The broad jump seems to be important in Seattle

The most important test for any prospective Seahawks lineman?

When the Seahawks consider which offensive linemen to draft, the broad jump is the single most important test they consider.

Allow me to present the evidence.

Before we start, here’s how describes the test and how it compares to the vertical jump:

“The broad jump expresses horizontal power, which is more specific to football motions than vertical power. Vertical power helps you go up for a ball, bat down passes or hurdle defenders; horizontal power helps you cover the full 5300 square yards of the ironed grid. A pure acceleration step expresses horizontal power.”

Since 2012, the Seahawks have not drafted a single offensive lineman that has jumped less than a nine-foot broad jump:

Mark Glowinski — 9-5
Terry Poole — 9-5
Kristjan Sokoli — 9-11
Justin Britt — 9-3
Garrett Scott — 9-7
Ryan Seymour — 9-2
Jared Smith — 9-7
J.R. Sweezy — 9-5

Glowinski and Poole ranked joint first among offensive linemen at last years combine in the broad.

Garry Gilliam, an undrafted free agent and now possible starter at left tackle, also jumped a 9-5.

Alternatively, since 2012 the Seahawks have not selected any of the 15 best O-line performers in the short shuttle or three cone at the combine.

It doesn’t look like a coincidence.

For the Seahawks’ O-line: Explosion >>> Agility

The selection of Justin Britt in 2014 was a surprise because he wasn’t on anyone’s radar as a second round pick. The Seahawks, seemingly enamoured with upside and athleticism, took a player who ran an 8.14 in the three cone and had a 4.69 short shuttle — both terribly mediocre results.

For that reason it was assumed Britt was merely a ‘Tom Cable guy’. A prospect Cable simply liked irrespective of any athletic profile.

This likely wasn’t the case at all. Britt performed well in the one test that seemingly really matters — the broad jump. He recorded a 9-3 at his pro-day.

It was revealed this week that Cincinnati offensive tackle Justin Murray has visited the VMAC for a private workout. He managed a 9-8 broad jump at his pro-day. That would’ve ranked #1 at the combine this year.

Like Britt, Murray basically performed really well in only one test. He had a tremendous broad jump but performed poorly in the short shuttle and three cone:

Justin Britt
Broad: 9-3
Three cone: 8.14
Short shuttle: 4.69
Vertical: 27.5 inches

Justin Murray
Broad: 9-8
Three cone: 8.01
Short shuttle: 4.79
Vertical: 29.5 inches

If you ever wondered why the Seahawks zoned in on Glowinski, Poole and Britt — the broad jump gives you an answer.

So what is the likely reasoning for their focus on one particularly explosive test?

Jason Spriggs had the best broad jump by an offensive lineman at the 2016 combine with a 9-7. Fifteen defensive line prospects beat that mark. Fifteen.

It’s another key example of the athletic discrepancy between the defensive and offensive prospects entering the NFL. Sheldon Rankins and Jonathan Bullard — two big DE-DT hybrids — jumped a 9-10 and a 9-8 respectively. Both beat Spriggs’ mark.

If you want to know why the Seahawks focus on measurables — and ultimately why we spend a lot of time talking about them — there’s your answer. If you’re expecting a guy who only jumps an 8-0 like Evan Boehm to play center against a defensive lineman who explodes to the tune of a 9-10 in the broad — you might have a problem.

So much of the O-line battle is based on that first-step explosion and power. Moving people off the LOS with a sudden, explosive movement is key (especially if you want to run the ball effectively as the Seahawks do). The broad jump is a good test of a players ability to do that. Agility is a nice bonus — but if you can’t move people off the line, what difference does it make?

This is likely why the Seahawks are keeping Kristjan Sokoli at center — with his 9-11 broad jump. Sokoli’s mark for an offensive lineman is outstanding. In reality, he’s only as explosive as Sheldon Rankins.

Unfortunately there are barely any O-liners in college who can say that. And that’s why the Seahawks are looking at defensive converts.

So considering the Seahawks have consistently drafted good broad jumpers since 2012 and have not prioritised the best performers in the agility tests — what does it tell us about the 2016 class?

As we noted, the Seahawks haven’t drafted anyone with a sub 9-0 broad since 2012. Here are the players that beat that mark at the 2016 combine:

Jason Spriggs — 9-7
Halapoulivaati Vaitai — 9-5
Brandon Shell — 9-4
Joe Haeg — 9-3
Alex Redmond — 9-3
Joe Thuney — 9-3
Cody Whitehair — 9-2
Germain Ifedi — 9-1
Joe Dahl — 9-1
Connor McGovern — 9-1
Jake Brendel — 9-0

It’s worth taking into account size with these numbers. Germain Ifedi jumped his 9-1 at 324lbs. Alex Redmond is 294lbs, Joe Thuney 304lbs and Jake Brendel 303lbs.

Le’Raven Clark recorded a 9-1 in the broad at his pro-day. Shon Coleman has not performed any tests so far due to injury.

Here’s a list of ‘big names’ that failed to crack 9-0 in the broad jump (the full list would be much longer):

Jack Conklin — 8-7
Ryan Kelly — 8-7
Taylor Decker — 8-5
Jack Allen — 8-5
Joshua Garnett — 8-3
Christian Westerman — 8-2
Nick Martin — 8-1
Evan Boehm — 8-0
Sebastien Tretola — 7-6

I’m not prepared to state firmly that the Seahawks won’t draft Conklin, Kelly and Decker in round one based on one test. Yet Seattle’s recent draft history would seem to indicate that could be the case.

Spriggs, Ifedi, Whitehair and Clark might be the most likely O-line targets at #26. That’s with the caveat that Carroll and Schneider haven’t drafted an offensive lineman with sub-33 inch arms (Whitehair would be the first).

Haeg, Dahl, McGovern and Thuney could be potential targets in rounds 2-3.

We can probably forget about Martin, Garnett, Allen, Boehm, Tretola and Westerman.

It also means a prospect like Justin Murray, with his explosive 9-8 broad jump, could be preferred on day three to some of the bigger name prospects in rounds 1-3. Keep an eye on any future VMAC visitors and how they performed in the broad.


  1. Gotta Be Bennett to Win It

    The Seahawks seem to have shown some tendency to look at players a year away from free agency/contract issues and draft players who might be able to replace them. How do you see the Seahawks 2017 free agents impacting their 2016 draft?

    As always, I really appreciate the amazing content you are providing to us Hawks fans. Even though there can be some annoying commenters, there are many of us 12s who really appreciate your work.

    • Rob Staton

      Hauschka costs $3.5m. They could actually save nearly $3m cutting him and replacing him with a rookie this year. Not sure they’ll want to though!

      The key ones might be Jordan Hill (we expect them to draft a DT), Patrick Lewis (they might draft a center) and Sealver Siliga (who they’ll likely add competition to at some point anyway). Luke Willson is another but they seem to like him and might keep him around and I definitely think they’ll extend Doug Baldwin.

      • Gotta Be Bennett to Win It

        Gary Gilliam would also be a FA, which seems like it makes Ifedi more of an option. Do you think Luke Willson would garner much interest on the free agent market?

        Also, do you think if the Seahawks draft a center, that they would want him to have the ability to play guard (in the tantalizing potential that Sokoli develops into the starting center)?

        • Rob Staton

          Gilliam is a restricted free agent in 2017 and the Seahawks will retain him for a minimal cost. They basically have two years to decide if he’s a top LT.

      • CharlieTheUnicorn

        He is Hausch money….. and with the changes to the kicking game; no reason to take a chance imo.

      • kenny sloth

        If they did bring in a rookie, i could see a competition…

        • Josh emmett

          I heard on the Jon Clayton show that younger kickers were having problems adapting the new extra point distance after a quick score. The veterans have a better feel for a 33 yard extra point after a quick score with no warm up. I guess kicking the old extra point didn’t need much of a warm up and going back to the 33 yarder is tuffer and more warm up time helps from what I understood.
          Kickers are an important part of the game. The Ginga Ninja just just got paid and is considered an average punter by the numbers in the league. Carroll knows what up on special teams. I like the new rule. I had a pretty cheesy grin when Gostowski biffed that extra point in the Afc championship game, haha, that’s bad but even the pats get shitty breaks too, haha

  2. Trevor

    Great analysis Rob this is the type of insight and info that no other fan base gets when it comes to how their teams draft and who might be of interest. Love it!

    You are certainly help narrow down the list of potential candidates.

    • Rob Staton

      Thanks Trevor. I really appreciate the kind words people email or write here. Makes writing the blog worthwhile 🙂

      • manthony

        I DITTO that Trevor. A couple years ago Rob you pointed out that the Seahawks dont go for corners with sub 32 inch arms and that’s helped narrow down the CB prospects tremendously. And now you’ve seem to have cracked another one of PCJS codes.
        Your observational skills are truly extraordinary, you make connections no one else makes.
        I dont comment the most, but I’m here everyday, this is my favorite website.

        • Rob Staton

          Thank you!

  3. H M Abdou

    The ONLY O-lineman I’d want in round 1 is Ifedi, other than that, go with Bullard.

    • bigDhawk

      Agreed. Ifedi is head and shoulders above any other OL prospect likely to be available at 26.

      • Josh emmett

        Check out Shell from the gamecocks. Most of the measurables are quite similar to Ifedy. Maybe a couple reps on the bench and an inch in shells’ vert. Everything was very close and on Sparq scores Shell was right after Ifedy. He played in the SEC, not banging the table I was just thinking Shell ticks just as many boxes as Ifedy and nobody is talking about Brandon. Maybe a 4th round steal, the frame is there just like Ifedy. I really like the 9 foot cut off on the broad jump as a filter for these guys because you can see what guys are going to be there late for the Hawks because they value certain measurables higher then other teams. Great analysis Rob!

  4. Trevor

    Rob any idea what Russel Okungs Broad jump was? He and Carpenter are the only two OTs JS has drafted in Rd #1 so I wonder if they will make an exception for a long Tackle candidate?

    As it stands Ifedi almost seems to tick all the boxes if we go OL in Rd #1. I hope Coleman has a good workout on his private workout as he seems like he is pretty athletic.

    Based on Rankins measurables, tape and Pauline’s comment that the Hawks gave him a 1st round grade after Senior Bowl I think he is the only defensive player they might take over OL in Rd #1 if he fell.

    • Rob Staton

      Okung jumped an 8-9 at his pro-day and didn’t do it at the combine. He was pre-Tom Cable though.

      Carpenter had an 8-10.

      So you might be able to make a case for them being willing to overlook it for size/length — but Gilliam jumped a 9-5. It looks like a more recent trend as the NFL has moved decidedly one way to elite defensive athletes. I think SEA has reacted to that — that is what the evidence tells us since 2012.

      • Nick

        Excellent point. And we’ve seen that a strength of SEA has been there ability to evolve with trends in the NFL.

      • Trevor

        I think you are definitely on to something similar to the 32 inch arms for CBs and 33″ arms for OL. There are just some measurables that they really do have cut off points with that are deal breakers.

        Looks like I have to hope Coleman jumps well. Ifedi really does look like the almost perfect pick based on need and what they look for however.

        • GeoffU

          I’m not convinced these cut off points are deal breakers, but I think they’re pretty close. You have to be a pretty special talent in another area to overcome it. Like Wilson’s height, not ideal at all and Carroll loves prototypical size for a QB, but his special tilt the field talent more than makes up for it.

      • kenny sloth

        Okung repped 38 times. Carp is about the biggest person you’ll ever meet. Unique qualities are definitely worth watching out for.
        See: Devon Cajuste with his Harvin-like three cone.

  5. Jeff

    This is great work and fantastic research but it makes me very mad. This does not seem like a smart way to judge offensive lineman and there’s prob a reason none of those listed players above are good linemen in the league. It’s one thing to be athletic but passing up guys like kelly and nick Martin because they don’t broad jump far is absurd to me. Being a quality lineman is so much more than that.

    • Rob Staton

      The thing is though — if 15 D-liners are all more explosive than the #1 offensive lineman in this draft class — that’s an issue.

      And we’re seeing it all over the NFL. Teams cannot find O-liners who match up. Nearly every O-line in the league struggles in one form or another.

      While Ryan Kelly tested in a very similar way to Nick Mangold — the league has dramatically changed since Mangold entered the NFL. All of the top athletes are leaving high school wanting to play defense. That is creeping into the league.

      A player with Kelly’s physical profile might not, believe it or not, struggle in the NFL against vastly more explosive defensive linemen.

      The Seahawks, and others, are likely trying to push back. Find guys who can compete physically first and foremost and then coach them up.

      It’s very very very very hard to do. But it might be the best way to get a line that can actually handle the Aaron Donald’s of this world.

      • H M Abdou

        Good luck finding anyone who can play well vs Aaron Donald! I’m anxious to see the results of Ifedi’s pro day, which is April 6 for Texas A&M.

        • Nate

          I would love to see Sokoli try!
          Godspeed, 4Soko

      • Nathan_12thMan

        I imagine with that philosophy we have and having it in practice with Sweezy, Nowak and Sokoli we above probably all other teams would benefit from a change to the CBA which allows O-linemen (among others) to practice more (full contact, full speed) in the off/pre-season. I know that the new CBA really hurt OL in that way. Like JS said, Sokoli really needs reps, and tons of them. Well it is hard to get quality impactful reps under this current CBA.

      • RealRhino2

        I don’t believe 90% of that.

        • Rob Staton

          Don’t believe it then.

          There’s a reason the Seahawks are doing what they’re doing — I’m just highlighting the likely thought process.

          • CharlieTheUnicorn

            This may or may not be the secret sauce to how and why Seattle drafts OL players (or converts DL to OL). Worth keeping in mind when you (the collective on here) perform mock drafts.

          • RealRhino2

            The thought process seems to be tremendously flawed, then.

            1. Not a problem, necessarily, if the DL are more “explosive” than the #1 OL. Reasoning, which flows throughout this process counterargument, is that it has ALWAYS been the case that DL are more explosive than the OL. That’s largely why they stick at DL in the first place instead of getting moved to OL.

            2. Don’t believe top athletes are suddenly or recently “wanting” to play defense. DL always better athletes than OL, and coaches will put guys where they are best.

            3. You make a list of our only above-average OL in the PC era it’d probably be something like: Okung, Unger, Sweezy, Carpenter, in that order. Best two — by a wide margin — jumped under ‘9. Sweezy is the only guy in the group to broadjump over 9’. So it’s either a flawed proxy or it doesn’t matter a whole lot in the first place, at first glance.

            • RWIII

              RR2: You have a right to your opinion. I have a right to disagree with your opinion.

              • Jeff

                I think RealRhino is absolutely right and just because the Seahawks are doing something doesn’t make them right. In fact, their evaluation of offensive linemen since JS/Pete took over has not been good — especially in recent years where they’ve taken athletes who have technique issues.

                My problem with what Rob is saying is this. In every era of football over the last 30-40 years, the DL have always been far superior athletes to offensive lineman. Lawrence Taylor, Reggie White, Bruce Smith were athletic freaks. So was Julius Peppers in 2002. Aaron Donald now is a machine.

                I don’t think there’s any proof that the best way to block someone like Donald is with a comparable athlete. Why is that a better method than a stronger lineman thats a lesser athlete with more proven technique. Turner/Ryan Kalil handled Seattle’s DL in the playoffs. I think having some athletes is a good thing.

                Glow looks like a player but only building your line with athletes while eliminating a lot of capable linemen based on one test is an extremely flawed approach. There are a lot of good players that Seattle would be removing from consideraiton and this is extremely dangerous given the state of this line.

                Base on the names rob lists above in the aritcle, its pretty clear that this method isnt proven by any means and i think the people buying into it because “its the way of the future” is shortchanging themselves.

                Max Unger is exactly the kind stable player that this line (a younger Unger type) and if theyre going to pass on the Ungers of the world (Ryan Kelly perhaps who is a fantastic player) to get only athletes (someone like Spriggs is a far worse OL at this point than R. Kelly or N. Martin), there shortchanging themselves and Russell Wilson.

                I think this is absurd way to way to approach the line. Take Dallas for example. They have some big-time athletes on their line but they balanced that out with someone like Travis Fredereik, who rob told me on twitter, didnt test well at all. Frederik is a Pro Bowl C in this modern ERA> you’re just as likely to be able to block Donald with a good strong technician than with a guy who can move.

                • RWIII

                  : Jeff I have a couple of questions. First question is. The NFL doesn’t want the best teams to keep all of their premium players Seattle because of Free Agency lost Bruce Irvin, Brandin MeBane and Russell Okung. They couldn’t aford to keep them. With that said what should the Seahawks be doing at offensive line?

                  Every year good teams lose good players.

                  Also Tom Cable and crew must be doing something right. Every year the Hawks are either number 1 or near the top in rushing ysrds. Oh BTW. After Patrick Lewis was inserted into the line the pass blocking improved significantly.

                  • EranUngar


                    Since you asked, it worked great for the Seahawks.

                    If you see the OL as a means to an end and that end is improving the performance of your offense, here are the results:

                    RW posted the best stats of his career by far behind that OL.

                    The Seahawks have a very prolific run game behind that OL even when they lost their all pro RB and later his backup.

                    The Seahawks offense was 4th in the NFL in both yards and points behind that OL.

                    The Seahawks offense is rated 2nd in DVOA.

                    It seems that whatever they had out there has not prevented them from fielding an effective offense.

                  • Jeff

                    The Hawks are #1 in rushing yards is because of Russell Wilson, not the OL. And I’m all for going young on the OL, using draft to be cap efficient, but my issue is with their evaluation process if they’re using broad jump as the #1 most important measure. That is a dangerous road and based on their results evaluating OL, it’s proven they are not nailing it.

                • ulsterman

                  agree 100%

                  • ulsterman

                    agree with what Jeff said that is, think it’s ridiculous to rule good players out based on a few inches on one test. how’s it working out for the seahawks?

                  • Jeff

                    EranUnger, I think the turning point of the offense was because of Russell. They had to re-design their entire offense during their bye week because of how poor the play was up front.

                    Citing their #2 DVOA offense and #4 in the league and the rushing success such isn’t a reflection that their OL is working. It was done in spite of those guys. Russell would be so much better if he had a consistent pocket and wasn’t always running for his life.

                    Look at the Week 16 Rams game or the first half of the CAR game as great evidence of how their OL holds up against a quality DL.

                • BGahan

                  Completely agree with you, Jeff.
                  Lately Tunsil had a 28.5″ vert and 9’3″ broad at his pro day.
                  As far as OL I think combine results are overvalued. Look at what they do on the field and just draft some guys that can block.

                  • Rob Staton

                    It’s too easy to say that though BGahan. What happens when the guy who could block average college linemen starts coming up against monsters in the NFL and it doesn’t translate?

                    Virtually every great NFL tackle has at least a 9″ broad jump.

            • Troy

              you are 100% right RR2, sure is athletiscm important, yes of course, but is it the most imporatant? no, absolutely not. if it was there would be no need for tape, no need for interviews, no need for skill, just hold a combine and draft accordingly. I hope that if the scouts, the GM, everybody on the planet recogznies that a guy could be a probowl lineman (but has a sub 9 foot broad) then PLEASE DRAFT THE GUY FFS!

            • mwstretch

              Rob, it is a great insight, thanks for pointing it out. And for everyone else, remember with the Seahawks, there will always be exceptions to any rule. If you have any doubts about that, just remember the height of our Quarterback.

              • Rob Staton

                Totally. The exceptions will likely need to exceptional though — as in Wilson’s case.

                • mwstretch

                  Agreed. That being said, I think the most likely position we’d see an exception would be center (Kelly or Martin for example). Just because the position has additional responsibilities, and additional skills needed (just the ability to pop up quickly after the snap and get into your block, etc) so those additional skills would carry more weight. If a center checks every other box other than the long jump, he’s more likely on the Hawks board.

                  • Rob Staton

                    FWIW — the Seahawks have not drafted a center yet. By that I mean they haven’t drafted a guy who played center in college.

                    Might be a coincidence — but they seem to want outstanding athleticism there (see: Sokoli). The fact they are so determined to make Sokoli a center and not a guard or tackle is telling IMO.

      • Seahawcrates

        It’s also a way to hunt for value in a down market. If the quality of inventory is low, and everybody is desperate for quality, prices (salaries) go up as do investment costs (high draft picks, free agents). Finding a late round highly athletic prospect whether converted late (Gilliam) or from the defensive side (Sweezy, Sokoli) means you potentially hit it big for cheap.

      • Josh emmett

        I still see Kawan Short blowing up Britt to start the divisional playoff game at Charlotte when I think about the Hawks last game, I wanna see Ifedy or Shell thump that dude or even see Britt work on his one on ones in the offseason and take another swing at Short after getting worked, haha, just a little salty

        • sdcoug

          It was had to watch, but as much as our interior could have done better…so too could have Bevell. Was it a surprise to anyone that lynch got the first down handoff up the middle? No? Then why would it surprise Carolina either? They assumed (correctly) where the ball was going, pinned their ears back, and set a big early tone.

          • sdcoug

            hard to watch*

          • Shadow

            That play drove me crazy. When they lined up I was literally screaming “Play action! Play action!” at the TV. It was just SO obvious what was coming, and Seattle really should have used that to their advantage and tried to catch Carolina napping. Oh well….

            • matt

              Same here.

    • Saxon

      Completely agree. I’m sure the Seahawks front office is smart enough not to focus on one number and looks at it in context with the rest of a players attributes, but I really hope they don’t have a baseline broad jump number that precludes drafting anyone who doesn’t have the minimum hops. Based on their cavalier approach to converting D lineman to O, it seems like they are much more concerned with athletic prowess than savvy at the position.

    • Raybones

      When you consider the fact that the Seahawks have led the league or been at the top in rushing during the Tom Cable era, and have won a super bowl ( should have been 2!!!) how can anyone really say that his methods of producing Olinemen is wrong? They arent great pass blockers by definition, true, but thats not the primary goal here. The only true measuring stick is results and given that criteria there is no other conclusion to reach then the Hawks methods of finding and developing Olinemen to play in their system has been nothing short of successful.

      • David

        Correlation is not causation.

        Yes the offense has been good and the Hawks went to the Super Bowl twice. That’s not what’s at issue here. If the Hawks had taken an OL who was a better technician but had a worse broad jump than Justin Britt, would the quality offense have gone up or down. Would they not have made the Super Bowl in 2014 or could they possibly have made the Super Bowl in 2015 (Justin Britt was atrocious in a couple of key plays in the Panthers play-off game).

        Should the Hawks front office just say, since we were #2 in Offensive DVOA last year and went to the play-offs we shouldn’t try to look at methods that could improve the leaky offensive line?

        • David

          And looking at rushing yards to measure the quality of the OL isn’t exactly accurate because that is not taking in account yards the Russell Wilson rushes for either on scramble plays or on the read-option. The read-option yards accumulated by Wilson can’t really be attributed to the OL because the OL leaves one guy unblocked and the end doesn’t contain then it opens up a lane for Wilson and scrambles happen usually happen because the OL is bad, not good. In fact, if the OL was better, I would contend that Wilson would probably have less rushing yard then more.

          • STTBM

            Thank you!

      • reggieregg

        Russell Wilson adds a lot of yards to the rushing totals but if we can’t line it up and convert on 3rd and 2 then I don’t care how many rushing yards we get per game!

        • HI Hawk

          A better offensive line wouldn’t have the marginal impact people seem to think it will. Points are what matter, not yards or first downs, and the Seahawks offense has been adept at scoring points with this atrocious OL (tied for 4th). How many more points do you think they’d score behind a better OL in all honesty? The best pass blocking in the NFL may not actually result in more points because Pete Carroll is, by nature, vanilla on offense due to the strength of the defense. That said, better run blocking might help them grind the clock a little late to hold a lead – but how much are run blockers worth?

          Pete and Tom’s opinion appears to be that road graders and cut blockers can be developed and thus a set of tools (athletic traits) are more important than coming in ready to play. It allows them to use late round picks to take athletes that can become future OL, for better or worse.

          It also affords them the opportunity to stack the defense even more, and possibly restore the defense to best ever status.

  6. Nick

    I’ve been loving Spriggs for some time now. I wouldn’t be surprised to see him wearing a Seahawks uniform. He plays with a lot of passion and grit.

    • Nick

      On that note, Rob I’d love for you to analyze Spriggs’ play!

      • Rob Staton

        I will go back to him this week.

        • Volume12

          I’m with you Nick.

          Love Spriggs (well I don’t or won’t allow myself to fall in love with any footbal player). I think there’s a very good chance he ends up here in the PNW.

          • Jarhead

            Given this new assessment and information, I think Spriggs is our best bet. I know people keep saying Finesse on tape- but Okung was a high performing LT for us for the last 5 years and I don’t think anyone would accuse him of being a mauler. I think he could be a great addition and potentially give us the flexibility to play with where we place he and Gary Gilliam. I like his fit for T. Ifedi and Clark are too raw and I don’t see them having the potential to be elite like Spriggs.

    • Trevor

      The thing with Spriggs is that I view him as a finesse LT and I think PC/JS trully believe that Gilliam is our LT of the future so unless you think Spriggs makes a better RT LG than Ifedi or Coleman I just don’t see the Hawks taking him on Rd #1.

      • Nick

        That’s a great point, Trevor. Perhaps they utilize him as a RT and see if Gilliam can carry the load at LT. That could be a good long term plan.

  7. Stephan

    Bravo Rob – this is extremely insightful.

  8. Saxon

    Identifying these trends is valuable but, obviously, there is so much more to playing the position than a healthy broad jump. Sometimes I wonder if Seattle gets too caught up in these types of numbers and ignores technique and experience at the position. The notion that they prefer swing players, like tackles that can also play guard, seems like they prefer jacks of all trades and masters of none. The differences between playing inside and outside are not subtle and, like Malcolm Gladwell’s Outliers book suggests, it takes a lot of time to master a craft.

    It would be interesting to chart perennial Pro Bowlers playing OL over the last 10-15 years and see whether broad jumps really portends future success. It would also be interesting to see how many so-called swing players become dominant at their NFL positions or whether you’re better off drafting pure guards and tackles and centers.

    • Volume12

      To be fair though, the league has changed even over the last decade.

    • Rob Staton

      I don’t think it’s about focusing on the test per se… it’s about pushing back against the influx of far superior defensive prospects entering the league (as identified in the piece).

      If the broad jump is the best test for trench explosion, asking Evan Boehm and his 8-0 broad to block Sheldon Rankins who jumps a 9-10 is unfair. Finding someone who is more closely matched to Rankins and coaching him up is probably as key as anything.

      • Trevor

        I agree 100% if you watched the Senior bowl this year it was crystal clear that the DL was so much more athletic than the OL in 1 on 1 drills it was really no contest.

        For any non-belivers to Robs hypothesis I challenge you to go back and watch the Senior Bowl tape featuring the OL/DL one on one match-ups and try coming to a different conclusion.

        • sdcoug

          I think this is probably part of my attraction to Dahl. In addition to fitting Rob’s interesting Broad revelation (or suspicion), Dahl has unique recovery foot-speed, or lateral agility.

          If you agree with the notion of D-lines overwhelming current O-lineman with athleticism and explosion, there will be many times that even the best O-lineman get beat off the snap. The few times it started to happen (against Dahl) in the Senior Bowl, his lateral footspeed allowed him to slide back in front of the defender, at least enough to redirect and mitigate the immediate threat, letting his QB react (if not complete his read and throw).

          • Saxon

            There’s no debate that the best athletes are on defense. That’s not new. What is new is the Spread Offense dominating college football and producing offensive lineman with bad technique. While athletic ability is still important on the OL, it seems an oversimplification to blame the NFL’s crappy O-line play on a dearth of athleticism. If it were mainly measurables Sokoli would be an All Pro. Understanding leverage, how to use your hands, redirecting, identifying what the defense wants to do, quick reaction, mental acuity – all the non-quantifiables – are really what makes a great lineman.

            I’d rather the Lofa Tatupu of lineman than the Aaron Curry. Get players that understand the game and their positions. If it is also coupled with athleticism then so much the better. But technique first. Prove you can block.

            • Tony

              Yes Saxon! they are missing very important qualities of OL play if they just assume athleticism and explosion is what defines a good OL. And based on our success with the guys listed above, it’s an unproven method that has had poor results.

  9. Sam Jaffe

    Uggh. This just means they’ll be taking Brandon Shell in the first round. Any compilation of non-combine online broad jumps from pro days that folks can point me to?

    • Volume12

      Here’s some of them. They aren’t all in yet.

    • HI Hawk

      It’s the cheapest way to build an offensive line and at this point the Seahawks have to save money somewhere. After all, they have to pay for one of the best defenses of all time AND a franchise QB. First world problems my man.

    • HI Hawk

      It really just opens the doors for late round picks, it doesn’t shut the door on good players. Whitehair is still in play, as are Ifedi or Spriggs.

      • C-Dog

        I’d put Clark in there as well, potentially.

  10. Volume12

    Rob, your a keyboard killer when it comes to the Hawks my man.

    Thing that stood out to me about this piece.

    Some ask why are measurables important along the O-line? This isn’t the old days. You have to evolve or else your career will dissolve.

    Point being? The premier athletes are on the defensive side of the ball nowadays, as you noted.

    • Rob Staton

      You are 100% correct V12.

      Nailed it.

    • Darnell


      Which is one of the reasons why I’m totally cool with not investing big FA money on olinemen. The likes of Aaaron Donald and JJ Watt are going to dominate no matter who you put in front of them (Mack, Boone, Osemele – whoever).

      The olineman that can slow Donald or Watt doesn’t currently exist at any level of football. The rare ones are chilling in Canton like Walt Jones and Larry Allen (two athletes that would have been HOFers on either side of the ball).

      Expensive or inexpensive oline, either way, defensive beasts are going to make it tough on.

      RW thankfully puts the Hawks in a position to open up the playbook to include plays that mitigate the impact of dominant defensive linemen just by the very structure of the play (slowing DEs with run threats; sprints and rollouts away from instant pressure).

      • HI Hawk

        Very good points Darnell. This is exactly why I’d prefer to load up on some more “defensive beasts” as you call them and continue to invest low and coach up the offensive line. I think it’s a better use of resources.

    • Jarhead

      It is just identifying which particular tests they value at each position. We now have enough years to get some common denominators that could narrow down potential selections. Some are clear, others are a little harder to figure out

    • mishima

      Agree, but you’ll rarely be able to counter a defense’s athletic advantage, even with comparable athletes. Also, how accurate do the combine numbers reflect potential success in various schemes? ZBS requires unique players that combine smarts, ‘explosion,’ and agility.

      Related: Knowing you can’t match up with defenses, the real evolution will occur in schemes and strategy. Combine a mobile QB with players like Ervin (Graham/Harvin, before) and you have an effective counter.

  11. Nick

    Also, Henry told NFL Network that he’s met with SEA. PCJS said they wanted to get tougher this season…

  12. TannerM

    What’s anybody’s thoughts on Brandon Shell? profiles him as strictly a right tackle because he can’t handle edge rushers that well to be a left tackle and he can’t bend well enough to be a guard. But his athletic numbers match up very well with Ifedi.

    As for other offensive linemen that might fit the broad jump/length combo: Jordan Swindle, Kentucky (9.42’/34″), Jarell Broxton (9.5’/33.5″) and Givens Price (9.17’/34.75″). At least, that’s what Zach Whitman’s 3Sigma Athlete chart says.

  13. Kip Earlywine

    Brilliant stuff Rob.

    • Rob Staton

      Thanks Kip 🙂

  14. Kip Earlywine

    Le’Raven Clark performed a broad jump of 9 feet, 1 inch at his pro-day. To date he is the only tackle prospect (that we know of) to have met with the Seahawks. Clark met with the team at the NFL combine.

    • Volume12

      Are ya talking Tackle prospect at the next level?

      Because they’ve met with Wazzu’s Joe Dahl twice, worked him out as a C at his pro day, and RT Justin Murray was a VMAC visitor, but I’m assuming you saw that.

      • Trevor

        Vol I think if Dahl is there in the 3rd round I would almost be surprised if the Hawks did not take him. Ticks the athletic boxes and super versatile. I think him Haeg or Mcgovern along with Ervin at Rb would be our (2) 3rd round picks if still on the board.

        • sdcoug

          I replied to one of your previous comments above Trev, re: Dahl. I won’t repost here, but Dahls lateral footspeed (in addition to broad), is tremendous. It allows his to recover when those explosive D-tackles get a step on him. So valuable…can you recover when others might be beat?

      • CHawk Talker Eric

        Add Lene Maiava and Josh Garnett.

    • Rob Staton

      I will add Clark’s name to the list.

    • Trevor

      That is a good # of a guy his size.

  15. Volume12

    Anyone interested, here’s Boise St’s Rees Odhiambo’s pro day #s

    7’9 broad jump (ughh), 4.7 SS, 27″ vert, and 6.85 3 cone.

    Safe to say thay IF Seattle is in fact intetested in him, he’d be the 1st with a sub 9″ foot broad jump.

    • Rob Staton

      Pauline ranks him in R5-6.

      Wonder if he ultimately is a target, whether it’s merely with an UDFA grade. Marcus Henry universally seems to have an UDFA mark.

      • Volume12

        Was wondering the same.

        Or was it a 9’7 broad jump and is a misprint?

        A lot of these O-lineman they seem to be intetested in are day 3-UDFA types.

        • James

          ..ssssshhhhh! John paid for that misprint. It was 9-7 and John is trying to stash him.

          • EranUngar

            9-7 broad jump plus sub 7 3-cone???

            He will be picked by the 4th round (using our tarde back pick from the 1st round…)

            • EranUngar

              Has serious durability issues….

    • CharlieTheUnicorn

      *scratches him off the Seattle list*

  16. James

    Rob, I like it when science and art meet. Ever since the combine, I have been posting comments saying that Spriggs is clearly the most Seahawky OL and get ready for the Hoosier in Seattle. But that was based mainly on eye-balling his footwork, which is clearly much quicker than the other OTs. Now you have produced the measurable proof.

  17. Naks8

    Anyone know what webb or sowell jumped? I’m interested to see if fa’s apply to this rule too

    • Rob Staton

      Both jumped in the 8-6 range.

      A surprising difference to their draft history. I suspect there might be a ‘NFL tape’ aspect that they go with for FA’s.

      • GeoffU

        And you’re also very limited by who’s available, FA is slim pickings.

      • pqlqi

        without looking it up, it’s also possible that their “criteria” is the result of their long jump normalized to height and or weight

  18. CharlieTheUnicorn

    “Incredible pro day puts German Moritz Boehringer on NFL radar”

    Officially at Florida Atlantic’s pro day, Boehringer ran a 4.43-second 40-yard dash, had a vertical of 39 inches, a 10-foot-11 broad jump, a 4.10-second short shuttle, 11.15-second 60-yard shuttle, and a 6.65-second three-cone drill. ~

    A previously unheralded player out of Germany…. who is gaining plenty of pre-draft steam. It is mentioned that he might go in the 4th round now….. and at 6-4 1/2 and 227 pounds….. I could see Seattle being very interested in the bottom of the 4th. They absolutely love tall WRs… he may not have polish, but he has some SPARQ to him. Of note, even on some errant passes, he still caught them, showing off some impressive hands. His fit could be a WR or perhaps a move TE.

    • Rob Staton

      Interesting guy.

      • H M Abdou

        He’s interesting, but I would keep him at WR.

    • sdcoug

      I haven’t watched film, but i read some comments from others who did. The consensus was he did a lot of damage on simple WR screens against bad football players. Would be interesting to learn more though

      • EranUngar

        P.S. – Since we used to adding 0.10-0.15 seconds to compare hand time with combine time, it’s important to add that he did his 40 time running on grass rather than on “turf”. Grass is slower so his time of turf would be even better….

      • D-OZ

        Man among boy’s…

    • Lewis

      I think somebody takes a flyer on him day two, provided he seems to have the right mental makeup. Maybe you have to use him in limited packages at the outset, but they can coach him on how to play. You can’t teach that kind of combination of size and speed. You’re talking a guy with similar agility numbers to Tyler Lockett (in some cases better), but six inches taller and forty-five pounds heavier.

      • EranUngar

        “The right mental makeup”?????????? LOLLLL

        Rob, please educate out american friends regarding the mental makeup of german ball players.

  19. Trevor

    For anyone questioning Robs take on the fact that DL prospects are far superior athletically so the Hawks are trying to find guys who can compete please to the following.

    Go watch the Senior Bowl practice tapes this year. In particular the Ol/DL one on one drills / competition. The DL dominated and were so much more athletic it was not even fair. Even the average DL guys were making some of the ore touted OL look bad.

    I think the Hawks are ahead of the curve in trying to find athletes to compete on the OL they just need to find a happy medium with guys who have a background / history in pass pro technique as well.

    That is why Whitehair would be ideal if is arms were a tad longer. He has the explosion they want and is a real technician in pass pro. If his arms were 33 inches I would say he was a lock to go in Rd #1 to the Hawks but since they are not I give Ifedi the nod.

    • Trevor

      Guys like Noah Spence who we know did not test all that well looked like all pro pass rushers in the Senior Bowl practices because of the athletic mismatch.

      • RealRhino2

        Don’t think anybody is debating the athletic superiority of DL; that’s always been the case. Senior Bowl practices mean little, IMO. Not a real-world scenario at all.

        • Trevor

          So one on one competition is not real world and means little. Ok I get it so they just do it for fun it has no value in the evaluation of players they just like watching them run into each other. Last time I checked every snap in the NFL involved some sort of one on one competition and usually the bigger, stronger, faster guy wins unless there is a significant technique or skill level gap.

    • H M Abdou

      Keep an eye on April 6 (Texas A&M’s pro day). If Ifedi really aces everything that day, he may not even end up being available at 26 – might go a bit earlier. Either way, it’ll be interesting.

      • RealRhino2

        He might go earlier, but I think there is a ceiling. He’s a right tackle or guard. Teams aren’t generally falling over themselves to draft those guys too early. I could see Spriggs jumping up the board more than Ifedi.

        • Beanhawk

          I do remember DJ Fluker going as high as #12 though. Brandon Scherff went #5. I think your point is still valid, but I think we are seeing the traditional drafting rules change a bit.

      • Shadow

        I keep wondering if Ifedi could go to Houston in the first round. Nobody has mocked him there yet, but given that they just spent $72 million on a quarterback….

  20. CHawk Talker Eric

    This stuff is gold. Pure, unmitigated, Seahawky gold. My sincerest appreciation and admiration.

    Well done sir.

    • H M Abdou

      Rob is the freaking man!

      • Lewis

        Agreed. It kind of goes without saying at this point, but still needs to be said from time to time if that makes ANY sense.

        The cool thing about this site (that some people don’t seem to get at times) is that it isn’t about saying we want this guy or that guy. Rob takes a look at a variety of scenarios and prospects that fit that style of player that attracts attention from PCJS. We don’t know who they will pick, but it’s pretty likely that whoever it happens to be, they have been discussed on here, even in the later rounds. That’s pretty cool, IMO.

    • matt

      24 carat solid gold. Great stuff Rob! Thanks a million for this fantastic blog!

    • Rob Staton

      Thank you guys — all of you. It means a lot.

  21. Steele

    Interesting piece, Rob.

    But to make it fair, to truly determine if broad jump accurately reflects performance, you will have to go to through the offensive lines of all other NFL teams (or at least the ones with supposedly best o-lines) and apply the same analysis.

    Complete players are the sum of parts.

    • Tien

      I get your point Steele but here’s how I look at it. The Hawks/Cable have a certain way to judging and coaching OL so looking at the broad jump numbers for the OLs of other teams, while interesting, it wouldn’t necessarily answer your question. After drafting the players, the teams will still have to coach them so it’ll be tough to determine if a certain OL player performed well mainly because of better athleticism or whether it was an equal combination with the coaching and technique of that particular team.

      This article is really amazing in correlating the broad jump measurement to the Seahawks’ philosophy and system in developing their OL…now, let’s hope they’re right!:)

    • Michael M.

      I don’t think Rob is claiming that there is a right or wrong way to do things, only pointing out the trend of how the Seahawks have done things lately.

  22. Steele

    This is all like the litums test for arm length for cornerbacks. A Seattle specialty, which may not apply to other teams, and does not by itself (without reference to other factors) equal high performance. Just “for the Hawks purposes on paper”.

    • Robert

      Are you kinda contradicting your post from 3 minutes previous?

  23. C-Dog

    Superb insight, Rob. It seems like every day I click on here, I’m legitimately get a closer feel for how the Seahawks might go about the draft this year.

    A while back, you posed the idea of Seattle taking Derrick Henry at 26. Honestly, it felt shocking to the senses at the time, but since they are met with him, do you think that’s a more legit chance?

    I loved with Brock Huard said on the radio this morning. He wants to see a OL/DL/OL sandwich with the first 3 picks. Here’s a sim mock showing how that sandwich could still happen with the shocker of D Henry taken 26, based on the broad jump preference.

    26: R1P26

    56: R2P25

    90: R3P27

    97: R3P34

    124: R4P26

    171: R5P32

    215: R6P40

    225: R7P4

    247: R7P26

    McGovern may take over at center. Seattle drafts Henry as the DT/DE (Making it confusing to the fans with two Henrys). Haeg completes at OT or LG. If Feeney board b/c of legit injury concerns, Seattle might jump all over him here. With FB also a position up in the air, maybe they like Baby Gronk. Worley adds to corner. Heath is the next DL/OL convert. Mickens adds to WR.

    • Greg Haugsven

      Pretty decent draft c-dog. Get a center, tackle, dtackle, and a linebacker. Plus a bonus 247 lb beast to share carries with rawls.

      • C-Dog

        Yeah, if it worked out that way, it would be pretty awesome, fills 5 needs of depth inside the first 4 rounds. Seems like OL, DL, and RB are pretty focused areas with who they are meeting with.

        My personal preference is OL or DL at 26, but hard not to get excited about Derrick Henry potentially being a Hawk, and I’m trying not to get too stuck on an individual player, or even position. As long as somewhere within 26 to 97, we see 2 OL and 1 DL, I’d be pretty excited about that.

        • H M Abdou

          C-Dog, that’s a very healthy way to approach the draft, and I for the most part will try my best to do that also. I am not overly concerned which specific players the Seahawks draft, as long as they are good players for this team, with reasonably good character (I’m not asking the players to have halos over their heads or anything).

          • C-Dog

            Here, here!

    • East Side Stevie

      No way seattle tales RB Henry in this draft also why get mcgovern at 56 when he will be there at 90 still

      • H M Abdou

        There’s a chance McGovern could be there at 90, but remember: the league now has more teams who have people with the Seattle pedigree. Oakland, Washington, Jacksonville, and Atlanta, for example. So the Seahawks will be competing for some of the players they typically tend to like.

      • C-Dog

        Things to consider. Seattle has a track record at taking players higher than where they’ve been mocked by the draft pundits. Irving, Wagner, Wilson, Michael, Britt, Clark, etc.. They follow their own board. The draft is thin at RB, much deeper at DL and OL.

        How much of a drop off is there from Whitehair to McGovern? McGovern checks a lot of boxes for them, probably other teams as well. I can see him going 56.

    • RWIII

      If JS drafts Derrick Henry I am NOT going to be happy. Seattle has never had any luck with Nick Saban/Alabama players. First of all Alabama players are INJURY PRONE. Seattle took James Carpenter, Kevin Norwood and Jesse Williams. How well have they played for Seattle? All have missed timed due to injury. Jesse Williams never played a down for Seattle.

      Number two: Do you guys realize that Derrick Henry had over 600 carries at Alabama. Henry had 395 carriers his senior year for the Crimson Tide. Henry is going to all used up in a couple of years.

      • C-Dog

        Interesting points on the AB injury front, RWIII. I admit, it would be an upset for me if they took anyone who isn’t DL or OL at 26. It is interesting that they are meeting with Henry, IMO. Maybe they are considering him as a R2 or R3 option. He would most likely give this offense something uniquely different at RB, and would be an interesting pairing with Rawls.

        • HI Hawk

          Henry only had one year of heavy use (2015 with 395 carries)), he split carries with T.J. Yeldon in 2014 and rarely saw action in 2013. I think it’s pretty lazy to compare him to a fairly untalented 24 year old 5th year Sr with an injury history (Norwood) or either of the 330 lbs+ JUCO transfer 5th year Srs, (Carpenter and Williams).

          Henry is a different animal, a unique talent in phenomenal shape that hasn’t had a long sustained college career or any significant injuries. He had one high-use NFL like year and took the opportunity and literally ran his team to a National Championship and walked off with the Heisman Trophy. I see his 2015 as evidence of excellence (Heisman), competitiveness (head to head with Fornette/LSU), and a championship mindset (National Champ). The big man is far from used up.

  24. lil'stink

    3/5 of the first team all-pro offensive linemen in 2015 had a listed broad jump of under 9’0″

    None of the starters for the Cowboys OL had a broad jump longer than that of Justin Britt

    I can see how the team might place more emphasis on this stat or that measurement or whatever. I can understand how it would help guide their decisions when it comes to drafting obvious project sort of players in the late rounds of the draft. It makes total sense if it’s the deciding factor when it comes to 2 players that they like equally. But if you are going to take a hard “no thanks” stance on guys like Kelly, Martin, or Conklin solely based on this one measurement then that’s the sort of stubborn, inflexible approach that limits your options. And I think the OL is the one position group that we shouldn’t be limiting our options.

    Not that any of the points Rob made are off base or inaccurate. It just really chaps my hide if they are as spot on as they seem to be.

    • Saxon

      I concur. But it seems like John Schneider and Pete Carroll really like BJs.

      • Troy

        i mean who doesn’t right?

    • bigDhawk

      I hear you. Broad jumping over nine feet versus under nine feet is not going to put any OL player over the top in being able to stop the best DL NFL players. We obsess over fractions of inches and milliseconds to determine sigma levels of eliteness, but how much practical football significance are the Planck-scale differences between three sigma and four sigma?

      Sokoli broad jumped a four sigma 9′ 11”. Unger, not so much, at 7′ 9”. If we could have a healthy Max Unger back, who would we trust more to open up a hole against the Rams front seven on the goal line to punch in a game-winning TD as time expires? Of much more importance for the OL is elite technique and elite understanding of defenses and how to diagnose your opponent.

      Players like Martin and Kelly may have Unger-like broad jumps, but they come from pro-style college programs and have a big leg up becoming the kind of elite technician Unger became. Honestly, I would take that on the interior of our line over players that can broad jump the length of Peyton Manning’s forehead farther, but we have no idea when they will become real football players with a clue.

  25. J

    Of the fifteen DL who beat Spriggs, one of them was OL sized – Sheldon Rankins.

    It is a lot easier for DL to test better than OL when they are 30-50 lbs lighter. Its just not a fair comparison to make.

    • J

      I mean, when you compare guys like Dadi Nicholas and Alex McAllister to 300-320 lb offensive linemen – obviously the small ddes are going to be able to jump further, higher, etc.

      • kenny sloth

        But that is just what nfl teams ask their lineman to do. They are being put out there against these guys. The comparison will be evident

        • J

          My point being – I think the idea that DL are more athletic is overblown. Its not that the best athletes are going to the d-line. Its that d-linemen can specialize and don’t have to be as big.

          Athleticism has to be viewed relative to size. Frank Clark and Kristin Sokoli are two of the best athletes on the team, but their pure test numbers are middle of the pack.

      • lil'stink

        I think the broader point of the more athletic player being groomed more for the defensive line as opposed to the offensive line is spot on, though. And when it is starting at the high school (or even earlier) level the effect is only heightened by the time the player reaches the NFL.

        • J

          I disagree. Its not that Dadi Nicholas is more athletic than Jason Spriggs – its that he’s 70 pounds lighter.

          I think DL do tend to be more athletic. But its a bit overblown IMO. And just looking at pure test numbers is misleading.

  26. Morgan

    Well this article would explain Terry Poole. Poole was a SPARQ outlier – most of our OL draftees are high SPARQ – Sokoli was #1 and Glow #5 while Poole was #43 – but maybe that’s just coicidence. Of the UDFAs we brought in last year Jesse Davis was #13, but Kamalie Matthews was #42. Both were +9 ft broad jumpers, though.

    The year before the trio of Garrett Scott, Gary Gilliam, and Justin Britt were SPARQ #1, #3, and #12 respectively but again all were +9 broad jumpers. DL converts Will Pericak and Kona Schwenke, also +9ft broad jumpers.

    The futures guys on the PS are sub 9′ jumpers, but I’ll give Nate Isles a pass since he’s 350lbs.

    • HawkfaninMT

      Wonder how Poole is developing? After the draft I think Pc/Tc stated he would be at LG… Any chance he pushes Britt for that spot this year? I feel Glow is penciled in at RG and has similar draft pedigree to Poole. Maybe Poole is the forgotten man that is giving the Hawks a reason to feel comfortable?

      • dawgma

        They haven’t been talking him up at all but I think they did hint he was nicked up or something last year. I don’t have terribly high hopes for him – if he’s not able to even challenge Justin Britt, he’s not good.

      • Morgan

        Like Dawgma said below, he was injured much of last year. Recently Carroll said they were “excited about seeing what he can do” this year, which in Carroll speak probably means he’s about to get cut.

        I get how they see the broad as a measure of explosion and they think they can coach technique, but wouldn’t it be faster to draft technically sound linemen and hand them a workout schedule of like a thousand squats per week?

        • Robert

          Hahaha…superior path to Olineman who can broad jump +9 feet AND PASSPRO!
          After Britt’s struggles, I hope they emphasize lateral foot speed and better technique. Britt repeatedly stands up too tall and gets swatted aside. But why was the uber athletic Sweezy so cruddy at pass protection? My guess is Cable spends nearly all the practice time on honing the necessary nuanced footwork and choreography of the ZBS.So I want mean guys who can broadjump, remember to bend their knees, have good lateral foot speed, good length and maybe some background with dance company. Teaching Britt the River Dance may be his best chance to not flame out.

    • Shadow

      How much different would our OL look today if Garrett Scott had been able to play? That one still bums me out….

  27. Josh emmett

    With the ammo of the 9 foot broad jump I went through the oline prospects a few times over. So like Brandon Shell is VERY comparable athletically to Ifedy. Haven’t heard much ruckus about Shell, played tackle in the SEC right? Maybe he is there in the second round and you can go defense at 26 and still feel comfortable with a guy with that size, athletic ability, and upside. Second what up on Brian Bobek? Looks great on paper, going to check some video out now on those two. Thoughts on Shell and Bobek? I couldn’t find an arm measurement on Bobek and he slammed 36 reps on the bench so I’m betting he is a T-Rex? Haha

    • J

      Shell a four year starter at tackle in the SEC. Like his run blocking.

    • TannerM

      I think I saw a video of Bobek jumping. If it was him, T-Rex may be an understatement.

    • matt

      I’d be surprised if Shell went before day 3.

      • Josh emmett

        Why is that? just curious? I couldn’t find much tape of either Shell or Bobek. Where do y’all watch tape? What sites? The tape I found of Minnesota(Bobeks team) a freshman, #71, was starting at center. Got to assume this if Bobeck couldn’t get past a freshman for the starting job he must not be worth a shit. Haha or was he injured? but seriously why a 3rd day grade on shell? Couldn’t find much on him as well. Still looking for a good site for prospect tape. Any suggestions are welcome! Thanks for rapping with me!

  28. bobbyk


    I’m still trying to figure out how you can have something so good each and every day.

    Awesome stuff!

    • kenny sloth

      So true. Best draft site out there. With respect to draftbreakdown’s vid collection lol

  29. kenny sloth

    Rob Staton; cracked the PCJS code

    • kenny sloth

      Also wanted to say i took a look at mcCalister from Florida. You would never guess he was 6’6 i had to doubletake 14 was the right player. He plays with great leverage and has a ferocious speed move. Plays responsible disciplined football. Defends the edge doesnt take himself out of plays. Not got any pop to his game, but OTs hate him. Got good preassure from both sides but as stated he only has an outside dip n rip. Really cool to see a player so tall play so low and not let ots get underneath him
      Injury and character red flags i have yet to find anything concrete on. Probably partying. Team violation twice
      It’s something they’ll have to decide on as with Frank Clark.
      If we dont want to take one high, McCalister is a speed rushing option at least availble til the early fourth

  30. Kip Earlywine

    Brandon Shell’s 9-4 broad jump at 324 pounds is pretty sick. His side to side agility on tape is pretty bad but he’d definitely be one to keep an eye on as a big LG.

    • kenny sloth

      Hey Kip, have you been writing anywhere lately? Always like your opinions on SDB

      • Saxon

        Me too. Where’s Kearly’s contribution?

  31. Madmark

    This is where I’m at now. I like Joe Dahl as the center if it takes a year as a backup, I don’t care. This is the guy I want. This guy has the grit and the intelligence to be the leader going into the future. Everything just ticks the box for me. No matter where he goes I just know he’s going to be a steal.

    • kenny sloth

      Don’t know how it might translate, but he sweats every interview

      • Darth12er

        Haha what? That’s so random, I couldn’t stop laughing.

        • kenny sloth

          He just perspires profusely in interviews. Anxious. Russell is anxious in interviews as well, so I doubt it’s anything major

  32. coachmattson

    What about Caleb Benenoch from UCLA? He has over 34 in arms and a 4.98 forty – one of the more athletic tackles from I have seen and yet I haven’t heard much about him. He sounds like he would be a round 3 or 4 guy. Thoughts? Here is what Walterfootball said about him:

    Benenoch played well for the Bruins in 2015. Still, he should have returned for his senior year to continue to improve his pass protection before going pro. His run blocking is definitely ahead of his pass protection, but Benenoch has some athletic upside. That could be seen in Indianapolis. Benenoch had a strong combine performance where he ran faster than expected. The former Bruin could be a sleeper pick who turns into a good NFL right tackle.

    Go Hawks!

    • kenny sloth

      I’ll check out some tape! Getting sick of these same prospects lmao

    • TannerM

      He only did an 8’8″ broad jump… If Rob is onto something about a >9′ jump, then he might not be on their watch list.

  33. JimQ

    Further supporting evidence here in the broad jump average #’s from:

    OT-C-OG averages = 101.07″ (8.42′) with average standard deviation of 6.36″. So broad jumps of >9′ would seem to be a viable performance “ledge”.

  34. Tony

    If the broad jump is an indicator of good offensive line play, how come none of the guys they drafted have been able to effectively block in pass protection?

    • Rob Staton

      It’s not a good indicator of offensive line play, it’s an indicator of being physically comparable to the vastly superior athletes playing defense.

      • kenny sloth

        And physically superior to their peers

      • EranUngar

        The greatest advantage that a good broad jump provides manifests itself in run blocking.

        Know any run first teams that may benefit from it?

  35. UKhawk

    Great article Rob

    Couple of thoughts /questions
    -Has the emphasis on drafting for lower body/horizontal power translated into a successful OL (yet?). I agree with the theory but not sure about the end product; it seems Britt is incredibly powerful but it doesn’t compensate when lunging in the wrong direction.
    -Doesnt it apply more to later round prospects when you are drafting more for potential/upside and trying to match DL physicality whilst planning to add a pro skillset? Here is where I agree with it more so as drafting higher round OL has been de-emphasised.
    -Seahawks also seem to emphasise lateral quickness for DTs which I assume counters the power of NFL OLs, wouldn’t lateral quicks also be a consideration for OL then? A good long jump is great but it helps to have quicks too.
    – Would love to see the stats in the top OL around the league in terms of their measurable do, not sure if this will stack up, esp for ones drafted in later rounds

    • CHawk Talker Eric

      Speaking strictly about LTs, only one in the top ten (Anthony Castonzo) had a sub 9′ BJ.

      • Ukhawk

        Thx Eric

  36. ulsterman

    This strikes me as a way to build a really bad oline that will continue to get blown away by any decent dine because you’re ruling out good players who can actually play the position well in favour of athletes who can’t. It’s the thinking that gave us drew nowak as our starting center which very probably cost us games early on. the ultra athletic sweezy still couldn’t pass block after four years. if we applied the sub 33 inch arm rules then the seahawks wouldn’t draft joe Thomas or jake long. are they really going to automatically rule out likes of Kelly and conklin on the basis of one test? I really hope not.
    JS deserves a lot of credit for his drafts but it’d be wrong to make him out as some genius who’s cracked the code. his last few drafts have actually been quite bad and imo it’s because of stuff like this – an overfocus on physical measurements. this article actually has me worried about the draft

    • Saxon

      Rob deserves credit for identifying a trend in the Hawks scouting priorities. But, I agree with you. There is clearly an overemphasis on athleticism and the failed idea that Tom Cable is a miracle worker and can turn lemons into lemonade. In Martial arts it isn’t always the biggest, fastest man that wins. It’s the ability to quickly use your opponents mistakes against them, generally in creating and exploiting errors in balance. It takes years for an offensive lineman to understand how to do this, and thanks to the Spread, many never adequately learn. Thus, players like Kelly who play in Pro-style offenses and demonstrate great technique against elite competition, should not be dismissed due to some arbitrary baseline for athleticism.

      I’m sure Schneider and Carroll know this or are quickly realizing that the approach of the last 3 years is not cutting it. They need experienced blockers not guys that look great in a Speedo.

  37. Volume12

    I’m not sure about crossing off Rees Odhiambo’s name just yet, for those that might.

    He’s still hurt. Has a bad ankle, and that it is surely gonna affect his broad jump #s.

    That’s showing off some toughness and grit IMO. Watching his pro day online, you can clearly see that his ankle is bothering him.

    Even if he doesn’t end up a Hawk, who better to get info from then the guy that PC was talking to all day, Udub HC Chris Peterson?

  38. H M Abdou

    How about THIS half-mock:

    R1 Jason Spriggs to play CENTER
    R2 Kenny Clark
    R3 Tyler Ervin
    R3 Connor McGovern

    • matt

      Why would you move Spriggs to C? He has the length, athleticism and experience to stay at OT.

  39. EranUngar

    Allow me to put the DL physical superiority in context:

    Over the last 2 decades, the NFL rules shifted to favor the offense and the passing game. The rules “protecting the QB” and “limiting contact with WRs” gave the pocket QB and the passing offense a clear advantage over the defense in the passing game. Teams, both in college and in the NFL are attacking more in the air and less on the ground.

    That has sparked the need to divert the best physical talent to the DL in an attempt to try and limit the success of the passing game. It also devalued the need for top physical talent at the OL since receivers can get open quicker and the QB needs less protection time and there is less value to run blocking and RBs.

    Still, while the DL has a bigger physical advantage over the OL, NFL offenses are scoring more points than ever before behind inferior OLs.

    In other words – The lack of quality O-Liners all around the NFL does not prevent offenses from being more prolific than ever!!!

    All NFL coaches and GMs moan about the poor OL quality but NFL offenses do just fine in spite of the Donalds and the Watts.

    The Seahawks are just another NFL team in that regard, trying to make do with what the market has to offer.

    With the spread offenses in collage taking full advantage of the above rules, offensive linemen are not only physically inferior to D-Linemen. They also have poor technique as far as playing the NFL type of game. Teams find themselves needing to pick their poison of the following options:

    1) Invest a higher portion of your cap & draft resources to get the few more talented player on your OL at the price of lesser talent elsewhere.

    2) Invest in top talent elsewhere to balance for the inferior OL. (defense and skill offensive players)

    3) Try to find the physically gifted specimens for your team and train them yourself till they are ready for the NFL.

    In my opinion, the Seahawks started with option 1 (Okung, Carp etc.). Then shifted to option 2 (Harvin) and last year decided to go for option 3.

    The 3 starters left from last year are all players after a red shirt year (Gilliam, Lewis, Glow). GG and Glow are exactly those physically gifted specimens that trained under Cable till they were ready for the NFL.

    Predicting that the Serahawks will concentrate further on O-Liners with the best broad jump over polished players like Martin sounds perfectly logical.

    Predicting that the Seahawks will invest 2 of their top 3 picks in physically gifted players that need a red shirt year when players with similar physical traits are abundantly available on day 3 (Glow, Poole, Soko) and beyond (Gilliam) is not so trivial.

    • EranUngar

      P.S. – I ignored Britt since he is the one player nobody here wants to see starting….

      • ulsterman

        glowinski was also a good player in college who probably could have started last year if needed. players like him who are comfortable in their position but are also great athletes are what they should be aiming for. leave the athletic projects to the later rounds

        • EranUngar


          The question is do you need to invest multiple top draft picks to get those players considering Glow was a 4th rounder?

          Assuming we think that a 4th rounder like Glow can be a solid O-Liners for us, can we say the same about D-Liners?

          It’s clearly harder to find a rookie that can improve our already good defense than someone that can improve our horrible OL, right?

          Maybe we should only draft 1 O-Liner in the top 3 and 2 D-Liners and get a few of those 3rd day O-Linerts (like Glow) or UDFAs (Like Gilliam) for the OL?

    • Rob Staton

      I don’t know why you’re so caught up on the possibility of two early OL picks.

      • EranUngar

        I’m caught up with them because i believe that a slight upgrade defensively will get us closer to the Lombardy than a bigger upgrade along the OL. (I.E. – defense wins championships – SB48, SB50 etc. etc.)

        Since our defense is already very good, as you and others are quick to point out, improving it is harder than improving the OL. It takes top talent to achieve that.

        I therefor advocate to invest more than one of our top picks to improving the defense. That’s really hard to do when two out of our three top picks go into the OL. I believe that one top OL pick, perhaps our first pick, supplemented by day 3 and UDFA picks, can yield enough offensive improvement. I also believe from what i see and hear from JS/PC that they believe it too.

        • kenny sloth

          It’s all about upgrading positions based against our current depth. Perhaps we could slightly increase our backup de or cb and have a potential *?star*. But they would almost literally be waiting for an injury to a key player. Only snaps to really be had are at nickle, sam, and NT which all come off the field for some amount of snaps. Or we could get one or two cogs to provide immediate competition and challenge for starting spots within our championship window.

          • ItsAboutTheDefense

            Show me a First Rounder on this current O-Line. How about any First Rounders on Our whole Offensive Unit?…
            There aren’t any. Seahawks build their Team with Identified Types of Players. They don’t think they need all the qualities that the NFL World needs in First Rounders.
            I don’t think The Seahawks see the investment made in players the same way as everyone else. We just let 2 first Rounders walk.

            • Kenny Sloth

              They value skills THEIR first rounders have. The only thing our first round players have in common is their uniquity. Even Okung had the 38 bench reps with those super long arms. Maybe you’re right in that there aren’t any unique OL players worthy of a first, but even with a trade down you’re essentially looking at the same prospects. I don’t know of many especially unique defenders in that range.
              (i would argue that Ifedi and Clark’s broad jumps of 9+ were pretty special at that weight)
              Let’s talk about upgrades.

              • Kenny Sloth

                Ah your comment below covers this!

        • Rob Staton

          But you’re not just advocating more picks on the defense.

          In nearly every thread you’re making an argument in an accusing way that suggests it’s all we talk about.

          Nobody is totally convinced they’ll take two OL’s early. Some of us think it’s pretty likely but that’s all and it’s right we’ve discussed it.

          You seem to have an issue with that.

          • EranUngar


            Seriously? I am trying to express my view and support it. Where in anything i typed above do you find “making an argument in an accusing way”?

            I have been labeled already and it seems like some of my comments strangely vanished after i saw them posted.

            I am asking once more – would you rather i stop participating here? Just say “yes” and it’s the last you hear of me.

            • Rob Staton

              No — but I can live without the complaining about what we discuss.

            • troy

              WoW, such drama!! HaHa I get it we’re all passionate about the Hawks but at the end of the day its OKAY if we don’t all agree. Some people’s kids… I tell ya.

  40. ulsterman

    I just think one of the strengths of this draft – offensive line – coincides with our greatest weakness, so it’s a great opportunity to address a real need with the best players available. the other strength of the draft seems to be interior dine. think they should go with those positions with first four or five picks, with maybe an Erin in round 3 or 4.

  41. HawkfaninMT

    My thoughts for now…
    Derrick Henry RB, Alabama
    Chris Jones DT, Mississippi St
    Connor McGovern OG, Mizzou
    Jaylon Smith LB, ND
    Joe Dahl C, WA St
    James Bradberry CB, Samford
    Tyrone Holmes DE, Montana
    Demarcus Robinson WR, Florida
    Brandon Shell OG, U South Carolina

    • Drew

      Jaylon Smith just squatted 400 lbs and said he can leg press 600 lbs. He’ll go much earlier if his medical re-check in 2 weeks pans out, which I’m assuming it will since he’s already lifting such heavy weight. If his medical shows progress, I’d be all for him being our 1st pick.

      • CHawk Talker Eric

        It’s very encouraging that he’s lifting heavy weights already. But there’s a world of difference between simple leg extensions in a controlled environment and playing in an NFL game.

        • Drew

          Very true, but the fact that he’s already putting that much stress on his knee is very promising compared to reports that he might not never play again.

          • CHawk Talker Eric

            JSmith is one of my favorite players in the draft. I sincerely hope he makes a full recovery and goes on to a pro bowl career. But the risk he never gets the chance is very high and for that reason I wouldn’t take him before Day 3.

      • reggieregg

        I’ll second that motion!!

  42. kenny sloth

    Tom Cable said at Seahawks Town Hall and im quoting so u no.

    “The cool thing about this group: they are all broad jumpers of 9 ft or more they all vertical over 31” they all can lift 27+ and they change direction the right way.”

    Softy says that magic number 31″-9′-27+ if u were making a lineman from clay?
    Cable “yeah”

    Then he probably spat.

    • Jon

      haha, and I think it may be significant he said “they change direction the right way.” He did not say a specific time for shuttle or cone, or whether they gather that from tape.

      Fact is, they want a complete athletic prospect (and by complete I mean good tape as well), but they don’t ever happen to be drafting where you can get that (top 20). Everyone complaining that they have ideals has missed the reality of how the FO works. It is not about what a players limitations are, it is what they can do, especially once the top shelf college talent is gone.

      • Kenny Sloth

        Shuttles range from 4.83-5.2 haha.
        I think you said it really well tabbing their desire for a ‘complete athlete’

        They want it all. Good Grades, Accolades, Production, Tape, Nastiness, Character,

        In that address, Cable also urged how important it was to them that they got guys that went and earned those combine numbers. They put in the work in the weight room and they want to win forever.

        • ItsAboutTheDefense

          Thanks for this insight, Kenny.
          I know Tom Cable’s viewpoint is the extreme end of the Seahawks O-Line philosophy, but essentially the comment about modeling O-Linemen out of clay says it all. This Team doesn’t need what others in the NFL do. A physical specimen can be found elsewhere.
          What the Seahawks have to do is identify the mental makeup required to learn a starting position in the NFL, from scratch.
          Look for them to avoid picking an O-Lineman with their first picks.

          • ItsAboutTheDefense

            In fact, I’d call for them to bundle those two picks to pursue someone like Rankins, who would provide an immediate upgrade to our interior D-Line.
            Three Down Defenders are rare and valuable. With NFL Offences scheming to keep Situational Defenders on the bench, having a guy who can handle it is Big.

            • Kenny Sloth

              I agree DT is a concern for me. Hopefully Jordan Hill runs away with that tilted nose tackle job or i forsee a big step back in run defense.

              • vrtkolman

                In my opinion our run defense is scheme over anything else. Mebane and Rubin were solid last year but nothing special. Run defense is always going to be great under Carroll.

    • Rob Staton

      Interesting, thanks.

  43. Drew

    So I’m curious as to Shon Coleman’s stock. I’m starting to think he might drop further into the 2nd round, when I originally thought he’d be a late first, early 2nd.

    We all know his age and history with cancer, but the fact he hasn’t been able to do any workouts due to injury, will that push his stock down more?

    If he’d last into the middle or late part of the 2nd round, I’d be all for trading out of the 1st and trading up from our native 2nd, so we’d have 2 early/mid round picks in the 2nd.

    Right now I think it’s really hard to peg where he’s going to go.

    • kenny sloth

      He might drop low low low! I don’t know any precedent of a kid entering the league overcoming cancer

      • Jon

        I remember a player that came out after beating cancer a few years ago. He was considered a top 15 pick his Junior year, got cancer, was able to get an extra medical year in college, went back and when he was in the draft he went UDFA. Cant remember his name, but he played LB for Boston college I think and the NYG picked him up.

        • JakeB

          Mark Herzlich I think. Think he ended up being fairly successful

        • Kenny Sloth

          Great memory. Looks like that fella was Luke Kuechly’s former teammate and friend Mark Herzlich. I think he’s still with the Giants!

      • HawkfaninMT

        Marcus Cannon was a supposed first rounder that went 3rd (I think?) to the Patriots.

    • Trevor

      Coleman’s cancer has been in remission for 3 years now and there has been no signs of any issues. I am sure they will preform extensive medical checks but I don’t think it will be a issue that would cause him to drop too far.

      The bigger issue is the knee injury that wrongly diagnosed during the year causing him to play 3 games with a torn MCL. The fact that he has not been able to participate in combine and pre-draft workouts is definitely an issue as he was thought to be a riser when the draft season started and that killed all momentum.

      I think there is every chance he could fall the the middle of Rd #2 maybe the end but I would not want to take that risk.

      I think he is the perfect RT for our system and is the nastiest run blocker of all the top tier lineman. I know Ifedi may have slightly more upside but for me Coleman is the guy I want as a player and character guy in the locker room.

      Ideally we take Rankins (I know I am dreaming) Bullard or Chris Jones (who I really like ) in Rd #1 and then trade our 3d rounder to move up into the mid 2nd round to grab Coleman.

      Rd #1 Rankins, Jones or Bullard
      Rd #2 trade up using 3rd rounder Shone Coleman
      Rd#3 Comp Haeg, Dahl or Mcgovern (whichever is still on the board)

      If we came out of the the first two days of the draft with that combination of players I would be ecstatic. It would certainly help with the OL issues and go a long way to ensuring JS’s sated goal of getting tougher on both line.

      • H M Abdou

        Ifedi has character as well. A player can be nasty and play with a chip on his shoulder even if he doesn’t scowl like Clint Eastwood and/or even if his body isn’t covered in tattoos.

        • Trevor

          I am not knocking Ifedi I like him a lot and would be pleased if he was our 1st rounder. I just think he is going to be an elite LG not RT and like Coleman more.

          Coleman will be available in Rd #2 likely and drafting him at RT we could move Webb to LG where he has shown that he is a much better fit than at tackle. So basically we fix two OL positions with one draft pick.

          • H M Abdou

            I’m worried about Coleman. His injury history (besides cancer) makes him very risky. And he has flaws, too. He’s more smooth than athletic/explosive.

            I think at this point the safest, smartest mock would have PC/JS taking a combination of OL/DL or DL/OL with the first 2 picks, then take Ervin on day 2 (and try for McGovern also on day 2).

          • Kenny Sloth

            If I may respectfully inquire what do you see that gives you the impression Coleman would make a better RT than Ifedi? On the field he reminds of me of Giaco without clearing the piles.

            Thats something i”ve missed in this class. Aint no hard nosed hogs.

          • Kenny Sloth

            Here’s a little mock projection for the day

            1.26 LeRaven Clark bc unfortunately Ifedi is gone.
            2.56 Charles Tapper to back up Bennett as it appears Clark is poised to transition to full time edge rusher.
            3.90 Tyler Ervin is a classic scat back with good wiggle and power inside.
            3.comp Devon Cajuste had an insane 6.49 in the tri cone at 6’5 240. In ten years, his is fifth. That’s the kind of unique athlete they target

            • H M Abdou

              I like the fact that your mock injects some new and different names into the first couple of rounds. I also like the fact (and agree with) that the Seahawks will look to draft someone who has a realistic shot at playing RT. I don’t think they will just draft a college tackle who MUST play inside, they want someone who at least potentially can play RT.

            • CHawk Talker Eric

              I wouldn’t be surprised if SEA took Clark with Ifedi still on the board.

              • Kenny Sloth

                I could see that too. Appears more athletic on film tbh

        • Jarhead

          Ifedi doesn’t show anything on tape that reads ‘nasty’, ‘edgy’, ‘mean streak’, or ‘chip on his shoulder’. He is mostly a grabber whose hands often slip to the outside of the defender’s frame, very suspect for holding. He uses a fast kick slide to catch the opponent and then just grab and hold on. There is no evidence that he has the intensisty that Coleman displays. And don’t let yhe fact be lost that he competed at a high level with a torn MCL. That is iton toughness. He didn’t even sell it. Ifedi is bigger, and until Coleman can work out, that is the only advantage he has over Coleman. Coleman is tougher, more pro ready, and has better natural form other than kick slide.

          • Kenny Sloth

            Great points Jarhead

          • H M Abdou

            Jarhead, you are one of my favorite commenters. Every time you post, you do so with total belief and conviction in what you’re saying. I really like that. I also like how strongly you defend Coleman. I guess you are seeing something that indicates that he’ll be a great pro.

            Technique-wise, yes, he’s probably better than Ifedi. I’ve kind-of cooled on taking Ifedi at 26. I’ve been hot and cold on him. His upside is very high, but he needs so much work, it may not be worth it. Might be better off taking a more “finished product” like Whitehair. Unfortunately, Whitehair can only play inside in the pro’s, so the team would still have a revolving door at RT. What else is new?

            • Kenny Sloth

              The allure with Ifedi for me is the tools he brings to the table. That insane kickslide and great strength and length at the P.O.A.

              If you want clay….

              • H M Abdou

                No kidding. His upside is through the roof. That’s what is really keeping me in his corner as a possible pick at 26. And there is at least a possibility that he could play RT. He’s not just a college tackle who automatically has to move to guard in the NFL.

          • Rob Staton

            “Ifedi doesn’t show anything on tape that reads ‘nasty’, ‘edgy’, ‘mean streak’, or ‘chip on his shoulder’.”

            This isn’t accurate Jarhead. He will bury defenders occasionally — certainly more so than most other tackles in this class I’ve watched (Shon Coleman is #1 in that regard).

    • bobbyk

      Marcus Cannon had cancer and the Patriots still drafted him. Coleman has already overcome his.

  44. Jon

    While I am on board with two of the first four picks being OL. Is it possible we are overlooking something that JS, PC, and TC see every single day. Glowinski may end up being an upgrade to Sweezey and Gilliam may be an upgrade to Okung based on his athleticism, upside, and improvement throughout his first full time year.

    So now what you are left with is the need to upgrade competition at C (perhaps Whitehair 1st, McGovern 2nd/3rd, or Dahl 3rd/4th) and RT/LG as Webb and Britt are the assumptive starters and we could add (Ifedi, Coleman, Spriggs, Clark and many others to the conversation.

    The Seahawks could view the dilemma more like this. If we can improve C and or LG/RT then we have added to our OL from last year because we view all other positions as equal or superior (LT improved Gilliam>= Okung, LG Britt/Webb/Rookie > Britt last year, Lewis or Rookie > Lewis and shambles first half last year, Glowisnki >= Sweezey at least in pass pro, Britt/Webb/Rookie > Gilliam first half of last year)

    Remember for all the Britt detractors, he still was the RT for a Superbowl 49 Seahawks as a rookie at RT.

    • Jon

      This is why I really want to see a trade back if Ifedi, Coleman, Whitehair, Clark, Bullard, Spriggs, Kelly are all their at #26. If you have 7 prospects you could live with and none you couln’t live without, you can move back 16 spots get Miami’s 2nd and 3rd, and a draft could include 2 OL, 2 Def, and Ervin in the first three rounds.

      • ItsAboutTheDefense

        The Trade Back is really the most likely scenario for the Seahawks, given they can find a willing Trade partner. They’ll have players they want at every lower spot. The later rounds have been more successful for the Seahawks anyway.
        The current Seahawks starting line-up includes 1 First Rounder, and he’s on the Defense.

        • Rob Staton

          I don’t think the ‘one first rounder’ argument carries much weight though.

          They have Jimmy Graham, who they traded a first rounder for. They would’ve had Harvin if he wasn’t a headcase. They traded down from #32 because they knew they could still secure their guy (Richardson) later on. It’s harder to trade down from #26 to round two than #32. They also spent their four first rounders in 2010-2012.

          I don’t think a lack of first rounders is by design. It’s just the way it’s happened. Moving down from #26 could be tricky because teams would be giving up much more to get from say 35 to 26 than they would to get up to 30-32.

          • EranUngar

            It could be tricky indeed but there is one possible scenario for it:

            DEN is highly likely to be looking for a QB (Paxton Lynch). Some teams at the top of the 2nd round are interested in a QB (CLE, DAL…). Those teams will need to trade up to 30 or earlier. With more than one team possibly in the hunt, aiming at the last pick under 31 is risky and one may want to make sure they get that guy at 26.

            Tricky but possible.

            • ItsAboutTheDefense

              It actually needn’t be a team that wants a particular guy, just someone who buys into the idea of quality over quantity.
              An embattled Front Office or a newly arrived one, for whom public reaction has become an element of the Draft could plausibly make that arguement. New Orleans, Philadelphia, even Cleveland would make the list of candidates. They all have positions that could use upgrades.

              • Kenny Sloth

                I actually appreciate that idea of trading up for your qb. They did it before with Minnesota and Bridgewater, but as Rob mentioned, the price would be significantly greater to move way up to the mid 20’s.

            • JakeB

              I could see a trade back to Denver’s spot if A) Cleveland doesn’t take a QB at #2, and B) Paxton Lynch is still on the board at 26.
              From there they could trade down again if they wished, but A) I don’t think either of those scenarios are very likely, and B) I don’t think the Seahawks are particularly concerned about stockpiling picks at this point. Only so many draftees are going to make the roster, and I think their willingness to trade a small fortune for Lockett last year reflects that.

            • Rob Staton

              I still don’t know what is special about #26 though. Green Bay are not going to be drafting a QB. Are they any less likely to want to move down at #27? Or Kansas City at #28?

              Not that I think Lynch even lasts until the 20’s.

          • ItsAboutTheDefense

            Your point is well made. Seahawks don’t mind spending the pick, as long as they believe in the value coming back.

      • schuemansky

        My thinking as well. Maybe would prefer to trade back in two smaller steps not getting an extra 3rd round but two high 4th round picks. I think there will be a lot of material left in round 4 and we are getting an extra pick.

  45. dawgma

    I guess the big question is….how do they filter it down? Because it doesn’t seem to be working very well. I don’t have an issue with trying to upgrade the athletic profile of the line. I don’t even have THAT much of a problem with relying on specific minimum standards (arm length, broad jump). But when the pool is narrowed that far AND you have a history of picking poor players? At some point the basic strategy needs to be revisited.

    I mean look at it this way: in the entire time they’ve been picking and acquiring OL talent in this era, literally dozens of guys, they’ve never deemed one of their own picks worthy of a second contract – the only player they signed to a second deal so far was Unger and he was on the roster prior and then traded away. That’s Cleveland Browns level futility in evaluation.

    • Kenny Sloth

      I think it’s that combination of market deficiencies and our FO’s belief in Cable as a developer of talent. Why resign him when you can replace his production with a cheaper, younger alternative. If they add two developmental guys a year they have two potentially waiting in the wings getting hungry waiting for that guy ahead of him to go chase the money

      • ItsAboutTheDefense

        Add in the fact that going this way with O-Line means the chance is there to really focus on another area. That First Round chip cries out for a High Risk gamble to greatly upgrade another part of the Team.

        • Kenny Sloth

          I contend they don’t only feel this way about OL though. So why avoid a position just because they aren’t flashy weapons. A first round OL could greatly improve an entire unit if it’s the right guy.

          I realize that i may be fighting an uphill battle, judging by your username

    • EranUngar

      Good question. Allow me to offer an a possible explanation:

      Our main investment in the OL is Tom Cable.
      We pick the guys he needs, we let him train them up to our specs so they enable a prolific running game.

      We use their services for 2-3 years and we let them go when their rookie deal is done. They get a nice contract elsewhere and we get the compensation picks to bring in the new guys.

      It keeps the cap cost of the OL to a minimum and enables us to pay for the core of our key players elsewhere.

    • GeoffU

      Okung, Sweezey, Carpenter, Britt, have all done more than most drafted into the NFL. I think maybe people are being a bit hyper-critical, which is ok it keeps our expectations high, but let’s be realistic. Being successful at drafting means you only hit on what, 10-15% of your players? First round you have only about a 50/50 shot (and we’re talking being a starter here, not a star player) and it drops off significantly after that. Most college players will not succeed in the NFL. How many defensive lineman have we drafted that have been successful? Irvin and sort of Hill? Every team fails consistently every year, Seattle just fails a little less. I think if we’d of drafted for DL instead of OL people would be complaining how we suck at drafting DLineman.

    • Rob Staton

      “AND you have a history of picking poor players?”

      I don’t agree here.

      Our perceptions of Seattle’s O-line haven’t been matched by the league. All of Seattle’s O-liners got paid.

      • dawgma

        I think that’s kind of self evident – they weren’t resigned, so they FO doesn’t think they’re good enough to be worth a second contract. Part of that is philosophy (they don’t invest in mid-range talent), true. But it’s also indicative of a ceiling imposed by their evaluations – using their metrics applied to screen dozens of OL prospects, NOT ONE has turned out to be above average caliber and a core, strength of the roster type player.

        If Okung really WAS a top-tier OT, I don’t think they’d have a problem paying him like one, for example – that’s the kind of talent they invest their cap in. They just don’t want to pay mid-range salary for mid-range talent and that’s been the absolute BEST result their OL grading scheme has produced. That, to me, is the problem.

        • Rob Staton

          They all got paid good money. I don’t see it as a review of ‘bad picks’ because the Seahawks chose, under a tight cap, to let them walk.

          They’re already paying Sherman, Wilson, Wagner, Bennett, Avril, Kam, Jimmy etc.

          It’s hardly the worst review of the O-line that other elite players took preference here.

        • j

          I’m sure if there was no cap a lot of those guys would still be Hawks.

          In a world with a cap you have to cut money somewhere.

    • CHawk Talker Eric

      “That’s Cleveland Browns level futility in evaluation”

      And yet they’ve managed to make the playoffs four straight years, back to back SB appearances, one World Championship.

      Hyperbole much?

    • H M Abdou

      I’m curious as to who you’d like the Seahawks to target in this draft, o-line wise?

      I agree with some of your argument. It wouldn’t be the worst thing to finally fix the o-line, once and for all, even if it means using premium draft capital.

      Other 12’s often argue that Russell Wilson enables PC/JS to sacrifice O-line quality, so that other parts of the team can receive extra attention. They argue that the team does not necessarily need a great o-line.

      I disagree, in fact, I think the team (with Wilson in mind) needs a BETTER than average o-line, especially in pass protection, because the QB is so short. Shorter QB’s require a line that is especially skilled in opening passing lanes (this is true of all o-lines but especially for shorter QBs).

      • Ground_Hawk

        I agree with you comment, “I think the team (with Wilson in mind) needs a BETTER than average o-line, especially in pass protection,” because despite how elusive Wilson is on the field no QB can withstand a constant pummeling like he experienced during the first part of the season. Wilson is making top dollar, and to continue on without upgrading his o-line protection would be foolish. I’m of the belief that picking up 2 o-liners with their first 4 picks would be a great step in protecting the investment that they put into Wilson.

        • H M Abdou

          Exactly. That investment the team has made in Russell needs to be protected, now and for the foreseeable future. Russell isn’t getting any younger, and he’ll need to play more and more from the pocket instead of doing so much improvising on the run.

          The blueprint to study is New Orleans with Drew Brees, especially the 2009 and 2011 teams. They had some premium talent on that offensive line, keeping Brees clean and opening holes in the ground game. They were more of a man/power blocking scheme, while this Seahawks team uses more zone (all teams use a mix of man and zone, no team is pure in one or the other).

          Check out the stats from the 2011 New Orleans offense, arguably one of the best ever:

          • Josh emmett

            I honestly think that the line has gone through a lot of change already just in the offseason without the draft. A new LT, a new RT, and a new RG to boot. I think a lot of you will be surprised on how they value the line they have. I think in the FO’s mind they have upgraded the Oline already. I think they view Gilliam as a Star in the making. He was arguably the best offensive linemen last year, I believe they see Glowinski as a better option then Sweezy as well. Then I think they are going to draft at least one guy(probably only one)in their top 4 picks to compete with Webb and Britt. Then the best of NFG(new fucking guy, haha), Britt, and Webb will man the LG and RT. They think they have improved at swing tackle with Sowell as well. So all that talk about how the line wasn’t good enough and consistent and that they are going to make some changes from PC has happened to an extent. Is it at a point that will make the 12’s happy? I don’t think so but I’m definetely interested to see what the new line looks like.

  46. Kenny Sloth

    Here’s a little mock projection for the day

    1.26 LeRaven Clark bc unfortunately Ifedi is gone.
    2.56 Charles Tapper to back up Bennett as it appears Clark is poised to transition to full time edge rusher.
    3.90 Tyler Ervin is a classic scat back with good wiggle and power inside.
    3.comp Devon Cajuste had an insane 6.49 in the tri cone at 6’5 240. In ten years, his is fifth. That’s the kind of unique athlete they target

    Accidentally posted this higher

    • H M Abdou

      Tapper intrigues me because you (or another commenter) said he’s got a good spin move, and I’m a sucker for spin moves in a pass rusher.

      If the right OL or DL player isn’t available at 26, I wouldn’t be against taking a CB there. William Jackson III springs to mind.

      • Kenny Sloth

        I wouldn’t say he has a great spin move really willing to use it and is quite agile. Very violent if somewhat passive in his movements

  47. Volume12

    Those Tom Cable comments are nothing new.

    He said the exact thing last year back in June.

    CHAWK, wasn’t that someting me and you were discussing during the Senior Bowl?

    • Kenny Sloth

      Nope not new at all. Yep town hall was in june last year
      Here is a link to a fieldgulls overview

    • CHawk Talker Eric

      Sounds familiar. I know we’ve previously mentioned their focus on the BJ metric for OLers; might’ve been last draft season. Anyway, thanks again to Rob for analyzing the data and presenting a coherent an logical perspective on their OL evaluation process.

  48. Volume12

    Did you guys see that Seattle traded to Michael Bennett was traded to Atlanta?

    April Fools!

    • H M Abdou

      I took a history course once, and the professor explained where April Fool’s day originated. Interesting story, I’d relay it on this board if I could remember it! LOL

  49. Roland jose

    Isn’t it also important in a zone scheme to have good agility?, due to also being agile enough to block at the second level?, doesn’t this type of scheme require athletic lineman to run?, agility is also important in pass protection, though the Hawks are not a passing team, but after this year do you think that they are gonna open up the passing game a little more so it helps the run game, and if so having agile as well as explosive linemen in the run game is important right?, I think having good athletic linemen is also important especially against these supremely athletic defensive linemen. I feel that the organization still hasn’t figured out evaluating oline men in general., it just isn’t working, and they, seem to be so enamored with defense that the importance of a good consistent offensive line goes out the window?.

    • Rob Staton

      “Isn’t it also important in a zone scheme to have good agility?”

      I thought so going into this study, but then I discovered (as noted in the piece) that the Seahawks haven’t drafted an offensive lineman since 2012 that hasn’t jumped a +9 foot broad jump. Alternatively, they haven’t drafted a single O-liner that tested in the top-15 at the combine for agility in that same time frame.

      • Roland jose

        Do u think the new rules on chop blocking have an effect on teams running a the zone scheme?

        • Rob Staton

          Possibly. Although you can still cut block.

      • Roland jose

        Now that we resigned Clemons, how does this affect our direction in the draft?

        • Rob Staton

          Confirms what we kind of knew already — that an EDGE isn’t a priority early in the draft.

  50. Mr. Offseason (Miles)

    Quick post I have to put here before I head back to work.

    Rob, this has got to be the most substantial and impressive piece of research I’ve seen from you. And that’s saying a lot. This is very well-argued and bold, and it makes sense.

    If it is true that the Seahawks focus primarily on broad jump, and they are successful in creating an broad jump focused OLine – prospects that other teams can’t see – the Seahawks could change the dynamics of the NFL AGAIN. In 2012, the Seahawks very legitimately changed the way teams saw cornerbacks. Sure, length was a nice attribute. Now? It’s possibly the first and foremost quality in most NFL teams’ scouting programs as it pertains to cornerbacks. If the Seahawks can turn broad jump specialists into a top 10 OLine, teams will take notice of this. The Seahawks would then change the NFL again, in the way the entire league thinks of an entire position group.

    Thanks for bringing this pattern to light Rob. The draft is going to be even more interesting after reading this.

    • Rob Staton

      Thanks man

  51. CHawk Talker Eric

    Earlier today Gilliam tweeted a photo of himself working out and looking muscled up compared to the end of the season.

    • Rob Staton

      He looks incredible.

    • Sea Mode

      Holy smokes! That’s what you get from a UDFA who has to work his way up!

    • STTBM

      Damn, dude looks ready to rock! Wonder how much weight he gained since last season? Looks at least 10-15 lbs of muscle!

  52. CHawk Talker Eric

    Chris Clemons back in the building!

    • CHawk Talker Eric

      Could be April Fools but it’s on the official website:

      • Darth12er

        That’s weird, usually their official site is the last place to hear about it. I like this move. I wonder if this changes their draft approach any

        • Lewis

          Nope, won’t change a thing. He’s 34 years old, so likely to be a rotational player (and he can make an impact that way), but they still have to think about the future.

      • Lewis

        On too.

    • bobbyk

      If they draft a Fackrell in the second round, I am beginning to wonder if Marsh and his zero career sacks and hurries will even be on the team.

      • Darnell

        Even then he’s a really good core special teamer on the cheap. Exactly what you want from the 3’s and 4’s on your depth chart.

        • East Side Stevie

          Seahawks Sign Chris Clemons! What Do Yall Think About That Addition

          • STTBM

            Good insurance policy who may not be on the roster Game One. He’s pretty darned washed up. He was never the same after his knee injury at RFK Stadium (dont care what they call it now, its RFK to me).

  53. CHawk Talker Eric

    Spriggs put up a 35″ vertical at IU pro day, a 4.5″ improvement over the Combine. Insane at 300lbs.

    Can’t find his broad jump results from today, but he led all OL with 9’7″ at the Combine.

    • Sea Mode

      Wow! Thanks as always for the timely updates, Eric.

  54. Sea Mode

    Rob, I think we are really close on the OL with these measurables.

    Add in Cable’s comment last year about not having their rear end too high off the ground causing them to lose leverage/balance and maybe that could knock one or two down or off the list?
    “I think when you look at the history of good run players, they’re the 6’4”, 6’5” body. Once they start getting longer and taller than that, their rear end gets a little further from the ground, and hard in terms of leverage. Yet, you can find guys that can do it once in a while… but they’re rare.”

    Here’s a good transcript of that interview (with paragraph headers for quick reading) I found helpful as a refresher:
    Also mentioned specific things they liked in Glow and Poole, besides the obvious athleticism and grit:
    – Glow: strong-handed, stays in front as 1v1 pass blocker
    – Poole: ability to strike people and quickness

    At this point, I think more than trying to work out a mathematical formula, the final two steps to figuring this out are:
    1. Deduce exactly what “they change direction the right way” means. This seems like it refers to something I remember JS cutting off Cable when he started talking too specifically about it in the past.

    2. Rank the shortlisted Seahawks prospects by versatility and intangibles (grit, nastiness, overcoming obstacles, smarts, willing learner)

    If we can do that it will just be a question of how the board falls, which nobody tends to predict better than JS, so we’re in good hands!

    • Sea Mode

      Oops, had this earlier thread open in another tab and got confused… will repost in the latest one.

  55. STTBM

    Late to the party.

    Really cool find, Rob, that Seattle almost never picks up guys who broad jump less than 9 feet.

    I would be willing to bet their analysis is a bit more complicated than just focusing on the broad jump–probably taking into account a height/weight/strength ration etc–but there is no denying the stats of their picks.

    Thing is, as others have noted, their draft picks on the line have been below mediocre on average, even terrible. They passed up other guys who ended up being far better players than the guys they drafted later, even some ZBS guys. To me, it shows they arent learning and adapting fast enough.

    And I totally agree with you that in the last five-ten years, there has been a shift to the best athletes playing defense, and the ones who cant make it on D-line becoming O-line at the HS and College level. Some positions, like LB, DE, and Corner always had good athletes, but they were often guys who werent quite athletic enough and/or big enough to play on offense–DB’s were generally smaller and/or a step slower than WR’s, LB’s were too small to play DLine, too slow to play WR or TE, etc….However, D-line, especially DT’s, on average werent too much more athletic than O-linemen (there were exceptions).

    I believe this shift has happened due to the overwhelming need to stop the high powered passing games in vogue for the last decade. Also, teams have begun using HUGE WR’s, some of whom are as agile and fast as small cornerbacks used to be. In response, teams have begun to use bigger, stronger DB’s, and use smaller, faster LB’s, and have begun recruiting some insane athletes with size and speed to DE. Not to mention the push for Pass Rush at DT has changed the type of player there too. Teams want strong guys with lateral agility and speed, and other than having one guy fat run stuffer DT, teams now want their DT’s to run sub-5.0 40’s and nearly have abs!

    Add to that the fact that with the emphasis on the pass rush, NFL teams are paying tons more for pass rushers and DB’s than they have in the past–and most O-linemen arent paid as well. Just as the RB position has become devalued, so has CB and any pass rushing position become increasingly valued (overpaid even).

    Why bust your ass and take physical abuse at RB or O-line if you can take the same or less punishment but make more money at DB, LB, DE, or DT?

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