In 2011, the Seattle Seahawks Select ...

It is never too early to start talking about next year’s draft. The NFL draft is by far the most popular offseason activity, with stakeholder groups watching from around the country. The 2010 television audience was up 30 percent from last year’s, and expanded viewership isn’t a trend that will go away.

With so much interest in the draft, is it any surprise there are several 2011 NFL mock drafts already published? When the networks feel it is necessary for Jason La Canfora to announce selections to the television audience before Roger Goodell even makes it to the podium, I would imagine there is demand for mock drafts, even this early.

Even before the draft order is set or before the athletes play their final season at the collegiate level.

It is close to shooting from your hip in the dark, but these skilled analysts can be eerily accurate; check out Andrew Perloff’s 2010 mock draft – published in April 2009 – that guessed two of the top three picks correctly.

The big surprise? A lot of 2011 mocks don’t have Jake Locker being selected first overall. Locker could have been the first player chosen in this year’s draft but he opted to return to the University of Washington for his senior season.

The not-so-big surprise? The analysts aren’t fooled this year, and a majority of them have the Seattle Seahawks picking very early in 2011. Perloff, who writes for SI.com, has the Seahawks selecting first overall.

Here’s a look at what the Seahawks are doing in a handful of 2011 mock drafts:

Andrew Perloff, SI.com:

1. Seattle Seahawks
Ryan Mallett, QB, Arkansas
The former Michigan quarterback has the most NFL-desirable skills in this deep QB class.

Todd McShay, ESPN.com:

12. Seattle Seahawks
Ras-I Dowling, CB, Virginia
Dowling appears to possess a stronger overall skill set than former teammate Chris Cook, whom the Vikings selected with 34th overall pick in the 2010 draft.

Peter Schrager, Fox Sports:

14. Seattle Seahawks
Adrian Clayborn, DE/DT, Iowa
Pete Carroll and Jon Schneider’s rebuilding plan continues in the 2011 draft, where the versatile Clayborn falls to them at 14. The Seattle pass rush suffers in 2010 without Daryl Tapp or Patrick Kerney and the ‘Hawks enter the 2011 draft knowing the position is their top need. Clayborn, the star of the 2009 Orange Bowl, finds his way into the top 15 after an All-Big Ten campaign in Iowa City.

Walter Cherepinsky, WalterFootball.com:

5. Seattle Seahawks
Ryan Mallett, QB, Arkansas
Seattle didn’t select Jimmy Clausen in the 2010 NFL Draft because they’ve dedicated too many resources to Charlie Whitehurst. But if the Seahawks finish with one of the five worst records in the league, chances are that Clipboard Jesus didn’t perform too many miracles (yes, great play on words, I know).

The dream scenario for the Seahawks would be for hometown hero Jake Locker to stay in the Pacific Northwest. Unfortunately, that doesn’t happen in this 2011 NFL Mock Draft edition.

Matt McGuire, WalterFootball.com:

5. Seattle Seahawks
A.J. Green, WR, Georgia
Seattle needs to get younger and more talented at receiver, and if they truly believe in Charlie Whitehurst then they will be forced to build around him (and pray to the quarterback gods). Green can really go up and pluck the ball at its apex. He’s a smooth athlete after the catch and a solid route runner.

NFLDraftDog.com:

6. Seattle Seahawks
DeAndre McDaniel, S, Clemson
Safeties don’t usually get drafted this high, but he played lights out as a junior.

MyNFLDraft.com:

12. Seattle Seahawks
Andrew Luck, QB, Stanford

Shaun Dolence: [email protected]
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Tags: 2011 NFL Draft 2011 NFL Mock Draft A.J. Green Adrian Clayborn Andrew Luck DeAndre McDaniel Jake Locker John Schneider National Football League NFL Draft Pete Carroll Ras-I Dowling Roger Goodell Ryan Mallett Seattle Seahawks

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