. James

    A true 12 understands just how good this Seahawk draft really was, and we are all buzzing right now, and it is not because of that triple grande flat white from Starbucks.

    I have posted before that I went into this draft will two hopes: 1) that John and Pete would not get too cute, that instead they would stick to their fundamentals and find those guys who best fit their profile of maximum effort/gritty competitor combined with unique athletic, uber-sparq abilities. This is how the Super Bowl roster was built in their first three drafts, and they needed to get back to basics. ….and 2) that John and Pete could find starting-quality OLs for Tom Cable in the mid-to-late rounds, thereby freeing their first couple of picks to be used on other needs, specifically an Edge guy, a much great need than most realized, and a KR. Wow, did they nail both of these targets.

    Rob has broken down Frank Clark’s game and demonstrated that he is genuinely a first round talent. His spaq numbers are insane, as well as his height/weight/wingspan ideal measurements. Even a quick look at his combine workout shows a guy with a powerful upper and lower body, combined with amazingly quick feet and elite recovery speed. Remember just how much better the Seahawks D was two years ago, with Clemons, Avril and Bennett as the three pass rushers. Last year, Irvin replaced Clemons and just did not have the production, and when Avril went down in the SB, that was that. Another Edge guy was desperately needed.

    And Tyler Lockett, with his quicks and instincts, comes across in my view as one of the most promising KRs in a generation. Remember this… he is coming in as an instant playmaker. He will get more touches per games (let’s say 6 punts and 3 kick-offs) than Baldwin or Kearse and maybe even Graham, too. Pete is putting the ball in Lockett’s hands and telling him to break open the game, imagine the electricity!

    All the other draft picks are so Seahawky that it sends shivers. I swear, if Tye Smith becomes another elite R5 DB, along with Sherm and Kam, the rest of the NFL will try to legislate that Seattle be forbidden to use a future R5 pick on a DB.

    I can’t wait to see these guys develop over the next couple of years… Go Hawks!

    • arias

      In fairness to Irvin, he was never meant to be a one for one replacement for Clemons since they play different positions. Clemons was starter at LEO in the DL rotation while Irvin’s the SAM. He was never expected to make up Clemons production rushing the passer when he’s dropping back in coverage a third of the time and rushing the passer the other two thirds. He simply wasn’t going to get as many pass rush snaps as Clemons did as LEO to rush the passer. But I’d agree with you about depth suffering at LEO when Clemons left.

      • williambryan

        Actually he was, as at the time of his drafting Carroll said Something like if God created a Leo it would be Bruce Irvin (obvious paraphrasing here but the point is the same) and he only played Leo or Nickel rusher his rookie year. Only after his failure in the Atlanta game did he start to become a SAM

        • arias

          He’s also been excellent when they’ve used him in coverage as SAM. That aspect of his game has been invaluable as his two pick sixes last year were game changers.

  32. Dawgma

    I hate this pic. Not a fan as a player, and he’s a detestable dirt bag I’ll never root for. If we had just skipped this loser we wouldn’t have tossed all those picks at a smurf return specialist, either. I could live with Lockett in the second, and then there were tons of good prospects available when our third and early fourth came up.

    But no. We had to blow it picking this ***hole.

    • Rob Staton

      I’m not saying you are wrong — but the Seahawks are not arguing they took him in spite of this issue. They flat out stated he didn’t willingly put his hands on a woman. No hedging. It’s a reminder that we don’t have the full facts. The team has a lot more info — and I highly doubt they draft him if he did the things that compel you to write those words. I think this is important.

      • EranUngar


        I would very much like to accept your words here and everything JS and PC had to say on this matter.

        But, for the life of me, I can’t bring myself to believe that a 270 pounds pro athlete found himself in a position that the only possible recourse was to hit a woman. I’m sorry because I love what i see as player but i can’t buy into that.

        Many many years ago, when i was serving my country, i was attacked by a very agree young woman with a very large kitchen knife…I had every justification to retaliate in such a life threatening situation. It would have been very easy to just let my training take over and “eliminate the threat”. I didn’t. She may have been “my enemy” but she was a woman.

        There is no way around it. He did something he shouldn’t have done.

        I hope it was a one time event he deeply regrets. I can believe that. I had my share of things i am not proud of. I hope he understands it and will never ever repeat it. I an a great believer in second chances especially for someone with his background. I hope he grows to justify that second chance off the field.

        I said too much already…lets just talk football here….

        • Rob Staton

          “I can’t bring myself to believe that a 270 pounds pro athlete found himself in a position that the only possible recourse was to hit a woman.”

          I understand that, however, when asked whether this is what Clark did, John Schneider stated he didn’t. So he’s either lying or they have some information on that night we aren’t privy to.

          • hawkdawg

            Some people simply do not understand the difference between allegations in a charge, and evidence that meets the applicable burden of proof. A charge doesn’t mean SQUAT until it is proven. Quite evidently, the prosecutor, after further investigation, did not believe he or she could prove assault or DV, so the charge was lowered to disorderly conduct, which DOES NOT REQUIRE PHYSICAL VIOLENCE AGAINST A PERSON TO BE PROVEN. That should be a strong hint to all concerned. Combine that with the Hawk’s own investigation to essentially the same effect–he didn’t hit her after all–and the picture is much, much different from that painted by many.

            So all this gratuitous lecturing about “hitting a woman” is a waste of bandwidth. Sure, it is a bad thing to do. Very bad indeed. But there is insufficient evidence that Clark did it to label him a “woman beater”, as many have jumped to do. I remain very excited to to see this guy play.

            • Steele1324

              Clark and JSPC’s decision to defend him and take him is the most polarizing single situation in JSPC’s regime. It is already splitting the fans, and it will continue to.

              Bottom line is that we will each make our decision to accept or reject what has transpired, based on our conscience and our reading of the matter.

              Those who withdraw support from this team entirely, who choose to turn away from a football spectator in general, have been given ample reason to do so.

              • Steele1324

                (sp) “from being a football spectator in general”

                • Tien

                  I’m not disputing your point hawkdawg but by the same token, just because someone isn’t convicted of a particular crime, it doesn’t mean he didn’t do it. How many times have we read reports of a woman repeatedly abused by her husband/boyfriend but because she won’t press charges or testify, the prosecutor couldn’t do much about it? I’m not saying that this is what happened in Clark’s case but I don’t think any of us know for sure what happened in this incident. Based on the circumstances that were reported, we can all come to our conclusions but in the end, they’re just guesses on our part. My personal guess is that he probably hit her that night and the Hawks and a number of people on this board, feel differently. Even if he did hit her/committed DV that night though does that mean he’s forever barred from playing in the NFL? I read something in another thread where someone made a good point in asking if DV is going to be an automatic deal breaker for NFL players, why isn’t that standard also applied to other everyday jobs? This incident, along with that theft conviction, did leave a bad taste in my mouth but in the end it comes down to risk management. Based on what we know of Clark’s past thus far, do the Hawks think they can manage his behavior so that he won’t be involved in future misconduct that might lead to suspension by the league? The Hawks obviously feel it’s a good risk and I have to reluctantly agree. He looks like an amazing talent and still very young so hopefully can be guided to better behavior. As you can see, I’m still conflicted about this pick but am cautiously hopeful of it also.

            • Phil

              Amen — since his guilt or innocence has not been established in the courts, let’s try not to convict him on this blog.

              • Phil

                This reply was to Hawkdawg.

          • Steele1324

            Rob, that is exactly the rub. It comes down to whether each of us, in good conscience, believe and trust Schneider. That he and the Seahawks, who have a stake and bias in a certain outcome, have investigated the evidence in a way that is objective, beyond any reproach, and more thorough than that done by law enforcement and legal authorities who do not have a personal stake.

            It is not a simple situation.

            It goes to the heart of who we each are. It forces us to dig deep. That is the most meaningful effect Frank Clark will have, however we decide to look at it.

            • Rob Staton

              I think it’s pretty simple really. Either you believe John Schneider — a husband and father and from what I can tell an upstanding citizen — or you think he’s lying and covering up a domestic abuser for the sake of one pass rusher to help win football games.

              • arias

                I love how you cut to the heart of the matter. Succinct, to the point, and absolutely dead on.

              • Steele1324

                Jerry Jones, Ozzie Newsome, Trent Baalke and Jed York are family men, too. They’re fine citizens.

                The NFL is a business.

                • Rob Staton

                  So Schneider is lying then Steele?

              • Dumbquestions

                Rob, your point within the original post re Clark was stronger:

                “If you trust him β€” or if you can make yourself believe you can trust him…”

                Seems about right to me. It’s not about *believing* Schneider as much as believing he’s convinced himself, which is also hard to believe, and that’s the nagging thing. It soils the rooting interest. He cannot know what happened. He can persuade himself that no proof exists in the legal sense, which might be true – but it’s not the same thing.

                It would be easier (for me at least) if they just came out and said we’re giving this guy a chance, and he’ll be gone at the first sign of trouble. I think that’s probably exactly what was said or what will be said, anyway. Admittedly harder to do.

                • Rob Staton

                  I think it’s changed somewhat though since Schneider stated in two separate press appearances that Clark did not hit the woman involved. So know it’s a question of whether you believe what he’s saying.

                  • Tien

                    Hi Rob,

                    I went back and listened to Schneider’s interview with Brock & Salk and he basically stated that they wouldn’t have drafted Clark if they believed he hit his girlfriend that night. It may be semantics to some but to me, there’s a difference between not having enough information to conclude/believe that he hit her (it’s possible that their investigation could not definitely determine whether he hit her or not) and saying point blank, Frank Clark did not hit her that night. The former provides wiggle room because again, since none of us were there, we can only take educated guesses on what happened. Based on what I read about what was reported from the police report and witness accounts, I think/believe that there was an argument that became heated & that he probably hit her after being assaulted/bitten by her. What’s troubling also is that despite this “exhaustive” investigation by the Hawks, the Seattle Times article this morning (and confirmed by the Hawks) reported that the Hawks only interviewed Clark about the incident and that they didn’t interview any of the witnesses and no mention that the girlfriend was interviewed either. Whether Schneider is deliberately lying to fans/the public to mitigate the negative PR over this pick or whether he’s chosen to believe this version of what happened so that he can look at himself in the mirror every morning who knows but IMO, it’s not a credible/thorough investigation if the Hawks only interviewed Clark about his perspective of the incident.

                    Even if I’m right, I still don’t think that Clark is some evil person that should be banned from playing in the NFL. He’s what 20/21 years old and had been drinking that night so who knows, it might have been just an unfortunate isolated incident. But with this incident in his background, the Hawks will probably have to cut him if he gets arrested/charged again for a similar incident. I’m with Dumbquestions and sort of wish the Hawks would have stated that this was an unfortunate incident and that they wanted to give this young man a second chance.

                  • Steele1324

                    Rob, the first paragraph that Tien wrote above sums up how I feel. Thanks, Tien.

                    • Rob Staton

                      It doesn’t concern me that the team didn’t speak to the witnesses because ultimately they also spoke to the people counselling both individuals, they spoke to the police and other sources. I don’t see why they’d necessarily need to speak to any eye witnesses in this situation or necessarily the victim. If the victim shared her side of the story to the counsellor and it matches up, that is arguably an indirect version of the same thing. I’m not even sure how kosher it is for NFL teams to go knocking on the door of the victim.

                      John Schneider has categorically stated twice now that Clark did not hit his girlfriend in the altercation. So again I come back to this. You either take his word, or you believe he is a liar.

                      Clark was not found guilty of domestic abuse. He was arrested for that at the time given the scene and the circumstances. The charges were reduced to disorderly conduct. For some reason that is being overlooked here, along with Schneider’s firm statements that he did not hit the woman involved in this incident.

                      The media are handling this situation poorly IMO. Just today a KING5 reporter Tweeted: “Hotel Clerk on #Seahawks pick Frank Clark “He beat the living crap” out of his girlfriend”. The clerk is not an eye witness. The clerk made that statement based on what other people said they heard happening. When asked at the scene what had happened, Clark said: “I didn’t do (anything) to her, I didn’t touch that woman, she is a woman,” adding, “I don’t know what they do, what they go through, I don’t know what she is going through, I know she is going through some crazy fits, and she may be pregnant.”

                      That is a horrendous Tweet/headline without any context.

        • AlaskaHawk

          I just hope they give him and whatever woman he is with some free couples counciling. Lets remember these guys are still young kids with lots of adreneline, things can spiral out of control real fast at that age. So give him and his woman some tools to help their relationship. If it really wasn’t his fault he may have to find a better woman. If it was his fault, he needs to change his behavior. Because it will have serious consequences the next time.

          • arias

            They’ve got that base covered AlaskaHawk. They’ve been in counseling since it happened and PC has talked about how they’ve got a structured curriculum for him in place to maintain him on the right track in Seattle. It seems like they’re not going to take any chances with their investment with the stakes so high and their reps vouching for the kid on the line, nor should they. I’m glad they appear to have a plan in place to guide this kid and keep him focused and from the sounds of it Clark has a great attitude and is completely on board.

  33. Zorn is King

    I’ve enjoyed following the blog; a community of knowledgeable, articulate, diverse opinion makers, moderated by a democratic, concensus building facilitator in Rob Stanton.

    It put me back in touch with many things but most importantly, a way for men to express their opinions through the lense of loyalty. Each contributor is here because they care deeply about the team.

    Yet, this care is expressed in hours of research, dispute, philosophical differences, ethical leanings, etc.

    It’s provides me with a window into how front offices, scouts, coaches and players maintain and sustain an organization of high standards while handling finance, moral questions, weighing talent, and above all, finding a way to maintain a complex organism- the team.

    Hats off to all of you.

    This may come off as oddly anthropological, but it’s amazing to see human nature expressed in a focused, yet dynamic way.

    Makes me see the relevance of the Internet, and the power of sports to pry more deeply into the social/ cultural world we live in.

    It’s a blog where we find some small piece of what is meaningful to us, in a world that can often seem arbitrary, abstract, or even alienating.

    Great job at bringing a great group of people together Rob.

    • Trevor

      Very well said!

      • Volume12

        Beautifully said. And thank you.

    • Rob Staton

      Thanks man — appreciate it

  34. Bernardo De Biase

    As much as I find domestic violence detestable and repulsive, I tend to believe that hate and punishment doesn’t help much least solve the problem of either the case (of course, if proven Guilty) nor the whole problem of violence against women. There are a whole bunch of psychoanalytics and criminologists in Northern Europe what they call “Restaurative Juatice”, that tries to break the paradigm of “punishing is an act in defense of the victim” as they claim that the due process that leads to the conviction of the criminal and his stigmatization of the criminal, generate even worse sequels of post-traumatic experience than the own act of violence itself. They conclude that throwing even more hate and negative stimulation on the issue, you can never build anything on the act of violence, and you are only feeding an everlasting cicle of violence.

    There are smarter and less painful ways of dealing with the case than throwing the guy under the bus.

  35. AlaskaHawk

    Now if we could just start a summer league for members of the shadow and practice squads. It would be a lot of fun, like baseballs spring training camp, or basketballs D-league.

    • Volume12

      I think the NFL has been running with this thought for a few years now, but can’t come to a conclusion. How would Goodell put money in his pockets and the ownera he’s chummy with. It would absoutely be exciting.

      Put the league in cities that don’t have an NFL team. Like for Seattle, maybe Portland, for Dallas, Oklahoma City/Tulsa, for Cincinnati, Louisville. Something like that.

      • AlaskaHawk

        Tacoma could host a team. Only 40 miles south of Seattle.

    • Donald

      Its a good thought. The only problem would be the injury risk.

      Also, could that become too much football, and lessen the excitement and anticipation of the real NFL season?

    • john_s

      They’ve already tried that with the Word League. Originally the World League had times in the US and in Europe and that flopped so they moved the whole operation to Europe which eventually folded.

      The cost vs reward is not worth it in the owners eyes IMO.

  36. Ukhawk

    Feel much better about this pick after watching more tape beyond the Northwestern on draft breakdown. Clark is definitely 1st round material. He actually reminds me a lot of Lawrence Taylor. Only worried that he made many more disciplinary mistakes while at Michigan than the accused DV incident.

    • AlaskaHawk

      I like Clark a lot. One thing I like is that he is a little heavier then the LEOs we been looking for. It’s okay if the lighter guy can get to the QB, but they take a real beating in the process. I’ve always admired the heavier defensive lines that teams like the Ravens and Pittsburg seem to put up. Then throw in a fast linebacker/leo to blitz once in awhile and you got a real good defense that holds up in tough games.

      Anyway, I like it that we have both light fast defensive ends, and now a heavier de with a non-stop motor. Seems like we have our choice of guys to use in rotation.

  37. Soggyblogger

    I was excited before I read this article. Now, I am ecstatic. Few here add in Hill, but Hill was tearing it up before he got injured. He was just coming into his own. With Avril, Bennett, Irvin, Hill, and now Clark, we are stacked.

    It feels like we got the two best available players we needed in Graham and Clark. We got the best receiver possible with Graham. A proven red zone target which was our biggest need by far. Then we got depth at pass rushing with Clark, which was such an obvious need when Hill went down earlier in the season and then Avril got hurt in the SB.

    Our third biggest need this year was a special teams KR/PR guy, and we got that along with the most day one ready WR in the draft not picked in the first 5 players.

    Then we added depth and competition for the OL. My goodness, this was an A++ draft.

  38. AlaskaHawk

    Even Mel Kiper gave us an A minus. We are going to have to start being nice to Kiper!!! He went from Mr. Irrelevent to Mr. Knowledgeable on Seahawk comments.

    • john_s

      I think Mel gave up on grading Schneider’s draft and just gave them an A- so he wouldn’t get the future backlash once it overachieves whatever grade he would have given them

      • Misfit74

        This. It’s a trend, too.

  39. Trevor

    Seems like we only got a couple of the more popular UDFAs in Rawls, Hill, Slater.

    I wonder if they kept a chunk of their UDFA $ allotment / cap to take a run at La’el Collins? If he is innocent then he certainly deserves an opportunity. With a starting LG spot being open on a Super Bowl Bowl contender you have to think we would be high on his list.

    If we picked up a guy most draft pundits thought would be a top 15 pick then it would be the cherry on top of a fantastic offseason in my opinion.

    -An All Pro Tight end and best red zone target in the league
    – The best Kick Returner in the draft
    – A starting corner who is basically a swap for Max at 1/2 the price
    – Beast Mode resigned for 3 more years
    – A incredibly talented pass rusher to add to our DL rotation in Clark
    – A solid Defensive tackle in Otybe

    4 moves remain to give us a 2013 caliber roster
    1) Sign La’el Collins as UDFA
    2) Sign Myers to play Center and groom Sokoli on a 1 year deal.
    3) Extend Wagner
    4) Extend Wilson

    • Screeching Hawk

      That made me smile Trevor!

      • Miles

        Other than the no-brainer extensions, these are the remaining moves I would like, if feasible:

        Sign C Chris Myers to 1-year deal.
        Re-Sign TE Zach Miller to 1-year deal.
        Re-Sign QB Tarvaris Jackson OR trade for QB Matt Barkley from Eagles.

        Signing La’el Collins would be money if he didn’t murder somebody.

  40. Bokoli

    Question: If Bokoli is such a freak athlete, why did he switch from defense in the first place? Defense is where you can attack and use your freak athleticism, and not have to worry as much about footwork and blocking fundamentals.

    • Rob Staton

      It’s vital these days to have ultra athletic o-linemen to combat the freak athletes playing defense. Nearly every athlete in college wants to play defense these days and it’s creating a real disparagy at the next level between o-line and the pass rush. We’ll see more and more converts. Cam Erving was a similar convert in round one.

      Seattle ahead of the curve here.

  41. James

    When I graduated from law school, way back in 1980, you may be amazed to hear that there was a concept in our country called, “innocent until proven guilty.” My how times have changed.

    The Frank Clark brouhaha has reached the point of absurdity, so let me offer these thoughts:

    – some of you may have noticed that football is a violent and brutal sport. My understanding is that once they tried out the game with Franciscan monks, but it garnered little interest. Once they peopled the game with men who are supremely violent and brutal on the field, then folks started paying attention. Only a hypocrite (of which admittedly there are many) would act surprised that, from time to time, the violence and brutality spreads from the field into private lives.

    – this of course does not excuse domestic violence, which is a scourge not only in our society, but across the earth, and across history. It is mainly fueled by two factors: 1) a history of witnessing, or being victimized by, this violence as a child; and 2) alcohol and drugs.

    – the absurdity to today’s situation is that the lynch mob mentality has gotten involved and is running amok. The way this is supposed to work is that a person commits a crime, that crime is reported to the police, who investigate and make a report to the prosecutor, who then issues an arrest warrant as appropriate. If further investigation confirms the arrest, then the suspect is put on trial, where in theory he has the opportunity to defend himself, question the witnesses and the evidence, and make the case that the accusation is not proven beyond a reasonable doubt. If the jury does indeed find the accused guilty, then the judge sentences the person, he does his time in jail, and then he is released. Double jeopardy prevents the person from being tried and punished a second time.

    – but the lynch mob is not satisfied with this, not out of a sense of justice, but for their own amusement as they get high from punishing the person again and again, until they are satisfied, or until a more interesting target emerges. Today, there is a widespread thought that, if a person is accused of wrongdoing, not proven guilty in a court of law, but merely accused, then that person’s employer (in this case, the NFL) should administer punishment. Punishment not after a legal fact gathering process, nor after a fair trial, but whenever they feel like it, generally under pressure from the lynch mob. Since when is the punishment for a crime administered not by the justice system, but by the employer? ….since now, I guess.

    – now, today’s lynch mob is not a bunch of red necks in overalls, but an audience of paying customers of what is laughably termed sports journalism. These so-called sports journalists, most of them nothing more than gossip columnists, have a vested interest in the raising of a mob and of the manipulation of that mob. The more that mob clicks on their articles, the more they get paid. In other words, these sports journalists, whether Geoff Baker, the Seattle Times, ESPN or the cacophony of “sports talk” hosts, have a motivation to take the accused to a trial of public opinion, and to satisfy the mob with blood, before turning to the next offender.

    – it does not take a genius to piece together what is likely going on with the Frank Clark matter. Based simply of a few comments from John and Pete, and the brief comments from Mr Clark, plus a quick look at the circumstances reveals this likely scenario:

    • James


      – Mr Clark and the young woman were probably intoxicated, and they got into an argument. Mr Clark referred to being accused of being a “womanizer” which he denied. The young woman probably accused him of cheating on her, he denied it, she got angry, there was a loud and terrible argument, not uncommon when both parties are drunk, and she probably tried to push or slap him.

      – in “defending” himself, the woman fell or was knocked to the floor… him never hitting or striking her, but she obtained injuries in the fall.

      – at this point, the witnesses entered, and they and the children observed the scene, the police were called and as required by law, Mr Clark was arrested. There is no dispute over what the witnesses saw, which was the aftermath of the incident, so there was no point in John and Pete interviewing them again. Nothing in the police report is in dispute.

      – but the other side of the story can only be told by the two people who were there, Mr Clark and the young woman. Based on the prosecution reducing the original charge from domestic violence and battery to a public disturbance misdemeanor, either the young woman gave them the facts that would not support a criminal charge, or she declined to press charges, perhaps because she took some share in the responsibility for the incident. It appears that, understandably, the young woman did not want to talk openly about this to anyone, and certainly not to 30 NFL football teams. According to John, she authorized her therapist to tell what really happened, and that was that.

      – The lynch mob is just going to have to turn its attention elsewhere. If I were John and Pete, I would simply state this, “the matter has been adjudicated by the justice system and neither Mr Clark nor the young woman wish to discuss it further. She has authorized their counselor to indicate that in fact, Mr Clark did not strike her, and she has nothing more to say about it.” Period.

      • Miles

        What about the victim saying in the police report that Clark punched her in the face? What about the witnesses seeing her laying near-unconscious on the floor? I get that there are possibilities we can’t fathom because we weren’t there. She could have fallen, sure. But the fact that she said she was stricken, there were kids saying that Clark was trying to “kill” their sister, and there were two women who heard what sounded like a head banging against a wall, leads me to believe that the evidence goes beyond reasonable doubt. It’s possible that Clark did not hit her, but reasonably possible? I’m not sure, man.

        The courts reduced his charge. But often times this is the product of a good lawyer who can talk his way out of big trouble. Again, I get that it’s possible and we don’t know everything, but it’s pretty alarming that all this information is present. And it’s also alarming that Schneider said point blank “He did not hit her,” and then this report comes out with the witnesses.

        Here are the two things that most stand to defend Clark: 1) Police are often biased when they write police reports, as they need to identify a reason that justifies an arrest. This feeling can also lead police to ask leading questions to the disoriented victim, who can be convinced through the way the questions are asked that, “Maybe he did hit me.” 2) Clark has the power to sway people’s opinion by what he says and how he behaves. If he acts frustrated and dismissive with questions on Friday, it’s going to get worse. If he shows remorse and expresses a devotion to make good, things will get better. That’s really what this comes down to. I’m a pretty big believer in the idea that you are not your past. Frank Clark is who he is right now and he can decide the person he wants to be. What Frank Clark says will have huge ramifications on the perception of this for many.

        But I do have to disagree about the role of journalists. I think journalists are important in sports just as they are important in politics and every aspect of life. They are the checks and balances to the powers that be. Without journalism, there would be zero accountability from people who make big decisions. Without journalism, wars would be had without reason. Relatively to football, without journalism teams would probably employ known murderers from prison if they could play. It’s just the cut throat nature of the business. Journalism is the check that lets us keep our dignity while we watch the NFL.

  42. James

    You are making the classic mistake of trying a case without all the facts. It is not your case to try. It is the case of the prosecutors. You have been carried along in this by the so-called journalists to participate in the process, which is shorthand for joining the mob. In other words, they are dragging everyone along in this “investigation” as a form of entertainment, at which they benefit monetarily. The only people in position to judge this matter is the prosecution and the justice system, and they determined that the incident warranted a misdemeanor charge of public disturbance. The young woman conveyed to the Seahawks that Frank Clark did not strike her. She owes no obligation to inform the mob of anything. It is none of our business. If journalism confined itself to investigating corruption and lawbreaking, then fine and good; but this is a private matter that is none of their business and none of our business. It would only be our business if Frank Clark was convicted of a domestic violence crime, which he was not.

    • Miles

      I hear you. But I would say that the context of this situation from an NFL perspective is different from others. Pre-Ray Rice this probably wouldn’t have been as much of a story. But post-Ray Rice it is. I have worked in journalism before so I am just pointing out that this is a news story worthy of being reported on; the NFL is in the most dire situation it has ever faced with domestic violence, and then the Seahawks go and spend a pick on someone who is an object of that problem. I’m not saying he did it; just saying that is how it is perceived. This is a story, whether you think it’s misled, corrupt or whatever else.

      I would also say that the Greg Hardy situation is still our business. He did not get convicted of domestic violence ultimately, but the suspicion is still there. Given the state of how DV is viewed in our society and what the NFL is going through, I would say that, regardless of Frank Clark being innocent or guilty, this is very much our business. It’s not just about Frank Clark. It’s about hitting women and the amount of tolerance that should be shown for it. This is a huge issue that needs to be talked about, and Frank Clark is right at the center of it like it or not.

      • James

        Miles, you are correct that DV is a problem that should concern all of us, and one that our society needs to do far more to combat. My point, however, is that the place for this, outside of improved public awareness, is in the justice system. There is no way that the NFL can give a player a “fair trial” on this matter. Can the NFL subpoena witnesses, can the NFL put witnesses under oath, is the NFL an impartial jury? To try a player in the court of public opinion and to demand punishment outside of the legal system, without any semblance of a fair trail, is the very definition of a lynch mob.

        I would argue for more victim assistance, and victim protections, and more severe jail terms for the guilty, rather than a star chamber on sports radio. We can be sure that this week Frank Clark is facing the brunt of the mob, even after his case was adjudicated, and you can be sure that his case was fairly adjudicated, and the victim’s rights were protected, if it was an Ohio prosecutor charging a Michigan football player!

        Given what we know of the strength of the witness statements, the prosecutor would surely have charged Mr Clark with DV, unless the young woman either admitted to facts that changed the entire scenario, or if she refused to press charges, due to feeling in some way partly responsible. This is exactly why we should presume someone innocent until proven guilty, because only in a judicial process can the facts come out.

        Trial by King 5, trial by the Seattle Times, trial by sports radio, trial by ESPN, while the mob gathers with torches outside the dungeon, is shameful to the extreme. I hope John and Pete stand firm, and I am sure they will. The only mistake John made was in saying too much, especially about their research and interviews related to Mr Clark.

        As I indicated above, all John needed to say was, “the matter has been adjudicated by the justice system and neither Mr Clark nor the young woman wish to discuss it further. She has authorized their counselor to indicate that in fact, Mr Clark did not strike her, and she has nothing more to say about it.” Period. Domestic violence is most certainly all our business as we construct a legal system via the democratic process; but the situation between Mr Clark and the young woman, now that the legal system has spoken, is most certainly none of our business.

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