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The Rest Of The West In The Draft: Seattle Seahawks

We evaluated the draft of the St. Louis Rams Tuesday, and the San Francisco 49ers on Wednesday. Today we'll finish up with the Seattle Seahawks - the team many feel had the best draft in the NFL. They were able to land nine very good draft picks while also trading for running backs LenDale White and Leon Washington. Hiring Pete Carroll may have proved to be one of the best moves Seattle made this offseason.

Key Selections

Russell Okung | OT | Oklahoma State

The Seahawks needed this pick. After future Hall of Fame'er Walter Jones retired, the Seahawks leaped at the opportunity to draft Okung sixth overall. He's a tremendous talent, possessing fast hands and feet. He's tall, fast, and smart enough to defend even the most talented defensive ends. The Seahawks needed someone to protect Matt Hasselbeck's blindside and Okung is the one. Even after Hasselbeck is gone, Okung will remain a stalwart on the left side of the offensive line for the next decade.

Earl Thomas | S | Texas

When Thomas fell to the Seahawks' laps, they couldn't have been anymore ecstatic to draft him. He was regarded as the second - if not best overall safety in the draft. Seattle needed a big play defensive back to roam the secondary and bring fear to opposing offenses. Thomas will fill that need while also providing the versatility to play cornerback or return punts.

Player to watch for: Golden Tate | WR | Notre Dame

The Seahawks scored big when they landed Tate in the second round of the draft. He's a small package but has the big play threat written all over him. He's quick off the snap and has very good hands. He can run virtually any route and will fight for the ball with physical cornerbacks. After the catch, he runs like a running back. He's got a big mouth so it will be interesting to see if he can back it up this season. 

Position Not Addressed: Pass rusher

The Seahawks waited till the 4th round to draft a defensive end, E.J. Wilson. He has potential to be a threat rushing off the edge but he'll need a year or two to develop. Until then, all they did was lose Patrick Kerney to retirement and ship Darryl Tapp to the Eagles. If they can't pressure opposing teams, their defensive backs and newly drafted safety will have problems. 

Draft Theme: Taking the Best Player Available

The Seahawks stuck to their guns and went with the BPA through the entire draft. They jumped at drafting Okung and Thomas when they fell to their laps and did the same through the rest of the draft. As a result, Seattle arguably had the best draft in the NFL. The only drawback is that they didn't address some needs and may be a year or two removed from contending for the division title. 

Biggest Steal: Russell Okung | OT | Oklahoma State

Okung was never meant to fall to the Seahawks at the sixth overall position and when he did, nobody in the Seattle war room would've questioned drafting him. He could've landed with the Redskins or Chiefs and leading up to the draft, the Seahawks were projected to draft Eric Berry or Trent Williams. Instead they got the best offensive lineman in the draft and were able to take Thomas with their next pick. 

Biggest Reach: E.J. Wilson | DE | North Carolina

Even with this pick I am hesitent. Wilson can eventually break out into a very good pass rusher, but at this point, he'll learn on the sideline first and be used in a very limited role. Wilson was also projected to land as late as the 7th round, so reaching up to grab him in the fourth was a questionable pick. Rather then drafting Tate in the 2nd round, the Seahawks should have used the pick on one of the top pass rushing defenders that were still available.

Seattle Seahawks Draft Picks(9)

Russell Okung 
Oklahoma State
Earl Thomas
Golden Tate 
Notre Dame
Walter Thurmond
E.J. Wilson 
North Carolina
Kam Chancellor 
Virginia Tech
Anthony McCoy 
Southern California
Dexter Davis 
Arizona State
Jameson Konz 
Kent State

The Seahawks may give the Cardinals fits next year considering how much better they improved as a team. They somehow managed to land two first round picks while also trading for two proven running backs. The entire NFC West recorded one of the best drafts as a division that we've seen in quite some time. Needs were addressed and the race for the title next season will be much tighter then in year's past.