After reading through his selections for the Seahawks, I thought it might be fun to share some thoughts in reviewing each pick with a buy or sell approach in my evaluation.
Overall, I tend to believe that Miller is on the right track with some of his selections for the 'Hawks, nevertheless it's the little things that open room for debate.
Of course we are still a long ways away from the end of April, but for the first day of March, let's see what B/R's draft guru has to offer the 'Hawks in his latest draft.
Miami's Lamar Miller is an interesting choice to say the least and B/R's Matt Miller knows that. He even has a good enough sense of humor to anticipate the likely reaction of 'Hawks fans.
"Seattle fans, feel free to copy and paste this comment, I pre-wrote it for you.
"SEATTLE DOESN'T NEED A RUNNING BACK!!!!!!"
Now that we have that out of the way, Seattle does need a running back. Word at the NFL Scouting Combine was that the team is far apart in contract talks with Marshawn Lynch. While this may not be what Seattle fans want to hear, it's the truth."
When put on the table, it's hard to argue with those statements, especially when paired with the followup points Miller has to offer...
The franchise tag could be looming for Lynch, but it would only be a one-year band-aid for a running back who will be just 26 years old in 2012, but has 1,280 touches in his career. The life-span of a running back tops out at close to 30 years old. Lynch could be expected to play three or four more years, but not at his current productivity.
Another risk in tagging Lynch is losing out on defensive end Red Bryant, who is also a free agent. Given the option of re-signing Lynch or Bryant, Seattle should attempt to keep the defensive end over the running back.
Miller blazed the track at the combine, running a solid 4.39 unofficial 40-yard dash. Combined with his 212 lb.-build and soft hands, Miller is the exciting back Seattle needs to replace or complement Lynch.
The Seahawks do technically need to draft a running back regardless of whether Lynch stays. If "Beast" does stay, he still might not be the answer long-term, hence the need to compliment him with a young set of legs that could spice up the offense.
I follow the logic, but it's not the highest priority at the moment.
The 'Hawks may want more running support on offense, but they need either a quarterback or pass-rusher a little bit more.
With the two best options at quarterback likely gone by the time the 'Hawks pick at No. 12, they will likely shift their attention on a pass-rusher. This was the logic before this weekend and Leroy Hill's arrest.
Adding that wrinkle to the story and the need for the 'Hawks to trade down becomes that much stronger.
In an ideal world, the 'Hawks would be able to move down to the late teens or early 20s and draft a hybrid defensive end/linebacker in the mold of Courtney Upshaw or Melvin Engram to fill at least one pressing need while netting an additional pick to potentially cover another need.
Miller says Brandon Weeden, I say Kirk Cousins.
Yet, as anyone who has read my posts the past few weeks may have guessed by now, I'm rather apathetic to the quarterbacks available in this draft after Andrew Luck and Robert Griffin III.
Unless the 'Hawks make a move on securing either Matt Flynn or Peyton Manning in the coming weeks, they will likely draft a quarterback come April, probably in the second or third round.
Weeden is a quarterback and Miller has him in the second round, for today I'm willing to buy into that thinking as the combine did little to alter my perception of anybody who will be available on Day 2 of the draft.
Miller says Keenan Robinson in Round 3, I say Emmanuel Acho in Round 4.
Ultimately we both agree that the 'Hawks need linebacking help and figured adding a Texas Longhorn is the right call.
With LeRoy Hill likely done in Seattle and David Hawthorne potentially becoming overpriced as a result, Robinson might not be the only selection the 'Hawks need to make in filling out their lineup in the middle of their defense.
So while I'd prefer to snatch Acho a bit later (Miller sees him going in the fifth round to the Bengals), Robinson works well in his place.
This pick strikes me as a bit late for a position the 'Hawks need to make a serious effort in filling.
Nothing personal against Crawford who played well at Boise State, but Walterfootball.com ranks him quite low on their list and doesn't really see him as a starter in the pros.
Crawford is a heavy defensive end who is a solid presence at the point of attack. He had a quality week at the East-West Shrine and fared well in the one-on-ones. In 2011, Crawford totaled 44 tackles with 13.5 tackles for a loss, 6.5 sacks and three forced fumbles. In his junior season, he totaled seven sacks, 32 tackles, 13.5 tackles for a loss and one forced fumble. Crawford is not the best athlete, but it looks like he has the potential to be a solid depth player.
Unless the 'Hawks make a move in free agency to pick up a stud pass-rusher, I have a hard time buying this pick.
As much as I would love to buy this pick, Buffalo will get it as part of the Marshawn Lynch deal.
In a way I find it flattering that Miller sees Fangupo as a possible fifth-round pick given how much I've been quietly lobbying for this guy.
Whether or not Red Bryant stays in Seattle, this is a position the 'Hawks could also consider filling and it will be interesting to see what happens with Fangupo in the latter part of the draft...
Standing by my earlier statement on the Tyrone Crawford pick in Round 4, the selection of Smith in the sixth seems like a case of "too little, too late."
Why select two players that might be able to fill the 'Hawks need at defensive end, when you can simply draft one that can play immediately in the first two rounds?
In fairness to Miller, I see that he is checking off another box on the Seahawks laundry list, but I believe there are other players available at this point that could have a more immediate impact and could serve as long-term fixtures.
If you look a little bit further down the board, the Miami Dolphins select Terrance Ganaway.
Ganaway has and will likely remain high on my list, especially if he's still unclaimed at this point. The 'Hawks do need a running back and if Marshawn Lynch stays in Seattle, a guy like Ganaway would help provide a change of pace.
The cornerback from West Virginia seems like the right guy at the right time as Miller starts to wrap things up.
With the 'Hawks secondary maturing into one of the league's best kept secrets, adding a sparkplug like Tandy for depth makes sense.
It's not a pressing need, but this is a nice way of rounding out the roster and the kind of pick that has made John Schneider look like a genius based on past experience with Kam Chancellor and Richard Sherman.
Much like the selection of Tandy earlier in Round 7, adding Brooks to the 'Hawks lineup is a sensible move.
Through the better part of this offseason I've advocated that the Seahawks add depth to the offensive line. While Brooks from Virginia Tech might not be the biggest prospect (6'2", 307), so long as he's healthy and agile, he could be worth having around as this unit tries to rebound from a long and at times trying season in 2011.
At the very least, one can only hope this selection pays off in compensation for Aaron Curry who once upon a time at the opposite end of the draft seemed so promising...yet ultimately came up short.