As I wrote about a week ago in the first part of this article, I tried to make the case for the Seahawks possibly picking Tim Tebow in the first round with the Broncos pick the Seahawks obtained in a draft day trade.
Not surprisingly, some people find it ridiculous to look at next year's draft before this season has even started. Well guess what. The preseason isn't for more than a month and it's never too early to talk about anything when it comes to football.
So here continues the way-to-early look ahead at the 2010 draft possibilities, and, by popular demand, lets make a case for Taylor Mays, the Safety out of USC.
The first glimpse of this guy screams freak. He is 6'3" and 230 lbs. A huge safety who is a tenacious tackler with a mean streak to boot in the mold of NFL superstars Troy Polamalu, Bob Sanders, and the late Sean Taylor. He is larger than all the aforementioned players, but doesn't lack speed. He is a ball hawk and swarms to the play and is effective in run support as well as having good cover skills with size to match up well with larger receivers.
Watching film of him you can see that he often diagnoses the play as it's happening. His ability to either crash the line on run support or drop into coverage quickly is an asset the Seahawks have been lacking in their secondary as of late. In run support he is rarely misguided by jukes as he has no hesitation to run through the ball carrier. In pass coverage he shows the ability to jump routes and effectively get to the play to provide double coverage when needed.
You can see that the kid loves to knock people out, but he doesn't wrap up as well as you would like, relying heavily on his ability to put his shoulder down and plow through his opponents. His knack for hard hitting could put him in trouble with the league with all the new player safety rules (his highlight reels feature a lot of helmet to helmet contact, see video posted at end of the article). Nonetheless, not wrapping up has not hurt his prowess as an open-field tackling machine. I'm sure there's a few Cal receivers in particular who are having nightmares about Mays to this day.
If he focuses on his technique at the next level, which he would get great coaching from a coach like Mora, he will be another superstar safety. He has all the tools and physical gifts to be considered perhaps the best defensive player in the 2010 draft.
Mays is a smart player who could be an immediate difference maker. He could be next year's Aaron Curry, as the best player in the draft, but not necessarily a need for teams picking at the top. He's a Seattle product, having played his high school ball at O'Dea (same school as Nate Burleson), and would fit in nicely with the new, fast-paced defense the Seahawks are installing.
As many have noticed, Seahawk Nation has voiced its opinion about this guy. If the Seahawks are lucky enough to be in position to make a move for him, Mays would be hard to pass by.
Sure, it's a hell of a hit, but let's face it, when it comes down to it he got flagged and gave the team 15 yards and a fresh set of downs.