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Locker has shown he can throw on the move and extend plays with his legs. But can he progress through NFL reads?
Using a prior article that blended nine different mock drafts, consensus picks were made for each of the first 24 draft slots. Gone was my preferred pick, Jimmy Smith. It seems a little too early for Ras-I Dowling, but not by much.
Jake Locker: The need at the QB position is obvious, and one that Seattle needs to figure out. I fear Locker will actually be gone by this point, though. While options like Ponder or Dalton might be serviceable in the NFL, neither makes me think "this is the QB that will lead a team to a Super Bowl."
Locker could be that guy. The speculation on his accuracy and decision making continue to spin, but he has the potential to be a star franchise QB.
I continue to contend that accuracy is not an issue for Locker. Yes, his completion percentage was lower than Gabbert's, but Locker led him in virtually every other category. Even Locker's yards per attempt was hire despite the variance in completion percentage.
The Huskies had the worst offensive line in the conference, leading to a lot of balls being thrown away and having to throw before plays had time to develop. His numbers were also impacted by dropped passes. Locker also threw the ball down the field, whereas most of Gabbert's completed passes were within five yards of the line of scrimmage. Time and again he'd throw bubble screens or swing passes, even on third and long.
ability to read NFL defenses and go through progressions to find the open receiver.
Jake tucked the ball an ran a lot at UW; he had to with the nature of his offensive line. He won't survive in the NFL doing the same.
If the Seahawks opt to pass on him here, they could be sending a signal that they are less worried about 2011 results, and instead, are looking at the 2012 draft to snag their franchise QB.
Trade Down: Seattle needs draft picks, and there will be several QB-needy teams that will be worried about what Seattle will do here. Again, if Seattle does not see their franchise QB in this draft, they could move down and target a player like Dowling with their new pick. A likely third round pick could be used on the defensive line for a player like Drake Nevis.
Miles Austin, DT North Carolina: Austin likely would have been a top 15 choice had he not missed the 2010 season, and if not for character concerns. He might be a potential pick if Seattle uses the preceding idea.
Defensive End: Cameron Heyward and Adrian Clayborn are both on the board. Both of them have big question marks around their performance in 2010 though. They lacked consistency, which is a huge issue for a Seahawk team that was up and down all season.
Offensive Line: Many fans want to take the best offensive lineman available. This is a short-sighted goal that could set the franchise back even further. This is the same kind of reasoning that led to Chris Spencer instead of Logan Mankins...we need a center, so take the best one regardless of whomever else is available. There will be a solid guard available in round two and Seattle needs to wait and get better value there.