Updated mock draft: 1st March

The combine is in the books and it’s time to take stock on where we’re at with less than two months to go until the 2012 draft. I want to offer three thoughts today, starting with this week’s projection:

– Many people are tired of seeing Courtney Upshaw mocked to the Seahawks. However, there’s no point deliberately manufacturing situations that have no chance of happening. This team is zoning in on pass rushers and will almost certainly have the opportunity to draft one of the big three – Upshaw, Melvin Ingram and Quinton Coples. While speculation is rife about the Seahawks making a splash on Mario Williams, we have to remember that Pete Carroll and John Schneider are on the record for saying they’ll build this team through the draft. That means a pass rusher in round one, with only one obvious wild-card alternative (a certain Alabama running back, who is too good to pass if available at #12). No offensive lineman. No wide receivers. Sadly, no quarterbacks. This will be a situation where a need (pass rush) fits supply (defensive end) and the Seahawks aren’t exactly hiding their intentions.

– The Rams will trade the #2 pick, otherwise known as the rights to Robert Griffin III. Several teams interviewed the Baylor quarterback at the combine, but the Seahawks did not. Many wondered whether this was a sign of secret interest, comparable to Mike Shanahan’s stealth pursuit of Jay Cutler in 2006. That is categorically not the case and Seattle will not be trading with St. Louis. The situation is like poker – the Rams have a great hand and they’re looking to draw others in to increase the pot. The more people at the table, the higher the stakes. The Seahawks have no interest in helping St. Louis drive up the price. Cleveland, Washington and Miami are all reported to have discussed a possible trade and the more teams willing to fight over Griffin’s services, the higher the price becomes. An inter-division trade was never realistic and simply won’t happen, so walking out of the casino is Seattle’s best move. They’ve left the table – not interviewing Griffin III was a statement to the rest of the league. St. Louis are still going to get a great deal, but at least the Seahawks won’t be making it any sweeter.

– Various sources are talking up Peyton Manning and Matt Flynn to Seattle, but I understand interest is minimal and virtually non-existent in both players. For several weeks now we’ve suggested keeping an eye on the trade market for a deal that isn’t abundantly obvious. What we know is Manning’s eventual destination could be the catalyst for a trade which would see another current starting quarterback move to Seattle. Before everyone jumps to conclusions and assumes Mark Sanchez, we also understand the team in question isn’t one which has been heavily touted in the media as a suitor for Manning. The deal is far from probable, rather just possible – and will depend on a.) Manning’s health and b.) where he signs. There’s no guarantee that a deal will get done, indeed it’s been described as more unlikely than likely. However, it’s worth noting that the Seahawks will be trying to upgrade the position this off-season even though they may not draft a quarterback in the first three rounds.

Onto this week’s mock draft. I’ve included a second round in the projection.

Round one

#1 Andrew Luck (QB, Stanford)
Indianapolis will need to work out a way to build around Luck, and fast. This is a roster starting from scratch.
TRADE #2 Robert Griffin III (QB, Baylor)
The Rams are trading this pick, the only question is whether Griffin III will be a Brown or a Redskin.
#3 Matt Kalil (OT, USC)
Minnesota won’t waste any time calling Kalil’s name. He has elite potential.
TRADE #4 Justin Blackmon (WR, Oklahoma State)
I wouldn’t take Blackmon this early, but the Rams need a playmaker more than anything else.
#5 Morris Claiborne (CB, LSU)
Linebacker and cornerback are the two biggest needs on this team, but they must be tempted by Trent Richardson too.
#6 Ryan Tannehill (QB, Texas A&M)
If the Redskins don’t trade up, it’s hard to see them drifting into another year without some long term thinking at quarterback.
#7 Melvin Ingram (DE, South Carolina)
The Jaguars need to improve their pass rush and will have the pick of Ingram, Upshaw and Coples.
#8 Riley Reiff (OT, Iowa)
The Dolphins will pursue Peyton Manning and Matt Flynn and could look to improve their offensive line to support such a move.
#9 Dontari Poe (DT, Memphis)
Players who weigh 345lbs and move as well as Poe don’t last long on draft day. Carolina will transition to more 3-4 looks.
#10 Quinton Coples (DE, North Carolina)
Moving to a 4-3 defense makes Coples a solid fit here. The Bills desperately need to improve their pass rush.
#11 Trent Richardson (RB, Alabama)
Richardson is too talented to keep falling and if he drops out of the top ten, he probably won’t get past Kansas City and Seattle.
#12 Courtney Upshaw (DE, Alabama)
People are sick of seeing this projection, but in this situation it would be a certainty. I’m not going to project scenarios that won’t happen.
#13 Cordy Glenn (OT, Georgia)
Glenn showcased enough athleticism at the combine to suggest he can stay at tackle at the next level. He’s rising in a big way.
#14 David De Castro (OG, Stanford)
Dallas could attack the corner market in free agency, allowing them to target Glenn or De Castro at this spot.
#15 Luke Kuechly (LB, Boston College)
Andy Reid has avoided drafting linebackers in the past, but may play it safe here and fill a position of need.
#16 Andre Branch (DE, Clemson)
New York needs to improve it’s pass rush. Branch has a ton of potential and can transition to the 3-4.
#17 Zach Brown (LB, North Carolina)
Explosive athlete who will convince a team early in the draft that he’s worth a high pick.
#18 Jonathan Martin (OT, Stanford)
The Chargers need to find pass rushers, but they also need to rebuild their offensive line. This would be a good start.
#19 Michael Floyd (WR, Notre Dame)
Floyd’s combine performance was good enough to confirm his likely position within the first round.
#20 Nick Perry (DE, USC)
Tennessee are another team that has to look at the edge rushers. The tape doesn’t always match Perry’s excellent combine performance.
#21 Dre Kirkpatrick (CB, Alabama)
Tall, physical cornerback who specialises in run support but his coverage skills need work.
TRADE #22 Michael Brockers (DT, LSU)
St. Louis has some edge rush talent but they don’t have a space clogger in the middle. Brockers could be BPA at this stage.
#23 Stephon Gilmore (CB, South Carolina)
A smart performance at the combine will promote Gilmore’s stock into the bottom half of round one.
#24 Mike Adams (OT, Ohio State)
There are some legitimate concerns about Adams’ play, but Pittsburgh may take a chance.
#25 Mark Barron (S, Alabama)
He could go much earlier than this, but positional need could lead to a slight drop. Denver could use a talented young safety.
#26 Stephen Hill (WR, Georgia Tech)
He’s a tremendous athlete who makes spectacular plays. It’s more than combine hype that puts Hill in round one contention.
#27 Peter Konz (C, Wisconsin)
Nick Mangold, Alex Mack and Peter Konz. That’s how good Konz is leaving college.
#28 Whitney Mercilus (DE, Illinois)
He proved in Indianapolis that he has the physical attributes to match his mass-production in 2011.
#29 Kendall Wright (WR, Baylor)
Wright could drop a bit after running slow times. San Francisco won’t care – they’ll find ways to max-out his talent in different ways.
#30 Dont’a Hightower (LB, Alabama)
The very definition of a defensive player who fits in Baltimore. A tough football player, simple as that.
#31 Casey Hayward (CB, Vanderbilt)
Bill Belichick likes to draft defensive backs early and he could entertain another cornerback with this pick.
#32 Fletcher Cox (DT, Mississippi State)
A great athlete who might fall due to needs elsewhere. A tough player to project, it wouldn’t be a surprise if he went in the top-15.

Round two

#33 St. Louis – Kevin Zeitler (OG, Wisconsin)
#34 Indianapolis – Alameda Ta’amu (DT, Washington)
#35 Minnesota – Kelechi Osemele (OG, Iowa State)
#36 Tampa Bay – Lamar Miller (RB, Miami)
#37 Cleveland – Rueben Randle (WR, LSU)
#38 Jacksonville – Jayron Hosley (CB, Virgnina Tech)
#39 Washington – Dwight Jones (WR, North Carolina)
#40 Carolina – Mychal Kendricks (LB, California)
#41 Buffalo – Ronnell Lewis (LB, Oklahoma)
#42 Miami – Chandler Jones (DE, Syracuse)
#43 Seattle – Doug Martin (RB, Boise State)
#44 Kansas City – Kirk Cousins (QB, Michigan State)
#45 Dallas – Jared Crick (DE, Wisconsin)
#46 Philadelphia – Brock Osweiler (QB, Arizona State)
#47 New York Jets – Alshon Jeffery (WR, South Carolina)
#48 New England – Vinny Curry (DE, Marshall)
#49 San Diego – Shea McClellin (DE, Boise State)
#50 Chicago – Jerel Worthy (DT, Michigan State)
#51 Philadelphia – Brandon Thompson (DT Clemson)
#52 Tennessee –  Brandon Boykin (CB, Georgia)
#53 Cincinnati – Mohamed Sanu (WR, Rutgers)
#54 Detroit – Brandon Washington (OG, Miami)
#55 Atlanta – Orson Charles (TE, Georgia)
#56 Pittsburgh – Bobby Wagner (LB, Utah State)
#57 Denver – David Wilson (RB, Virginia Tech)
#58 Houston – Josh Chapman (DT, Alabama)
#59 New Orleans – Sean Spence (LB, Miami)
#60 Green Bay – Devon Still (DT, Penn State)
#61 Baltimore – Harrison Smith (S, Notre Dame)
#62 San Francisco – Coby Fleener (TE, Stanford)
#63 New York Giants – Dwayne Allen (TE, Clemson)
#64 New England – Janoris Jenkins (CB, North Alabama)


  1. Colin

    John Schneider went on “Brock & Salk” on 710 ESPN Seattle this morning. I suggest listening to this piece, there is some VERY intriguing info put forth as far as stratedgy of building the team. He divuldges much of what he learned in Green Bay.


    Highly recommend everyone listening to this. You’ll have to go to the 10 minute mark or so.

  2. Dave

    Ok so….where is the interesting Hawks news you were speaking of yesterday?

  3. Misfit74

    The team is also on record saying they would pony up the bucks for an elite defender through FA. I still think we’re in the bidding for Super Mario. A Mario signing would likely preclude the drafting of a LB/DE in round 1. It’s also possible Robert Mathis is plan B to Mario’s plan A. The draft being plan C, possibly.

    Quote: “ESPN’s John Clayton passes along Combine buzz that NFC West teams believe the Seahawks will be one of the primary suitors for free agent OLB/DE Mario Williams.
    Clayton personally asked coach Pete Carroll if he would consider pursuing a high-end defensive end such as Williams or Robert Mathis. After much hemming and hawing, the answer ultimately came back “Yes.” While the Seahawks still have to devote money toward re-signing Marshawn Lynch and DT Red Bryant, Clayton believes they will have enough cap room to make Williams the NFL’s highest-paid defensive player.”

    I’d love for Doug Martin to find his way onto our team. I still think a WR or even an OT are possible…maybe even a DT or CB in round 1. I’m not buying the group-think and coach-speak that we can exclude all other scenarios but one of the top-3 rushers in round one. I think anything is possible.

    It’s cool though…I enjoy the mock regardless and the debate is excellent. Passionate Seahawks fans we are. 🙂

  4. Dave

    Awww nevermind I see. That SEA won’t trade up and are likely to land a QB via trade. Could Matt Cassel be a probable trade scenario since there are talks of Peyton possibly landing there? I know you know more than you are telling. Who do you see as most likely trading partner?

  5. Ben

    So for potential starting QB’s that could be moving here.

    Ponder(Most sense I guess)
    Kolb (But AZ is mentioned all the time)
    Tebow (wouldn’t that be fun?)
    Schaub/Yates(very doubtful)
    Flacco (Kidding, but Peyton jumps to Baltimore to add intrigue to the Ravens-colts rivalry)
    Orton(How thrilling…)
    Palmer(No. No. No. Becuase Peyton in silver and black. and Carson. No.)

    Any other ideas?

  6. Blake

    Let’s run down the QBs that *might* be available via trade:

    Not Available: Brady, Rodgers, Stafford, Ryan, Roethlisberger, Rivers, Eli Manning, Newton, Bradford, Dalton

    Free Agents: Brees, A. Smith

    Probably not interested in: Hasselbeck, Grossman, Painter, McCoy

    Long shots, but you never know: Romo (hmmm, maybe?), Gabbert, Ponder, Cutler, Vick, Fitzpatrick (contract), Freeman (though you never know w/ new staff), Tebow, Kolb (contract)

    Possible targets if Manning heads there: Schaub, Cassel, Sanchez, Flacco, Moore, Skelton

    I’d say the most likely would be Schaub if the Texans go after Manning, Matt Moore if he interests us, or Matt Cassel. Manning has been tied more strongly to Dolphins and Chiefs, so I’m going with Schaub; however, Flacco might be a sleeper if the Ravens decide they want to sign Manning and take a shot at one last CHIP.

  7. David

    Mario Williams. Sign me up.

  8. Norm M

    IF Richardson were to fall to Seattle, and IF they used his talent as trade down bait, which teams do you think would be interested and have a need at running back. I’m not saying I would not want to pick him, but much like St. Lois with RGIII, it would be a great opportunity to pick up a second or third round pick and still have a shot to fill the defensive need with a lower, possibly even a mid first round pick. Even with an extra third round pick it would be possible to bundle that with their original third and move up enough to get a QB and running back in the second. Those two picks plus best defensive line or LB available in the first would, in my mind, make for a perfect scenario. Despite your take, I will continue to hope that we go hard after Mario Williams. I’m all for building through the draft, but look what getting a stud DE in 2005 did for that team.

  9. Rob

    We’ll see what happens when the market opens. I’m only relaying what I’ve been told. The quote on other NFC West teams means very little IMO.

  10. David

    yeah i hate to pick apart a statement but it says “nfc west teams BELIEVE he will be a primary suitor” we were that last year with Palmer and Kolb werent we?


    I dont think Romo heads here due to Jerry Jones just coming out and saying he supports him and what not

    and Matt Schaub wont come here or Flacco, just my opinion though, Flacco is their QB and is staying put, same goes for Schaub, Yates came into replace, but you can tell they missed Schaub so i dont think thats happening

    I was wondering before the whole RG3 going 2nd if the Vikes would trade Ponder and for what cost. but seeing as they prolly wont trade up for him i see them sticking with Ponder.

  11. Matt J

    Rob, thanks for another great effort. You put a lot of time into this, and clearly know your stuff. I don’t despise you in the least for landing with Upshaw again — from my perspective, he’s the ideal first pick for Seattle (apart from impossible scenarios). The thing I’d like to see is “what happens if Washington settles its QB needs in free agency?” Because I think this is likely. You mention Miami seeking out either Manning or Flynn, but I think Washington could easily have the other side of that coin. So what other needs would Washington fill if not QB? And how would that impact the Seattle pick? What if Tannehill & Upshaw are available (which I think is likely)?

  12. Misfit74

    For the record, I love Trent Richardson. I’d run to the podium if he were available at #12! I’d also be happy landing one of Martin, Wilson, or maybe Miller in round 2 or 3.

    I wouldn’t mind Michael Floyd in round 1 and think he’s a better player, albeit at a less-needed position for Seattle, than any of the DL/DE/OLBs. He would clearly be a BPA scenario and likely would only happen in the event we landed Mario or Mathis (or other) in FA or had our board lining up a solid pass-rushing threat in rounds 2-4.

    I’m still intrigued by the QBs but can’t see one going to Seattle in round 1, though I think Tannehill could be a possibility.

    Maybe you guys missed this part:—————> “Clayton personally asked coach Pete Carroll if he would consider pursuing a high-end defensive end such as Williams or Robert Mathis. After much hemming and hawing, the answer ultimately came back “Yes.” <———————————————-!

  13. JoeV

    Someone explain how Upshaw fits into this defense? I think he is a great player and all but im trying to picture where he fits in year 1.

    If you say he replaces Leroy, i would say he looks too slow and ploding to cover TE’s and RB’s. Especially at 270+.
    So if he’s not taking that spot, its either Clemons or Bryants spot. If Bryant leaves in free agency i can see it but if he stays, as we all assume he will, then all you’ve done is draft a situational player at #12. Maybe thats ok, i would just hope that we would target a 3 down player.

  14. PatrickH

    FWIW, Tony Pauline has updated his projection over at his draftinsider blog (based on what his team sources told him – he claimed), and Courtney Upshaw has dropped out of the 1st round. As of now, the edge rushers projected in first round are Coples, Ingram, Mercilus, and Nick Perry.

  15. Misfit74

    Patrick – interesting he has Doug Martin at #24 and he’s one of only two RBs in his top-32. Floyd as the 15th player on the ‘board’. It would be amazing to land him at #12. The notes at the bottom were also interesting. I’ve been a fan of that site for awhile.

  16. Blake

    Maybe you guys missed this part:—————> “Clayton personally asked coach Pete Carroll if he would consider pursuing a high-end defensive end such as Williams or Robert Mathis. After much hemming and hawing, the answer ultimately came back “Yes.” <———————————————-!

    I listened to the press conference and Clayton kinda mumbled his question to Pete and then Pete did his Pete thing and jumped around in his answer. I took his final yes to mean that, yes, they'll explore all options to upgrade the pass rush. I wouldn't say that's an explicit statement that they'll go after any specific veteran free agents, but more that he agrees that pass rush is the priority and they won't rule out any free agents.

  17. Misfit74

    Blake – yes, fair enough. I thought it provided, at least, some contrast to the reasoning given for our pick of Upshaw in this mock draft. I really don’t trust what coaches say – whether it’s a quote I like or don’t like, agree with or don’t agree with. I have to believe the team does intend to ‘build through the draft’ – just like every other team in existence. They also have shown they’ll spend big money in FA for players they like and think will help the team. They play the draft and the market very well, I think.

    Mario Williams could be like when Green Bay signed Reggie White in the sense that players of his caliber rarely are available and I think the team deemed Julius Peppers too old to break the bank for previously. It does make me wonder how high they really would be on Robert Mathis given the relative youth of our roster/team.

  18. Your Mom

    Would take this mock in a heartbeat If………they get a FA QB.

  19. Steve

    Great work as usual Rob. I don’t mind the continued Upshaw picks, but I think you should consider updating Washington’s pick. If you gave them a better prospect instead of placeholder Tannehill, it could mix things up a bit.

  20. Attyla the Hawk

    Good work Rob.

    The move to get Williams makes sense, in that we have clearly DE/QB and LB needs. Getting Williams really alleviates the need to take a DE prospect at 12. Particularly since there doesn’t seem to be a great deal of separation between the top 6-7 OLB/DE prospects.

    Additionally, if you are disappointed because the better talents at that position returned to school — then if you have the ability to avoid a crop of talent whose best prospects aren’t coming out you probably want to take it.

    Realistically though, if they were thinking LB was a major need, then getting Williams allows you to address that liability. It’s possible they were talking about Hill when they said they wanted to improve there. But if not, then they will need 2 LBs to plug into the lineup.

    If they are considering a second tier QB prospect (Cousins/Osweiler) at round 2, then it may make sense they go for ILB at 12 if they can’t add picks and address DE with Williams. That infuses talent at all three positions of need that aren’t just camp bodies.

    I wonder if Williams opens up the possibility they look at LBs other than pass rushers.

  21. Rugby Lock

    I can see them going after Super Mario because hes only 27 but Mathis is too old IMO. If they got SM in FA then what about DeCastro? He has been compared to Hutch… and Hutch was a steal IMO at 17… Not a need I know but sometimes a player is too good to pass on. Of course if no SM signings happy I would be on veeeery happy rugger with Yorkshire Rob’s mock draft…

  22. Derek

    I think the Mario Williams interest could be legitimate. I remember reading something a while back regarding PC and JS are OK with signing a big time FA as long as they are around 25 or younger. I know Mario is, or will be 27 when the season starts, but that is typical prime age for defensive ends. Also, if we resign Bryant as well, That gives our front 4 a tremendous about of versatility. Imagine the combos you could have with Mebane, Bryant, Clemons, Williams, Branch, Dexter Davis??, and Pierre Allen or Pep Livingston.

    On Williams reasons to want to come here. We have a young aggressive defense with big bodies in the middle that eat up blocks. He can play both as a stand up end or with his hand in the ground, which ever he prefers. Our defense allows a lot of versatility. Also the 12th man. Imagine a tackle facing Mario with all of us screaming our loudest. If Mario didn’t already have a huge advantage, we provide even more.

  23. Ox Canard

    I alsop don’t mind the continued Upshaw picks. On the contrary, we should also make him the #2 pick just for grins.

    Coach Nick described him as the meanest player he’d ever coached. Like the “leo” position, PC could plug Upshaw into the new “meano” position right next to that junk yard dog Leroy Hill who will be playing pissed cuz he’s working cheap again.

  24. FWBrodie

    MisFit, I really think you’re clinging to some illogical idea with the OT and CB in round one business you’re pushing. Did Giacomini display anything less than an acceptable lower bound last season? I thought he was more than capable. Why would they sign him to a $3 mil contract if they planned on pushing him to third on the depth chart?

    As for corner, with Browner and Sherman playing stellar football, Schneider already calling Thurmond the Seahawks’ nickel for next season, and strong depth guys in Lewis, Maxwell, and even Trufant still under contract, how in the world would it make sense to go corner in round one? That would completely negate the achievement of pulling Sherman out of the 5th round last year.

  25. Curt

    Rob: Great job on the site. I look forward to each of your updates as the draft approaches. For me, the combine and the draft supplant regular season game action in terms of excitement. Just think, a few good decisions in free agency and the draft and the Seahawks will be right back in the thick of things this coming season. Can’t wait to see how it unfolds.

    After watching the combine, the player I most covet for the Hawks at #12 is Ingram, short arms and all. He’s intense, clearly loves the game, and will get every ounce out of his talent. His statement about wanting to play the game like Ray Lewis gives me chills because you know it’s genuine. He wants to make his mark and go down as one of the greats of the game. I don’t doubt him either.

    If both were available, do you think the Hawks would take Upshaw over Ingram and, of so, why?

  26. FWBrodie

    I mean do you see a weakness that needs addressing at either of those positions? Wouldn’t logic dictate that the best strategy would be to get the most talent on the field at one time for their money rather than having holes on the field with talent on the bench? I just don’t follow at all.

  27. dave crockett

    I know this site is devoted to the draft, but I wonder if you might say a little more about what SEA might be thinking in the FA/trade market.

    You and Kip have done that previously. Time for an update, perhaps?

  28. david

    I think Williams, if interested in coming here would also come do to the environment here, not only the team and city, but hes an outdoorsy guy, i remember him saying in an interview thats hes an outdoorsy guy, so what better place to play and live then the PNW


    I was wondering if the hawks take Cousins or better yet, is there any QB prospects that the Hawks might take that can come in and challenge Tjack?

  29. Griffin B

    Rob et al.,

    So here is the thing I don’t get about Mario Williams or Courtney Upshaw: it sounds like they want to resign big red, and sign him to play at least 1st and 2nd down. If that is true, where would Williams or Upshaw play? Do you play them at outside linebacker? I can sort of understand Super Mario playing there because he’s played OLB in Texas, but even then it’s not the same because they play a 3-4 (although I admit we play a strange 4-3).
    Could Upshaw play OL? If not, you put him at DE and then where does Big Red play?

    Thanks for the insight.

  30. dave crockett


    obviously nothing about Upshaw’s combine performance changed your thinking about him. I am curious however, did his combine performance give you pause about his ability to rush the passer?

  31. Misfit74

    I agree, FWBrodie, that CB is probably not very likely and you make a good point about our top 3 guys, including Thurmond.

    However, I don’t see a 3-mil/season journeyman preventing a team from drafting an Offensive Lineman and a lot of that has to do with how the team views Carpenter. Do they plug the hole with Giacomini simply until Carp comes back? Or, do they envision Carpenter a future OG – something that although not extremely likely is still a possibility to me. That would open up the chance to draft a stud OG or OT, making the journeyman do what he does best: injury-replacement and swing-tackle – backup. Other than Okung and Unger I’m not convinced of anything about our line being ‘finished’.

    Sid Rice and Floyd on the outside (Floyd replacing the snaps held by Big Mike Williams and Obomanu) with Golden and Baldwin playing slot and 4-WR sets seems ideal to me in this passing-league. Cutting Williams wouldn’t phase me a bit and Obo has no business starting or playing meaningful snaps. And, as we’ve seen the past handful of season: Sid Rice can’t stay on the field. We have to be prepared for that in the event his health never does settle down. So, I think there is reason to add a Michael Floyd because he may be an elite talent – and a need.

    Not all needs are as obvious right now as RB and I think if we look a bit deeper there are possibilities throughout the roster – and reason to consider BPA at any/all of our picks.

    That said, I think Safety is pretty set. Love the Kam, ET combo there.

  32. david

    Rob, i was also curious to what FA Qb’s you like or would like to have come here or which ones you think are likely to come here.

    i personally wouldnt mind Josh Johnson, Dennis Dixon or Chad Henne to come in and compete.

  33. kevin mullen

    Upshaw at #12 would absolutely be my ideal pick for the ‘Hawks. I think he’s an every down player and very versitile. I think he can play the SAM for us on 1st and 2nd downs, kick Bryant off on 3rds and replace with Upshaw, (cuz you know it’s basically our Nickel DEF that comes in) which leaves our WILL (Kendricks) and MIKE (Wright) on coverage. I would probably punch a hole in my wall if his name is called…

    Also, my ideal 1st/2nd/3rd picks:

    #12 Courtney Upshaw
    #43 Mychal Kendricks (our new WILL)
    #75 Chris Polk

  34. FWBrodie

    Misfit, WR I can understand. Sid Glass doesn’t instill confidence and BMW was awful in ’11. I would be able to get behind a WR pick logically. Still, it’s hard to justify 3 first rounders in 3 years at one position. Especially having seen the progression curve of young offensive lineman, Okung and Unger, AFTER their rookie seasons so recently.

  35. FWBrodie

    Can anyone provide some kind of assessment on Chris Polk’s pass protection ability as well as pass catching and route running? Last I heard he bombed those drills at the Senior Bowl. It wouldn’t make sense to me to draft a back that is an incompetent third down option since that’s would be the easiest time to take a few snaps from Lynch. Also, Forsett would likely be the odd man out, and he currently represents the team’s best pass protector.

  36. Jon

    For me, Upshaw and Williams would both be wonderful additions, even having both would thrill me. Picking up Williams would not negate us picking a DE at 12. Remember, we need to add pass rush and not simply replace Clemons. It may not be a popular opinion but I see Clemons having one, and at most two more effective years in the NFL. He was never elite and is still not. I love watching him play and his back to back 10+ sack seasons are outstanding, but he is getting older. I think that the ideal situation would be having Upshaw or Williams replace Clemons at LEO on 1st and 2nd down, and then Clemons replacing Red on 3rd. Sending him back to a situational pass rush situation will save his length of production in this league.
    Could you imagine having Upshaw, Clemons, Williams, Mebane and others rushing the QB in passing situations.

    Another thing that people may not want to hear is that Williams may just replace Red. Yes Red is popular in Seattle, and is a good football player, however Williams had over 70 tackles a couple seasons ago to go with his 14 or 15 sacks. Red had one sack and 40 some tackles this year.

  37. Jon

    Sorry, Calais Campbell is the one who had 70+ tackles and it was this year plus 8 sacks.
    Are Campbell and Williams both UFA this year. I think so, but may be wrong. What would be the signing price for these guys anyway, I’m guessing Williams would be a lot more but Campbell is an option as well. He has destroyed us for years.

  38. Dave

    Campbell will either be franchised or signed to a long term contract. Won’t hit open market. Williams will.

  39. Chris

    For the life of me I can’t understand all this mocking of RBs to Seattle.

    It seems a given the Hawks are either going to franchise or sign Lynch. RB is a questionable position to spend a 1st or 2nd rounder on to begin with, much less to use it on a rotational/backup player.

  40. david

    Chris, the reason for this is, Pete has put alot of emphasis in wanting to run the ball, if the hawks can have lynch run maybe 15-20 times a game and the back up maybe 10-15 times successfully, that is what theyd want, i think. They want Lynch to be able to get some rest and when he is resting,have someone that can come in and relieve him for a couple plays and eventually succeed him as the starter somewhere down the road.

    i remember last year getting frusterated with Forsett when hed come in for Lynch because he wasnt a good runner, least i didnt see anything, so there is alot of talk for maybe looking for a replacement, hopefully that answered your question.

  41. Ryan

    Rob, great work on the mock. Maybe on the next one you can share what you personally would do if you were the Hawks, and not what you’ve heard they may do? (just to add some diversity).

  42. AlaskaHawk

    Yes Forsett looked bad compared to previous years. He and Washington had their chance against Cleveland and blew it! He was one of my favorite backs but I switched to Lynch after his run against the Saints in the playoffs.

    I’m with Misfit on the idea of picking a WR. I just wouldn’t rule it out, and pick a DE or LB in the second. He’s right about the offensive line needing help too, but we just got so many needs that I don’t even know where to start.

    So I am on the fence about Upshaw now. There are at least three more good pass rushers that will be picked in the first round. I would really like to see them work out at pro day and convince the Seahawks that they are the right player. I’m not discounting Upshaw, but I’ve seen at least one draft that puts Perry ahead of him – and maybe that is deserved.

    ROB – you said that you wanted to use your picks to explore options – and you’ve stuck Upshaw in there a lot. Put somebody else in there and tell us why they should be there! You may not believe it is realistic – but convince us that it could happen!!!!

  43. thebroski


    Like others, I too would like to see a mock in which Washington does not reach for Tannehill.

    My other qualm with this mock is Reiff going to Miami. People don’t really use a top-10 pick for a RT, plus I think Miami is switching defenses. I think they will almost assuredly use their pick on a defensive playmaker.

    Also, was there a reason you catapulted Cordy Glenn above Jonathan Martin? Glenn had a solid combine, right? How did Martin do, or did he not participate?

  44. Brian

    Rob, I think you are correct in believing that the Hawks will go DE – but due to the depth of the class, I like them moving down 10 spots and getting an extra 2nd or 3rd. I think that still puts them in play for Nick Perry, Mercilus, or Branch, grabbing an RB like Martin or Wilson, and then grabbing an LB like Kendricks or Irvin.

    The top 3 DEs – Upshaw, Coples, and Ingram – don’t seem that far above the others, and getting that LB would help the team speed on the front 7.

  45. Kip Earlywine

    @Chris, the reason is because as the roster stands now, Seattle is super screwed if Lynch gets hurt and misses time. Further, Lynch might be gone by next offseason if Seattle can’t strike a deal. We need a 2nd RB who can step in and be a 20+ carry per game productive back if Lynch gets hurt, and also a guy who is good enough to take over for Lynch when he moves on. And those players are easier to find in the earlier rounds.

    As far as the trade goes, my guess is that the mystery QB is Tony Romo. Unlike most Cowboys fans, Jones is a Romo supporter, but its not exactly a secret that Jones is a huge admirer of Peyton Manning and I think he’d do anything to bring him in, even if it meant having to deal Romo after the fact.

  46. Kip Earlywine

    @FWBrodie, Polk is a willing blocker. I’ve seen him blow blocks on a couple occasions, but it wasn’t from lack of effort. Overall, I’d disagree with anyone that labels him a poor blocker. His route running and hands are amazing (which makes sense, he’s a converted WR).

    @DaveCrockett, Rob might know more than I do, but I haven’t heard any hints about Seattle’s plans in FA. I remember Schneider hinting many months ago that he planned on spending some good money this offseason, but we haven’t heard anything yet that indicates any major plans in free agency. My guess is that Seattle will make a lot of small to medium sized signings, but will probably avoid Manning and Flynn. Mario Williams? No idea. FWIW, Pete recently talked about how the team needs to add more pass rush from the interior of the line, and Rob and I have heard suspiciously little about Seattle’s intentions to draft a DT. That leads me to think DT could be an area they address before the draft while waiting til the draft to address DE. That’s just me speculating though.

  47. Kip Earlywine

    I wanted to quickly add one thing- Rob and I aren’t in the business of wild speculation. We only speculate when we have inside information that tells us to look out for something. Usually that information is very specific and accurate, but in rare cases (like this one) it can be vague. Because the original tip we received was very vague (“A big trade is coming but that’s all I can say”), that left us to explore logical options like Palmer or Sanchez. The other day we received an update and we now know that the deal is indeed a domino effect deal related to where Peyton Manning ends up.

    So anyway, while its fun to talk about, don’t expect speculation to be a regular feature here. At this point, we’ve put all that we know out there, and we’ll leave it up to you guys to figure out who that mystery QB is.

    For similar reasons, I just don’t see Rob or I getting into the business of forecasting free agency. I don’t think our guesses would be very accurate anyway, even many of our free agency tips don’t pan out. For example, last year we were told that Seattle had interest in Vonta Leach, but Leach ended up signing with Baltimore almost instantly after free agency opened up. The interest was probably real, but Baltimore snatched him up before Seattle could even talk to him. In the same breath that we were told about Leach we were also told about UDFA Michael Huey, who WAS signed by the Seahawks (and later cut).

    I do plan on REACTING to the Seahawks notable free agent signings, although from what I understand, Seattle’s success or lack thereof won’t change the areas of the draft that they target certain positions. Seattle won’t draft Tannehill at #12 overall just because they weren’t able to add a QB before the draft. At most, a key FA signing could alter the direction they go with a late round QB (if they acquired a starter to beat out Jackson that might allow them to draft more of a project QB).

  48. Chris

    Needing a backup for Lynch does not mean we must use a 1st or 2nd rounder. Getting a backup or rotational player for a 1st or 2nd is very poor value.

    And sorry to break it to you guys, as everyone loves to use the Cleveland game as an example of how horrible our backups to Lynch must be, but chances are pretty good Lynch wouldn’t have done squat that game either. Our offensive line was still horrendous during that stretch of the season and going into the Cleveland game Lynch was averaging less than 50 yds per game. The next game after he came back against Cincinnati he got a grand total of 24yds. Our running game has been, and continues to be, mostly a function of the offensive line play not the running back and Lynch’s play has in no way been an exception to that.

    As for backups, last year Leon averaged 4.7 ypc compared to Lynch’s 4.2.

    I’m not saying Leon is a better back (he’s not), or should even be the main backup necessarily, but the sentiment that Lynch is our total offense (even though he had horrible yards per game for nearly a year and a half until the last 8 games last season when the line finally started figuring things out) and that our backups are complete garbage, is seriously over-stating the issue.

    I don’t have any problems with spending a 4th or so on a backup, but there will be quality every down starters available at real positions of need in the 2nd round.

  49. Matthew Baldwin

    I’m hoping Richardson or Blackmon falls to us at 12. We need touchdown makers. We need to win the TOP battle. You can’t go 3 and out and win in this league.

    We’re a punt, punt, punt, FG, turnover, punt team.

    I understand the excitment with some of the elite D prospects but our D ranked 7th in points allowed last year. Do we win the division if our D improves to 5th? Doubt it.

    Our O ranked 23rd in points scored. That’s the low hanging fruit IMO.

    Last off season we talked about lack of turnovers on D. “If only we had more turnovers, we’d win more games” was a reoccurring theme (along with D sacks).

    2010: -9 turnovers. 2011: +8 turnovers. I don’t need to remind readers of this site how many more games we won in 2011.

    Our O can’t do anything with the ball if our D gets it back via turnover or a sack killing drive.

    I really think the speed on the front 7 PC so publicaly refers to as a need is going to come in the 2nd/3rd round.

    1st: RB Trent Richardson/WR Justin Backmon
    2nd: DE Vinny Curry/ILB Mychal Kendricks
    3rd: OLB Lavonte David/DE Chandler Jones

  50. Kip Earlywine

    @Chris, its not just a backup. Its Lynch’s future (potentially near future) replacement.

  51. Turp

    I’m going to totally disagree with you Chris. I would love to grab a RB in the early rounds. After watching last season it seems glaringly obvious that our offense stinks without Lynch. Therefore, relying on Lynch to be healthy is quite a risk for an offense that has confessed to being run dominant. I would love to grab a guy like Martin. He can be as good as Lynch while covering a ton of risk if Lynch gets hurt.

    I don’t agree with your Leon YPC argument either. Most of his runs were situational, so YPC is quite misleading. Leon fails the eye test, as does Forsett. When they tried to pound the ball like they did with Lynch, Leon sucked. Bad. Our backups ARE garbage. If we were a pass heavy offense, then we would be less likely to spend an early round pick on a running back. But we are not. This is a running offense. You need more than one good back to succeed with a rush offense in the NFL.

  52. Hector

    Rob & Kip, I must start by thanking you both for the work you put into this blog, and the tremendous NFL roster-building forum that has grown here.

    I have no problem with the mock drafts that go up each week. Be it the exploratory changing Seahawks picks from pre-February, or the more recent recurring Upshaw mocks. If Rob is certain that the Seahawks have narrowed down the options at #12 this close to the draft, then I appreciate the honesty and useful information as opposed to having various different prospects slotted at #12 to try and generate traffic.

    Regarding the helpful nuggets of non-draft prospect personnel, well I apologize because I am all for the wild speculation and potential what-if scenarios that come from the more vague information we Seahawk junkies can glean. That being said, my list of mystery Starting Caliber QB’s alluded to in the post!

    Jay Cutler – The Bears have a short window before their more talented players can no longer contribute at a contender quality level (Briggs, Urlacher, Peppers, their O-Line for sure) Perhaps they just don’t see Cutty as a QB to take them to the promised land.

    Matt Schaub – The Texans have a run game, a very solid defense, and reliable options in Andre Johnson and Owen Daniels. A healthy Peyton would make them serious AFC contenders.

    Joe Flacco – The Ravens may have had their best chance to win the AFC, and Flacco’s inconsistent performances and an aging defense may have Ozzie Newsome thinking about the team’s potential with a healthy Peyton Manning. Yes it’s mortgaging the future, but given Flacco’s recent comments about getting paid, perhaps its not such a bright future WITH Flacco involved.

    Tony Romo – Jerry Jones loves making a splash. Romo’s due a lot of money, so in addition to better quarterback play with healthy Peyton, it could come at a cheaper cost.

    Matt Cassel – The Chiefs are interested in Manning, but not as heavily favored as the Dolphins and Redskins. If they did land him, trading away Cassel would give the Chiefs even more cap room and picks to try and reach contender-level.

    Tim Tebow – A clear upgrade at QB for the Broncos. For anyone that heard JS tell Brock & Salk about Tebow “tilting the field” in Colin’s link, its safe to begin freaking out.

    Carson Palmer – I don’t see the Raiders landing Manning, however if he were healthy and chose to go to KC or Denver, perhaps Reggie McKenzie concedes defeat to his AFC West rivals and starts decimating the roster to accumulate draft capital and cap space in order to return the Raiders to former glory sooner rather than be mired in mediocrity for years. Definitely the “domino effect.’

    Blaine Gabbert – Shahid Khan just purchased the Jaguars and has been very outgoing with regards to media interviews about some of his concerns for the struggling franchise. I see this as similar to Mohamed Al-Fayed when he first purchased Fulham FC, or Al Fahim at Portsmouth (which went into administration). The novice owner comes in with bold moves that try and generate large public interest in a top-team but actually hurt the work of their own hired pros (Smith, Mularkey). I don’t see the Jaguars as appealing to Manning as other teams, but Rob did say the deal was unlikely. Maybe Peyton just really wants to beat Luck and the Colts twice a year in addition to trying to win an SB.

    Josh Freeman – A total dark horse pick which makes little sense if I’m a Bucs fan, but I have no idea what to expect from Schiano and his staff, and the Glazers and Mark Dominik work very quietly. The Bucs have $60m in cap room, and Manning could certainly bring professionalism, and discipline to a locker room clearly in need of it.

    Kip’s posted an article about Keith Price and the concept of the point guard QB. PCJS have described the ideal QB numerous times, though the talking points as of late have had more to do with this QB being “the guy” and tilting the field and I’ve heard less about mobility. My top candidates for mystery QB: Palmer, Romo, Schaub, Tebow, Cassel. Please don’t let it be Tebow.

  53. Tom T.

    @Chris: Those are really good points, but what if Martin really is a clone of Ray Rice? If that is the case, getting him in round 2 would be a complete gift. Imagine how dominant our run game would be if we had Lynch and Ray Rice sharing carries. That’s how it could be with Lynch and Martin.

  54. MattK

    @Chris- Not trying to pile on here, but I wouldn’t look at those 1-2nd rd running backs as only a safety net if Lynch is hurt, but as play makers. They’re going to touch the ball 10-15 times a game, potentially. In my eyes, it’s the same as a team like Green Bay investing in a WR who catches 5-8 balls a game, except as a running team like us, we’re investing in the part of the offense which actually works well for us.

    And for the record, I would only consider drafting 3 running backs in the first two rounds: Richardson, Miller, Martin. Each guy is a play maker who deserves those grades, but if I had to chose out of those 3 considering where they are likely to go, I would love to see Miller fall to our 2nd rd pick.

  55. Charlie

    @Chris, I do mean to pile on, because in fairness, some of your statements are completely outlandish. I understand the importance of the offensive line, but not just any back could have had the season lynch had, basically put together in the second half of the season, behind that line. How many times did lynch avoid tackles, make incredible plays this year? it wasn’t a simple matter of wide open holes lynch was hitting. What about that run against philly, where he simply kept his legs churning and broke free for a touchdown, or against the ravens, when he juked jarret johnson as well as ray lewis for the first down on 3rd and 5? Or his run against the rams when he juked, trucked, spinned, his way out of nearly every tackle, finally being brought down by Chris Long. As fun as it is to say runningbacks are so easy to find late, i think this is extremely cliche. We just hang on to the names like Arian foster and Legarrete Blount, and don’t realize that if these guys were so easy to find late, then how come not every team is always in supply of a great runningback, as well as backup. It just isn’t that simple. You look at the dominant backs in the league right now, and trends say that the majority of them were taken in the top 3 rounds.

  56. Matt J

    Thanks for addressing the free-agency side of things. I can see how you thought I was pulling for Seattle to take Tannehill at 12, but I really wanted to see how things shifted for the Seahawks at 12 with him still in the mix (and another player out), and to see how far he falls. Does he join Kirk Cousins & Brock Osweiler in the mid second? Who else would pull the trigger on him in the first (Miami)?

  57. woofu

    Tolbert would be a nice addition for backing up Lynch.

    There are Richardsons every year.

    Whatever the Alabama coach says about any player is muted by the look on his face when we took Carpenter.

    I came away from the combine higher on several players than Upshaw including Hightower. I’m not so sure you can rule out Kuechly either. If they can solidify the DL another way, I could see LB go 1-2, much like OL last year.

  58. woofu

    Here is a non-upshaw post combine view more in line with where I see it.


  59. Random Guy

    I’d be thrilled to have both Williams and a rusher from the draft. You can never have too many pass rushers. Look at the Giants: Tuck, Umenyiora, Pierre-Paul, Kiwanuka, Canty, Tollefson, even our old friend Rocky Bernard can get after the QB. You can put together all kinds of situational packages with personnel like that. If the Seahawks had that, with that secondary the team would wreak havoc on passing attacks and create in incredible number of big plays. And as we saw from the Giants, that can help create a lot of improbable wins.

  60. Vin

    Thanks Rob for the weekly updates/mocks. Thanks Kip for the insight. My $.02, Im still on board with Upshaw @ 12. Some posters don’t like or question the pick, understandably….too short…to slow, etc. I see him as a 3 down, rush the QB/contain the RB. Assuming the hawks draft, I think they’ll use him the same way the Tide did–they’ll move him around, sometimes he’ll be upright, other times he’ll rush from the 3pt stance. Ive read speculation of the Hawks trading out of 12 if Richardson is on the board, gaining a 2nd or 3rd rnd pick. As much as I like Upshaw, and Richardson for that matter, I wouldnt be opposed to a draft where we move back, take LB/DE @1, RB/LB/QB @2, 2A, 3, 3A, etc (depending on what we get in a trade). Hypothetically, we get some combination of Hightower, Martin, OSweiler, Curry, Kendricks, etc. Id be all for that.

    As far as the possible trade….Rob probably mentioned this before, but Im thinking its Carson Palmer. I dont think Peyton will play for the Raiders, but the Dolphins. I think Flynn then signs with the Raiders, leaving Palmer up for grabs.

  61. Meat

    @woofu- Tolbert would be a GREAT addition. Great runner, rather good hands, strong/powerful.

    A playmaker will be picked, as well as a pass rusher and a QB in this draft. John mentioned in the interview that he would like to pick up a QB in every draft every year. He mentioned perhaps even two QB picked up via draft this year. I also got the impression that they will be picked after the third round. So that leaves a DE/LB and a playmaker for rounds 1 and 2. I do not see a DB or a OL picked in round 1 or 2 so the Upshaw pick makes sense. A trade w/ the Bengals might be nice. Stay in the first, and a few slots back and perhaps their 2nd rounder giving two 2nds. Bengals need a RB and a trade for Richardson makes some sense for them.

  62. Phil

    Maybe somebody can help me re: all this speculation on where Manning might go and how that might affect who the “mystery” QB is who would then come to Seattle in a “domino” effect move.

    My problem is timing. No one knows if Manning is going to recover his arm strength — at least that’s what I’m hearing. And, it might be a couple of months until someone does know. So what team is going to rush to make a decision on Manning now, especially if that decision involves getting rid of their current starter? That is, isn’t the decision on Manning likely to occur too late to have any bearing on the Seahawks’ decisions about whether they should pursue a QB in the draft or free agency?

    I suppose that a team like Houston (with Schaub and Yates) might figure they could gamble on signing Manning before they know how healthy he might be, but this ignores the expense involved. He’s not going to sign anywhere for peanuts.

  63. Colin

    @Hector, just because JS said Tebow has the ability to “tilt the field” does not mean he would want him on this football team. I think you exaggerate some of your points a bit.

  64. Doug

    “wild speculation”… = not boring

    Rob, even if you love the Upshaw pick, as you obviously do, another two months of the same thing is just a cop-out. We all get it that you have a total man-crush on the guy, but frankly, it’s really getting stale. There are lots of other ways this draft can fall, but if you and Kip are never going to consider something else, we will get bored to tears. I’m not sure there are any other stones we can turn over for something new on Upshaw… C’mon man!

    Realistically, we could draft someone like:
    Upshaw – duh

    And so on…
    Sure, we get that you doubt that they take anyone besides Upshaw, but try to imagine that he is off the board when our pick comes, or more realistically, that he falls down to a late 1st, or even “gasp”, a second round.
    Why keep painting yourself into a corner? We KNOW that you think he is the guy, but how about something else?

    C’Mon MAN !!!


  65. Ian

    I say you give us Upshaw at the #12 in the rest of your mocks this year, in hopes it will somehow sway the universe into us actually getting this monster.

    I love how a bunch of guys running around in tights doing drills can so drastically change people’s minds on a player who has stacks of great game tape. Put down your stop watches and head over to youtube and watch some draftbreakdown videos of Upshaw. He is the real deal.

  66. Jarhead

    Before I even read any comments I want to say two things. Rob, I also see the draft shaping up this way. EXCEPT: At this point I do not see the Cheifs taking Richardson at that pick. I did a week ago but not anymore. Honestly, with Jamaal Charles, Thomas Jones under contract and Dexter McCluster as a third down back/return specialistm, I can not forsee the Cheifs taking such a luxury pick. They need another end to opposite Tamba Hali and they critically need a tackle. If they take Richardson, it would make as much sense as Minnesota taking Richardson, you know? I actually forsee us having Richardson for the taking at 12. My two questions Rob: 1) Do you really see Ingram or Coples having any kind of value for this team, the kind of impact we’re looking for? Where will they play? When? I see them as having no value, but what is your opinion? 2) You really think Mycheal Kendricks will be off the board that early? I was hoping to nab him in round 3, I didn’t suppose he had garnered that much interest as of yet. And Martin in the 2nd doesn’t fit for me anymore, as there are equally gifted RBs available in later rounds when we could continue to address defense in the 2nd. At this point I would see more value in drafting Kendricks in the 2nd and waiting until the 3rd for a RB. IF we don’t get T Rich, of course

  67. AlaskaHawk

    Doug – Great Post and exactly what I was thinking. With Upshaws wimp out at the combiine it is time to move on and explore other options. I just saw a post with freakin Cox rated in the top 10. Another has Perry as a top 10. Wow!

    Since this is an offensive pass happy leaque I think it is possible that we see more value with Trent Richardson or Floyd, or Stephen Hill in the first, and then pick a pass rusher in the second. There is nothing wrong with that as it still addressed our needs – which are many!

  68. woofu

    Ian, try to think of the combine as a punctuation contest. Write your sentence on a player/tape study then add the last punctuation mark accordingly, like,,,,

    , !!!!, ????, or …..

    Upshaw ended his day with a ?. He will be rereviewed just like Poe or Hill or Kendricks, etc..

  69. MattK

    @Ian – Most of the hype built up on Upshaw with Seahawk fans was the idea that he could fill two holes on our defense by playing WLB and DE on passing downs. It was laughable to think that he could, but people bought into it because he rarely dropped into coverage at Bama, so ‘hey, maybe he can’.

    At the combine, his coverage ability was exposed and as a 4-3 OLB, he’s not a good fit. If can’t play two positions as many thought he could, that’s going to change the opinions of some people.

    Not saying he can’t play the 4-3 DE well enough, but he’s not quite the prospect that he was hyped up to be.

  70. woofu

    The mocks will continue to be all over the place for now and again after FA unfolds. Heres another example of “opinion”.


  71. Ian

    Woofu – The combine in for players who did not do enough on tape to try and make a showing, not the opposite. Same reason Cam Newton throwing badly last year did nothing to his stock. Upshaw is a high quality football player with great ability, huge amounts of football knowledge and a will to win. He will be an above average defensive player, if not a great one in the NFL.

    Mattk – Most of the hype with hawks fans came after we were able to watch Upshaw in the Title game and saw what he could do against even the best college talent. Also, we dont run anything near a classic 4-3, Upshaw would not have to drop back often and when he did it would be hook zones or flat zones. If james harrison can do that from time to time I see no reason Upshaw couldnt.

  72. Misfit74

    woofu – Upshaw falling seems to be a prevailing theme. Not sure if that would help us get him (as Rob pointed out) or he’ll simply continue to slide down the ‘perception-board’.

    Interesting to see Mercilus rising and he is a defender that intrigues me a bit.

    I think that list of QBs is far too long and few if any of those guys will be available. I think Schaub to Manning is nearly a lateral move and don’t see it by the Texans. Cassel I could see but he’s expensive for more of a #2 QB, though he has played well, at times. Is he mobile enough for our offense? I think one thing we have to ask about any QB coming here is if they are mobile enough.

    Blackmon to Seattle in the Rotoworld mock. And David Baldwin also on board with WR. Glad to see I’m not the only one not only not ruling it out – but embracing the idea.

    I think Richardson to Tampa at #5 is as close of a lock as I can see, barring CLE not landing RGIII via trade-up. KC needs a complimentary runner to Charles, who they just recently opened the bank-vault for.

    Romo to Seattle is an interesting though. Cutler and Tebow = no way and no thanks.

    I just think barring a Richardson slide to 12 that WR – one of Floyd or less likely: Blackmon may be the best combination of value and talent at the pick rather than reaching on a defender. I’m more sold on Richardson (and no – Richardson’s don’t come around every year!) and the top-2 Wideouts than I am the defenders, at least to this point. Great discussion.

  73. Misfit74

    The reasoning is as if they read it from my posts on this site the past few days, lol, re: the Rotoworld mock. The logic isn’t just my own, clearly. 😉

    “12. Seahawks — Oklahoma State wide receiver Justin Blackmon

    The Seahawks may not envision receiver as a weak spot entering late April, but they’ll face an interesting dilemma should Blackmon, Kendall Wright, and Michael Floyd all be available at No. 12. Blackmon’s measurables are certainly not top-ten caliber, and his possession-style game tape is similar to Julio Jones’ coming out of Alabama with two fewer inches, 13 fewer pounds, and a (likely) inferior forty time. There’s still a good chance he’d be Seattle’s highest rated player. Sidney Rice is coming off double shoulder surgeries, Golden Tate has mostly underwhelmed, and Mike Williams is an offseason release candidate after fracturing his left ankle and fibula last December.

  74. andy

    I could certainly see Manning in Dallas. It is a nice cushy dome stadium and they do have good WRs, TE and RB. Seems like a good fit. Would not mind Romo being a Seahawk one bit……

  75. Misfit74

    MattK – no love for David Wilson (RB, VT)?

  76. Tarry

    I agree that this is very possible option that you’ve drawn up here. I am wondering if it could be likely as it doesn’t seem like Hawthorne will be back that we’d take Kuechly with 12 and Vinny Curry (DE on the board here in 2nd)? Just throwing it out there. Again, nothing wrong with these choices and still is best option pre-FA

  77. Kelly

    Doug, Rob doesn’t do wild speculation.He is not here just for your entertainment. He is here to give us the best choice based on his insider information. If you want wild speculation, go to Mel Kiper’s site!

  78. Hector

    @Colin Which points would you consider exaggerations? I’m not really looking to defend the reasoning for the sake of arguing, just curious if you have some information that makes any of my possible arguments null. I looked at all 31 teams’ situations, and for those players I’ve listed, I tried to come up with some sort of reasoning that wasn’t just grasping at straws (Freeman excluded)

    As for Tebow, while I’m not very supportive of a move for him (depending on what the Seahawks gave up), he certainly ticked a lot of boxes. Like Tarvaris, he certainly has a locker room presence to be respected; he’s a very mobile quarterback who would not be asked to put the team on his shoulders with a complex passing game; he’s relatively affordable on his current contract compared to many of the other starting QB’s; depending on the outcome of the QB competition between Jackson and Tebow, the backups’s contract would not be crippling the franchise by any means. A 3rd round pick or lower (damn QB premium) for the guy doesnt scream “panic move,” but creates healthy competition at the position. The odds are Tebow’s more ready to contribute Week 1 this season than potential 2nd rounders Tannehill, Cousin, Osweiler, or later round prospects.

  79. Belgaron

    Schneider has said all along he will build through the draft both before during and after last years successful crop of free agent signings. He has specifically said about this years free agency class that they won’t be signing as many as last year but they will look to do a few things. They will have interest in Mario Williams but may drop out depending on price and his willingness to come to Seattle. If he visits, it will play into their organizational strengths as they have a generous owner who spends money on the little niceties that some others avoid (Cincinnati). They have a beautiful world class training facility, a world class stadium, and a 12th man fan-base that is the envy of the league because they are smart enough to know when to get loud and they know how to get really loud. They have a coaching staff that players enjoy and an organization that has made continuous incremental roster improvement year to year. And last, the city isn’t as bad as advertised (rain, etc). Players that are actually open to relocate often end up staying in Seattle even after their tenure with the team because they come to love the city.

    Seattle will not be screwed if they can’t sign Lynch to a long term deal (which personally I expect to happen soon) because they could franchise him this year and they could franchise him again next year. Only in the third year of franchising does the number become cost prohibitive. Lynch will want no part of living year to year in such a risky position, he will sign a long term deal for as much as he can negotiate. They will find a backup for him this off-season and utilize Washington occasionally as well whether they draft one early in the draft or not.

    Lastly, to write Floyd off as a non-target is to have not paid attention the past few years. Privately, they hope for Durham will emerge as a real factor this year but if they sign a few free agents on defense and have the freedom to choose BPA, Floyd will definitely be in the running along with Richardson.

  80. Mike

    I love the intrigue–thanks for passing along info, even if it is rumor and innuendo.

    Here’s my guess as to who the mystery trade candidate is…first, we need to think like Peyton. Where would you want to go if you were him? Clearly, a team that could win a Super Bowl is the number one objective. It would also be nice if they had receivers, were not on the west coast, had a strong defense, and played indoors or in nice weather. Winning another Super Bowl would be far and away the objective, though.

    I would eliminate the Chiefs, based on how close they are to winning Super Bowl. I would also eliminate the Jets, in that the team is a bit of a hot mess right now, among other factors. To me, that leaves 4 teams:

    1. Baltimore Ravens: I get why Peyton would want to go there, but why would Baltimore want to give up on Joe Flacco for a year or two of uncertain health in Manning? It’d be a huge gamble. Plus, the Ravens seem intent on locking up Flacco long-term. If talks unravel, who knows what could happen.

    2. San Francisco 49ers: Yes, Jim Harbaugh made quite a show about how much he believes in Alex Smith, and it seems like he really does, but would you put this move past him? Do the 49ers really think Alex Smith is the guy to take them to the promised land long-term? They could also afford to take the risk because they have a prospect in Kaepernick waiting in the wings…who better to learn from than Peyton? Coincidentally, Alex Smith seems to be the type of QB we would be interested in. This would leave Smith a free agent, though, and would not necessitate a trade.

    3. Houston Texans: They’re good, but they haven’t gotten over the hump. Mto aybe they think Peyton could get them there…Oh yeah, plus he’d get to throw to Andre Johnson and play the Colts twice a year. They also have a young QB in Yates that they seem to like. My guess is they’d part with Schaub over Yates if they signed Peyton.

    4. Dallas Cowboys: I wouldn’t get this move at all from the point of view of the Cowboys, which is why it could happen. With Jerry Jones, who knows?

  81. DT

    I think the hawks will trade down from the 12th pick. That seems to fit with JS’s style/time in green bay.
    Maybe there is a team that wants one of the 3 receivers if they are left on the board. Maybe there is a team that falls in love with Tannehill (hello, Denver) or some other QB that the hawks can leverage into trading up for – their first and their third (maybe 2nd)

  82. ElCan

    If in fact they sign mario williams, which i see as more than a 50% chance, i believe this is the perfect year to possibly trade down and take a guy like andre brance/nick perry/vinny curry/doug martin. Unless they believe that upshaw is THE guy (and that would be awesome) then im not sure they would even pursue mario williams. However I would argue that the most likely situation, is that they will sign mario williams, and then either trade back for a guy like andre brance or stay where they are and take upshaw as a move to throw him under mario williams wing for a few years. Theres a great possibility that upshaw (or branch/perry/mercilus) is going to take 2-3 years to fully understand what it takes to rush the QB in the NFL. With a guy like mario williams here to show him the way, i think that is a very logical route to take.

  83. MattK

    Ian- We still run a 4-3 defense. While our D-line responsibilities aren’t traditional to a 4-3, our linebackers are. Pete Carroll’s system relies on quicker linebackers that can can provide middle coverage in either a match or spot-drop zone and, yes, the WLB does it a lot.

    I wouldn’t use use Harrison as an example at all of someone who can handle the 4-3 WLB role. He plays in a 3-4. His responsibilities are completely different then, for example, what Hill had to do last year. People assume that Upshaw could just play closer to the line of scrimmage and reduce his zone coverage responsibility, but Carroll’s system doesn’t do that. He likes to play his WLB to play 5-7 yrds deep and instead play his SAM closer to the line over the tight end.

    A 275 lb WLB does not fit what Carroll wants at the position or he wouldn’t have brought Hill to play the position last year and he wouldn’t have drafted/signed two undersized but fast linebackers in Malcolm Smith and Mike Morgan. It’s obvious of what he wants at the position especially when he specifically says he wants more speed at the LB position.

  84. MattK

    Misfit74 – I like Wilson, but between Wilson and Miller, I like Miller’s burst a bit more and think he runs better between the tackles.

    This is a deep draft class fr the RB position, so I expect whoever they draft we’ll be getting a good player.

  85. Misfit74

    Interesting thoughts about the schematic fit and the type of players we utilize at LB. Speed is certainly a much-desired element.

    I think Upshaw could play Leo and perhaps some other minor situational roles (remember we did, at times, kick Curry inside to help pass-rush – not saying it worked). I don’t believe Upshaw can play either outside LB spot every-down.

    A guy like Alan Branch at 6’4 260 could also play that role – perhaps the team could land him in round 2 or trade back into the end of the first for a guy like him or to tap a guy who slides like Mercilus or Ingram. Still, I tend to think the top-4 pass-rushers (34-types) will be gone earlier than not. The draft would have to fall a certain way. But, there are explosive speed-rushers that should make it to rounds 2 and 3, and a few guys have already been mentioned. I don’t think Upshaw can play anything but Clemons’ role and I’m not sure he has the explosive speed to do it. If he does I’m all for it. But, I think round 2 is fine for that if the BPA is in fact a WR like Floyd or Blackmon (I know: broken record, lol).

    One think that’s hard to peg is if the team is looking for a Leo or the Red Bryant role early in this draft (or FA – Mario). Some guys fit the Leo but only a few of them I’m excited about. Maybe we actually go that route w/ Mario and fill the Red role in round 2 with one of the many 5-tech types that should be available rounds 2 and 3?

    We’d still be down a traditional LB or two, so that has to be accounted for. Hello middle rounds! Irvin, Z.Brown (and a slew of others) might be just the ticket to fill Hill’s old role(s) be it WIL or SLB.

  86. Misfit74

    MattK – I’m actually just the opposite. I like Wilson over Miller in our scheme and think Wilson is the better interior runner and has more skills than Miller’s primary asset of speed – though he has that too. I think Martin, Richardson or even Polk probably fit our scheme the best. But, a COP runner could also be the answer if we retain Lynch. Guys like Cyrus Gray or James could be a nice lightening to Lynch’s thunder that could be had in the middle rounds. Personally, I’d rather have a top WR (Floyd, Blackmon) than Wilson or Miller if we’re talking round 1. Martin might not make it to our 2nd-rounder and that might be too much of an investment depending on what happens with Lynch. The later round backs are important considerations that very well could factor in.

  87. Misfit74

    I wonder if a guy like Jared Crick could play the Red DE role and be found in the round 2-3 range? He is 6’4 286.

  88. Rob

    Matt J – I think Washington would look at their offensive line and receiver if not quarterback. But then I fully expect Mike Shanahan to invest in a QB with that #6 pick one way or another. If Tannehill is available at #12 I would be very surprised if Seattle drafted him. The Seahawks wouldn’t have drafted Jake Locker in round one last year, I suspect that’ll be the case for Tannehill who has some similarities.

    JoeV – They’d use Upshaw as a pass rusher. In 4-3 looks he’d play end, in 3-4 looks he’d play OLB. They’d move him all over the place with the idea of creating pressure.

    PatrickH – Upshaw won’t drop out of round one. No way. If he makes it past #12 it would be an upset.

    Attyla – Williams is a pipe dream IMO. The drfat will be used for the pass rushers.

    dave crockett – the only recent FA info I have is contained in this post regarding the QB’s. Seattle is making keeping it’s own talent the priority. Lynch and Bryant for sure. Nothing about Upshaw’s combine performance put me off because I know the guy can play football. I didn’t need to see him run around cones to qualify that.

    david – I think it’s doubtful in a rookie season. Cousins would have the best chance but it’d still not be ideal. They’re more likely to search out a veteran upgrade. I’m not keen on the FA group of QB’s but I think there are one or two veterans out there who would appeal for a modest trade.

    Griffin B – They would be flexible, using more 3-4 looks with three bigs in the middle and two outside rushers. Lot’s of hybrid looks. You can find ways to get Bryant and Upshaw on the field. Nothing about this defense will be rigid.

    Misfit74 – Seattle will not draft an offensive lineman in round one. You can take that to the bank. Ditto for a receiver, even if Blackmon falls.

    Chris – The running game is the heart and soul of the offense and will continue to be. The reason they will draft a RB early (and they will) is because they’ve seen life without Lynch. They know they need depth at RB, better depth. They’re also concerned Lynch will wear down due to his physical style and want an insurance player – especially if Marshawn is tagged.

    Ryan – Happy to.

    Alaska – That is true and thus the vast majority of my mocks look at possibilities. However there comes a time to get serious. I won’t purposely deviate from what I either know or have a firm belief in. It won’t be Upshaw every week.

    thebroski – Glenn has always looked good at Georgia, but I was never aware of his athletic quality. He proved that at the combine and now performance matches athleticism. Martin hasn’t got the same ceiling.

    Brian – I’ll be very surprised if Seattle trades out of #12. As with Earl Thomas at #14 in 2010, I think there’ll be a guy they like enough to stay put this year.

  89. Belgaron

    Some teams have removed Upshaw from their top 32


  90. Rob

    And some teams still have him under a very high first round grade, including the one team that matters.

  91. Mel

    Although indications have said otherwise given Pete’s “Win Forever” mantra, do you think the Hawks will consider trading this years 1st for another team’s 1st in 2013? Who knows, in a dream scenario we would get another “Josh McDaniels Special” and trade our 2nd for another 1st next year. That would give us three 1st’s to pursue Barkley or whomever we deem worthy of being the QBOTF. I know it’s a long shot that Schneider and Carroll would punt this year, but the team is too good to get the top QB legitimately (ie: sucking to high heaven). What do you think?

  92. Belgaron

    Have you confirmed that after the combine? I understand why Barron dropped because of the double hernia surgery but why did Upshaw drop? Did anything new on him come out of the combine?

  93. FWBrodie

    Belgaron – That list is not representative of any “teams.” Any list that has Poe as the #3 prospect in the country has zero credibility whatsoever, because it instantly tells me they haven’t bothered to watch the players play football. Poe isn’t very good at playing defensive tackle and the idea of him being drafted third overall is an example of extreme post-combine hyperbolic craziness. That goes for you too woofoo, who posted the same list above. That would be equivalent to listing Stephen Hill in the top 5 because he’s 6’4″ and ran a 4.3. Poe and Hill very well may develop their games and begin to cash in on their natural athleticism someday, but in the post Al Davis era of the NFL, no one’s dumb enough to spend so much draft capital on a player who is all track no football.

  94. Belgaron

    The list at DT prior to the combine had Poe around slot 3-4 of the six projected to go in the 1st to early 2nd round so saying he may have passed Brockers (clearly didn’t train for the combine) who had been the consesus number 1 is not that big of a jump actually.

    Most pundits agree there is a big dropoff in talent after the top 3 picks and most have been putting Richardson there despite others (Clayton) saying that RB value has dropped in the NFL and even great RB prospects will not be drafted that high.

    So having a run on the deep DT talent starting in the latter half of the top 10 picks with Poe would not require too much imagination to see happening. There are many teams who prefer to draft big early (Holmgren has said that, for example).

  95. Rob

    Mel – Seattle won the lottery with that Denver trade. I’m not sure they’ll ever win it again.

    Belgaron – Any team that removed Upshaw from their list post-combine likely wasn’t taking him anyway. I know for a fact there are teams out there that love what Upshaw brings and nothing has changed in that aspect.

  96. woofu

    HaHa Brodie,

    Poe at #9 up top.

    Ian, never said it did. What I said, after watching the entire combine pundit parade ad naseum every day on tv, was, (I’ll say it different here),,,,it makes them go back and re-evaluate what they saw before. If it looks like an aberation then they stick with their evals.

    For some players dropping we have reasons (2 hernias) and for others it is related to another person doing better than another side-by-side. It was not hard to compare Cox to Upshaw, etc.. Some will see it the way they want it.

    It’s early and I find it best to remain open for now but I do have preferences, just not rock solid yet.

  97. AlaskaHawk

    I am of the opinion that if Upshaw won’t work out at the combine he has to prove himself at pro day. Yes I love his old tape but that was yesterday. What will he do today and tomorrow? I don’t know because he didn’t work out.

    I like Cox too. And he also has good tape, shows the same amount of effort as Upshaw, and he worked out at the combine.

    I just don’t think Upshaw did himself any favors by refusing to lift weights, etc.

  98. Mel

    Rob – I know it’s most definetely a pipedream to have another Denver scenario play out, but what about trading out of the first round altogether this year in order to have 2 firsts next year to compete legitimately for Barkley (a la Cleveland). I realize it takes 2 to trade, but do you think that would be something the front office is even considering?

  99. Belgaron

    The knocks on Upshaw out of the combine:

    Patrick Crawley @pecrawleynfl
    “I’ve seen bulldozers that change direction better than Courtney Upshaw”

    Charley Casserly http://dcfanaticsblog.wordpress.com/2012/02/28/did-courtney-upshaw-hurt-his-stock-on-monday/ at 2:50 “monotone athlete…(lacks) bursts of explosion in the pass rush drills…”

    Todd McShay from Mike Herndon @MikeHerndon_PR
    “He’s not an elite athlete, doesn’t have that same explosiveness” as Melvin Ingram.

    Upshaw scored a 9 on the Wonderlick test. For comparison sake, former Seahawks Julian Peterson scored a 5 and John Carlson scored a 40.http://www.ibleedcrimsonred.com/2012/02/scouts-split-on-alabama-players-draft.html

  100. Smeghead

    Considering Julian Peterson was a pretty good player I think your argument is moot against Upshaw…

  101. david

    Upshaw lifted weights didnt he? 22 reps right? thats pretty good aint it?

  102. Trudy Beekman

    It seems like Fletcher Cox is the perfect fit for what we’re looking for at RDE, and offers more versatility for our D with the ability to move inside on passing downs. Having Red play RDE last year seems to indicate that Pete likes someone that can stop the run first on the outside, and he has said as much in his pressers. Cox would also be able to do 2 things that Red can’t do: move laterally to stop runs to the edge (see Dallas or Washington games) and get after the quarterback.

    I think Upshaw is a great football player, and I like him significantly more than any of the other 270lb DE prospects, but I don’t think we get the flexibility w/ him to play anywhere on the line that we do w/ Cox.

  103. Belgaron

    Julian Peterson was traded to the Lions by the Seahawks because he had a habit of not being assignment correct, so if you know your Seahawks history that’s not a great comparison.

    A bad test may not hurt a prospect but it definitely doesn’t help.

    Some other scores for comparison
    Eli Manning 39
    Matthew Stafford 38
    Peyton Manning 28
    Mark Sanchez 28
    Clay Matthews 27
    Aaron Curry 24
    John Moffitt 23
    Tarvaris Jackson 19
    James Carpenter 19
    Allen Barbre 11

  104. Chris

    “The reason they will draft a RB early (and they will) is because they’ve seen life without Lynch.”

    No, they actually haven’t seen life without Lynch. We have no idea whatsoever how Leon or Forsett or any other back for that matter would perform starting behind the offensive line from the 2nd half of the season. All they have actually seen is one game without Lynch during the year and a half time span in which Lynch’s numbers HIMSELF were among the worst starting back #s in the league (not to mention a Cleveland defense unthreatened by Whitehurst).

    I have seen nothing here that would convince me spending a 1st or 2nd rounder on a player that might only see the field on 30% or 40% of the plays is worth it. The “Lynch’s eventual replacement argument” doesn’t work, as a team shouldn’t be spending a 1st or 2nd on a guy that is not going to be a starter for 2 or perhaps 3 years (or more), and the “Few touches a game like wide receivers” argument doesn’t work either since a quality starting receiving affects the defense nearly every play of the game, whether they are receiving the ball or not. The very existence of a Fitzgerald or S.Rice for that matter makes things easier on the other offensive players, whether they are being targeted or not. A quality running back who will not even be on the field most plays, however, does not.

    I think Lynch needs a backup, but not at the cost of throwing away the highest picks when we so clearly need pass rushers, quarterbacks of the future, linebackers, maybe even a legitimate #2 WR, etc.

  105. Darnell

    I’d take another JP. He was able to find success in the 3-4 and then the 4-3. With us he played LBer on running downs and came off the edge on passing downs.

    He had a good football IQ, regardless of what the wonderlic said about his test taking abilities.

  106. Nick

    Hey Rob,

    I really trust your source because he has given us some good credible info in the past. But I just had 2 questions for you if you are able to answer them.

    1. Is it possible that he doesn’t tell you everything he knows? Could there be some info that comes down from the top that is simply too valuable to even expose on websites? For all we know some teams have guys that go through websites such as this to gain an angle on certain teams.

    2. Is he a big time player in the Seahawks organization, or he somewhere near the bottom of people with inside info? Is it possible that even he himself is not told everything that comes down from the top?

    I only ask because while I do trust the info that has been given, if certain circumstances change that he doesn’t get the info to you fast enough (such as a late breaking development that Mario Williams could be had at a good price) could they indeed happen? I’m sure things develop sometimes that not everyone knows about except PC or JS.

  107. Michael (CLT)

    Why would Seattle bypass Cousins for a RB that can be equaled in numerous other players. Turbin seems a good fit in round 3.

    Such a draft would make me sad.

    No Sanchez, Cassel, Palmer, Tebow, or Gabbert trade would change that.

  108. Belgaron

    So, here’s a case where a Wonderlic was misleading about future football success, Patrick Willis scored a 12.

  109. Rob

    AlaskaHawk – I think we need some context here on the decision not to work out. Upshaw is competing (trust me) with Ingram and Coples. The three of them will go in the top-16, it’s just in which order. Ingram lost about 15lbs before the combine in order to max-out his performance, he’ll probably put that weight back on now. Coples is a physical freak and nobody has ever questioned his athletic potential. Upshaw is not a ridiculous athlete – he’s a football player who will always look better hitting people on a field than running around cones or running in a straight line. The moment he tries to compete athletically with Coples/Ingram is when his stock falls – and whatever anyone thinks about the combine these guys are not doing anything to jeopardise their stock. He doesn’t need to flash in work outs because he’s flashed consistently on tape, which is what teams are basing their grade on. I’ve read an 80-20 and a 90-10 split of tape-combine among the majority of front offices. Unfortunately the impression we as fans have of the combine is that it can seriously have an impact on nearly every player. In reality, it’ll just make teams go back and look at more tape of guys like Stephen Hill and Kendall Wright.

    Mel – That would be highly unlikely, Mel. Teams don’t trade high first round picks for future R1’s because there’s every chance that R1 pick next year will be lower than #12. While it’s nice to think you have ‘ammunition’ to make a deal in a year’s time, the reality is you’re more likely to get bad value out of a deal like that. If the Seahawks want to be aggressive next year, we’re more likely to see them trade future R1’s than stock pile picks. I’m very confident they’ll spend the #12 pick this year without any movement.

    Belgaron – Seriously? Are we now calling out an ageing Julian Peterson as a bad football player because he was traded to make room for Aaron Curry? He made multiple pro-bowls, was a tremendous pass rusher at LB. If Upshaw has anything like the same career it’ll be a major success drafting him at #12. It feels like people are desperate to find ways to knock Upshaw – yet I’m reading very little diagnosis of his actual play. I couldn’t care less what his wonderlic score is – he’s not going to be playing behind center. Wonderlic scores are not a precursor to success.

    Trudy Beekman – I’d disagree a bit with Fletcher Cox being the ideal RDE. For starters, they love the size Bryant brings at the position and he has 30lbs on Cox. They also love the intensity and run stopping ability of Bryant, and I would argue that Cox is more of a runaway train type player – someone with the quicks to get into the backfield but is also frequently off balance and a bit predictable. This team has two priorities in free agency – one is keeping Marshawn Lynch (expect him to be tagged on Monday) and re-signing Red Bryant. The fact he’ll sign a deal similar to Brandon Mebane’s speaks volumes.

    Chris – Cleveland this past season – no Lynch, disastrous consequences. They spelled Marshawn a lot in the final game at Arizona – no run game. I’m only telling you what I’ve heard and this is the situation – Seattle wants two premier backs. And it’s an assumption to expect Lynch to be around for 2-3 more years – a physical back who could wear down quicker. If he’s franchised, you may be looking at one more year of Lynch if the draft goes well. Plus there’s a lot of quality available in round two at RB, there’s no need to fight such good value with guys like Miller, Wilson, Martin and Polk potentially available.

    Nick – When there’s something he can’t tell me, he’ll say so. He’s not given me much info on this potential trade but he’s explained why. I can’t go into who he is or what he does. If anything changes he’ll pass it on – I also don’t write about or reveal everything he tells me in order to protect certain information.

    Michael (CLT) – What if they don’t value Cousins as a round two level player? This is a guy who a few weeks ago was considered a R4 or even R5 level prospect. He’s had a good off-season and his stock is higher, but if the Seahawks don’t think he’s worth a high pick they won’t just reach. That’s the definition of a panic – the thing this team won’t do. The reason there are so many round two failures at QB are because team’s make so many reaches in that area. Seattle will have to judge whether Cousins is worth a R2 grade before they potentially draft him. We’ll see if that happens.

  110. Jr

    I think Upshaw would be a good fit in our system. He would play SAM on 1st and 2nd downs and bump Red inside and play on the end on 3rd down.
    As for the rumors, there is one team that comes to mind that is a QB away from the Super Bowl and that Peyton would be a good fit for. The Eagles showed they are willing to go out and spend big last year only to have their season fall apart from injured or bad QB play. Imagine if Andy Reid actually had a QB who fits the system he wants to run.
    As for Romo, we already have him in Tjax. A QB who puts up good numbers until you put him in a pressure situation, then they fall apart. Only were Tjax holds onto the ball and takes a sack, Romo will just throw it up for grabs or fumble it away.

  111. woofu

    I knew it!!!

    Wonderlick IS a Super Bowl predictor.

    Eli 2 (38)
    Peyton 1 (24)


  112. Phil

    For those of you who might wonder how Mario Williams measured at his combine:

    33 7/8 arm length
    40 1/2 ” vertical
    35 reps @ 225#
    4.66 40

    Impressive!!! Plus a whole lotta’ good tape!!

  113. Belgaron


    I still haven’t made up my mind on Upshaw, not that he’s not a great college player and pro prospect but whether or not he will be the best choice for the Seahawks. I found it curious that multiple sources were reporting he had hurt his stock at the combine so I looked for more information and posted some here. Obviously if the ‘Hawks draft him, their evaluations did not agree with those opinions or at least felt his upside was worth the risk. By contrast, last year James Carpenter’s stock was very much on the rise heading into the draft.

    I posted JP and Carlson’s Wonderlic scores because they are interesting examples of the high and low Seahawks that I could recall.

    Your reference to the JP trade is not historically correct. He was traded March 14, 2009 and the draft wasn’t until April 25. At that time, it was not a foregone conclusion that Aaron Curry would make it to the ‘Hawks at all. In fact there was speculation that Detroit might consider him at #1 (they had him in for a visit) and most pundits/mocks had the Chiefs taking him at #3. The Seahawks and most of the fans were ecstatic when the Chiefs selected Tyson Jackson, letting the “safest pick in the draft” fall to them. Publicly, it was reported that JP was traded because he would not accept a pay cut but Hugh Millen stated at the time that in his evaluations, many times JP was out of position and not with the program despite his reputation and previous awards. That was also where I heard about the low Wonderlic score.

    Ultimately, Upshaw may make a great pick for the ‘Hawks and without the drop in stock he might not have made it to pick #12 but if his stock has dropped in Schneider’s eyes he may be passed over even if he is there for whomever they have higher rated on their draft board. They definitely don’t ever go in with one guy they plan to pick, it will come down to a short list and they will have their precedence pre-determined depending on what other teams do.

  114. Misfit74

    Fantastic discussion, and I appreciate Rob taking his time to respond in full the way he has throughout.

    “I’m only telling you what I’ve heard and this is the situation – Seattle wants two premier backs. ” = music to my ears.

    I’d be thrilled to have a 1, 1A situation like Carolina has at RB. We could be fortunate to be able to take advantage of a deep class of potentially every-down backs. Lynch or the right rookie in there and we can remain unpredictable in terms of play-calling, which would be a boon for our offense.

    Red Bryant is a beast and I do hope we lock him up. Sounds like we will. Good news.

  115. Misfit74

    “The Houston Chronicle maintains that restricted free agent Arian Foster remains the Texans’ “most likely candidate” for the franchise tag.
    Free agent DE/OLB Mario Williams has never been a candidate for the tag because of the prohibitive $22 million cap hit that would come with it…”

    Here’s (still) hoping for Mario Williams. As much as I love Red: Mario > Red.

  116. Misfit74

    Interesting article about the top pass-rushers in this class, from ‘Mocking The Draft’ here:


  117. woofu

    That Cable wants two premier RB’s is not without a history of doing so in Oak.. Bush will be available soon so I would do it in FA. Tolbert would be the guy I would target. Polk in the 3rd would work if he fell there but I would not drop big draft capital this year on RB.

  118. AlaskaHawk

    Rob – Thanks for responding. I truly appreciate you running this blog.

    It should be an interestng draft.

    Not much else to say – except Nick Perry has moved into the #3 DE spot on some peoples boards. There is a good chance that Trent Richardson will fall to us, and we will have a decision to make. Likewise with Michael FLoyd, I wish we had more intent on picking up another wide receiver or running back in the first round. But if it has to be DE I’m sure we will find someone.

  119. Trudy Beekman


    Thanks for the feedback. I guess I always thought that Upshaw would play RDE on all 3 downs, and was too big to be a SAM that moved to DE on 3rd. I think the combine showed that he could be a liability in coverage at SAM, and I didn’t see much on tape to disprove that. Where do you see him playing in our defense?

    I see the runaway-train knock on Cox, and I would also add that he gets blown out when he gets too upright, especially on double teams. You also see him falling down in the backfield quite frequently. However, the 3 big knocks I have on this defense are that we don’t pressure the QB, we get burned on the edge, and we our LB’s aren’t great in coverage. The first two issues I think can be addressed by putting someone quicker at RDE who can also move laterally. Upshaw definitely has the instincts and the attitude to do that, but I think he would have to continue to add weight to be able to consistently hold up against the run. If you see him as a 2-down SAM, do you think he has the athleticism to drop into coverage?

    Yes, Cox looks like a runaway train at times, but as I’m writing this, I can’t recall a time when it looked like he was supposed to two-gap or set an edge. It always seemed like they just asked him to get into the backfield as quickly as possible, and he did a great job of that. I think Upshaw is the better football player right now, but I believe Cox is more flexible w/in this scheme, and also has a higher ceiling.

  120. Rob

    Hey Trudy,

    I see Upshaw playing in several positions based on the play call. I think each position will be designed to let him attack the QB or ball carrier. He’ll line out wide and rush the passer, dip into the middle and attack from the interior. I think we’ll see him in space in 3-4 looks and starting deeper in certain 4-3 looks. Basically he’ll be used as a consistent match-up problem waiting to happen, keeping an offense permanently needing to see where he is and adjust. A headache for the defense without a strict role. Seattle has two safety’s with such range and one with the size/speed to play up but still drop if needs be, so they can afford to be quite aggressive with an extra rusher. I don’t think we’ll see him dropping into coverage too much but for underneath routes – his remit will be clear… get the QB.

  121. Colin

    @Hector, I think your statement “It’s safe to start freaking out” makes me (and probably others) assume, albeit incorrectly, a few conclusions.

    1.). We know John Schneider wants someone who can “tilt the room”. He has said this.

    2.) John said Tim Tebow tilts the room.

    Based upon your statements, and what we’ve heard from John, I concluded the “freaking out” stems from your belief that John wants Tim Tebow. I could be wrong, but that statement seemed to confuse me. What is there to freak out about, if John DIDN’T want Tim Tebow?

    I’m not trying to criticize you, I just would like some clarification as to what you are saying.

  122. Hector

    @Colin, I wouldn’t know if Schneider does or does not want Tim Tebow as a Seahawks QB. I went into a little more detail in my last comment about how Tebow made some sense (not a panic move, creates competition, ticks quite a few boxes for what PCJS look for in a QB) so by saying “its safe to start freaking out,” I meant as a reaction to the POSSIBILITY of Tebow in Seattle. In hindsight, I should not have exaggerated the hypothetical reaction to a potential Tebow trade without some further explanation, but I was more focused on the lack of brevity to my initial comment.

    I personally would rather the organization not give up any draft capital for Tebow for numerous reasons, the primary one being the lack of talent upgrade (or possible downgrade) from Tarvaris. What did worry me enough about the trade possibility to think “freak out” is the off-the-field factors that come with Tebow. For a team with mantras like “Always Compete” and “Earn Everything,” I’d hate to see the Seahawks in any similar situation to the Broncos with Orton/Quinn/Tebow last season and the handcuffs placed on the coaches and front office’s roster construction plans by the fans.

  123. Nick in Pullman

    Why do you think the Hawks would take Doug Martin with Kirk Cousins and Brock Osweiler still on the board?

  124. Rob

    Hi Nick,

    For starters, it’s much to do with grades. While Cousins has improved his stock recently, let’s not forget a few weeks ago he was firmly in the mid/late round range. Seattle likes Cousins, but it won’t necessarily be in R2 if they only have a R3/4 grade on the guy. I know they intend to draft a RB early and as of now I expect DE, LB and RB to be the key targets in R1-3. Seattle could acquire a QB via trade or on the market to compete with Tarvaris Jackson, draft a guy in R4-6 and then go big at the position in 2013.

  125. Colin

    I think it is safe to assume Hector, Seattle isn’t going to be getting anymore QB’s in trades from other teams. I think if Manning doesn’t come here, that 2013 will be the year they make a move for their guy in the draft- and I don’t think it’s out of reason to believe Matt Barkley will be that guy. Some people think he is slated now as the surefire #1 prospect, but I think he’ll drop a bit. And I think if he does, Pete is going to want to make a run for him.

  126. Ryan

    Corrct me if I’m wrong, but won’t Baltimore pick before San Francisco, since the 49ers went 13-3 and the Ravens 12-4, and both lost in the Conference Championships?

  127. David

    @Colin, i believe Kips stated that when the Manning situation is resolved it will begin a Domino Effect and Were supposed to be in play for a QB. Supposedly (and makes sense) whoever picks up Manning, maybe we trade with that team for their QB, the only thing is what do we trade?

  128. Ryan

    Interesting that the franchise’s philosophy seems to be to build the team to a high level, then draft a QB, meaning the inexperienced QB will have a ton of pressure and be expected to win right away as a rookie and his first several years, instead of developing a guy early so that he’s battle-hardened and experienced by the time the rest of the roster is ready to make a run. It’s just odd.

  129. David

    or are they going in a direction where they have all the pieces around him and make it easier for him to play well.

    if you put a QB out there too early it can ruin his confidence and everything will go to trash.

  130. Colin

    @ David, I have a hard time believing that we are going to get a QB of any decent caliber in that trade for whoever gets Manning. Would they be an upgrade over Tarvaris? Probably. I don’t want to spend an arm and a leg and get a mediocre QB (one thing I do like about Tjack, he’s cheap). I’d rather us spend a 4th rounder on Osweiler or Cousins and let TJack finish this year out.

  131. David

    i never said he was going to be decent, but if you hear what pete said (or maybe it was John) but one of them said Tjack would be competing this year, and if thats the case, i dont think we would be putting a rookie into compete with him just yet.

    this is a smart Regime, i dont think they’d pay an Arm and a leg for a QB they didnt think could do the job. I’m just saying what Rob and Kip have been saying for a while now. but i guess we will find out in about two weeks or so.

  132. Colin

    My hunch is Seattle is hoping Cousins or Osweiler is sitting there in the 4th round. Pete has openly said he believes rookie QB’s in this day and age can come in and start day one, so I don’t think he’d be averse to bringing one in at the right price.

  133. Ryan

    If he’s hoping Cousins or Osweiler is still there in R4 (let alone R3), I think he’s going to end up disappointed.

  134. Colin

    I’d agree with that Ryan. I don’t think they’re going to see enough value to take one in the 2nd though. Maybe the 3rd, but I doubt it.

  135. meatwad

    Cousins/Osweiler will both be gone by Rd 3. I feel certain because of how important (most) that position is and how every team needs another QB to either start or compete. Both of those QB’s will be picked up by one of the thirty-two teams before the Hawks 3rd round pick, especially if you base the past couple years and how teams reach for QBs (look in Rd 1-2 the past couple years).

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