Seattle Seahawks

A look at what the Seahawks will do in all seven rounds of the 2019 NFL draft

Analyzing the Seahawks’ options in the 2019 NFL Draft

Gregg Bell breaks down who the Seattle Seahawks might take in this year's NFL Draft.
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Gregg Bell breaks down who the Seattle Seahawks might take in this year's NFL Draft.

It’s different. But get ready for some of the same.

Because of trades and the lack of compensatory draft selections this year, the Seahawks have just five picks in the 2019 NFL draft. Their first two are in tonight’s first round.

Their five choices are tied with Chicago for fewest in the NFL.

They aren’t going to end up with five picks.

Coach Pete Carroll and general manager John Schneider have traded their first-round choice in seven consecutive drafts. Expect them to make it eight tonight, and to gain up to three more choices in later rounds for a total of seven this weekend. That would still be the fewest of the Carroll-Schneider regime that started in Seattle in 2010.

This draft is loaded with a historically deep pool of talent on defense, specifically defensive linemen expected to go in rounds one through three. That’s why the choice the Seahawks want the most but currently lack is in round two.

So, yes, look for another trade down to get that.

“We’ve done a really good job kinda beating up guys a little through the process, especially the first three rounds, then there appears to be a slight drop off,” Schneider said.

General manager John Schneider and coach Pete Carroll discuss the Seahawks’ 2019 draft on the eve of it starting

“Defense as a whole, it’s a really good draft.”

Good thing for the Seahawks defense is what they need most.

Edge pass rusher became the most urgent of those needs Monday when the Seahawks traded top sack man Frank Clark to Kansas City for the 29th pick in round one tonight. Seatle also got a Chiefs’ second-round choice next year, and the teams swapped third-round selections for Friday.

Round one is tonight starting at 5 p.m., with each team getting up to 10 minutes to decide. Rounds two and three are Friday beginning at 4 p.m.; teams have seven minutes to pick in the second round and five minutes from rounds three through six. Teams have four minutes to choose in the seventh and final round.

The draft ends concludes with rounds four through seven Saturday, beginning at 9 a.m.

Here is my (semi-educated, semi-hunch) predictions for how the Seahawks’ draft will go this weekend:

Seahawks’ 2019 seven-round mock draft

Round 1, 21st overall: Trade with the New York Giants for New York’s second-round pick at 37th overall, one of the Giants’ three choices in round five (143rd overall), their second of two picks in the seventh round (245) and an early-round choice in 2020.

Yes, another trade at the top of the draft. Like rain and blossoms around here, it happens every spring.

If elite edge rusher Rashan Gary from Michigan is still available at 21 because of his reported flagging for a torn labrum in his shoulder, Seattle doesn’t trade this pick. They take him, and trade down from 29 instead.

Round 1, 29th overall: Jeffery Simmons, DT, Mississippi State

The 6-foot-4, 301-pound Simmons is a top-10 talent but had knee surgery in February. That pushes him down to Seattle’s new pick the Chiefs gave up in the Clark trade. Simmons may not play until late this year, if at all. That makes him yet another Schneider/Carroll risk at the top of the draft.

Don’t be surprised if the Seahawks trade down out of this pick, too, especially if they believe Simmons will continue to slide toward round two—or if the late rumor proves true that NFL draft guru Rob Rang of Tacoma heard, that Montez Sweat could slide to the second round because of concerns about an enlarged heart.

Jeffery Simmons lead.jpg
FILE- In this Sept. 1, 2018, file photo, Mississippi State defensive tackle Jeffery Simmons (94) pushes through a double team during the first half of an NCAA college football game against Stephen F. Austin in Starkville, Miss. Simmons is a possible pick in the 2019 NFL Draft. (AP Photo/Rogelio V. Solis, File) Rogelio V. Solis AP

Round 2, 37th overall (from Giants in projected trade): Chauncey Gardner-Johnson, S, Florida

A versatile, 210-pound runner (4.48 40-yard dash) who can either be a single-high cover man in Seattle’s scheme or potentially cover slot receivers as a nickel back. He excelled doing both at Florida, in the ultra-competitive Southeastern Conference. Hmmm...the Seahawks lost All-Pro safety Earl Thomas and nickel defensive back Justin Coleman in free agency last month. Needs meets opportunity here. This is why the Seahawks want a place in the second round.

Round 3, 92nd overall: Miles Boykin, WR, Notre Dame

At 6 feet 4, 220 pounds with an eye-catching 40-yard dash time of 4.42 seconds and a 43 1/2-inch vertical leap, Notre Dame’s leading receiver last season has the size Carroll loves with speed and hops the veteran coach covets. Seattle lacks bigger receivers, but it keeps trying to find one (Brandon Marshall, Amara Darboh, David Moore, Kenny Lawler). The Seahawks’ wide-receiving group is Doug Baldwin, Tyler Lockett—and a bunch of guys. And Baldwin just had his third surgery of this offseason and faces an uncertain return and future at age 30.

That makes this position and this pick more of a priority than it was a couple months ago.

Round 4, 124th overall: Charles Omenihu, DE, Texas

The Big 12 defensive lineman of the year last season with 9 1/2 sacks is still something of a project, but with upside the Seahawks will believe they can maximize. Omenihu had 7 1/2 sacks in his first three seasons for Texas. He has the length, at 6-5, the Seahawks like in pass rushers. The last Longhorns defensive lineman the Seahawks went after, 2018 undrafted rookie nose tackle Poona Ford, has worked out very well so far.

Round 5, 143rd overall (from Giants in projected trade): Renell Wren, DT, Arizona State

The Seahawks’ kind of project: still-developing, ultra-athletic, 6-5, 318 pounds. NFL draft guru Rob Rang from Tacoma says Wren “may possess the most explosive first step off the ball of this year’s defensive tackle class – which is exceedingly rare for a man of his size.” Why is he still available on day three? Rang says: “While he can blow up the center and ruin runs before they even get going, he is sushi-raw with his technique and awareness of the football, only starting one year for an Arizona State squad that, frankly, lacked defensive standouts. Still, he would be an ideal project for (Seattle defensive line coach Clint) Hurtt.” Sushi-raw? Carroll and his Seahawks coaches usually devour those kind of challenges.

Round 5, 159th overall: Myles Gaskin, RB, Washington

Carroll and Schneider had a cross-city view of Gaskin’s historic career at UW. He was first player in Pac-12 history to rush for 1,000 yards in four seasons. The Huskies’ career leader in rushing yards (5,323), rushing touchdowns (57) and total TDs (62) has what Carroll loves: a chip on his shoulder. He said at the league’s scouting combine he believes he’s being overlooked for the NFL. He’s trying to stay bigger, close to 200 pounds, and show he can catch passes. The Seahawks can’t count on running back C.J. Prosise to stay healthy to be a situational back after three seasons of mostly missed games. And 2018 third-down back Mike Davis signed with Chicago last month. The last running back the Seahawks drafted on day three turned out OK: 2017 seventh-round pick Chris Carson rushed for 1,151 yards for them last year.

Washington Huskies running back Myles Gaskin at NFL combine his experience at UW, on being relatively overlooked motivating him.

Round 7, 245th overall (from Giants in projected trade): Jazz Ferguson, WR, Northwestern State (La.)

Great name. Even better size and speed—which, again, Carroll loves in wide receivers but has rarely had in Seattle. He is 6-5, 227 pounds—and runs a 4.45 40. Some in Louisiana thinks he can run a 4.3 His is the kind of backstory Carroll also finds attractive. Ferguson began his career at LSU but then had academic issues and failed a drug test. He landed in state at the Football Championship Subdivision Demons. He paid his own way his first year at Northwestern State because he didn’t have the grades to qualify for a scholarship. He worked to pay for school that year while playing on Northwestern State’s scout team. In 2018 the former LSU washout and lower-division scout-team walk-on became the Southland Conference’s offensive player of the year.

Overcoming adversity and being humbled, two of Carroll’s most desired traits in players: Check.

Gregg Bell is the Seahawks and NFL writer for The News Tribune. In January 2019 he was named the Washington state sportswriter of the year by the National Sports Media Association. He started covering the NFL in 2002 as the Oakland Raiders beat writer for The Sacramento Bee. The Ohio native began covering the Seahawks in their first Super Bowl season of 2005. In a prior life he graduated from West Point and served as a tactical intelligence officer in the U.S. Army, so he may ask you to drop and give him 10.

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