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Coffee and Cigarettes: Seahawks links for Thursday

Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

Already Thursday, gang.

‘The Grantland NFL Podcast’: 2015 NFL Draft Team Needs, Part 1 «
In the first of a two-part podcast, Bill Barnwell and Robert Mays break down each team’s pressing needs with the NFL draft fast approaching.

NFP Prospect Focus: Clive Walford and Nick O’Leary | National Football Post
This year’s NFL draft is not full of quality depth at the tight end position. Still, there are a few that will come in and play and turn out to be very productive NFL players. One of those players is Miami tight end Clive Walford.

NFP Prospect Focus: Chris Conley and Justin Hardy | National Football Post
One of the surprising workouts of the Combine in the wide receiver group was Chris Conley from Georgia. When you look at the numbers he posted, he had an outstanding workout.

NFP Prospect Focus: Preston Smith and Xavier Cooper | National Football Post
If there is any defensive lineman whose stock has risen since the regular season ended, it has been Mississippi State’s Preston Smith. He had a strong week at the Senior Bowl and followed that up with an excellent Combine.

NFP Prospect Focus: Mario Edwards Jr. and Donovan Smith | National Football Post
Today’s focus is on two players who entered the draft as underclassmen. When they first announced their decision to enter, it was meet with skepticism. After viewing a lot of tape, talking to scouts, and watching performances at the combine and pro days, that skepticism has gone away, and both of these players should be drafted long before the second round is over.

FOOTBALL OUTSIDERS: Innovative Statistics, Intelligent Analysis | 2009 NFL Draft: Six Years Later
One of our annual traditions at Football Outsiders come the time leading up to the draft is to look back at the draft that was. Not last year, as is the custom, but six years ago. That gives us sufficient time to form a reasonably decent evaluation of most players selected.

2015 NFL draft positional rankings: Safety |
The 2015 off-season has seen the retirement of Troy Polamalu and the ostensible end of Ed Reed's career, leaving a generational hole to be filled by the new wave of great NFL safeties: Earl Thomas, Eric Weddle, Kam Chancellor, Devin McCourty, et al. But unless some of the names listed below surprise us when they get to the pros, it's not likely that any of the safeties in the 2015 draft class will have that kind of impact—at least, not for a while. There are talented players at the free and strong safety positions, but every player we've listed has issues to be dealt with. Not that they can't be valuable contributors in the NFL, but there is a buyer beware aspect to this safety class.

Sean McGrath planning return to football | ProFootballTalk
Tight end Sean McGrath didn't report to Kansas City Chiefs training camp last year as he elected to retire from football to deal with personal issues. A year later, McGrath is trying to return to his football career.

Workouts and visits can provide a better idea of teams' draft wishlists -
The Eagles want a wide receiver, the Jets and Chargers are looking at quarterbacks, while the Cowboys want to add another pass-rusher. What does everybody else want?

Agent's Take: How Suh and Big Ben will impact new deals for 9 QBs -
Ndamukong Suh isn't a QB, but he's getting paid like one, and franchise passers looking for new deals -- like Russell Wilson and Andrew Luck -- will certainly use Suh's pay day as leverage.

Don't believe the rumors: Winston's going No. 1, Mariota likely No. 2 -
Barring something drastic, Jameis Winston will go No. 1 to Tampa and Marcus Mariota as high as No. 2, depending on trades. Believing anything else is folly.

Sean Payton: Saints need strong RBs and defense -
Coach Sean Payton said Wednesday that the Saints' best teams have always had a strong defense and running game. Will they find the help in the draft to complete a roster turnaround?

What Will Be Left At No. 63? - Seattle - Scout
Predicting the direction Seahawks general manager John Schneider will go on draft day is a tough way to make a living. It was difficult enough when he was selecting within the first 32. But now that there will be 62 players selected before Seattle gets its first opportunity to make a pick in the 2015 NFL Draft, "mocking" the Seahawks is even more difficult.

Keep On Dreaming, Russell Wilson … But Not About Baseball - Oregon Sports News
There was quite a buzz over the weekend on various sports outlets and on social media, stemming from the interview Bryant Gumbel of HBO’s Real Sports conducted with Seattle Seahawks quarterback Russell Wilson. In the interview, Wilson is quoted as saying that “{I} never want to kill the dream of playing two sports,” the second sport being professional baseball. And, he goes on to muse on the possibility that he just may give it a try “one of these days.”

Chasing baseball makes no sense for Seahawks QB Russell Wilson | - Sports
Russell Wilson is the star quarterback of a Super Bowl-winning franchise, so it's understandable that just about anything he says or does is noteworthy around these parts. But with that being said, can we please stop talking about Wilson as a two-sport athlete as if that's something that might actually happen?

Hawks in Hawaii: Jimmy Graham, teammates build chemistry | The Seattle Times
While the Seahawks' official offseason program doesn't start until April 20, Russell Wilson and his teammates got together in Hawaii this week to work out and build team chemistry.

Under Carroll & Schneider, Seahawks draft for the offense | Seahawks Draft Blog
Given Pete Carroll is a defensive minded coach, it’s not surprising that the Seahawks have been overwhelmingly offensive-minded in the first two rounds of the draft since 2010.

Mario Edwards Jr. to meet with the Seahawks | Seahawks Draft Blog
This is an intriguing development. As Garafolo notes, the Seahawks would probably have to trade up to have any shot at drafting him. So what’s the deal?

Seahawks GM fights for families affected by autism
Seahawks General manager, John Schneider and his wife, Traci, are finding new ways to help families affected by autism.

Mike Daniels 'still very angry' about loss to Seahawks -
Mike Daniels won't be getting over the Green Bay Packers' loss to the Seattle Seahawks in the NFC title game. Daniels told "NFL AM" on Wednesday that he's still "pretty hostile" about the topic.

Seattle Seahawks GM says team will be cautious in Russell Wilson negotiations
Seattle Seahawks general manager John Schneider seemed to indicate the organization will be somewhat cautious in what they offer quarterback Russell Wilson in negotiations for a new contract.

Seahawks re-sign wide receiver Ricardo Lockette | Seattle Seahawks
The 28-year-old wideout returns to Seattle for his fifth NFL season.

2015 NFL draft: Learning to scout players like Bryce Petty - NFL -
We live in a golden age of draft information. Fans can view every snap a prospect played last season. And still, come draft day, we’re often left wondering: What do teams see in Player X that the rest of us don’t? At the combine last year I had an illuminating conversation with one NFL scout about Bryce Petty. The Baylor QB, then a junior, had just thrown 32 TDs, and even though he played in a pass-friendly spread, I assumed he was poised to be a first-round prospect in 2015. The scout disagreed; he doubted that any team would give Petty even a first- or second-round grade. I cited several games where the QB had excelled, his gaudy numbers, his NFL physique ... but he wasn’t buying it. “You’re not seeing the game like a scout,” he told me.

Seahawks potential picks: C Hroniss Grasu - Seattle Seahawks | 710 ESPN Seattle
Draft analyst Dan Shonka of mentioned former Oregon center Hroniss Grasu as an option for the Seahawks in the third round. Where does center rank in terms of Seattle's needs and how would Grasu fit? - Blog - 710 ESPN Seattle

Looking back at the best and worst Seahawks draft picks, by round, under Carroll & Schneider | - Seattle Sidelines
With the 2015 draft just a couple weeks away, let’s take a look back at the Seahawks’ draft history under Pete Carroll and John Schneider, highlighting some of the highs and lows, by round, of the picks they have made in five drafts since taking control of the franchise.