by: Michael Steffes
One of the biggest questions that will now surround the Seahawks for the next 41 days is who will replace JP?
In another interesting article rising from the aftermath of yesterday’s trade, John McGrath of the Tacoma News Tribune takes a look at this question. He takes an look at Tim Ruskell’s history of finding productive linebackers, and who from this year’s draft class fits the bill.
My feeling is that DD Lewis will definitely get first crack at the starting job, but I am almost certain the team will add a linebacker in the draft now as well. However, I felt they would add a LB last year and they didn’t, so take what I say with a grain of salt. Of course, the need is a little more pressing now. The Hawks have built a nice young group at LB over the last few years with late round picks and undrafted free agents, but be sure to note that the two starters who have been drafted were both taken in the top 100 picks. That could be a route that the Hawks take again in ’09.
McGrath mentions Marcus Freeman (Ohio State), Nic Harris (Oklahoma), Jason Williams (Western Illinois), and Cody Brown (UConn). I would think if we take Ruskell’s draft history into account we can remove Williams from that list. Having only done preliminary scouting on this year’s class, here are two others that I might add to list:
Tyrone McKenzie, USF- It was noted that the Hawks were at the USF pro day. Mckenzie is one of their best prospects. He is pegged as a mid-rounder for a team that values speed over size and bulk. Also, some GM Trivia: Tim Ruskell is an alumnus of what school? Yup, USF.
Kevin Ellison, USC- Ellsion played SS for the Trojans and was one of their hardest hitters and better tacklers. He is also very capable of covering guys as a safety. He is a touch undersized, but we have seen the team take a safety who projects as a pro linebacker before in Will Herring.