The 2017 NFL Draft is just 8 days away, and the mock drafts are flying thick and fast. Every Seattle Seahawks fan has their own opinions of which players the Seahawks should draft, and which players they think will turn out to be busts. Here’s my personal edition of “Do’s and Don’ts” for the Seahawks in the upcoming NFL Draft.
Don’t: Pick an offensive lineman in round one. Yes, I know, the Seahawks probably had the worst offensive line in the NFL last season. They probably upgraded the line with the signings of Luke Joeckel and Oday Aboushi, but many Seahawks fans want them to pick another lineman early in the draft. However, many NFL draft experts and scouts believe this is one of the worst draft classes for offensive linemen in quite some time. There are three linemen with a consensus first round grade: tackles Ryan Ramczyk and Garrett Bolles, and guard Forrest Lamp. Though it would be nice if the Seahawks were able to land one of those three at pick number 26, all three will likely have been drafted when it comes time for Seattle to pick. Thus, it is extremely important that the Seahawks avoid the temptation to pick any other lineman at 26. Which leads to….
Do: Draft more than one offensive lineman anyways. While the Seahawks may not get good value if they draft a lineman in round one, there are plenty of other viable candidates for them later in the draft. If they are looking for good picks in the second or third rounds, guard/tackle Taylor Moton and guard Isaac Asiata should both be available at pick 58 (their second round pick). Other possibilities include Nico Siragusa, a guard from San Diego State who should still be available in round three. If the Seahawks are looking to upgrade their offensive line, they need to take a shot on at least one, and probably two or three late round prospects in the hope that one of them turns out to be a viable starter.
Don’t: Trade up within the first three rounds. The Seahawks currently have seven draft picks. This is not bad, but John Schneider has also used at least nine draft picks each year as Seahawks general manager except one (the exception being 2015, where he used his first rounder in a trade for Jimmy Graham). As well, the Seahawks have no picks in the fourth or fifth rounds. Going two rounds without having a single pick is risky, for a couple of reasons. One, drafts can often go on “runs” of a position, where many prospects at one position will go off the board in a short amount of time. Should one of the runs hit a position where the Seahawks have a need in the fourth or fifth rounds, they risk not being able to fill that need through the draft. Second, it could force them to pick a player in the third round who is really a fourth or fifth round prospect. Thus, while the Seahawks have two third round picks and some fans want them to move up into the second round by trading those picks, this would create an even bigger gap between picks, and constain the Seahawks’ draft strategy further. With this in mind….
Do: Trade down into the fourth and fifth rounds. The ideal scenario for the Seahawks would be to use one or both of those picks to trade down in the draft and accumulate some picks in the fourth or fifth rounds. This would allow them to have a bigger draft class, and would put them in a stronger position going into the later rounds.
Do: draft at least one cornerback. Lastly, it is imperative that the Seahawks draft at least one cornerback. According to most draft experts, this is a historically good year for defensive backs, and as luck would have it Seattle is in need of another cornerback to start across from Richard Sherman. In the Pete Carroll/John Schneider era, the Seahawks have avoided drafting cornerbacks in the first three rounds, but in a draft like this one with an abundance of top level talent, they should definitely consider taking a cornerback with one of their first two picks.
Those are some of my draft “Do’s and Don’ts” for the Seahawks in 2017. Draft strategy evolves drastically during each day of the draft, and the Seahawks could surprise us like they have in the past, but history tells us that no matter what they do, we should believe in their thinking and ability to draft good players.
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