Why the Seahawks need D-line help AND a quarterback

Could C.J. Stroud last to #5?

C.J. Stroud has become the key to the draft.

In the space of about two weeks he’s gone from betting favourite to be picked first overall to an unlikely selection at #2.

Adam Schefter doesn’t think the second quarterback will come off the board until #4. Michael Lombardi said at the weekend he thinks Chris Ballard and the Colts will rank Will Levis ahead of both Stroud and Anthony Richardson due to his greater readiness to start. Some betting markets are now ranking Levis as favourite to be the second QB selected. Chris Mortensen also recently said Levis wouldn’t get out of the top-five — I suspect because he thinks his floor is Indianapolis at #4.

It’s suddenly becoming very difficult to project where Stroud will go and therefore how the top-10 will shake out.

For example, if the Texans are not interested in Stroud at #2 and the Colts prefer Levis, that doesn’t really indicate a strong likelihood of anyone trading up. Indeed, as time goes on, it’s actually being said by people like Schefter that the Texans and Cardinals are going to have a hard time finding a deal.

Let’s say that’s the case. What then? Presumably Arizona goes defense. If Houston does the same and the Colts do take Levis, Stroud would be available at #5.

That would’ve been unthinkable a few weeks ago.

I wonder how fans feel about that prospect? There’s quite an aggressive, anti-QB sentiment among Seahawks fans — especially when it comes to Levis and Richardson. What about Stroud though? Typically seen as the first or second best quarterback in the class and capable of throwing with magnificent touch and accuracy, would even the most ardent QB-sceptics be against using the #5 pick to select him?

If one of the big knocks on Stroud is he needs to work out how to play outside of the Ohio State offense, learn how to make his own reads/adjustments and basically start from scratch — he would get that in Seattle, where there’s no pressure to start.

It would feel like a complete gift to the Seahawks and a truly worthwhile shot to take for the future of the franchise. Anyone who watched that Georgia game could see the magical potential Stroud has. Does he have plenty to work on? Absolutely. Yet it’s not often you get a chance to draft and develop a talent like this.

Personally I think it’d be a great position to be in, choosing between the upside of Stroud or the physical quality of Richardson to bring in and develop. I do think the Seahawks have taken a shine to Richardson in particular — but those thoughts were perhaps brewing when it was assumed Young and Stroud would be the top two picks.

There are also people who insist the Seahawks won’t draft a quarterback at #5. Lance Zierlein, for example, is fairly adamant about it whenever he’s asked. Michael Lombardi says he thinks they’ll take a defensive lineman. We’ve had Peter King’s report this week, noting most of the league expect Jalen Carter to be the fifth pick.

It wouldn’t surprise me if Zierlein’s adamance is warranted. I don’t think the quarterback pro-day visits were some elaborate smokescreen like some have suggested. You do your homework on all of these players. It is true, though, that the Seahawks haven’t done much to address their self-confessed biggest need of addressing the D-line. The Dre’Mont Jones signing was a shot in the arm but their current D-line talent and depth is a major worry.

I’m a little bit concerned that the Seahawks think they’re closer than they are. Bet MGM has them ranked 21st in their Super Bowl odds, level with the Carolina Panthers. People will point to the fact Seattle wasn’t fancied a year ago but fail to acknowledge they had one of the easiest schedules in the league and benefitted from the collapse of the Rams and Cardinals (four out of nine wins).

If the thought process is just add in some talented rookie defenders and bombs away, I think that’ll be incredibly short-sighted. This should be treated as the second year of a process, rather than anything akin to finishing touches. I believe those finishing touches are more likely to come in 12 months time.

For all the talk of ‘impact’ defensive linemen, we’ve seen with several players that it can take 2-3 years to reach your best performance. Travon Walker and Kayvon Thibodeaux weren’t game-wreckers last year and had 3.5 and four sacks respectively. It took Quinnen Williams a long time to adjust to the pro’s.

In Seattle they’ve tended to rotate in young defensive linemen rather than give them a lot of snaps. That might change for a top-five pick but it certainly didn’t for the #40 pick last year, with Boye Mafe losing snaps to Bruce Irvin despite near-identical PFF grades for their play.

I’m wary of #5 being spent on a Tyree Wilson type who doesn’t come flying out of the traps and/or never reaches top-level potential. Meanwhile, the coaches struggle to produce a coherent and consistent defense (as has been the case for a few years now). Meanwhile, Geno Smith plays more like he did in the second half of last season making a minimum cap hit of $31.2m next year a serious question mark.

What happens then? You neither have a great defense or a contracted quarterback on your roster, or a long-term future at that position.

This is why I think it’s incredibly likely the Seahawks will draft a quarterback, it’s just a question of when.

They do, 100%, need to improve their defense. Yet they can’t run the risk of Geno not being a long term option. His end to last season can’t be ignored. He had too many turnover-worthy plays, as noted by Hugh Millen:

Millen raised an interesting point on KJR on Friday. He pointed to a stat provided by PFF listing ‘turnover worthy plays’ by each quarterback. Smith had the second most in the NFL, just behind Josh Allen. Millen also pointed out that Allen had far more ‘explosive’ passing plays and a lot more rushing yards to compensate for his erraticism.

Building on the point, he then noted that when looking at the top-10 quarterbacks — on average 80.6% of their turnover worthy plays had resulted in actual turnovers. In comparison, Geno Smith saw only 48% of his turnover worthy plays actually result in an interception.

If he’d thrown the 80.6% average like the rest of the QB’s in the top-10, he would’ve had 25 picks. Even if he’d had a still well below average 65% — he would’ve led the league in turnovers.

If those turnover-worthy plays translate to real-world turnovers in 2023, it’s a problem. We all appreciate what Geno achieved last year and it was a real feel-good story. Yet it’s far too soon to declare him a bona fide long-term quarterback for this team. They know it too — which is why they have an ‘out’ on his contract next year.

If the Seahawks were forced to cut Smith to avoid his $31.2m salary in 2024, they would be faced with no viable quarterback option (short of re-signing Smith to a much smaller deal) and not having a top-five pick to do much about it. That would be a disaster that too many people are overlooking.

Thus, they need to draft someone who can realistically take over, if needed, in 2024 or 2025. Drew Lock isn’t that someone. He’s on a one-year backup contract. Clearly nobody else was offering him an opportunity to compete to start, or he wouldn’t be back in Seattle. If Smith plays all 17 games next year and simply doesn’t excel to warrant $31.2m, you’re not turning to Lock. Good luck selling that to the fanbase.

Neither can you bank on the next quarterback class providing the answer. Sometimes I think people just assume it’s easy to get the next big name being touted. There are only two ways to get them. Be bad enough to pick in the top-two or trade all of your stock for the next few years to move up (if you can even find a willing seller). Neither is appealing, especially when you already own a top-five pick this year.

A younger player with upside and potential is required as a longer term alternative to Smith. It’s just whether they spend the #5 pick on that role. I would 100% do it. I would rather invest more in a talented player than settle on a cheaper, lesser prospect. There’s no middle-class in this draft at quarterback. Anyone hoping for a mid-round or late-round flier, good luck with that. It’s basically a one-man option in Dorian Thompson-Robinson and I’m not convinced DTR, as much as I enjoyed watching him at UCLA, is a future starter in the league.

However, I can well imagine the Seahawks avoiding the quarterbacks at #5 in preference of taking a defender, yet still making sure they take a quarterback early.

It’s why I think there’s a very realistic possibility they go defense at #5 — irrespective of Stroud or Richardson being available — then take Hendon Hooker at the top of round two, or by trading back into the late first.

I would much prefer to take Stroud or Richardson (or Levis) and then add a defender in the 20’s if that’s the case. I appreciate Hooker has some appealing traits and excellent character — but that offense slays me every time. His highlights video is borderline farcical the number of times the commentator uses the words ‘wide open’ just as a throw is landing in the receiver’s hands.

Then there’s the age, the injury and I just don’t think he’s on the same level as the top-four. It’s not even that close for me. Hooker is akin to an Andy Dalton type and I would prefer to shoot for better than that.

I think it’s realistic though. I think they might do it. They need a young QB on this roster who is cheap, contracted for years and capable of developing to be a potential starter in 2024 or 2025 because there’s simply no guarantee you’ll want to pay Geno Smith $30m in either year.

They need an insurance plan. If they’re unwilling to make the #5 pick an insurance plan, it basically leaves Hooker.

So what do I think they’ll do?

I think they’ll be shaped by what happens between picks #1-4. I’ve thought for weeks that if Will Anderson lasts to #5 they’ll take him. In that situation, it increases the chances of them going in for Hooker — if available — later on. If Anderson is gone, I think they might pivot to a quarterback at #5 and then select a talented defender at #20 and/or #37.

This feels realistic. A couple of weeks ago many thought it possible the top-four could be all quarterbacks. Or, at the very least, three quarterbacks would go before Seattle’s pick. That made it viable Anderson could last. If that’s no longer the case, it seems logical they would at least consider the quarterbacks.

Of course many are just assuming the Seahawks will take Jalen Carter and that’s that. If they do, as I keep saying, I will own up to the fact I don’t think it will happen.

I was just thinking today, while reading a joint-mock draft between Mel Kiper and Todd McShay. You’re the Seahawks. You’ve drafted Carter. You’ve guaranteed him $30m the moment you select him. Then after mini-camp, you’re going to wave him off and say, ‘see you in training camp’.

How can you do that?

Only a year ago we highlighted how he identified conditioning as a priority last April, only to do nothing about it. As we saw at his pro-day and in the Ohio State and LSU games, his conditioning isn’t great. That’s probably an understatement. I’m going to guess he’s not been able to do much about that while travelling the country taking official visits over the last two weeks.

You need him in the gym during that mini-camp to training camp period. You need him watching his diet. Contrary to what people think, you can’t force him to stay in Seattle. You can’t force current or ex-players to babysit him. You can’t force him into the gym or to eat properly. He’ll be a free man, and rightly so, plus he’ll be newly minted thanks to the NFL contract that’s coming his way.

This is on top of the reported concerns over practise habits, how he takes to coaching, the pattern of mistakes made and the fact quotes like this, from anonymous scouts courtesy of Bob McGinn, don’t hint at a typical Pete Carroll player:

“Doesn’t play hard like (Devante) Wyatt. That dude gave it his all. Carter’s motor runs hot and cold. He’s disruptive, but not overly productive. He’s a worrier for me. A lot of these Georgia dudes aren’t as good individually as they were as a whole. Travon Walker. They all were overrated because of how dominant that D was.” Was a 5-star recruit from Warren Sapp’s hometown of Apopka, Fla. “Best player in the draft but he’s lazy,” a third scout said. “They put him on the treadmill damn near every day. He doesn’t love football, doesn’t love the weight room. Horrible family background. Not a leader. He’s phenomenally talented. He’s going to run like a deer. He’s the epitome of star or bust.”

And just like that, I’ve started talking about Jalen Carter again.

I think it’s unavoidable for another eight days while ever the talk of Seattle taking him is rife accompanied by the frustration that he is so talented and yet has the biggest list of concerns to consider I can ever recall.

That’s why I think some teams (Philadelphia) will salivate at taking the risk, knowing it’s a shot to nothing, while others (Arizona, Seattle, Las Vegas) are probably in a different place.

While most national mocks are pairing the Seahawks with Carter, Peter Schrager had them passing on him in his mock draft — where Seattle takes Anthony Richardson instead:

“The Seahawks love Geno Smith, and there’s no doubt he’s the man for 2023. But with two picks in the top 20, they can go with a quarterback here — after all, they surely don’t plan on picking in the top five again anytime soon. If another QB-needy team doesn’t leapfrog them, the ‘Hawks can secure a signal-caller for the future. Seattle has time to get Richardson in the room with coordinator Shane Waldron so that he can learn the offense.”

He also notes with Carter, who was taken sixth overall by the Lions:

“Elite player whose off-field/character questions could be a red flag for some teams.”

I appreciate the argument some people make that his talent keeps him in your mind because if it works out, the upside is incredible. I just think you have to be honest with yourself sometimes and be realistic. People say he’s Aaron Donald without realising Aaron Donald has an elite work-ethic and commitment to greatness. If Carter won’t be coached, won’t put the effort in and won’t work on his conditioning — if he essentially doesn’t love the game enough to be ‘pissed off for greatness’ — he’ll just be a wasted pick or someone who flashes from time to time. There are tons of fantastically talented players who never amount to anything because they aren’t willing to do what is common among all the greats — outwork your peers.

It’s why I think if Anderson is gone they’ll pivot to the QB’s at #5 then attack the defense with their nine remaining picks. If I’m totally wrong, and they are prepared to take Carter at #5, I’d probably put money on them targeting Hooker at some point.

I’ve never been against a defensive pick at #5. I know they have to improve their defense. We all do.

They still can’t go into next year without a long-term option at quarterback. They need someone in the background who can replace Geno Smith if needed. Otherwise they face a not unrealistic prospect of paying a quarterback $31.2m for average play, or having to part ways and having no contracted QB on the roster.

If they find themselves in that position next year, two years after the Russell Wilson trade, it would be a calamity. They wouldn’t be moving forward. They’d have a ton of question marks. Especially if the defense gets big investment and doesn’t reach a top level, which has to be a slight fear given the state of the defense since the LOB departed.

They need to invest in both areas — D-line and quarterback — to set this team up for the future. With 10 picks, that should be achievable.

They created the perfect baton-passing process with Geno’s contract. Now it’s time to capitalise on it.

If Anderson is off the board by #5 — but Stroud and Richardson are there — I personally hope they’re willing to go quarterback then defense at #20, #37 or both.

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  1. Zxvo3

    There’s just something that bothers me about saying “if Will Anderson isn’t there at 5, then they will pivot to QB”. I feel like with the QB position, you need to be 100% committed to drafting the one you want. It shouldn’t be a pivot as an alternative. But it seems like it might be the reality the Seahawks are facing.

    • Nick

      There’s a very real possibility tho that Anthony Richardson or CJ Stroud is Seattle’s #1 QB in this draft class. So even if Will Anderson was their highest player on the board, it would follow they would select one of those two if he was gone.

    • Rob Staton

      A fair point

      That might just be a poor choice of words on my behalf

    • Malanch

      It hit me weeks ago that, if the Seahawks take a quarterback up top, I’d feel better about them trading up to do it than just sticking and picking. It would hurt their remaining haul, but roster regeneration is a long-term process anyway, and the level of conviction that a trade-up signals would be quite persuasive.

      • Hawksorhiking?

        Doesn’t sound like we’ll need to trade up… hopefully

        • Tim

          I agree and the Seahawks are actually in a good place since the top 4QBs and Anderson seem to be good moves with great potential. The fan base would not have room to complain if the pick that went higher was more impactful long term. But woe if you pass on the star “that we could have had at #5!!!”

  2. geoff u

    I wouldn’t be surprised if the Cards picked Bijan Robinson to take a lot of the pressure off Kyler Murray. Anderson, Wilson, Carter ain’t gonna fix their defense but a great running back would get that offense humming.

    Anyway, the real smokescreen may very well be the Carter/Witherspoon meetings, so close to the draft, while staying far far away from the QBs. Also, we never met with Tyree Wilson, did we?

    • Lex

      I’m sure the Cards would love to grab Bijan (wow, wouldn’t we all) seems most likely that would take place after a trade down; a QB is the highest probability position to be drafted with that pick; perhaps limiting our options?! I’m enamored with the idea of Houston going with a D pick. The idea of the Hawks having multiple QB’s from this group to consider at #5 would be fantastic! The defensive line options from 20 – 38 are physically impressive. A bunch of players that are more physically explosive than Tyree Wilson, he doesn’t appear to fit the Seahawk profile for a 1st round pick.

  3. Jabroni-DC

    Just punched a 3 rounder.

    1. Young
    2. Richardson
    3. Anderson
    4. Stroud

    Seattle’s picks

    5. Will Levis QB Kentucky

    29. Adetomiwa Adebawore EDGE Northwestern

    37. Joe Tippmann OC Wisconsin

    52. Sam LaPorta TE Iowa

    71. Jonathan Mingo WR Ole Miss

    83. Zacch Pickens DT South Carolina

    If a defender gets taken at 2 or 3 my adrenaline is going straight to the moon for one of the Big 4 QBs.

  4. clbradley17


    4+ min. version of Mike Florio on Rich Eisen’s show following up on Schefter’s lead, in that the Panthers will take Young at 1, then probably 2 D players Anderson and Wilson.

    Then he goes on to say that Carter not only won’t get out of the top ten, but stay in the top 5. He says the betting markets have the Seahawks taking Carter at 5, and the draft is just a formality.

    Full interview – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DoTfARN95v0&t=379s

    • Glor

      I’ll take those 10:1 odds that it isn’t happening

  5. Dave

    This bit “ If the Seahawks were forced to cut Smith to avoid his $31.2m salary in 2024, they would be faced with no viable quarterback option (short of re-signing Smith to a much smaller deal) and not having a top-five pick to do much about it. That would be a disaster that too many people are overlooking.”


    It’s so obvious that I don’t understand why people are so adamant it won’t happen. There is a massive risk Geno isn’t it and there is a ton of evidence saying so, and half a season saying not.

    And it’s the only time they are likely to get a 5.

    The only reason they don’t pull the trigger IMO is they don’t like these QBs. It’s a realistic possibility. As noted they all have big flaws and risks.

    They could even like next year’s QBs more. But you are highly unlikely to get there except for the one thing you didn’t mention (which has risk still):

    Trade 5 away.

    Trade it for a 15 or similar. And get a 1 and 2 next year.

    Then, use your 2 2024 1s, one of your 2024 2s, and your 2025 1 to get first overall.

    I’m spitballing a little on value of course but you get the idea.

    I mean, if Anderson is gone and they don’t want one of these QBs (or whichever QB is left), there is no point having the 5.

    So get capital for it, and still draft twice in round 1.

    I still think they take Richardson or Stroud but I’m just saying this is another left field option:

    This year
    Take 2 mid round 1 players
    Take 2 round 2 players

    Next year

    Option 1: Draft all your rd 1 and rd 2 capital to get the QB of the future – having decided on Geno as well.

    Option 2: Draft another 2 rd 1 players and 2 rd 2 players next year.

    So in 2024 you end up with either:

    4 rd 1 draft picks and 4 rd 2 draft picks.


    2 rd 1 draft picks, 2 rd 2 draft picks and, say, Caleb Williams.

    • geoff u

      I know the likelihood is low, but I’ve long thought that would be my plan. In the NFL you either have a franchise QB or you’re looking for one. If they don’t see a franchise QB in this years class, or they aren’t there (and they failed at trading up to get one) trade down for as many firsts next year as you can get and try again.

      • BK26

        That would be a failed strategy. That is trying to be too smart. Enough of it. It’s been a failure for years. Every quarterback ever has had flaws. Next year’s crop already does. AND THEY DON’T HAVE TO DECLARE.

        Then what? No more getting cute, no more middling team, no more trying to play 3-d solitare while everyone else is playing checkers. It all hinges on this draft. At pick 5. That is the future of the team, that is Pete and John’s legacy.

        • BK26

          Geoff that wasn’t meant to be a reply to you, was supposed to be for Dave above.

          • Dave

            Maybe I wasn’t clear, but I don’t agree with this, I would rather take one of these QBs, since you have a good QB staring right at you.

            I am just saying IF, for whatever reason, PCJS are not keen on the risk these QBs present (none are flawless) then it might be better to trade as described to get capital to get 1 overall next year, rather than drafting someone not worth the 5 pick, like a Wilson, Carter or Witherspoon

            • Rob Staton

              This just isn’t realistic though Dave

              If the team picking first needs a QB, they aren’t trading out. Plan over.

              What if someone outbids you and makes a crazy offer?

              You can’t have a plan like this.

        • geoff u

          Ehh, not so fast, it would’ve been a great idea last year when the top QB was Cody Picket. And perhaps just why we got 2 firsts for this year. It’s almost as if this has been the plan all along…

    • Malanch

      “…Then, use your 2 2024 1s, one of your 2024 2s, and your 2025 1 to get first overall.”

      Who’s selling? If a team sucks successfully enough to lock up #1 overall, they most likely have a quarterback problem—and they will be sitting on the mountaintop with Caleb Williams all to themselves (assuming next year goes according to plan, which it might not).

      I appreciate you’re just trying to see the other side of things, but I think we can stamp out this foolhardy notion that quarterback woes can simply be remedied in “next year’s draft”. (I heard that last year, by the way, in reference to this year. Rinse, repeat.)

      • geoff u

        Well, the Bears sold this year, but I absolutely agree that would not be the norm. At least now there are four to muddy the waters, next year it’s mostly a top two?

        • Malanch

          Who knows. Currently, two guys are getting the most love at the top, but last year I kept hearing ‘Just wait till next year’s draft—it’s loaded with QBs.’ And it is, relatively, but once last year’s next year became this year, this year’s next year has me thinking the next next year is the year. Jesus, where’s no frickin’ clue’s Bulleitt—I need a shot.

          • Geoff u

            Oh I’d only do that if it was like last years class, where the top QB is a third rounder, then you absolutely get more firsts for the next year. Which is exactly what we did by the way! with the Russell Wilson trade. This is literally this plan coming to fruition and we’re even better off than imagined sitting at #5, with as the man says:

            “Well here we are. The number five pick and there’s legitimately four great prospects coming out at the quarterback spot. We may never have this opportunity again, so we’ve got to maximise it.”

            -Pete Carroll

            And people are selling me now that we’re going to waste it on a so-so defender?? Oh hell no.

      • Dave

        That’s definitely the risk but anyone who has a QB and wants to focus on building out the roster. They’ll have two firsts and two seconds in 2024 and two firsts in 2025.

        Let’s say Panthers flop again, but they’d just drafted Bryce Young. Or whoever drafts Richardson and red shirts him but end up with 1 overall – they may take it.

        And what’s the downside? Remember I’m assuming Seahawks pass on the QBs *anyway*. So if they don’t get a trade partner next year, they have a ton of stock to build the roster themselves.

        The question is, what’s better (if not drafting Anderson or a QB this year):

        2023 #5, 2023 #20, (say) 2024 #20


        2023 #15, 2023 #20, 2024 #15, 2024 # 20 and 2024 # 47

        I go the 2nd haul

        • Dave

          For the record, I think we should 100% for QB at 5 this year. My thought bubble was IF PCJS didn’t want the QB AND if Anderson wasn’t available, then I think trading out of 5 for a a haul we could trade up with next year would be the next best solution.

        • Dave

          Not to have this internal monolgue, but rereading this bit:

          The question is, what’s better (if not drafting Anderson or a QB this year):

          2023 #5, 2023 #20, (say) 2024 #20


          2023 #15, 2023 #20, 2024 #15, 2024 # 20 and 2024 # 47

          Can be broken down as:

          Would you trade #5 (assuming can’t / won’t be used on Anderson or a QB) for 2023 #15, 2024 #15 and 2024 #47 ON TOP of your 1st / 2nd round picks next year.

          So let’s do that flow chart again:

          Seahawks are up at 5. PCJS don’t want the QBs and Anderson is gone.

          1. Choose Wilson / Carter / Witherspoon
          2. Trade Back for a 2023 haul (#15, #47, #79, 2024 2nd)
          3. Trade Back for a 2024 haul (2023 #15, 2024 1st, 2024 2nd)

          I’m thinking Option 1 is the worst.

          2 and 3 are similar, BUT the big difference is Option 3 allows a chance to aim at 1st overall next year.

          Let’s take Option 3

          In 2024, go to 1st overall and offer: 2 2024 1sts, 2024 2nd, 2025 1st

          IF it works, take Caleb Williams, and still have a 2024 2nd left over. You basically gave up Tyree Wilson and your 2025 (hopefully late) 1st rounder for Caleb Williams.

          That’s a no brainer for me.

          IF it fails, then you end up with 2 2024 1sts, 2 2024 2nds, to go with 2023 #15, #20, #37 and #53.

          8 top 64 picks in 2 years.


          Again, to be clear, this is not my choice, I’m taking any of those top 4 QBs. And if not, I’m taking Anderson.

          I’m just saying, if PCJS don’t *like* these QBs, and ANderson is gone, this is definitely what they should then do

      • Brodie

        Exactly Malanch.

        Let’s just say it’s us that come in dead last this year. Geno turns into a pumpkin, the defense does its usual first few weeks of not looking like anyone went to training camp, but never gets better, we lose some close ones… whatever.

        Now we have zero confidence in Geno and the #1 pick. Let’s say that Caleb Williams is this ‘next great QB’ that everyone thinks is in ‘next years’ draft. Are we even remotely considering trading down to miss out on that QB for an extra 1st and a couple of 2nd’s? I doubt John is even answering the phone, assuming he still has his job.

  6. Glor

    8 days to go, just 8 days to go

  7. Kozzmo

    No, we don’t need a QB. Lets look at history, at USC, every Carrol QB was a #1 overall pick. Most didn’t make it in the NFL. Russell Wilson was a star, then he left, and he is not even a decent starter last year. Geno was a backup, he got the job, and suddenly he is a star. You see the pattern, every Carrol QB is a star, until they leave. If Geno gets hurt, then Drew Lock will be a star. It’s not the QB. Its the coach. So why waste precious recourses on a name? Its results than win games, ask Denver

    • Rob Staton

      It’s ok everyone

      No need to draft a QB

      They can just name me as starter for $5 an hour because every Carroll QB is a star and that will definitely happen with whoever plays

      No need to waste a pick on such a redundant position


      • Rob Staton

        Also missed those star QB seasons in 2010 and 2011 pre Wilson

      • Wilson502

        Rob you’ve done a real solid for this fanbase with your dedication, but can u make the draft get here sooner? I’m afraid these flaming dumpster fire takes are reaching critical mass in this fanbase.

        • Rob Staton

          I wish I could

          • Wilson502

            I know doing a Livestream during the draft isn’t your cup of tea so to speak, but it’d be really awesome if u did one this yr for round 1.

        • Hawksorhiking?

          Right!?! I’m so ready for the draft

    • geoff u

      Can you ask Denver who their QB was every time they made it to the Super Bowl? Of course not, no one remembers Elway or Manning.

      • Wilson502

        These flaming tire fire takes are just so easy to pick apart and dunk on, it’s really kind of sad just how many in this fanbase fall for and buy into such bad arguments.

    • Denver Hawker

      Ask me what? I thought this was sarcasm font

      • Peter

        Well played

    • Lord Snow

      And yet Pete Carol’s overall career record in the NFL is something like right at the .500 mark without Russell Wilson

      • Wilson502

        Go look at BB’s without Brady…… It’s almost like QB makes a huge difference……shine that…

        • Lord Snow


        • Peter

          That time when people were arguing about Brady v belichick…..until ancient ass Brady went to Tampa and got a ring and old Bill fell off a freaking cliff.

          • Wilson502

            💯💯. Without Brady there to make him look good, he’s not all that. Hence why I pound the table so hard to go QB with their first pick. There’s no defender that will elevate this team to SB contenders or even conference title contenders for that matter.

      • Wilson502

        *imagine that

      • Peter

        I know people love to hate but when Pete opines they won a lot of games because of wilson people should listen.

    • McZ

      Is that the same Carroll who got his ass handed over by a 7th round rookie QB?Who cannot win in the postseason, because the teams he creates are not able to play a full game of complimentary football?

  8. no frickin clue

    Question for the masses: what is your beverage of choice to accompany the 1st round selections? I am going with some Bulleit bourbon. And if we take Carter at #5, I may have to send the missus out to get me a 2nd bottle. 🙁

    • Malanch

      If you read Kozzmo’s take above, you might want to get an early start…

      • Sea Mode

        Scotch all the way. Maybe I’ll reach for my sweeter Glen Scotia Victoriana at pick 5 and then be ready for some smoky Ardbeg Corryvreckan by pick 20.

        I haven’t liked the bourbon I’ve tried so far, just too sweet for my taste, though I understand Bullet has some rye that might give some spicier notes. I’ll have to try it sometime at my local whisky bar.

        • PJ in Seattle

          Bulleitt Rye is quite good. I recommend.

    • Big Mike

      I hate to admit this….but at age 66, anything more than one beer and I’ll be up 3 times in the night. 😞

      • Peter


        Not quite there yet. But most nights I’m the sleepy time bear drinking some chamomile keeping it ridiculously mellow.

  9. Mel

    Stealing this from your 2 round mock video Rob, but I’d love to get your opinion.

    Levis is quite highly regarded with his phenomenal frame and arm talent. What I can’t explain is, with the QB class so awful last year, why didn’t he come out? He’s a better talent than Pickett, Willis, Ridder and everyone else in the class. He knew he was losing talent that wasn’t being replaced on offense. Why didn’t he get out while the getting was good and easily be a top pick in the 2022 draft?

    • Rob Staton

      He said he went to Kentucky to play for two years as a commitment to them and because he thought it would benefit him to have two years starting experience

      • Mel

        Thanks for the reply! I always respect a man of his word. I hope he finds a great landing spot. The NFL isn’t exactly known for rewarding loyalty

      • JDH

        That speaks well to his character as you’ve emphasized a number of times. I really think the Hawks got lucky, not only getting the 5th pick from Denver’s implosion, but having 4 legitimately strong (though somewhat flawed) QBs available along with at least one strong D lineman. I’d love to have Levis or Richardson or Stroud or Anderson. I hope that’s how JS/PC feel so we keep our other draft picks and use them to start filling holes and depth after we get our QB. It feels like we will. I just hope that is how it actually unfolds. It’s not bad when the worst case scenario is getting the most highly regarded pass rusher in the draft. Waiting is hard…

    • samprassultanofswat

      Mel: It’s simple. Levis didn’t come out last year. Because in his mind he wasn’t ready. BTW: What makes you think Levis would have gone number one overall last year.

      • geoff u

        Did you forget last years QB class…?

        • Peter

          I say it once a week…..but 1-2 last year.

          Pickett? With one total highlight play. Come on levis would have blown corral, Willis, ridder out of the water.

  10. One Bad Mata’afa

    The Hawks lived through two realities…building a roster when you have a starting QB on a rookie deal, and building/maintaining a roster when you don’t. I hope they learned the value of the former and can’t pass on the gift/opportunity to select a top-rated QB. That chance just doesn’t come along very often and boy are the cards aligned this year.

    What happens if you go DL and hooker doesn’t make it to 20? Or a team leapfrogs the hawks before they pull the trigger? What then? If you go QB at top-5, there will more likely be good DL options they can pivot to if one or two come off the board

    They haven’t even passed on a QB at 5 and I’m already starting to be sick to my stomach haha

  11. Hawk Mock

    Another thing nobody brings up is the possibility that we actually will have another top pick next year. It is just assumed that Geno will play well enough to keep us around 20 at worst. People forget that with 2 weeks left, there were scenarios where we could have ended up with the 3rd and 10th pick. Geno, even playing above his head, almost still delivered a top 10 pick. He comes back to the mean and has his turnover worthy plays converted and leads the league in turnovers – we may be looking at top 5 again. I still want a QB, but if they were of the mindset that this is a multi-year rebuild and Anderson/Carter/Wilson was the top guy on their board, maybe they think a defensive lineman takes awhile to become dominant too, so, maybe it is better to start by drafting one this year and push the Q til next year.

    Trying to prepare myself for a huge letdown if Richardson and Stroud are available and we pass on them.

    • Rob Staton

      So the plan at QB would be:

      ‘Maybe we’ll be so bad next season we can push this issue into next year?’


      • Spectator

        Just a question, but wouldn’t that be preferable to getting Hooker in the late first? I want Stroud or Richardson at 5. I’m going to be pissed if they pass on those 2 for anyone else. But to add salt to the wound would be getting Hooker at the end of the first. I’d prefer we push the QB position to 2023, over getting Hooker. And I appreciate that even if Geno plays bad, we won’t likely have a high pick, if even too 10 and will be just getting the 3rd best next yea, in a class I don’t like any of the QBs in currently. But still prefer that to getting Hooker, and even bigger reason we NEED to now pass on Qb this year at 5.

        • Rob Staton

          Hoping to be bad isn’t a plan

          • London Seahawk

            Rob – when you get your new site up and the merch page is in place I’d vote this to be the first T-shirt available please. Would pay $25 for one in Seahawks colours.

            • Rob Staton

              One day I promise I will update this site 🙂

    • Malanch

      “…we may be looking at top 5 again.” –Hawk Mock

      That could very well be true, but (1) the team won’t plan their roster-building around that contingency, and (2) if they were to ice a top five pick again, how would they get to the top spot? You think the team at #1 is going to sell the opportunity to take the best player in the draft—quite possibly a premier quarterback?

      • Malanch

        …Because I wouldn’t count on a repeat of what Chicago did this year. Typically, the worst team in the league has a quarterback deficiency, and the opportunity to grab an elite prospect (say, Caleb Williams) will be so scarce that the Seahawks themselves would probably have to be that worst team in 2023.

      • Hawk Mock

        (1) Not saying they would plan their roster building around that contingency. I’m all in on Richardson. Spit-balling an alternative thought process that has them rating defensive players higher than the QBs so I’m in a place to not throw my phone through the tv when and if it happens. (2) Same way Carolina moved from 9 to do it, you know, make an offer that gets accepted.

        • Malanch

          “…you know, make an offer that gets accepted.”

          But what I’m saying is that such an offer will only be accepted if the worst team in the league just so happens not to need a quarterback (as with Chicago this year) AND the top quarterback prospect just so happens to be a good one (as with Bryce Young this year). It doesn’t usually line up like that, and when it does, you can bet on a hot market driving the price through the roof. A team could be looking at coughing up several future first rounders to seal the deal, and that hampers the team-building process for years.

          I’m with you that the Seahawks probably won’t be very good this year, but with a master culture crafter like Carroll rah-rahing the team to another year of overachievement, their record will probably still put them in the middle of the draft somewhere, especially with the Cards and Rams in full-on rebuild mode. Without a blue-chip veteran quarterback as potential trade-bait (as with peak Russell Wilson in 2017–18), the team would be reliant on draft capital to make the trade.

  12. Glor

    Did a little 3 round mock with the new expectation of 2 QBs and 2 defenders going in the top 4.
    This let the hawks move down two and still have their pick of QB:
    Anthony Richardson
    QB Florida
    trade icon

    Calijah Kancey
    DT Pittsburgh
    trade icon

    Adetomiwa Adebawore
    EDGE Northwestern

    Joe Tippmann
    OC Wisconsin
    trade icon

    Luke Musgrave
    TE Oregon State

    Luke Wypler
    OC Ohio State
    -figured with Wylper still here and tippman able to play guard, why not take him. RB here would have probably made more sense.

    2024 CIN 2nd
    2024 MIA 2nd

  13. Marc

    Richardson or Stroud at 5 is fine by me. Then trade back from 20 and get another third round pick. They need a center. Then go all defense.

  14. Forrest

    I’m all in on Richardson! As a season ticket holder, he’s just so fun to watch! Could you imagine if we took AR and added Jalin Hyatt. …just watched AR drop back and drop bombs to DK, Lockett and Hyatt with the Walker/AR rushing options underneath? God Lord that’d be fun!

    • Spectator

      JMO no thanks to Hyatt for me. When was the last time a purely speed guy held value? Tyreek is closest and he is more than speed, and much faster speed. Hyatt testing proved he wasn’t special athlete, even if his speed looks good on tape when he is schemed open. Give me Mingo in the second over Hyatt everyday.

  15. geoff u

    So much information out there now about the Hawks going defense and absolutly not taking a quarterback. So the question is, is the organization a sieve and truly awful at hiding their intentions? Or the opposite? Guess we find out in a weak.

    Also, I really want to know how we rate/rank these QBs. I really want two to be there at 5 and us picking one, so at least I’ll know that much.

  16. Matt


    You don’t have to sell me anymore on a QB. I am 100% down at #5 to take one. However I hope that QB is Levis or Richardson.

    If someone with all his physical skills is available at #5 that means…

    -One team preferred a smaller/less physically gifted QB at #1
    -Another QB-needy team decided to go defense at #2
    -No one else traded up.

    That should be eye-opening at best and downright concerning at worst.

    Then you have your boy Michael Lombardi commenting that Stroud isn’t that easy to coach and “he thinks he knows better.” Look at this:

    “C.J. Stroud is an interesting guy,” Lombardi said. “When you talk to people in the league, they will tell you C.J. Stroud is not — and this is not a knock, this is just a conversation — not an easy guy to coach… I think the word that people use is he’s very not-believing in what you are saying. So he’s a little bit challenging to coach, so it’s not like he comes in and embraces it. He’s got a little bit of a different style to him.

    Watch it here: https://twitter.com/VSiNLive/status/1645829058444263442?s=20

    If, and I stress IF, that’s true about Stroud then he should be off the board.

    • geoff u

      Maybe he’s right though and the coaches are idiots…

      • Bmseattle

        Someone should ask Russ what he thinks.

        • Bmseattle

          …about whether our coaches are idiots.

          • Peter

            Tom cable and the Winchester mansion ( Google it UK fans) oline, the cursed 4th round wr’s, the hairdos playing TE, the penny vs chubb decision, etc, etc,…..

            It can be both true he fell off a cliff and our coaches don’t know shit from apple butter.

            I’m higher on Pete than I have been for years. But….9 and freaking 8. Thats not exactly a resounding success. It’s just a copy of the last five to six years.

            • PJ in Seattle

              With one of the easiest schedules in the NFL and the total collapse of 2 of our 4 division opponents. Blows me away how so many think we are world beaters now since we backed into the playoffs.

        • geoff u

          Did Phil Jackson make Michael Jordan great, or Jordan make Jackson great? Did BB make Brady great, or Brady make BB great? Coaching may get Geno into the pro bowl, but it’ll never make him a Tom Brady.

          Obviously that’s an extreme example, and we don’t know if CJ is on that level — he could very well just be full of himself — but all indicators are he has a very high work ethic and planned/coordinated his own pro day.

    • Malanch

      Fwiw, Brock Huard said he wouldn’t take C.J. Stroud at all, because the Seahawks “already have that guy” in Geno Smith. He would also pass on Anthony Richardson and Will Levis, because he just doesn’t like them as prospects at all. The only quarterback he likes is Bryce Young, whom he expects to be off the table at #1. So, he says Seattle should package #5 with #20 to swap with Houston so they can get Will Anderson—a player he claims is a “generational talent” who “checks every box”. Maybe he’s right about all of it, but one could surmise he’s only seen Anderson’s sack reel, and that he’s unaware Alabama played Tennessee last year.

      • Mr drucker in hooterville

        Seattle didn’t draft Geno’s conteact with the belief that he is the guy for 3 years. Brock seems to think Seattle doesn’t need a QB for awhile. He is wrong.

        • Wilson502

          Brock obviously drank the smooth brain kool aid this off-season with how absolutely dumpster fire his takes have been this yr. Will Anderson a “generational” talent? GTFOH with that nonsense. Seems like Huard has gotten lazy like everyone else in the media with these ridiculous takes to drive clicks and feed these lame dumpster fire narratives by the media and fanbase.

    • Spectator

      Even if what he says is true, not sure that would be cause to take him off your board. Doesn’t say he isn’t willing to work or that he doesn’t love football. I interpret that in a way that he is stubborn and believes in himself and you need to earn his respect. Maybe annoying, as a coach that’s dealt with kids like that, but by no means bad because those are the ones that end up being the most loyal when you earn their respect. Difficult in the way Lombardi describes is very interesting, but I don’t worry about anyone not believing in PC, for all PCs flaws, it’s not been his lack of ability to get players to buy in.

  17. Allen M.

    The defenders at the top of the draft are very good – and perhaps not elite, except for one with major red flags. Why do it backwards and pass on both the positional value and tremendous talent at the top of this QB class only to go defender early and QB later? I don’t like it.

  18. Hojo

    I still fear the trade back, but the Geno and Lock contracts from last year and this year suggest they have a plan to draft a young QB.

  19. Wilson502

    This article has just convinced me even more that it’s QB or bust at #5 (still think they should trade up to ensure they lock down QBoTF). I just don’t see the value Anderson provides long term vs a QB much less one of the other defenders later in round 1 or round 2.

  20. Hawksorhiking?

    The Cigar Thoughts podcast had Derrik Klassen, an NFL writer at Bleacher Report, on and he had a great, positive take on AR. Made me want him at 5 even more than I previously did. Definitely a good listen. They actually replayed a clip of Jacson asking Derrik about Richardson last year.

    • Rob Staton

      And the next Cigar Thoughts podcast will feature some blogger from Rotherham

      • Sea Mode

        Awesome! Always one I enjoy.

        • Hawksorhiking?


  21. Sluggo42

    I gotta hand it to you Rob, a new way to slice and dice the top 5 guys. And then another 350 comments again- I never would have thought it possible, but here we are again, and still over a week to go-
    I always imagined myself a pretty devout fan, but some of these guys commenting have forgotten more than I’ve ever known about the Hawks.
    I’m dying for this draft more than I ever can remember, although every draft is super important, but this one with #5 is extra big.
    Our pick will only be one of the 5 or 6 (I hate to include Wilson or Carter but…)
    But it won’t be the corner, that much I know…
    I’m all in on any of the 4 qb’s

    • Peter

      Five is huge.

      But those next three picks…..? Dial those in and this team could really be something.

      • Matt

        Absolutely this.

    • DJ 1/2 way

      Sluggo really got it right with his first comment. Somehow, Rob can write an article every day about the top five and it is both worth reading and then reading 350 comments. What will it be in 24 hours?

      I agree with the rest of Sluggos comment but really wanted to emphasise that first part.

  22. Ivan

    Rob, I have a different view. One informed by the movie City Slickers where Curly says “the secret to life is the one thing.” Applied to the Seahawks – what is the one thing? The one thing they can do to be better than any other team. I think they are a lot closer to having Super Bowl quality on offense than defense. Imagine if all five premium picks (Rounds 1-3) were used on offense. What could they do: QB of the future, an elite RB, a likely starting center, a true WR#3 (or top TE instead) and another OL likely capable at multiple positions. Would this be enough to create a dominating offense? The defense is then addressed by whatever can be found this year in day three draft picks, UDFAs, more late stage veteran free agents; followed by next year’s cycle. One of the Seahawks systemic problems has been too many plays on defense and too few on offense, resulting in a huge time of procession imbalance. With an offensive that can dominate time of possession, the defense should avoid the 4th quarter exhaustion we have seen.

    • Mr drucker in hooterville

      Unless the O scores too wuickly.

    • Malanch

      As long as they’re getting good value at each spot, I’d be just fine if they went offense-heavy on Days 1–2.

      With the mock draft simulators I’ve used, the board usually falls such that it’s easier to get more highly rated players at the Hawks’ current slots if I go with positions of opportunity on offense. For positions of need on defense, I have to try to finagle awkward trades to avoid reaching.

      But these mock draft big boards surely differ greatly from Seattle’s big board, so maybe from the team’s perspective defensive picks will be easier to snare without compromising value. We know John Schneider’s Ron Wolf-inspired methodology of board management means that need is heavily baked into the cake (“we draft for our team”), so defensive players will probably have higher grades than offensive players in this particular draft, all else being equal. Stated differently, players at positions of greater need—which are predominantly on defense—will have a greater chance of making the final 53, and therefore will have higher grades than equally rated players at positions of lesser need.

      But whatever the methodology, the value has to be there, whether going offense or defense. Remember, Moses might have dropped the third tablet and shattered it on the rocks, but historians generally agree that the 11th Commandment stated, “Thou shalt not reach.” Who are we to question the will of Jehovah?


  23. Rscott412

    Rob thank you for your commitment to your page the content is truly amazing and keeps me going on the hawks during the off-season great job
    Draft wise QB at 5 is a must any of the top 4 would be good. I like Levis and Richardson more than Stroud and young. Young’s size worries me and the fact that Ohio State literally doesn’t produce quality pro qbs worries me
    At 20 and 37 D-line and edge Will McDonald/Ade Ade
    D-line Mazi Smith/Cancey don’t know if one of those guys will be available at 37 but I would run to the podium if they were. Center and guard with the next two picks Tippeman or Wypler and the the Alabama kid at guard ekiyor then fill in the roster with a lb rb and best player available
    Can’t wait for the draft

  24. Troy

    Short trip down memory lane 2108 draft. John Schneider scouts in person Allen, and was exploring a trade with the Browns to move on from a peak Wilson in exchange for the 1st overall pick. Clearly he had aspirations on getting the uber athletic yet raw/inaccurate QB – a choice, certainly wasn’t a NEED.


    Also noteworthy was that Baker Mayfield and Sam Darnold were almost universally higher on most if not all media Kiper type draft boards.

    Here we are today – JS/PC took Mrs Allen’s G7 all over the country to stand in the front row of crowds of spectators to watch 4 top QB prospects. Holding on to the last coupon from the Wilson bond that’s coming due, in the prime spot to get not one, but perhaps 2 options of what I would consider their top QB prospects – Stroud/Anderson – and all outsiders and speculators think that taking one would be UNFATHOMABLE.

    If JS thought for a moment in 2018 that Josh Allen was the future and not Wilson – he either has the biggest set of cojone’s, or he has a very specific vision for what he wants at the most important position on the team. The league landscape is you either have a franchise QB that is in the MVP discussion every year and competing into February, or you don’t.

    If Stroud actually did not get picked at 4, which I still think is more realistic that it not happening, and we are faced with the dilema of AR or Stroud – no doubt John Holmes Schneider won’t be wringing his hands like we all will be.

    • Malanch

      The good thing about the present situation is that the current quarterback is cooperating as the team explores possibly drafting another one. The previous one got his fee-fees all ruffled when that happened, and we just can’t have that. Never mind that, in THE quintessential team game, Players 2–53 all must be ready every offseason to fight off draftees coming for their jobs—this simply doesn’t apply to quarterbacks. See, the central theme of the program is competition—except at the most important position of all.

  25. Justaguy

    Carter is a troubled phenom and that’s why the blog is tired of talking about him. Stroud is still a top 5 talent no matter where he lands. Your A+ draft should be Will Levis and Michael Mayer in the 1st round. Ade Adebawore and Jahmyr Gibbs in the 2nd round.

  26. Brodie

    For my fellow film-grinders, I found a pretty great Youtube channel. The guy has all-22 tape on a ton of different prospects. He’s coming at it from the lens of a fantasy player, but I think his takes are fair if not all that ‘scouty’ (or just mute him). Still nice to find so much all-22 tape in one place.

    Here’s his Mingo breakdown with Bama, A&M and Arkansas covered. The great thing with these is you can watch Mingo as well as Anderson, Branch, Young, etc.


    • LouCityHawk

      Good find, I’ve been finding all sorts of interesting stuff on YouTube this year.

    • Peter

      Nice. Fascinating that his is a fantasy accout.

  27. LouCityHawk

    Once I saw #5 locked in, I’ve been assuming the pick will be one of 4 QB, Anderson or Carter. No other player in this draft is worth #5. Now, if the Hawks are out on Carter, and out on 2 of 4 QB, that is where the pain starts.

    Option 1. Trade down for a Lance deal (if it’s there).

    Option 2. Pick another player: better be Bijan, Mayer or Branch.

    I believe they will take a QB though, and my pref is Levis/Stroud.

    My real problem starts with pick #20, and to a lesser extent #37. I don’t like any of the defenders that are projected for that range, and there are lots of good offensive players just sitting there.

    @ 20 I see a lot of Kancey, McDonald, Nolan Smith (weird), Bresee – I’m on on all of them. Ade feels like a bust to me, in my gut.

    @ 37 the mocks from commenter/experts have Mazi, Simpson, Sanders, Campbell, Ojulari, and even Siaki Ika.

    At those same picks you usually see a lot of offensive talent go off the board. Many mocks have Downs/Zay/QJ available, almost all TE not named Mayer, JMS/Tippmann, Gibbs/Charbonnet.

    Seattle should take a QB at 5, Seattle should probably go offense with 20ish and 37ish, leaving pick 52 the first realistic pick for the D and defensive talent abounds between picks 52-100. Be trying to acquire and extra pick between 50-100, and maybe one between 100&125.

    Beginning at pick 52 you can feast on players like Pickens, the Young’s (ALA, MissSt, Ten), Benton; you can grab an Overshown or or Dorian Williams. Derick Hall might still be available (I’ve gotten ok with him at 37, and prefer Hall to McDonald). Also a great range to snag Sydney Brown.

    This started out as a short post and grew….

    B/l Give me Stroud, Downs, JMS to start this draft. Maybe Branch if he drops to 20, or Derick Hall at 37. C’era una volta il West…

  28. YDB

    I keep thinking more and more that if the Cardinals don’t find a trade partner, then they will draft Carter. I know their franchise is a train wreck and this may be one of the worst culture fits, but what is to stop Bidwell from being Bidwell? They don’t need a QB and Wilson is nowhere near the ball player that Carter is. This may be the perfect storm for both pro and con Carter camps in Seahawk fandom to get a chance to say “I told you so.” Either he flames out and we can breath a sigh of relief that we don’t have to face another DL monster twice a year, or he meets his potential and our QB is getting crushed while some of the Seahawk fans can feel a slight sense of relief knowing they guessed right.

    As far as the Hawks go, if Stroud is there you have to take him. I never thought we would have a chance at him coming into last season, but here we are. The only reservation I had about him was that he would occasionally have a little wobble in his spiral in 2021. He seems to have cleared that up, probably though a bunch of hard work. So, if he’s committed enough to make that improvement, learning the Waldron system with a year as an understudy and speeding up his footwork should be very doable.

    • Patrick Toler

      Stroud reminds me of Geno – beautiful passes, great accuracy, great mechanics, a bit upright but faster than given credit for, flashes of creativity but some questions there as well. The question, as noted in the article, is can he do all the mental things that NFL quarterbacks need to do? I think the answer is probably yes, but it will take some time (hopefully not as long as Geno).

      • God of Thunder


        No one has ever taken as long as Geno Smith to become a viable starting QB in the NFL: I mean, he’s 32 years old!

  29. Patrick Toler

    I continue to believe (and hope) that they will end up with Richardson. He is the perfect fit in every way. I would be excited for Stroud or Levis as well, if Seattle’s interviews and background work leads them to that. It seems almost locked in now that Anderson will go 2 or 3.

    I don’t think you need to take a shot at QB if you pass at 5. If they love Hooker or DTR fine. But you can realistically hope to be able to draft a QB prospect of their caliber next year if needed.

  30. Palatypus

    This is all about the agents. The long knives are out.

    We have four generational quarterback prospects that if they find themselves in the right place could launch a dynasty. Lose out on this and your 8%(?) mandated fee by the NFLPA license over 10(?) years of (A-times-Inflation-times-fandom^success) is what? Pick your unsuccessful quarterback in the wrong situation.

    “Look Drake is going to mature. He’s going to be a starter, He’s going to be committed. He’s going to work hard.” Drew Rosenhaus.

  31. Gross MaToast

    There’s little doubt in my mind that giving $30m to an unmotivated young man who enjoys a good time and has gotten by on raw talent his entire life without having to dedicate himself to serious training could backfire in any way. Print the Super Bowl tickets.

    All of this, everything from the forced trade to the collapse of the Broncos, has been some sort of cosmic kismet leading the Seahawks from an old franchise QB who was closer to washed up than any of us realized, to the new franchise QB who should be a Josh Allen starter kit and the face of the league by 2030. It couldn’t be more perfect. Even Pete couldn’t screw this up. Right?

    Somehow, though, the Seattle and national media has missed the boat. For them, it’s:

    Malik 2.0 +
    33 year-old career backup QB +
    Something that we haven’t looked into and don’t care about +
    LOB mystique +
    Pete +
    DK =


    The most valuable asset in the NFL is a starting QB on a rookie contract. If the Seahawks forgo that for a guy who has a brass pole installed on the home sideline bench area and eats a bucket of Buffalo Wild Wings while throwing dollar bills at the dancing ladies in between his 25 snaps per game, I will actively express my dissatisfaction. Tube Steak and I will stand outside the VMAC dressed in black until the franchise is either sold or folded.

    • Gross MaToast

      My preferences :

      5 – Richardson
      20 – Bijan
      37 – Downs
      53 – Tippmann

      “What about defense?” you ask.

      Get a real DC and then we’ll talk. Nothing has worked since Pete began hiring “his guys.”

      For now, we’re going Big 12 offense.

      • Peter

        Jokes aside. We are waaaay closer to offensive juggernaut than team that is middle of the pack defense.

    • Peter

      Tube steak! We hardly knew ya.

    • Rob Staton



  32. Magic Seahawk

    The Hawks are in a great position here to take advantage of what the other teams do as they do need help in lots of areas. If 4 QBs go in the top 4 then they can go and get Will Anderson and be happy with the help they have for their Defence. If Anderson if gone then they take their QB for the future and let him mature/learn the playbook without the pressure of having to start right away.

    I also think this will worry other teams as the Hawks can go so many different ways and the others won’t know what they are doing until the night. It may force QB needy teams to trade up, Titans, Commanders, Raiders Ect, if they want to get ahead of the Hawks. I think if the Texans go to Defence, Carter,Anderson or Wilson, the Cardinals will start getting some phone calls for the #3 spot so a team can come up and grab their QB1 .

  33. Ryan

    The No-QB crowd bewilders me. Within a couple of years most of them will be begging to trade multiple future firsts to move up to get the missing piece QB, but because they heard someone on the radio say that Levis was Goff and Richardson was Bortles, they’re stubbornly refusing to want the QBs that are within reach.

  34. DJ 1/2 way

    Great article and many great comments, but I think one idea is missing. While I agree on picking a QB and that it will be better for the cap to cut/trade Geno, there is a chance Geno plays so good the Seahawks keep him at that price. He would have to improve on his year and show some more endurance with a great showing in the second half and maybe playoffs, but it is possible that Geno is the starter for the next two years. Even knowing that I would still take a QB at #5 and he would have two years to get things figured out.

    That would give the Seahawks three years with a low cap QB hopefully with the defense fixed and everything lined up for a few superbowl runs.

    • Rob Staton

      Well yes but the point of the article is to discuss why you need to plan ahead

  35. London Seahawk

    It all comes down to whether PCJS are in win-now mode or whether they see it like Rob does here and we are two drafts away, rather than 1.

    The non-QB crowd believe the former, and that Geno can win a Superbowl in the next couple of years.
    I think an interesting thought-experiment is to put yourself in the shoes of someone with that view, and do a ‘win-now’ mock…
    How many needs to you address and how does the roster look at the end….

    You’d pass on the QBs and go BPA defence… Anderson (or Carter -eek! – probably off their board – but this is a thought experiment…) or Witherspoon and make the secondary a position of strength.
    You’d maybe pass on the great TE class because this year the room is OK.

    Immediate needs:
    D-line – probably – what 4 picks needed here?? Look at the Superbowl D-line rosters. They are always STACKED!! Ours is empty.. barren… dry as a bone! To ‘win-now’ we’d need a rotation, not just have every starting gap filled.
    CB – if you didn’t go Witherspoon – and maybe even if you did.
    LB – unless they are counting on Bush
    RB – probably x2

    That’s about x10 picks……..

    So essentially what you need is a draft which isn’t just great (like last years) but is like lottery-winning insanity levels of mad – where every single pick down to your late-rounders all become starter-level, Superbowl run contributor level players – in their first year!!!!!!!

    Now – split those needs in two and get them in two drafts… Now you’re talking. Much easier to see.

    I think the key is to run this through as a long-term strategy, and look at it as two years… if you do that you see that the really talented QBs sitting in your lap this year, should absolutely be a priority… because next year you’ll be nowhere near the QBs… but you’ll have a normal set of draft stock to spend on ‘finishing touches’.

    • London Seahawk

      The counter to this is that Geno doesn’t have to win this year, but that he could also be your Superbowl QB next year – and the year after… and that Geno’s window is just starting and we’ve got 3 seasons to go for it.

      This is a huge leap of faith and seems to hinge on two things:
      1- Because he’s only just become a starter he’s got no mileage on his tyres. (I don’t really buy this so much. Mileage is something you talk about with running backs taking a pounding. A QB is more likely to ‘lose their legs’ or their arm strength – just as a natural aging process, not through wear and tear).

      2- That – as Geno said himself – ‘Turnover worthy plays’ is not a real stat. And that those throws were in fact perfectly executed, tight-window throughs that he should be being applauded for rather than dinged for. I have some sympathy with that and I think that stat could do with some extra context. For example, are there some great passers who also wrack up heavy numbers in this category, because they are a bit of a gun-slinger..?

      In any case, the draft comes down to the faith you have in Geno – as a fan… and more importantly, as a coach and GM (and their short and mid-term career plans too I guess)…
      We will soon see..
      We have some evidence on faith in Geno… by way of them sticking by him and giving him his shot.
      On the other hand, we have his contract – which doesn’t scream a huge amount of faith to me.

    • Allen M.

      I trust our front office’s ability to find gems at CB later far too much to draft a CB in Witherspoon’s range. It’s like punting on 3rd down.

  36. Coach

    To go with your “We need to strengthen the D-line” theme, Chris Simms released his DT rankings. Here is the link. Interesting thoughts – also has honorable mentions at the end of the video after his top 5. He lists 11 of them overall, I’m hoping we get 2 of the 11! Go Hawks!


  37. Diehard82

    Speaking of planning ahead, what grub will everyone have planned for draft night in America? Seriously, what makes this draft really special is for the first time since 2010 we may actually be picking in the first hour of the draft. I suspect that’s why there is so much passion this year among Hawk fans. We’re used to watching from the sidelines as other teams pick all the blue chip prospects. And when we have had top 10 picks (2010, 2022) we had to go OT due to glaring need. There was no doubt. No intrigue. This is damn fun having options. The table is set for John Schneider to lay the groundwork for the next Super Bowl team, perhaps in 25, 26 or 27. These players drafted next week aren’t just to fill immediate needs, they also need to be foundational players for the next super bowl run. Who has impeccable character and Grit? Who won’t give up when the going gets tough? Who can self motivate? The 2013 lineup was filled with those guys. I can’t wait to see John’s masterpiece. Last year was a fantastic start. And I believe it’s gonna look even better in a year or two as Mafe, Smith and Dareke Young blossom. I feel so optimistic I could do the Walter Houston dance from “Treasure of the Sierra Madre”.

    And to answer my own question, I’m making Devils on Horseback for finger food, and Cuccina Cuccina Chicken Chopped Salad.

    I’ll be stoked for whoever they pick at 5, and my money is on Mazee Smith, Ade Ade or Keion White at 20.

    I expect Carter is not on their board. And while Richardson just needs 1 GM or owner to fall in love with him, I suspect he may fall out of the top 10, and go 11-20. Any of the other 3 QB’s falling to 5 would be a gift IMO.

    Thanks again Rob for all the hard work, insightful commentary, entertaining interviews and podcasts. Clearly a labor of love for you. You have Grit!

    • London Seahawk

      I think your point here about 25, 26, 26 is important.
      Foundational players for not just ‘a Superbowl run’… but to be a perennial (careful with the spelling!) contender.
      A team that is in the playoff mix again for a decade.

      I think Team Geno is reaching for something else. More of a short term punt…

      These foods sound great.
      I’ll be in Rio de Janeiro for a work trip and am a bit worried I will be out for a work dinner when all this is going on.
      Figuring out how to be checking my phone without appearing weird or having to explain an odd UK-centric Seahawks draft obsessison….. :-s

      • Diehard82

        Rio would be one of a few places I might miss the draft for. Eating out you can order what you want, no worries about prepping food yourself. Good luck with peaking at your phone. If you can record the draft somehow you can catch in hotel. Best of luck and safe travels.

  38. GF

    Now it turns out that CJ Stroud is a bad QB, that he was not properly prepared for the NFL, that his S2 test was too low (now many care about this apparently), that he is hard to coach, this part of the season I hate hahaha HOPE Stroud is available at pick 5, if Stroud and Will Anderson are available, I would go for Stroud, you can get a Will Anderson maybe next season or maybe someone later in this draft (maybe not as good as Will Anderson but it doesn’t matter), what I am sure is that we won’t get or can hardly get a QB like Stroud, when almost always our top pick is between the 15-20th spot.

    • Rob Staton

      All we need to hear now is that he enjoyed ‘Rings of Power’ and listens to ‘Lizzo’ or ‘Ed Sheeran’ and he’s off my board, that’s for sure…

      • GF


      • 805Hawk

        I heard that Stroud thought Top Gun Maverick was highly overrated and it was just an okay movie.

        • Rob Staton

          Sixth round grade confirmed

  39. L80

    To me, the pick is rather obvious even though it is uncertain as to whom it will be .\

    That being said IT NEEDS TO BE THE QBOTF !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    They will NEVER be gifted this again in our lifetime and QB is a N E E D.

    Too many holes otherwise. Just take and develop or do what your “trend” is, to let them compete and the best man wins.

  40. Trevor

    I can’t think of a worse scenario than the Hawks taking Carter and Hooker with the first two picks.

    A DT who can’t stay in shape with questionable character and a rookie QB who will be a minimum of 27 before he can start a game.

    If this this the route PC/ JS go then I will have lost all hope in the Hawks being anything more than average for the balance of thier tenure.

    I have thought all along given thier renewed emphasis on character and after the success of last years draft class that Carter would not even be on thier board but the sheer volume of talk from league insiders who are connected placing him with the Hawks is starting to really worry me.

    • London Seahawk

      I don’t think Hooker is likely. I know he’s injured so didn’t have a pro day, but have we even heard that they called him on Zoom? If there’s been any smoke there I’ve missed it.

      Two other things that make Hooker vanishingly unlikely for me….

      1- There are like 4-5 teams people are projecting this plan onto… of moving back into the first to take Hendon Hooker. If you’ve got so much company in trying to do that, it’s not much of a strategy to hang your hat on. Chances are someone beats you to it, or it costs too much.

      2- If your plan is to win now with Geno — then Hooker DOES seem like a waste of resources to me. Someone who’s ceiling is what – Teddy Bridgewater, Geno Smith? Essentially another mediocre guy.

      I disagree with Rob slightly in his article in this respect in that I think Drew Lock is your ‘one in the chamber’ for now… yes he’s not locked down long-term, but he won’t cost much to renew if you wanted to do that (in the scenario that Geno has a poor year). He seems to have as much upside as Hooker so that for me would be a wasted pick.

      • Rob Staton

        Lock’s going into year five of his career

        He is already settling into the role of a backup, having seemingly had no serious interest on the market from teams needing a starter or a competitor to start

        He turns 27 this year

        They only signed him to a one-year deal

        They would have to re-sign him in the off-season

        There is no way he’s their one in the chamber. The one in the chamber has to be contracted for multiple years, at a cheap rate, who can be sold as a bright alternative to Geno in 2024 if needed. It can’t be the guy who lost out to Geno, but we’ll give him a go now and hope for the best.

        That would be malpractice.

        • London Seahawk

          Good points!!!

          OK, but now I’m worried they’re interested in Hendon Hooker……

  41. Hawk Man

    Dream draft
    #5: Tyrese Wilson : best edge rusher best De since Bosa
    # 20: Kincaid : Amazing pass catcher Solves long term TE issue
    # Joe Tippmann-reminds me of. Max Unger
    # Cedric Tillman – I see Tee Higgins
    What you Gus think?

    • Rob Staton

      I don’t see any ‘dream’ scenario that includes drafting Tyree Wilson at #5

    • DW

      I for one, would be wildly disappointed.

    • 805Hawk

      This feels more like a sleepless night with the night-sweats and calf cramps. Although, I do agree on Tippmann.

  42. D

    I agree with you Rob. QB or Anderson seems to be the way to go. Carter and Wilson aren’t worth a #5 pick. If Stroud is still around at #5 I think JS will happily take him, and I could see Pete and John really liking Richardson. It’s not outside the realm of possibility that they take Carter, but it seems unlikely. Wouldn’t it be hilarious if the Hawks take Bijan Robinson at #5?

    • Rob Staton

      Wouldn’t it be hilarious if the Hawks take Bijan Robinson at #5?

      I’m sure they like and respect him but it won’t happen at #5

      • Allen M.

        He’d be really tough to pass up at 20, though. I’d say F it and turn in the card. Bijan is something really special. (So is Walker!)

        • Rob Staton

          And that’s why he won’t be there at #20

  43. Lawrie

    Another consideration is the team is going to be coming up for sale soon.
    After May 2024 I think you will start to see more interest in the selling of the team.
    Wouldn’t a long term young cheap quarterback be a selling feature, along with the really good defensive bulls you can get in late 1 or in 2
    Or maybe it doesn’t matter, just a thought

  44. Zorn Is King

    Im thinking that they will have to draft at least 2 DL and 2 OL.. but maybe a total of 5 or 6…
    That leaves between 4-6 for all other positions.
    Gives some leeway for BPA’s…
    All in all it’s looking like an exciting flexible draft where they can have surprises drop to them and unexpected players come into the fold.

  45. Palatypus

    Saw that phone. Saw that hand.

  46. Allen M.

    I loved the reminder today seeing the positional value chart. QB in a tier by itself. Then EDGE, DT, OT, CB.

    “Using this cost analysis of the top-ten highest-paid players, we can get positional value tiers (that at least applies to the top-ten):

    1- QB
    2- Edge (DE), DT, LT, CB, RT
    3- S, LB, TE, LG, RB, RG, C”


    • Allen M.

      This makes me wonder if there is any chance we draft an OT (RT) with the idea of kicking Lucas inside? Solves OG and Lucas was a third rounder to begin with. That said, I’m happy with Lucas but two mean, maulers on the right side would be pretty awesome. One Way or another. This would only be the case of we are gifted a Darnell Wright, Broderick Jones type at 20, of course.

  47. Robert Green

    Maybe this has been run up the flag pole but I’ll ask it anyway. Do you think Philly would trade 10 & 30 for #5 and take Jalen Carter if available there? I think I’d take that deal…

  48. Paul R

    Call me Old Fashion but I think Pete and John won’t draft Richardson at 5 or 20 because of the old “QB Rules” for drafting a quarterback in Round 1:

    Be a three-year starter (Nope)
    Be a senior in college (Nope)
    Graduate from college (Nope)
    Start 30 games (Nope)
    Win 23 games (Nope)
    Post a 2-1 touchdown-to-interception ratio (Nope)
    Complete at least 60% of passes thrown (Nope)

    My own new rule. Score Higher than 85% on S2 Score (Nope)

    So, hard pass on Richardson in the 1st

    • Rob Staton

      Nobody uses the old rules any more

    • dregur

      I was curious and looked at the best QB’s in the game right now and see if they passed that test for first round QB’s when they were drafted:

      Patrick Mahomes: Nope
      Josh Allen: Nope
      Aaron Rodgers: Nope
      Joe Burrow: Nope
      Matthew Stafford: Nope
      Justin Herbert: Technically yes.
      Lamar Jackson: Nope
      Tua Tagovailoa: Nope
      Trevor Lawrence: Nope
      Justin Fields: Nope
      Daniel Jones: Nope
      Kyler Murray: Nope
      Ryan Tannehill: Nope.
      Jared Goff: Nope
      Kenny Pickett: Yes
      Sam Darnold: Nope
      Mac Jones: Nope
      Marcus Mariota: Nope
      Baker Mayfield: Yes

      WHat’s that mean? The old rules mean absolutely nothing. Good job also arbitrarily cutting it at 85% on results we don’t even know are true.

      • dregur

        Okay “best” ended up being most of the starting QB’s in the league, but my point still stands.

        • dregur

          Also projected 1st Round QB’s:

          Anthony Richardson: As you pointed out, nope.
          Bryce Young: Nope
          CJ Stroud: Nope
          Will Levis: Nope

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