Seahawks Post Draft - More Undrafted Free Agents to Watch: Linebackers

Because John Schneider explicitly mentioned the other day that the Seahawks had an undrafted free agent linebacker in mind, I'll go ahead and profile a few of them that I believe could be a fit here in Seattle. I spoke on it a bit before the draft that depth at the linebacker position is a bit tenuous at the moment so it's nice to see that the Hawks are determined to add more players that fit their system.  

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 PageCBSSportsFFtoolboxSideline Scouting, and more. 

ILB Jeff Tarpinian, Iowa

Tarpinian is a slightly undersized yet athletic inside linebacker. He fits into the Carroll defensive mold because of his speed and agility though, so could be an option. At 6'2, 235, he ran the forty in the 4.5 range but his most impressive numbers would be on his 4.10 short shuttle and 10-5 broad jump. The 4.10 short shuttle is pretty impressive and would have come in as the 5th best at the Combine had he been invited. This type of agility and change of direction speed, combined with the fact he's an explosive hitter that's effective in run defense makes him an attractive target. He's good enough to hang with tight ends in coverage and may be a good fit in the Hawks' defense that requires the Mike linebacker to cover the middle third of the field in some situations. He's a former QB that was named the Gatorade Player of the Year for the state of Nebraska, so taking his signal calling and playmaking abilities to the defensive side was a natural process.

ILB Alex Wujciak, Maryland

A prolific producer in his college career, Wujciak amassed 381 tackles, 4 interceptions, and 4 forced fumbles in only 3 seasons. He's extremely instinctual and disciplined and maintains his gap assignment. He has good size at 6'2, 250 and is a solid tackler. His liabilities lie in man coverage and will not be much of a pass rushing weapon. However if asked to maintain zone coverage he is reliable and could excel in the right situation. 

ILB Mario Harvey, Marshall

As I wrote on Harvey before the draft, he's nicknamed "Thumper" due to his big hits and he was a Butkus Award semi-finalist and the only non BCS linebacker to be represented there. He averaged 11.9 tackles per game and had 143 total tackles (65 solo), 17.5 tackles for loss, 8.5 sacks, three forced fumbles and a fumble recovery in his senior season. At his pro day, he ran a ridiculous 4.42 forty and had a 32" vert, a 9'5" broad jump and put up 27 reps on the bench. The Hawks want to get younger, faster and more physical and Harvey fits that bill with his athleticism and tenacity. 

OLB Michael Morgan USC

At 6'3, 225, Morgan is a speed linebacker, that, according to Sideline Scouting, "Is a very quick defender, uses small frame to outmaneuver blockers and sneak through small gaps to get to the ball carrier. Fairly versatile coming off the end of the line, can speed rush off the edge, and takes good, flat angles to cut off ball carriers at the line of scrimmage. Excellent change-of-direction ability, breaks down well and can make quick cuts to mirror offensive players. Surprisingly good at shooting gaps in pass-rushing situations, is not limited to blitzing outside. Displays good speed, plays faster than timed speed. Could make an immediate impact as a special teams performer at the next level, displays quickness to block punts and speed to get down field in kick coverage." I write that verbatim because that sounds so much like a Pete Carroll/John Schneider type of guy. Rangy, versatile guy that can use his athleticism to do whatever's asked of him. When it refers to his ability to play faster than his timed speed, that's pretty damn impressive considering he was timed at 4.46 in the forty at his Pro Day. He's very strong as well, as he put up 225 27 times. 

His main knock is that he's undersized for the position and lacks the frame to be an every down player in the NFL. He also has lower production from his career at USC but all in all I wouldn't be surprised to see this guy's name come up down the road.

OLB Adrian Moten, Maryland

Another Maryland linebacker in the mix. Moten is a tough, versatile player that could possibly play strongside at the next level but most likely will play on the weakside or middle. A bit undersized at 6'2, 225, but makes up for it with his quickness and athleticism. He's an instinctual linebacker that picked off 4 passes 2010 and recorded 10 passes defensed, so he jumps out from the page at you as another 'ballhawk' type of guy that Carroll is trying to stockpile. He's got great lateral agility, is quick off the snap count and does well shedding blocks. He also had 6 sacks and 9 tackles for a loss so could have some potential in blitzing situations.

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