Crushed Optimists

We are twin brothers who grew up in Central Washington. This blog is devoted to the life of Seattle sports fans, as well as various other topics that we will espouse for your enjoyment. We could be called another OFFICIAL SEATTLE SEAHAWKS site, but we'll take our uneducated crack at the Mariners, Sonics, and Huskies as well. A Seattle Sports Blog? Must be the land... of crushed optimism!

Monday, May 01, 2006

NFL Draft: Talking Heads Reactions

Analysis Round-up! Good times!

Mel Kiper Jr. (subscription required for link): B
They had only six picks, but I like what the Seahawks did with each of them. You can't argue with CB Kelly Jennings in the first round and DE Darryl Tapp with the 63rd pick. Seattle did a good job of addressing needs early and followed that up with Ohio State OG Rob Sims and USC fullback David Kirtman.

Scouts Inc. (subscription required for link):
Kelly Jennings: Once the Seahawks made Andre Dyson a salary cap casualty, they knew they needed a corner who can start opposite Marcus Trufant. With that in mind, this is a great pick for the Seahawks. While Virginia Tech's Jimmy Williams has more natural ability and still was on the board, Jennings doesn't have the same kind of character issues and has great potential. He has good closing speed and rarely gets caught out of position, so he is capable of pushing for immediate playing time.

Darryl Tapp: Tapp was a steal this late in the second round. He slipped because of his below-average NFL measurables, but Tapp is a natural playmaker who should continue to produce in the NFL. During his final two seasons at Virginia Tech, Tapp notched 30 tackles for loss, including 18 sacks. He also proved his worth at the Senior Bowl when he notched a sack with a double-move that kept Virginia OT D'Brickashaw Ferguson (Jets' first-round pick, fourth overall) off balance. Tapp will provide Seattle immediate depth as the No. 3 defensive end behind Grant Wistrom and Bryce Fisher. He also could emerge as the long-term replacement for an aging Wistrom.

Petey Prisco:
Best pick: The Seahawks needed a corner, so they took Kelly Jennings in the first round. Jennings is quality cover player who will push for a starting job.

Worst pick: Some scouts thought second-round pick Darryl Tapp was a tad overrated. But it was the back end of the second round.

Overall grade: C. It wasn't too exciting, but they think they filled some needs.

Clark Judge believes that we just edged out the NY Giants for Kelly Jennings.

John Czarnecki: (draft judged 18th best)
It's difficult to draft next-to-last in every round, but GM Tim Ruskell seemed to grab good value with Virginia Tech defensive end Darryl Tapp and U. of Miami cornerback Kelly Jennings, who is fundamentally solid. USC fullback David Kirtman should star on special teams while Ohio State guard Rob Sims will get a chance to replace Steve Hutchinson. Well, realistically, Sims could be a functional backup. Grade: C

Pro Football Weekly:
Kelly Jennings: A very safe pick, Jennings walks in from Day One and starts in nickel situations and could take over the No. 2 job from Kelly Herndon before the end of his rookie year. Jennings has very good feet and among the best ball skills of any corner in this draft.

Darryl Tapp: Is relentless in his pursuit. All that pushed him down draft boards was his lack of size and speed.

Adam Schien (likes (doesn't love) our draft:
Kelly Jennings started 41 games at Miami and instantly impacts the Seattle defense as a nickel back instantly. And it wouldn't shock me if he started at some point soon. And with Bryce Fisher and Grant Wistrom not getting any younger, Darryl Tapp from Virginia Tech was a very cerebral selection at the end of round 2.

Dan Arkush (not really a draft article, but oh well) feels like Seattle is in line to break the Super Bowl loser curse of the last couple of years.

Ron Borges (gives Seattle a B-):
They needed secondary help and some in speedy Miami safety Kelly Jennings. Many teams felt he's a second round value but the Seahawks needed a corner and he was the best one left so they took him. Who could blame them?

Then excellent value with Virginia Tech defensive end Darryl Tapp at the end of round 2. When you're picking next to last in each round you can't be too choosy. B- is pretty good all things considered.

Detect-O-Vision (thanks for the shoutout, by the way, has, in our opinion, the best line of the draft):
Again, Ruskell goes for production over "gym stats" like size, max bench, etc. Again, he emphasizes character over sheer athleticism at the combine.

This is the equivalent of drafting Barry Zito over Gil Meche. It is the equivalent of drafting college pitchers with great K/BB results and excellent "mound presence" …. over throwers who clock 96 mph and jump 38" vertical and bench 225 for fifteen reps…

Ruskell goes for performance records over tools. He wants pitchers over throwers, football players who get their hats on the ball over gym heroes who bench Harley-Davidsons.

He's the football analogue of a saberdweeb. Why look at the predictors for performance — when you can look at the actual performance? Ruskell goes Billy Beane on the NFL, and in the NFL, there's room to poach there. Athleticism is over-valued.

Mike Sando:
Just keep scrolling, he has PLENTY of awesome stuff there.

12 Seahawks Street:
Great analysis of all Seahawks picks.

And, who better to finish it off than Art Thiel:
Along with veteran returnees Marcus Trufant, Kelly Herndon, Jordan Babineaux and Michael Boulware, as well as the presumed comeback of a healthy Hamlin and the addition of safety Mike Green, acquired last week, Jennings makes the rotation of athletes in the secondary the best in club history.

I'll keep adding as more analysis comes up on the web, but it is fair to say that no one thought we had an awful draft, and the only reason why we might not have ranked as highly by some is that there were no true standout players drafted by the Hawks (like a Leinart, or a Bunkley). Our analysis will be coming soon as well, so stay tuned for that.....

posted by colin_hesse @ 1:02 PM  0 comments


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