Bruce Irvin was drafted as a defensive end and spent his entire rookie season at that position. Now the Seahawks plan on converting him to outside linebacker, according to the Tacoma News Tribune.
Irvin led all rookies with eight sacks last season, but he struggled in run support and was kind of a one-dimensional player. Once he's done serving his four-game PED suspension, he will compete with Malcolm Smith for a starting job alongside K.J. Wright and Bobby Wagner.
Irvin isn't completely done at defensive end. Coach Pete Carroll says that he will still be one of the team's main pass rushers on third down, suggesting that he will still line up with his hand on the ground from time to time. From the News-Tribune:
"He's extremely versatile, and that's why we've loved him from the start," Carroll said. "He's really fast. He's 250 pounds, and he's exactly fitting the right kind of body type to play outside backer in the 3-4 system. We're a 4-3 personnel system that plays 3-4 looks. He's extremely valuable for us."
The Seahawks have more versatility on the defensive line than they did last season. Newly acquired Cliff Avril is expected to play in the LEO role while Chris Clemons recovers from his torn ACL. How well Irvin transitions to the linebacker role will depend on how he does moving in space and how much his run defense improves.
I think it's a good move and a better use of his talents than trying to make him a full-time DE. What say you?