The Seattle Seahawks have selected TCU center Joey Hunt with their 6th Round pick, 215th overall in the NFL Draft.
This is an obvious position of need for the Hawks, and with Patrick Lewis as the projected starter there, Hunt provides some depth and competition. He is undersized at 6'2, 295, but is known to be a strong pass protector from the middle, and per PFF, "did not allow a single sack or hit on the quarterback in 445 pass-block snaps last season."
Joey Hunt led nation with 99.5 pass blocking efficiency allowing zero sacks and only three hurries— PFF Draft (@PFF_College) April 30, 2016
Mike Renner listed him 6th on his center's rankings this year.
Hunt is very undersized at 6-2, 295 pounds and he'll certainly be scheme-limited. That being said, Hunt is arguably the best pass protector in this class, adeptly mirroring inside rushers and having just enough to hold up versus bull rushes. He yielded 10 total pressures over the last two seasons. In the run game though he's much more of a controller than anything else. Some of that was TCU's scheme and some of that is Hunt not having the brute strength to move defensive tackles. If he can go to an outside zone heavy team, Hunt can be effective.
Here's a scouting report from NFL.com's Lance Zierlein.
STRENGTHS Scholar-athlete who brings mental sharpness from classroom onto the field. Instinctive, efficient center. Will climb up to second level rather than linger on secure blocks that are already in the bag. Plays with proper base and mirrors inside linebacker movement on his way up to them on run plays. Quick, darting eyes to find incoming traffic when he senses twists. Plays with functional change of direction ability. Brings feet up under his hips to secure his block and can shuffle them into position while on the move to get defenders pinned. Shows surprising anchor for his size when under duress against bull rush. Flat-back posture in pass sets.
WEAKNESSES Undersized for the position. May not have much room for additional mass on his frame. Nose tackles with length can get into him and control the snap. Can improve balance at contact on second level. Despite a start at guard, his size makes him a one position player. Will face steep increase in strength in quickness from what he's seen in the Big 12. Gets grabby at times and holding penalties have found him more than they should this season. Short arms will always be a concern for him.
DRAFT PROJECTION Undrafted free agent
SOURCES TELL US "Not sure why, but he's been flying under the radar with scouts I talk to all year long. I like him. I think he can play in our league." -- AFC area scout
BOTTOM LINE Technically sound, three-year starter who plays with confidence and consistency. Hunt lacks the size and length that teams look for from draftable centers, but his football IQ, consistency and functional strength give him a shot.
Here's what Tony Pauline had to say.
Positive: Three-year starter awarded all-Conference honors as a junior. Hard-working, competitive center with marginal next level potential. Explosive at the point, quick out to the 2nd level and blocks with knee bend. Stays square, keeps his feet moving and works through the whistle. Displays outstanding vision, awareness and effective blocking in motion. Quarterbacks the offensive line and works well with linemates.
Negative: Possesses average size and growth potential. Not a real mauler in the middle of the line. Average athlete.
Analysis: Hunt gets the most from his ability and plays smart, intense football which could help him catch on as a backup in the NFL.
Here's tape (#55, center):
The Seahawks have 10 selections total in the 2016 NFL Draft.
Round 1, Pick 26 (31): Germain Ifedi, OL Texas A&M
Round 2, Pick 18 (49): Jarran Reed, DL Alabama
Round 3, Pick 27 (90): C.J. Prosise, RB Notre Dame
Round 3, Pick 31 (94): Nick Vannett, TE Ohio State
Round 3, Pick 35 (97) (Comp pick): Rees Odhiambo, OL Boise State
Round 5, Pick 8 (147) (From Patriots): Quinton Jefferson, DL Maryland
Round 5, Pick 34 (171) (Comp pick): Alex Collins, RB Arkansas
Round 6, Pick 40 (215) (Comp pick): Joey Hunt, C TCU
Round 7, Pick 4 (243) (From Patriots):
Round 7, Pick 26 (247):