SEATTLE — We start by putting our spotlight on the biggest takeaway from the Seahawks draft: Their overwhelming confidence in projected starting offensive guards, James Carpenter and J.R. Sweezy – and, in turn, the organization’s confidence in the overseer of that offensive line: Associate Head Coach Tom Cable.
As usual, we’re excited by the Seahawks picks, having addressed needs at wide receiver and the defensive line, along with very intriguing selections at linebacker and cornerback. And yes, the Seahawks selected two offensive linemen, including second-round pick Justin Britt. But both picks on the O-Line are projected tackles, which sent a huge statement about their current situation at left and right guard.
Nine Seahawks picks went by – without a pick at offensive guard. And there were some very capable guards on the draft board along the way.
It shows that Cable is perfectly fine with the personnel he has – and puts the onus on Carpenter and Sweezy to play to their full potential this season.
After all, in any Super Bowl year, there aren’t too many glaring weaknesses. But we all remember the Monday Night Football game in St. Louis when Russell Wilson was sacked seven times. And thanks to the draft, the Rams only got scarier on the D-Line with first-round pick Aaron Donald. We also remember the times last year when Wilson was running for his life, going against other impressive front sevens: Most notably, the other ones in the NFC West.
The offensive line is the Seahawks’ backbone – and we all know they’re solid at center and left tackle. They have emerging talents at both tackle spots as well.
And while it’s possible that free agent additions Stephen Schilling and Greg Van Roten will make a push at offensive guard, it’s apparent from the draft that Cable is confident in the starters he already has.
Remember, John Schneider might be the architect of the team – but it’s a safe assumption that Cable has final say over personnel on the offensive line.
The O-Line was such a glaring need when Cable got here in 2011 that the Hawks spent their first two draft picks to satisfy Cable’s desires. And if there was any concern from Cable at guard this year – I promise you, the Hawks would’ve pulled the trigger. Instead, they stayed put.
In the end, we’ve learned not to criticize the Seahawks draft picks under John Schneider and Pete Carroll. They’ve done a fantastic job.
But this year’s biggest post-draft question surrounds Carpenter and Sweezy.
It’s now up to them to prove Tom Cable right.