Some further thoughts on yesterday’s A+ mock attempt

Yesterday I used the Pro Football Network mock draft simulator to try and create an A+ draft for the Seahawks. The focus was on talent instead of need. I was happy with the outcome but some disagreed with a couple of picks.

I had Seattle taking Will Anderson at #5. I think Anderson would be a really good pick. You’re not getting a Bosa brother or Myles Garrett but I think his impact can be immediate and long lasting both on the field and in the locker room.

However, there is something I do think warrants noting. No quarterback.

The fanbase is split between those for and against selecting a quarterback early. I sense the split isn’t so much based on the actual players available. A case in point, nobody really spends much time discussing the cons of the defensive players touted to go early, yet the QB’s are often decried for their flaws.

Instead I think the thought process is based around a desire to try and win now versus a more long term approach. Improve the defense for 2023 and maybe the team can succeed? Spending the fifth pick on someone who wouldn’t play this year constitutes a waste in the eyes of many.

Others believe the Seahawks will never truly be competitive unless they strike gold at quarterback. Thus, investing in one of the top four available this year is necessary. The re-signing of Geno Smith and Drew Lock means that player can have a year to learn without any pressure to start. The pick might not pay dividends in 2023 but it could set the franchise up for the next decade and longer if managed properly.

Personally, I think the Seahawks should be thinking long term whatever they do. As time has passed it’s become largely forgotten that Geno had a fairly inglorious second half of the season. He certainly wasn’t helped by injuries on offense and a porous defense. However, habits that have hampered his progress in the past, returned after his hot start. The high number of turnover worthy plays for example — and the plays that did actually lead to turnovers.

A friendly schedule aided the Seahawks. It shouldn’t totally undermine the achievement of making the playoffs but it also needs to be acknowledged. Seattle was competitive against the 49ers for a half in the wildcard round before being blown away, brutally, by their division rivals. It was their third comprehensive defeat to the Niners.

I don’t think anyone should be fooled into thinking the Seahawks are close. They aren’t. And they likely won’t be that much closer with a haul of rookies coming onto the team and the addition of one significant, key free agent in Dre’Mont Jones. They can certainly improve and I think we should all set that low bar now. Can they look better and trend upwards, even if results-wise they stall or even regress?

I enjoyed watching Geno in 2022. Even in the playoff game I thought he showed well. He was certainly the least of Seattle’s worries during their uglier defeats, when the defense was a shambles.

However, I think people claiming the Seahawks have definitively found their long term quarterback are dabbling in wishful thinking. Smith has a ways to go yet.

Thus, I’m not convinced by two things. Firstly, Seattle’s ability to craft the kind of elite defense and running game combo that would allow Smith to point guard this franchise to glory. Secondly, Smith’s ability to cover for roster flaws in the way Patrick Mahomes, Josh Allen, Joe Burrow and Justin Herbert can.

On the first point, I don’t think it’s often noted just how difficult it is to build a great defense. Especially in the modern day offensive-focussed NFL. The only one that really exists currently is San Francisco’s. They ranked first in defensive DVOA last year. The Cowboys, Patriots, Bills and Jets followed. I’m not sure the rest of the top-five compare to the Niners. Perhaps you could make a case for the Eagles, ranked sixth in DVOA, but they were slightly exposed in the Super Bowl.

A quick throat clearing — you’ll notice that none of those teams had a Vic Fangio inspired defensive system in 2022.

San Francisco started building their defense in 2014. That’s when they spent a first rounder on Jimmie Ward. A year later, their first two picks were Arik Armstead and Jaquiski Tartt. In 2016 they used their top pick on DeForest Buckner. The following year they used two more first round picks on defense — two busts in Solomon Thomas and Reuben Foster (having famously, according to reports, not even scouted Patrick Mahomes fully because they were so determined not to draft a QB that year while waiting for Kirk Cousins to reach free agency — there might be a lesson there). They selected Fred Warner in 2018 and Nick Bosa and Dre Greenlaw in 2019. Then, having traded Buckner to the Colts, they immediately replaced him with Javon Kinlaw in 2020.

That’s seven first round picks between 2014-2020. If the Seahawks plan to try and mimic the 49ers by building a fantastic defense while plugging-in quarterbacks at will, shouldn’t we acknowledge that this could take the best part of a decade?

People often cite the shortening years left in Carroll’s career. Does he have another five years to take shots in the draft to accumulate the sheer volume of players needed to emulate the Niners?

If they invest so much stock in the defense, are the staff capable of scheming the players to success? Seattle’s defense has started every season poorly for years. They’ve spent season after season trying to fix things on the run. They’ve given away yards galore, through the air and more recently on the ground. They’re running a scheme that a number of teams are trying and equally struggling to execute.

It’s also worth pointing out that even the Niners, who many hope to emulate, still felt they needed to invest three first round picks in a super-athletic, high-upside quarterback.

On the second point, regarding Geno Smith — if the defense doesn’t reach the highest level, is he capable of compensating with his play? In a game against the Niners, or a playoff game, can he be the difference if the defense continues to struggle?

The top quarterbacks step up to the plate and drag their teams to victory in big games when other areas of the team are struggling. Can Geno do that? Is there a danger that the complementary football won’t be good enough to allow a non-elite QB to make you a contender, while the quarterback won’t be good enough to make up for holes on the roster?

The team and player deserve credit for the deal signed to keep Smith in Seattle. It keeps everything on the table for the Seahawks and if Geno succeeds, he’ll be richly rewarded through the incentives attached to the deal.

It’s also kind of being glossed over that many people were talking about franchise tags not so long ago. People were touting mega contracts worth between $30-40m and shouting ‘pay the man’ on Twitter. What actually happened? Smith’s people were able to gauge the market at the combine and immediately after, signed a contract to stay in Seattle that is the definition of ‘team friendly’.

He surely didn’t do that through generosity. He likely signed that deal because the heavily incentivised, non-committal deal was the best one on the table. Or at least, relatively close to the best one on the table. Was any other team even linked with interest in Geno Smith? I can’t recall his name being touted for anyone else. The Buccs maybe? That never seemed to go anywhere though.

Why is that? It appears the league is sceptical that he is in fact the real deal. They see a journeyman career, a fantastic first half of the 2022 season, then a slightly challenging second half.

Here’s what I wrote in an article on January 23rd, discussing Smith’s future:

Hugh Millen raised an interesting point on KJR on Friday. He pointed to a stat provided by PFF listing ‘turnover worthy plays’ by each quarterback. Smith had the second most in the NFL, just behind Josh Allen. Millen also pointed out that Allen had far more ‘explosive’ passing plays and a lot more rushing yards to compensate for his erraticism.

Building on the point, he then noted that when looking at the top-10 quarterbacks — on average 80.6% of their turnover worthy plays had resulted in actual turnovers. In comparison, Geno Smith saw only 48% of his turnover worthy plays actually result in an interception.

That’s staggering.

If he’d thrown the 80.6% average like the rest of the QB’s in the top-10, he would’ve had 25 picks. Even if he’d had a still well below average 65% — he would’ve led the league in turnovers.

I’m not even sure if this accounts for stuff like the pick-six against San Francisco in Seattle which was called back for a fortuitous penalty. That play was blown dead, after all. So it could be even worse than these numbers suggest.

Regardless, Smith had incredible luck when it came to turnovers this season.

Perhaps the Seahawks are mere beneficiaries of league scepticism, allowing them to land the bargain of the year? Or maybe they also retain some scepticism and want the ability to escape his contract in 2024, whether they draft a quarterback later this month or not?

Either way, I don’t think they’d be wrong to be sceptical. I’m sceptical. I hope Smith can be even better, confirming once and for all he’s a late-career success story rather than a one-season wonder. It’s possible though he will just be a flash in the pan. It’s hardly out of the question that in 12 months time the Seahawks will again have no contracted quarterback on the roster, no obvious future at the position, no top-five pick to address the matter properly and it could undermine everything else.

I can’t accept that a quarterback drafted at #5 would be a wasted pick. Especially if Will Anderson is already off the board. The idea that Tyree Wilson is the player to kick things up a notch, with his 75.1 PFF grade at Texas Tech (good enough for 184th among college pass rushers last year), seems ambitious.

Let’s say they draft Anthony Richardson at #5 instead. Now you have Geno Smith, busting a gut to keep his starting job. If he succeeds, you have two options next year. You can stick with Smith for another season. You can see what the trade market is for his services. You could even trade Richardson if needed, if Smith plays well enough to confirm once and for all he’s the bona fide future of Seahawks football.

Sure, you’re not getting an immediate return from your top pick in 2023. That’s where your other nine picks come in handy.

Let’s also remember — just because you take a defender at #5 doesn’t mean they’re guaranteed to have an impact this year.

Travon Walker, the #1 pick a year ago, had 3.5 sacks as a rookie. If he was in this draft, Seahawks fans would be salivating at his athletic potential and calling for him to be picked at #5. A year on from being selected, people are already wondering if the Jaguars made a mistake. His PFF grade in his final year at Georgia (69.9) was worse than Tyree Wilson’s but it’s the same ballpark.

Kayvon Thibodeaux, the fifth pick last year and a player who was being touted for greatness from his first starting season at Oregon, had four sacks as a rookie.

The other top defender taken a year ago, Aidan Hutchinson, had a fantastic rookie season. But it goes to show that for all the talk of a quarterback pick for the Seahawks having no impact — there’s no guarantee a Tyree Wilson type would fly in and suddenly hit the ground running. He might be no more than a rotational cog, needing to work out the pro-game and develop his skills.

Look at Boye Mafe. We shouldn’t forget he cost the Seahawks the #40 pick. Nobody even really talks about him. We’re all sat here talking about drafting an edge rusher to pair with Uchenna Nwosu, just so Mafe and another second rounder, Darrell Taylor, can settle into rotational roles. Would it be that surprising if Tyree Wilson similarly struggles to have an early impact for a team that hasn’t done a great job delivering impact from its high picks at edge rusher?

If they take Wilson at #5 and he experiences growing pains like Walker — and Smith struggles at quarterback this year — what will people be saying in 12 months time? With a bleak quarterback outlook and a top-five defender who failed to sizzle in year one, I suspect there’d be vocal concern.

By taking Richardson you secure against what I think can be called a worst case scenario. If Smith struggles, you have an immediate and exciting alternative who was able to sit and learn for a year. The 2024 season would be hotly anticipated as we all wait to see if Richardson can be as good as his physical talent suggests.

You wouldn’t have totally neglected the defense in the 2023 draft either, thanks to the picks at #20, #37 and #52 providing ample opportunity to improve the unit. You could realistically go into next year with some optimism.

You also create options for the future. As mentioned, you could shop Smith or even Richardson if Geno played brilliantly in 2023. If Smith plays so well that in a year you regret taking a quarterback early, I’m not sure that’s exactly a titanic problem to have. Oh no! You’ve been overly prepared at… the most important position in football. I’d say that’s certainly less of a headache than a Tyree Wilson ending up like Travon Walker, which I don’t think is unrealistic, while you have no future at QB if Smith fails to play at a great level.

I also appreciate there are various strands you could discuss here. If Smith excels and a player like Wilson plays more like Hutchinson than Walker, all will be well with the world.

I fear, though, that the Seahawks are about to embark on a mission to return to contention that is very difficult to execute. Or at least that people are touting such a plan, without offering the balance of considering why it might fail and why other plans also carry merit. The feeling being, they can essentially plug-in quarterbacks at will, create a brilliant defense and running game and everything will click.

If that’s their aim, I’d argue it’s easier to create a fantastic supporting cast surrounding a point guard QB if the quarterback is on a rookie contract. Geno’s contract is generous for 2023 but it’s worth, at its cheapest, $31.2m in 2024. They could easily, if they’re not careful, end up with an expensive quarterback and an inadequate defense to try and play the brand of football they crave. That would just lead to an average team with very little in the way of excitement for the future. Basically, they’d be another Minnesota Vikings. At best.

I’m not confident in Seattle’s ability to build a great defense when they end up getting themselves into situations like spending $40m on the safety position and struggling to fill out their defensive line with what little is left. After years of rough starts, failing to tackle properly, struggling to create consistent pressure, performing badly against the run and being too easy to play against — I need to see major, consistent improvement to believe it.

I don’t think drafting a quarterback at #5 is the only answer. As I keep saying, I think Will Anderson would be a good pick. He’ll only be available, too, if the quarterbacks go #1-4 in the draft — making them unavailable anyway. That’s besides the point though. Anderson’s tenacity, power, alpha mentality and college production hint at a player who can be very good at the next level. I’m not sure he’ll be able to copy DeMarcus Ware’s career but the comparison passes the eye test.

If Anderson is gone though, to me it makes little sense to pivot to Tyree Wilson — a 23-year-old who failed to make a mark at Texas A&M, received middling PFF grades for his performance in the Big-12, hasn’t shown an ability to provide a speed-rush and has a large number of snaps where it feels like he’s going through the motions.

The size and length are very intriguing and he has splash plays on tape. I’m sure coaches will look at his frame and believe they can work with what he has physically and turn him into a more impactful, consistent player. I don’t want to keep going back to this point but that’s exactly what the Jaguars thought about Travon Walker. The difference is, we knew what Walker’s upside was due to his outstanding combine performance. We have no testing numbers for Wilson because he’s still recovering from a foot injury.

Wilson is a classic case of a good highlights video but the game tape is far less exciting. That won’t dictate his success or failure at the next level but it tempers any excitement you might have if/when his name is called.

John Schneider mentioned last week the Seahawks had travelled to give someone a private workout. It was almost certainly Wilson. Schneider admitted previously they were due to attend the Texas Tech pro-day before heading to Gainesville to watch Anthony Richardson. They didn’t go to Texas Tech after it was announced Wilson couldn’t work out. It was also revealed that Wilson has been meeting with most of the top-10 teams in the last week.

It’d be an underwhelming pick. I fear the Seahawks will settle for it, though, if Anderson is off the board. The reports and mocks projecting Wilson at #2 or #3 and having him ranked ahead of Anderson in some cases worries me a bit. I think it’s overthinking things — just as the Jaguars did a year ago selecting Walker over Hutchinson. But it suggests there’s a lot of interest among decision makers and that if Wilson’s there at #5, they’ll trot him out with the usual chatter of friends in the league claiming it’s a great pick.

There’s nothing philosophical about my stance. I’ve consistently said I’m very comfortable going D-line or quarterback. I like Anderson. I was mocking Jalen Carter to Seattle before learning more about the adventure that has been his pre-draft process (not to mention the long list of reported issues at Georgia and a questionable love for the game).

I thought Joey Bosa was comfortably the best player in the 2016 draft. I thought Myles Garrett was the unquestionable no-brainer top pick in 2017. I thought Nick Bosa was clearly the elite player in his class in 2019. If a player of that ilk was available this year, I’d be banging the drum. Even without that level of player, I’m still making the case for Anderson.

I just think this is such a rare opportunity for Seattle that dismissing quarterback would be a mistake by the fans and more importantly the team. I’d happily take on whatever ‘risk’ it’d be to draft someone like Richardson. If he doesn’t become the next Josh Allen, I think it’s worth the shot to see if he can be. That would do more for Seattle’s Super Bowl prospects than anything else over the next 3-5 years. If they take that chance and it doesn’t come off, I wouldn’t criticise the team. How could you? Your favourite team took a chance on developing the rarest of rare athletes and it didn’t pan out. Oh well, what’s next?

As they’ve been quick to point out — when are they going to be in a position like this again? They don’t have another franchise quarterback to trade for a haul of picks. They don’t have a collapsing AFC West team to root against every week, knowing with every loss it increases the draft position of a gifted first round pick.

After this year, the Seahawks will be left to their own devices — with limited cap space, limited trade stock and likely a pick outside of the top-10. It’ll be harder to draft a top quarterback. It kind of feels like now or never, short of one day being prepared to trade a massive sum to move up like the Panthers and Niners recently.

For what it’s worth I think the following probably sums up Seattle’s process this draft season:

1. When the season ended, having watched San Francisco essentially beat the Seahawks at their own game with defense and running game, the intention was to try and close the gap between the two teams by investing a top-five pick on a defensive star. They knew they had to make changes to the defensive line.

2. I think John Schneider and Pete Carroll probably shared that view, with Schneider also intrigued by the quarterback class. When he executed the Russell Wilson trade he was surely thinking ahead about the QB’s coming up in the draft. I seriously doubt they banked on Geno Smith being the future. Smith changed the situation somewhat but Schneider will have spent a lot of time on the quarterbacks and I think the top four, plus potentially Hendon Hooker, are suitably Schneider-esque to imagine he’d have a strong interest in them. Carroll will have his own thoughts on the group and might like some and not others.

3. The situation over the defensive players shifted thanks to Jalen Carter. There were enough concerns before his legal trouble and embarrassing pro-day. The Seahawks, I suspect, already had enough info to potentially take him out of consideration. However, even if they weren’t likely to draft him, someone else might before they pick at #5. I think that’s almost certainly not going to happen now, making it harder for Anderson to fall through the cracks unless a team trades into the #3 spot.

4. I think Anthony Richardson has caught Seattle’s attention. I think he’s done that with a few teams, which is why he has official-30 visits booked in with the Raiders, Falcons, Titans and Ravens. Carroll seems to have taken a shine to him. The player himself spoke glowingly about his meeting with the Seahawks at the combine. We’ve since had reports of Schneider having extensive conversations with Richardson’s agent, while Carroll had an audience with Billy Napier. The personality, charisma, unlimited physical talent and the massive upside — I think — is intriguing Seattle more than they possibly expected. Like I say, I don’t think they’re the only team experiencing this.

5. For a while I’ve thought this was going to come down to ‘who lasts to #5?’. Will it be Anderson or Richardson? I’ve seen people talking recently about Tyree Wilson, noting, fairly, that bigger players of that size (such as Aldon Smith) have played in a 3-4 at OLB. I must admit, it made me pause. They might just talk themselves into this. Then when I watch the tape, I’m reminded of my concerns. If they draft him, obviously I hope he succeeds at an extreme level. I do fear, though, that they might be so defensively focused that they take Wilson — enamoured by his size — and simply can’t elevate him to the level they hope. After all, Aldon Smith had Vic Fangio coaching him. The Seahawks might be influenced by Fangio’s scheme but they’ve shown minimal ability to execute it so far. Maybe it’s recency bias on my behalf but I have a horrible thought of Wilson being the 2023 version of Mafe — an older rookie losing reps to someone else, with Carroll fending off weekly questions about why he isn’t more involved.

I suppose this is all just a long-winded way to say I think it’s still important for the Seahawks to be open-minded about drafting a quarterback. Plus, I’m sceptical about Wilson but I’m admitting I should include him in any discussion about the #5 pick moving forward.

After all, as we’ve already said a numerous times in the last few weeks, they attended the Ohio State, Alabama, Kentucky and Florida pro-days. They intended to attend the Texas Tech pro-day too, during that little road-trip.

The players involved in those pro-days:

C.J. Stroud
Bryce Young
Will Anderson
Will Levis
Anthony Richardson
Tyree Wilson

Seattle’s pick is going to come from that group, I’m very confident about that. I think the road trip was deliberate. Rather than any convoluted smokescreen, I suspect the Seahawks were simply doing manageable homework on a very important pick and getting every scrap of information they can. Unlike when you’re picking in the 20’s, you can narrow your focus to five pro-days because only four players will leave the board before you pick. You can’t attend 35 pro-days to cover all the possibilities with the 25th pick.

With the expectation the first two picks are Stroud and Young, and Levis being drafted by the Colts, Anderson or Richardson is realistic and is my preference for the Seahawks. Wilson could also be an option but an underwhelming one, at least for me.

Tomorrow I’m going to attempt to create another A+ draft — with a quarterback taken at #5.

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  1. Rob Staton

    FYI — I sat down to write a quick follow up to yesterday’s article

    This ended up being a 4200 word behemoth 😂

    • Trevor

      Absolutely loved this and how you walked us through your thought process. Great stuff and can’t really argue with any of it. Tend to agree QBOF or Will Anderson is the ideal outcome. For me the only disappoint on your list would be Wilson who’s tape I find incredibly uninspiring.

      Thanks again and this piece is a must read for all Hawks fans particularly any that have been critical of your takes / opinions on Carter and the QBs etc.

      • Rob Staton

        Thanks again and this piece is a must read for all Hawks fans particularly any that have been critical of your takes / opinions on Carter and the QBs etc.

        It’s a shame many won’t read it

        • Jesse W.

          I did! Checking everyday for new content. Agree with you, Richardson is 1a for me and Anderson would be a splendid consolation prize. Levis is #2 for me at 5. Even with his concerns, from the majority, Seattle fans will love him. Good dude who plays to pay the iron price.

        • Elmer

          I read it all and share the opinions you have expressed about QB’s and about Carter. For the sake of discussion, let’s assume for the moment that for whatever reason they do not select a QB at #5. In that eventuality do you think that there is a reasonable chance that they will select a QB at some later point in the draft?

          Also: My brain says no, my heart says no, but my gut feels that there is greater than a 0.5% chance that they take Carter with their first pick.

          • Rob Staton

            I’m not sure why.

            A player with a questionable love for the game, terrible practise habits, not been that bothered about taking his career seriously, major conditioning issues that are self provoked, legal issues, making the same mistakes leading to those issues.

            Hardly screams ‘always compete’. Hardly screams Carroll guy. Hardly chimes with what they said about the 2022 class they had and the importance of character and maturity and work ethic.

            • Elmer

              Rationally I agree totally. I hope that the little feeling in my gut is completely wrong.

              • Rob Staton

                What’s giving you a gut feeling that they will?

                Because the above is all true

        • JamesSelvin

          Why do you say this? I was under the impression site views have been up a ton, as well as streams. This is like the 275th comment on this article alone – I feel like quite a few people are reading your hard work!

          • Rob Staton

            There are still a lot of very vocal people (I know because they often send me tweets) who would rather drink their own piss than ready my articles

            • JamesSelvin

              I’m sorry to hear that, Rob. Unfortunately, it appears in this case the vocal minority is being quite vocal, but I am also confident they are in the vast minority. I – and many others – very much appreciate the countless hours work you put in, as well as the objective approach you take.

              • Rob Staton

                Appreciate it

    • Malanch

      Rob, you’ve been consistent in mocking Will Levis to the Colts on account of Chris Ballard’s history and Levis’s year-one readiness, which would be most serendipitous for the Seahawks if their Anthony Richardson love is legit. However, I keep thinking any GM would have difficulty choosing Levis over Richardson. In terms of floor-to-ceiling projection, I don’t see the two as particularly close—what am I missing?

      • Rob Staton

        Levis is an outstanding athlete in his own right

        The Colts, and specifically Ballard, don’t have time to wait for a QB to sit and learn

        They need someone who can be ready quickly. That’s Levis, not Richardson

        • Malanch

          The logic is there, no doubt. I just struggle to envision Richardson’s availability at #5, probably because I’ve pedestalized him. Admittedly, he’s my biggest draft crush since Russell Wilson…and Aaron Curry before that. (Gulp.)

          • Rob Staton

            Someone could very easily trade up to #3 to get him

            But I doubt the Colts select him over Levis

            • Chris

              What do Colts do if someone other than us trades to 3 and swipes Levis?

              • Rob Staton

                No idea

                But I don’t expect that

    • 509 Chris

      Most guys just yak into a camera for you tube. We’re a smarter breed of fan around here and appreciate the written word. In all seriousness thanks for what you do Rob!

      • Rob Staton

        Thank you 👍🏻

  2. LouCityHawk

    Great follow up, imagine how much you have written not on vacation…

    A curious thing about the National/premier media group think towards the Seahawks pick at #5.

    It started at Carter, and some still have it there. The first migration was to Wilson, and som still have him there. The next horse they switched to is the trade down scenario. And now more and more are saying, what if this is the year they go CB at 1, they’ve never had an opportunity at this type of prospect before…

    This almost feels like me watching my kids trying get around to chores when they were younger, do anything else under the Sun other than clean their bathroom.

    The sheer level of resistance is fascinating.

    • PJ in Seattle

      I heard some hack on CBS Sports radio yesterday while I was driving to the store. He said: “If I’m Seattle, I don’t need a quarterback. If Will Anderson’s gone, trade the pick for a R1 next year from one of these team’s that’s desperate for one. The Eagles did that since they wanted to see what they had with Hurts, and it worked out well for them. You can get your quarterback next year if you need to.”

      So trade down to the late tens or teens, take Jalen Carter or Myles Murphy or defensive BPA and bank a R1 pick for next year.

      This was said with all sincerity and seriousness.

      • Jhams

        If we miss out on Richardson I’d prefer we trade down for a 24 R1. I don’t like Levis as much as some, Anderson’s biggest fans always start with the “Now he’s not that special but” caveat, Wilson is a projection, Carter is DT Jamarcus Russel etc.

      • Mel

        That guy was most certainly a hack. Exactly who did the Eagles pass on at QB to “get a better look at Hurts?” The QBs were awful last year. If we’re talking the 21 draft, they traded back and were still in a position to draft Fuelds, who was just Hurts again. The fact that each trade partner they were involved with didn’t use the pick acquired to select a QB shows that guy was full of it. Then again, based on literally any of the mocks over there at CBS, I don’t see how those guys can tie their shoes, much less formulate a coherent argument

  3. Trevor

    Rob your article yesterday got me thinking about non QB draft options so I Did a mock on the PFN simulator and the draft went.

    1. Stroud
    2. Anderson
    3. Richardson
    4. Levis

    Then the Texans offered 12, 33 and a pick next year to move up for Young.

    Also traded back to #24 from 20 and picked up a 3rd round pick.

    Tried to be realistic with the ranges even if the simulator was being generous. Would absolutely love this draft for the Hawks.

    #12 Devon Witherspoon- The Hawks get a heart and soul player for the secondary. Perhaps the toughest player in the draft. Witherspoon and Woolen could be the top duo in the league for the balance of the decade.

    #24 Michael Mayer- one of best players in the entire draft falls to the Hawks at 24 and gives them a stud in both the pass and run game. Geno gets his elite 3rd receiving option.

    #33 Will McDonald- he does not get the hype of the other big name edge rushers but just might end up being the best. Explosive and had an incredible ablility to bend around the edge. He is a legit doible digit sack guy.

    #37 Mazi Smith – If you are going to run the 3-4 effectively it helps to have a stud NT. The Hawks get one and solidify the middle of the run defense.

    #52 Sydney Brown- great athelte and another heart and soul type player. By adding Witherspoon and Brown to the secondary they truly can become the LOB 2.0 but a lot faster. Woolen, Bryant, Love, Brown and Witherspoon would be young and incredible IMO.

    #83 Luke Wypler- Hawks get their Center for the future.

    #88 Israel Abanikanda – A freak RB who would be a steal here and day 1 starter if not for Walker. Would give the Hawks a dynamic 1-2 punch at RB

    #123 Moro Ojomo- incredibly under rated and ideal base DE in the 3-4. Would be ideal rotational piece for the DL.

    #151 Dorian Williams- Athletic and rugged LB who could come in and learn behind Bobby with the idea of starting next year.

    #153 Andrew Vorhees- tore his ACL at the combine but he is an ideal fit at G for the Hawks and after a red shirt year could start next season.

    #198 Chris Rodriguez- They add a tough nose power back.

    #237 Matt Landers- big athletic WR who can fly. Great on special teams with the potential to make the roster.

    I absolutely loved this draft for the Hawks. If they can’t get Richardson or Anderson this would be a perfect Plan B.

    • Malanch

      So…you have PCJS saying ‘no’ to a blue-chip player at the most important position in football—presumably for size-related reasons—but then moving waaay down into the second tier for an undersized corner? Heck of a way to start a mock.

      • diehard82

        Ouch. Witherspoon is average height and arm length, and yes on the light side at 180 lb. But he also had the best NFL passer rating against of 25.3 in all the FBS. And despite his weight he is a violent hitter. Rob grades him at Rd 1-2. Could be instant upgrade to Jackson. But we will probably never know.

        • Malanch

          Add the number of hard-hitting 180-pounders in the NFL to the number of corners PCJS have drafted higher than #90, and that’s how I’d score your Witherspoon pick. After that, however, it’s as solid a mock as anything I’ve come up with. Nice job on the realism.

  4. Huggie Hawks

    Agree 💯 on Wilson, and it makes me barf a little to see him so frequently mocked to Hawks. Would be a deflating pick for me.

    • Rob Staton

      Deflating, underwhelming, boring, unexciting

      Some of the words I would go with

      • Peter

        As the good ship keion white sails away from me I’d literally be gutted to see Wilson as the pick. Even though the team cleary has zero interest so far in my draft crush when viewed as a pure numbers exercise why would you take Wilson at five when you can have the same, nearly the sanme, or same enough results from a few different players a full round later.

        Whether it’s ade ade, white, Pickens, benton….it makes no sense to draft in a different draft a player who would most likely be deemed a reach so high.

        Qb, Anderson, or bust for this fan.

      • Wilson502

        How about dumpster 🔥? Tyree Wilson at 5 is a borderline fireable offense. Complete waste of a once in a generation opportunity.

    • Malanch

      Assuming Tyree Wilson’s clearance to resume training has been finalized (April 5th–10th was the projected window), where do you guys think Wilson should go, more in the #6–10 range? Outside the top ten? Outside the first round? I can’t peg him at all.

      • Peter

        Around #20. Not necessarily to us. But I just haven’t seen the greater value than a few others.

        I said before bit I think he’ll be a very valuable player. I just don’t know from stats, a few games, and as of yet no eye popping testing that he’s a top five lock.

  5. JimN

    I just love when you get on a roll Rob! There doesn’t seem to be any real consensus on what price the Hawks would have to pay to get to #3. ANy thoughts there? It seems like the #5 pick would be worth a lot more to AZ than any other IF they knew Hawks were hedging their QB and wouldn’t be picking Anderson. THus AZ gets more draft picks and their original pick too. Trading anywhere else would nix that pick. So i would think the Hawks have some kind of leverage in their discussions with them in this regard.

    I do trust JS in his QB evaluations. I also believe that their was a “plan” for a QB replacement when Wilson was traded. It seems JS isn’t motivated by all the media talk so i don’t have any real fear he will be influenced by all the media hype. In fact, i think he is a master at using that for his own advantage.

    By far, this has been the best draft season i have followed. Your content, even on vacation is just the bes!

    • Rob Staton

      If they like a QB enough to trade up, I’m on board with any price. Back yourselves.

      Likewise if they ‘have to have’ Will Anderson. Do it.

      No point being at #5 to watch the guy to want go before you select

      • Wilson502

        Pay the iron price. I can guarantee if they don’t and don’t come away with a QBOTF, then they will regret it the rest of their careers especially if it leads us into QB purgatory because they didn’t take a chance when they had one.

      • Phil

        Instead of accepting whoever falls to them at #5, I just hope that JS has the courage of his convictions to do what he wants without concerns of being wrong or being second guessed. My favorite Chuck Knox quote is “faint heart never won fair lady.” This is the year to move up to get Richardson — the Seahawks are in the entertainment business and the fans will love to see Geno grooming his successor.

        • Wilson502

          Same here, Im tired of this hopium (lets hope falls to us!) Screw that, be bold and take a chance. Pay the damn iron price.

          • Wilson502

            *(Lets hope x QB falls to us)

  6. One Bad Mata’afa

    Rewind to a little over a year ago, and seahawk fans would be anticipating a current debate on how to utilize our normal mid-to-late round first round pick. Guess what, we still have that pick (20). Being gifted an unexpected 5th pick in a good QB class is close to a dream scenarios, especially for a mid-tier football team with no long-term QB answer on the roster. If JS likes Anderson and thinks his value outweighs the benefit of the available QBs, great. If you like a QB or three, here’s your rare chance to be aggressive, and you STILL have plenty of ammo to draft a solid-to-great class

  7. Troy

    You’ve laid it out beautifully that many of us are thinking, and a QB unicorn in the modern game is the purest difference maker. Richardson has Seahawk written all over him.

    (credit Matt Waldman) Elevator Pitch: Imagine a quarterback who is as fast as Justin Fields, but 17 pounds heavier, has a vertical explosion of 40 inches and has a more nuanced understanding of how to manipulate coverage despite playing 12 fewer games in college. What about a passer with arm talent on par with Josh Allen but with more consistent pocket management and smarter pass placement than Allen had in college? Until Richardson came along, you wouldn’t have dared.

    And if that’s not enough, consider that Richardson is one of the most impressive learners on and off the field that his quarterback coach Will Hewlett has seen—including Hewlett’s recent success story, Brock Purdy. The best way to visualize Richardson’s comparison spectrum isn’t a straight line but that of a pyramid with Richardson the top point and the other players’ feeding into his game from either side of the spectrum. He’s a unique amalgamation of player styles.

    For those of you who can’t get past the 58 percent completion rate, interceptions, and untimely errors, consider that the nature of Richardson’s errors are more akin to problems that we saw with the likes of Matthew Stafford, Patrick Mahomes, Andrew Luck, and Ben Roethlisberger. If they were the type of errors linked to Drew Lock, Zach Wilson, and Baker Mayfield, there would be reason for concern.

    • Rob Staton

      A wonderful review, thanks for sharing

    • ErickV

      Well said , shout-out Matt Waldman as he provided one of the only analyses of Richardson that showcase how he’s much more than simply an athlete. He processes really well and does a great job at avoiding sacks. One of the things people fail to remember is that Richardson’s only 20 years old, he’s going to get better especially with the right coaching staff.

  8. KennyBadger

    If the pick is a qb, I will be elated.
    If it’s Anderson, I will be happy.
    If it’s Wilson, I will be ill.

    If it’s carter, I will be leaving flaming bags of poop on John and Pete’s doorsteps. Big ones. And lots.

    • Blitzy the Clown

      That’s pretty close to me

      Elated for one of the QBs
      Disappointed but sanguine if it’s Anderson
      Disappointed if it’s anyone else

      I appreciate Rob’s strong sense of journalistic objectivity.

      I’ve no such hinderance: I doubt very much Schneider and Carroll will have had their eyes so focused on Anderson and the QBs for so long — going back to last offseason when they kicked off this chapter of their franchise stewardship — only to be seduced by Tyree Wilson on the eve of the draft.

      I don’t care that they went to work him out privately. I wouldn’t expect them to do anything less than run down every possible permutation of what they might do with their first pick.

      But facts are facts:

      If Anderson goes in the top 4, Seattle are guaranteed one of the QBs.

      If all the QBs go top 4, they’re guaranteed Anderson.

      I don’t see them making any other choice, except potentially to trade up for the player they want, rather than settle for the player that falls.

      No offense to Rob at all. I really enjoyed this article and appreciate his thoroughness to consider all possibilities.

  9. bmseattle

    I know that Rob has stayed consistent with the “stick and pick” philosophy at #5, and I tend to agree…unless the pick is Wilson.
    If they simply refuse to go QB, and Anderson isn’t available, I’d be forced to admit that a trade down is our best option.

    • Rob Staton

      I know that Rob has stayed consistent with the “stick and pick” philosophy at #5, and I tend to agree…unless the pick is Wilson.

      I’m comfortable with it

      But I wouldn’t say consistent — I’m open to moving up

  10. Steve c

    You seem focused on comparing Anderson with Richardson at #5. What if Richardson is gone? What if Levis is available at #5? Would you take him over Wilson. What if Stroud, Richardson, Levis and Anderson are gone, would you take Young at maybe 190 lbs over Wilson?

    • Rob Staton

      Given all we know, it seems Indy is focused on taking Levis at #4

      — Mortensen stating Levis won’t get out of the top-five
      — Indy needing a QB who can start in 2023
      — Levis is a Chris Ballard type QB
      — The fact Indy didn’t seem that active in trade talks for #1 suggests they were comfortable with all four QB’s

      To answer your question, I would happily draft Young or Levis over Wilson

      • Dharma Dan

        Some people contend that quarterbacks with truly elite running skills are easier to start earlier on. You can lean on their running ability to stay competitive and even win games, as they hone their craft throughout the season and following offseason.

        I understand why people view Richardson as “needing to sit a year,” and I would agree from what little I know. But I don’t think it’s outlandish to suggest that some people, potentially including pretty savvy people like Chris Ballard, actually view Richardson as closer to starting material right now than Levis, despite Levis’s superior accuracy, greater experience, and experience in a pro-style system.

        It’s not a *fact* that Levis would win you more games right away than Richardson would. It’s an opinion. A well-informed opinion of course, but not written in stone and passed down by the gods. It’s very plausible some decision makers could see it the other way around, including the Colts.

        • Rob Staton

          There’s more than just readiness to start though connecting Levis to Indy

  11. Big Mike

    A quick throat clearing — you’ll notice that none of those teams had a Vic Fangio inspired defensive system in 2022.


    There wasn’t a single point you brought up that I disagreed with Rob.
    Wilson is not the right choice. Don’t screw this up Pete and John. It’s a QB or Anderson. Period!

    By the way, interesting that you brought Hutchinson up. I was thinking yesterday that Anderson could be a similar guy for the Hawks as in really, really good but just not quite a Bosa, Garrett et. al. I’ll be disappointed of all 4 QBs are gone, we don’t trade up and we get Anderson. But, I do believe he’ll be a helluva player for quite a number of years.

    • Rob Staton

      I think that’s a good way of looking at Anderson. He’ll be different because they’re different players — but his impact might be similar

      • Blitzy the Clownq

        I’ve been on a multi season roller coaster with Anderson. Two seasons ago I thought he might be the best EDGE prospect since Miller. I thought he was destined to be a #1 overall pick. The idea of even being in a position to draft him would have been laughable to me.

        But then his otherworldly sack and TFL numbers regressed to more (relatively speaking) pedestrian levels. And suddenly Seattle found themselves in the hunt for Russell Wilson’s replacement courtesy of Denver’s collapsed season. And there were 4 — count em four! — QBs in this class who might be worthy of Wilson’s legacy.

        But since then I’ve come back to Anderson as a truly excellent (if not exceptional) prospect worthy of being Seattle’s first pick. I think if any one defensive prospect could help impact the defense in a meaningful way in 2023, it’s Anderson.

        I still prefer a QB. But I’ll take Anderson.

  12. cha

    If they take Wilson at #5 and he experiences growing pains like Walker — and Smith struggles at quarterback this year — what will people be saying in 12 months time? With a bleak quarterback outlook and a top-five defender who failed to sizzle in year one, I suspect there’d be vocal concern.

    On SDB, yes.

    Other sites, not so much.

    • Big Mike

      Sadly, very likely

    • Wilson502

      It’s no guarantee that Anderson wouldn’t struggle either.

      • cha

        It’s more likely the source of his struggle would come from misuse by the staff than by his NFL readiness.

        Tyree, not so much.

      • Wilson502

        While what u say is likely true, the end result ends up being the same. Which brings me back to the same place, the FO Will regret it for the rest of their careers if they don’t take a shot at getting a QB this yr.

      • Malanch

        “It’s no guarantee that Anderson wouldn’t struggle either.” –W502

        Yeah, part of me keeps imagining that Tennessee game multiplied by 17.

    • LouCityHawk

      I’ve been surprised how fickle fans have become.

      The same guy pounding the table for Jalen Carter might be first in line with a pitchfork at the first sign of trouble or underperformance.

      • Malanch

        You’re surprised at the fickleness of fans? Why? Do you know what “fan” is short for?

  13. Zin

    Regardless of whether Seattle is setting up this draft to meet immediate, intermediate or future need, it is unequivocally crucial to understand the value that you lose when you don’t draft a quarterback in the first round. This article on fivethirtyeight, while dated, is still relevant to our discussion:

    If you look at the table in the middle of the article and the accompanying text, it is clear that “QBs are king. In fact, quarterbacks are so valuable that if you’re a GM who’s not in a position to draft one in the first round, your job changes dramatically. When all the viable first-round QBs are off the board, your task effectively becomes one of loss minimization. Rather than attempting to pick the right players — which is a largely futile exercise anyway — or focusing on need or best player available, GMs can most effectively increase the expected value of their picks by selecting players at the highest value non-QB positions. If you can’t increase your hit rate through better evaluation, it’s best to simply take your shots at the most valuable positions and hope you get lucky.”

    And, while there will always be exceptions (see the next table in the article in relation to the RB picks), more often than not, the value returned from a top-10 pick is too poor if it is not spent on a QB, LT, or WR.

    • Wilson502

      I can definitely see the argument they try to make there and it’s why I’m so adamant they get a QB, preferably trading up to get one instead of relying on hopium. If we take Anderson and he is mediocre his first yr, we will be kicking ourselves for eternity wondering why we didn’t trade up for a QB when we had the chance? QB purgatory will be a terrible place to be and I’m afraid that will be the case if we end up stuck with Anderson.

    • Chris

      Article’s overall message seems alright, but it’s still a pretty flawed article. If all NFL teams followed its advice then at pick 20 we’d be picking the 20th best QB prospect since every team picking before that, including ourselves, would’ve already selected a QB. Things like value and need can’t be completely ignored like the article suggests. And QBs do already get over-selected because of position, seems the real takeaway from that article is that this should maybe be done even moreso.

      It also seems odd to use median market contracts to evaluate position value at the same time they argue teams are misjudging positional value during the draft.

  14. cha

    Tomorrow I’m going to attempt to create another A+ draft — with a quarterback taken at #5.

    Can I add a degree of challenge?

    You cannot take any of the players you took in the last A+ draft.

    I regularly do this when I do PFN. Forces me to evaluate other possibilities.

    • Rob Staton

      I’ve already failed that challenge I’m afraid 🙂

      But I was so happy with the haul I’m not doing it again 🙂

  15. Quinn

    Rob, I think the new talking point among fans and media is the idea of trading back. They don’t give thought to what team would want to move up and the compensation. And they talk about moving back in such a matter of fact tone. I think people get so caught up on the unrealistic trade scenarios on PFN and PFF’s mock draft simulators. “We can move from 5 to 7 and get three first round picks?! Oh yeah, easy choice!”

    In reality though, if moving down for a second rounder or even more was routinely offered, you would see a lot more trades in the top 10. But history says trades in that range are before the draft usually starts and teams usually stick and pick otherwise. Would people really want to move down for the sake of moving down even if a team throws a lowball offer (like a third rounder)?

    • Rob Staton

      I’d love for these people to explain who you’re trading down for.

      An upgrade at guard?

      A non-elite level cornerback?

      A running back or tight end?

      You’d be trading into a range where the value, to put it bluntly, would be crap — all for the chance of extra stock when you already have 10 picks.

      You own a top-five pick for the first time ever under PCJS — let’s use it and make the most of it.

      • Quinn

        Exactly! Teams seem to be much smarter now and know they don’t need to overpay in a trade around that area. So much of the idea of trades is media-driven, it feels like there are 20 trades projected and ultimately only 3 or 4 actually happen.

        Rob, if the Seahawks were to stick at 5 and select someone like Will McDonald or even Nolan Smith with Anderson off the board, I honestly would be happy that they passed on Wilson. Would I be mad that they passed on a QB of the future? Absolutely. But Wilson is literally the baseball equivalent of keeping the bat on your shoulder and hoping for a walk rather than trying to swing for the fences.

      • Hawkdawg

        How could the draft fall so Wilson would be the necessary pick (out of the Rob list of top Hawk candidates)? If all 4 QBs go 1-4, then it’s Anderson. If one of the QBs doesn’t get picked, then it’s that one. The only way Wilson comes into the picture is if one of the 4 QBs is still there and the Hawks pick Wilson instead.

        My own concern is that the Hawks would pick three of them before Wilson–Stroud, Young or Richardson–but I don’t have a sense on Levis. There is data from Schneider’s past that suggest he might pick Levis, I understand that. But I haven’t heard much post-workout on him…in fact, Richardson is the one I’ve heard the most about…and if you agree with the consensus that Young and Stroud in some order are the best and safest picks, and Richardson’s potential has the Hawks enamored, what happens if Levis is the one left at #5?

        • Rob Staton

          I’m wary that Wilson seems to have a lot of buzz among some league people. I haven’t spoken to my source about him but will do. If the buzz is legit, Seattle might be one of the teams that loves him. They wanted to go to that Texas Tech pro-day for a reason.

          • Wilson502

            Tyree Wilson would be the worst use of a top 5 pick ever. Dunno how u can even seriously consider him. What does Tyree Wilson do to elevate this team? My argument is he would do jack squat to elevate this team. Even Anderson wouldn’t elevate this team much assuming hes at least somewhat productive.

          • Blitzy the Clown

            I think Wilson is very much the flavor du jour, like we’ve seen in previous drafts (though specific examples elude me at the moment), who’s getting disproportionate hype based mostly on his measurables and at best slightly on his game tape.

            Anderson is as bluechip as they come. I just don’t see Seattle passing on him for Wilson.

            I don’t know about the QBs. I’d like to think Schneider and Carroll see more empirical evidence to suggest the top 4 prospects will be more successful at their position than the evidence they see for Tyree being successful at his.

            Then throw in the inherent value of QB over OLB, and the way Schneider sounded utterly noncommittal and almost perfunctory in his offhand remark about how the mystery prospect handled the workout/interview well, and it gets difficult for me to believe they’d buy into any of this home stretch hype about Wilson.

            But stranger things have happened

          • cha

            I wasn’t paying much attention to it until Lance Z dropped Tyree at #2 to Houston.

            That would be a dream. Doubles the options for Seattle.

      • Chris

        If there is a bigger talent dropoff than normal, which seems to be true at #5 this year, then the trade offer should be larger than normal as well. Regular draft charts from the past should be underestimating what #5 is worth this year. A slipping Anderson/Richardson could be very intriguing for other teams, not just Seattle.

    • Phil

      I think that folks who consistently want to move down for more picks have lost sight that the actual objective for the draft is not just to pick more players, but to pick players that are going to provide the best impact for the amount of draft capital expended. The aim is to win football games, not to accumulate draft picks.

      • Peter

        Phil coming in with some straight facts as to what purpose the draft serves.

  16. DawgyD

    This is a great counterpoint to the “no quarterback” crowd. It’s not whether we need one to sit, it’s that is where the value is. Case in point Bijan R, top five talent but the value isn’t there in the top five of the draft. (recall the saints and Ditka trading their entire draft for Ricky Williams).

    One scenario if the Qb’s go first is grab Anderson then go Hooker at 20, thereby getting both needs met R1. I know Rob you are reticent to elevate him due to scheme but perhaps John and Pete see enough that he could also sit and learn (and heal) for a year. Due to QB value, it might work to get him at 20 instead of hoping he falls to the second round.

    In the D and SF, perhaps a least a good defense I.e. top ten and a balanced potent O. Hit on multiple D picks over the next 2-3 years like they did with woolen.

    Thank you for all the excellent analysis Rob, I gather all my thought at draft time around your insights and SDB, really appreciate you work.

    • Big Mike

      If all 4 QBs are gone, we don’t trade up AND we get Anderson, I could live with a shot at the QB position by drafting Hooker at #20.

    • Rob Staton

      I just think there are so many better players for 20 than Hooker and it’d be a big, big reach — the kind they are saying they wish to avoid.

      Appreciate the kind words 👍

    • BK26

      Then you are more or less drafting a younger Geno. Still isn’t doing enough to elevate the team for any long-term plan.

      Just as a fact: if he is drafted in the first round, his contract will be up when he is 30. So we are dealing with paying for that (if he is even worth top market) for a 30 year old. Right back where we started.

  17. Beacon of half truth

    Looking forward to your next mock.

  18. no frickin clue


    I think the divide amongst your readership on what to do at #5 is mainly determined by one question:

    How patient are you willing to be for another championship?

    I think the readership that pines for Anderson, Wilson or Carter is:
    – hoping for a strike-it-rich season in 2023
    – talking themselves into Geno being the answer at QB
    – using major capital to transform the D in 2023

    Conversely, the readership that pines for any of Stroud, Young, Levis or Richardson is:
    – willing to see 2023 as merely a step in the right direction, even if the guy you pick doesn’t play this year
    – not talking themselves into Geno being the answer at QB
    – pessimistic on odds of getting a franchise QB in any given season, so take a shot now
    – try the best you can for impact defenders later on. Defense still a priority, just not top priority


    • Rob Staton

      I think the question is more — how close do you think the Seahawks are?

      And for me, they aren’t close. As I said in the piece, whether it’s Anderson or a QB at five — we should be treating this as merely phase two of a rebuild.

    • Peter

      No frickin you hit a lot of my thoughts.

      Will dovetail with Rob here.

      No snark. Just straight facts. Are we actually close? Does 9-8 and a series of sneaks into tge playoffs make us closer, further, or worse obfuscate what we all watched last season.

      Moments of great offense. Moments of stalked offense. And a really, really bleak defensive performance the majority of the year. I mean comical historic levels of goof ups and performance in spots.

      Geno. What a story. But Lockett gets a little injured. Abe gets a little injured. Same with Walker and the offense stalls. I’m not at all blaming geno. I think he showed a lot last year and to a sense his limitations. We need to be right here. Objectively he played with the best offense assembled in years but bluntly I did not see any elevation beyond obstacles.

      Josh allen is the bills. The alpha and omega. A lot of pundits thought the chiefs might suck last year and they said no tyreke hill? No problem.

      The year before Joe burrow got waxed every game by his oline and still forced that team to the superbowl.

      I think unless you are so over built everywhere else you might need that in this league.

      • no frickin clue

        Can’t disagree at all here. Geno was a pleasant surprise in first half of year, came back to earth a bit in second half. The team was far more watchable than I was expecting it to be. But we have a long way to go from ‘watchable’ to ‘serious contender’.

        And as you point out, a supernova-type QB can do a lot of the heavy lifting. Without one of those, almost everything else has to go right.

    • Malanch

      Nicely encapsulated, nfc. Your and Rob’s takes on “the question” at root are essentially two sides of the same coin, and I’d pose a directly related third question: Should the Hawks prioritize BPA or need at #5?

      Given that BPA factors positional value, I know where I sit on this one.

      • Rob Staton

        I don’t think it’s BPA or need at #5

        I think it’s merely a case of a QB or Anderson makes the most sense

  19. EIEIO

    I am not so worried about the prospect of Seattle picking Wilson with the #5 selection. I’d go so far as to say it’s 99.5% not going to happen. During on of the early podcasts with JS on the Wyman & Bob Show, I recall Dave Wyman specifically asking Schneider if he paid any attention to the media analysts and drat pundits. Schneider has a sharp with and he said something to the effect, “…you mean guys like you? Naw!” Schneider and Carroll and NFL executives of their ilk are pro’s pros. While the media gurus might be trumpeting guys like Carter and Wilson to Seattle in ad infinitum, PC/JS will do their own evaluation, unencumbered by media bias. For all we know, if they were privately working-out Wilson, they might be considering him for their #20 selection. That might make sense if they select a QBoTF at #5 (or lower if they trade up). On Thursday’s podcast, Schneider said they were pretty much done with traveling to view players and would now be meeting with their area scouts and completing their big board. He also said they try to anticipate any and every possible eventuality so that they don’t have to scramble in response to something unexpected. I think that’s an important comment to focus upon because it says they have a clear PLAN. As Rob has pointed out repeatedly, PC/JS did not go into last season thinking Geno would out-perform expectations or become their long term answer at QB. I believe that holds true going into the 2023 Draft. They had their eye on this year’s QB class for their long term QBoTF. That was their PLAN. It is still their plan. The Jalen Carter situation threw them and everyone else a curveball and there’s no guarantee one of the 4 QBs will be there at #5. In that case they will take Anderson. However, it is my belief they will have fine-tuned their plan and now have a specific target in their cross-hairs. It’s the same for all the other teams. It’s about to get interesting, boys! Don’t be surprised if Seattle trades UP in the next two weeks, if not sooner.

    • Big Mike

      EIEIO: you giving me serious hope man. Hoping you’re right about a trade. Solid logic in your post, that’s for sure.

    • Rob Staton

      Well, some people are mocking Wilson at #2 or #3.

      There’s at least some buzz that people in the league really like him

      • Phil

        Or is it that “people in the league” are hoping that other teams will really like him?

    • SalukiHawk12

      One of Pete’s draft clues in 22 was literally ‘Next year’. As they passed on Malik Willis and the other QBs numerous times, it’s pretty obvious what that insinuated.

      • Rob Staton

        It’s a fair point, I’d forgotten about that

      • cha

        They also brought in QB Levi Lewis last summer.

        He’s short.

        He’s left handed.

        He doesn’t have a strong arm.

        He’s the anagram lover’s Will Levis. His reverse image.

      • Geoff u

        Nah, that was just Pete starting up the smoke machine early


      • Malanch

        I thought the Carroll clues were purely goofballish red herrings. That one is interesting, though…

  20. diehard82

    Great summation Rob. You know one thing that keeps nagging at me is look at how many starters are under contract beyond 2023, it’s pretty scary. We have 10 picks in the draft, little money to spend, and excluding Diggs and Adams and special teams, only 12 starters under contract for 2024. And I’m counting Love, Coby Bryant and Jarran Reed. They need Mafe and others to step up big, and they need to hit on more than just a handful of future starters in this draft. Right now there are no C/G starters signed beyond 2023. Taking 2 or 3 in this draft seems prudent. Likewise only 1 oft-injured TE. 1 or even 2 seems prudent. There goes 3-5 of the 10 picks. And unless Eskridge or Young step up to WR3, prob gotta grab at least 1 WR. Another RB or even 2. And we haven’t even started looking at Defense. We need another A+ draft like last year. No doubt. Unless Mayer, Wright, Robinson, Skoronski or Branch falls all the way to 20, I suspect trading down 5-10 spots may be in the cards for a couple more Rd 3-4 picks.

    Last thing, I can’t see Cards trading out of 3 unless Texans takes Anderson, except just swapping picks with Colts. If someone trading up to 3 gets the QB the Colts wanted, they could pivot and take Anderson. And for all the reasons you have so eloquently stated, I doubt Wilson would be seen as an acceptable consolation. If the draft then goes as you predict, Hawks “swing away” with Richardson, settle for Tyree, shock us all with another pick, or trade down 2-5 spots and grab a top corner prospect (uncharacteristic) or Skoronski or Wright to compete at either guard or tackle spots. They do have a history of spending 1st round picks on Tackles.

    • Malanch

      “…look at how many starters are under contract beyond 2023, it’s pretty scary.”

      The Seahawks’ heavy reliance on short-term contracts and steady refusal to backload deals suggest a cashflow confinement related to the impending sale of the franchise. Presently, each step forward seems to cost a corresponding step backward; one position group is filled out while another is gouged out. Until new ownership establishes willingness to structure contracts as necessary to make a championship run, we could be looking at a few years of treading water.

  21. geoff u

    Despite defensive player of the year Hutchinson, Detroit ranked 28th in defense in 2022 and gave up 25 points per game. A very slight improvement over 2021. Seattle ranked 21st and gave up 23.5 points per game. They were worse than us, despite our cake schedule, and people really think a player not as good as Hutchinson is going to get us to the Super Bowl? With a most likely harder schedule and regressing Geno? No.

    I know Seattle’s doing their due diligence on Tyree, and I hope that’s all that is, because for me it’s down to five players. The four quarterbacks or Anderson. If the QBs are gone, I’d almost rather trade down for a 1st rounder next year and try again for a QB next year (don’t care if we have to package them next year to trade up and get someone). Of course I’d much rather spend less and trade up for a QB this year, but i’m not confident that’ll happen.

    And with all due respect to our horrible defense, it was Geno Smith’s fumble at the end of the third quarter that turned the tide in the playoff game. Had we scored and kept going tit for tat, we’d of had a chance. He then went 4 plays and out and then thew an interception. In a game against a superior opponent, you have no margin for error. In fact, you need the QB to elevate the team and as Schnieder says, tilt the field. The field certainly tilted, but in the wrong direction.

    • Wilson502

      This just goes to show that QB is THE most important and impactful position on the field. I don’t care how good Anderson can potentially be, he will NEVER have the same impact as a franchise QB/QBOTF. Even if Anderson is solid out of the gate, the Seahawks are still not going to compete for championships with a regressing and aging Geno.

    • Malanch

      “Despite defensive player of the year Hutchinson, Detroit ranked 28th in defense in 2022 and gave up 25 points per game. A very slight improvement over 202…people really think a player not as good as Hutchinson is going to get us to the Super Bowl?” –geoff u

      First of all, a split is in order here, because the Lions’ defense over the first seven games was radically different from the Lions’ defense over the last 10 games:

      Weeks 1–7, 32.1 ppg allowed (1-6 record)
      Weeks 8–17, 20.2 ppg allowed (8-2 record)

      That’s a radical 12-ppg plummet across the split. Meanwhile, the Lions’ offense improved from 24.7 to 28.0 ppg over that same split, a relatively tepid 3.3 ppg improvement by comparison. Therefore, the Lions’ second-half surge toward contention was mostly a product of their defense’s improvement.

      Secondly, you can’t attribute a unit’s performance entirely to one player, as you just did. (Football has a reputation as being a team game, unless you disagree with that.) Likewise, you can’t assess a team’s championship trajectory entirely off one season, as you just did. (The NFL season has a reputation as being a marathon, unless you disagree with that.)

      Thirdly, Aidan Hutchinson was not the defensive player of the year (Nick Bosa was); Hutchinson was the NFL Rookie of the Year—big difference.

      Fourthly, if it’s true that Tyree Wilson is not in the same tier as Hutchinson—while Will Anderson is in the same tier—then your point needs a Hutchinson-Anderson comparison instead. In other words, you just contradicted yourself by making your point but then including Anderson in your list of must-haves at #5.

      • Malanch

        *Note: I meant to delete the “your point needs a Hutchinson-Anderson comparison” sentence; that’s wrong. But I stand by the rest—while largely agreeing with the remainder of your post.

      • Geoff u

        1. Cherry picking is nice, but the Seahawks also had a 5 game stretch where the defense looked legit, only gave up 17 ppg, and we all thought we were hot shit. So much for that. What was the quality of teams/offenses detroit faced? Overall, they were a 28th ranked DVOA defense last year and that’s near bottom of the league, worse than our abysmal defense and we didn’t have a Hutchinson. I don’t care to look further into detroit, sure they improved, but as you say as a team and not because of one player.

        2. Which was my point. Adding Hutchinson did not make the Lions defense elite and vault them into thr championship, like so many in Seattle seem to think adding Carter or Anderson will do — and by next year. It’s silly. Even the 49ers, with the best defense in the league full of first rounders, can’t get there. Which is why they took a chance on Lance.

        Which brings me to 2b: there is one position that is far more important than all the rest, and is predictive of championships and a championship trajectery, and that’s the quarterback position. See the Broncos before, during, and after Manning. See the Patriots before, during, and after Brady. Nearly every Super Bowl involves great to elite quarterback play. Your best shot at a championship is a franchise quarterback. End of story. We dont have one and that should be our #1 priority above all else. And we may never have a better opportunity than now, sitting at #5.

        3. I did mean rookie of the year, my mistake, but there is no edit feature.

        4. I was actually talking about Anderson, not Wilson. Just as Hutch did not turn around Detroits defense and send them to the big game, neither will Anderson in Seattle. This isn’t a knock on either player, they are both great, it’s just that without a franchise QB they just can’t take a team all that far.

        • Wilson502

          Absolutely nailed it with your post Geoff, this is why Ive been so adamant about banging the drum to move up and get a damn QB. Like you said, Anderson doesn’t do jack squat to elevate this team to championship contenders, but a potential franchise QB sure would. I seriously don’t understand why so many in the fanbase overvalue the value of a OLB, when a potential QBoTF has so much more value and impact to a teams long term success.

        • Malanch

          That’s not cherrypicking, mate—that’s a single line dividing a season in two, revealing a defense that clearly turned the corner. By contrast, the Seahawks’ defense only had one brief stretch of quality play, and the only corners it turned were U-turns.

          But the main thing here is that you undermined your own point by approving of Will Anderson at #5 while simultaneously illustrating how drafting the best rookie D-lineman in the league only led to a “very slight improvement” in the case of the 2022 Lions…unless you think Anderson is a significantly better prospect than Hutchinson. Understand that I’m not trying to bust your chops or anything; I’m just trying to understand your point.

    • 509 Chris

      Talking about trading back and getting a 1st next year so we can take a swing in that class, even I’d we have to package picks to love up, just makes me feel like the only play is to trade up THIS year. Who knows what picks that would be next year. Does 21 and 14 for example tempt someone to trade the 3rd pick? Because I know for sure that the 5th and 20th does. QB or bust.

      • Geoff u

        I agree entirely. I’m just thinking worst case scenario, where Houston and Indy take quarterbacks rather than trade out, and Arizona refuses to trade with a division rival, so trades with someone else who takes a QB. In this case, rather than take Anderson, might be best to trade down for a first rounder next year to try again for a franchise QB. Mean, we sre gonna need one. It’s risky though, you never know where the picks will end up.

  22. J

    Unrealistic PFN sim with lots trades after QBs gone foregoing Anderson for 12 and 33 and BPA thereafter:
    18 Skoronski
    20 Mikey Mayers
    33 Ade Ade
    37 JMS
    48 J Downs
    65 JL Skinner
    83 Darius Rush
    151 Moro Ojomo
    154 Byron Young (Tenn)
    198 C Rod Jr
    237 Byron Young (Bama)
    All the Byrons

    • Peter

      Not bad.

      I don’t quite get it with skoronski but I see it with the hawks.

  23. Patrick Toler

    Great article. The whole point of the unique structure of Geno’s contract is that it allows you flexibility to move on in a year. This wasn’t done by accident. It continues to feel like Richardson is the player that they will want – but I think most likely they will have to move to 3 to get him. If they rate him that highly I hope they leaned from the Mahomes experience and don’t sit back and let another team be more aggressive to go get him.

  24. Hoggs41

    It seems to be pretty clear. Stay at 5 and take either Anderson or the QB who isnt picked before you. Plenty of other picks to help the D if you go QB.

  25. Feindt

    We are now entering the phase where everyone is overprepared and starting to overthink. I hope that cooler heads prevail in the Seahawks draft room.

    • Palatypus

      I don’t think there are going to be very many surprises at #5.

  26. LouCityHawk

    A lot of how people feel about their team, free agency, and the draft is individual, group, & social psychology mixed with regional tendencies.

    My experiences has been that Seahawks fans are passionate, loyal (to a fault), want to believe in the players they have, and are forgiving of failures.

    Probably due in part to it being a more diverse fan base (in terms of affluence, industry, city/burbs/country) there are a lot of differing risk/benefit takes within it.

    There are other factors, social media, Madden, online draft simulators, all of which compound the pre-existing issues.


    Persons in the business of punditry make their careers off of saying they are smarter or know more than others (lots of examples of this – Tucker Carlson, Keith Olbermann, could go on…).

    If you start your Seahawks draft saying QB, you immediately are taking the most obvious choice, the logically obvious choice – this insults your sense of self, that you are better (smarter) so your thoughts matter.

    Instead, if you are National focus, the Seahawks are your first chance to do something to display your intelligence, the Panthers ruined your first chance – they are dialed into QB, Texans are giving every sign they are going QB, the Colts are going QB. The Cardinals are going Anderson or trade and there really isn’t more to say (why has Carter never been a choice for the National media?). The Seahawks going QB is boring, expected, and now you have to get creative with the Raiders, the Titans, the Commanders, or whichever team you want to marry with a QB. Remember, your pitch is that you know things. So Carter, or Wilson, or anything other than the obvious.

    If you are a local media pundit, if everyone coalesces around QB, how do you drive listeners and engagement? How are you justifying yourself if you say BQBA at 5 and then move on? Trying to get people fired up about pick 20, that is hard, you’ve been there before, and last you you got a good taste of engagement. So…anything other than a QB? Because only a ‘stupid’ person would want a QB, and my readers and listeners aren’t stupid, here are the smart choices.

    None of this is likely intentional (although it could be), rather sub-psychological decision making. This is why smart kids growing up in liberal communities become conservative. Or why smart kids growing up where everyone listens to country embraces rap. Your dissent is a badge of your intelligence.

    The rub is that none of them want to embrace their hot takes later. How many national pundits are owning up to saying Allen would be out of the league by year 3, after his rookie season? How many own up to predicting the Seahawks to be a bottom 3 team and the Broncos to be Super Bowl winners? Scant few, because admitting your mistakes is an antithesis to you position as the intellect.

    Fans are not immune from any of this.

    Rather than retract, you have to double down or have amnesia. If Levis is the pick at five, start calling for PCJS firing (won’t happen) as they have displayed ‘stupidity’. If Levis helps the team win the division and make a Super Bowl in 2024 – amnesia kicks in.

    All 4 QB going 1-4 is worst case scenario (my opinion). Which is akin to not winning the powerball, but still winning $1million on the ticket, not a bad worse case scenario to be in. Fans should be enjoying the rare opportunity to enjoy these spoils without having to pay for them.

    • LouCityHawk

      Just as a footnote:

      I don’t want a later round developmental prospect from this draft. DTR and Bennett are the only two that are intriguing, but you can get QB like them every year in the mid-rounds.

      If the Seahawks are boxed out from taking QBotF this year, I fully expect them to be figuring out how to solve that in next years draft.

      I hope and believe that the FO has finally learned their lesson about reaching over value, even if the fans have not.

  27. PJ in Seattle

    Here’s my latest mock with the QBs gone 1-4 and not moving up. Did some rando move downs along the way. Yes, mocks are like assholes – everyone has one and they all stink. But I’d be pretty happy with this.

    5 – Will Anderson Jr. Edge
    26 – Bryan Bresee DT
    37 – Jamyr Gibbs RB
    52 – Calijah Kancey DT
    57 – Luke Wypler C
    83 -.Julius Brents CB
    90 – Jonathan Mingo WR
    154 – Tyjae Spears RB
    198 – YaYa Diaby Edge
    237 – Nick Saldiveri IOL

    I doubt Spears would be there that late, but he was irresistble at that pick. Otherwise, this is all pretty plausible.

    • PJ in Seattle

      Mayer went at #25, thus Bresee was the pick there. I traded down a hair too far from #20, I guess. But if I could’ve snagged Mayer at #26 this would’ve checked almost every box.

      • PJ in Seattle

        Just to cap off – if things fell just right, I think this would be a grand slam of a draft where we miss out on the top 4 QBs:

        5 – Will Anderson Jr. Edge
        26 – Michael Mayer TE
        37 – Jamyr Gibbs RB
        52 – Calijah Kancey DT
        57 – Jonathan Mingo WR
        83 – Luke Wypler C
        90 – Julius Brents CB
        154 – Tyjae Spears RB
        198 – YaYa Diaby Edge
        237 – Nick Saldiveri IOL or inser your last pick flyer here

        • Peter

          None of these are bad.

          I would shoehorn a safety into every mock you do.

          They’ve met with a few and have two starters on the roster.

          • PJ in Seattle

            Good point. Considered that at #90. I have a bit of a crush on Brents, but you could insert Jammie Robinson or Trey Dean at safety there, both of whom were on the board.

            • Peter

              Byron young
              Julius Brents

              Just a few of my draft crushes.

              Been pondering a trade down at 20 to say 26. And then packaging third and a fourth to come up for brents. I think he has got “it,” for the seahawks.

              • PJ in Seattle

                I assume you mean Byron Young from Bama. I agree. PFN has him sitting there in the 6th or 7th round, which would be an obvious grab, but I passed becausee no way in that happens. He’s a a Day Two pick for sure. He will be a legit snap eater next year.

                There were a couple of others who fall in their rankings that seem ridiculous to me. In my reset, I tried to re-slot players for where I think they will likely be available.

                • Peter

                  Bama for sure. 6th or 7th. No. I concur with you and Rob. Third round…maybe fourth is where guys like him have seemed to gone since I’ve been following the draft.

    • Ben

      Fully out on Bresee at this point. Can anyone point to his best game tape? I watched 2 from 2021 when in theory he would be looking better, and he looked meh against run blockers and not the least bit dynamic rushing the QB. The Georgia game in particular was a borefest. That said- Georgia got the ball out in 3 seconds or less a LOT, boring and hard to accomplish much as a d-lineman. So I’ll give him that.

      I think he could easily fall out of the first.

  28. Gross MaToast

    The Cardinals should consider whether they want a division foe getting a QBOTF – a guy they’d face twice a year for the next decade-plus – and making the division that much more difficult. Why not take a QB (Richardson?) and trade him out of the division and get a windfall in return? It’s not like they’re going anywhere, anyway, so load up for the future. Unless, of course, they believe Seattle’s dumb enough to take Wilson – sadly an option that remains on the table. But, they’re the Cardinals and they’ll do something stupid – like take Wilson.

    That said, unless Seattle comes away with their QB of the future, I would likely consider this draft failed, regardless.

    • Wilson502

      That last sentence sums up my feelings as well. Its QB or bust for me, theres just no way around this. The RW trade becomes a failure IMO if they come out of it without a long term answer at QB. I dont care how good Anderson is, he will never be as valuable as a franchise QB. Even guys like Bosa or Myles Garrett arent as valuable as a franchise QB.

    • Chris

      If the Cardinals felt that Richardson was some fantastic player they’d have to worry about for the next decade …. they’d pick him themselves and figure out what to do with Kyler afterwards. If they trade it’s because they probably aren’t super worried, at least not for a few years, which is a lifetime in the NFL.

    • Seattle Person

      I don’t know why more people aren’t talking about the Lions moving up to #3 to get Richardson or another QB. I have a hard time believing they think Goff is their long-term QB moving forward. It makes even more sense than the Hawks moving up to #3.

      • Peter

        Because Goff at 28 and to date has had some big years could actually do something big there. I get he’s in our minds their Geno. But the age difference and the multiple years of some big time numbers is a bit different.

        I wouldn’t rule it out.

        But I also think AZ is going to have way more on their plate shortly than whether our qb is awesome or not. Like a terrible roster top to bottom. And a brutal qb contract for a guy who frankly has done very little for that money.

        • Seattle Person

          I get your logic but I don’t think the Lions are bought in. Goff’s contract has 2 years left with a very easy out in 2024.

          I don’t think they view him as a true difference maker. Plus I don’t think they want to pay him 40+ million. It’s a roster that is continuing to build and should be ready to go in a year or two.

          It’s primed for a trade up in my opinion. Plus the Cardinals will drop to #6 which they can still select Wilson or one of the corners if they really like them. Something to mill about because it is certainly very fishy in my opinion.

    • Allen M.

      Despite the fact I’d be happy with the player taken as a consolation prize) Will Anderson), I agree. Failing to land a QBOTF in this draft would feel like a failed opportunity. Surely the team must also know that.

      • Wilson502

        One could only hope they see it that way, otherwise were screwed.

    • BK26

      100% agree with the last line. I don’t know how you see any legit hope without a quarterback. Geno’s career is what is has been and the contract he received shows what the team thinks of him. Lock is a body that isn’t a stranger to the system.

      What part of the defense makes you feel good? The young, still very raw (but massively talented) cornerback? The roster is devoid of enough difference-making talent and is not set up for the future very well due to the cap and the contract situations for various players.

      Geno is already reached where he can go. Why settle for that and stay in mediocrity? it is the worst position to be in sports: not good enough to actually compete for a championship and not bad enough to get the talent to close the gap.

      QB top 5 or it’s all a failure.

  29. Blitzy the Clown

    Adam Schefter @AdamSchefter

    Term update: Odell Beckham Jr. and the Ravens reached agreement on a one-year deal worth up to $18 million, per source.

    Hey Lamar! Come on down!

    • PJ in Seattle

      I guess the ‘up to’ is key, but that is stupid money.

      • Blitzy the Clown

        I’m asking this

        Matt Miller @nfldraftscout

        Would OBJ sign with the Ravens without knowing if Lamar will be back in 2023?

      • cha

        Tom Pelissero
        More details on Odell Beckham Jr.‘s one-year deal with the #Ravens:

        $13.835 million signing bonus
        $1.165 million base salary
        $3M in reachable incentives

        So OBJ will make at least $15 million and as much as $18M on the deal negotiated by agent Zeke Sandhu.

        Very, very interesting. The bulk in hand up front – so obviously fully guaranteed.

        Ravens have $6m of cap room before ODB with the LJ franchise tag on their cap.

        • Ben

          Did he work out for them?? Hard to believe he’s getting paid that much coming off 2 years of bad play/injuries and an ACL.

          Wonder if it was part of an agreement with Lamar to bring him on?

  30. Hunter

    Fully In the either one of the four top qb’s or will Anderson boat. Zero interest in trading back in this draft, the talent just isn’t worth a trade back at 5. Either get the qb or at pass rusher who can get you 8-12 sacks conservatively. Getting mid at best 1st round talent in this draft doesn’t excite me

    • Seattle Person

      I’m pretty comfortable with where the team is at right now. I think they will have their pick of a QB or Anderson. I think that’s where the picks will roll.

      I don’t think it’s about who is going to be but it’s about who the Hawks will take. I wished it was simple but with the Hawks — you just never know. As much as we moan about Wilson, it’s plausible the Hawks will be intrigued with him.

  31. samprassultanofswat

    Rob: Totally agree. If one of the four top QBs, are available at the number 5 pick. I am handing in my card for a QB in a New York second. Even if the pick is Will Levis.

    Where I am torn is moving up to snag a QB. That is where I am torn apart. If it was for a 2nd round pick to move up to lock-in on Arizona’s third overall pick. I say amen. But the Cardinals are not going to settle for Seattle’s 2nd round pick. No way. I am guessing that even though they are trading down only two spots they are going to demand (at least) Seattle’s number 20 overall pick.

    I believe there is a fairly good chance that the top four picks in this draft will be QBs. I know that has never happened. That would be a first time. But there are desperate teams maneuvering to trade up for Arizona’s pick. And Arizona is even more equally desperate to trade out of that pick.

    The Question is: How is much draft capital is it going to take to move up to trade up with Arizona?

    • Troy

      Trade capital to move from 5 to 3 should realistically be 5 + 37….and it still ensures Arizona getting Will Anderson. They can move back deeper but will be getting the mid round talent. Maybe that’s ok with Cards, who knows. They might ask a premium as “insurance” that JS won’t just take Anderson instead of a QB,

      Anyone with inside knowledge on how much talk takes place prior to draft day between potential trade partners? I imagine nobody is tipping their hat too far, but damn you don’t want to be caught flat footed with egg on your face when the clock is ticking.

      • samprassultanofswat

        Troy. I would agree with you. If we were the only team interested in Arizona’s pick. But Arizona will have other bidders.

        • AlaskaHawk

          The other teams will be farther down the draft order but could compensate with more picks. It’s a trade off, we just got saying it doesn’t make sense for Seahawks to move down from #5 and get less quality player. why should Arizona move down? Switching with Seahawks still leaves them with a top 5 pick.

    • P-tip

      Pay, the iron price

      I don’t think the cardinals would move down for just the Seahawks 2nd rounder. At this point I’m getting more nervous about Detroit, Vegas, Tennessee, Atlanta….etc, moving up to 3. And then what.
      Reading Rob’s articles has had a soothing effect: there are 5 good options, we are rooting for the team with the 5th pick.
      Please no tyree. Please.

  32. CHaquesFan

    I think the conversation around Geno is that Geno is a damn-good QB in this league – but is a damn good QB still good enough to win or do you need a superstar, top 5 QB? We’ve seen some average Joes and also a lot of stars make it deep but I’m struggling to remember seeing a 10-15 ranked QB go deep in the playoffs – a Kirk Cousins, Dak Prescott esque QB

    • PJ in Seattle

      He still has time to prove me wrong, but Geno’s firmly in that Cousins/Prescott/Goff tier. He won’t throw away games much and will have his moments where he looks like a world beater, but he is not going to carry an average team deep into the playoffs on his back.

      If we had the 2013 Seahawks D, Geno would be more than enough. But we don’t and we have another year or two or three of building and hitting on a lot of good draft picks and FA adds to get even close to to that.

      Honestly, I root for the guy and hope all his talk about grinding harder than the next man and letting that chip on his shoulder push him into the elite tier pans out. JS could not have structured this contract more perfectly for both him and us – and I credit Geno for giving a bit of a hometown discount to make it so.

      But with QBs, you have to be looking 3-5 years out. Franchise QB on a rookie deal with a 5th year option is just too much of ajackpot to pass up. Even if Geno plays pro-bowl level for the next year or two, are we really going to feel ok rolling him out there in 2025 at 35 years old?

    • Rob Staton

      Is he a damn good QB?

      We’ll know after 2023

  33. Matt

    Hey Rob-

    I know how against trading down you are, but what if at #5 Schneider is choosing between only these 2 options…

    1) Tyree Wilson
    2) Trading Down

    Would you be open to trading down then? I certainly would (actually prefer it). What if trading down brought back multiple 2nd/3rds this year and/or a 1st next year – Especially since, “After this year, the Seahawks will be left to their own devices — with limited cap space, limited trade stock and likely a pick outside of the top-10” – That seems to be a way to put some “money in the bank” for a rainy day – At the expense of a guy with superb upside, but is more underwhelming.

    I’m with you on T. Wilson – I really don’t want to take him…And I’d rather have extra picks where we can get 1 or 2 extra from this list then Wilson:

    Ade Ade

    If you trade down you can even then justify taking a chance on Hooker having extra picks. And if you get a 1st next year (from a team like the Texans, Commanders, Titans, etc,) then perhaps you’re in the conversation for Caleb Williams or Drake Maye at the 2024 draft (and either should be ready to step in if Geno turns back into a pumpkin).

    Again take 1 of the 4 QBs or Anderson – No problem there. But I’m of the belief that trading down would be the next best option if Schneider doesn’t see it the way we do. A top 5 pick should be a “special” player. With a QB you can justify taking a “project” player with upside in Richardson, but I don’t like it at DE – Particularly in T. Wilson’s case as I don’t think he has that “dog” in him the way that the elite DE’s in the NFL do.

    • Rob Staton

      I don’t see the point in forcing a trade down discussion. There’s no reason to imagine a scenario where it’s Tyree Wilson or trade down only

      • PJ in Seattle

        This could only be a thing if one of the 4 QBs are off your board. Otherwise, one of those guys, likely Levis but could even be Richardson or Young, is going to be sitting there. If not, Will Anderson will be.

        Any of those guys would be a better pick at #5 than Wilson.

      • Matt

        I guess we’ll disagree here. If you agree that it’s worthwhile to have Jalen Carter do a 30 visit because “what if he lasts until the 2nd round,” then it’s smart, or just fun, to do an exercise where we consider that Schneider doesn’t the top 4 QBs and Anderson as his top 5 overall players.

        What if Schneider is very enamored with Richardson’s or Carter’s upside – Just not at #5 overall? We certainly saw back in 2012 JS trade down a few spots before still going “off the board” and then betting on the upside of Bruce Irvin.

        He might feel similarly about Richardson, Carter, and T. Wilson – And at least 1 of them will be available at #7 or later. Plus no GM has traded as much as Schneider over the past decade so it certainly stads to reason that if he has a good idea of the draft landscape, likes multiple players at 5, and isn’t quite comfortable betting on upside without getting some additional draft capital in the bank that he could easily trade down a few spots.

        • Rob Staton

          Sounds like you’re having to really work to justify this thought on trading down

          They’ve talked endlessly about what a rare and viral opportunity this is

  34. Sten

    The hawks are only a receiver picking up a long term injury away from being a completely anemic offense if the o-line run blocks like they did last year. It would totally kill their season, even if they strike gold on the defensive front. That’s why I’d rather they draft a QB and hope for progress with the young guys they already have so that when that guy is ready, he’ll have a great team around him

    • Peter

      Very simple and concise.

      • Palatypus

        I concur.

    • AlaskaHawk

      That is an argument for choosing a wide receiver and tight end in the second round or higher. Lockett is getting older and there are no guarantees with him.

      • Allen M.

        Richardson + JSN/Kincaid would be a hell of a way to move this offense into championship caliber in the future AND hedge against a Lockett (or DK) injury. Teams would have to defend every inch of the field. Plus, you can get away with a simply above-average defense when you’re scoring 35/game and only allowing 20. Modern NFL. When the run game is clicking, you’ll allow even less and can close out games on the back of Walker. It’s time to improve a strength: the offense.

  35. Ross

    Rob, I know you will absolutely hate, HATE, someone even bringing it up after all the words you’ve written about him, but in my opinion Carter should still be in play for us at 5. You can’t ignore the risk, but in the entirely possible scenario where Anderson is gone, and there is no bidding war for our pick for whatever QB is left, would it not be better for the Seahawks, if they want to develop an elite defence, to gamble on the blue chip talent of Carter rather than reach for more of a project player like Wilson? I’m sure your answer is “no, you fool” because of what you have heard down the grapevine. I guess what I’m trying to puzzle is whether the Seahawks are right to be risk averse in this scenario? I’m not questioning you at all when you assert that Carter will not be on their radar. And yet, I don’t see this resistance when it comes to most of the other teams in the top 10. Eagles and Bears fans seem quite happy to take the gamble. Are the Seahawks being smarter than everyone else and letting another team make the mistake? I admit that there’s a strong possibility I’m being blinded by the idea of Carter terrorising Purdy, Stafford and Murray. This thought is predicted on the Seahawks choosing to try and contend with Geno now rather than draft for the future, I would be comfortable with drafting a QB here as well, I’m not totally focused on the now. Anyway love the blog, can’t wait to listen in to the livestream on draft day if you do one (and I hope you do).

    • Seattle Person

      The Eagles are a Superbowl contender and have 2 first round picks. They can afford to take a luxury pick or a gamble if they wanted to in my opinion.

      The Hawks are still in the building phase and it’s a huge huge gamble for a top 5 pick. Just my cents.

      • Ross

        True if the Eagles miss on Carter then it doesn’t affect them too much, but it the Seahawks have a choice to make I’m only saying it might be worth swinging for the better player. Wilson is safer but there’s a scenario where he doesn’t become a good player, just as there’s a scenario Carter flames out. At least with one, you’re swinging for a player you know is elite.

        • Rob Staton

          It’s no good being ‘elite’ in talent but not putting in the effort to be elite on the field. Wouldn’t want to watch that Ohio State ‘performance’ for 17 weeks

    • Lord Snow

      Not Rob but I have watched six Georgia games and I saw Jalen Carter do jack. So I’m not sure about this terrorizing Brock purdy and terrorizing all the other quarterbacks in the NFL. I just like to see him do it once but not in a Seattle uniform.

      • AlaskaHawk

        Agreed, I’m still baffled regarding how anyone would consider Carter elite or even excellent. He only makes the field 30% of the time and pretty much disappeared in the BCS series. Why is he elite? I would pick his teammates on the defensive line over Carter.

    • Mick

      I’d take the QB. But if for whatever reason I wouldn’t want to do that and nobody is interested in trading up at 5, the world does not end at Carter and Wilson. I’d take Bijan or McDonald or even Meyer and live with it.

    • Hawkdawg

      Smarter than everyone else? How can we possibly know how many teams have taken Carter off their boards? Some team is going to take him, and probably in the first round. But for all we know, that team might be the ONLY team who would have done so. If that’s the case, then 30 teams could well have the same smarts about Carter as the Seahawks. So it really makes no sense to posit that the Seahawks, if they don’t pick Carter at #5 (or #20 for that matter), think they are being smarter than everyone else.

      • Rob Staton


      • Ross

        That works both ways though, there could be 30 other teams who are in on Carter. My thought was based on the media coverage. I don’t see hard resistance to Carter for other teams, besides the Raiders being reported to have him off the board. Rob has made an assessment of what the Seahawks are thinking, based on their recent draft history, and he’s certainly right. But are the Seahawks right? Are they passing on the chance to sign an elite player because they’ve been burned once before? I was only talking about it in a specific scenario as well. I would rather take Anderson or a QB over Carter, but that might not pan out. I don’t think it’s too crazy to suggest there’s a worthwhile argument to be had between a riskier character but better player, and a safer character but riskier player. Would be moot if we didn’t have a decent QB already and another 1st round pick.

    • Rob Staton

      In the case of Carter, it wouldn’t be risk averse to pass. He’s a player with one of the biggest lists of red flags we’ll ever see. I can’t keep repeating why.

    • Mr drucker in hooterville

      Your scenario is fiction. It is Anderson or a top 4 QB. That’s the play. The shuffle would be if one of those five comes down with a massive injury so have to come off the board. In that case, Carter still is not the choice. He aint that good but for a few plays a game.,

  36. Jhams

    So here’s what I just can’t get past. We have a top 5 pick, and incredibly rare and valuable resource. Taking a shot on any of the QBs (even Levis who I don’t like nearly as much as Rob) is completely justified. But Will Anderson? Even his biggest fans always start with “Sure he’s nothing special but he’d be pretty good!” All the talk about his leadership and character and motor and all that other stuff just reminds me so much of Clelin Ferrell. Are we really going to spend a too 5 pick on slightly better Clelin Ferrell? I’m just terrified we’re going to spend this once in a decade pick we lucked into on a dude that’ll be a slightly above average starter at best.

    • Lord Snow

      You can’t ignore his sophomore year as if it didn’t exist

      • Jhams

        Can’t ignore this year either.

        I’m no expert but I trust Rob and a lot of other smart people who start the analysis with “Now he’s no Bosa but…”

        • Palatypus

          Joey Bosa is probably a HOF.

          • Hawkdawg

            Isn’t Rob talking about Nick, not Joey?

            • Palatypus

              Dude, I couldn’t keep the Jonas Brothers straight on Saturday Night Live.

        • Lord Snow

          Sure and Analysis is analysis and it has to be factored and of course as always you’re entitled to your opinion as everyone is. With that said I did see an interview with Will Anderson about his numbers being down and this was about halfway through the season and he said this year way more double and triple teams. Makes sense the Alabama defense was not as talented as in years past and he’s Public Enemy Number one. So he’s getting game planned for.

          One thing I will say Lawrence Taylor was the best football player I ever saw. The only two linebackers on the outside who have come closest to him in my opinion where Derek Thomas and maybe Andre Tippett. But I bet his 40 time and I’m not going to look it up was no better than Jordan Brooks or Aaron curry. I remember when Bill parcells? had a fitness regime in one of his training camps. You had to come in and do a whole Circuit of things and score a minimum score. Taylor thought it was a joke. So he comes in rips his shirt off and does some ungodly number of military presses way past the minimum and throws the bar and the weights away from him and says “next.” He obviously thought it was a joke because he was a football player not a gymnastics guy not a decathlete. And by the way my buddy who keeps trying to sell me on the wisdom of Seaside Joe told me back then when he saw him without a shirt “the guy doesn’t even have any abs and he’s not even that big in his upper body why does everyone think he’s so great?” And I’m like because he’s a FOOTBALL player. We don’t know if Will Anderson is that. In fairness no one has come close. He might be he might not, but that sophomore year was not Clelin Farrell that was Lawrence Taylor and that cannot be ignored.

        • JimQ

          A point many may be missing with EDGE-Will McDonald; At the Senior bowl measurements he was 6-034-241 with 9″ hands, 35″-arms & *82-3/8″ wingspan*. So, he’s not only very “bendy”, but his near 7-foot wingspan helps him grab onto guys once he has bent. He would seem to have an unusual length to height ratio. He would be a really good consolation prize if Anderson was drafted early (hopefully by Arizona). In the “old scheme days”, wouldn’t he be considered an excellent LEO candidate?

          Personally, I’m watching the smear campaigns currently underway targeting Levis & I hope it keeps going for the next couple weeks so Will Levis can be selected by the Seahawks more easily at #5 and eliminate some of the current back and forth on what the heck to do at pick #5. I really can’t understand any of the Carter madness, what team really wants a 30% of snaps per game DT that gets winded after his very first series? His occasional splash plays to me don’t mean squat if he isn’t able to play many, many more snaps & actually be impactful in a lot more games. He sounds like a very entitled, lazy, waste of a pick & his whole “non-professional attitude” appears to be dog dodo as well. I think he’s poison, even if a day-3 guy.

        • Patrick Toler

          The Bosas went 2nd and 3rd overall – you’re generally not getting that kind of prospect at 5. I would say that Anderson is a very good prospect to be able to draft at 5 if that is how it plays out. A guy who last year was unanimously talked about as a future #1 overall pick, who then had a season where he was played out of position (with zero complaints), was often double teamed, and still had more production than most top edge prospects.
          I think the ‘he’s not a Bosa’ comments are partly to temper unrealistic expectations based on last year, and partly because he isn’t a classic bendy edge rusher who easily projects to be a league leading pass rusher annually. But if he is a 7-10 sack guy with plenty of pressures and tackles for loss, who is great against the run and a team captain type, that is pretty damn good. And I think based on his sophomore tape there is some upside for him to be legitimately great, even if you can’t count in it.

          • Lord Snow

            This is a fair take

            • PJ in Seattle

              Agreed – and why I’m grateful we are sitting at #5 and not #6. Feels like there is a major drop off in terms of risk and talent after the 4 QBs and Anderson.

  37. hawks

    Not surprising, but this stats site’s model isn’t big on Richardson and, especially, Levis. Gives me pause re: taking a QB early.

    Stroud: 93rd percentile
    Young: 87th percentile
    Hooker: 74th percentile
    Richardson: 36th percentile
    Levis: 9th

    • samprassultanofswat

      In the case of Richardson, he only has one year as a starting QB. Levis On the other hand, the talent around Levis (especially OL) was bad. Levis was sacked on an average of 4 times per game. Not to mention being under duress most of the time he dropped back. One thing that concerns mean a little about Richardson is his accuracy/consistency or whatever you want to call it. Everyone is comparing Richardson’s completion percent to Josh Allen. Well, there is a slight difference. You can account for some of Josh Allen’s consistencies based on weather conditions. However, in the case of Richardson. If he were to go to the Seahawks, Richardson would have QB guru Greg Olson working with him.

    • Rushless pass

      He adjusted Richardson to 48% due to age.

    • GrittyHawk

      I don’t really agree with their model utilizing sack rate as a predictor but not any of the other metrics that would explain sack rate. Levis had the least time to throw of any of these QBs, and was blitzed on something like 40% of dropbacks. PFF has a stat which attempts to discern sacks which are the QB’s “fault”, and not to say it’s a foolproof metric, but his percent is very much in line with the other QBs. What I would infer from this is that the pressure rate metrics don’t account for the NUMBER of defensive players pressuring the QB on a throw. This is just my theory but I would posit that because Young and Stroud were blitzed less frequently, they typically only had to evade one rusher on a throw, whereas the heavily-blitzed Levis was likely dealing with multiple rushers and therefore could not as easily step up or escape the pocket.

      • Peter

        Pff. Are we almost to the point where we realize that whole enterprise is smoke and mirrors? When your qualifying base lines include a variable for olinemen that can be as far apart as several hundred snaps it’s not really data.

        Also they employ talking heads that are so smart that can’t see the forest for the trees and literally comped Levis to Locker….and said “levis needs to make a big improvement in accuracy (sic)”

        Uhhhh….levis as a full time starter threw 65+%. Locker never ever cracked 60%.

        If they had switched the smart sounding word of accuracy to less boneheaded mistakes I’d actually agree.

  38. Cover 12

    Firstly, I am ALL for Jalen Carter be the Seahawks draft pick IF PC/JS’s vetting suggests they select him. Otherwise…

    As for the positions that pretty much always deliver in the first year…oh wait, I can only think of one that does it regularly – Stud RBs deliver routinely in year one. Bijan Robinson is Very likely to deliver a difference-making 2023 season.

    Paired with Kenneth Walker III, he would give Geno More to augment this season than virtually any other player we could possibly draft. The Hawks will benefit from having Insurance against our young 2nd-year star missing games due to injury.

    Plus, Bijan’s receiving skills are in the ilk that Christian McCaffrey. The Seahawks Offense could even have both in the game at once w/ him lined up wide. All the talk of having a WR who can run the rock just like Deebo Samual does. Well, Mr. Robinson can be just that weapon.

    It is expected that he will be the league’s top 3-5 RB immediately, with the talent to be #1. CMC sure gave Mr. Irrelivant a heck of a leg-up last year. Do we think Brock Purdy would have come close to that success if he did not have such a weapon?

    If having the Most action-ready player, Bar None, in the draft is ever worth breaking the ‘rule’ of waiting to draft a Game-Changing asset, this is the time.

    • Palatypus

      Jalen Carter’s agent doesn’t wash his hands after he pees.

    • Gary

      This draft is not about this season.

  39. Lord Snow

    I need to see no more platypus do not draft that guy. That means he’ll be at Seahawks headquarters. If you go up to training camp and watch them train you might get his bacteria

    • Palatypus

      You’re lucky you didn’t actually see it.

  40. ErickV

    Nice to see Corbin Smith has hopped on the Anthony Richardson bandwagon. I want Richardson on the Seahawks so bad. He could probably challenge Julio as the face of sports in Seattle and that gets me super excited.

    • Seattle Person

      I want to see who is stronger, faster, and who can throw farther…A couple of 6’4 240 lb monsters…

    • LouCityHawk

      Corbin has been on Richardson for awhile.

      Really has been zeroing in on him lately as a must draft, I’m wondering if it will start to turn more heads.

  41. Glor

    I was wondering when you would look at trading down for future picks. On PFN, I was able to gain three 2nds in 24 by trading down on a few picks after 5. Obviously not realistic, but curious about when you look to grab future stock

    • Rob Staton

      How exactly are you doing that without trading down from #5?

      I don’t want second round picks next year to avoid this rare opportunity to pick in the top five

      • Glor

        Well that is why I didn’t think the simulator was very realistic, got a 2nd for moving down from 20 and then moving down again for another second etc.. still got ade and kancey as well..

        • Glor

          At pick 5, Levis was there, so I ended up with Levis, Ade, Kancey for the first three picks and ended up with three 24’ seconds.. pretty crazy

  42. JimQ

    04/09/2023; MY daily Mock – NFLmockdatabase sim. — Traded #52 FOR: #58, 91, 205 & 212.
    5 Will Levis, QB | Kentucky A –QBOTF, let him sit & learn, maybe a few limited series here & there.
    20 Will McDonald IV, EDGE | Iowa State A –Improves the pass rush immediately.
    37 Adetomiwa Adebawore, EDGE | Northwestern B –Unusual speed/traits, coach him up.
    58 Luke Wypler, IOL | Ohio State B+ –Center for years to come, nice he can grow with new QB.
    83 Tucker Kraft, TE | South Dakota State A –Allows trading Fant & reducing cap & still a ++ TE.
    91 Jonathan Mingo, WR | Mississippi B –WR-3 potential very high, nicely complementary to WR1 & WR2.
    123 Jartavius Martin, S | Illinois A+ –Defensive backfield help, has some versatility.
    151 Zacch Pickens, DL | South Carolina A+ –A very Solid add to the DL rotation. (a Slight fall+)
    154 Kenny McIntosh, RB | Georgia A+ –RB-2, traditional 3-rd down receiving back? (a Slight fall)
    198 Warren McClendon, OT | Georgia A+ –Really an OG, OT experience will help him? (a Slight fall)
    205 Bryce Ford-Wheaton, WR | West Virginia B+ –Athletic High upside developmental WR-?
    212 Chris Rodriguez Jr., RB | Kentucky B+ –RB2/3, power runner backup. (a Slight fall)
    237 Jerrod Clark, DL | Coastal Carolina B+ –Big Nose tackle, space eater with huge wingspan.
    ——I don’t think there are any “major” reaches with any of these picks (in my personal opinion/rankings). However, this draft contains a total of 13-picks, I think that Trader John often likes to move around in the middle to later rounds of the draft and I’ve attempted to do just that with this mock.

    • RJ webber

      For conversation sake, say that they do end up taking Anderson at 5 and they missed out on hooker are there any later QBs that catch your eye. I’ve seen you mention DTR quite a bit before the end of season are there any others?

      • Seattle Person

        If this is the case then I’m quite comfortable with rolling with Drew Lock.

      • PJ in Seattle

        Aside from DTR, I think Jaren Hall could be interesting. And Jake Haener later.

        But really, you’re grasping at straws at that point and hoping to get lucky with a Purdy-like prospect. I’d be ok with taking a shot but with so many other holes to fill, we would probably be passing up other players who could make more of a difference.

  43. YDB

    Considering that Chris Mortensen is confident that Young will be Carolina’s pick, I wonder if Houston can be moved off that #2 spot…

    TRADE #5, #20 & #123 to HOU for #2 =>CJ Stroud
    #37 => Tomi Adebawore
    #52 => Gervon Dexter
    #83 => Izzy Abanikanda
    #151 => Luke Schoonmaker
    #154 => Andrew Vorhees
    #198 => Deneric Prince
    #237 => Karl Brooks

    • Julian L

      I agree, I’ve consistently felt the Texans should be the team to try and find a trade with.
      I don’t know if #5, #37 and Rd 2 2024 pick would do it? Perhaps a pick swap Seattles #83 for #104 would swing it?

      You never know you might get a pick back for trading Geno in 2024 and pick up a third this year with trading back at #20?

      • Julian L

        Also players could come into it? Darryl Taylor or Noah Fant perhaps, either would improve the Texans roster.

      • YDB

        I think *if* Seattle has any shot of moving up to #2, then the #20 will have to be included in the package. It would suck to have to use both picks on a single player; however, coming out of the 1st round with QB1 would be a home run.

        That does tighten up our flexibility to fill other holes on the team, so John may need to shift to a more “need-based” balancing of pick assessment for the rest of the draft. But hey, we would be on a tremendous team building pace after off season #2 of a 3 year rebuild.

        • Peter

          I don’t think people realize that the dline is still need based just to fill a unit.

          • YDB

            Sure would be nice to have a NT if we are going to play in odd front, right??

            All kidding aside, we do need 6-7 bodies just to fill out the 53, not to mention having to get some DLs for the 90 man. If they get aggressive in targeting the 2nd round for DL, we should have some options.

  44. Quinn

    Peter King reporting that any talk of the Seahawks taking Carter off their board “isn’t feasible.” Apparently he is visiting in the next couple of days. Watch all the Carter cultists say this means they’re definitely taking him and it’s not a smokescreen at all, unlike the QB selfies.

    • Rob Staton

      And the thing is, it most definitely isn’t a smokescreen either. This is absolutely, 100% the right thing to do. You have 30 official visits. It’d be negligent not to use one on Carter, hear him out, spend some time with him. This is what an official visit is for.

      I doubt it’ll change anything and stand by everything I’ve written. But you still have to meet the guy.

      Not sure why King directly mentioned the Seahawks not having Carter on their board. Who else is saying/predicting that? I haven’t seen anyone report that.

      FWIW King also said this:

      I think Jalen Carter could be drafted fifth or 25 and I wouldn’t be surprised.

      Says it all really. That to me is the more important line in King’s piece because it speaks to what we’ve been saying. Sure, someone will take a shot. But plenty of teams are not going to consider him. I don’t think Seattle will when it comes down to make a call.

      • Mick

        I think this is the point of these visits. You invite a guy like Carter, where there’s doubt, not someone like Downs. I highly doubt we draft him at 5 and he won’t be there at 20 so he’s out of the question for us. Bullet dodged.

        • Rob Staton


          I’m sure a great day would be had by all as Josh Downs comes in and wows everyone talking like a hot shot foreign diplomat, leaving everyone amazed by his candour.

          But you don’t need that meeting.

          You have this one because what if Carter falls to 20? Or 37? Or what if he’s available down the line? And why wouldn’t you want to hear his side of the story? You need to complete the process with him.

          • Peter

            If the seahawks draft him I’m not going to freak out.

            I’m not going to eat crow.

            I’m not a trust the process guy, yet. So it won’t faze me.

            My early prediction:

            Carter will join the (brutally long and tedious) illustrious list of Seahawks going back to when Shaun Alexander got hurt, to Thurmond, the boring conversations about that one time CJ procise had two good games, raashad penny, and our current Jamal Adams where we spend the majority of their time in Seattle talking in circles about how good they can be if only “x,y,z,” happens.

            • Rob Staton

              I will eat some crow. I’ve said I’m 99.5% sure he won’t be selected at #5. And I still believe that. If he is taken, I’ll have to own it (which I’m prepared to do). But let’s see what happens.

              • Peter

                Day of sure okay I’ll join you.

                I guess for all the dunking on people online and stupid tribalism…..the concerns for me aren’t car racing (stupid,) the accidental death (tragedy to tge families and to him)

                Tyreke hill, Mixon, and our very own Clark had, for me way more egregious offenses.

                I just have a hard time seeing a guy playing a big boy 17 game schedule not pulling a Penny and checking himself whenever because he’s a sub two down player… a selfish fan that’s the light bulb I care about turning on.

                • Rob Staton

                  My biggest concerns 100% are that he’s destined to always put in the minimum effort, try to get by on talent, and that Ohio State will be repeated multiple times in his career.

                  That and I don’t think you can trust him to learn from mistakes or commit to this. If he wouldn’t commit when millions were on the line, why will he commit when he’s guaranteed $30m?

  45. MattyB

    Rob, I love reading SDB keeps me involved throughout the closed season with all your great pieces.

    I feel as written that pick #5 is a once in a career for JS & PC and they have done all their due diligence, including Carter as it feels like they really want to pick here and try and select a true talent one that can make a difference. As with almost all drafts who is the possible bust in this group? And if Wilson or Carter are taken at #5 which would be the bigger risk?

    • Rob Staton

      Carter is by far the bigger risk

      You pick him, he does a mini camp, then he’s left to his own devices until camp.

      What does he do during that time? His record of making mistakes and not taking care of his body will give his coach sleepless nights

      • UkAlex6674

        But surely whoever drafts him would have him live with coach or similar on or near the training facility?

        • Rob Staton

          You can’t make him live in the facility. There’s probably rules against that. I’m pretty sure you’re not allowed to be in the facility during a set time period anyway.

          As for living with a coach. What are you going to do? Have someone follow him around 24/7? Treating him like a kid? He’d be a multi-millionaire the minute he’s picked fifth overall.

          • Matt

            I have a basic draft philosophy. It’s real simple…

            *Don’t use 1st round picks on players that need a babysitter.*

            I hate that Carter doesn’t have Will Anderson’s personality, but he doesn’t, and his actions over the 12+ months are all the warning you need to stay clear of a human being like that – regardless of the tantalizing upside.

      • McZ

        Carter is only a risk to franchises dependent on single draft turnout. The Seahawks are one of the those, Eags and Niners are not.

        If the Eagles draft Carter, pair him with Davis and the old pals and limit his snaps while building him up, they will look like freakin’ geniuses.

        The only risk is he busts. No problem here, the Eagles DL will be a force with or without him. Plus, lots of high character guys busted quite hard, this risk is always there, even in R1.

        • Rob Staton

          He’d still be more of a risk than Wilson for the reasons given

          • McZ

            My point is, that there are franchises that are in a perfect situation to roll the dice, while others aren’t. The Seahawks aren’t.

            (A lot of folks buy into the special culture idea. I think, this is genuine rubbish. PC lost the locker room twice in the last four seasons, and Earl Thomas middle finger wasn’t even qualifying.)

            The Eagles picking (what long was regarded as) a potential #1 player at the additional pick #10, limiting his snaps behind premium competition and make him earn his money… this could work.

            Apart from them, I cannot see a franchise picking in the top 10 having the balls to do that.

          • McZ

            That said… Eagles pack #10, #30 and #64 to Arizona… take a shot on Richardson..Fearsome thought.

            • Rob Staton

              They aren’t doing that

              Hurts just led them to the SB

      • Malanch

        On Brock and Salk yesterday, draft-related discussion centered around the question, ‘If you were at the VMAC for the Jalen Carter visit, what would you ask him?’ The suggested lines of inquiry kept coming back to the ‘What did you learn?’ theme, in reference to Carter’s rough transition to the professional ranks. But past simple won’t do when present progressive/continuous is required, as in, ‘What are you learning?’ His process of learning about the professional transition is actively underway, is it not?

        If Carter just does his thing like he’s always done his thing—yet still gets drafted Top 5—then I would conclude that he is learning, ‘I don’t need to change a thing.’ As Hawk fans know, the knock-on effects of the Malik McDowell whiff hampered the team’s roster construction for years, contributing greatly to the premature shuttering of their playoff window. Truly: They haven’t been a contender since. Now, just imagine how destructive a Jalen Carter whiff would be. One shudders to think…

        • Rob Staton

          Lance Zierlein mentioned on Brock & Salk that basically he did what he wished, was never pulled on it, and that in the player’s mind he might’ve felt like he wasn’t doing anything wrong.

          My understanding is, and I’m more comfortable discussing a bit of what I know on this single angle now that LZ has touched on it, is that he basically did what he wanted at Georgia. They never knew when he was going to be at a meeting or lifting session. And the perception from Georgia, a source told me, was as long as he turned up on gameday, they were OK with it all. I don’t know why Georgia did this. It might be because of what Todd McShay said, that his practise habits were bad and he talked back to coaches and was difficult to manage. Maybe Georgia’s staff determined this was the only way to get him through a season — let JC be JC and we’ll just use his talent on a gameday? It doesn’t speak much to his pro-prospects though and it’s one of the reasons I don’t think he’ll be taken at five. Because if he comes to the league and is treated totally differently, what happens then? Does he take to coaching? Will he be disciplined and committed? Will he live and act like a pro? Maybe he will? But you’ve got to make a $30m decision there — and you won’t see him until training camp once rookie camp ends.

          I know there’s a general feeling too that he doesn’t realise what he’s missing. That he should’ve been a dominant Suh type in college. That he was better than everyone, including the two first rounders last year, and shouldn’t have ever let himself be in a situation where he was a spelled defender with minimal production. That he has the talent to be truly special and he just doesn’t know what he’s going to end up missing out on unless he changes his entire mindset.

  46. Trevor

    I like Mcshays player tier rankings a lot better than his mocks that’s for sure.

    • Mick

      Good news is, we have 4 picks from his first 5 tiers. So we should get quite a bunch of possible stars and starters. Just don’t get cute and don’t draft for need.

  47. Trevor

    My bold prediction for the upcoming draft is that only WR goes in Rd #1 and that is JSN. Also that 4 tight ends (Mayer, Kincad, Washngton, Musgrave) go before the 2nd WR comes off the board.

    Finally Johnathan Mingo will be the 3rd WR off the board after JSN and Jordan Addison.

    • LouCityHawk

      The fan base’s infatuation with JSN is baffling to me.

      I just don’t get it. Him and Siaki Ika are the 2 leaving me asking why?

      What is the case for this guy? I know the Nat Media are all over him and Rob has him round 2, but I fail to see a pound the table player.

      I can make good cases for QJ/Zay/Downs/Mingo/Hyatt being players that should go first. Mims and Reed are 2 wrs I’m very high on.

      As always, I hope that I’m wrong about a player. Still, Ohio State probably could have used him in the playoffs.

      • Peter

        JSN and Carter:

        Been following the draft long enough to say I’m not sure I’ve seen two players get so much run simply based on the following metric:

        You know how good the those players are ( in this case Wilson/olave WR at OSU….and Davis, walker, wyatt at georgia)….well these two are better than those players…..

        With zero proof that JSN is better since you know he didn’t play.

        And the other guy has super worldly flashes when you can even find his number on the field oh and gets handled by three olinemen I wouldn’t cry if Seattle drafted.

        • LouCityHawk

          Isn’t that the negative rub on them?

          Zay flowers produced with the school band playing around him. JSN produced in 2021, with other teams laser focused on two star receivers. He was a gadget player with miserable YAC (someone prove me wrong). He basically punted the year that he would be drawing #2 cover corners, he has not played outside…

          Carter has elite talent surrounding him, so the opposing O couldn’t coordinate to shut him down, sort of like Michigan’s front looking a lot less fearsome this year. A true star leaves a gap.

          Carter I can understand, because he does look like a Reggie White clone in some tape. Ika? I think people just look at his weight and figure he is what Ted Washington used to be.

      • Trevor

        Never said I was a fan of JSN just that he will be the first WR off the board in a WR class with no true #1 WR.

        The buzz is because last year when he was healthy and played with Olave and Wilson both who excelled as rookies he was WR1 of that group. Runs great routes and has awesome hands. He will make a great WR2 / slot WR in the NFL. Not interested in him for the Hawks really as I like some options later better.

        • LouCityHawk

          JSN wasn’t WR1, he constantly was in motion in the slot and used to eat up opposing defenses worried about the two demons playing X and Z.

          I hope he is first off, at #7 or some nonsense. So I can forget about him, and if he tears up the league as a once in a Generation Y, so be it.

      • Patrick Toler

        I’ll bite because I think JSN is actually being underrated by many. He lacks elite long speed and benefitted from playing from the slot, but he has truly elite quickness and short area explosiveness, is an awesome route runner, has great hands, and is physical for his size. He was crazy productive when healthy and I think he can be super productive in the short to mid passing game in the NFL. Which is more important than ever with teams doing everything they can to limit deep passing. I also wouldn’t discount that both the rest of the OSU receivers and opposing coaches (per Bruce Feldman) thought he was the alpha of that position group.

      • Spectator

        Not to get in an argument about him, but im one of those infatuated with him, and for good reason. Watching Stroud tape from 2021, JSN was phenomenal. Had better seasons than both Olave and G.Wilson as a true sophomore. GW and Olave raved about him. Its lazy to just say teams were “laser focused” on those two.

        He lacks long speed, but so do some of the best wr to play. Cooper Cupp lacked long speed, look at him right now. JSN is the exact opposite of Carter, for those making that comparison, as JSN had phenomenal tape and production, but lacks some athletic traits. Thats the only knock on JSN. And really its only long speed, as his agility is elite.

        Have you actually watched any of his tape? Cause its one thing to not want him or like him, its a completely another thing to say he is in the same boat as Carter. His issues are completely different. Its also irrational not to understand the hype surrounding JSN, because he did put up really good numbers as a true sophomore. He had an injury this year, you cant exactly call him out for that. I would be more concerned about the actual health of the hamstring.

        Zay Flowers Senior stats as the number 1 receiver on his team – 78 receptions, 1,077 receiving yards with 12 receiving touchdowns
        JSN true Sophomore stats as number 3 receiver – 95 receptions, 1,606 receiving yards, 9 tds

        Not really close. JSN did have a true soph Stroud throwing to him though, which is a big benefit.

        I get the knocks on JSN, but would love him as a early round 2 or later round 1. Him and Mingo are my 1 and 2 receivers, just cause i don’t like Downs size. But Downs is legit and id love him too. Hyatt not so much, and QJ would probably be 4th. No for Addison for me because of build, but i get the hype on him. Again, I understand the knocks on JSN and agree with Robs assessment on him, but to act as though he is a scrub and dont understand the hype on him? Come on.

    • Sea Mode

      Jim Nagy

      One thing has become clear on calls around league past couple weeks: NFL isn’t nearly as high on this year’s WR class as media.

      Frequently seeing 4-5 wideouts in mocks. Have spoken to numerous teams that have only one first round grade at the position. That guy is JSN.

  48. GrittyHawk

    New mock on PFF makes me want to smash things.

    1. CAR – Richardson
    2. HOU – Young
    3. IND – Levis (Colts trade up)
    4. ARI – Anderson
    5. SEA – …

    Jalen Carter

    If we took Carter with Stroud still on the board I would run into traffic. They have TEN trading up to 6 to take Stroud, FWIW. Infuriating.

    • Rob Staton

      It wouldn’t happen

    • Big Mike

      Well that mock would leave Stroud for Seattle at #5. Zero chance that happens but if it did I would truly hope JS is knocking over little old ladies as he sprints to the podium to take CJ.

      • Simo

        No need to knock over the old gals, JS should just light a cigar, throw on some shades, and take his sweet time sauntering up to the podium to submit Stroud’s name!

      • LouCityHawk

        I’d already be there in my PC disguise, monocle and all

    • PJ in Seattle

      That’s just ludicrous.

  49. McZ

    FTR, the fanbase is split between

    a) those believing drafting defense gets us out of mediocrity hell
    b) those that are believing a new QB will do this
    c) those who want to end the reign of the current fired-up-peacocks-are-great-good-enough-culture

    This is the third rebuild in 10 years. It will not lead anywhere using the same ideas.

    That said, drafting a QBotF will be nice to attract the HCotF.

    • LouCityHawk

      Remember when the team almost move to Los Angeles?

      I do.

      I’m in no hurry to Jefferson a regime that is perennially a top 10 front office, and has spun off many successful front offices

      I have criticisms of the Seahawks. My top criticism is not moving on from Russell Wilson sooner when he was vocally complaining about interest in Mahomes and Allen.

      My draft criticisms focus on ignoring character concerns, reaching for need, and getting too cute, thereby missing out on the player they were targeting.

      In regards to that last sentence, a sizable portion of the Fanbase are pounding their keyboards demanding that character concerns be ignored, players be reached for because of need, and multiple complicated trade back scenarios.

      • McZ

        It wasn’t PC and JS who kept the Seahawks in Seattle. It was Paul G. Allen.

        JS and especially PC are pretty much replaceable and should be replaced for not delivering two rebuilds. Perhaps not after the first attempt in 2016, but definitely 2019.

        They are about to deliver the third. Will the results vary? How could they?

        The Seahawks find themselves drafting for need because they are always needy. They grossly fail in the FA market, they misinvest in fringe positions and they trade for bad players.

        This is a direct result of the good-enough-brave-boyscout agenda.

        But you’re right, the “let’s bring in even more mediocre talent to evade mediocrity”-guys are clearly the fourth group . I call them the “defeatist league”. They have capitulated.

  50. Hawks Fan 0503

    According to Adam Schefter, Jalen Carter is visiting Seattle today. Guess he isn’t quite off their board yet.

    • Rob Staton

      It’s tomorrow

      We’ve discussed this already

      I will repeat my thoughts at the end of a new article that is set to be published today

  51. Hawks Fan 0503

    Didn’t paste… here it is again:

  52. Palatypus

    Good quote from Peter King today:

    I relay this story this week, 2.5 weeks before the draft, because of how impossible it is to predict drafts these days, and how humorous it is that [Sam] Wyche served up my first one on a silver platter.

    I thought about this Saturday evening when I was swapping information — or trying to, anyway — with a well-connected operative from a team with a pick in the top 12. “I don’t know what’s happening in front of us,” he said. “Anything.”


    “I’m not kidding.”

    • geoff u

      “The mocks this year are going to be laughable. So many guys repeating the same thing, trusting guys who might not know anything.”


  53. LouCityHawk

    My favorite tidbit from King’s article was about how the Dallas Cowboys used to look at a reporters mock draft to check range.

    Then he goes on to note how leaks have dried up, as well as traditional sources, and gives a couple of examples on how teams use mocks today.

    • Palatypus

      From that perspective, these are the variables that we know if you are picking “in the top twelve.”

      1. Houston might take a defensive player at #2 for Demeco Ryans to build around…or a quarterback.

      2. Arizona might trade down to a team desperate for a quarterback…or take the top defensive player available.

      3. Seattle could take the best defensive player off the board or the last elite quarterback.

      4. Although Tight Ends and Running Backs are not typically taken in the top 10, Bijan Robinson and Michael Mayer will likely be the only talents worthy of that grade left on the board after five.

      So at that point, you are looking for traits. Peter Skoronski is this year’s Zion Johnson.

  54. Ben W

    Thoughts on Peter King’s article about Carter’s visit with the Seahawks? Generally of the thinking that Carter won’t be selected for the character reasons you’ve highlighted but I think King’s article makes me reassess. Ultimately, I think the visit is just due diligence and they will pass on Carter I don’t think he is fully off their big board (yet).

    • Rob Staton

      See previous comments

      And it shouldn’t make you reassess. It doesn’t change anything.

  55. bv eburg

    I tend to agree with Seattle Person. I think Detroit is the team to come to Arizona. The below draft means back to Robs A+ draft and Seattle taking Anderson. What’s AZ do with the #6 pick? Draft the tackle that neutrilized Anderson, helps against Bosa and helps Murray.

    AZ gets #6, 48, 55 so couple that with natives 34 and 66 = 5 picks in top 66
    Det gets #3, 96 and they still have their native 18

    From AZ perspective. team needs OT, C, Dline, CB, RB2, WR3. Arizona is has quality skill position players Hopkins, hollywood, ertz, conner and a boatload of cap hit to murray. So there draft based on Robs horizontal.
    #6 Wright – Tackle
    #34 – any of the 12 dlineman Rob has up to 2nd round grade
    #48 – Center
    #55- any of the 8 CB’s Rob has up to 2nd round grade
    #66- highest rated RB2 or WR3 left on board.
    This hit’s pretty much every need by pick 66.

    As for why Detroit, all the same arguments it makes sense for Seattle plus have #18

  56. Sea Mode

    Adam Schefter

    At least six teams have inquired with the Arizona Cardinals about trading up for the third overall pick in the upcoming April 27 NFL Draft, per league sources. Cardinals still are mulling whether to move pick or make it.

    • Sea Mode

      Sounds like they had Schefty put this out there to let teams know they’re ready to hear their best offers now…

      • Palatypus

        Is the “they” the Cardinals, a player agent, or both?

        • Sea Mode


      • bv eburg

        Funny my post just posted before yours sea mode. To me it makes sense for AZ. And the detroit option I outline keeps it away from seattle.

      • Rob Staton

        Sounds that way, think you’ve nailed it

    • LouCityHawk

      Assume SEA, Oak, Ten…

      Others… IND, HOU, WAS?

      I’d imagine most teams would be checking in on trading up just as part of due diligence.

      • Rob Staton

        I’d guess:


        • Wilson502

          Seahawks should be a part of this. If not, QB purgatory here we come.

    • ShowMeYourHawk

      I suppose a factor in this is how AZ feels the league may eventually punish the front office upon investigation of the burner phone fiasco. If they feel they may be docked any draft capital next season, maybe they force the issue and accumulate as many 2-3 round picks this year and next as possible to offset the loss? Still have enough to trade their way back up to a top slot and take a QB in 2024?

      While it could all be a front office ploy to get the offers rolling in, I still can’t see JS offering more than a 2nd this year to move up two spots. They’ll happily take Anderson if a team moves up to 3 and the QBs are all the first four picks off the board and claim it was their strategy all along.

  57. Sea Mode

    Breer with even more breadcrumbs pointing towards Young at #1.

    I also found his point about the Texans interesting. We already know they were involved in trade talks with the Bears before Carolina pounced. Might that mean they like one QB over the rest? (Otherwise why try to trade up?) Maybe there is a chance they trade out or go defense after all…?

    And we’ll, at least he’s neither ruling out a QB for Seattle nor dismissing the issues with Carter.

  58. Palatypus

    I forgot that Demeco Ryans played linebacker for Alabama. For some reason, I thought he played for Texas.

  59. Palatypus

    In the ‘Which comeback player are you most excited to see’ segment on GMFB, Peter Schrager just said, “Jamal Adams of the Seattle Seahawks.

    I guess he doesn’t read this board.

    • STTBM

      Lol! +1!

  60. Rushless pass

    Would you trade #5 for Derek brown and Brian burns? Damn you PFN!!

  61. STTBM

    Rob, I like both your drafts, but I’ve got my heart set on a QB, namely Richardson but really any one of the top 4. I’m not sure I believe Mingo and others fall that far, but I’d be thrilled to get them.

    Not sure these Draft Simulations are good for anything but fun.

    Really hoping for a miracle and Richardson falling to five, I’m not thrilled with missing out on qbs and taking Anderson. My fear is he’s another Okung-level player, and not a top-5 pick talent. But I haven’t watched him enough to have an educated opinion, so all that’s left is to cross my fingers it works out great for Seattle.

    • STTBM

      Of course, posted the above in the wrong blog post. I’m a nincompoop Rob! Forgive me.

  62. Benito

    Anthony Richardson
    QB Florida
    • Adetomiwa Adebawore
    EDGE Northwestern
    37. Will McDonald IV
    EDGE lowa State
    52. Mazi Smith
    DT Michigan
    83. Jonathan Mingo
    WR Ole Miss
    123. Tyjae Spears
    151. Cory Trice Jr.
    CB Purdue
    8 154. Luke Schoonmaker
    TE Michigan
    198. Chris Rodriguez Jr.
    RB Kentucky
    237. Keondre Coburn

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