Why Tim Ruskell Will Target Patrick Chung

I said Patrick Chung is the safety Seattle GM Tim Ruskell is most likely to draft. Here's why:

Games Started: 51

Conference: Pac 10

Considered a Team Leader: Yes

Production: 236 solo tackles, 148 assisted tackles, 9 interceptions, 17 passes defensed, 4 sacks and 3 forced fumbles.

More Tackles Than: Bob Sanders

More Interceptions Than: Troy Polamalu

Team Record: 35-16

Known Weaknesses: Size, Speed

Gritty Like: Sandpaper

Instantly Improves: Seattle's punt return unit and kickoff and punt coverage

But a few factors prohibit Chung from being a slam dunk pick.

Oregon's Pass Defense: Ranked 111th

College Position: Rover

Coverage Skills: Raw

Chung could be a final piece in Seattle's transition to a Tampa 2. He would assume strong safety moving Deon Grant to free safety. Chung is a tackling machine that could have a Bob Sanders like impact on Seattle's run defense by being the first body in a gang tackle or by capping long runs before they bust free.

Seattle's pass defense is designed to limit big plays and pure coverage is not Chung's game. An easy fix, and given Gus Bradley's Tampa 2 roots, perhaps the expected fix, is to employ Grant and Chung in a cover 2 soft shell. The two would thrive covering halves. I've mentioned that Seattle seems poorly equipped personnel wise to convert to a Tampa 2, but it's amazing what a productive and focused offseason could do. This lineup looks pretty capable:

RDE: Darryl Tapp

RDT: Brandon Mebane

LDT: Jovan Haye

LDE: Lawrence Jackson

WLB: Will Herring

MLB: Lofa Tatupu

SLB: Julian Peterson

RCB: Josh Wilson

SS: Patrick Chung

FS: Deon Grant

LCB: Marcus Trufant

The line is young and the interior is disruptive. Tapp isn't elite, but he's a strong edge rusher that could provide consistent pressure. Herring is an excellent cover linebacker that would benefit from engaging running backs away from the scrum. Both Tatupu and Peterson are good cover linebackers and both are excellent run stoppers. Wilson is a natural Tampa 2 corner and would benefit from safety help over the top. Trufant is versatile, has flashed excellent ball skills and is a strong run stopper. It's not guaranteed to be elite, but it's only a second pick and a modest free agent contract from possible.

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