12 Yard Line: Draft Special

Is it football season yet?

Unfortunately there are still several months to go until the beginning of next season, but it is never too early to start getting excited about football. The NFL schedule has been released, several players have found new teams via free agency or trades, and the NFL draft took place over the weekend as the best college players get set to begin their professional careers.

After a narrow defeat to the New England Patriots in Super Bowl XVIX, the Seattle Seahawks have their eyes set on a third straight Super Bowl. The road getting there will be quite difficult as Seattle has one of the toughest schedules in the league playing against both northern divisions and their always-improving rivals in the NFC West. Nine games will be played against teams that made the playoffs last year and five games will be played in primetime.

It is sure to be another exciting season for Seahawks fans and as we wait for that first kickoff, I can introduce you to some of the new faces following the draft:

Frank Clark, DE
The Seattle Seahawks selected Clark with the 63rd overall pick of the draft. This defensive end comes from Michigan in the Big-10 conference. He finished last season with four and a half sacks and showed athletic promise during the NFL combine. However, he has had several off-field issues including being dismissed from the team after being arrested on charges for domestic violence. It will be interesting to see how Clark adjusts when he comes to Seattle. He will also need to work hard in training camp to compete with the defensive ends already on the team, such as Michael Bennett and Cliff Avril.

Tyler Lockett, WR
Lockett was taken with the 69th overall pick out of Kansas State and looks like he could potentially make an impact early in his career, especially on special teams. He has great speed and has been praised for his abilities as a return man and a route runner. However, he is a lot smaller than other receivers. Seattle has a crowded group of wideouts now that includes Baldwin, Kearse, Richardson, and Super Bowl standout Chris Matthews. The group has been criticized for not having a superstar. Perhaps Lockett will be able to fit the mold.

Terry Poole, OG
This offensive guard was picked by Seattle with the 130th pick from San Diego State. The 6’5” and 307 pound lineman will look to find his place in the middle of a group that has been known to struggle in past years. Analysts admire his mentality and say that he never takes a play off.

Mark Glowinski, OG
Seattle followed Poole by getting another big guard who measures in at 6’4” and 307 pounds with the 134th pick. Glowinski comes from West Virginia and played every game his last two seasons as a right guard. He was a second team-All Big 12 selection and was a top performer in the combine with 31 reps on the 225 pound bench press.

Tye Smith, CB
With pick number 170, Seattle went with this cornerback out of Towson to give him a shot at joining the Legion of Boom secondary. He is already known to be a hard hitting corner in open space however he has been criticized for not having a very large frame and that he sometimes struggles against physicality. With Sherman, Lane and newcomer Cary Williams, we will see if Smith can earn his keep.

Obum Gwacham, DE
This former wide receiver from Oregon State has a lot of athleticism but only one year of experience playing defense. It will be difficult for him to find any playing time with his inexperience and an already loaded defensive line.

Kristjan Sokoli, DT
Sokoli is another very athletic defensive lineman who has great speed and explosiveness but after being selected with the 214th pick, he is a longshot from finding any time out on the field during the regular season.

Ryan Murphy, DB
With their last pick of the draft, the Seahawks took the 6’3” 214 pound defensive back out of Oregon State. He certainly fits the mold that Pete Carroll likes at the position but he will certainly have to work hard to find a spot on this team.

Jimmy Graham, TE
Now technically Graham wasn’t drafted by the Seahawks, but they did give up their first round pick—and center Max Unger—to get him. The dynamic tight end was dominant for the New Orleans Saints the past few seasons and he is arguably the best in the league at this position. If the offensive line holds up, Seattle’s offense will be a force to be reckoned with.