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What if the Seahawks had listened to Mel Kiper & Todd McShay instead of Pete Carroll & John Schneider?

NFL: Pro Bowl
Pro Bowl QB Andy Dalton
Steve Mitchell-USA TODAY Sports

There’s a popular theme going around the SB Nation NFL blogs this week, and it seems to be fun and enjoyable for those sites, so I figured we’d check in with it at Field Gulls too. Especially since the timeline has an extra-sidebar for the Seattle Seahawks that makes it a little more interesting.

These blogs are going back to 2010 and seeing what their first round picks would look like if their teams had done what Mock Draft Mavens Mel Kiper and Todd McShay said they might do. Of course, there is no significance to what Kiper and McShay think in their mock drafts — they have the right to have their opinions about said players and teams but the puzzle they place together before the draft is meaningless and if they think that Bruce Irvin “is a reach” because they didn’t have them going that high well ... who cares?

The interesting sidebar for the Seahawks is that they of course hired John Schneider and Pete Carroll in 2010, so these are all of their picks side-by-side with all of Kiper and McShay’s picks. It gives us another opportunity to look back at how Pete and John have done in the first round also, but they’ve only picked five times on day one during their tenure, and only three times in the last six years.

Seattle’s first round picks from 2010-2016:

2010: Russell Okung, OT, 6th overall

2010: Earl Thomas, FS, 14th overall

2011: James Carpenter, OT/OG, 25th overall

2012: Bruce Irvin, LB, 15th overall

2013: None (Percy Harvin)

2014: None (Trade out of first round)

2015: None (Jimmy Graham)

2016: Germain Ifedi, OT/OG, 26th overall

Okay, so there are the five dudes we know about, and only two of them remain. Not bad for a perennial playoff team. Now here’s another thing that’s interesting: Kiper nailed 2010. McShay ... not so much.

What Mel Kiper mocked:

2010: Russell Okung, Earl Thomas

2011: Andy Dalton, QB

2012: Melvin Ingram, DE

2013: None

2014: Morgan Moses, OT

2015: None

2016: T.J. Green, S (Notes: Former WR, could be safety or press corner)

“Kiper’s haul”: Okung, Thomas, Dalton, Ingram, Moses, Green

Kiper got off to a rousing start in 2010, correctly projecting Okung and Thomas to the Seahawks. Since then, not really. A lot of people talked up Dalton in 2011, but thankfully Seattle waited another year to get the QBOTF. Kiper also mentioned Jake Locker as a possibility, but Locker went way earlier than 25. Would Dalton have been a better pick than Carpenter? Yes. But not a better pick than Carpenter and Russell Wilson, as it eventually played out.

Ingram was the DE/LB that Kiper slotted to them in 2012, but they didn’t go that route. Ingram has steadily improved in the last couple of years, going from six sacks in his first three seasons combined, to 18.5 sacks since 2015. He is set to be a free agent this year and will likely get very rich(er).

Moses didn’t even go in the first round, he ended up 66th overall to the Washington Redskins. And guess what. He’s really good. He’ll be a free agent after next season, but the Redskins will likely do their best to sign him to an extension. Kiper noted that Seattle might also look at defensive end Stephon Tuitt, a popular mock to the Seahawks that year, but he went 46th overall to the Pittsburgh Steelers. He’s fine, but I think they’re better off with what they have at the position now.

The positives that Kiper notes for Green are his versatility: He could be a safety, press corner, and he used to play receiver. That makes sense then for Seattle to be interested, they love that type of thing, and he has 32” arms, but they didn’t go that route and Green went 57th overall to the Indianapolis Colts. I don’t think his rookie season was notable, one way or another.

Overall, I’d give Kiper’s mocks a pretty good grade here. Every player has turned out well, with the exception of Green, who has not played long enough to warrant a grade at all. Though I know Kiper loves to grade things, so fine Kiper, you get a B+ for talent, a C for accuracy, and a power washer for your hair.

Now here’s what Todd McShay mocked:

2010: Trent Williams, Jason Pierre-Paul

2011: Danny Watkins, G

2012: Chandler Jones, DE

2013: None

2014: Jeremiah Attaochu, LB

2015: None

2016: Germain Ifedi

“Mcshay’s Haul”: Williams, JPP, Watkins, Jones, Attaochu, Ifedi

The Seahawks would love to live in a world where Trent Williams was the tackle they got in 2010. If they could’ve drafted Williams and Thomas, man, that’s perhaps the best one-two draft in NFL history? I’m not looking that up to check but it’s close. Okung was fine, but Williams is Hall of Fame-level. In this scenario, he actually had Okung going fourth to the Redskins. Washington ended up with both Williams and Moses. I remember the 2010 draft well, listening on the radio on my drive home from work as Seattle picked, being happier with Okung than I would’ve been with Williams. I was a fool then, I am a fool now.

JPP would obviously have been a great addition, but nothing can top the acquisition of Thomas at 14. Best pick of the draft, period. I’m glad the Seahawks didn’t blow it. McShay also noted that “Seattle would love to get C.J. Spiller” but hell to the naw. Thomas all the way. Spiller could come in much later, in 2016, for a few games that I’m sure we’ve all already forgotten about.

McShay called Watkins the “best player available.” That was false. The Philadelphia Eagles drafted him 23rd overall, he never really seemed to be committed to football, he was 27 at the time, and he made 18 career starts.

I think it’s obvious that Jones is a better player than Irvin, but is he a better player for the Seahawks? They clearly didn’t think so, as Jones went 21st overall, six spots after they took Bruce. Hindsight being 20/20, I’m not sure how much of a mistake this really was. Would I change it to find out? Absolutely.

I’ll give credit to McShay for saying that Seattle would “likely trade down” in 2014, which they did. Weird that Kiper and McShay both selected offensive linemen that eventually went to Washington, while they also both picked linebackers/pass rushers that ended up going to San Diego. Attaochu went 50th overall to the Chargers and hasn’t been very good, while also being slowed by injuries.

McShay slam-dunked the Ifedi pick, and I’ll give him credit for wanting to trade down out of 32 in 2014, while getting right-position, wrong-player in 2010 with Williams. I have to give him a C- for talent, B for accuracy, and I-dont-know-enough-about-todd-mcshay-to-make-a-joke-here.