Seahawks Draft Grades

In light of Russel Wilson being traded to the Denver Broncos and Bobby Wagner being released, it seemed to be an absolute necessity for the Seahawks dynamic duo of John Schnieder and Pete Caroll to nail this draft. Only time will tell whether or not this will come into fruition, but at the moment it’s looking like the Seahawks front office were able to do just that. What sort of moves did they make that have given their fanbase a light at the end of the tunnel? Keep on reading the Seahawks Draft Grade to see!

9th Overall Selection(Rd.1-9) Charles Cross, OT, Mississippi State 

With veteran LT, Duane Brown, seemingly not returning to the team, the Seahawks decided to address the need by selecting Charles Cross. Out of the big three tackle prospects that were projected to go in the top 10 of the draft(Evan Neal, Ikem Ekwonu, and Charles Cross), Charles was looked at as the truest left tackle prospect. This is because Neal projects more as a RT and Ikem Ekwonu has some guard flexibility. Additionally, Charles Cross had the highest PFF pass-blocking grade and the second highest PFF run-blocking grade amongst all the offensive tackle prospects in this year’s draft. At only 21 years old, Cross has a lot of potential left to be untapped. Seattle made the right move by drafting someone who could potentially be a cornerstone for the franchise for years to come. 

Grade: A+ 

40th Overall Selection(Rd. 2-40) Boye Mafe, EDGE, Minnesota 

The Seahawks addressed another position of need, the Edge position. Seattle ranked 17th in rushing defense, a ranking they would like to improve, and I believe this is done so by selecting Boye Mafe. Selecting Mafe at pick 40 is good value, as he was projected to go in either the first or second round. This edge class was loaded, so there’s a good chance that in most draft classes, Mafe would’ve been a sure-fire round one prospect. He’s a bit raw coming out of college, but has some traits that could translate very well into the league.

Mafe’s combination of explosiveness and power makes him a dangerous pass rushing prospect. Run defense wise, he needs to work on setting the edge, but he does have a high motor and does a good job chasing and reacting to the ball carrier. Mafe’s athleticism translates well into his coverage ability. He will fit perfectly as a 3-4 OLB for the Seahawks new hybrid defensive scheme. Overall, the sky’s the limit for Mafe. If he can polish his run game as well as some other traits, he could be one of the most impactful players on the Seahawks defense. 

Grade: A 

41st Overall Selection(Rd. 2-41) Kenneth Walker III, RB, Michigan State 

A classic Pete Carroll pick. Everyone knows that Pete’s offensive philosophy is to run the life out of the defense. The running back room is looking questionable at the moment. Chris Carson has had a couple of injury-riddled seasons and is recently coming off of neck surgery. I believe this pick gives a clear indication that the organization is not very confident that Carson will be able to make a full recovery in a timely manner.

Rashaad Penny had a nice stretch at the end of the season, but he’s currently on a one year prove-it deal. Outside of the stretch at the end of the 2021 season, there’s not much indication that Penny can be a fulltime RB1. I believe that the philosophy behind this pick is that a one-two punch between Walker and Penny can be a dangerous tool for the offense this next year, and can take the pressure off of whoever the starting quarterback is in 2022.

Walker has consistently been ranked as one of the top two running backs in the draft. There’s very low bust potential here, but I believe that RB was a need that could have been addressed at a later round, like the third or fourth. I believe more pressing needs should have been addressed at 41, but this is far from a bad pick. The pick makes a lot of sense and I believe Kenneth Walker III will be a household name for Seahawks fans. 

Grade: B+ 

72nd Overall Selection(Rd. 3-72) Abraham Lucas, RT, Washington State 

Again, the Seahawks addressed a heavy need on the offensive side of the ball. Seattle allowed Russell Wilson to take the most sacks out of any quarterback in the league in the time-frame that he was their starter. They seemed to have learned their lesson by addressing the other tackle position with their third round selection. Lucas is a great run blocker, athlete, and has powerful hands. Being from Everett, Washington, Lucas gets to enjoy being in close proximity to his hometown. Lucas projects as a long-term starter for the Seahawks. Building up a young and talented offensive line will do a lot for the Seahawks eventual franchise starting quarterback. 

Grade A

109th Overall Selection(Rd. 4-109) Coby Bryant, CB, Cincinnati 

All jokes about his name aside, Seattle adds some promising depth at a big position of need with this pick. Cornerback play for the Seahawks has been questionable as of late, so there’s a lot of hope in this selection. Historically speaking, Seattle has always been a team that likes to take their cornerback prospects later in the draft rather than early. Think of Richard Sherman and Shaquill Griffin. Pete Carroll is looked upon as a cornerback guru who can get the most out of his corners. Bryant projects as a great zone corner with smooth feet and leverage work. He had only three missed tackles in 2021 and racked up three interceptions. Coby’s numbers at the combine caught eyes. He is a high IQ player with lots of experience. With a combination of good size and ball skills, Coby may be a steal here at pick 109. 

Grade: A 

153th Overall Selection(Rd. 5-153) Tariq Woolen, CB, UTSA 

A big corner being selected in the 5th round by the Seattle Seahawks. Who does that sound like? Richard Sherman, that’s who our lead scout compared him too. But there’s one key difference here. Woolen ran a 4.26 at the combine. Standing at 6’4 and weighing 205 pounds, Woolen has a rare combination of size and speed.

No DB in the NFL has measurables like this guy. On top of his size, Woolen is a heavy hitter. Woolen needs to work on some technical aspects of his game like his footwork and reading the ball when it’s in the air. These are some knocks that can be easily fixed by Pete Carroll and his defensive coaching staff. After that, the sky’s the limit. Getting a guy like this in the 5th round is highway robbery. 

Grade: A+ 

158th Overall Selection(Rd 5-158) Tyreke Smith, EDGE, Ohio State 

Seattle addressed the edge position once again in the fifth round. Seeing as how Seattle let a lot of veteran pass rushers on the team go like Benson Mayowa, Kerry Hyder Jr, and Carlos Dunlap, it makes sense for them to get some more depth at this position. Smith led the Big Ten in QB hits over the past two seasons with 21. Tyreke has elite agility and good bend. Two huge aspects when it comes to getting to the quarterback. However, he needs to work on his hand use. Although I would have liked to have seen the inside linebacker position be addressed here, I believe that doubling up on edge is a good move. 

Grade: B+ 

229th Overall Selection(Rd 7-229) Bo Melton, WR, Rutgers 

Outside of DK Metcalf and Tyler Lockett, there’s not much else on the depth chart at wide receiver. D’wayne Eskridge is entering his second year and still has a lot to prove and Freddie Swain has seemingly shown his maximum potential. I believe that going for some more depth at the position is the right move here and Bo Melton is an intriguing selection. Standing at 5’11 and 190 pounds, Melton ran a 4.34 40. Melton is a smooth route runner and broke TD and yardage records at Rutgers. His body control and ball tracking ability will translate well into the NFL. Additionally, he was one of the best returners in all of college football. I think the Seahawks got themselves a steal here in the 7th round. 

Grade: A+ 

233rd Overall Selection(Rd 7-233) Dareke Young, WR, Lenoir-Rhyne 

The Seahawks decided to double dip at receiver in the seventh round and I am all for it. With their earlier pick, Seattle went for an average sized speedster. With the following pick, they decided to get a bigger bodied receiver in Dareke Young. At 6 foot 2 and 224 pounds, Young will be a viable contested catch option. He has some rushing experience at Lenoir-Rhyne, something that could provide some good versatility on offense. Young shows great body control and a quick release. The Seahawks were looking for some receiver depth and they might have just found it in Dareke Young. 

Grade: A-

Seahawks Draft Grade Overall: A 

The elephant in the room following this draft is that there are still big question marks regarding the quarterback position. Before the draft, Seattle was projected to take a quarterback in the first or second round. After both rounds went by, Seattle kept passing on all of the quarterbacks available despite the big fall in quarterbacks in the draft. Seattle’s philosophy in this draft appears to be to address the other holes on the team. Doing so by setting up the best possible roster for whoever the next starting quarterback is. Offensive line, pass rush, corner, receiver, and running back were the Seahawks biggest needs and they were all addressed. Time will tell how these picks pan out, but at the moment it seems like they got the right guys to fill these holes. 

The quarterback position is still a need, as I don’t think Drew Lock will end up being the guy that takes Seattle to the promised land. However, one must keep in mind that this year’s quarterback class has been one of the weakest we’ve seen in years. There’s a reason that the guys at the top of the class fell to the third round. The Seahawks best bet seems to be to ride with Lock and if that doesn’t work out. Maybe they can have a shot at landing one of the top quarterbacks in next year’s highly regarded class.

Whether it’s Bryce Young, CJ Stroud, Spencer Rattler, or someone we don’t know very much of yet, the Seahawks have some flexibility at the position. This next year will tell us a lot more about what direction the team is going. In all, Seahawks fans should be hopeful now that a lot of the holes on the roster have been filled by young and promising players on rookie deals. The Seahawks seem to have made great use of the draft compensation they received from the Wilson trade.

Seahawks Draft Grade Analyst- Andrew Angelina.