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Grading the 2017 Seahawks Draft Class

Saturday, February 17, 2018

 

 

With the 2018 NFL Draft a little over 11 weeks away I’d like to take a look at the 2017 draft and take a look back to see how the team did. Obviously grading each player isn’t entirely fair, given their rookie status and how much depth this team has it’s hard to get on the field.

 

In total, Seattle selected 11 players in the drafts from round 2 through 7 and added 8 undrafted players.

 

Here’s the complete list –

 

Round 2 pick 35 – DT Malik McDowell

Round 2 pick 58 – C/G Ethan Pocic

Round 3 pick 90 – CB Shaquill Griffin

Round 3 pick 95 – S Delano Hill

Round 3 pick 102 – DT Nazair Jones

Round 3 pick 106 – WR Amara Darboh

Round 4 pick 111 – S Tedric Thompson

Round 6 pick 187 – S Mike Tyson

Round 6 pick 210 – OT Justin Senior

Round 7 pick 226 – WR David Moore

Round 7 pick 249 – RB Chris Carson

 

Here’s the 8 undrafted free agents the Seahawks signed in May 2017 –

 

FB – Algernon Brown

QB – Skyler Howard

DT – Jeremy Liggins

LB – Otha Peters

WR – Darreus Rogers

G – Jordon Roos

TE – Tyrone Swoopes

LB – Nick Usher

 

Of those 8 players, only two managed to remain on the active roster at the end of the season, TE Tyrone Swoopes and G Jordan Roos.  Tyrone Swoops got a total of 2 offensive snaps in 2017 and 0 special teams snaps and Jordan Roos managed 48 offensive snaps and 50 special teams’ snaps. I guess given their (lack of) draft status, you can’t expect much more out of these guys.

 

 

 

Now, let’s look at and grade each of the drafted players.

 

 

Round 2 pick 35 – DT Malik McDowell

 

I’m not going into much detail here as everyone knows what happened with McDowell.

 

 

Draft Grade – NA

Combined Snap Counts – 0

 

 

Round 2 pick 58 – C/G Ethan Pocic

 

Ethan Pocic saw time at Center and Guard this season. He was just ‘okay’ in my opinion. Given he was drafted in the second round, I don’t think it’s unfair to expect more out of him from an outright production standpoint, however he did get plenty of opportunity on both the offense and special teams. He was on the field for 636 snaps on offense (59.79%) and 87 special teams’ snaps (18.24%).

 

Draft Grade – D+

Combined Snap Counts – 723

 

 

Round 3 pick 90 – CB Shaquill Griffin

 

Shaq was somewhat thrown into the deep end very early on in his career as a Seahawk. Jeremy Lane managed to get himself ejected early on in week 1 against Green Bay meaning Griffin had to step in and take over at RCB. It’s fair to say he started off pretty slowly, making some errors with his fundamentals however, as the season progressed he very quickly climbed up the depth chart to starter level and continued on this curve all the way through the remaining season. Towards the end, he looked superb. He looked natural, confident and was playing well. I love this pick and am highly confident Griffin will be our starter at corner for years to come. He played 875 defensive snaps (79.69%) and 49 special teams snaps (10.27%).

 

Draft Grade – A-

Combined snap counts – 924

 

 

Round 3 pick 95 – S Delano Hill

 

Delano Hill never made the field on the defensive side however did contribute on special teams, recording 280 snaps (58.7%). He was projected to go in the 5th to 6th round prior to the draft so you could argue the team reached somewhat for him. Given he plays SS he was never going to overtake Kam Chancellor on the depth chart, though. This may well be a pick where they wanted Hill to sit behind Kam with plans of contributing more in later years. He likes to play close to the line of scrimmage and is a good tackler so It’s not a bad pick in the literal sense, just not great value with a 3rd round pick.

 

Draft Grade – C-

Combined Snaps – 280

 

 

Round 3 pick 102 – DT Nazair Jones

 

Naz Jones had a fantastic rookie campaign prior to his season ending injury in early December. He played 284 defensive snaps (25.87%) and proved to be a second-tier contributor on the defensive line rotation. If he had lasted all season, his defensive snaps would have surely been higher and grown as the season progressed. He recorded 2 sacks an interception (!!) and 19 combined tackles on the year. He will very likely have a much bigger role in his second year.

 

Draft Grade – A+

Combined Snaps – 328

 

 

 

 

Round 3 pick 106 – WR Amara Darboh

 

Amara didn’t exactly set the field alight in 2017 but did get opportunities on the offensive side seeing 191 snaps (17.9%) as well as 159 special teams’ snaps (33.3%). He racked up 71 yards off 8 receptions in 2017, given Wilson’s fear of turnovers, it’s no surprise he didn’t particularly trust Darboh in his first season, as that chemistry grows though, he has the size (6 foot 2) and tangibles to be a genuine weapon on this offense. He could easily see his role move into Paul Richardson’s in 2018, which is promising. I expect he will have a pretty good impact next season which is why I’ve graded him higher than some may expect. I’d say a genuine comparison of Amara Darboh would be Mohamed Sanu.

 

Draft Grade – B

Combined Snaps – 350

 

 

Round 4 pick 111 – S Tedric Thompson

 

Tedric Thompson is effectively Delano Hill lite in terms of his contributions to the team in 2017. He didn’t get on the field at all defensively, however did get a total of 104 special teams snaps (21.8%). It’s hard to gauge how Tedric would have performed in 2017 however given that when Earl Thomas missed games they put Bradley McDougald in his place instrad of Thompson. He was projected to go in the 3rd or 4th round, so the team didn’t reach for him.

 

Draft Grade – D

Combined Snaps – 104

 

 

Round 6 pick 187 – S Mike Tyson

 

Mike Tyson didn’t make too much of an impact in 2017, he was cut by the team however, shortly afterwards was signed to the practice squad. As of today, he does sit on the actice roster. He didn’t step on the field once last season so again, it’s fair to assume his career with the team will be unproductive. “You can’t hit on them all”, as they say.

 

Draft Grade – D

Combined Snaps - 0

 

 

Round 6 pick 210 – OT Justin Senior

 

Senior also didn’t get on the field in 2017. He was waived/injured in the preseason and placed in IR and was later released by the team and given an injury settlement in December.

 

Draft Grade – F

Combined Snaps – 0

 

 

Round 7 pick 226 – WR David Moore

 

Moore did see the field in 2017, however was very limited to 9 snaps on offense (0.84%) and 1 snap on special teams (0.21%). He was actually waived by the team just before week 1 and signed to the practice squad, however another team showed interest in signing him to their active roster so he was moved onto the 53 so the team obviously likes what they see from a project point of view. Given he was drafted in the 7th round, I can’t complain.

 

Draft Grade – D

Combined Snaps – 10

 

 

Round 7 pick 249 – RB Chris Carson

 

How’s that for draft value? Seattle really hit on this pick. He is dangerously close to being ‘Mr Irrelevant’ (a draft catch phrase that I despise, personally). Carson jumped up the depth chart very early on and was the starter for 3 of the 4 games he played in before suffering his season ending injury in early October. He ran for 93 yards in week 2 against the 49ers averaging 4.6 yards per carry. Behind this line, 4.6... He also averaged the season with 4.2 (the highest amongst all RB’s), J.D. McKissic came close with 4.1, though. Carson is almost guaranteed to be a pivotal player in the run game next season and it will be great for him to be injury free so we can see what he can do for an entire season. It’s safe to say he could well have surpassed 1000 yards if he had played in all 16 games. I have graded him so high given his draft position vs production.

 

Draft Grade – A+

Combined Snaps – 157

 

 

If Malik McDowell would have worked out I’d have been extremely satisfied with last year’s class. The team bolstered their depth and added starters that will likely remain on the team for several years to come, although they didn’t get any rookies into the Pro Bowl (only 4 players did league wide) It would be very unjust to call the 2017 draft class unsuccessful.

 

The only thing that concerns me slightly about Seattle’s draft choices the last several years is the last drafted player that made the Pro Bowl was Tyler Lockett who was drafted in 2015 draft. However, I wouldn’t be surprised to see the likes of Frank Clark and Naz Jones get there next year.

 

As always, Go Hawks!

 

 

 

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