Sunday, 26 April 2009

Thoughts ahead of day two

The big news from Seattle is that Leroy Hill has been stripped of the franchise tag, essentially making him a free agent. Reports suggest the team will attempt to re-sign the linebacker, but I think the writing is on the wall here. I have mixed feelings on this. One of the justifications often made for signing Aaron Curry was that he filled the hole left by Julian Peterson. Today, that hole remains. Stay tuned for developments.

As things stand the Seahawks will not pick again until the first pick in round five (137th overall). Some big names remain on the board. A possible run on tight ends never occurred in round two - although his may be how the third begins with Denver having taken Richard Quinn (TE, North Carolina) with the final pick on Saturday. Jared Cook, Shawn Nelson, James Casey and Cornelius Ingram are still on the board.

Nobody took a gamble on Michael Johnson (DE, Georgia Tech). He has the physical tools to be great but lacks consistency. I wouldn't be surprised if St Louis took him with the second pick in round three. Jamon Meredith (OT, South Carolina) is going to provide someone with great value sooner or later. Other lineman I'd expect to go soon - Troy Kropog, Gerald Cadogan, Jonathan Luigs and Antoine Caldwell. Amongst the others falling, D.J. Moore (CB, Vanderbilt) and Jarron Gilbert (DE, San Jose State).

Barring any further trades, what will the Seahawks do with the 5th round pick? I think they'll look for someone who can make some kind of contribution in 2009. That could mean adding a running back, James Davis (RB, Clemson) and Javon Ringer (RB, Michigan State) might be possibilities. There are some good safeties left on the board, would they consider Derek Pegues (FS, Miss State) if available? Perhaps they will take another linebacker, Corey Smith from Cincinnati would be a good scheme fit. Trying to predict a fifth round pick at this stage is like trying to guess the lottery numbers, but let me know who you're hoping they take.

Here's my thoughts on Seattle's day one trade. I like the move to essentially get a 2010 first rounder for a 3rd and 4th pick in this year's draft. However, I hear two things I don't like. Firstly, I'm not buying that next year's draft is much better than this one. That remains to be seen and I'm not convinced Sam Bradford and Colt McCoy are better than Stafford and Sanchez. Secondly, don't count on Denver gifting Seattle a top 10 pick by performing poorly in 2009. They play in a weak division, Kyle Orton is a solid quarter back with some potent weapons at Mile High and Knowshon Moreno is my shout for rookie of the year.

Pete Prisco gives his day one grades. The Seahawks get a B+ for taking Aaron Curry and a B- for trading up to grab Max Unger in the second round.

Don Banks gives his first day thoughts. "Sanchez is a winner in all of this too, because if you're going to hit it big as an NFL quarterback, would you and your wallet rather do it in New York or Seattle?" Ouch.

Mel Kiper and Todd McShay dissect the first day. Mel gives Al Davies an F grade and I think that's being generous. I'd consider plumping for the little used 'Unclassified' grade, for sheer incompetence.


Michael Steffes said...

Only reason I think the Broncos pick will be top ten...

Well lets see. They lost their QB, there best WR should be suspended for the first quarter of the year.

Oh yeah, and they forget to get any defensive linemen, where they had ZERO Nfl caliber starters.

KC, OAK, and SD may make up a weak division, but they will all run the football next year.

And as much as I know you love Knowshon, and Richard Quinn, Didn't they sign 4 RBs this offseason? And dont they have Scheffler and Graham?

Bad mojo working in the mile high city? The fans are pissssssssed!

Rob Staton said...

I can see your angle Mike, but I think the Broncos will do better than most people expect in 2009. Orton showed his ability to keep an offense ticking over in Chicago last year and with Knowshon Moreno, they have a running back who can become one of the best in the business. Defensively, they still have question marks. It could make or break the team, but Robert Ayers and Alphonso Smith are solid additions.

Tampa Curt said...

Rob, with respect to taking the franchise tag off of Hill. There may be a scenario where Ruskell sees a LB in the draft and hoping he is still there either in the 4th or when we draft in the 5th. With a quality LB out there in the free market they may not draft a LB. So who knows maybe Ruskell may have targeted a LB in the later rounds.
Dangerous game if that is the case. I was hoping they would take off the franchise tag when they got a deal reached. If Hill really wants one in Seattle that is. Hill may have been playing hardball when he should have been playing softball.
I don't think we know the whole story.

Michael Steffes said...

Orton often relied on defense and special teams to carry that team. He will have no such luxury in Denver.

Rob Staton said...

I agree Curt, I'm guessing we don't know the full story. This is pure speculation - but what if the situation with Hill changed this week and the two parties essentially could never come to an agreement? This could be a reactionary move to drafting Aaron Curry, or drafting Curry could have been a reactionary move to the situation with Hill.

Rob Staton said...

Mike, I believe Chicago's defense was ranked 21st overall last year and for me, it took a big backwards step in 2008. Orton posted respectable figures (2972 yards, 18/12 TD/INT). I think he managed the situation well without ever doing anything to spectacular. I believe he also played a number of games later in the year injured. His weapons were limited in Chicago, the team relied on Matt Forte even in the passing game and aside from that used a return specialist and a young tight end. I think considering everything he did well. Josh McDaniels offense will cater to his strengths and look to eliminate his weaknesses. I think they have better weapons on offense and as I've said - I am so high on Knowshon Moreno I expect big things from him.

The big question marks remain on defense. That will make or break the Broncos but I like Robert Ayers and Alphonso Smith. If the Broncos defense can match Chicago's last year, I wouldn't be surprised if they emulated the 9-7 record, perhaps stretched to 10-6.

It's all speculation at this point because we have no idea what will happen. Who could have predicted the 1-15 Dolphins would win the AFC East in 2008? I think a lot of people see it as a forgeone conclusion the Broncos will be awful in 2009, I think they will do better than people think.

Patrick said...

I'm hoping this means Derrick Brooks could definitely be on Seattle's radar. I'm not sure how well he would fit, but I've always been a fan. I also am still holding out hope for Warrick Dunn as well. I say Jets can have Sanchez. I never liked him and I'm thrilled we chose Curry over him. A few years from now, we'll see who gets the last laugh. As for Denver, I do think Orton will manage the team fine, but their division should be more competitive this year. The Chargers are always a challenge and Kansas City has upgraded a lot of talent. Not to mention, I know Denver plays the NFC North so Pittsburgh and Baltimore should definitely give them a run for their money. The biggest factor for me is just how inexperienced their new coach is. I hear a lot of Denver falls are fuming over his picks yesterday, especially with Brian Orakpo still on the board at #12. I like Moreno, but I think Orakpo was more of a need.

Rob Staton said...

I'd take Moreno over Orakpo every day of the week. The Broncos fans will soon change their minds if they make a good start to 2009.

Anonymous said...

Who thinks our 4 seventh round picks will yield some great talent?

Anonymous said...

Great move by Seattle! Curry by all reports is the "best lb prospect in 10 years."
Hill no longer fits in! In today's "NFL there is no need for three high payed linebackers unless you play a 3-4 or have a linebacker who can play on the DL.
Insiders claim that the sea hawks d played just as well with out the often injured Hill!