Two days to go…

Will Luke Joeckel or Eric Fisher be forced to wear the new Jaguars' uniform?

What we’re doing on Seahawks Draft Blog this week

On Thursday I’m going to do another Google Hangout during the first round. If you want to listen in and interact with fellow Seahawks fans, you can watch us on here or at Fieldgulls. It might not have the production value of ESPN or the NFL Network, but at least you won’t get overkill coverage of Manti Te’o (Kiper), hear why every prospect is “awesome” (Gruden), have to face anything that Bill Polian says (Polian), or get Adam Schefter tipping picks. Actually, all of those guys are on ESPN. So, errr, the NFL Network is too loud. But try and make it if you can.

On day two I’ll do a live blog via Cover it live where we can discuss the Seahawks picks as they happen. Day three will be an open thread. Both myself and Kip will chime in with pieces on the players drafted too. I hope you’ll join us.

Joeckel and Fisher #1 and #2?

Adam Schefter is reporting that there’s a “feeling” Luke Joeckel and Eric Fisher will be the two players drafted at #1 and #2 on Thursday. I have a couple of theories here.

Yesterday I put together a mock draft that included trades, with the Arizona Cardinals (#7) swapping picks with Oakland (#3) in order to draft Fisher. Funnily enough there’s been talk today of a possible ‘gentleman’s agreement’ between the teams that would see such a trade take place if one of the top two tackle’s gets by Jacksonville. There’s also been speculation that Oakland really wants to move down, but keep a position within the top seven picks.

Maybe the Jaguars want in on the action?

Today’s report from Schefter could just represent a decision within the teams front office that they’re going to take whichever tackle Kansas City snubs. I still find that difficult to take. They have a left tackle in Eugene Monroe. He’s not Walter Jones, but he’s not enough of an issue that you’d need to replace him. He is a free agent next year but why not just pay him? Thus avoiding the need to waste time fixing one of the few unbroken pieces of the Jaguars roster? This is a team, after all, that can quite accurately be described as ‘hopeless’.

If the intention is to draft Joeckel or Fisher to play right tackle, that’s a wasted pick in my view. It won’t significantly aid the offense. They’ll still have to address the lack of pass rush, the lack of a secondary and the lack of — most importantly — a quarterback they can really trust.

They might just grade Joeckel and Fisher so highly they feel obliged to take either one of them. Or perhaps, just maybe, they’re trying to muscle in on any possible deal to move down? If the Cardinals are serious, they might be willing to cough up their second round pick to tie down the long term future at left tackle. That’s the #38 overall selection. And if they’re willing to deal with Oakland, why not the Jags? This could be a classic calling of Arizona’s bluff. And if it worked, suddenly the Jaguars are picking #7 overall with the #33 and #38 picks to come. That’s how you rebuild a lousy roster.

It’s just a thought, but it wouldn’t surprise if the Jaguars were being a little devious here. Either that or we know who the top two guys are on Thursday. Assuming the Jags do take Joeckel or Fisher, we could be looking at a top five like this:

#1 Kansas City – Luke Joeckel
#2 Jacksonville – Eric Fisher
#3 Oakland – Sharrif Floyd
#4 Philadelphia – Lane Johnson
#5 Detroit – Ziggy Ansah

I maintain a nagging feeling that the Cardinals will move into the top five to get their tackle. Simply put, it makes too much sense not to. I’ve not represented that here.

Dion Jordan becomes the X-factor in this scenario. Does Chip Kelly take him at #4 over an offensive lineman? I’m not sure, because Lane Johnson is pretty much a perfect fit for his offense (as is Fisher — both athletic guys). I prefer Jordan as a LEO or 3-4 linebacker than a pure 4-3 end, so does that push Detroit to Ziggy Ansah instead?

At #6 I expect Cleveland to take Dee Milliner unless they can trade down. Arizona could select Jordan if he’s there at #7, but they’re also being heavily linked with Chance Warmack and Jonathan Cooper. Buffalo appear destined to go quarterback. The Jets at #9 are a legitimate option for Jordan. That might be his floor.

If he gets out of the top five, he could be a trade target. With the Atlanta Falcons considering a move up, Jordan, Milliner and Sheldon Richardson seem the most likely targets.

Tyrann Mathieu misses meetings

According to Jason La Canfora, the former LSU cornerback has been suffering with sickness and had to cancel two meetings with teams. La Canfora insinuates that for most players, that would be OK. But this is Tyrann Mathieu. The guy who needs to convince anyone who’ll listen that he’s a changed man.

For what it’s worth, he’s still given a day-two grade by La Canfora (who only refers to him by the tiresome ‘Honey Badger’ nickname). I have mixed views on this. Part of me thinks, ‘big deal’. Part of me also thinks, ‘I hate it when people refer to him as HB, or Honey, or Badger’. But then I think back to the one significant job interview I’ve had in my life. I’m not sure anything would’ve stopped me making it that day. I’ve had flu in the past, food poisoning, the usual things we all go through. Although it’s easy to sit here and say this without knowing the issue, I think I probably would’ve made sure I was at those meetings. I think most people would agree there.

Let’s say it’s food poisoning and Mathieu either vomits or soils himself in the meeting room. In most cases, that would clearly be a major negative. In this case, it’d probably be a great example of how badly he wants to prove he’s turning over a new leaf. We can analyse these things to the Nth degree sometimes. Maybe I just jumped the shark by referring to a man soiling himself in public as a draft positive. Even so, I do get a bad vibe on this one and that would impact my own grade on Mathieu. And yet nothing surprises me with this team and I wouldn’t be shocked if they were the side on day two to draft him. I don’t expect it, however.

Seahawks linked to Nick Kasa

The Colorado tight end is apparently interesting Seattle as a possible mid-round tight end option. Tony Pauline describes the interest as “heavy”. Take a look for yourself. Below you’ll find his tape vs Washington State and Arizona State:


  1. Mike Chan

    I also everybody give a read on Derek Stephens and Davis Hsu’s draft board over here:

    • Kip Earlywine

      Welcome E=MC2.

      Really neat idea. I find I disagree more than agree on those grades though. I’m surprised how much i disagreed on the existing players grades in particular.

      • Maz

        Yeah, the chart is awesome, the grades are suspect. Still a good job, and a good idea.

      • dave crockett

        As a regular reader of both blogs, yeah, y’all disagree on a lot of players. That’s what makes this time of the year great.

  2. Train

    Looks like they are really projecting Kasa…those two films don’t make him look very good. Has good first step but has hard time staying engaged…ends up leaning. Several drops and poor route awareness–missed a hot route that would have been a huge play and ended up dropping the throw late vs WSU. Sits on routes versus man coverage that he should be extending. Lacks explosiveness in and out of cuts. He’s big and strong but I think he is a reach in front of round 5. Only 2 games, but I actually like Michael Williams better as a TE (he may be an OT). Rob?

  3. Aaron

    I think Kasa looks pretty good there. He definitely has some blocking skills. He’s able to shake off tackles. And he can catch the ball. Not spectacular, but solid. I’d still be slightly disappointed if they went for him, because I see tight end as a great area of opportunity for this team, and Kasa seems pretty average, or a project at best.

    Rob, is it just me, or is this draft exceptionally strong and deep for tight ends? Eifert and Ertz have gotten a lot of attention, but I just have the feeling that there’s a good chance that neither ends up being the best tight end out of this draft.

    I really like Kelce. I watched more video of him last night, and I found it interesting the way Cincinnati used him as a lead blocker in their run game. I’m not sure that’s translatable to the NFL, but if so he could also be useful as a successor to Michael Robinson, since Mike Rob’s role has been diminishing somewhat, and it’s widely thought that at age 30, his time in Seattle is short. I’d be interested to hear your thoughts on that.

    Kelce reminds me a bit of Colt Lyerla who plays for my Alma Mater U of O, and actually played for my high school too (several years after I graduated.) He’s a beast and should be a top ten draft pick in next year’s draft IMO.

    And then of course there’s my guy Fauria and his twelve touchdowns who doesn’t even get listed when people talk about this year’s tight end group. (Just had to get that in there.)

    • Madmark

      I really like Travis Kelce and think he would just be a terror in Tom Cable ZBS. Watching a segment in path to the draft Charley said he was his 3rd TE believe that Cincinnati scheme didn’t do this guy any favors. On other peoples draft he’s number 4. One scout says he plays with a gladiator mentality. He’ll need some coaching on running routes since he didn’t run a lot of routes with Cincinnati but he’s the best blocking TE in this draft other than Williams of Alabama. He did catch every pass throw his way, averaging 3 receptions for an average of 55 yds in 2012. His brother plays center in the NFL for the Eagles. I have him at pick 87.

      • xo 1

        Agree about Kelce but I think Kelce has some real buzz about him despite the rough off season. In fact, I am wondering if he won’t be an overdraft. No doubt he has real tools but he has always seems to have something dragging him down. I tip him to be a tease in the NFL – a guy who looks the part but can’t get on the field consistently. (To make an over the top comparison, similar to what I fear Gronk is becoming.)

        Matt Waldman, at The Rookie Scouting Portfolio, recently highlighted UCONN’s Ryan Griffin. He raved about him as an under the radar prospect. While I’ve followed Kasa as a developmental guy for several months and haven’t seen any signs of the Hawks’ interest in Griffin, I wonder if Griffin might not be a better value play. They are different players; if we picked up both of them, we’d have a real duo.

        • Aaron

          I have to disagree on your specific point about him having some real buzz and being a possible overdraft. I’m a pretty voracious consumer of draft news and info this year, and I’ve been particularly interested in the tight end position. While he’s been discussed a fair amount on this blog (mainly by me frankly), I’ve literally never heard his name uttered on TV, and most of the “draft experts” have him listed behind Vance McDonald on their lists, which blows my mind. What the hell has that guy done? When you consider that his stats are roughly equal to Eifert for 2012, and he’s a great blocker, I’d say he’s more of a hidden gem than a possible overdraft.

          • Train

            I think this may be why. Sounds like there are some charcter concerns;


            • Aaron

              That’s some interesting info. There’s more detail there about the so-called character concerns than I’ve seen anywhere else. I wish they would have been even more specific though. I get that he got caught smoking weed, and at least one person thinks he’s not a nice guy. I’d like to know more. In any case, it doesn’t bother me. Frankly I hope these types of reports push him even further down the board, because I don’t think this stuff will make a lick of difference in the NFL.

              Thanks for the link.

            • Madmark

              I didn’t seen anything in the article about Kelce at all, Am I missing something there.

              • Aaron

                You have to advance through by clicking on the numbers at the bottom.

                • Madmark

                  Thxs, 1 positive test 2 years ago and they brought in the Honey Badger. HHmm

    • Eran Ungar

      I like Kelce a lot too but..

      When you look at Kasa you have to take the following into consideration – The guy was a DE and transferred to TE less the 2 year ago. He is big, strong and relatively fast (4.7). Yes, his lack of polish in running routes and catching shows but he has the build to be a great Y TE. Maybe with a year behind Miller he can grow into a proper replacement in 2014 or 2015. He is a very good blocker and a late round high risk high reward possibility.

      Not that i say he is our guy at TE but if we don’t take one earlier he may be a possible project. Tom Cable likes those projects.

  4. kevin mullen

    It’s the whole “PacMan” thing all over again with Mathieu this time; once you receive a label, you become the label. It’s a shame too, I think between the two, defensively speaking, I like Mathieu over Jones. He needs to go undrafted and get picked up UDFA style and go out like Baldwin style, earn that spot. Get humbled and he can pick his team of choice should multiple tryout offers land on his lap.

    Anyone see the PFT article linking Mike Freeman’s “unnamed gm source” that this is the worst draft in 10 years? 2009 was bad but Kip laid an article out there about the late 1st to 3rd rounds were actually quite good, maybe it’s one of these drafts…

  5. williambryan

    I don’t see it with Kasa. Is he really an upgrade over Sean Mcgrath even? I don’t think so.

  6. Maz

    This Nick Kasa kid is really a “Seahawky” pick. He is going to be available later, after round 3, and probably available late in the 4th. He is a long athletic guy for one. He has a knack after the catch, that you may overlook. He shows a ton of effort once the ball is in his hands. YAC. In the video, if you look at the passes he dropped, they were bad throws. Behind him most the time. I agree he will need to work on his route running, and fine tune his blocking. He actually did a good job in the run game. However he did start his college carrer as a DE, and changed positions recently. He is the type of player Cable likes to mold into an efficient blocker in the ZBS. His measurable’s are decent. He ran a 4.71 at 6’6″ 267lbs. I also watched his interviews. The kid sounds passionate about the game of football, and more less switched to TE to help the team and get more PT. I could see the Seahawks drafting both Nick Kasa and David Bahktiari from Colorado.

    • xo 1

      Interesting. I heard a blog interview with Kasa where I came away liking him a lot as a man but wondered if he might be too nice. No doubt he’ll put in the work but I’m not sure if he has the mean streak / violence on the field it takes to thrive in the NFL.

      I was really bothered by how much he struggled at D line. I decided to reserve judgment, since I’m not a scout and don’t have enough experience to make such a call. I did like the work ethic it sounded like he had. I also came away from his interview concerned about his hands. If hard work can overcome that, no problem, but he doesn’t sound like a natural pass catcher.

      Bahktiari is also promising but I fear he’ll have to play guard in the NFL. He may become a top flight guard but I think there is less value in picking up a guard in the late second / third round for the Hawks. But if we had a hole at guard, I like him much more than Moffitt.

      • Maz

        A few things. Kasa is not exactly “nasty”. He is a worker. Everything that you see at the TE position, he just started to do at the college level. He did a good job at making his highest effort I.M.O.

        On Bahktiari, I have him as a T’/G combo guy, and a good T at that. He is another that plays with a very high effort. His technique is really good as well. He has a nice slide step, and doesn’t get beat often. Even though he may be shorter than Cable prefers, his height alone, will not limit him from playing either T position, if needed. He could replace Omiyale immediately.

  7. A. Simmons

    I’ve softened my stance on Mathieu coming to Seattle. I don’t think they grab him before the 4th round, but I could see them taking him. The traits that stand out are his competitive fire, his passion for the game, his knack for making a play, his versatility (7 sacks, 2 ints, 9 ff, 8.5 TFL), and his physicality. A CB that can do that many things at a reasonably high level is a good asset. The possibility of him getting arrested or suspended is high along with the fact he’s been out of competitive football for a year means he’ll probably drop to a day 3 pick.

    A lot of the pro Tyrann guys don’t take into account how much missing a year of football causes your skills to erode. That will also hurt his draft stock.

    • Madmarkus

      What is the deal about CBs. I look at Drafttek draft and they have us taking 2 CB in the draft and thats just pathetic. I realize with only 1 year having Winfield but we are stocked on CB and it seems a waste to draft a guy that likely not make it. I understand and if we don’t resign Winfield after this year we will probably go back to getting one a year but for now I think we are good at CB.
      I think Mathieu Isn’t as good as everyone thinks and I don’t believe its worth the risk.

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