When Pete Carroll and John Schneider woke up on Thursday morning the Seattle Seahawks had just five selections in the 2019 NFL Draft to their name. However, by the time they went to bed they had wheeled, dealed and transformed those five into LJ Collier of TCU and eight more draft picks, including two for Friday’s and six for Saturday.
The trades came as a surprise to no one who has been following the Hawks for the past several years, and set the team up with significant draft capital in the sweet spot of the draft. Specifically from the top of the second round through the middle of the fifth, which is where the production offered by drafted players exceeds the value of signing a minimum salary veteran.
Basically, the area where teams are most likely to find excess value in the draft in terms of production over salary costs are from the early second round through pick roughly pick 150. Obviously, the exact range depends on how deep a particular draft is, but given those general ranges, it should not surprise anyone that Schneider and Carroll currently hold eight selections between picks 37 and 159, which means that if the team stands pat and use each of their remaining picks, they will have made all nine selections in the sweet spot of the draft. There will still be hits and misses, but in terms of maximizing the probability of generating an outsized return on the picks they received in trading down, the Hawks have set themselves up nicely.
I’ll do a far deeper dive into the expectation of value from these picks after the draft is complete once we see if the Hawks actually use their eight remaining selections, or whether they make even more moves and end up with some later picks on Day 3. For now, let’s take a look at how Twitter reacted to the Seahawks trading down. Twice.
First, let’s not pretend like it was any kind of secret that the Seahawks traded back.
The back part of the first round could be fascinating tonight. Picks 21-26 — the #Seahawks to the #Colts — have shown an interest in trading back, I’m told. If the #Giants don’t get a QB at 6 or 17, they may trade back into the 1st for one.— Ian Rapoport (@RapSheet) April 25, 2019
i bet someone that the seahawks wouldn't trade back at both their original first rounders. lol. not feeling great about it— Danny Kelly (@DannyBKelly) April 26, 2019
Can always count on the Seahawks to trade back— Jason_OTC (@Jason_OTC) April 26, 2019
Seahawks gonna trade back with a team wanting to take Drew Lock/Will Grier— Matty F. Brown (@mattyfbrown) April 26, 2019
NFL to create 8th, 9th, and 10th rounds simply to let the Seahawks trade further back to.— Smitty927 (@smitty927) April 26, 2019
Then we can move to looking at the reactions to the first trade back with the Green Bay Packers.
Seahawks picks after the trade back with Green Bay:— Dugar, Michael-Shawn (@MikeDugar) April 26, 2019
If the Seahawks trade back out of 29 too I'll be sick.— Hunne206 (@Hunne206) April 26, 2019
A new year same first round results for the Seahawks.. trade back for picks then select a underwhelming player that no ones ever heard of— Jalen Pahinui (@Jalen_Pahinui) April 26, 2019
Trade back and we riot— Aiden Shearin (@aiden_shearin) April 26, 2019
Happens every year. Seahawks trade back, then we get to watch a string of players that would've been perfect for us come off the board one by one before we get to pick. So frustrating.— Scott Darrow (@Scdarrow) April 26, 2019
The guy we should’ve taken is already gone. Might as well trade back again.— HAWKYOU (@hawkyou72) April 26, 2019
The Seahawks could have the first overall pick in the draft with as much of a can’t miss player as possible available and they’d still trade back— Wake Your Mind Up (@WakeYaMindUpEJ) April 26, 2019
I still dount the Seahawks make a pick. If there's a trade back available, they will take it.— David Wilson (@DavidWilson17) April 26, 2019
I enjoy watching #Seahawks trade back and the fan meltdown that ensues... LOL— Nico Tomacelli (@HypnotiqNico) April 26, 2019
The Seahawks didn't get good value in that 10-spot trade back (2 mid-Round 4 picks), based on traditional value charts. OTOH, given the similarity in the value of the players still on the board in this draft, it could end up being a smart move by them.— Darryl Zero (@Darryl_Zero) April 26, 2019
“Seahawks should trade back and get more picks”— HawksBum (@HawksBum) April 26, 2019
“Why the hell did they trade down again omggggg”#SeahawksTwitter
By the JJ trade chart they lost.— John P. Gilbert (@JohnPGilbertNFL) April 26, 2019
By the Chase Stuart trade chart they came out WAY ahead.
@Seahawks let’s just wait another hour hopefully back to back picks will help ♂️ ♂️ ♂️✌️ but I’m guessing will trade back again— T.J. Patrick (@1PatricK_10) April 26, 2019
Feels like a really bad trade for the #Seahawks. I would've taken Philly's offer, tbh, getting a 4th & 6th to move back 4 spots ...— Steven A. Taylor (@TaylorHandsome) April 26, 2019
Not surprised. They must feel the guy they want will still be there later. Or do they trade back again? #Seahawks— Toshi (@tokelu74) April 26, 2019
And then the second trade.
Trade #2:— Vincent Verhei (@FO_VVerhei) April 26, 2019
Pick 30 is worth 12.9 points.
Picks 37, 132, and 142 are worth 18.1 points.
These are good trades. https://t.co/olnaLjOiFg
The Seattle Seahawks trade the 30th pick that they acquired by trading back with the Packers to the New York Giants, Giants select Georgia CB DeAndre Baker— Sean McDermott (@SeanMcDermott14) April 26, 2019
@Seahawks TRADE BACK IN RN AND TAKE NKEAL HARRY U PIECES OF SHIT— Fuck the dumbass Seahawks (@KobeCantTweet) April 26, 2019
But No. 30 is traded to the New York Giants. One pick and two trades back. It was a very Seahawks kind of first day of the draft.— Nick Patterson (@NickHPatterson) April 26, 2019
When I see the Seahawks continue to trade back. pic.twitter.com/6OBYyw1LD4— Alex Mills (@Coach_Mills25) April 26, 2019
The Seahawks just should stop drafting in the 1st round. They always reach for round 2/3 players anyway. Just trade back— Wes (@wesfrdrk) April 26, 2019
Seahawks need to trade one of these 2 back for tomorrow— Fes Ashburn (@Fesluv) April 26, 2019
I selfishly wanted Seattle to take AJ Brown and Harry. Don’t hate the trade back though. Always like teams getting more assets.— George Reed Jr (@bftgpod) April 26, 2019
I have no issue with the trading back. I think if you can trade back and acquire more assets that’s a smart strategy vs trading up and giving up future assets. That was a good move by Seattle.— George Reed Jr (@bftgpod) April 26, 2019
Now, one thing that seems to have confused a lot of observers was why it took so long for the Seahawks to make their pick at 29. The answer to that lies in the fact that if a team allows the clock to expire on their pick, the team selecting behind them has the opportunity to run to submit their pick. Thus, when the ten minutes allotted for the Seahawks selection at 29 ran out, the team holding pick 30 had the opportunity to race and submit a pick. Except in this situation, the Hawks held both picks, so there was no rush for the team to submit their first pick while they explored trade opportunities and made sure they had everything in order. Fans were impatient, but this isn’t the team’s first rodeo, and Schneider was in no rush, knowing that he had the full twenty minutes.
Watching the Seahawks draft is like watching the Seahawks on offense.— John P. Gilbert (@JohnPGilbertNFL) April 26, 2019
In short, patience is a virtue when the Seahawks are drafting.