Front-office execs and scouts around the league – including the Seahawks – are huddling this week in preparation for the NFL Scouting Combine, which will be held Feb. 20-26 in Indianapolis. So the mock drafts already are circulating in cyberspace.
The boys at NFLDraftScout.com – Rob Rang and Dane Brugler – have weighed in with their initial mocks at CBSSports.com. Rang listened to coach Pete Carroll when he talked during his season-ender media session about improving the Seahawks’ pass rush, so he has the team selecting Texas defensive end Alex Okafor with the 25th pick in the first round. Brugler, aware that Alan Branch is scheduled to become an unrestricted free agent, gives the Seahawks Alabama defensive tackle Jesse Williams at that spot.
Don Banks at SI.com also has the Seahawks doing their first-round shopping in the Crimson Tide aisle, but on the other side of the ball with tackle D.J. Fluker: “The Seahawks could easily take the best available receiver in this slot (Baylor’s Terrance Williams, Clemson’s DeAndre Hopkins or USC’s Robert Woods), and fill a need. But Fluker might earn too high a grade to pass on. Seattle’s offensive line was superb in 2012, but Breno Giacomini is hardly irreplaceable at right tackle. Fluker is seen as a natural right tackle in the NFL and his massive 6-4, 355-pound size and impressive wingspan could solidify the position for the foreseeable future.”
At NFL.com, a trio of mock drafts veers back to the D-line for the Seahawks, with Bucky Brooks going for LSU end Sam Montgomery, Daniel Jeremiah tabbing Ohio State tackle Johnathan Hawkins and Charles Davis opting for BYU end Ezekiel Ansah.
Meanwhile, ESPN.com NFL senior writer John Clayton has put together a list of his early favorites to reach the Super Bowl in 2014, and the Seahawks are on his list.
Clayton ranks the Seahawks as his No. 4 favorite team to be in next year’s Super Bowl, behind the Denver Broncos (No. 1), New England Patriots (No. 2), and Green Bay Packers (No. 3). The Seahawks rank ahead of the Atlanta Falcons, who round out Clayton’s five favorites.
Specifically, Clayton points to quarterback Russell Wilson, a standout defense, and a schedule that should better distribute the Seahawks’ three divisional road games (the Seahawks played at each NFC West opponent in the season’s first seven weeks in 2012) as reasons to expect success.
By Clare Farnsworth and Tony Drovetto for Seahawks.com