Monday, April 30, 2007

Grading the Seahawks draft -- it's an F!

Fuck. Me.

What a horrible, horrible draft weekend for the Seahawks. I don't know even know where to begin. We may have actually made our team WORSE in the last 72 hours. Strike that -- we definitely made our team worse.

Where to begin? The Darrell Jackson trade was a fiasco. Complete nightmare. Makes no sense. Before I woke up Saturday, I was thinking "Maybe, just maybe it'll be worth dealing him to move up in the second round and nab a top guard or TE." Instead, we dealt him for a 4th round pick -- a fucking 4th rounder! -- to our leading division rival that was desparate for WR help.

Again, I say: Fuck. Me.

But let's put aside Ruskell's temporary insanity for a moment. What about the picks themselves? Surely we addressed our gaping needs at guard and TE, right? Right?

No. No, we fucking didn't. We drafted a "project" player, Mansfield Wrotto, who switched from defensive line last year and is at least a year away from playing, even though Josh Beekman fell all the way to the 5th. And as for tight end -- we didn't draft one. At all. Even though Ben Patrick, a consensus third rounder, fell all the way to the 7th round.

And what about our first pick, cornerback Josh Wilson? He's fast. He fumbles a lot. He's really small (just like Jennings). But perhaps most importantly, virtually no one thought he'd go in the second round. We could have traded down -- see Seahawks Insider blog post on this item -- and still picked him up and some extra draft picks.

The lone bright spot was Brandon Mebane in the 3rd, a decent pick who helps address the need at DT (though Mebane is not without question marks). Other than that, I spent the whole weekend developing an ulcer. It's going to be fun watching Darrell Jackson torch us for 120 yards as he separates from rookie Josh Wilson.

I've got to go throw up now.


Blogger Jimmimoose said...

It wasn't as bad as all that, but I agree, this was a poor draft for the Hawks. Just bizarre selections at several different points. It felt like the Seattle Mariners had invaded the Hawks' offices for a day and decided to run things their way, without rhyme or reason. Ugh.

12:20 PM  
Blogger AJH said...

I don't want to fill the entire page with my Seahawks' opinion BUT, there is no possible way to know whether this is a horrible draft or a great draft. First of all, none of us watch enough college football or the combine footage which aired on the NFL Network last month. Second, even the guys who are paid to do that are wrong much of the time. 7th round pick Marques Colston, who is a stud, was passed over by every team at least 6 times. The best QB in football (Tom Brady) was a 6th round pick (as was Matt Hasselback).
My point is this: you could be right, you could be wrong. Take a deep breath, drink a warm glass of milk and step away from the ledge. At least wait until the season begins before you declare it a disaster.

Now, here's my opinion (which is also worth doo-doo but it's a free country): glad to see them pick up another CB. They lost too many games last year by giving up a big pass play. Hated watching Kelly Herndon (who is 30 years old). Like the kid from California. We desperately need help at DT. Hated to watch Frank gore us up the middle.
Taking projects at OG and DE was disappointing but I understand the thinking: rather than taking a safe choice who could contribute right away, they gambled on guys with big upside, who could bust completely or become major contributors. It's good to diversify your holdings.
Next, they took Ernie Kent's boy from Oregon. He is a great athlete: track, hoops and football. He's relatively new to football and has a big, big upside. Could bulk up and become a poor man's Tony Gonzales at TE.
They also signed Joe Newton, a TE from Oregon State.

Basically, it boils down to this: I trust the staff that took Lora Tatupu and LeRoy Hill (even though they looked like dumb choices). Let's at least wait and see.

1:05 PM  
Blogger Jimmimoose said...

You're right in that there's no way we can know right now, that's true. The Hawks were slammed a couple of years ago for reaching for Lofa and a others, and that turned out to be one of the best drafts in team history.

However, while we can't identify what the actual picks will be contributing in a few years, we can identify where the current roster is weak, and those weaknesses weren't addressed in the draft. That's why I'm apprehensive.

We didn't have a first round pick at all, so right off the bat it wasn't going to be the most amazing draft ever. But losing D-Jack for a late-4th round pick, to a division rival? That just doesn't make logical sense. We should've just held onto him, or traded him for a pick in next year's draft, or some such.

This draft didn't reflect the needs of the team, in my opinion. I don't think we killed ourselves, I'm not freaking out, but I think there were opportunities for better picks.

However, you're right, this organization has earned some leeway in cases like this. There were a couple of personnel moves last year that I thought were REALLY suspect, but they've shown that they can handle the draft.

1:24 PM  
Blogger Ben said...

First, credit to ajh (Alex) for correctly predicting that the Hawks would target a CB early.

Second, credit to my brother jimmimoose for providing a cogent argument as to why this draft was, er, concerning, to say the least. It's true that we won't know for many years whether this was a great draft. But what we do know is that (a) Darrell Jackson was traded not because of his performance, but because he's griped about his contract; (b) we drafted a project guard -- which might make some sense if our starting RG wasn't 37 years old and on his last legs -- even though the front office has acknowleged that Beekman could have started right away (but has less "upside"); and (c) our strategy of trading away first round picks -- thereby mortgaging the future to win now -- seems directly at odds with our drafting strategy of building long term (and ignoring our immediate needs).

Tim Ruskell is a savvy evaluator of talent. I'd like nothing more than to eat my words in September. But after losing Hutchinson, overpaying for Branch and Burleson, resigning a hobbling Alexander, and dealing our best wideout for peanuts, I think it's fair to start wondering what the future holds for this franchise. I could see us slipping to 3rd in the NFC West very easily this year.

I'll take that milk now.

3:29 PM  

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