Honey Badger Could Be Sweet Nectar for Seattle
Going into this 2013 off season, the Seattle Seahawks had few gaps to fill. It was made clear that Pete Carroll wanted to improve the pass rush. Their actions in free agency reflect that, grabbing Michael Bennett as an interior threat and Cliff Avril for the outside.
Hypothetically, you can now scratch pass rush off the list. The position we would look to next would be wide receiver, but Percy Harvin answered that call – and then some.
That leads us to the nickel corner.
In my mind this was Seattle’s most glaring need. Our defense was incredible on downs 1, 2, and 4. But on 3rd down, they gave up the first 38.71% of the time – good for 17th in the league. Far from elite.
This was a frustratingly common occurrence, and several different issues led to it.
You could blame the lack of pass rush. You could point out the linebacker’s zone coverage skills – or lack thereof. In which case I believe will be addressed in the draft – fingers crossed for Khaseem Greene. (mock draft here)
Or you could point to the nickel corner position – specifically Marcus Trufant.
Tru has been a fan favorite in Seattle for his entire career, and I especially love the former Coug. But it’s sad to say his greatest years are behind him. This was evident when they moved him to the inside. His decreasing speed and agility allowed the little slot receivers to run circles around him.
He was simply too old to keep up with those shifty bastards.
This position is thin, and must be addressed.
Enter Honey Badger.
Tyrann Mathieu has killed his draft stock due to his off-field issues and disappointing combine results. This will likely drop him to at least the second or third round, giving the Hawks the opportunity to snag him.
“I don’t think he’s going to go in the first two rounds, that’s my gut, and from talking to teams, it’s kind of a third or fourth-round pick. That’s what I’m hearing,” Mike Mayock On NFL Network
Why would he be a good fit for Seattle?
Well for one, we know how Pete love’s his troubled stars – and throwing your college career away just to puff the magic dragon gives evidence of troubles.
Also, the legion of boom is all about intensity and swagger. Mathieu didn’t earn the nickname Honey Badger for his kind words and gentle spirit.
Mathieu made a brief career at LSU by making big plays on defense and special teams – whether it was taking a punt to the house, sacking the quarterback, or laying out a big hit to jar the ball loose.
136 tackles, 11 forced fumbles, 6 sacks and 4 interceptions in his two seasons explains the reasoning behind his Heisman candidacy.
He isn’t the best cover corner, but his quickness and hit power form him into an ideal nickelback.
All of these reasons garner the idea that he would fit well in the Seattle scheme – but for icing on the cake, think of this.
Seattle has added a more aggressive defensive coordinator in Dan Quinn. Quinn will likely bring more blitzing packages to the table than the more conservative Gus Bradley. This should improve the pass rush, but imagine the added element of Mathieu blitzing from the nickel position. Can you ask for a better third-and-long threat?
I’m not saying we should reach on him, but if he is available in the third round, take him Schneider.
Still not convinced? Then sit back and enjoy the show.