Saturday, February 5, 2011

NFL Network: Seattle in first-round QB hunt

NFL Network's Albert Breer comments on Seattle's quarterback intentions: (emphasis mine)

   With Charlie Whitehurst difficult to count on as a "quarterback of the future," and Matt Hasselbeck's contract up, Seattle has planned for months to seriously consider pulling the trigger on a new signal-caller in the first round. ... There are likely three quarterbacks going in the top half of the first round: Missouri's Blaine Gabbert, Auburn's Cam Newton and Washington's Jake Locker. Now, to get any of those three would require a serious move up and a heavy cost to Seattle, and that means there would have to be serious conviction on the part of the staff. Maybe Carroll has that with the hometown kid Locker...But otherwise, all this might mean the team would be left with the option of Ryan Mallett at the bottom of the first round, and the Seahawks already are well aware of the kind of risk he presents from a character perspective.

   One way for the Seahawks to address their quarterbacking question could be to make another run at Kevin Kolb. ... Remember, the Browns and Seahawks made inquiries last offseason about Kolb but were rebuffed as it became clear the Eagles preference was to deal Donovan McNabb. Cleveland, of course, has insight because of GM Tom Heckert's Philadelphia roots, while Seattle was another West Coast offense team that figured Kolb's transition could be a smooth one.

My take: This strikes me as nothing more than makes-sense speculation. A few disagreements I have:

  • Kevin Kolb is indeed a hot commodity - in the sense that a hot stove top can scorch your hand. He's an untested QB and his very limited action in 2010 hasn't changed that. Something else that hasn't changed is his price tag of two first-rounders - a price Seattle walked away from last year when they actually had those picks available. Why would they go back to the well now?
  • I have a creeping hunch that a surprising run on quarterbacks will occur early in the first round. As in all four top prospects (Gabbert, Newton, Locker, Mallett) gone in the top half of the draft, perhaps sooner. The draft is top-heavy with QB-hungry teams and has seen a number of free-agent QB experiments sputter and die this year (e.g. Donovan McNabb, Jake Delhomme, Jason Campbell, Brett Favre, Troy Smith, Kyle Orton, Derek Anderson, Trent Edwards), possibly making the free agent route a little unseemly. Struggling teams need new franchise faces to rejuvenate the fans. Rookie QB's are always a hot commodity. Plenty of GM's and coaches think they have what it takes to turn first-round projects into stars. Combine these factors, and you have the makings of an early run.
  • If Mallett falls to #25, is that really such a hard choice for Seattle? Footwork schmootwork...the only real reason Mallett's stock is falling is those un-confirmable character flags. The guy knows quite well what he has to show in the next few months to maximize his stock. Give the kid a chance. His on-the-field abilities are starting to make him look like the most NFL ready signal-caller in this draft, other than the out-of-reach Gabbert.


  1. At this point, the idea of drafting Mallett is sounding more and more enticing to me. If he falls to the Seahawks at #25, the upside of taking him outweighs in my mind the downside of him failing for some reason.

    I wish we could get some frank talk from Schneider regarding how they have handled the QB position to this point. They could point to the fact that they were desperate to get someone behind Matt last year and it wasn't Seneca. Just the price for a temporary solution that didn't extend past a year is dissappointing.

    March cannot get here quick enough, though Feb 10th is just around the corner. Let the games begin.

  2. Correct me if I'm wrong, but isn't the Kolb speculation separate from the reported intentions of drafting a QB?

    And for what its worth, Philly has gone on record that they are seeking a single 1st round pick for Kolb this year. That means they set the "sticker price" at a 1st, but its conceivable that a high 2nd or a 2nd+ could potential get it done.

  3. Schefter said a couple weeks ago on NFL Sunday Countdown that the price is still two first-rounders. Word seems to be conflicting.

    And Breer was remarking on a couple different possible avenues for Seattle, one of them draft and the other Kolb.

  4. I don't think any of the Big 4 QBs will be around after #15. (And I actually see Mallett as the best of the bunch.) If one lands at 25, the Seahawks would be crazy not to grab him.

    Does Kolb compare favorably with any of the Big 4? Probably not. Is he worth a single #25? I wouldn't, but it isn't out of the question.

  5. Unfortunately, I agree that Mallett will probably not be there. And that he's superior to Kolb as a prospect.

  6. Why not Colin Kaepernick at pick #57? The upside of this kid is great and he has no character issues. He has career totals for rushing and passing = 14,210 yards and 151 TD's These are numbers never seen before in NCAA history. The kid needs some tweaks but would be well worth the effort. Unlimited potential with a smart, dedicated, improving and hard working QB is what Kaepernick brings.