Updated mock draft: 4th January

Sam Montgomery tape vs Alabama & Georgia provided to Seahawks Draft Blog by JMPasq

One thing struck me during Pete Carroll’s end-of-season press conference yesterday – his belief in the need for speed. He talked openly about wanting more pace among his front seven, with the pass rush considered a prime target-area for improvement. The Seahawks generated modest pressure during the 2011 season, often relying on Chris Clemons at the LEO specialist position for sacks. The ‘big three’ in the middle – Alan Branch, Brandon Mebane and Red Bryant – combined for four total sacks. If it wasn’t for a seemingly never-ending question mark at the quarterback position, there’s no doubt what Seattle’s most pressing concern would be.

Speaking of quarterbacks, Carroll spent most of his near 50-minute session answering questions about Tarvaris Jackson. It’s hard to get a read on Seattle’s plans solely based on what we discovered here, but it seemed to me that Carroll appreciates what we all know – that Jackson isn’t a long term option, but right now he’s the best quarterback on the roster. The Seahawks need more than 14 passing touchdowns in the regular season. In fact, Matt Hasselbeck and Jackson combined for just 26 passing scores in the last two years. To put that into context, ten quarterbacks scored 26 or more touchdown throws this season alone – including the much maligned Mark Sanchez. Jackson’s scoring totals matched Colt McCoy, were comparable to Blaine Gabbert and Matt Moore had better numbers in 12 starts for Miami. Sure, he battled a torn pectoral muscle. Yet we didn’t see enough from the healthy Jackson to believe he’d taken any giant leaps from his time in Minnesota.

Carroll has actually been fairly open and honest with his press conferences in the past. Last year he spoke of getting bigger up front and making the offensive line a priority. The end product? Seattle spent its first two picks on big bodied lineman. I believe Carroll was 100% telling the truth when he said re-signing Hasselbeck was the #1 priority, but I also believe the lockout and Tennesee’s offer of a three-year deal changed the situation completely. This year, Carroll spoke about the draft depth at quarterback and the amount of work already conducted by John Schneider to get an angle on this QB-class. Perhaps this is just a presumption made far too early to carry any weight, but I felt like the Seahawks weren’t expecting to make any aggressive moves up the board to target Andrew Luck or Robert Griffin III. I do believe the Seahawks will be prepared to ‘make their move’ one day to get their guy at quarterback, I just feel like that quarterback is probably playing in SoCal in 2012. 

So this brings us back to the front seven. Carroll says he wants more speed and that he’s looking for improved inside and outside pressure. This isn’t a great class for interior defensive lineman, so Seattle may be forced to look at outside rushers and athletic linebackers who can bring it from the WILL position. Jarvis Jones (DE, Georgia) would’ve been a perfect fit for the WILL but he’s staying in college. However, a lack of top-end depth could persuade several other players to declare. Michael Brockers (DT, LSU) is among the best interior line prospects in the nation. He’s only a redshirt sophomore and still has a lot of developing to do, but could winning the BCS Championship and seeing a chance to be the #1 player drafted at his position tempt him to turn pro?

Seattle’s pick comes in the form of a different LSU Tiger – outside rusher Sam Montgomery. He’s got a near identical build to Clay Matthews III when he turned pro and a similar intensity on the field. He has nine sacks this season, including a deuce in the 9-6 win over Alabama during the regular season. If the Seahawks are looking for speed and a better pass rush, they could easily line Montgomery opposite Clemons and use a more orthodox 3-4 look with the three big bodies in the middle, while keeping the front four on passing downs. It’s hard to imagine how the Seahawks will significantly improve their pass rush by just improving the outside speed at the WILL linebacker position currently occupied by Leroy Hill. Carroll is quite openly prepared to use a slightly unbalanced line that enhances Red Bryant’s effectiveness as a run stuffer, but also flashes his weakness to provide any kind of edge threat. The only issue is run defense and the lack of size the Seahawks would have at the edge. That’s why they may have to ultimately consider switching to a 3-4 to use players like Clemons and potentially Montgomery, unless they’re going to rely on the linebackers to force runs wide. They have the size at cornerback to manage run support, but ideally you want to remain big up front.

Note: Mohamed Sanu (WR, Rutgers) returns for this week’s mock after choosing to declare. Luke Kuelchy (LB, Boston College) has been removed after reports suggested he was leaning towards returning to Boston College.

Updated first round mock draft

#1 Andrew Luck (QB, Stanford)
Despite a lot of talk about keeping Manning and drafting Luck, it remains an unlikely proposition. Long term thinking will win out.
#2 Matt Kalil (OT, USC)
The Rams have to take Kalil, he’s too good to pass up. There’s enough depth at receiver to wait until round two.
#3 Jonathan Martin (OT, Stanford)
Minnesota would love a shot at Kalil. It might be a bit of a reach, but protecting Christian Ponder must be a priority.
#4 Trent Richardson (RB, Alabama)
Last year Cincinnati used this pick to draft a supreme playmaker in AJ Green, before taking a quarterback in round two. Cleveland might do the same.
#5 Morris Claiborne (CB, LSU)
He’s had a fantastic season with six interceptions. This seems like an obvious match for the Buccs.
#6 Riley Reiff (OT, Iowa)
I still predict Peyton Manning will be a Redskin, and that Mike Shanahan will target Ryan Tannehill in round two for the future.
#7 Justin Blackmon (WR, Oklahoma State)
This is too high for Blackmon in my opinion, but his production will interest teams. The Jaguars need to help Blaine Gabbert.
#8 Robert Griffin III (QB, Baylor)
Miami will pick 8th if they win a coin toss with Carolina. If Cleveland and Washington pass, RG3 will take his talents to South Beach.
#9 Michael Brockers (DT, LSU)
A complete lack of defensive line talent could encourage one or two unexpected players to declare. Brockers is one to watch against Alabama.
#10 Dwight Jones (WR, North Carolina)
If Stevie Johnson doesn’t return, the Bills will be paper-thin at receiver. Jones is the complete package.
#11 Sam Montgomery (DE, LSU)
Built like Clay Matthews and with a similar intensity. Montgomery could play opposite Chris Clemons to improve Seattle’s pass rush.
#12 Barrett Jones (OT, Alabama)
Another underclassmen few expect to declare, but a need at tackle and a weak top-15 group could push him into the NFL.
#13 Andre Branch (DE, Clemson)
With the tackles leaving the board early, Arizona will be forced to address their second most important need – an outside rush.
#14 Dre Kirkpatrick (CB, Alabama)
He’s big and good in run support, but struggles in coverage at times. Jerry Jones will like this guy, so will Eli Manning.
#15 Zach Brown (LB, North Carolina)
The Eagles will look closely at the linebacker position and Brown is a good fit for Philly’s scheme.
#16 Mark Barron (S, Alabama)
Few players have enjoyed the level of progress shown by Barron in 2011. He’s firmly in the round one equation.
#17 David DeCastro (OG, Stanford)
Slightly over rated, a technician who looks great on the move but lacks elite power at the point of attack.
#18 Courtney Upshaw (OLB, Alabama)
The kind of pass rusher San Diego have drafted in the past. They need to find some outside pressure.
#19 Kendall Wright (WR, Baylor)
The ultimate deep threat. Jay Cutler will get the most out of Wright, who should be able to have a Mike Wallace-type impact.
#20 Quinton Coples (DE, North Carolina)
Coples is a complete enigma. He has the physical talents to be great, but we don’t see enough of it on tape.
#21 Janoris Jenkins (CB, North Alabama)
Elite cornerback talent but troubled by off-field problems. The Bengals needs to draft a corner and Jenkins is good enough to start quickly.
#22 Michael Floyd (WR, Notre Dame)
Cleveland needs to keep adding playmakers. Floyd has his issues, but put him on that offense with Trent Richardson and it’ll be much improved. They’d still need a quarterback.
#23 Whitney Mercilus (DE, Illinois)
With 14.5 sacks this year, someone will give him a chance early in the draft. Detroit has bigger needs but could show interest here.
#24 Lamar Miller (RB, Miami)
The Broncos run the ball well and could look to add another back to their stable. Carolina had two first round runners under John Fox.
#25 Michael Egnew (TE, Missouri)
He’s very much the modern tight end – a pure pass catcher who will make spectacular plays downfield.
#26 Vontaze Burfict (LB, Arizona State)
Although I think his stock is falling, someone could take a shot on Burfict. My guess is he’ll end up playing AFC North..
#27 Devon Still (DT, Penn State)
I’m still trying to get an angle on Still. It often looks like his best fit may be at the five-technique.
#28 Peter Konz (OC, Wisconsin)
Stood out last year in a big-name Badgers offensive line. Could return for another year, but ready to have an impact as a pro
#29 Mohamed Sanu (WR, Rutgers)
Sanu can line up anywhere and Jim Harbaugh will find different ways to get him involved. Another powerful weapon for San Fran.
#30 Jonathan Cooper (OG, North Carolina)
A player not a lot of people are talking about, but has stood out every time I’ve watched the Tar Heels this season.
#31 Alshon Jeffery (WR, South Carolina)
Jeffery divides opinion. He is capable of making big plays, but he runs sloppy routes and looks ‘too big’. Could go much earlier than this, or much later.
#32 Fletcher Cox (DT, Mississippi State)
He plays a bit like a runaway train. He’s a bit unbalanced, but moves well for a big guy. He looks ideal for a move to the 5-technique position.


  1. Meat

    I agree with you Rob after listening to PC I get the impression that if a QB is drafted it is in round 2/3 and won’t be trading up to grab the QBOTF. We all knew Jackson is the starter next year. It is funny to listen to the local station regarding the QB class and what the Hawks should do regarding the position.

    I can’t recall from prior discussions, but there is not big names in free agency for a pass rusher?

  2. James

    Barrett Jones of Alabama has definitively announced that he is returning to school for his senior year. Nick Saban will probably move him to Center, which appears to be his natural position, though he won the Outland trophy as a LT and RG this year.

    I look forward to your analysis of Matt Flynn. 480 yds, 6 TDs and a 150 passer rating against a playoff team fighting hard for a win is beyond anything TJack would do in his dreams. I don’t see how anyone could put up numbers like these, in these conditions, unless he had the right stuff. I haven’t seen the game, but the highlights show that all his key passes were delivered to the right receiver at the right time, and hit him right in the hands in stride.

  3. Rob

    I wasn’t aware of that, James. I’ve heard differing reports on Jones. Thanks for the info.

  4. Colin

    Mario Williams and Cliff Avril will be free agents. Interesting if Williams will test the market.

    This draft looks poor for the Seahawks. No really elite talent on defense or offensive weapons that are a can’t miss.

    I think it’s RG3 or bust. That or Seattle has to pull something big in a trade down the board. Let’s not forget Denver gave us their 1st so they could move up in the 2nd round in 2009. It could happen.

  5. Danzell

    Hey Rob ! If I remember correctly you once thought very highly of Bruce Irvin. Has he fallen completely off the map or do you still consider him to be a solid addition to this team?

  6. Ryan

    I think I’d be apoplectic if Griffin was still available at #7 and we didn’t move up four spots to get him. We can have differing opinions about whether it’s worth moving up to #2 or not, but only moving up a few spots seems an absolute no-brainer.

    I have faith in the FO’s ability to find talented pass rushers later in the draft. There are many of them out there, and not many starter-quality QBs. If you take the pass rusher early, with the hope of taking Austin Davis in rounds 3 or 4, and someone takes him in round 2, you’re hosed. No offense to you, Rob, since I know it’s nigh impossible to factor in trades in these mocks, but I’d have trouble if Seattle actually approached the draft this way. Great work as always, thanks.

    Get Griffin.

  7. Jim Q.

    Rob: RE: Outside rushers, have you looked at all at OLB Sammy Brown from Houston? He is 6-3, 240, 4.67/40, and had 89 total tackles, 52 solo, with 13.5 sacks this season (level of competition = ??). He is currently ranked 227 overall at cbssports.com, maybe has potential as a somewhat later round pick.

  8. Jmpasq

    Here is Sammy Brown


  9. Tom

    The one thing I’ve learned listening to Pete Carroll over the 2 years and I like Pete is that he’s a politician and you can’t really trust what he says in conference calls as he’s not going to tip his hand.

    Does anyone really believe Pete would even hint that TJack isn’t his guy or that Pete wants to move up to draft a QB? No way because if a traded isn’t consummated, then Pete loses TJack’s confidence and overall trust.

    I clearly remember Pete praising Aaron Curry and his improvement and how they were going to use him and it was but a few weeks later that Curry re-structured his contract and was shipped to Oakland.

    Pete understands psychology and reason I do like him as one of the leaders our organization.

    If Pete stands pat at #11/12 and grabs some ho hum player and tries to pull a rabbit in round 2, then my confidence in his vision will take a big hit and as fans we should question what he’s doing.

    I believe Pete is too smart and has tried to patch the dented fender with bondo for 2 seasons now and he knows it’s time to get a new car or replace the whole quarter panel at QB.

  10. Tom

    I know you don’t factor in trades, Robs, as it may appear to take on a fantasyland mock draft, but you may want to add an addendum because Spielman said Ponder is his guy for 2012. Why trust Rick? You don’t give a #12 draft pick 1 year, give him the assurance and then draft RG3.


    With that in mind, I’m sure you’ll agree wholeheartedly, that the #3 selection is for sale to the highest bidder. Rick Spielman can’t honestly think that Jonathon Martin is worthy of the 3rd pick in this draft. No way. If the price is right, dropping to #11/12 isn’t that far to go and still get a player for a team that has plenty of holes as long as our offer is solid.

    I don’t see both Martin or Richardson going top 5 with RG3 still on the board but again, that’s just my take.

    Good stuff by you.

  11. Rymong

    In regards to the Montgomery footage above, I see some things that give me serious reservations…

    1. Against Alabama, he is sometimes handled by a TE. That is a big no-no for DE’s in the NFL. Even though Clemons is undersized, he usually throws TE’s around.

    2. In all of the footage, he beats the OT around the corner once, maybe twice.

    3. Biggest issue: He is consistently slow off the snap. I thought it was because he was watching the OT’s movement instead of the ball, but it happens even when he is lined up inside. He is consistently the last defensive lineman off at the snap, sometimes severely so.

  12. Rob

    Danzell – I’m still a Bruce Irvin fan, but he struggled a bit on a full-time gig. West Virginia didn’t help the situation by bizarrely playing him in a three man front a lot of the time, but some of the concerns about his size were really emphasised. As a spot pass rusher he’s still a really dynamic player who warrants consideration as a rusher in space.

    Rymong – some very fair observations there and I particularly agree with the one about being slow off the snap on occassions. He faces a lot of double teams, but I think he does an under rated job taking blocks despite his size and he’s not being asked to do a lot of outside rushing, a lot of the time he’s cutting inside or setting the edge. That Alabama game was brutal, like watching a bar-fight in the trenches. I think Montgomery came out of it well, but clearly he’s not the next Aldon Smith or Von Miller. There’s something there though and let’s not forget Clay Matthews only had four sacks his final year at USC playing at linebacker. Like Matthews, I expect Montgomery’s better days to come in the pro’s.

  13. Ed

    If anyone has seen hawks opponents for 2012, we could be a 4-12 very easily (which could mean in reach of barkley). With how teams view rb’s, any way richardson falls to us (only browns and maybe bucs could use rb), and if so, we take him and get barkley next year with our line and off we go to a very bright future

  14. Rob

    If Seattle goes 4-12 next season I fear for this regime. That would be a major step backwards and three years into a five-year contract, going backwards isn’t good news. A lot can happen in 12 months, but I don’t expect this team to be that bad, but if they are – I’m not convinced they’d be in position to draft Barkley.

  15. jim J

    I like your thoughts on improving the defensive line. I was wondering why you couldn’t use a big 3-4 linemen in a 4-3 line? Does it really matter so much if they are slower? There are a couple good nose tackles coming out this year.

  16. Rob

    I don’t think adding size is a necessity, Jim. The Seahawks need a pass rusher – whether that’s on the outside or the interior. I’ve not scouted a top-end nose tackle this year in the same ball park as Phil Taylor, but they’d have to be able to get to the QB if they’re going to be considered in Seattle. Brandon Mebane and Alan Branch already provide enough size, really the need is there for an athletic three-technique who can play every down – hold up against the run, but also make plays in the backfield. It’s a desperate need, but unfortunately such a player isn’t obviously available at #11 or #12 unless Michael Brockers declares and makes it to that pick.

  17. Norm M

    Rob, I agree 100%. There is no way the Seahawks are going to be a 4-12 team next season, even with a tough schedule. If you look at some of the close games we lost this year we were just a couple of third down stops away from a wins (AZ, San Fran, Washington, and Cleveland.) With no real chance of picking a first round QB this year, getting a pass rushing DE, LB, or even an interior lineman who can pressure the QB could be the difference from a 7-9 records to 10-6. I’m just getting excited about this year’s off season without projecting next years picks. I don’t know if I can stand another season of the hoping we loose hype. Sorry Ed.

    I have faith in PC to either find a project QB later in the draft or pick up Flynn in FA if he really sees a need for improvement next year. Even with TJ behind center for another season I feel we will be a greatly improved team. A full off season of workouts and being 100% healthy should allow TJ to improve on this season. Picking up a pass rusher who can make 8-10 sacks on those critical third downs will be enough to improve on this season’s record and get us into the playoffs. Here’s to hoping we pick in the 30’s next year.

  18. MLT

    What unrestricted free agent DE’s are available this year? Mario williams is about the only 1 I know of that’s young! Calais campbell? I feel like we can address this need in free agency and later round maybe 3 or 4! we need qb, or pete also said another playmaker on offense! If blackmon, or dwight jones slip 2 us and no qb worth 11 or 12 should they consider 1 of these guys? I hope we trade up to the 6-8 range and get RG3 but if not then why not help your offense in other ways for a lot of years?

  19. Fletcher

    I find the idea of a 3-4 really intriguing, having Branch, Mebane, and Red as the line and Clemons and a draft pick as the outside rush linebackers with Hawthorne and Wright moving inside. They could also alternate back into their 4-3 on some downs with the current line, Hawthorne as the will, Wright as the mike and either the draft pick or a veteran like Vobora as the sam. Would Montgomery be able to fill that role and do you think it is viable? This assumes Hill is not retained.

  20. Ben H

    Why is Jake Bequette not more highly thought of by the scouting community? He plays for a prominent school, has had solid production with 15 sacks over the past two seasons, he has an excellent NFL build, and absolutely pops off the screen every time I’ve seen him play. The guy is an explosive athlete. It doesn’t make any sense to me.

  21. Billy Showbiz

    We could take this team as it is now into next season and get 9 wins in my opinion. If they can pick up where they left off the Hawks can beat just about anyone in the league. The defense and the O-line are only going to get better with seasoning and although QB is a glaring need, Tarvaris should also continue to improve if he is starting next year. I hope they make a move for Griffin but if they don’t I have every bit of confidence that they will find some solid players in this draft just like they have in the last two.

  22. Craiger


    “I do believe the Seahawks will be prepared to ‘make their move’ one day to get their guy at quarterback, I just feel like that quarterback is probably playing in SoCal in 2012.”

    I really hope this is not the case. While I’d love to see Barkley in blue, there is no way this team is going to be anywhere near the first three picks where he will almost certainly be selected. That ship has sailed and if Pete and John are placing their eggs in the Barkley basket next season, we may as well begin talking about the next regime. I trust that these guys know what they are doing. If nothing else, it is apparent that they have a plan and are prepared to execute that plan without panic. Personally, I’m warming to the Matt Flynn idea while continuing to build the team with “best available player” during the draft. Awesome job as always, Rob.

  23. Rob

    Fletcher – that makes absolute sense to me.

    Ben H – I’m a big fan of Jake Bequette’s and would love to see him in Seattle. His stock is slightly limited because there’s a lot of doubt as to whether he could adapt to the 3-4. He looks like a 4-3 DE to me, but he’s playing at about 265lbs so it’s not a prototypical fit for most 4-3’s. In Seattle though, I think he’d thrive in space without the coverage responsibilities. A player to keep an eye on, he’s a solid round three grade to me. The type of guy who could easily make everyone question why he lasted so long, but just as easily fail to have an impact on the league. Fun player to watch though.

    Craiger – I completely agree on Barkley. If they want to keep improving, that ship has indeed sailed. Barkley was attainable in a draft where he could’ve been the third guy off the board at his position. As the most likely #1 fit – it’s difficult to imagine he’ll be within Seattle’s reach. Everyone should know my stance by now – we need to find a QB for the long haul as a point or urgency, but I also want to see what this front office can do with as many picks as possible. I’m not keen on Matt Flynn, having said that.

  24. Ed

    Wow, I don’t want to sound like a downer, because I love that we come to play, but talent for talent I see 4-12 more than 9-7. The Rams self imploded (with injuries) and should get a big upswing next year, we got swept by the 49ers and split with the cards. Then we get (Cowboys/Patriots/Jets/Vikings/Packers/Dolphins/Bills/Bears/Lions/Panthers). All the away games are long roadtrips. I wouldn’t see it as a step backwards, because I really think we have overachieved. We basically rebuilt with two 7-9 records, which in and of itself is phenominal.

  25. Ed

    Do you see richardson slipping (rb don’t usually go high) and outside of cleveland and tampa bay, nobody needs one. If so, he would give us an explosive threat to pair with beast mode and really make people respect the run (then go pa to rice/baldwin)

  26. ba_edwards24

    I figure our needs and targets like this:
    1) Franchise QB. Available in Rd 1 via trade or hopefully FA.
    2)Base-package pass rushers. Available in Rd 1,2, or FA (Seen some people asking: Mario Williams, Cliff Avril, Calais Campbell, and Manny Lawson)
    3) Sub-package pass rushers. Available in Rd 2-5 or FA (Amobi Okoye, Wallace Gilberry, Kroy Biermann, Jeremy Mincey, and a personal favorite Jason Jones).
    4) Sideline-to-sideline LB. Available Rd 2-4 or FA (Geno Hayes, Dan Connor)
    5) Deep Threat Split End. Available Rd 1-3 or FA. (Robert Meachem, Mario Manningham, Pierre Garcon)

  27. MLT

    Ba_edwards love the breakdown of needs! To me that is spot on of what I think we should do! I think there is better options in free agency @ DE then through the draft! We could grab a guy in the later rounds of 3 or 4 and groom him to what we want! I trust pc/js in the later rounds! Why waste a 1st rounder on a reach when we could get get a playmaker on offense that will make an impact right away! I know this, it was offense mainly of why we lost games this year! Yes are defense isn’t perfect and could use more pass rush! But if we had the same defense as this year with a playmaker or 2 added plus everyone healthy we would be in the playoffs as we speak! 1 playmaker alone would have prob got us the win in cleveland and against the skins! Anyways my point is that defense is our strong point! Why reach for something that isn’t really broke? I feel like our offense needs another deep threat and dynamic playmaker, add that in to our offense with lynch and everyone else the hawks all the sudden can run and take it deep when needed! Of course qb is our #1 need if we can get 1 but if not I believe our offense needs the help more then our defense!!

  28. Jim J

    Last year our defensive line played hurt, and we lost games because of it. This year the offensive line was hurt and we lost a lot of games because of it (not to mention TJ got sacked way too many times). So we have to keep choosing linemen until we can field a healthy line and backups. Plus if you look at the age of our lines, the defense is older and the offense younger. Unfortunately players don’t last forever, and when they get injured it is harder for them to recover as they age. So it all boils down to our team needing replacements, and even if they don’t play much next year they will work into the team down the road. Also their is the idea of rotating the defensive line every few plays to keep them fresh, so you need extra players for that.

  29. MLT

    Offensive line depth can be found in later rounds or free agency! I feel we have sufficent young backups right now! Lynch was the leading rusher in the league the last half of the season with those backups, we need d linemen depth the worst out of the 2 lines! Hell I would say LB depth is more needed then offensive line! the most important thing for our o line is to keep tom cable! When is the official date of free agency to start? I can’t wait and see what direction we go! We should have a lot better idea after that which way the draft should go! I’m pumped up and have full faith in the regime to make us a playoff team next year!!

  30. Andrew

    As far as the Montgomery footage I agree with Rymong above about him being handled by tight ends being a big concern as well as being slow off the snap. My other area of concern is he looks extremely raw in terms of technique. Most of the time when he recognized pass he just kept bull rushing and didn’t try to create separation from the blocker. I agree we need more pass rush ASAP, but I don’t think a project like this will help the Hawk’s rush until 2013 at the earliest.

  31. Danzell

    Thanks for the answer Rob, I also thought he was a very promising player. And I still hope we will get him. It would really be nice if they could get RG3 in round 1 and Irvin in 2. But i guess that would categorize as wishful thinking 😉

  32. Meat

    Hawks have invested a lot of 1-2 round picks in the OL the past couple years. This year with Cable at the helm has really provided the line with some depth. It is foolish to invest another first round pick in yet another OL when it would be used for depth. The Hawks would use free agency and later rounds for depth.

    I believe Ba_edwards is spot on regarding addressing the Hawks needs and priority. I do not think Flynn will in a Hawks uniform especially with what he will probably fetch in free agency. Plus, I would rather see the Hawks invest in moving up in this years draft for one of the two QBs. However, I see the Hawks trading down instead of trading up this year.

    DO NOT LET CABLE GO! I would like to see him give at least another 1-2 years with this line before he left for a HC job elsewhere.

  33. matt

    I see Seattle trading out of the 11th or 12th spot. Most likely with Cleveland for their extra pick from Atlanta and getting Cleveland’s second round pick. With those picks I can easily see them picking up a DE in the first (21-25 range depending on how well Atlanta does in playoffs) and QB (Tannehill) in the second (#37 Cleveland’s second round pick). And also having another second round pick to play with. Depending on who is still on the board with Seattle’s second round pick (#43) I see them either picking up a DT or LB. Third round will be a speedy running back and forsett will be gone.

  34. Tman

    It appears more and more likely that the hawks have Matt Flynn in their sights, In fact, their recent moves at quarterback suggest that they have been targeting him all along as a free agent.

    You are correct. The greatest need is for a speed pass rusher and they will use their first pick to get one. If not, look to Schneider to trade down to get more picks.

  35. seattlesetters

    Thanks, Rob, for all the work and analysis. I absolutely love your take on things and the logic you provide is some of the best on the web.

    I’m not a huge fan of the pick, however, due to the same reasons mentioned above. Good TEs and capable RBs will handle Montgomery far easier than we’d like, IMHO.

    I’m a huge fan of the BPA philosophy. It’s how teams get better and keep a healthy supply of young talent in the pool. There’s nothing like a little competition (even in areas where there doesn’t seem to be a need) to make everyone better (or trade bait, if they don’t produce). As such, I’d hope the FO doesn’t reach for a pass rusher in a draft that appears to be lacking elite talent. If one falls to us, fine. If not, I’m down with a CB, LB, OL, DT, WR…whatever player is there who could provide an instant impact.

    With the status quo, I don’t see the ‘Hawks being anything more than a 7-9 win team next year. Our issue, same as this year, is that we simply cannot score touchdowns in a league which requires them for success. Until that changes, opponents will simply stack the box against us and be willing to play the game between the 20 yard lines, knowing full well they have a better chance of stopping us in the red zone.

    Someone above mentioned a 4-12 season would jeopardize Pete Carroll’s job. I agree with one caveat: If we go 4-12 and Tarvaris Jackson is the starting QB, it could (and perhaps should) cost Carroll his job. I think 4-12 with a rookie QB would be more than forgiveable, however, as fans will be more tolerant of the youngster’s rookie mistakes.

    That being said, I’m not entirely on the RG3 bandwagon. I don’t think we need to give up too much to get him. If he falls below #5, then it might be worth trading up, but certainly not to #2 or #3.

    Which brings me, finally, to Matt Flynn. There’s no doubt in my mind he’s miles better than T-Jack. You could give Jackson first-team reps with Green Bay’s offense every day in practice for six years and he would not be able to accomplish half of what Flyyn did against Detroit….ever. I’m not sure that makes Flyyn a franchise QB, though. Add that to the unfortunate realization that bringing Flyyn in means Pete has to go at least 8-8 or better or keep the wolves at bay, and I’m not so sure Matty Ice II ends up here, either.

  36. Rob

    I think that’s very presumptive, Tman. I’m not sure Seattle are interested in Flynn at all, let alone having targeted him all along.

  37. Soggyblogger

    Since you said you believe the Seahawks QBOTF is playing for SoCal, AND PC’s friend and colleague, Sarkisian, said he thinks Barkley is better than Luck, I have a plan to get him: Trade down with whichever team is potentially the worst team NEXT year for their No.1 draft pick NEXT YEAR. Give them our No.1 this year for their No. 1 next year. They would take a lot of criticism for such a move, but Pete has said he and JS agree that for the RIGHT GUY a team has to do whatever it takes to land him. Assuming the Colts would trade Luck, maybe they could get him for a couple of first round draft choices, but most think Peyton Manning will get traded instead, and I hope the Seahawks don’t give the farm away for an aging, injury prone vet with only a few more years left at best no matter how good he had been in the past.

    Another possibility would be to trade next years No.1 with that other teams No. 1 plus our third rounder next year to get the deal done. It appeals to the ego of the other team. In effect saying, “we are willing to bet you guys will be horrible next year….” and the other team has to think: “No, we are improving and will teach them….” It might require our second round pick next year instead of third, but if Pete and John can identify who they really believe will be horrible next year it would be a good gamble ASSUMING they really really believe Barkley is who they want.

    If they only end up with a top five pick, THAT would be easier to trade up to get Barkley next year then our 20th position pick which we have to assume we will have based upon the improving condition of the Seahawks and, probably, an easier schedule next year.

  38. Dave

    Im among those that are cold on this pick.. Montgomery only appears to get coverage sacks and is mostly controled/dominated at the point of attack. Thanks for showing that Richardson run though where Montgomery is thrown to the ground that was an awesome run. As far as drafting based on future potential we will see.. I remember seeing Shermans college tapes and being confused why we drafted him but the staff obviously saw something in him and knew what they could get out of him… would rather a guy like Montgomery be taken in the later rounds though if its just based off of potential…

  39. Misfit74

    Landry Jones returned to school along with (obviously) Matt Barkely, leaving the QB-market thin. If Matt Flynn wasn’t in their plans before, he very well could be now.

    I wouldn’t be surprised if we spent more assets on the Offensive Line. Will all these guys come back ready/healthy? Gallery is getting long in the tooth (though perhaps less-worrisome for the position). Could we draft another OT and think about James playing Guard? Could we draft another Guard to compete with Moffitt and Gallery as an eventual replacement/injury-replacement?

    I’m not sure how we upgrade Branch, Mebane, or Bryant. It would take a special player to provide pass-rush and rival the run-support those three provide and I’m not sure such a player is available. Are there some Suhs or Gerald McCoys or Nick Fairleys in this draft?

    Yes, Sid Rice is coming back but if I have to see Obomanu on the field next year I might puke. I wouldn’t be unhappy if a guy like Blackmon fell to us, give the dearth of 1st-round caliber QBs. Sometimes adding the BPA – the best ‘talent’ is the way to go when you don’t have to shift everything for ‘need’. We could find our team in such a scenario.

  40. David

    I dont see us going O-line unless its later in the draft, maybe 5th or later, the hawks are really high on Jarriel King, he played a bit and i think against the eagles he was in and blocked for Lynch when he got one of his TD’s

  41. Danzell

    @ David

    That was also the play where he pulled a hamstring as Lynch was moving past him 🙂

  42. Rob

    Pete Carroll basically ruled out drafting for the offensive line in his press conference. Saying the player would ‘have to be special’ (or something close to that) was near enough saying it’s not the direction they will go. They’ve got depth there, as we’ve seen towards the end of the season. And considering Landry Jones was never a realistic option for Seattle anyway given his skill set, I doubt his return to school changes much. Carroll referred to Flynn as ‘their backup guy’. I don’t think he’s what they’re looking for and the hype around him at the moment is quite stunning. He’s nowhere near as good as some people want you to believe and I doubt teams will be falling over themselves to sign him. I actually think he could return to Green Bay.

  43. Meat

    @rob-your comment is exactly what I was thinking. 🙂
    I also think trading pics to a team that they think may have a poor record next year would be strange and not worth a risk, and risk trading up for one of the two QB’s would make more sense in my opinion.

    Watching some tape on Dwight Jones. He runs a 40 just a tenth under Kendall Wright, and he is 6’4. It appears like a very good WR class and he might drop to the 2nd round.

  44. Meat

    Where will Nick Perry fall? Not a first rounder?

  45. Jarhead

    Well this is late news, but Luke Kuechly has indeed declared for the draft, so there is our pick right there. Our Brian Urlacher. It’s not a reach, ILB is a need, and he will be the best player available with that pick. There are plenty of big and fast DE’s in later rounds, and I honestly believe that we should address that need more in FA than the draft. It’s just not a very deep class all around. This has gone from an incredibly deep class to a mediocre class of talent at best.

  46. JS

    For those suggesting we wait and go after Barkley, let it go. He’s gone. I can’t imagine any Seahawks fans watching draft position for another year hoping for a QB. I’ve done that two years now and it sucks. Barkley will be a top 5 if not 1. What if the Hawks get a wild card and are picking in the 20’s? It would be silly to wait a full year. He could get hurt (I know Bradford did and still went #1, but it’s still a risk). What if there 3 teams in the top 5 that need a QB. It’s an interesting year this year since the top 3 teams don’t really need to pick a QB. Obviously, the Colts will take Luck, but if Luck wasn’t available I wonder what they would’ve done. I’ve some fans say the schedule looks tough suggesting the Hawks will be in the top 10 again, and I disagree with the exception of NE and GB who are both at home I believe. I’m not afraid of the Cowboys or the Jets or the Lions even (granted Calvin Johnson is scary, but is there a better equipped secondary to handle him?). Ultimately what I mean to say is that PLANNING for Barkley is stupid. There are too many factors that make it risky and they have to focus on ’12. Anything else would be silly. I’ll beat a dead horse and suggest they trade up for Griffin.

  47. jason

    Rob can you tell me what you think of Brock from ASU. I now he is a project but if you can get him late i think his upside is huge.

  48. Rob

    There’s some obvious physical qualities to Osweiler – arm strength, mobility, height. I have some reservations he’s going to go much earlier than people think due to the potential, for example – round two range. Work outs will be crucial.

  49. Jarhead

    Good call Rob. He is a player who I feel was done a great disservice by his college with the firing of his HC Erickson and essential QB guru Mazzone. Did they expect him to come back for only one more year and learn an entirely different system on the fly? So his hand was a bit forced when he would’ve been better served with another year in college. Luck came back into a similar situation, but the general system was unchanged and Osweiler is certainly not Luck. I also foresee Osweiler going Round 2 and Round 3 at the latest. Tannehill has no business in the first round but you never know. And I believe some team will reach on Foles in the 2nd as well. Some of the impatience and immaturity issues you see in Osweiler I feel could’ve been remedied given another full year if starting and good coaching. He’s in a tough spot…

  50. Colin

    Is taking Courtney Upshaw at 11 too high? Would he fit in Seattle’s scheme? That guy was a stud tonight. Reading between the lines from Pete has said, he wants an upgrade at Linebacker. I have a feeling Hawthorne won’t be back. He seems to be injury prone and Pete/John might be too hesitant to sign him longterm. KJ can slide to the middle and you can have Upshaw slide in a WLB and maybe resign HIll to play SLB???Again, just speculation.

  51. Rob

    It really depends what you believe Upshaw can do at the next level. I like his hustle, he looks a NFL player. Can you use him in a four man front? Can he switch to linebacker? Can his lack of elite burst and length be combatted by his ability to gain leverage? I’m torn as to whether the Seahawks would show interest.

  52. Dave

    Hate to beat a dead horse on this one but Montgomery got handled again last night. One play in particular he got walled off and neutralized by a Wide receiver who didn’t even get low. Montgomery pretty much just let the Wr hold the edge.. it was pretty sad to watch a defensive end neutralized by a wideout.. I just don’t see anything in this guy.

  53. Rob

    Agreed, Dave – a very disappointing performance. He isn’t declaring for the draft so won’t be part of the next mock.

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