A Pick In The First Round?
Analyzing who the Seattle Seahawks, led by the dynamic duo of Pete Carroll and John Schneider, might pick in the upcoming 2016 NFL draft is nearly an impossible task. These guys have their own, unique philosophy about the draft and who can really argue with it given their success?
The Seahawks, under Carroll and Schneider, just love to trade down. They rarely make first round draft picks. You might think the Seahawks have a glaring need at corner or an even worse need somewhere on the offensive line but I’m going to tell you right here and now–
I seriously doubt the Seahawks will make a selection in the first round.
It’s been four years since the Seahawks drafted Bruce Irvin in the first round which is the last time they used a pick that early. It would also appear that the Seahawks have little to no interest in retaining Irvin for the 2016 season. The year prior, it was James Carpenter getting the call in the first round of the 2011 draft.
Is Carpenter still on the roster?
The rookie year for Carroll, the 2010 draft, the Seahawks actually had a pair of first rounders and they wound up with Russell Okung and Earl Thomas. Thomas is the only first round pick by Carroll and Schneider that has had staying power. The rest—dust in the wind, dude.
The Seahawks won’t make their pick at spot number 26. If they do, I’ll be stunned. That doesn’t mean that the Seahawks don’t have needs. Like I said at the top, offensive line and corner are where I expect to see the Seahawks make their first pick, albeit in the second round at the earliest.
At corner the Seahawks are likely looking at Eli Apple. At 6’1 he fits into the “taller corner” makeup that Carroll covets and he’s very familiar with press coverage defense as Ohio State runs a similar look to that of the Seahawks. He’s also a guy that likes to get physical with receivers, something else I’m sure the Hawks have noticed.
As well as Apple might fit the bill for the Seahawks need at corner, I’m not sure he’ll be there in the first six picks or so of the second round. Sure, the Seahawks could use their first round pick at 26 and safely nab Apple, but if they can trade down to mid to high 30s pick area, he just might still be there.
Another guy the Seahawks will probably look at is Jalen Mills. Mills possesses the athleticism and speed that Carroll likes at the corner position. He also has the flexibility of being a good safety, and has shown he can be a solid contributor (a gunner replacement for Ricardo Lockette perhaps) on special teams as well.
Mill’s issues are he’s not as tall (maybe 6’0) or as heavy (189lbs) as the Seahawks would prefer. He also has had some off the field legal issues revolving around domestic violence, a very touchy subject in the NFL these days. The Seahawks have never seemed to shy away from players with legal issues, however.
Mills probably goes in the latter half of the second round. If the Seahawks trade down, he’ll be there in the second and might even fall to the third round.
2016 could easily become “the year of the tackle” in the NFL draft. I’m predicting as many as five tackles to go in the first round. What that tells me is that there could still be premium talent available in the second round, you know, down where the Seahawks stock pile picks.
We’ll start the discussion with Shon Coleman. He’s the guy that either is going to be the fifth tackle taken in the first round or the first tackle taken in the second round. Wherever he falls, he certainly looks the part at 6’5 and 306lbs.
Coleman is a guy that loves to be an enforcer and a physical presence on the line. That’s something the Seahawks have lacked. They need the nasty because they haven’t really had the nasty since the days of Breno Giacomini. Say what you want about Breno, but he was the nasty.
The Seahawks could probably easily nab Coleman if they pick at 26. That’s not their way, as you know. If they can trade down and and get him around 38 or so, they could wind up with a steal thanks to the depth of tackles in this year’s draft.
The last guy I’ll mention is Germain Ifedi. With this guy’s size and a name like Germain, he really needs to be nicknamed the Berlin Wall. If the Seahawks can gobble him up in the later part of the second round it will be a good pick for them.
Ifedi is an absolute house at 6’6 and 326lbs. Ifedi’s physical size would make it tough for even the best pass rushers to try to speed around him. I’m sure Russell Wilson wouldn’t mind an improvement on that line that helped nullify the best pass rushers in the game.
The negatives on Ifedi is that he can be undisciplined at times and he comes with some injury concerns surrounding his knees. Still, with Tom Cable seemingly able to coach ketchup out of onions it would be interesting to see what he could do with a product that is more complete than any he has been given before.