Here is today’s new live blog. Keep refreshing for updates. My notes are based on tape study as drills were uploaded online and broadcast on the NFL Network. I have watched in full the OL vs DL 1v1 drills from Wednesday.
Also, if you missed it yesterday I was on 710 ESPN with Jake & Stacy to discuss the Senior Bowl and the Seahawks off-season. You can listen to the segment via the embed below:
— Travis Jones continues to really impress. Firstly, he looked especially agile in the figure-of-eight drill which bodes well for his combine testing. Then he had a tremendous rep against Cole Strange — once again connecting with his arms and driving him deep into the backfield (which has become Jones’ calling card in Mobile). He has difference-making power and if you’re looking for traits — that’s a very appealing one. On the next rep, Strange adjusted his approach and closed quickly on Jones to eliminate space so he couldn’t drive his hands into his chest and gain contact. However, to be fair, Jones still found a way to latch on and drive the center backwards. On a rep against Zion Johnson Jones also won with a great push/pull move. He flashed a terrific club on another 1v1 rep to create a pressure. Jones has been one of the big winners this week and he has the potential to cause havoc up front as a nose tackle with plus athleticism and incredible power.
— Perrion Winfrey had a handful of really good snaps. In a 1v1 vs Michigan’s Andrew Steuber he showed great hands to slip any attempt to stall his progress. That created separation and he duly finished to the QB. Winfrey showed a nice combination of technique and quickness. On the next rep, Winfrey drove Steuber deep into the backfield with a well executed bull-rush. Later during scrimmages he had another big win — slipping a block to fire into the backfield and make a TFL on the running back. Zion Johnson got the better of him on one rep — Johnson leaned into the block a bit too much but he was still able to stick with Winfrey and gain positioning. On the next rep Winfrey won easily against Johnson with a spin move. There’s no doubting Winfrey’s clear talent and upside. Consistency is the big question mark — and it will be throughout the draft process.
— On a couple of reps we saw evidence of Trevor Penning’s athleticism. He has light feet and moves well. Yet there was evidence of a lack of refinement too. He would drop too far and give up the inside. On tape he’s in attack mode and I’d like to see a bit more of that. He was on the back foot with some of these reps and it isn’t really his style.
— Abraham Lucas did a terrific job on his first rep. He has a superb, natural drop — planting the anchor, engaging and slamming the door shut as the defender attacks the edge, then counters. It was textbook. On the next rep the opposite happened. He was off-balance, lost leverage and was dumped on his backside for an ugly loss that had the D-liners celebrating. I’ve already seen enough from Lucas this week to not have any concern. He is the real deal. He showed that against Myjai Sanders late in the session — again getting into a great position on his drop and catching Sanders, stoning him on contact. On their second rep, Sanders tried a bull-rush and gained some traction.
— Haskell Garrett looked really quick and dynamic in 1v1’s. It’s a shame his arm length probably keeps him out of Seattle’s range. He’s a cannonball of a prospect who is really tough to get your hands on.
— I’m stunned how OTT the coverage of Zion Johnson has been. The internet does this and it’s why it’s important to watch the tape and not rely on group-think. In his first rep he was literally flagged for holding by the officials as he clung on for dear life to avoid a sack. They don’t throw flags in these 1v1’s — yet Johnson garnered a penalty. On the very next rep he was easily beaten — just brushed off by Otito Ogbonnia who used his hands to create separation and then just exploded into the backfield. Johnson is a mid-round guard. That’s it. And that’s fine. People touting him for round one need to give it a rest. The coverage of his Mobile performance has been nuts. He looks athletic — he carries very minimal body fat. You can’t help but be impressed by his frame. I get that. Yet the reps don’t show the player many are claiming. Later in the 1v1’s he was easily beaten by Perrion Winfrey too.
— Logan Hall beat Marquis Hayes with a nice swim move on his first rep. On the next rep, Hall was too high and Hayes gained hand-position and leverage to win the 1v1. I still want to see more from Hall, this hasn’t been the dominant display I was expecting. Late in the session Hall battled with Andrew Steuber and had a nice win — driving to the right gap and then spinning to disengage and releasing to the quarterback. That was a really athletic play.
— Boye Mafe won his first rep easily against Bernhard Raimann — who has struggled a bit. Raimann dipped his head and lunged at Mafe, who just brushed him off to round the edge and finish. On the second rep, Raimann stalls him initially but a counter from Mafe enables him to break free and get to the quarterback. Two quality reps from Mafe — still a lot of technical work needed for Raimann. He has the athleticism and upside but on this evidence, it needs to be developed with better technique.
— When scrimmages began I noticed Daniel Faalele dumped on his backside yet again (see below). I’ve said it all week — he’s too big. It’s really difficult to play the edge at 6-8 and 380lbs and retain balance and control. He gave up an easy inside move in 1v1’s too. The more he has to move, the bigger the problems are. He catches pass rushers and tries to absorb them. He can’t be a dancing bear at that size. Which means if you’re willing to have a 6-8, 380lbs guard — fine. But that in itself comes with issues in terms of leverage and throwing windows. I wouldn’t draft Faalele personally.
— It was a quiet day for Arnold Ebiketie in the 1v1’s. He was easily sent to the turf by Matt Waletzko in his first rep and on the second he slipped while trying to execute a spin move.
— During American team scrimmages, Greg Dulcich caught a really nice touchdown pass on a throw by Malik Willis. Dulcich is just so smooth and he’s shown this week he can block. He is seriously underrated.
— John Ridgeway was well handled by Kentucky centre Luke Fortner on their initial 1v1. On his second rep, Ridgeway drove Cade Mays deep into the backfield. I like aspects to Ridgeway’s game — his power and size. I’m not sure he has special qualities though.
— Devante Wyatt was well handled by Ed Ingram on their first rep. Wyatt was too high, Ingram gained hand-placement and leverage and dominated the 1v1. Wyatt’s second rep was far better against Georgia team mate Justin Shaffer — a nice club, violent hands and then having created the angle he sprinted into the backfield for a clean, superb win. In his third rep, Wyatt blew by Dylan Parham by engaging contact then just throwing him off. The combination of power, hands and speed is scary. He is an interior dynamo and exactly what Seattle hasn’t had for many, many years. If he’s there at #41 — run to the podium. I fear he’ll be long gone.
— Spencer Burford shut down Kingsley Enagbare on their first rep. Enagbare was too high and offered a big target for the tackle. On the second rep, Enagbare tried a spin move on Burford and it didn’t work — he was easily shut down again. It’s easy to like Enagbare’s length and size. He’s had some wins this week. Is he a special athlete though? Not on this evidence. Not compared to some of the other dynamic edge rushers.
— Eric Johnson destroyed Darian Kinnard with a spin-move. Kinnard kicked inside to guard and was easily beaten. Too often he just doesn’t get low enough — he’s too upright and high. He looks the part of a NFL right tackle or guard but he has to be able to bend and play the leverage game better. He did have a win against Zach Carter to end the session.
— Phil Mathis had a tough time disengaging on his first 1v1 rep. He also really battled with Jamaree Salyer on his second — it was a good tussle and Mathis got free right at the end. He doesn’t appear to have many clean wins. Everything is a battle. He does win most of his 1v1’s but it’s always late in the rep after a lot of hand-fighting. You can’t fault his motor but you’d like to see a few easy victories like you see from Wyatt — using quickness and a nice swim. I’m not sure that’s him though. He’s violent, tough and plays his tail off. But is he a bit limited as an athlete? That’s my question based on what we’ve seen in Mobile.
— Sam Williams destroyed Max Mitchell in their first 1v1 rep. Mitchell was flat-footed and Williams easily showed to the outside, swam inside and looked quick, dynamic and explosive. He’s a late arrival in Mobile but a very exciting prospect. On a rep against Kinnard he took the edge, dipped under the attempted block and won the play. He’s just too quick for Kinnard. Williams will test well at the combine and could be on Seattle’s radar.
— I’ve no idea what Max Mitchell was doing against Jermaine Johnson. His drop was fine but then a mild club by Johnson dumped Mitchell on his backside. It was a really ugly rep. I thoroughly enjoyed watching Mitchell’s tape vs Texas but this was not a good 1v1 session for the Louisiana right tackle. He did have a better final rep vs Sam Williams after switching to left tackle but even then — Williams looked the superior, more fluid athlete. I want to really like Mitchell but I’m starting to think he is what he is — a decent lineman who lacks great size and length.
— Jermaine Johnson is the wow performer of the Senior Bowl. Just incredible. Feet, quickness, hands. On his first rep he just juked away from the blocker who got nowhere near him. He wins with speed, speed-to-power, a bull-rush. He is the complete pass rusher. If only Seattle had the #10 pick.
— For his size (280lbs), Zach Carter is quick and sharp. When he kicks inside he shows good power and an ability to drive blockers into the backfield. He has talent.
— The Seahawks need more BAMF’s. We’ve been talking about it for years. And this is why I want Dameon Pierce in Seattle. He’s an absolute beast, who gets everything (and everyone) going:
Favorite moment from the day @IRep229
— Paige Dimakos (@The_SportsPaige) February 3, 2022
— Cole Strange has taken some snaps at center and has faired better than some others making the switch (eg Zion Johnson). This is not a good center class and it makes me wonder whether a team like the Seahawks would show interest in Strange. He’s had an up-and-down week with some impressive wins and a few whiffs. This was well emphasised yesterday when he barely got a finger on Isaiah Thomas on one rep but then bounced back on the rematch to stone him at the LOS. He has the size Seattle likes (6-4, 304lbs, 33.5 inch arms, 10 1/4 inch hands). This was a nice rep on a screen pass from earlier today. He moves well at the second level. He also had a nice 1v1 win against Travis Jones. This is great hand/feet coordination and he looks the part here. He could be a very intriguing center project.
— It’s being reported that Haskell Garrett had to be helped off the field during Thursday’s practise with a suspected upper-body injury. It appears this is the incident. Not sure at all what Andrew Steuber was doing at the end of this rep but it was unnecessary and dangerous.
— This isn’t Senior Bowl related but regulars will know how much disdain I have for the Ikem Ekonwu hype. He isn’t a left tackle, he’s a guard. He’ll need to test well to be a high-ish pick because his tape is average. Here’s Jermaine Johnson easily defeating him off the edge. And yet the media calls Johnson a borderline first rounder and I’ve seen Ekonwu as high as the #1 overall pick in some mocks. Utter nonsense.
— This is the Trevor Penning I expected to see this week. Aggressive, punishing. That’s how he played at Northern Iowa. He seemed tentative on Tuesday and Wednesday, almost like he was playing ‘defense’ with his blocks. This is the front-foot, physical blocker who finishes plays he can be. Here’s another rep from today showing more of the same.
— Here’s a good rep from today with Zion Johnson winning 1v1 against Travis Jones. Presumably the internet will crown Johnson as the next Quenton Nelson as a consequence.
— Brian Asamoah is a thoroughly modern day linebacker. He could easily be a top-45 pick. This rep in coverage shows why. He’s very good at working in space, chasing down the ball-carrier and delivering jarring hits. Yet it’s his work against a tight end as you see in that 1v1 that makes him such an interesting player for the next level.
— Here are two really good reps for Abraham Lucas vs Arnold Ebiketie. In the first 1v1, Lucas’ footwork isn’t great to begin with. His feet are choppy and his drop starts poorly. Yet he still manages to engage Ebiketie, drive him wide of the quarterback and not offer a pathway back to the QB. On the second rep, Ebiketie tries an inside move and Lucas just shuts it down.
— At times, Boye Mafe just makes it look easy. Watch this comfortable spin move to get away from Matt Waletzko. Show outside, spin inside. Simple but effective and extremely fluid in his movements. He can maybe get vertical a bit quicker on the spin but the agility and quickness is obvious. On the second rep he chops the hands away and easily beats Waletzko to the edge with speed. Mafe is a very impressive athlete.
— This looks like a win for Cade Mays vs Phil Mathis but it’s slightly deceptive. Yes — Mays obstructs the path to the quarterback. Yet Mathis has forced him deep into the pocket. Do this in a game and the QB has to move off the spot — and that’s really the name of the game.
— Coming into the week we talked up Zach Carter’s upside and talent and he’s had a good time in Mobile. Check out this rep where he drives Chris Paul right into the QB’s lap. He’s quick and powerful with great size (280lbs) and has legit inside/out potential.
I’m finishing the live blog today. If there is ample indoor footage from Thursday’s practise I will do another review post tomorrow. I will also be offering thoughts on the game on Saturday.