The 2019 NFL Draft is less than three weeks away, with teams gearing up to fill the holes in the roster and build depth which hoping to find a late round diamond in the rough. Last offseason I took a look at the distribution of career AVs for draft picks over a multi-decade period in order to attempt to understand what the realistic outcomes for draft picks should be. There is no doubt that while the Seattle Seahawks developed a reputation early in the tenure of Pete Carroll and John Schneider for identifying and developing stars in the later rounds, but is this actually the case?
In order to take a very cursory look at this question as I begin what will be a deeper dive into the subject, I’ve taken the same distribution of draft pick outcomes as last year and added in where the picks the Seahawks have made fall in terms of the same categories. This is obviously of somewhat limited utility, as many of the Hawks players included are still early in their careers and have a chance to move within the table.
For example, 2016 first round pick Germain Ifedi will move from the bottom category of AV<20 up into the middle category of 20<AV<50 just by being healthy enough to appear in a couple of games this season, giving him the bump in AV needed to go from 19 to 20. The same goes for Jarran Reed, who is sitting on a career AV of 18 at the moment, so he likely moves up a category this season as well.
However, many of the players the team has selected will not see the time on the field necessary to move up in category. Kam Chancellor will never get to move above 45 and into the top category, while the 2016 third round trio of Nick Vannett, Rees Odhiambo and C.J. Prosise have combined for a career AV of just 12 amongst the three of them. Even when combined together, those AVs come up short of individual players such as Alex Collins, Spencer Ware and Robert Turbin, and it largely appears to become a matter of recognizing that the team has most certainly missed on a large number of its picks in recent seasons.
Thus, without further wasting time, here are the distributions for the NFL as a whole, as well as for the Seahawks since 2010.
Small sample caveats obviously apply, as well as the need to take into consideration the fact that the multiple players are likely to move between categories in the coming seasons. However, what is readily apparent is that this current front office has not materially outperformed the rest of the league in the later rounds of the draft.