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NFL Draft Grades 2011: The Completely Futile Exercise in Grading The Seahawks' Draft Only Hours After It Has Ended

Round 1, Pick 25 (25) James Carpenter OL 6'4" 321 Alabama

I like this pick a lot. People will say that we overdrafted on this one but the truth is we got a starting right tackle that has the ability to bump over to the guard position with ease. He's athletic, plays with a mean streak, and should help improve the run game. Dirtbag number one. 

Round 3, Pick 11 (75) (From Lions) John Moffitt G 6'4" 319 Wisconsin

Another offensive lineman with the Seahawks second pick. A road-grading Big-Ten guard, he plays with intensity and should help in the run game as well. Dirbag number two.

Round 4, Pick 2 (99) (From Broncos through Patriots) K.J. Wright LB 6'3" 246 Mississippi St.

To be honest I don't know a whole lot about K.J. Wright but what I hear about him I like. He's raw, can play at both the strongside linebacker position and the LEO pass rushing end. The latter might be more likely as he ran a 4.7 forty and has an 80-inch wingspan. He'll most likely just provide depth this season but I like his upside down the line and he's a good tool to have on defense because of his versatility.

Round 4, Pick 10 (107) (From Lions) Kris Durham WR 6'5" 214 Georgia

Durham is a sure-handed, rangy wide receiver that has good acceleration, top straight line speed in the 4.4's, and should compete in the slot or perhaps on the outside as a deep threat. He averaged over 20 yards per catch his senior year at Georgia so he could be a little bit of both. He'll have to beat out Ben Obomanu for time on the field but I like the selection. 

Round 5, Pick 23 (154) (From Chiefs through Lions) Richard Sherman DB 6'3" 195 Stanford

A wide receiver turned cornerback late in his college career, Sherman possesses ball skills commensurate with those of a wide receiver but also excels in press man coverage and re-routing receivers off the line. He's got great size for a cornerback and I'm excited to see how he works out.

Round 5, Pick 25 (156) Mark Legree FS 6'0" 210 Appalachian St.

A ball-hawking safety that brought down 22 interceptions in his college career. He is another versatile playmaker for the Hawks' secondary and it will be very interesting to see where he ends up. He could play either safety position or even contribute in nickel and bandit packages so he stands to see some playing time in year one.

Round 6, Pick 8 (173) (From Lions) Byron Maxwell DB 6'0" 202 Clemson

The third straight defensive back taken for the Hawks here. Good size, aggressive mean streak on the field, and excels on special teams. I see him in a Roy Lewis role - special teams ace, possible bandit package contributor. It's nice to see the Hawks bolstering their secondary with big playmakers.

Round 7, Pick 2 (205) (From Broncos through Lions) Lazarius Levingston DL 6'4" 292 LSU

A bit of a headscratcher at first, but the more I read about him the more satisfied I am with the pick. He's a good athlete at 6'4 292 and projects by most outlets as a 5-tech, run stuffing defensive end. He has the capability to move to the inside but I think the Hawks have picked him with the role of backing up Red Bryant in mind. His combine video re-cap makes me feel a little better about him as it seems he can move around pretty well for his size.

Round 7, Pick 39 (242) (Compensatory Selection) Malcolm Smith OLB  6'0" 225 USC

Value pick for a weakside linebacker that can immediately contribute on special teams. He's an aggressive, intense linebacker and is a freak athlete. Pete Carroll knows Smith well from his days at USC and if Will Herring doesn't return you could possibly see Smith in certain packages for passing situations. Probably the fasted linebacker in the draft this year.

I'm excited to see what Tom Cable can do with Moffitt and Carpenter on our O-Line. I think that K.J. Wright has a lot of potential as a LEO end a year or two down the line and paired with Dexter Davis our future OLB/DE depth looks decent. Durham, though it can be argued that he would have been available later, still seems like a good pick. He's got prototypical size, sinewy strength and no fear going across the middle. His hands are solid and he'll be a big target for whoever the hell is going to be throwing the ball for the Seahawks in 2011.

Richard Sherman is probably my favorite pick. He's got through the roof upside - he's physical, big, can jam at the line or trail receivers, and is super raw after only playing CB for two years. He is a bit of a project but could be a steal in the 5th round. Mark LeGree is another pick that I really like. Another ballhawking safety in the secondary should translate to more turnovers for the Hawks' defense and could be just what the Pete Carroll "bend but don't break" defense needs. The Hawks gave up way too many touchdowns last season with way too few interceptions so this is another value pick in my head. Paired on the field with Earl Thomas the Hawks' could really get creative in what they show the offense. I am looking forward to seeing where he ends up though - whether he'll be backing up Earl Thomas or competing for the spot next to him at strong safety. He could surely play in nickel and bandit packages as well. Byron Maxwell is a special teams freak that could eventually work his way onto the field and has the physical measurables you like to see. 

The defensive secondary is pretty crowded at the moment and it will be really interesting to see what shakes out there with Marcus Trufant, Kam Chancellor, Walter Thurmond, Roy Lewis, Kennard Cox, Josh Pinkard, Marcus Brown, Brandon Browner, James Brindley, Richard Sherman, Mark LeGree, and Byron Maxwell jockeying for a spot on the roster. The Hawks play 5, 6, and 7 DB sets seemingly constantly so I'm sure this stockpiling is no mistake.

Pep Levinston is a 5-tech backup for Red Bryant and seems to be a good body type for it. He's quick, big, tall and uses his hands well to disengage blocks and stop the run. It's pretty damn hard to find a guy Red's size that can move like he can, so Levingston might work. Malcolm Smith will be a good special teamer and could work his way onto the field down the road. 

All in all, how do I feel about this draft?

Pretty good. PRITttttttyyyyyyyyyyyyy... preeeeetttyyy, pretttttyyyyyyyyyyyyyy, .. pretty good.

But not great. Picked up a lot of solid players and the line will look a lot better. The secondary got some skill players as well. There's still a lot of work to do though. I'd probably tentatively grade it at about a B- but really who cares? It will take us a couple years to see how this class pans out so in the meantime it will be fun to see what happens in free agency.