It's now less than two weeks before the 2023 NFL draft, 12s! The Seattle Seahawks are loaded with high draft capital so it should be an exciting watch. Plus, we all know how much John Schneider loves trading down (or maybe up?) during drafts so anything can, and likely will, happen in this month's draft.
Of course, this is also the time of year when everyone and their sister produces mock drafts. We have done a bunch of our own. No one, obviously, really knows what Seattle will do during the draft, though. Even taking a quarterback at pick number 5 overall isn't even out of the question.
ESPN's Mel Kiper, Jr. put out his latest mock draft for rounds 1 and 2 this week. In it, Kiper guesses that the Seahawks get some potentially great defensive players but also trades back up into the first round to take their quarterback of the future. Three first-round choices? It's possible.
Seahawks grab three in the first round of 2023 draft in Mel Kiper's latest mock
To get back into the first round, Seattle would give up its two second-round picks to the Philadelphia Eagles for pick number 30 overall. More on the quarterback at number 30 in just a bit, but let's start with who Kiper thinks Seattle chooses at number 5 and number 20. And if you are a fan of a player who might be excellent but also has some recent off-field issues, then you are going to love Kiper's mock.
At pick 5, Seattle would take Georgia's Jalen Carter. Carter is off the hook for the most part on misdemeanor charges of reckless driving and racing from an incident in January that resulted in the deaths of two people in the other vehicle involved. He did show up out of shape for his pro day in March, but his college tape is so good it likely outweighs the January incident and the bad pro day.
To be fair, Carter is still a young man and has just as much chance as anyone else to come to Seattle, prove he is great in the locker room, and be fantastic on the field. He looks physically capable of being dominating at defensive tackle. Team him with Dre'Mont Jones and the Seahawks DTs could be greatly improved over 2022.
At pick 20, Seattle would take defensive end Myles Murphy. If I had a guess, I would think Murphy will be gone before pick 20, but if he is around and Seattle chooses him then the defensive line should be much better with the additions of Carter and Murphy. Murphy is 6'5" and 276 pounds and had 63 quarterback pressures at Clemson over the last two seasons.
But in Kiper's mock, the Seahawks move back into the first at pick 30 and takes Tennessee quarterback Hendon Hooker. Geno Smith was re-signed this offseason to a three-year deal but the contract is structured where Seattle wouldn't lose much cap space if Smith isn't around in 2024. Hooker is coming off a knee injury and there should be questions about whether he was a system quarterback in college, but he has excellent running ability, is a smart QB, and has great accuracy. He could be the starter after next season.
Jarran Reed is happy to be back
On Wednesday, Reed spoke to a group of reporters who cover the Seahawks and said while it was partly a business decision to return to Seattle, he also thinks the organization is simply different in the way the team treats their players. We have heard this before from other players, but it's nice that the feeling is still there among current players. According to Reed:
"It’s just more than football (here). Some organizations it’s strictly football, and they want you to be a certain type of way, act a certain way, look a certain way, dress a certain way. Here they just let you be you."
12s should be happy Reed is back as well. He might not get to 10 sacks as he did in 2018, but he still can supply the kind of interior pass rush Seattle has missed basically since he left. And since Reed will be teamed with Dre'Mont Jones (and maybe Carter, if Kiper is correct), Reed should have a very productive 2023.