Posted on: January 11, 2010 8:51 pm
Edited on: January 11, 2010 8:59 pm
Due not only to the phenomenal success he's enjoyed with the USC Trojans, as well as the experience he gained in prior stints as the head coach in New England and New York, one could make the argument that Pete Carroll is as well qualified as any coach the Seattle Seahawks might hope to hire this off-season.
After all, he offers (along with two national championship rings) unique motivational skills, a sharp football mind, experience in high pressure games and established connections to some of the best coaches at all levels of the game. Carroll is nice. He's fun. He's the kind of guy you'd like to hang out with for a few hours and maybe play 18.
Most teams would be lucky to have him.
However, much the same could be said about the recently fired Jim Mora, Jr.
If Mora Jr. deserved to be fired (a very debatable topic in its own right), the Seahawks would have been wise to consider replacing him with a different style of coach, one with a stricter, more disciplinarian style of going about his business.
Marty Schottenheimer, John Fox, or Arizona offensive line coach Russ Grimm might not have been the sexy pick that would result in fans renewing their seats immediately, but they'd bring back an element of toughness that this team is missing. (If a multi-million dollar, big splash hire was required, Bill Cowher would have been a fine choice, as well.)
But I digress...
I believe Pete Carroll can be successful as an NFL coach. Coaching is coaching. I don't buy that his techniques -- whether in motivation, personnel or scheme -- will cease to work just because his NFL players are older and richer.
After watching Seattle unceremoniously dump a very similar man after only one season on the job, I do question, however, if Carroll (and those hiring him) truly recognize what is missing with this franchise.
(The commentary above was first posted as part of a discussion in "The League" a conversational blog community as part of the Washington Post .)
Posted on: August 16, 2009 6:36 pm
Seattle Seahawk defensive end Nick Reed is a classic example of a highly productive collegiate prospect falling on draft day because of a lack of ideal size and speed. Few, if any, defensive ends across the country can match Reed's career numbers. The owner of the University of Oregon's career sacks (29.5) and tackles for loss (51.5) -- which each rank fourth in Pac-10 history -- Reed earned first-team all-conference honors as a junior and senior. The epitome of consistency, Reed recorded at least one sack in 23 of his 26 career starts. The Ducks listed Reed at 6-3, 245 pounds, but scouts knew better and despite his eye-popping production, wasn't even invited to the Combine. Measuring in at a shade over 6-0, and 247 pounds, Reed fell all the way to 247th pick overall, where Seattle, the team closest in proximity to seeing him on a regular basis, decided to take a chance. Reed, playing exclusively at right defensive end (though he dropped into zone blitz coverage, on occasion) registered 1 sack, 1 tackle for loss, and an interception. His primary competition was San Diego reserve left tackle L.J. Shelton, an 11 year veteran with 127 career starts.
Nick Reed, Seattle Seahawks, DE, #98: Good initial quickness off the snap to push the tackle's shoulder. Fast enough off the edge to turn the tackle and scoot past him with either a good second burst, or quick re-direct back inside. Active, accurate hands to slap away the tackle's attempts to grab hold of him. Lacks the strength to break free if captured, though he doesn't stop working to gain his release. Rare effort in pursuit laterally and downfield. Used a speed rush outside against Shelton to record his sack. Most impressive play may have been his interception. Initially attempted a speed rush, but when countered effectively by Shelton, Reed focused his attention on Charger reserve quarterback Charlie Whitehurst and read screen pass. Reed released from Shelton, slipped laterally toward the running back and was in perfect position to snatch Whitehurst's toss. Though instinctive and quick enough laterally to maintain his containment responsibilities in the running game, Reed's current size and strength is just too much of a liability to see consistent playing time in the base scheme. As a weapon during obvious passing downs, however, Reed proved that his consistent ability to make plays behind the line scrimmage did not end in college.
Posted on: April 26, 2009 10:17 am
Good morning to everyone...
Well, Day one is in the books and Day two begins in just a few moments. Expect the picks to come pretty fast and furious to start things off as the teams have had all evening to sift through the notes, digest what happened yesterday and react today.
Some of the initial surprises I had yesterday was the run on wide receivers, dropping of offensive tackles, the Oakland Reachers, and the Denver Blowups.
Certainly no one can fault the Giants and Titans for finishing the first round with receivers Hakeem Nicks and Kenny Britt, given their needs -- and many had forecasted the clubs would pick precisely who they picked -- but it was still a bit of a surprise to some veteran scouts to see those two clubs take wideouts in the first round. The Giants and Titans had historically stayed away from the position in the first round.
With receivers and pass rushers taking up so many picks, a few of the top rated offensive tackles slipped down the board. I saw the writing on the wall a bit with Eben Britton and William Beatty in a few late conversations with clubs heading into the draft, which is why I dropped each from my final mock, but I was surprised to see Phil Loadholt slip out. It did not surprise me at all, however, to see the Vikings end up with Loadholt. According to my sources, he was in strong consideration with their first pick, but the team couldn't pass up the opportunity for a playmaker like Percy Harvin.
I'm annually stunned by the some of the selections that come from the Oakland Raiders... I was among those who projected Heyward-Bey to the Raiders at #7. My fellow senior analyst Chad Reuter was the first to make this projection, I believe, and correctly forecast it among our 5 Bold Predictions, as well. However, the selection of the safety Mitchell in the second round sent shockwaves throughout the league. Interesting player with a lot of upside and certainly was moving up the board, but the two teams I polled immediately after the pick had him pegged in the 6th and 7th rounds, respectively.
And those Broncos... Wow. Don't get me wrong, I love the Moreno pick. Love it. But after that, things started to slip and then snowball terribly. Ayers at #18 didn't surprise me, but I'm lower on him than many are. I was stunned by the decision to trade next year's first round pick to the Seahawks for #37 overall. Only a few picks later, the Seahawks traded back into the 2nd round with Denver with their 3rd and 4th rounders. Not only did the total points from the 3rd and 4th round picks not equate to the value of Denver's second (so Seattle won this trade, according to the chart), by flipping 2nd rounders, the Seahawks essentially gave up a 3rd and 4th round pick for the Broncos 1st next year. Considering the Broncos finished last season 8-8 with Jay Cutler, this could turn out to be a historically bad trade for the Broncos.
It certainly puts a lot of pressure on the Broncos to draft well with the 3rd and 4th round picks acquired for this draft.
Have fun today...
Posted on: April 24, 2009 7:20 pm
It is generally assumed that the St. Louis Rams are going to take one of the top tackles with the second overall pick. The consensus is that the pick will be either Baylor's Jason Smith or Virginia's Eugene Monroe.
The tackle not selected by the Rams could take a serious tumble down the board, according to the latest rumors circulating throughout the league.
The Chiefs will consider one of the tackles, especially Monroe, I'm told. However, most believe the Chiefs have locked in on either Wake Forest linebacker or LSU defensive end Tyson Jackson with third pick and will allow either tackle to continue to slide past.
Seattle also has concerns along the offensive line and are thought to be higher on Jason Smith. Still, they seem to be focused more, at this point, on USC quarterback Mark Sanchez, Texas Tech wide receiver Michael Crabtree and Curry, should he remain available.
Cleveland, is obviously set at left tackle with young Pro Bowler Joe Thomas, but may consider one of the tackles for the right side. The fifth overall pick on a right tackle seems is pretty steep, however, especially when insiders suggest the Browns are locking in on either Sanchez or Boston College defensive tackle BJ Raji.
Cincinnati would seem like the logical landing point for the tackles, but I'm told offensive line coach Paul Alexander loves Andre Smith and wants to take him over any other tackle in this draft. Few teams take their position coaches' opinions into account more than the Bengals, and it isn't difficult to understand why, considering the success the Bengals have had in developing several quality (non-first round) offensive linemen over the years, including Eric Steinbach, Stacy Andrews and Andre Whitworth, among others...
The Raiders certainly need help along the offensive line, but I'm told Al Davis is going to devote much of the draft towards acquiring weapons for JaMarcus Russell... I'd argue that protecting his blindside would be a good way to towards helping Russell out, but the Raiders think differently than most teams on draft day and seem to be leaning towards a receiver...
The Jaguars could be the first realistic option for the falling tackle -- and even they are certainly no lock considering the fact that they signed Tra Thomas in free agency... Watch out for a small trade up from Green Bay (#9) or San Francisco (#10) who would each welcome the falling tackle on their team.
Considering the tackle passed by St. Louis at #2 could be available this late, some lucky team may be poised to be one of the few top ten drafting teams to actually get a bargain on draft day.
Posted on: April 22, 2009 11:27 am
Edited on: April 22, 2009 12:41 pm
My colleague Clark Judge penned an intriguing article, whose link is provided below, which theorizes that the Seahawks essentially will control the top half of the draft based on who they select with the fourth overall pick.
He believes the three options the Seahawks will consider are OT Eugene Monroe (or Jason Smith, if Monroe is the tackle the Rams take at #2), WR Michael Crabtree and QB Mark Sanchez.
I've agree, but feel he's wrong on the three candidates Seattle is considering.
I believe Aaron Curry will be available and very much in consideration for the Seahawks, along with Sanchez and Crabtree. I believe that OT is less of a need for the Seahawks than has been reported.
If Tim Ruskell sticks with his own history of selecting high character, four year starters from BCS conferences, Curry is the pick. Certainly Curry is a need, considering the trade of Julian Peterson. Curry's strengths make him a perfect fit for the OLB position in the 4-3 scheme. If Curry is not selected by Seattle, he could slip surprisingly far down the board due to the number of 3-4 teams in the top ten. Curry is viewed by many as a poor fit at the rush linebacker position in the 3-4 defense.
There is also the possibility that Ruskell looks to the future and drafts Sanchez. Matt Hasselbeck, soon to be 34 and having made all 16 regular season starts only three times in his seven years in Seattle, remains a great player and the face of the franchise, but Sanchez is viewed by many throughout the league as a franchise caliber quarterback. He is likely to be graded higher than any quarterback Seattle will be in position to select next year. Most feel the Seahawks were extraordinarily ravaged by injuries last season. Their return to health could result in a more competitive season, which could put the Seahawks squarely in the middle or later portions of the first round next year.
The player making a late run back up the board with the Seahawks appears to be Crabtree. Disregard that the Seahawks signed TJ Houshmandzadeh via free agency. At 32 years old, he is not being viewed as a longterm solution to Seattle's needs. The dynamic Crabtree, who many scouts believe will be the best player from this draft three years from now, is absolutely in play.
I'm among the few, apparently, who does not believe Tim Ruskell is strongly considering an offensive tackle with the fourth pick. Certainly the team needs to have a plan in place for life without future Hall of Famer Walter Jones. However, the team feels they already have that tackle in current starting right tackle Sean Locklear. By re-signing Ray Willis, who the Seahawks feel is a starting caliber right tackle, the Seahawks feel they're much stronger at tackle than most perceive.
Here is Clark's article. It is a terrific read, even if ultimately I disagree on a third of the players he mentions for Seattle's pick.
Posted on: April 6, 2009 6:27 pm
The Seattle Seahawks own the 4th pick of the draft and are thought to be considering using the pick on the eventual successor to Matt Hasselbeck. Some have theorized that if the Detroit Lions were to select someone other than Georgia's Matt Stafford with the top pick that the Seahawks would end his "fall." Others believe the Seahawks may take USC's Mark Sanchez at #4 regardless of what the Lions do.
Through savvy decisions in free agency and trade, Seattle general manager Tim Ruskell has put the team in position to take the best available player with the fourth pick of the draft. The team entered the off-season with clear needs at receiver, offensive tackle, and defensive tackle but filled those with the signing of TJ Houshmandzadeh, re-signing of Ray Willis and trade for Cory Redding. They could look to fill their greatest remaining need at outside linebacker with Aaron Curry, if he was available, or look to the future with OTs Jason Smith or Eugene Monroe, receiver Michael Crabtree, or one of the quarterbacks.
Ruskell will be able to make a much more informed decision after this week's mini-camp.
The 33-year old Hasselbeck is expected to participate in the mini-camp, after missing 9 games last season with a bulging disk in his back.
Though there won't be anything even remotely resembling the physicality of a regular season game in this week's mini-camp, how Hasselbeck performs could be a critical component in the Seahawks' decision on draft day.
Sanchez is one of the real wildcards of the 2009 draft, with his projected team ranging from Seattle at #4, Jacksonville at #8 or San Francisco (#10) all the way into the deep teens with the Jets (#17) and Bucs (#19).
Posted on: March 25, 2009 11:32 pm
Many outside of the Pac-10 conference have heard of Oregon State cornerbacks Keenan Lewis and Brandon Hughes or offensive lineman Andy Levitre, an underrated component of the Beavers' winning the Pac-10 crown was the play of safety Al Afalava.
Afalava, a four year starter, was not invited to the Combine despite his steady play, but recently worked out for scouts, putting forth a workout that would have ranked as the best all-around from any safety invited to Indianapolis. The workout was good enough, in fact, that the Colts, Bears and Seahawks have all already scheduled private workouts with Afalava.
Afalava measured in at 5-11, 207 pounds and was clocked in the mid 4.4s (4.42-4.48) in the 40-yard dash. He also posted a 40" vertical jump, a 10'5" broad, a 4.06 short shuttle, 6.50 3-cone, and put up a staggering 29 repetitions of 225 pounds.
Another former Beaver making his way back up the charts is guard Jeremy Perry. Perry, voted Co-Freshman of the Year back in 2005 (along with Arizona wideout Mike Thomas) has worked his way back from multiple leg injuries that caused him to miss the entire 2008 season and had led to speculation that his football career was over. Instead, Perry will be working out for scouts at the Hawaii Pro Day April 2nd, brandishing x-rays, DVDs and written medical clearance from doctors that he is ready to again play.
The 6-2, 337 pounder was a dominant force for the Beavers throughout his career and if he can prove his health, could earn a late round selection next month.