How Frank Clark trade affects 2019 NFL Draft: Options for the Seahawks in Round 1, Chiefs in Round 2
After the Frank Clark trade, who will the Chiefs and Seahawks turn their attention to on draft weekend?
Here are the details of the trade:
- Chiefs get: DE Frank Clark, Seahawks' 2019 third-round pick
- Seahawks get: Chiefs' 2019 first-round pick, Chiefs' 2019 third-round pick, Chiefs' 2020 second-round pick
While Clark had emerged as the best pass rusher in Seattle's post Legion of Boom era, the soon-to-be-26-year-old hadn't come to a long-term agreement with Seahawks management and had been designated the team's franchise player.
As a win-now, playoff-caliber club, draft picks may seem a little more insignificant for Seattle than other teams. But the reality is every team, every year needs to infuse cheap youth into its roster. And before this trade, Pete Carroll's team had just four picks in the 2019 draft, with one selection in the first round, third round, fourth round, and fifth round.
This is now what the Seahawks look like in terms of draft capital on Day 1 and Day 2 this year:
- Round 1: No. 21 overall
- Round 1: No. 29 overall (acquired in Clark trade)
- Round 3: No. 92 overall
And the Chiefs:
- Round 2: No. 61 overall
- Round 2: No. 63 overall
- Round 3: No. 84 overall
Let's assess some options for both clubs with their opening picks in this draft.
Seahawks' Round 1 options
Suddenly armed with two first-round picks, Seattle is in an awesome situation. Of course, a replacement for Clark would be logical, and prospects like Clemson's Clelin Ferrell, Mississippi State's Montez Sweat, and Florida State's Brian Burns are reasonable options at No. 21 overall. No, all of them probably won't be available, but any would represent solid value at a clear position of need.
If they decide to wait until No. 29 to address the edge-rusher spot, Michigan's draft riser Chase Winovich would firmly be in play, and his athletic profile looks similar to many of the prospects Seattle has acquired at the outside pass-rusher spot during the Carroll/John Schneider era.
Receiver has always been on the radar for the Seahawks, and now they have the luxury of being patient with that spot if they so desire. If D.K. Metcalf somehow fell to No. 21, they'd have to consider him given Russell Wilson's downfield-passing specialty. Stanford's J.J. Arcega-Whiteside, Arizona State's N'Keal Harry, or Iowa State's Hakeem Butler could be in play at No. 29.
Other possible positions and prospects on the table now in Round 1:
- Virginia safety Juan Thornhill, Maryland safety Darnell Savage (both very athletic options to help to replace Earl Thomas)
- Oklahoma guard/tackle Cody Ford (run-blocking prowess)
- Vanderbilt cornerback Joejuan Williams, Kentucky cornerback Lonnie Johnson (tall, long, athletic defensive backs)
Chiefs' Round 2 options
Of course, the Chiefs are now viewing their 2019 first-round pick as Clark, and they paid a hefty price to acquire him, especially relative to sole 2020 second-rounder they got from the 49ers in the Dee Ford trade. Important note on the player-to-player comparison for what it's worth: Clark is two years younger than Ford and likely a better scheme fit in Kansas City.
And his presence eliminates the chances Kansas City goes edge rusher with either of their second-round selections in this draft.
The interior of the offensive line -- after losing Mitch Morse in free agency -- would be logical, given the small sample size from his replacement Austin Reiter and the inconsistent play from penciled in starter at left guard Cam Erving.
Kansas State's Dalton Risner, who played right tackle in college but could thrive anywhere up front, would be a tremendous get in Round 2. So would Boston College's Chris Lindstrom. Penn State's Connor McGovern is flying up draft boards, checks the athleticism boxes for most teams, and has experience -- and solid play -- at multiple positions on the line. That trio should be in play at No. 61 and/or No. 63. I'll throw in two other names: Oklahoma's super-experienced guard Dru Samia and Charlotte's compact blocker Nate Davis.
If the Chiefs want to add to their secondary -- even after signing Tyrann Mathieu -- Notre Dame's disruptive cornerback Julian Love could be available late in Round 2. Staying at corner, Central Michigan's Sean Bunting shot up draft boards after a big combine. He'd make sense. Florida's Chauncey Gardner-Johnson would give the Chiefs two slot matchup safeties, and CGJ has impressive range from center field. If Alabama's springy safety Deionte Thompson were to be available when the Chiefs go on the clock in the second round, he'd be a smart pick too.
Lastly, Kansas City could look to address the long-term viability of the receiver group, especially given the uncertain future of superstar Tyreek Hill. And two Ohio State pass catchers would be awesome fits for Andy Reid's YAC-predicated offenses as well as Patrick Mahomes' aggressiveness downfield: speedsters Terry McLaurin and Parris Campbell. Notre Dame's freaky, big-bodied wideout Miles Boykin should be on the radar too.
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