Updated mock draft & discussing linebackers

Pete Carroll mentioned ‘linebacker’ as a need in his end of season press conference.

Defensive backs. Offensive linemen. That was expected.

Linebacker? Don’t they have Bobby Wagner and K.J. Wright? Didn’t Mike Morgan start 29% of the snaps some of the time and as little as 5% in other games?

Still, there are three possible reasons why this is a target need:

1. Depth
It’s currently Mike Morgan, Kevin Pierre-Louis and Brock Coyle. One of these three has to play.

2. Base formation
Would they like to play more in base or just feel more comfortable when they do?

3. Strong draft
Looking at the linebackers potentially available at #26 compared to some of the other need positions, it might be the best chance to draft a core impact player.

Let’s represent this in a mock draft. Here are some other things to consider…

1. Haason Reddick looks like a top-20 pick
Production, elite athletic profile, great character, outstanding Senior Bowl week. The Seahawks will be lucky if he lasts until pick #26.

2. Vanderbilt’s Zach Cunningham is also really good
He has unique length and great size. He had 16.5 TFL’s in 2016 as a pure linebacker (and he doesn’t rush like Reddick).

3. Reuben Foster will be long gone by #26
He should be gone in the top-12 and could be the next Wagner or Kuechly.

Who else is available?

Florida’s Jarrad Davis. Bruce Feldman named him on his list of college ‘freaks’ in pre-season, noting:

Gators LB coach Randy Shannon said Davis has the competitiveness of Jon Vilma, the athleticism of Jon Beason and the football knowledge of Ray Lewis. DC Geoff Collins told me that Davis’ “desire, drive and willpower are at the highest levels there is. Every rep he takes at practice or in a walkthrough is at a game-level focus. He’s as intense of an individual as I’ve ever been around and one of the highest character kids as well.” The 6-2, 240-pounder has timed in the 40 in the mid-4.5s and done 318 pounds in the clean and jerk.

If he is capable of running in the mid-4.5’s as suggested above, that’ll be similar to Luke Kuechly (4.58). Davis is listed at 6-2 and 238lbs, Kuechly is 6-3 and 242lbs.

He won’t blow up the combine like Haason Reddick. The key is to have a really good workout. Kevin Wiedl’s review of Davis suggests it’s possible:

He is an explosive athlete who has sideline-to-sideline range and an internal GPS for the football. Although he needs to add bulk and improve his point-of-attack skills, Davis is a name we’ll hear a lot next fall as a prospect. “Space” linebackers such as Davis are coveted in today’s NFL.

For the Seahawks it might be harder to define this position with a specific physical profile. Bobby Wagner was a 4.4 athlete, Kevin Pierre-Louis ran a 4.51 and jumped a 39-inch vertical. Bruce Irvin is/was a freak.

However, K.J. Wright ran a 4.75 at the 2011 combine with a so-so 32-inch vertical. In his case length (nearly 35-inch arms) was the unique aspect he offered.

Navorro Bowman, one of the best linebackers in recent years, ran a 4.77 at the 2010 combine at 6-0 and 242lbs. He improved it to a 4.62 at his pro-day.

Across the league, there are varying physical profiles among the NFL’s best linebackers.

Whatever Davis achieves at the combine, this anonymous AFC Executive maybe sums it up:

“He’s good. I don’t care about some of those holes you are talking about. Kill him so maybe somebody will listen to you and he can fall to us. We’ll take him.”

Another name? How about Houston’s Tyus Bowser.

He had a really nice Senior Bowl. He’s 6-3 and 244lbs and possibly as twitchy as any other player in this draft. He might’ve had the play of the week in Mobile beating Antonio Garcia in the OL vs DL drills. It was like a scene from the Matrix. His ability to lean and dip while retaining balance and finishing was exquisite.

Can he cover? Reports suggest he didn’t do a great job at the Senior Bowl in coverage but there is some evidence available:

Here’s what an AFC Scouting Director says about Bowser:

“His tape from last year and this year are way different. He’s getting better. There will be some teams who miss him because their scouts are too lazy to keep an open mind that they will have written him off. He will be an early NFL starter. Watch.”

That, ultimately, is what the Seahawks need. An impact, early starter. While Davis is more of a traditional plug-in-and-play OLB, Bowser has the potential to be a dynamic SAM/LEO.

It’s worth debating different options. You might think a great cornerback or offensive tackle would be a better pick. What if that player isn’t available? That’s what we have to consider here.

We have a month to kill until the combine. We have plenty of time to talk about different options in round one.

First round mock draft

#1 Cleveland — Myles Garrett (EDGE, Texas A&M)
#2 San Francisco — Deshaun Watson (QB, Clemson)
#3 Chicago — Malik Hooker (S, Ohio State)
#4 Jacksonville — Solomon Thomas (DE, Stanford)
#5 Tennessee — Jonathan Allen (DE, Alabama)
#6 New York Jets — Leonard Fournette (RB, LSU)
#7 San Diego — Jamal Adams (S, LSU)
#8 Carolina — Dalvin Cook (RB, Florida State)
#9 Cincinnati — Reuben Foster (LB, Alabama)
#10 Buffalo — Mitch Trubisky (QB, North Carolina)
#11 New Orleans — O.J. Howard (TE, Alabama)
#12 Cleveland — Marlon Humphrey (CB, Alabama)
#13 Arizona — Sidney Jones (CB, Washington)
#14 Indianapolis — Marshon Lattimore (CB, Ohio State)
#15 Philadelphia (via Minnesota) — Mike Williams (WR, Clemson)
#16 Baltimore — Haason Reddick (LB, Temple)
#17 Washington — Jabrill Peppers (S, Michigan)
#18 Tennessee — Tre’Davious White (CB, LSU)
#19 Tampa Bay — Budda Baker (S, Washington)
#20 Denver — Garett Bolles (T, Utah)
#21 Detroit — Taco Charlton (EDGE, Michigan)
#22 Miami — Zach Cunningham (LB, Vanderbilt)
#23 New York Giants — Ryan Ramcyzk (T, Wisconsin)
#24 Oakland — Derek Barnett (DE, Tennessee)
#25 Houston — Charles Harris (EDGE, Missouri)
#26 Seattle — Jarrad Davis (LB, Florida) or Tyus Bowser (LB, Houston)
#27 Kansas City — Takkarist McKinley (EDGE, UCLA)
#28 Dallas — David Njoku (TE, Miami)
#29 Green Bay — Gareon Conley (CB, Ohio State)
#30 Pittsburgh — John Ross (WR, Washington)
#31 Atlanta — Adoree’ Jackson (CB, USC)
#32 New England — Tim Williams (EDGE, Alabama)

Three possible defensive back options for later (if no DB at #26):

Rasul Douglas (CB, West Virginia)
Ahkello Witherspoon (CB, Colorado)
Shalom Luani (S, Washington State)
John Johnson (S, Boston College)


  1. Kenny Sloth

    Brilliant work

  2. Ground_Hawk

    Thanks for the work Rob! I didn’t see Melifonwu on there. Where do you see him going, based on the information we have now?

    • Rob Staton

      Possible top-50 pick. High ceiling but working out what he is might be the tricky part. An intriguing player for sure and someone we need to continue to monitor.

      • Ground_Hawk

        I see him as more in the Kam role, which is obviously an unearned compliment, and I think he will struggle against the faster receivers in the league; much like Kam himself. I appreciate his punishing style though, and think it will help make a mark in the NFL.

      • Ground_Hawk

        I went back and watched that clip you posted the other day with Obi going up against a receiver, looked up the receiver, and found that he was Evan Engram. Quite the match-up.

      • Attyla the Hawk

        Wonder if he’s not more the kind of player that Brandon Browner was supposed to be for us this year?

        Seemed to stand out pretty well in practice of what I could see.

  3. Greg Haugsven

    A linebacker would work for me as long as he could play Sam and Leo. Wouldn’t just want a LB only.

    • Greg Haugsven

      At 26 that is.

      • Volume12

        I could see Seattle going for a Jarrad Davis, but I think your right. Probably more of a SAM/LEO even if he rushes from a 2 point stance. They do need some depth at off-ball LB though.

        But, there’s always a Mike Morgan late into the draft and whatnot. It would be smart to tap into this EDGE class. If the guys they like at that position are gone, it wouldn’t be a bad idea to grab a Jarrad Davis or Anthony Walker, Jr for example.

  4. Jorel

    No baby?!

    • Rob Staton

      Four days overdue now

      • Greg Haugsven

        My wife was 14 days overdue and that was super fun for me. Hope for your wife’s sake and yours that baby comes soon 🙂

      • The Hawk is Howling

        My Love and thought’s are with you Rob, must be a very stressful dealing with that. I’m sure writing us great articles helps keep your mind of of it just a wee bit. It’s going to be okay M8! Soon your daughter wlll be born into this World Healthy and Beautiful. Much Love to you and your Family Rob Staton!

      • Attyla the Hawk

        Both my sons had to be evicted at 41 weeks. Hang tough Rob!

  5. HawkFan907

    Rob, how do you feel about Malik McDowell? He has great size and a great motor. I feel like he has a ceiling of Calais Campbell if he packs on some more weight. It will be interesting to see how he performs at the combine.

    • Rob Staton

      I’m not sold on the motor. Seemed to disappear immediately as soon as MSU’s season began to go south.

  6. rowlandice

    I wouldn’t be surprised in the least if the Hawks went all defense with their top 3 picks. The next pick (3rd round comp) after that will be for depth at some position on offense, like the OL.

    • Rob Staton

      If they don’t go OL in round one, it seems possible this could be a defense-centric draft.

      • Greg Haugsven

        If they could get a tackle in free agency such as Reiff or Wagner I could for surely see all D the first 2 days.

        • Goldfishwrestler

          I could really see, giving one of these guys are nice contract. Going BPA on defense in rounds 1 and 2, if we have a 2nd. And then taking a guy like Chad Wheeler in the 3rd. Wheeler is a stud, very good as a pass protecter, athletic/nasty in the run game. Had some issues with mental health in his early part of college, and had some injury issues. He should test well, so remains to be seen, what round he ends up in.

  7. Bertelli

    Hi Rob – great post as usual. Sorry if this is off-topic, but any thoughts about a trade-up for Fournette? I know it would be a tall order and may not fit our current needs, but man, the guy’s tape is over the top. Seems like he could be an instant game-changer for the Hawks and I just can’t get him out of my head. I suppose with the impending sanctions coming for the Sherman bungle, we probably don’t have the leverage to do it, but wanted to know what you thought about it and what it might take to move up and get him? Thanks.

    • Rob Staton

      I love Fournette, but I think the team has a lot of needs and spending two R1’s plus a lot of change might be a bit rich given how the season ended for Seattle.

      • Greg Haugsven

        I just don’t want Fournette going to the Panthers. Jets have to step up at 6 or the Jags at 4 and take him.

        • Ground_Hawk

          I like Fournette to the Jaguars. He can just beat defenses up, and with pro WRs around him picking up slack he will adjust nicely.

  8. WALL UP

    Jarrad Davis @ 26, or trade dn to 35 for him?

    • WALL UP

      He just might reunite with Neal @ ATL though. That could be scary.

  9. Ishmael

    Fantastic work Rob, hope all is well with the baby!

    Notice you don’t have Budda in there anywhere. Have you cooled on him for the Hawks somewhat? I still think I like what he could bring in a big nickel look. Having him and Earl in the backfield with Kam roving the underneath zones…. Wouldn’t be surprised if Atlanta snapped him up, he’d be a great get for them.

    • Rob Staton

      Budda is #19 to Tampa Bay

      • Ishmael

        I… Am going to pretend I knew that and was just testing you. Sorry man.

        This is such an exciting draft, so many players I dig. I’ll be filthy if we do lose that second because of Carroll.

      • GerryG

        No mention of K King though, including the DBs for later in the draft. Assuming he is gone by the 2nd rd pick?

        • Rob Staton

          Yep, if they even have a R2.

          • GerryG

            Im not going to remain very composed if they lose that pick…

  10. Volume12

    I’ll say it again. Love Tyus Bowser. What an athlete! Was also on the Houston Bball team his 1st year or two.

    His stat-line or production remind me of Frank Clark coming out. Didn’t play a full season, both athletic as can be, both posted great #’s. 12 TFL, 8 QB sacks, and 9 QB hurries.

    Some teams might not like the fact he got into a fight with a teammate and Bowser had a broken orbital bone, but other teams like Seattle? I think they like that. Shows the passion and that they have some junkyard dog in the them. Perhaps another aspect that resemble Clark?

    He looks like a Seahawk with that frame of his.

    • CHawk Talker Eric

      I’ve been mentioning him for a couple of weeks now. Nice to see someone agree with me.

  11. Bertelli

    Thanks, Rob. Two R1’s plus change does seem a steep price for Fournette with all of our other needs, but I still can’t get the thought out of my head of him being the next Elliott and turning the league upside down. Probably won’t happen, but I guess I can dream about it. Might be worth giving up this year’s and next year’s R1’s to get him if the extra change doesn’t involve our 2nd ( that we keep hopefully) and 3rd rounder’s, but that’s probably a tall order at this point. Any ideas on what it would take to move up to get him if he does slide down to maybe the 10th pick?

    • Rob Staton

      To move from #26 to #10 you’re probably looking at two #1’s, a second rounder and maybe a little more. Big jump.

      • Bertelli

        Thanks, Rob for your feedback. It is a huge jump,and I’m pretty sure it won’t happen, but I think with a somewhat “win now” philosophy they should try to get the #1 pick (IMO) for whatever it takes. I like hawks22 plan, anything where we can keep our 2nd & 3rd picks this year and give up future picks that are most likely lower picks if we continue to be good. Imagine getting Fournette,, plus two solid picks that you’ve listed. We’d be loaded! Nothing against Rawls, but I think Fournette would be an instant impact type of player.

    • Nem Beselek

      We need a line to run behind, not just a better running back. Great O-lines make average running backs look good, and good running backs look great.

    • Hawks22Fun

      I was looking into this and using the Julio Jones trade for a starting point:

      Falcons went from 27 to 6!!! Gave up a R2-59, R4-124 in 2011 Draft…

      Then also the 1st and 4th Rounders in 2012…

      Seattle would start at 26…I feel that the Panthers at 8 would take Fournette… So we would have to at least be before them…

      Perhaps Los Angeles Chargers at 7 would trade…New Town, New Era, maybe they want draft capital…

      I would trade up to 7 for Fournette with our 2017 -1st and 3rd COMP, and next years 1st and 3rd… So it would be 4 picks for one Player instead of 5 like for Julio Jones… Two 3rd’s make up for the one less pick…

      Would LA Chargers go for that? Probably not…

      Just an idea…would you make this trade??

      • pqlqi

        No way. This is a very deep draft. I’d much rather trade down from the 1st round into the mid 2nd and pick up extra 3th and 6th round picks each year. For the 4 draft picks you propose giving up, you can have Fournette or trade down to get 2 2nd, 4 3rd, and 2 6th round picks. In this draft, you will get at least 4 solid contributors (during their time with the team) and likely 1 or 2 ten-year starters.

  12. AlaskaHawk

    I’m going to give you some good news and tell you that Reddick will be available at #26. Why – because he is a tweener that doesn’t fit into the linebacker or secondary category. Now you and I know that he is a good tackler, has good agility and is disruptive. Everything you could want in that special secondary category. But other teams will downgrade him for being too small to make it in the pros at linebacker. So just sit back and wait for him to fall into the Seahawks lap.

    • Rob Staton

      Ryan Shazier — #15 overall pick to Pittsburgh.

      Reddick is not a Tweener.

      • Volume12

        Say he was a tweener. It’s not necessarily a bad thing. If a guy was labeled as such not even 10 years ago, it was a death blow. Not anymore. At least for teams that want to be multiple and realize the value.

      • Cameron

        Agree 100%. Not only is Reddick not a tweener, but he’s scheme transcendent. He can play 4-3, 3-4. He could play exclusively edge or regular old linebacker.

        • Greg Haugsven

          There really isn’t any tweeners these days. It’s all about the speed. If your fast you’ll find your way on the field.

  13. WALL UP

    I hesitate to say this, but judges from their bigger/stronger emphasis by drafting Ifedi in the 1st Rd, they may double dip with C-Rob @ 26 if available as Rob’s mock indicates.

    It did surprise me with that pick of Ifedi, which I thought was a little high. I won’t this time if Cam is their pick. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Wj0lBw9LyA8

    • WALL UP

      ‘Judging’ is what most like to do. He seems to fit their prototype for RT/LT.

      • BobbyK

        I have been wondering that the past few days with Cam. I think we’ll know much more after they make the decision with Gilliam. Will he get the Alvin Bailey treatment? Or will they sign him to a 1-year deal before he hits FA? Gilliam was okay in ’15 and the knee injury/surgery really seemed to hurt him this past season. He’s healthy now or will be headed into camp. If they offer Gilliam the 1-year deal, I don’t see them drafting OL in the first round. They seem intent with Fant at LT and then Gilliam would be the RT for ’17 (maybe Rees takes over at RT in ’18?). They won’t draft a player at #26 who may not start. If Gilliam gets the Bailey treatment – then I think it becomes much more likely they draft a tackle at #26 (provided they hadn’t done anything in FA or via trade) such as Cam Robinson.

        • WALL UP

          His benching was not a ringing endorsement of him retaining that starting spot. They did note that they need to shore up the tackle spots. If Bolles were available, I’m sure they would pick him as well, regardless of Gilliam’s status.

      • WALL UP

        The Combine should be telling.

      • Aaron

        Cam Robinson looks like a slightly more polished version of James Carpenter. I wouldn’t be surprised if they snag him at 26 if they don’t get a FA RT. Robinson is not athletic enough for LT in the NFL imo. He would be a mauler type at RT. I don’t want to see Gilliam and his finesse style at RT ever again. Put him at LT competition or let him leave.

        • CharlieTheUnicorn

          I think they could move Gilliam back to TE….. if push came to shove.

    • Rob Staton

      Robinson is big but will show at the combine he lacks Ifedi’s supreme physical profile. Ifedi was the Hulk at the combine.

      • WALL UP

        Hopefully Ifedi will utilize, to the full, his physical capabilities on a consistent basis next year. You’re right. Cam is lacking the physical profile as Ifedi displayed at the combine. Cam is a more natural coordinated player that could play RT for them. Those two on the right side would be imposing for the run game.

  14. C-Dog

    Still feels like on paper corner feels like the biggest need, but I also felt like linebacker was a razor thin area all last season. The lack of a Bruce Irvin presence was felt. I’d be down for them taking an LB early if a special talent was there, and they can still grab a good corner later down the line.

    • BobbyK

      So important they don’t lose that 2nd round pick. Will really limit them if they do.

      • CharlieTheUnicorn

        Gut feeling: if they lose the 2nd, then they will likely trade back from #26, to try to get more 2nd/3rd and 4th round picks.

        • Hawktalker


        • Cameron

          if you look at the late 3rd round of most mock drafts – there’s a ton of talent and value in that range. I would love to trade back into the 2nd and draft twice in the 2nd and three times in the 3rd.

        • WALL UP

          I think not a 2nd, based upon the latest infraction with Bell’s injury nondisclosure. If anything, perhaps their 3rd. I think just a fine.

        • RWIII

          Hopefully the Hawks can trade down and collect more draft pics

        • Nem Beselek

          There is also the financial cost of the option year that goes with a first round pick. Every year that we trade out of the first round means another year that the FO doesn’t have to deal with that, and subsequently more money that we can put elsewhere if we so want. The possibility of losing an even higher pick this year makes trading down even more likely.

    • Naks

      I’m still intrigued with jean batiste, seisay and Campbell year 2 to compete as a starter. They have been in the system for 2-3 years now and should have the footwork down. If they have improved then early round corner becomes less of a need.

      • Naks

        I mean Elliot, not campbell

        • Hawks22Fun

          But wouldn’t it be nice to have finally a SOLID R1 CB!

          If they get one in FA or the draft, then the defense becomes truly ELITE again… Quinton Jefferson will get to play next year and thos guys you mention then become great DEPTH…which we lacked this year in the back end…

          I would love me some Sidney Jones or Kevin King in the draft,
          or Stephon Gilmore or Trumaine Johnson in FA…

          Just sign an ACTUALLY GOOD CB…no more Cary Williams/Sowell/Webb trash pile junk…

          • Naks

            I think a 1st round cb won’t start right away either. It will take him time to get the technique down. He will need to get the footwork and scheme down. Almost nobody starts right away in their system (in the secondary).

  15. CharlieTheUnicorn

    RT, 3rd LB, back-up S/CB, RB depth, TE depth and DT are consensus weaknesses on the Seahawks team. As long as you can find a player to hit each one of these position groups, you most likely have figured out the Seahawks draft. Where is the value for each position group…….

    I just don’t think they go OL with the 1st pick.. not the right value imo. There will be some nice guards at 26, but not a guy who is a surefire RT fit. Guard play was not a weakness of the Seahawks, it was the tackle play… thus onto the next position groups…. DT feels like a second round pick to me, since there is adequate depth to find a very good player in round 2. TE/WR/P are all more or less luxury picks, so I can’t see any of these before day 3.

    Thus, I keep coming back to the LB/SS types at #26…. there are a nice selection of choices to pick from… some good value you might say. Rob mentioned a few guys, but there are probably 15 guys who could potentially be a nice fit at #26 out of the EDGE/LEO + LB/SS hybrid types in the draft. I would not have a problem with Seattle grabbing an impact depth type of player for 2017 and potential probowl 2018/2019 ceiling player.

  16. Hoberk Unce

    Rob, in your mock you have Gareon Conley going to Green Bay at #29 and Adoree’ Jackson going to Atlanta at #31. What is it about those two that you think would make Seattle pass on them?

    • Cameron

      Size, arm length, etc. Neither one particularly fits the mold of a Seahawk cornerback. I must admit I drool at the thought of having Adoree Jackson

    • Rob Staton

      This is a mock focusing on LB’s today

  17. Cameron

    Not going to lie I am pretty adamantly opposed to the idea of Jarrad Davis, or any other non pass rushing LB in the 1st and probably even the 2nd round. For me, Haasan Reddick’s appeal is largely tied up in his pass rushing ability.

    Are we not overthinking this? I believe Pete Carroll mentioned improving LB ‘depth’ in his presser. Correct me if I am wrong. ‘Depth’ is a pretty specific word. We don’t use 1st round picks for depth.

    Drafting a SAM only backer only is as wasteful as drafting a run stuffing DT early.

    • Greg Haugsven

      I agree Cam, I said the same thing earlier up in the comments.

    • Rob Staton

      1. It’s January. We can’t talk about the same thing every day, with the same mock.

      2. He did say depth, but that doesn’t mean it has to be a backup. They started an orthodox LB in 2013 in Malcolm Smith. I think Bruce and the way they’ve treated the position in 2015-16 is making people think a little bit that positions has to be a SAM/LEO. It doesn’t — and you can get an impact player there.

      3. Carolina has Davis, Kuechly and Shaq. Davis has been compared to Shaq.

      • Greg Haugsven

        I think we understand that. The discussion can’t always be that we agree with the pick either. The reasons for these mocks is to debate them either in favor of the pick or against it. That’s all we were doing.

        • Rob Staton

          The question asked was ‘are we not overthinking this’?

          If we just want to talk about the same 3-4 players until the combine, then yes we’re overthinking it.

          If we want to cover bases, look at different prospects, learn about new players, discuss different players — then we aren’t overthinking it.

        • Cameron

          Yeah there’s a fair bit of dismissive sentiment with the suggestion which is warranted in my opinion. I appreciate the thought process of bringing a bunch of positions up for possibility but yeah, I would hate this pick.

          For me there are about 3 positions I would consider in the first round – Tackle, Corner and Edge (either pure or LB hybrid). I don’t mind looking at other positions but feel we should be keeping an eye on guys who might be available in the middle-late rounds.

          • Rob Staton

            “It’s worth debating different options. You might think a great cornerback or offensive tackle would be a better pick. What if that player isn’t available? That’s what we have to consider here.”

            • RealRhino2

              You hit the nail on the head, Rob. i may disagree about whether a LB or S is worth it in R1, but the fact is we may not have the best positional value guy just fall into our laps. In fact, of the simulated drafts I’ve run, they never quite match up unless it’s pie-in-the-sky fantasy stuff.

              That’s one of the reason I’d like to see us address OT in a significant way in FA so we aren’t in that bind and can go ahead and pick a “luxury” pick in R1.

            • GerryG

              If you draft a player that is an every down starter, and impact player, he is worthy of a RD1 pick, regardless of position.

      • EranUngar

        I wasn’t thrilled about piking “LB depth” in the 1st round until I took a deeper look at it. If they do find “their guy” at 26 (SAM/LEO) he is going to play Morgan’s snaps, Marsh’s snaps and some of Clark’s snaps when Clark spells Avrill/Bennett. If he is good enough in space to keep the base D on the field longer it should be enough to justify a first round pick.

        However, This is not a “need pick”, it is an upgrade pick. If the outstanding talents (Riddik, Cunnigham) are not their at 26, they do not need to get the best LB available…(DB is a need, pass rushing DT/DE/OT are other upgrade picks)

        • Rob Staton

          They might see it as a need though for reasons 1 and 2 at the start of the piece

    • Attyla the Hawk

      It’s completely worth exploring the possibility of going LB in this draft.

      Pete mentioning it in the post season presser should automatically put it on the radar.

      But also, we should consider, that Seattle likes to get value throughout their board. It’s entirely possible that we like the tier 2/3 OL better than the tier 2 LBs. Seattle can, and has taken guys out of need order due to availability of talent elsewhere in the draft.

      It’s why it’s important to not fall too in love with guys that we think we really need, or guys that we feel is a great fit. King might well be a great fit. But maybe we’re satisfied with letting him pass, and seeing if we can’t pick from several similar, if lesser prospects in R2 or R3.

      For all we know, Pete and John could pull a Richardson/Clark style pick out of the hat this year.

  18. Ukhawk

    I think Davis is solid but not special

    What about considering McKinley or Williams? IMO if they go in R1 as you predict they are worth the risk and I think both could play SAM (& LEO) better than all bar maybe Reddick. Do not believe the labrum injury is serious given it is said he played with it for 2 years. Opposite of Reddick it might be a blessing he skipped the senior bowl.

    • Rob Staton

      Takk is an EDGE for me. Williams ditto.

      This mock focused on LB’s.

      • Ukhawk

        Agreed, Takk is a prototype LEO which is basically a 3-4 rush LB.

        I think my preference would be Cunningham if we go SAM. My preference would be LEO as I think it is more valuable and Avril is >30. Having watched Reddick I felt he got a bit shut down vs Memphis and that it’s easier to look good in 1v1 in the drills. Look fwd to seeing him in the game to see if there is carryover. He could be the next Von Miller..

    • Totem_Hawk

      McKinley’s tape blows Davis away IMO…but be looks good

    • D-OZ

      In my opinion Davis is special. Has Seahawk written all over him…

  19. Hawk Eye

    interesting article on Fieldgulls regarding the injury report
    Sr David Chao, former Chargers MD said that if Sherman had a “significant” MCL injury, he could not play. So word of a doctor, vs PC, who has been known to protect his players…
    He also said every team has a lot of players in similar situations that do not get reported, most players are fighting something during the season.

    so I have a little hope….

    but this is also the NFL, so maybe my hope is misguided

    • Rob Staton

      In fairness, Russell Wilson played with a MCL injury.

      I think the issue is Pete’s language (use of ‘significant’ and ‘MCL’) in the interview. It’ll be a hammer blow if they lose a second round pick.

      • Hawk Eye

        he mentioned the severity of the injury being the critical factor.
        Russell played with a brace, Sherman did not
        did not miss game time, did miss the odd practice, but no more than 1 per week
        and the lack of a medical degree from Pete.

        maybe I am just grasping at straws here, but a drowning man will grab for a straw.

        to me, the bigger issue is the unholy (and unspoken) alliance the NFL has with Vegas.
        NFL is $18-20 Billion/yr in revenues
        Gambling on NFL is estimated at $92 billion/yr.
        So if we go by the “follow the money” rule, we know who rules

      • CharlieTheUnicorn

        Rob, do you think there might be another overhaul of reporting of injuries on the injury reports? They did away with Probable….. could they further modify it in the near future? Pretty much every national pundent has chimed in saying many many many teams do similar things to what Seattle, Pittsburgh and others are being accused of … and what is the difference between not reporting and having 18 guys on it like the Patriots have been known to do in the past?

        • Rob Staton

          I think some tweaks are inevitable now for sure

          • Attyla the Hawk

            It’s also important to remember the change in reporting injuries this year (loss of Probable designation). I’d be surprised if a lot of teams were similarly clouded in their understanding of the rules.

            They’ll tweak it more. And be able to make case related clarifications.

            A different take I’ve been arguing:

            The NFL wants to provide accurate injury reporting. Presumably for the integrity of the game and public (words from their policy). But really it’s for betting lines. If they come down too hard, every team in the league will end up duplicating Belichick. Every player with any kind of malady will be Questionable. In essence killing the very result the NFL is seeking to achieve.

            So in the end, I expect there to be zero penalty. The league is going to understand they can’t mete out punishment with a sledgehammer and provide the necessary value these injury reports are supposed to give. Teams will over report grossly if any team loses any kind of draft pick.

            The punishment has a very clear and unmistakable effect on NFL profits. And that is what will drive whatever the NFL decides. Expect a minimal fine and some stronger clarification.

  20. RealRhino2

    BTW, I know we are talking LBs, but has anybody who knows WRs studied Juju Smith-Schuster? All I’ve heard, I wasn’t supposed to like him, but I watched the Arizona film on draftbreakdown and I really liked him. Bigger and more physical than I thought; got kind of an Anquan Boldin vibe from him.

    Any thoughts to trying to sneak him in to our 2nd pick while we are out collecting all these OL, DBs and LBs?

    • pqlqi

      My ideal draft is trading down into the early-mid 2nd to add a 4th and 6th, then drafting Juju or Jarrad Davis with that 2nd.

    • Misfit74

      I like Ju Ju, but early talk is he’s not very good at getting separation. I have to study him more. He was a near lock first rounder just a few months ago…

  21. Hawk Eye

    LB or CB, or OT.
    I think what is critical is that the Hawks get a couple of impact playmakers in this draft.
    OT is not a “playmaker” position, but a good one allows the rb or qb to make plays. I just have doubts that the o line needs more youth, especially at pick 26. I think a defensive player at that pick can make an immediate impact.
    A fast LB, a speedy cb with the first 2 picks can make the defense dangerous again.
    Also not going to argue with a penetrating 3Tech, or “Budda” type safety/nickel.
    But speed, speed and then more speed. I want to see the Hawks fly again on D, like 2013, or close to that.

    • RealRhino2

      Just ran a “no OL” simulation using draftscout’s rankings, seeing what *could* happen if we went with an LB early:

      1: Reddick
      2. Garreon Conley/Marcus Williams
      3. Rasul Douglas
      4. Samaje Perrine/Jaleel Johnson/Montravius Adams/whatever.

      Anyway, just some examples.

      • Coleslaw

        I really like Rasul. If we got him somewhere in the third I think it would be tremendous value, especially down the line. If he tests even ok he’ll be on Seattle’s radar cause of his size

    • Del tre

      I think the dream offseason for the defense would be picking up Baker and Douglas in the draft then Campbell in the offseason, the Hawks would be back to terrorizing opposing offenses

  22. WALL UP

    Rob, any thoughts of Jimmie Gilbert as an OLB late pick if those featured were not available?

    • Rob Staton

      Definite option.

  23. Coleslaw

    I agree completely, Rob. Backtracking a couple days I don’t think Obi would be a good corner. At least not in press coverage. He does look stiff. He hid it well when he got hands on the receiver and rerouted him but I can only imagine a guy like AB or Odell lined up on him. They would win with get off easily and feast.

    • CharlieTheUnicorn

      I would not think of him as a pure CB, but more a SS/CB type that can play in the middle of the defense against TEs and big slot WRs. I don’t think he would be playing outside on and island, but you have to admit he has intriguing size and potential athleticism. He would sure fit into their “type” of player they draft.

      • Volume12

        As we discussed, and Charlie says, he’d be a matchup chess piece. Yes, he’s a bit of a project, but not that much.

        Of course his hips aren’t the most fluid. He’s a 6’4, 220 lbs DB. Most big corners are the same way. That’s why they can get away with not having deep speed. You want those guys to get up into the receivers.

    • D-OZ

      Obi is not that stiff. Think of him as a BB type who can play the safety position better.

      • D-OZ

        Mayock liked his hip’s.

      • Coleslaw

        Watch that snap Rob posted. It takes him like 7 steps to turn around.

  24. Schuemansky

    Rob, great job once again looking at Out choices at LB.
    Your draft seems like ‘worst case’ though with all our loved ones gone at 26😜!
    Maybe you should have stated the possibility of trading back 10 to 15 spots to get Bowser or Davis.
    I guess some commentators just weren’t convinced at 26, as was I.

  25. Robertlas vegas

    HELLO Rob once again a great article and I have a quick question for you I just read Teddy Bridgewater might miss next season if you are a Minnesota Vikings fan can you live with Sam Bradford for another year or do you want to trade back in the first round for a QB

    • Rob Staton

      I think you have to live with Bradford after trading a R1 pick for him

      • GerryG

        Bradford was ok too, especially for when they acquire him. If the team had a running game, they probably make the playoffs.

        • Misfit74

          Bradford set the record for completion percentage in a season with one of the worst running games, offensive lines, and a largely uninspiring WR corps. I’d be happy enough as a Vikings fan with Bradford.

  26. EranUngar

    Drafting an “immediate impact” player in the 1st round is tricky. If you look at the Seahawks history since 2011 (when we did not have a top 15 pick), There is only one player who had immediate impact from game 1 – Bobby Wagner at LB.

    Sherman and Kam did not start until the starters ahead of them were injured. Earl took a full season (in cover 2) to become the terror he is. Irvin was not a starter. RW’s first half of his rookie season was pretty shaky. Britt, Ifedi, Carp barely survived it like most OL rookies. Reed lost most his starts to McD and even Clark took a year to become effective.

    As much as we are looking for those immediate impact players, we need to consider that the impact is not likely to be immediate when you pick outside the top 20.

    In a funny way, I can see how someone like Riddik will have an immediate impact while a DB will need time to learn the Seahawk’s way and adjust to NFL quality WRs.

    • Volume12

      Any rookie that plays on defense is probably only going to play 60%-70%.

      • Volume12

        Opps. Hit the comment too soon.

        Which isn’t an awful thing. Fans are too quick judge rookies. We all do it. Not everyone is going to reach their potential or ceiling in year one as you point out.

        • EranUngar


          The most likely “immediate impact” on day 1 will be Ifedi, Fant, Reed…(the big jump from year one to year two), continuity effect on the OL, A healthy training camp for Rawl+C.J.+RW+Graham+Lokett+PRich ready to start together on week 1.

    • Rob Staton

      Carp, Bruce, Russ, Britt, Clark, Lockett, Ifedi, Reed all started early and contributed. Impact doesn’t have to mean pro bowl.

      • EranUngar

        Yes, they certainly contributed, but when they started as rookies they had a much lower positive impact compared with what some of them had later on. It just takes time for talented college player to become impact players at the NFL level.

        They are crucial for the future of the team but their added value is not always on display in their first year.

        • Rob Staton

          Bruce Irvin had eight sacks as a rookie — a career high.

          Russell Wilson equalled a NFL record for passing TD’s by a rookie (Peyton Manning).

          Frank Clark worked his way into a nice rotational role.

          Bobby Wagner was superb as a rookie.

          Tyler Lockett was superb as a rookie.


  27. Volume12

    Dude in the top right corner is a WR. A WR! One of the best this year too. Looks like Carl Lawson.


  28. John Mclaughlin

    Hi Rob,

    Great article! I know Jabrill Peppers is gone in this mock. If he does fall to 26, do you think Seattle would consider taking him? He seems like a pretty versatile playmaker.

    • Rob Staton

      I would imagine they’d certainly consider him.

  29. John_s

    Great vid on working on the kick step at the senior bowl


    • John_s

      bigplayfootballThe “kick-step” has become the bread and butter technique for CBs around the @NFL after coaches watched Pete Carroll’s @seahawks “Legion of Boom” strangle WRs on the perimeter. I originally learned the technique from Pro Bowl CB James Hasty during my time with the @chiefs in the mid-1990s (Carroll coached Hasty with the @nyjets ). At the Senior Bowl, I had a chance to watch @clevelandbrowns DB coach DeWayne Walker teach the technique to South’s defensive backs.. Coaching Points:
      1. Balance stance at the line (keep hands up)
      2. Take a 6-inch lateral step with outside foot at first sign of movement
      3. Step and replace to the side of the replace.
      4. Use an “off-hand” jam (hand opposite the release. Aim for the nearest number on chest)
      4. Next step and replace should be at a 45-degree angle (don’t chase WR on wide release. Take a cut off angle)
      5. Maintain a “top down” position (Stay on upfield shoulder to take away deep route and squeeze WR to the sideline or funnel WR to your help on an inside release in Cover 1)
      6. Finish

  30. Titus

    Great work as always Rob,
    this article got me thinking about last year and when they brought in Brandon Browner to be the 3rd LB. Maybe they didn’t like their choices then and now they have the opportunity to upgrade. Im crossing my fingers that Hassan Reddick falls to Hawks.

  31. Trevor

    Now that the Senior Bowl Practices are in the book can’t wait till the combine.

    There were a some big surprises at the Senior Bowl to the upside but a lot of disappointing results either measurement wise or from guys play during practice. Some guys I really liked can be crossed off the list I think like Cam Sutton (arm length), Corn Elder (arm length), Adam Bisonwatay (Poor Play), Forrest Lamp ( T-Rex) etc.

    Here are my Top 15 Seahawks Prospects from the Senior Bowl (Listed by overall potential not potential for Hawks)

    #1 O.J. Howard/TE/Alabama: Howard is the perfect TE physically and depending on how he test at the combine could be the most complete TE prospect to come out in a long time. He has great size, blocks well, catches the ball and runs great routes. Really nothing not to like about this guy. If Eric Ebron is a top 10 pick then Howard should be a no brainer in top 20. If somehow someway he fell to the Hawks he would have to be a consideration despite TE not being a need. The idea of teaming Howard with Jimmy Graham and Vannett would give us the best TE group in the league including NE. Also love that he showed up and competed despite being #1 TE on the board.

    #2 Haason Reddick/LB/Temple: Rob has pretty much said it all about this guy already. He was the wow player on the field most days. Mayock and Jerimiah raved about him saying he had not lost a rep all week. He measured taller and bigger than many expected, which was huge for him and throughout the practices proved he has three down potential. Reddick was dominant in pass-rushing drills blitzing as a stand-up linebacker or coming out of a three-point stance. Even his coverage skills against RB and TE were great. The idea of teaming him with Wags and KJ could be something incredible with 3 versatile playmaking LBs who can play all 3 downs. Really hope there is a way we can somehow get him at 26 but looks less likely by the day.

    #3 Dan Feeney/OL/Indiana: I have been a big Feeney fan since Rob first mentioned him last year. This year he had some injuries and played out of position. IMO he was easily the best OL player at the Senior Bowl as after a couple of bad reps day #1 he went out and dominated the entire balance of the week man handling just about everyone he faced at guard and center, Feeney showed great power, intensity and did not give up an inch to opponents. As Rob pointed out also seemed like a really leader on the field and players gravitated to him. This is exactly the type of guy we need on our OL! Solid, technically sound and a competitive leader who you know will improve everyone around him. If Bolles is gone this is the only other lineman I would want the Hawks to take in the top 50 picks. Really hope they consider Ifedi at RT. The could likely trade back and get Feeney early in Rd #2.

    #4 Obi Melifonwu / DB / UCONN: Another guy Rob was on very early who popped this week. He has already been covered in detail but wow his potential is off the charts. Can play anywhere in the back end. I was really surprised with his ball skills as well. If Hawks want him they likely have to take him at 26 as he seems like the type of guy the Pats would love as he can be used in so many spots. If we go DB in RD #1 my favorites are Sidney Jones, Kevin King, Obi and Adoree Jackson.

    #5 Montravius Adams/DT/Auburn: Before the Senior Bowl I thought Adams was way over rated with spotty tape and inconsistent motor. But wow at the Senior Bowl he was completely dominant every day this week and looked like a man amongst boys every day with little drop off in effort or productivity. He was unstoppable and collapsed the pocket on every rep I saw him play. He does not have great length like say a Chris Jones from last years draft but based on his play here alone he has to be a 1st round pick. Major question though is why is this guys tape so average. Seeing him collapse the pocket like he does makes me think about how much he could provide our DL in that regard as it is something we sorely miss.

    #6 Cooper Kupp/WR/Eastern Washington: I have no illusions that we will or should take a WR early but no player except Reddick impressed me more this week. This guy is just so smooth. Great getting off the line with solid foot work, runs NFL quality routes and catches everything with his hands. He is my third favourite WR in this draft class behind only Corey Davis and Mike Williams. Someone is going to get a steal on Day #2 with this guy.

    #7Evan Engram/TE/Mississippi: Engram may not be a physical freak like OJ Howard but he performed just as well from what I saw. He was strong and dominant in blocking drills which was a huge surprise for me to see and a major plus for him in front of the scouts. He got quick releases off the line, ran solid routes and caught everything. Seemed to be great running the seam and made several nice catches deep down the middle of the field. Rob talked about him early and I can see why. If he tests OK at combine he could be an early 2nd round guy and contribute really early.

    #8 Rasul Douglas/DB/West Virginia: Douglas was one of the only guys with the length the Hawks look for at CB. He struggled a bit in Day #1 IMO but after that was the best corner on the field IMO, showing good movement ability and ball skills. His closing speed was excellent and led to multiple pass breakups in th e scrimmage. He even looks like a Hawks CB as he has a tendency to get a bit handsy / grabby. He is the only CB here I think they will consider in Day #1 and #2. If he gets to Rd #3 he would be a steal.

    #9 Daeshon Hall / Edge / Tex A&M: Hall was another guy who I had not seen much of during the year. But wow did he ever jump off the screen. He is the ideal size 6-5 /265 w/ 34 ½ inch arms. He is really raw but this kid has the chance to be special and I think he is going to blow up the combine as an ex basketball player. I see him rated as a day #3 guy but I don’t think there is any chance he gets out of Rd #3 and could go in the 2nd round with a good combine. This is a guy I would love to see us get with one of our 3rd round picks

    #10 Tyus Bowser / LB –Edge/ Houston: Bowser was a guy I had not even really heard of until this week. He was a weigh in warrior and just got better throughout the week. Another guy who is raw but wow he flashes. He is going to be another big riser and if we miss on Reddick he is definitely an option in Rd #2-3.

    #11 Tarell Basham/DE-OLB/Ohio: He was one of my sleeper guys going in and measured bigger / longer than I expected. He showed great burst and get off and was one of the best pass rushers on the field. They tried him at LB and he looked lost however so he is strictly a DL for now. The athleticism he displayed was outstanding as Basham was smooth, displayed a quick change of direction. Cant wait to see his 10yd split and 3 cone at combine. He is very raw still but he has the chance to be a legit NFL pass rusher IMO.

    #11Eddie Vanderdoes/DT/UCLA: Where has Vanderdoes been? He was my 2nd biggest surprise after Adams on the DL. He destroyed guys and dominated anyone who tired to block him. I could not believe what I was seeing he beat opponents with power, quickness and strength. While sometimes he got a little out of control he still seemed to play with proper technique, showed great intensity. Watching I could not help but think that is a guy we need on our DL!!! I don’t know if his medicals will check out but I loved this Eddie.

    #12 Taywan Taylor/WR/Western Kentucky: My favorite sleeper WR heading into Senior Bowl. He leaves the Senior Bowl just behind Kupp IMO. After Kupp he was the smoothest receiver on the field this week, making catches at full speed short, intermediate and deep. He has long 32 ½ inch arms, always catches with his hands and high points the ball as well as anyone. He is definitely going to be a day #2 guy if he can run OK at combine. He is the one WR in this draft that just seems like a Seahawks WR. Ultra productive, leader, tough and chip on his shoulder. If he take a WR on day #2 I hope it is this guy.

    #13 Carroll Phillips/DE-OLB/Illinois: Phillips spent most of his college career at defensive end but during Senior Bowl practice switched to outside linebacker where he excelled in practice. He showed terrific speed, quickness and athleticism. As expected he was explosive rushing the passer , easily changed direction and was fast pursuing the action laterally. But surprisingly he also did a solid job dropping off the line of scrimmage in coverage drills and covered a lot of area. Either Reddick, Phillips or Bowser would be a great addition to the LB group.

    #14 Taylor Morton / OL / Western Mich: Morton is a grown man at 330lbs. He is not a LT but will be a great LG in the league for a long time IMO. He dominated when switching to guard and has nice feet. He also seems to have an edge. If we take an OL on Day #2 he makes a ton of sense as a swing guy who is better at G but could play RT if needed.

    #15 Karem Hunt / RB / Toledo: Hunt weighed in 20lbs lighter than his playing weight but was one of the most complete backs of the week and looked like the total package. He showed a quick burst as he picked his way on the inside through the running lanes but also had the ability to turn the corner. He was outstanding catching the ball and Hunt also looked good in blocking drills and was the only guy I saw block Reddick. Still have to see how he runs at the combine but if we take an RB in Rd #5 this guy might be worth a look.

  32. Wall Up

    Seahawks have spoken with a few players @ this past week’s senior bowl practices. OT Garcia and DT Watkins are the two mentioned. Not sure who else has peaked their interest. Both them would be a great haul for there first two selections.

  33. Trevor

    My all Senior Bowl Seahawks Mock to add youth and speed at all 3 levels of defense. I would love Reddick in Rd #1 but think he goes in top 20.

    Rd #1 Obi Melifonwu (DB) UCONN
    Rd#2 Daeshon Hall (DL) Tex A&M
    Rd#3 Tyus Bowser (LB) Houston
    Rd#3 Comp Eddie Vanderdoes (DT) UCLA
    Rd#5 Comp Isaac Asiata (OL) Utah
    Rd#6 Karem Hunt (RB) Toledo
    Rd#6 Michael Roberts (TE) Toledo
    Rd#7 marquis White (DB) FSU

  34. Sea Mode

    Good to consider the option of LB early and to know there should be a few consolation prizes later on too.

    I think we all know they will add at least one CB. Whether it is a high pick or not will depend on other needs, whether they fall in love with any prospects, and how the board falls.

    Also wonder how much they still like DeAndre Elliott’s chances, which could mean CB might wait until the mid rounds. Hopefully he takes a big jump in year two.

    And I didn’t even notice Demetrius McCray, who we just added a couple weeks ago, has even freakier arm length than BMax! 33 7/8″ arm at 6’1″!

  35. pqlqi

    I really like Jarrad Davis is the mid 2nd round right around where Bobby was drafted. It’d give us 3 starting caliber ILBs, allowing a rotation to get Wagner and Wright rest in the course of the game and a ton of flexibility with 3LB sets re: run/pass/blitz options. Davis moves around the field a lot like Wagner and Wright – he almost always stays clear of blockers to make the tackle in the gap, he aggressively fills his gap to force the play out of his gap, and he drops into coverage very comfortably. I think he’s a sneaky good player with fantastic discipline. He wasn’t asked to rush the passer much in college, so he doesn’t have numbers or tape to show it, but his game tape shows all the skills and awareness to have a 3 contract NFL career.

    Reddick definitely has more athletic flash plays (at least in part because he’s an EDGE rather than ILB), but I do have a few concerns. He does’t fit the SAM/LEO body type that PC described when drafting Irvin (neither do Mike Morgan or KPL – they are more WIL than SAM). He’s not particularly long. He rarely looks comfortable dropping into coverage. His best plays include a few too many where he leaves his assignment (abandoning the outside contain to shoot the B gap – in the NFL teams will destroy him for such mistakes). He didn’t dominate the talent at Memphis in the tape I watched. He plays too close to the line and gets up in his gap too quickly, getting washed out of run plays. He has enough plays where he completely loses the ball (a’la Aaron Curry) that it worries me he has intrinsically bad field vision/instinct. After typing and editing this, it occurs that Reddick is an awful lot like KPL. Athletic and explosive, not particularly polished at the things the Hawks will want him to do as a pro.

    • Rob Staton

      I think this is fair.

      Watching Davis, he’s clearly not the same athlete as Reddick or KPL. Yet his closing speed is incredible. He’s intense and impactful. He’s not going to be a 6-8 sack guy but you’ll be able to leave three LB’s on the field and feel confident doing so. You won’t need to be mixing as much into nickel. If they can get a big time interior rusher like Calais too — your four man rush is going to excel with a dynamic trio playing just behind. The current four man DL is keeping Wagner and Wright clean anyway so you’d expect Davis to make plays.

      I think it’s a shame Zach Cunningham will be gone because he’s like Davis but longer and more athletic. But I get the sense Davis will be a plug-in defender who will shine, add another tone-setter to the defense and regain some physical edge. If he runs a 4.5 that’s similar to Kuechly. Also worth noting, Kuechly’s tape/production wasn’t mind blowing at Boston College.

      It’d be interesting to see if they moved up in R2 (if they keep their pick) to get a LB if they go in a different direction in R1. It looks like there’s a big middle class from about 18-45.

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