A team that had won nine games combined in the two years before the arrival of the general manager and coach has averaged 10 wins a year since.
The play on the field pretty much speaks loudly enough when assessing the Seahawks’ performance in the draft room since 2010 when John Schneider took over as general manager and Pete Carroll as coach.
A team that had won nine games combined in the two years before their arrival has averaged 10 victories a year since. The Seahawks reached the past two Super Bowls and won the 2014 game.
The duo will try to further that success this year when the NFL draft is held April 30-May 2. The Seahawks will have 11 picks (barring trades).
They have a tough history to live up to, though.
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The Seahawks have made 48 picks during five drafts in the Schneider/Carroll era.
Getting three starters in one draft generally is considered a success. Last year, 15 players of those 48 selected by Schneider/Carroll were full-time NFL starters (14 with the Seahawks and receiver Golden Tate, now with Detroit).
Averaging 2.5 Pro Bowl players drafted per five years also is considered good. The Seahawks have drafted six Pro Bowlers in those five years.
Here’s a closer look at each draft of the Schneider/Carroll era:
• Total picks: Nine.
• Still with team: Four (Russell Okung, Earl Thomas, Kam Chancellor, Anthony McCoy).
• Best pick: Okung (No. 6 overall) and Thomas (14th) were considered probable starters, if not stars. The real gem came in the fifth round with Chancellor, whose size left many draft analysts wondering what position he would play in the NFL. Chancellor quickly showed he could be a safety and began the Seahawks’ reputation for unearthing stars in the middle to late rounds.
• Worst pick: Hard to find much to criticize from a draft in which the first four players became starters — Okung, Thomas, Tate and cornerback Walter Thurmond. Defensive end E.J. Wilson, taken six spots before Chancellor, saw action in just two games with the Seahawks in 2010 and never played again.
• Retro-grade: This was a highly rated class at the time — ESPN draft analyst Mel Kiper Jr. gave it an A, for instance — and if anything, only looks better now.
• Total picks: Nine.
• Still with the team: Two (K.J. Wright, Richard Sherman).
• Best pick: The Seahawks’ best picks were in the middle — Wright, taken in the fourth round, and Sherman in the fifth, 154th overall. Sherman, though, not only is the best pick in this draft but one of the best in franchise history, if not the NFL (one NFL.com story recently called Sherman the best selection in Seahawks history).
Seattle also drafted Byron Maxwell in the sixth round and Malcolm Smith in the seventh.
• Worst pick: The Seahawks surprised some with their pick of James Carpenter in the first round, at No. 25 overall. Though Carpenter didn’t become a Pro Bowler, he did leave Seattle having been part of two starting Super Bowl offensive lines. Not so for third-rounder John Moffitt, who was out of the NFL before he’d played three years.
• Retro-grade: This group got pretty poor grades at the time. Kiper, for instance, gave it a D-plus and said the Seahawks’ “sense of value was questionable.’’
Four key members of the team’s first Super Bowl-winning defense, though, means the legacy of this class being one of the best in Seahawks history is secure.
• Total picks: 10.
• Still with team: Seven (Bruce Irvin, Bobby Wagner, Russell Wilson, Robert Turbin, Jeremy Lane, J.R. Sweezy, Greg Scruggs).
• Best pick: If Sherman is the best pick in franchise history, Wilson isn’t far behind.
And remember he was the sixth quarterback taken that year after Andrew Luck, Robert Griffin III, Ryan Tannehill, Brandon Weeden and Brock Osweiler.
• Worst pick: Really hard to find a truly bad selection with each of the first four playing key roles on a two-time Super Bowl team — Irvin, Wagner, Wilson and Turbin — with Lane, Sweezy and Scruggs grabbed in the sixth and seventh rounds.
You can maybe quibble a little whether Irvin has lived up to first-round status.
But that’s about it.
• Retro-grade: This was another class universally panned — a consensus of grades compiled by Football Outsiders rated it 30th of 32 teams. Wilson and Wagner alone pretty much give it an A now.
• Total picks: 11.
• Still with team: Five (Christine Michael, Jordan Hill, Jesse Williams, Tharold Simon Luke Willson).
• Best pick: The Seahawks, intrigued by his speed, got Willson in the fifth round after he’d had an injury-plagued senior year at Rice.
Though Willson has had bouts of inconsistency, he’s been a key member of the offense the past two years.
Worst pick: Fourth-round selection Chris Harper, a receiver from Kansas State taken 123rd overall, was cut before the season began in 2013. Now with the Giants, Harper has played in four games in his career without making a catch.
• Retro-grade: Recall that the Seahawks traded their first-round pick to Minnesota for Percy Harvin. And that helped this class get pretty high grades at the time, as did the fact the Seahawks seemed to be getting some benefit of the doubt due to the success of the 2010-12 classes. But the jury remains out on this group. The last five players drafted now are with other teams. Harvin also is long gone, and it’s still unclear exactly what the Seahawks have in Michael.
• Total picks: Nine.
• Still with team: Seven (Paul Richardson, Justin Britt, Cassius Marsh, Kevin Norwood, Kevin Pierre-Louis, Jimmy Staten, Eric Pinkins).
• Best pick: The Seahawks hoped Britt, taken in the second round at No. 64 overall, could step into a starting spot at tackle, and he did just that, the only one in this group to become a full-time starter as a rookie.
• Worst pick: The top six picks remain with the Seahawks, and it’s too early to judge what they’ll become. The two who are gone are offensive lineman Garrett Scott and fullback Kiero Small. Call Scott the unluckiest so far of Seattle’s picks under Schneider and Carroll, as he was diagnosed with a heart condition shortly after the draft, did not play last season and recently was waived.
• Retro-grade: This class received fairly middling reviews — Kiper gave it a C-plus and NFL.com a C. And so far, this group has yet to disprove those assessments, though there is lots of time.