Early mock drafts have the Seahawks mostly taking defensive backs and offensive linemen.
With the conclusion of Senior Bowl week, the most significant of the college all-star games, it’s a good time to review some of the more notable mock drafts — most of which have been updated in the last few days — and which player they have the Seahawks selecting in the first round with the No. 26 overall pick.
I’ve also added my own thought after each pick as to how that player might fit with Seattle.
What Kiper said: The Seahawks like big corners, and Tankersley (6-1, 190) fits their style as a guy who could hold up opposite Richard Sherman, and DeShawn Shead‘s knee injury opens up a spot. Tankersley had nine interceptions over his last two seasons and was a big part of the Tigers’ success. Seattle will be in the market for offensive linemen, too, but I don’t have much first-round talent available here at No. 26. There’s still a long time until draft day, however.
My take: It’s hard to argue anything Kiper wrote. The Seahawks cannot assume Shead will be ready for the 2017 season and also haven’t had great success dipping into the free agent pool for immediate help at cornerback (Cary Williams, Antoine Winfield). So drafting a young cornerback who could maybe help immediately but could also be developed for down the road if that luxury allows makes a ton of sense.
What Jeremiah wrote: In 2016, the Seahawks used a top pick on an offensive lineman (OT Germain Ifedi), and I’d expect them to do the same thing in this year’s draft. Bolles is a very athletic pass protector who shows some nastiness in the running game.
My take: Bolles, who left a year eligibility, played left tackle for the Utes, a spot where Seattle will undoubtedly look to add competition this year. George Fant started the final nine games at that spot, and while coach Pete Carroll said he liked the progression of Fant and is excited to see the leap in improvement he could make from year one to year two, that shouldn’t be interpreted as the Seahawks doing nothing in the off-season to add to the offensive line.
What Brooks wrote: The Seahawks could solve their tackle issues by shifting Germain Ifedi to the outside. Taking a big, physical guard would provide them with the flexibility to do so. Feeney established himself as one of the top interior blockers in the draft with a solid practice week at the Senior Bowl.
My take: FWIW, the Seahawks have insisted there is no plan to move Ifedi outside anytime soon. But plans can change. And even if they don’t want to move Ifedi, adding another guard at some point in the draft makes a ton of sense.
What Zierlein wrote: Seattle is always looking for athletes and this guy is one of the elite ones in the 2017 draft. Melifonwu is still raw, but he could be drafted as Kam Chancellor’s eventual replacement or even as a press-and-trail corner in the Seahawks’ defense.
My take: At a listed 6-4, 219, he definitely fits Seattle’s “big safety” mold. Both of Seattle’s backup safeties are free agents — Kelcie McCray unrestricted and Steven Terrell restricted. And after the injuries this season to Earl Thomas and Chancellor, Seattle seems likely to want to upgrade the young depth behind those two players.
Garett Bolles, OT, Utah
What Kadar said: Again, this is a repeat selection (from an earlier mock draft) but it just makes sense. Seattle’s need on the offensive line is so dire that it doesn’t matter that they’re taking the third tackle off the board.
My take: The Seahawks’ offensive line needs are pretty obvious to all.
Marlon Humphrey, CB, Alabama
What Rang wrote: The Seahawks prioritize length and physicality over speed at cornerback. Humphrey — the son of former Broncos first-round running back Bobby Humphrey — has all three. The speedy 6-1, 195-pound redshirt sophomore surrendered some big plays (including Washington’s only touchdown in the Peach Bowl), but he plays with the confident, aggressive style Carroll prefers.
My take: If the Seahawks do take a cornerback in the first round it will break from the team’s recent precedent. Despite having assembled one of the best secondaries in NFL history under Carroll, the team has never taken a cornerback higher than the fourth round since he arrived in 2010 — Walter Thurmond, in the fourth round in 2010. Since then, Seattle has not taken a cornerback higher than the fifth round. But team needs and what appears to be a good crops of cornerbacks could change that this year.
What Bruglar wrote: The Seahawks are getting by with the bodies they have on the offensive line, but that doesn’t mean Seattle shouldn’t be looking for upgrades. Lamp can probably survive at tackle in the NFL, but he might be a Pro Bowl guard with his square-blocking skill-set and stubborn mentality.
My take: If the Seahawks made this move, they could have an all-Western Kentucky left side of the line with Lamp and Fant. Or possibly have Lamp — who played primarily left tackle at WKU — compete with Fant. Regardless, the scouting the team did last year on Fant undoubtedly has the Seahawks already well-versed in Lamp’s career, as well.
What Cherepinsky wrote: Jabrill Peppers may not seem like a logical pick at first glance, but I think it makes a lot of sense, and I have to credit e-mailer Yu N. for the great suggestion. The Seahawks could really use a versatile player like Peppers; they have numerous issues, all of which he could address. Cornerback Deshawn Shead suffered a torn ACL in the loss to the Falcons, and because the Seahawks play a lot of nickel, Peppers could be used in those situations. He could also be the third linebacker in base formations, as Michael Morgan is heading for free agency. Plus, there’s the obvious, which would be the depth he’d provide if either Kam Chancellor or Earl Thomas suffered injuries again. Peppers would help in the return game as well, allowing Tyler Lockett to focus more on offense.
My take: This is an incredibly intriguing idea for all the reasons mentioned above, and if the Seahawks really are docked their second round pick, using the first-rounder on a player who could fill multiple immediate roles would make a lot of sense. Peppers’ draft stock will be interesting to watch throughout because for all he did in college, some have pointed to his lack of turnover production as a possible red flag.
What they wrote: No matter how things shake out the Seattle Seahawks need to use this pick on an offensive lineman. The lack of talent in the trenches had cost the Seahawks wins in each of the past two seasons. It has also taken its toll on the health of Russell Wilson.Wisconsin’s Ryan Ramczyk is an inexperienced but highly talented left tackle prospect. He began his college career at Junior college but really stood out in his first year in the Big 10.Ramczyk is a fluid athlete who can protect the edge and mirror the pass rush.His experience at Wisconsin will help him fit in with the Seahawks who like to run the football. Ramczyk may go through some growing pains early in his career, but he’d immediately be the most talented lineman on the roster.Another offensive line target would be Ohio State’s Pat Elflein. He’s a versatile player who has experience playing both center and guard. This versatility would allow the Seahawks to shuffle things around to get the best 5 players in the starting lineup. Elflein also fits because he’s a physical player who excels at generating a push off the line. He’d immediately help improve Seattle’s run game.
My take: Several mocks have had Seattle taking Ramczyk, whose background in a lot of ways fits the Seahawks’ profile — he’s noted for his athleticism and has just one year playing at the FBS level after beginning his career at Division III University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point. He also is slated to have hip surgery and likely will not participate at the Combine or at his Pro Day, which might give some teams drafting higher up slight reason to pause.