Sunday, 14 February 2010

Long term vs Short term

By Rob Staton
Long term thinking or a short term shot in the arm? Do you use the 2010 draft to plan ahead or do you use it to enhance what you already have and try to get an immediate boost? Is it a combination of the two or can you not afford to think like this - is it too manufactured when a draft board needs to be respected purely based on BPA? What are the potential pitfalls of either?

Let's say the Seahawks go quarterback and left tackle in round one. This would very much be a long term solution, building an offensive core for tomorrow. However, Pete Carroll's new regime would also be left facing a 2010 season that could potentially be described as a 'lame duck'. A holding position until the rookie's are ready. Current starters at either position would be left holding the fort - and it could lead to disharmony between the present and the future. Even if everyone acted very professional about the situation, you'd be asking the same troops who struggled in 2009 to suddenly produce the goods if you wanted to enjoy a competitive season upon your (Carroll's) return to the NFL.

Of course, even taking that into account, the long term benefit that there's a direction when ageing veterans do retire - is huge. The old adage goes, "fail to prepare and be prepared to fail." The Seahawks have to embrace that the Hasselbeck/Jones/Alexander era will soon be a distant (yet fond) memory. Finding the next batch of franchise players and preparing them sufficiently would likely be welcomed by fans, pundits and coaches alike.

The short term solution doesn't possess that kind of support. It's often seen as the quick-fix. Drafting a running back early has it benefits in that there's a short learning curve - and the Seahawks do need a running back. However, it's unlikely to win you a post season berth consistently if you continue to neglect key positions that may need a year or two to develop and prosper.

Having said that - if the Seahawks want to avoid another bitterly disappointing season in the mold of 2008/2009, they have to find some form of immediate contribution. Whether that's a pass rusher who can finally get to the quarterback, a running back capable of keeping a defense honest or a wide out who gives Matt Hasselbeck a true #1 threat. Transitioning from one era to another needs to be planned with tomorrow in mind - but introducing inexperienced young men into a losing culture is never a good idea.

These are all questions facing Pete Carroll and his new regime. If he were to draft Jimmy Clausen at #6 and Bryan Bulaga at #14, many would rejoice at locking up two key positions for the future (quarterback and offensive tackle). However, would these same fans remain supportive if the Seahawks struggled to another 4-5 win season? What impact would drafting those prospects have on incumbent starters like Matt Hasselbeck and harmony between currents veterans and the younger future?

If the new regime decided to draft Derrick Morgan and C.J. Spiller, some fans would (perhaps correctly) ask where is the long term planning? What is the plan post-Hasselbeck considering his contract year status and age? But would these same fans not appreciate it if the more short term thinking got the new coaching staff up and running on the front foot, creating a platform for younger prospects to brought in perhaps in a better (winning?) culture and atmosphere?

Not that a plan like this was ever likely to be formed, but if you draft one pick for the future and one for tomorrow - do you run the risk of making a token effort that really neither does enough for the future nor enough to win now?

Ultimately decisions will be made based on talent and how the front office set up their draft board. But if there are prospects bunched together of a similar grading, this short or long term thinking could become a discussion point. What do you think the Seahawks have to consider going into this crucial draft for the franchise? Let me know in the comments section.

38 comments:

Bernie Zimmermann said...

As was made evident by Jim Mora's firing, this is a "what have you done for me lately?" league. Seattle's fan base is tired of losing seasons. People say we need to "rebuild," but what they really mean is that we need to start winning, and soon.

I also think there's another dimension to this. You can go into the draft thinking you want to build for the future or you want to build to win this coming season, but either way, you have to play the hand you're dealt in the draft. If building for the future means drafting a quarterback and a left tackle, but it's a particular poor draft for those positions, it makes no sense to shoot yourself in the foot just to make a statement about your long-term intentions.

Aaron Curry was a good example of the draft affecting our choices last year, and not us dictating our choices based on our biggest needs.

I think we'll see a lot of the weaker positions addressed throughout the draft, but I don't think the first round will be as much about our future vs. next season as it will be about getting the best players available to help make our team stronger period.

Anthony said...

I think there's hope, if not expectation, that the Seahawks under PC will do better than 5-11 next year. At the same time, I've seen suggestions that they throw the year in order to draft Locker in 2011.

I've also seen various opinions on Hasselbeck, anything from him being done to him being good for another 3 years. He's not going to survive that another year like the one we've just had, let alone 3.

There's also FA to consider. I'm not sure the 'hawks can afford to blow one of their top 3 draft picks on an RFA unless it's on someone that'll fill one of the real need positions and personally I'd prefer to seem them keep those picks anyway. That leaves UFA which likely isn't going to fill too many holes.

I guess you could call all that the background to what I'd like to see us do in the draft.

LT is a must, doesn't matter who the QB is, Matt, Clausen or Locker, we need to find that long term replacement for Walt. Do we have to do it in the first round? That I'm not so sure of, Charles Brown might be a possibility at #40. As to RB, Spiller might get a lot of fans excited, myself included. Can we afford to draft him with so many other needs? Again, I don't know.

Wideout is the one I'd least like us to see draft with one of those top 3 picks, making sure our QB has time to throw has to come above finding someone to throw to. On that basis, my top three draft choices would be DE/DT, OT and RB, not necessarily in that order. That would leave us looking for a QB in the 2011 draft which might be rather costly to achieve.

However...

Brown isn't the only good 2nd round option available and as has been stated frequently, there's a lot of depth in this draft. I think we all know that we're at least 2 drafts away from our 2003-2007 form so the question I'm looking at is can we get more value for one of those 1st round picks this year by trading down, including picking up an extra 1st rounder for next year to give us a chance at Locker.

Anonymous said...

We traded Peterson for Redding to create a need at the possision with the most talent picking up the best prospect in the nation with the 4th pick last year.

Curry was the cant miss player from last the draft last year will benefit from the coach from LB Univ. I truly belive 2 out of our top 3 picks have to be OL.

Haden Clausen Price Dwyer any of these as the odd man out.

Would love to grab a power back a little latter as the seahawks need a grinder.

I like the question you raised Rob but I truly Belive the long term solution LT QB or as I prefer LT RT is the way to win now as well. Forsett can hit a hole, Butler is improving, Carlson can play, Schmitt is a beast, and Hasselback has another year if he has a line.

Our skill guys can do the job given a little more time.

Our defence will be much improved if there not on the field the whole game.

Vince Mulcahy said...

By now it's well known that the strength of this year's class is on the defensive side of the ball. It still comes to why fight the BPA? The hawks will not be competitive next year. Period. There are so many gaping holes its amazing we won 5 games last year. No one in the league expects PC to win 10 games, so why think short term and draft a play maker that provides no long term stability?

Defense is the long term winning solution. Build your core defense and you will always have hope for winning games, but if you can't stop a team then you have no chance.

DE, DT, S, CB, OT, RB in that order should be our consideration at 6, 14, and 40 and draft the BPA at those points.

Rob I disagree that DE would be short term thinking as it does take D-Linemen a few years to hit their prime and it is not unusual for a DE to play into his 30's.

We also need to stay away from FA (RFA or UFA) because of the salary cap issues that comes with it. Especially with the rookie salary cap that is being talked about. I would really like to see the Seahawks move away from society's view of "results now". Lets build long term and fill our holes by drafting the best prospects that can have impact if not now then the near future.

Vince Mulcahy said...

By now it's well known that the strength of this year's class is on the defensive side of the ball. It still comes to why fight the BPA? The hawks will not be competitive next year. Period. There are so many gaping holes its amazing we won 5 games last year. No one in the league expects PC to win 10 games, so why think short term and draft a play maker that provides no long term stability?

Defense is the long term winning solution. Build your core defense and you will always have hope for winning games, but if you can't stop a team then you have no chance.

DE, DT, S, CB, OT, RB in that order should be our consideration at 6, 14, and 40 and draft the BPA at those points.

Rob I disagree that DE would be short term thinking as it does take D-Linemen a few years to hit their prime and it is not unusual for a DE to play into his 30's.

We also need to stay away from FA (RFA or UFA) because of the salary cap issues that comes with it. Especially with the rookie salary cap that is being talked about. I would really like to see the Seahawks move away from society's view of "results now". Lets build long term and fill our holes by drafting the best prospects that can have impact if not now then the near future.

Charles said...

I have a question regarding RFAs. Say one gets a high tender of a 1st and 3rd round pick. Is there anything in there that states it has to be just that 1st round pick no matter what? or could you do something like our first for their first and the player?

I'm asking because if denver tenders brandon marshall, they have what the 11th pick? We could trade the 6th for the 11th, and maybe pick up a player like brandon marshall. But if something like that isnt possible, theres hardly any chance a team who picks above the 20th pick would even consider it. The value for the higher picks is just so much greater than the lower picks especially in the first round.

Rob Staton said...

Charles - teams can work out deals as they wish. If a team puts a tender on a player, another team has a chance to sign them but it costs whatever value the team has placed on him. But it doesn't stop two teams coming together and saying - we'll trade you for a different deal. As an example - New England put the franchise tag on Matt Cassel last year, which would've cost a team first round picks to sign him. Instead, the Pats did a deal with KC for less.

Jakes said...

Rob,

As important as wins are in the NFL, the last coach & gm of the 'hawks lost their jobs because of "how" they won & lost games last year. Seahawks fans as a whole will support a team that is competitive, if we can see some progress & leadership. How we lost last year, especially in the last half of the season was embarrassing. The team was not prepared to be on the field at the NFL level.

I'm waiting to see the identity for the team that the new management provides. If it was a good/easy situation, the last guys wouldn't have lost their jobs.

It seems that the consistently competitive teams in the the league know who they are and the coaches make as much or more of an impact on the win/loss column than the players. Every player in the NFL is talented, definitely not equally, but the best coaches figure out how to use each player's talent to make the biggest impact in the outcome of the game.

So it will be very interesting to see the players brought in to create this new identity. Like your current mock draft, us taking Bryant at 6 would not be something I'd like to see. However, if he's the best player to create mismatches & allow the new coaches to establish an identity so be it. I just want the players added to have a positive impact.

Anonymous said...

I mostly agree with Vince above. I want the team to start acting like a perennial winner and draft largely BPA, even if that means we improve slowly and aren't a playoff team for 2-3 years. The strength of this years draft is Dline and Dbacks. I hope we get Berry at 6 and Price or Morgan at 14. I've seen Price much later in mocks but I believe he's much closer to McCoy/Suh in talent than he is to Odrick, and a legit mid 1st round prospect. If we can trade down and still get Price, even better. I hope we either trade down from 40 or even do like last year and trade that pick for a 2011 1st rounder. I think the 2011 QB class will be much stronger when all is said and done. 4th and 5th round picks on OT and RB. 6th and 7th on WR and OG. Plan to develop the O-line draftees for a couple years so they are starters in 2011 or 2012.

Kyle Rota said...

(Hey Vince!)

I feel that Seattle has to draft for the long term. For one, very few rookies hit the ground running as above-average starters. Aaron Curry was considered the most NFL-ready prospect in the draft (completely untrue in my opinion, but that's not the point) by most of the media analysts. He struggled with consistency early, mixing big hits and strips with poor coverage and discipline) before hitting the rookie wall, which is my 2nd point. That rookie wall hits a lot of guys, and relying on a player who is more-than-likely going to struggle down the stretch is not a recipe for postseason success.

Let's not forget that most coaches just don't like rookies. There are good reasons for this, half these guys are learning a system that is both completely new and requires them to do different things. ALL of them, except perhaps 2009 Seahawks rookies, are learning playbooks that are much more complex than what they executed in college. Not to mention the press obligations and general newness of being a well compensated NFL player. But you see time and time again, teams draft a player high and the coach doesn't use them a lot in their first season, whether justified or not.

The point? There is no guarantee that even 1st-round rookies are going to come in and solidify their position right away. Many of these players need time, especially since lots of 1st rounders are drafted on potential as much as production, and potential can take a couple years. For every player who has a huge rookie year, there are dozens who make only a small (or nonexistent) impact. Those are not the odds I'd like to play.

If you want to create a culture of winning and start things off with a more competitive team right away, doing it in the draft is just a bad strategy. Bringing in veterans is a much better way to do so, especially since we have so many holes even average players would be a relief at many positions. Now, that poses a new question (Go for the really good FA, or the average-to-slightly-above-average types) but, again, different topic.

As a general philosophy, even when not applied to the Seahawks, I can't get behind the immediate-impact route for most teams. Sure, there are a couple teams that may only be a piece away and can ignore the value of a player (like CJ Spiller) because they need a playmaker. Off the top of my head the Eagles, Colts, Cowboys, Minnesota if they ever figure out the QB situation, New England make up most of the list, though I'm sure I've forgotten a couple (the Saints are intentionally left off this list as they have a huge FA issue this off-season and still have holes on defense, even though the team overall is superb).

Oddly enough, those same teams generally don't look to plug holes with rookies and draft towards the future (Dallas is big exception in the list I created, though not all of their rookies are impact players that first year. I just believe they have excellent scouting). They tend to draft with an eye towards the future, so that when someone leaves, retires, or just stops performing, they have a 2nd or 3rd year player ready to step in and play at a very high level, rather than the overwhelmed-level they'd have played at as a rookie.

This doesn't mean rookies can't play their first year, or even start. However, the rookie who comes out and does a great job from the beginning is a rarity, and the well-made franchises typically don't rely on that. If we want to join them, we shouldn't either.

Rob Staton said...

Some excellent points (as usual) from Kyle.

Mr Fish said...

I just want to see some signs of progress.

I don't think it was the losses that had so many fans clamoring for Mora to be fired, as much as it was that the team seemed to be continuing the slide that had begun in the years before.

Not enough seemed to have been done to address the problems on the offensive line, and the defense still seemed too porous.

To make things worse, many thought Hasselbeck had developed a timidity after so many injuries and therefore that too many passing plays ended up in checkdowns for minimal gain. It had begun to dawn on many fans that the Hasselbeck era is ending, yet there is no clear successor waiting in the wings.

No, it wasn't the W-L record. It was that there was so little to pin our hopes on.

All we want is a reason to believe.

Vince Mulcahy said...

Kyle, long time no see :D

It's very true that the league's most dominant organizations don't draft for team needs now, but rather for the future. Unfortunately we don't have that luxury because of the age and limited skill that our current roster has. However we have the advantage of having the option to draft nearly every position (which is highlighted by Rob's extremely variant mocks).

The 2010 draft is so critical because we are in rebuilding mode, we have a completely new FO, and we brought in coaches that are going to implement new schemes. Not to mention that free agency, for the most part, is going to be completely non-existent so adding veteran leadership is going to be difficult. But I think we will be decent injecting youth (through the draft) because we do have some leaders on the team. Tatupu, Grant, Kerney on defense and Hass, and TJ on the offense.

Starting rookies won't be ideal but for most positions we can throw them in situational packages so they grow for a year and ask them to start full time in 2011 (assuming there is play!!!). I'm hoping that PC brings the same enthusiasm to Seattle that he did in USC so that he does build team chemistry within the locker room. In tough times or winning thats going to be his toughest job in the next year or two while rebuilding.

Anonymous said...

It's easy to whiff in round 1. I sniff whiff in the top 10.

These players hyped to the sky but have weaknesses. After the first two DT's, it's a crap shoot.

We need talent nearly everywhere and would benefit by trading down and getting extra picks.

Jeremy Brown said...

I honestly don't think this team can be turned into a winning team. Really, I don't want, just a winning team. I want a SuperBowl winning team. If that takes a couple of years to build and we make solid moves in FA, DRAFT and or trades, I welcome that. I have waited thirty years for them to win a SuperBowl I think I can wait 2-3 more if we progress in the process.

Jeremy Brown said...

Follow up: In the first line I meant to say in Carrol's first season.

Anonymous said...

Is it realistic to think that we can get Brandon Marshall to solve our #1 WR issue. Then I saw Bethea from Indy is a FA and he would solidify our secondary and give us a proven leader there. Then through the draft we get Morgan at 6 to help our QB pressure issue. Bologa OT Iowa at 14 to help our protection issue and finally Dwyer RB GT at 40 to solve our workhorse RB issue and now all of a sudden, you have filled 5 gaping holes. Still not sure what to do at the QB position - maybe the Central Michigan QB in round 4. What are you thoughts? Who should we target in free agency and how much money do we have to spend? I'm hoping we can bring in several people who can contribute similar to what the Mariners have done. Thanks and go Seahawks!

nightwulf said...

Here's some food for thought: (not advocating it, per se, but the math works within a couple of points)

Trade our #6 to NYG for #15,46 and 113
Trade our #14 to Cin for #21 and 54
Trade our "102 and 113 to Bal for #88 and 210

this gives us #'s 15, 21, 40, 46,54 and 88 in the first three rounds (2 firsts, 3 seconds and a third) That gives us room for (for instance) DT, DE, S, OTx2, RB...fill a lot of holes for now and the future...thoughts?

JohnnyB said...

Think about it for a second. Carroll comes into this league with big questions about whether he can coach in the NFL. If anyone thinks he is going to feel comfortable thinking long term, past this coming season, you've got a serious screw loose, especially after what Paul Allen did to Mora. The pressure is on Carroll to win this season, big time. Same exact issue with unproven Schneider.

Point two: So now the team is hopelessly full of holes and needs a huge influx of players? Why did Mora get fired then? If that was management thinking, you don't fire your coach! If the coach was fired, the thinking must be that a better coach would have done much better with those players. Maybe they're wrong, but that's what they're thinking, right?

So don't be expecting anyone connected with the Seahawks to be looking past the coming season. They have to prove they belong. In their minds, they have to win now.

Jon Smith said...

Strategy shmategy, you have to draft WELL. Unless they pick a TE or LB I won't argue what position the picks play as long as they're good players. If you're drafting pro bowlers, your team will benefit greatly.
I don't necessarily think Ruskells strategy was bad, he just drafted some weak-to-mediocre players. If LoJack was a Pro Bowler, Ruskell would still be here.
If your draft picks pay off, you don't have to burn salary on free agent band-aids.

Vince Mulcahy said...

Johnnyb - I hope that short term thinking is exactly what we stay away from. You can't win consistently if you are changing schemes every year with new coaches. You have to develop a routine and build your game plan based off your current rosters strengths and that wont happen if you are constantly in change. PC will need some time to build the 53 man roster to his liking, it's not going to be a one year wonder turn around for Seattle.

Also I think more of Mora's firing had to do with him being Ruskell's man then a direct result of his coaching ability. Paul Allen does want change, but I doubt he is ignorant to the point of having three head coaches, three different offensive and defensive schemes in three years.

JohnnyB said...

"Also I think more of Mora's firing had to do with him being Ruskell's man..."

So you think Allen and Leiweke figured Mora was a pretty good coach, but they had to get rid of him because they got rid of Ruskell? Mora's firing being explained as the result of an "extensive internal analysis" had nothing to with coaching problems?

I don't buy it. I think they found big problems with Mora. When you have a good coach in the NFL, you keep him, just like they did with Holmgren after Ruskell was hired. I think they are afraid of going back to the blackout years and if the team doesn't do more winning this coming season, jobs are on the line.

Some Seahawk fans are too comfortable slipping back into to loser mode (otherwise known as rebuilding). Just like now, before last season most fans predicted Ruskell and Mora would get a few years to lose (rebuild), but they were wrong. Don't make the same mistake twice.

Anonymous said...

NO, NO, NO!
Did it ever occur to you that Curry may have had a LB coach that didn't know what to do with him, and didn't try? In fact, maybe this attempt midway thru the season to change him to a new type of play/scheme was the so called rookie wall? Just a thot.

There are a lot of differences between you people and my thots. first, we need to attain a couple of UFAs to fill in a couple of gaps...maybe Bodden, Ryan Pickett, Seymour, and/or Sharper. All are UFAs. If we can get a couple of good UFAs, or more, I think, with the draft, and UDFAs, we can become a 8-8 team fairly easily.
Love the idea of trading down, but, if I had to pick at 6, it would be Berry or Hayden. Both are needs and excellent at the positions. 14 would be nice (if we had to pick there) for Price/Bulaga. And at 40 we could go for another playmaker like Williams (Kyle), Charlie Brown, Capers, etc. etc.
This is not an either/or question. I think that a couple of vets for a couple of years would make a good stop gap until we aquire the young guys to surplant them.
Here is my scenerio. Get Bodden, Ryan Pickett and maybe another good Vet (Peppers anyone?) and add thru the draft the possible starters we have not filled up. Remember, we need backups too. Then we draft Berry/Hayden (my choice would be to move down, to buffalo and take their pick and a 3rd rounder, where Hayden still may be) and at 14, Bulaga/Price (or move down a few and gain another pick).
To the guy that said we will have plenty of veteran experience, I thot you wanted young players, so I threw out Kearny and Grant and Branch as mentors. These guys are NOT young and have many injuries almost every year. The UFAs I have mentioned still play with few injuries. And they don't cost us a draft pick.
Love the way they have started by signing 2 Long snappers, and a punter or two, along with the top sacker in the CFL already. Shows they aren't waiting around. As soon as the teams cut their unwanted players, because of age or $$$, we should be looking at them (already). Our FO knows who is likely to be let go and who is not. It is NOT a matter of long or short term, it is a matter of keeping a team together to win some games NOW. I think the FO would be happy if, for the next 2 years, we would have an 8-8 record.
Yes, Mora was Ruskells man, but, he didn't coach well, or his coaches didn't. Pete, LOVES to win, and he will go thru many players to acheive his final victory or apex.
Sorry, for the sermon....AMEN

Vince Mulcahy said...

JohnnyB - I think that Leiweke never gave Mora the chance he deserved, and was much more of a scapegoat of Ruskell's internal problems that he created through out the organization.

And I don't think most fans gave Ruskell time to rebuild, he has been there for a long time. It was his job as GM to continue building, not all of a sudden enter "rebuilding" mode.

Most teams are going to see a decline after a HOF coach left, and the FO is under new management. Not to mention that the Seahawks have neglected so many positions thinking short term (FA) and have not drafted according to future team needs. But you won't see blackouts in Seattle. The fans have always been too nice to their teams and win or lose will watch. How many Hawks have been boo'ed at home? This isn't New York.

Anon - So much of what you just said is only applicable with a CBA (not in its final year). You won't see many players move around. Teams will restrict their best players with transition tags and franchise tags, the superstars will simply be stuck. And it won't matter what their current salary cap is because there won't be a ceiling next year so teams like the Saints can continue paying out a crazy amount of money to retain their vets for another year.

Jon said...

I think it was pretty cut and dry, Mora lost the team by the end of the season. Not because he was a bad guy, it's just that his mojo was not working on these players.
Obviously the roster he was dealing with was nothing to write home about but you can tell week to week if a team is improving, if they're putting a better product on the field than the previous week and it was clear that they weren't.

I agree that after Ruskell was out of the way it was easier to fire Mora, but either way this team was not going to win anything with Jim running the show. The plug needed to be pulled, sad but true.

Anonymous said...

Vince - yes, I know that all the teams get to franchise/transition a player - but, NE has Wilfork AND Bodden - they can't do them both. NO has 28 players, I believe, but, only about 9 that are true UFAs. So, do you think that NO has the money or they don't have any players they want to cut? Do you think that NE will pay for both of these hi $$$ players? Thing is, that some teams don't even want to franchise a player (like us)or even transition one (again, like us). There will be plenty of players there that can play after (is it feb 28th??). What is this, 5 days to make deals before FA? Teams are already cutting people.

Vince Mulcahy said...

Anon - Obviously any of this will be hard to predict as its not every year that we enter an uncapped year. But I do believe NE will retain Wilfork for sure, and if Bodden was released I would be really surprised. They can tag them both if they want. In an uncapped year a team gets two tags.
NE certainly can pay them both as their salary was only $97 mil last year.

The Saints are a unique story. And in my opinion they will keep (or try very hard to) all of their impact FAs. New Orleans just tasted their first victory in franchise history. Are the owners willing to take a $15 mil pay cut to keep most of those FA? I think so. They know they will make it up in all the other ways to get revenue.

JohnnyB said...

"But you won't see blackouts in Seattle."

Are you young? The Seahawks had blackouts by the boatloads prior to Paul Allen and Holmgren's arrival. Back then (the Behring years) the lack of competitiveness rivaled what we've seen the last few seasons. In a few years, the team dropped from having a six year waiting list for season tickets to blackouts.

I guarantee that in the last two seasons the season ticket waiting list has dropped considerably. Another season or two of losing and we'll see blackouts for sure, and the team knows it.

Anonymous said...

I know this is a draft blog, but can we discuss the free agent market as well? I want to hear who is out there and who you think the Seahawks should get and can get. I like the sound of Marshall, Peppers, and Bethea in Seahawks blue and then we can focus on DE, QB, and OT in the draft. Let me know your thoughts. Thanks and go Seahawks!

Brendan said...

A couple things - first off great site. Mora got fired because the ownership saw the writing on the wall. His strategy and style of play was never gonna get Seattle to a Super Bowl level and the hawks knew it early. Pretty impressive that they had the stones to make this decision this early on in Seattle and with a guy that is from Seattle and respected around Seattle. Unfortunately he just didn't have the abilities to get Seattle where we need to be - a passing, aggressive football team.

As far as the draft goes - I am surprised that trading the draft picks has not been addressed yet? Nightwulf had a great post above that I have been thinking about for the last couple of months. Trading the picks does more than a couple good things. One it brings in many players for many holes. Two, it alleviates alot of the pressure on the rookie's to perform at a high level. Instead the fans will blame the management or the coaches instead of the players. This will allow a bunch of under the radar players to build their skills while keeping expectations low = fantastic. By the way, the argument that says that Carrol needs to win now is bullsh%t. Mora got fired for the direction of the team - Carrol will have at least 3 years to show even a slight improvement - look at Holmgren. Also, look to other successful models in the NFL. Skill position players are important but they should be the last pieces of the puzzle. Minesota comes to mind. Build a team then get a QB in FA (FARVE, Brees, Warner) (this year would include McNabb).

So trade down - decrease fan expectations but build the culture of hard work in the locker room. Then when some pieces are in place in a couple years go out and get a big name FA or get a high draft pick.

Go hawks

please no QBs in the draft

JohnnyB said...

" ...Carrol will have at least 3 years to show even a slight improvement - look at Holmgren"

Holmgren had great success in the NFL prior to coming to the Seahawks. That's the only reason he got so much time. Carroll's previous NFL record is pretty dubious. Carroll's leash is going to be about the same as the former Seahawk coach with almost the exact previous NFL track record that he had...Jim Mora.

Brendan said...

I had someone say that same thing to me last weekend. The key difference is that I believe that Mora got fired due to simplistic, outdated strategy he employs. It also appeared that his players were performing well under their optimal output. While yes, we do not know whether or not Pete Carrol will get more out of the players than Mora did - I don't think it can be questioned that Carrol has more upside due to his superior strategy as it relates specifically to offense. I think that is the main reason for the coaching change. Passing wins playoff games and Carroll gives us far more upside than Mora.

Anonymous said...

JohnnyB - Mora's leach has nothing to do with Carroll. Mora dug his own grave - all Paul Allen did was throw him in it!

When Holmy was hired by Seattle the radio waves went crazy with fan ideas that the great Holmgren would have the Seahawks in the Super Bowl in 3 years or less. I thought 3 or 4 years. There were a few rational guys out their that thought 6 - 8 years was realistic. Even I though 6 years was too long, but apparently, I was wrong.

I believe Paul Allen understands what is in front of our beloved Seahawks...

JohnnyB said...

"I don't think it can be questioned that Carrol has more upside due to his superior strategy as it relates specifically to offense."

Well, Carroll's background is primarily with defense. I hope he has superior *something* on *both* sides of the ball. But it is inescapable that with all the different superior abilities demanded of an NFL head coach, they *all* have their weaknesses. You just hope they delegate enough to the right people in their weakest areas and dominate enough in their strongest areas.

With NFL coaching, the proof is in the pudding. From where we sit, that pudding is like an iceberg: almost all invisible. Nobody ever told us the submerged part of the Mora iceberg, so we can only guess. The only thing they mentioned was the losses. We can expect Carroll to have a similar standard

Brendan said...

Good point Johnny. I feel like the key to Carroll is to have a plan and show that the plan is being executed. I think that Carroll could even go to the owners and say look it our goal is to win a super bowl and at this point we are gonna need to develop younger players with a 5 year outlook to them. Therefor we will be bad for the next two years and in the third we will be slightly better. If Carroll said that with reason, logic and a plan behind it. Paul Allen would listen and give him rope to execute. In my opinion.

Anonymous said...

I think Mora was fired primarily because he lost the players respect, and the front office came to the realization that the team was headed in the wrong direction. That and getting GM candidates to interview with Mora in place was proving difficult, lending further credence to point A.

Kyle makes great points concerning rookie impacts on wins and losses. Doesn't happen often, and even when it does, the sophomore curse often kicks in.

The team needed a new culture and they've provided that with Carroll and Schneider. Allen will give them 2-3 years, provided they demonstrate they are making progress and have a plan that is bearing fruit. Picking talented players in the draft or through FA is only half the battle. The coaching, game plan, individual player dedication and execution and, yes, a little luck all have to coincide to result in a strong season.

I'm hopeful. I like the moves thus far. I'll like it even more if they pick the players I like, but even if McCoy, Okung and Spiller fell to us, it would not guarantee anything. I want draft picks who will not only make the 53 man roster, but provide more talent for the coaches to work with and I want the coaches to utilize them. For example, I liked the trade up for Butler last year, but hated the way the coaching staff used him. Time spent trying to turn him into a kick returner took away from development of WR skills. And don't get me started on the way they used Curry.

In summary, drafting Bulaga won't guarantee better protection for our QB in 2010. Locklear could still be the best option, until Bulaga develops. That's why left tackle prospects often start at RT or guard.

Housh was the FA I wanted last year (got my wish) and Kampman tops my wish list this year. I think Kerney is gone to retirement (I know he retracted that but it's due to a little $5MM signing bonus he'd have to pay back, so he wants to be cut to avoid writing a $5MM check) and we don't have any elite pash rusher to step in. Seymour would be my second choice, but even with him that would still create a lot of pressure to draft an elite pass rusher to at least split time with Tapp.

JohnnyB said...

Don't know if anyone will see this, but:

"I think Mora was fired primarily because he lost the players respect,"

Meaning he was an ineffective coach, meaning the front office largely blames the coach for all the losing, meaning they don't necessarily think the roster needs a big overhaul, as I said above.


"and the front office came to the realization that the team was headed in the wrong direction. That and getting GM candidates to interview with Mora in place was proving difficult, lending further credence to point A."

They ended up hiring the GM with a coach in place, first of all. And secondly, that shouldn't be an issue because all they had to say to the GM candidates was, "Yeah, we haven't fired Mora, but we're open to it if you get hired and you think it's the right thing to do."

So you don't have to fire Mora just to get a good GM.

Anonymous said...

"meaning they don't necessarily think the roster needs a big overhaul"

Now I see why Morgan banned you...