We all know by now that the Hawks' defensive line was largely ignored in the 2011 NFL Draft and will need to be addressed through free agency and trades. The first option is of course to sign undrafted free agents so I wanted to take a look at a few guys that could fit in Seattle.
I've included a short synopsis of skills/knocks based on what I see and take from multiple scouting reports on each player from outlets like the NFL Combine Page, CBSSports, FFtoolbox, Sideline Scouting, and more.
DT Martin Parker, Richmond
Probably the best 3-tech still available after the draft ended, Parker is a small school guy that flew under the radar until he won the game MVP in the East-West Shrine game in front of pretty much every NFL scout in the nation. He was thought of as a little undersized but weighed in there at 6'2, 303. His senior year at Richmond he put up ridiculous numbers - 96 tackles, 13.5 for a loss, and 5.5 sacks. He's a high-effort guy with quick feet and active, violent hands and gets into the pocket well to disrupt the QB. He's a bit of a project, but has some upside that mightbe worth a roster spot.
DT Ollie Ogbu, Penn State
Another interesting 3-tech prospect that was overlooked in the draft. Ogbu has a good first step and plays with good leverage to get into the pocket and disrupt the QB. He's a bit undersized at 6'0 298 but makes up for it with a good motor and decent repertoire of moves, including a decent swim move. According to scouting reports, his best fit would be as a one-gap 3-technique like the Seahawks' defense utilizes so he could come in as depth there. Sideline Scouting interestingly compared him to Jay Alford (when healthy I assume), who is now a Seahawk.
DT Cedric Thornton, Southern Arkansas
Thornton is an intriguing prospect for the Hawks because he has the versatility to play either the 3-tech as an interior rushing tackle or a 5-tech defensive end. He's 6'3, 310 and has decent athleticism. He's quick off the snap and can get penetration into the backfield. He plays with a mean streak and impressive intensity but is inconsistent. He can hold the edge well and has good range and had 13 tackles behind the line in 2010. The Hawks could be interested in him due to his ability to play multiple positions on the line.
DT Anthony Gray, Southern Mississippi
Gray is 5'11 330 and could provide some depth at the 1-tech spot. He's very aggressive off the snap and has pretty decent numbers, as he racked up 17.5 tackles for a loss, 8.5 sacks, 3 forced fumbles, and one pass broken up in his career at Southern Miss. If he can be coached up on his discipline he could be a factor on the d-line for the Hawks.
DE Brandon Bair, Oregon
Brandon Bair is a high energy defensive end that could be a low cost option as depth at the LEO spot and he could play the 5-tech as well. He's 6'6 275 and uses his long arms to use for leverage and to disengage blocks. He uses a variety of moves well to get to the QB and is a high-effort, high motor player. He has good instincts and bats down a lot of balls at the line of scrimmage. Could even play a little DT in passing situations so his versatility could prove helpful to him landing a job. He'd be a 26 year old rookie if signed as he spend 2 years on a LDS mission.
DE Ugo Chinasa, Oklahoma State
Chinasa is a guy that I could see the Hawks looking at as a possible LEO end. He's very fast off the edge and gets good leverage on his way to the QB. He's played DE from a standup position at Oklahoma State so he knows that role well. In his final two seasons there he registered 10.5 sacks and when he's playing at full speed he's got all the weapons you'd want from that position. His main knock is his effort though, so a team that believes they can light a fire under his ass will pick him up. The Hawks could work with their "always compete" mantra.
DE John Graves, Virginia Tech
Graves is another guy that I could see as depth at the 5-tech position and reminds me a bit of Pep Levingston in that a lot of scouting reports on him point out that he'd need to be used in a specific scheme (3-4 DE or Pete Carroll's 5-tech Red Bryant spot) but could be effective if so. He's a good athlete that can get off blocks well, is a hard worker and team leader.