2012 NFL Mock Draft: Full 7-Round Projections for the Seattle Seahawks

Josh SteinContributor IIIFebruary 15, 2012

2012 NFL Mock Draft: Full 7-Round Projections for the Seattle Seahawks

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    Mediocrity has been the norm for the Seattle Seahawks the past few years. After coming off a second straight 7-9 season, the goal has been clear for this team: rebuild.

    The draft is obviously key in Seahawks plans, and the past few years the Seahawks have made tremendous improvements to their defense, acquiring Pro Bowl players Earl Thomas, Kam Chancellor and Brandon Browner, as well as up-and-comers KJ Wright and Richard Sherman.

    Although the obvious need that has to be addressed is the quarterback position, the lack of depth in first-round QB talent could have the Seahawks filling other needs first, and getting competition for Tarvaris Jackson afterward.

Round 1: Melvin Ingram, DE/OLB, South Carolina

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    No prospect improved their stock more this season than South Carolina’s Melvin Ingram, who entered his senior campaign as a third- or fourth-rounder, but is now a top flight linebacker and defensive end.

    The versatile Ingram could tremendously improve the Seahawks front line, and could fill the position opposite Chris Clemons.

    His versatility will allow him to switch between defensive tackle and outside linebacker at the next level, depending on the scheme. Ingram is a great athlete and seems to have a knack for being in the right place at the right time to make the big play, and that is a dimension the Seattle front seven is in search for.

    Ingram's unique abilities could send this Seattle defense from a solid to an elite group, in similar light to a  San Fran team that was a dropped punt away from a Super Bowl.

    Round 1 alternative: Robert Griffin III.

    If the Seahawks are willing to give up an abundance of picks, and maybe even players, to get this agile Heisman winner, the quarterback has the potential to turn this team's fortunes. He addresses their biggest need and could be an immediate starter and long-term answer for Peter Carroll and the offense.

    *Other defensive linemen the Seahawks may take a look at include Devon Still and Whitney Mercilius.

Round 2: Nick Foles, QB, Arizona

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    There is a lot to like about Nick Foles as a QB prospect. He has the ideal size, the arm strength to make all the throws at the next level, he put up good stats at Arizona, and has showed accuracy and efficiency.

    He is a good enough athlete but is definitely a pass-first QB. Foles is a smart player coming from a passing system, and he should be able absorb an NFL playbook relatively well.

    The negatives are that Foles did not won a lot in college and his big-game and cold-weather experience is limited. Improvisation is not in his game either. I don’t see a lot of leadership intangibles with Foles, and for how successful he has been individually, he does not carry his team as much as you'd like to see, which is probably preventing him from being a first-round prospect.

    Foles should give steady play at QB, however. Offensive coordinators will like him because he will not try to do too much and will limit his mistakes, which are/were Jackson's biggest flaws. Foles' success will be heavily dependent on the talent around him, and Seattle has a good young cast.

    Round 2 alternative: Brock Osweiler.

    Nick Foles' in-state adversary from Arizona State has similar pro ability and looks to be taken within a few picks of Foles. Both look to be options for the Seahawks in their attempt to find competition for T-Jax.

Round 3: Shea McClellin, OLB, Boise State

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    Although Kellen Moore was the face of one of the most winning teams in Division I history, Shea McClellin was the face of a defense that stonewalled opposing offenses to give the offense extra chances to make history.

    He has a high motor, is intense and versatile. What caught most scouts' eyes was his dominance at the Senior Bowl.

    It is likely that middle linebacker David Hawthorne may depart as a free agent, and K.J. Wright will move inside as the starter. McClellin could slide right in and start as a rookie, but what is definite is the lasting impact he will have. I love this prospect and see him making an immediate impact in this defense.

    Round 3 alternative: Audie Cole

    Picking Cole would give the Seahawks some versatility as he has experience at both inside and outside linebacker. The 'backer from NC State could pop up when the Seahawks make their third-round selection.

Round 4: Tony Bergstrom, OT/G, Utah

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    Tony Bergstrom isn't a well-documented prospect and could fly under the radar coming into the fourth round. He provides the size and strength to become a good role-playing guard on this Seahawk offensive line.

    Seattle's offensive line was ravaged by injuries in 2011, so the team will be looking for a utility lineman who can play multiple positions. Tony Bergstrom could do that, and he might be able to eventually take over at left guard or at center should Max Unger experience health problems.

    One of the Seahawks' biggest issues was providing adequate protection for Tarvaris Jackson, and this pick could add more depth to this depleted Seahawks front line.

    Round 4 alternative: Vick Ballard

    Ballard rushed for 1,189 yards in 2011, averaging 6.2 yards per carry, and had 968 yards along with 19 rushing touchdowns as a junior at Mississippi State. This is a cautionary pick in the event the conditional pick they lost for Marshawn Lynch is the fifth rounder.

Round 5: Terrance Ganaway, RB, Baylor

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    This may not be the Baylor playmaker that everyone is raving about, but Ganaway could make a large impact, especially in respects to the round he is selected.

    He has all the intangibles to be a perfect fit alongside Lynch in a two-back set, which is becoming more and more popular every year. He is a better fit at backup than Justin Forsett, who never really had a place in Seattle, and Leon Washington, whose explosiveness is best suited for the return game.

    As described by ProFootballWeekly:

    "A big, strong, powerfully built back who was challenged by the coaching staff prior to his senior season and responded with the best year of his career, playing his best late in the season."

    He complements Lynch perfectly, but also provides insurance should the worst-case scenario occur and Lynch leaves Seattle.

    Round 5 alternative: Tauren Poole

    This Tennessee power back is strong and thick, and excels in the one-cut zone system the Hawks run.  He's also good enough at blitz-pickup and in the receiving game to be valuable on third downs. He would be able to share carries and give Lynch a break when needed, with enough upside to develop into a starter.

    *The Seahawks lose a conditional fifth- or sixth-round pick to Buffalo from the acquisition for Lynch.

Round 6: Michael Egnew, TE, Missouri

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    If John Carlson leaves as a free agent, the Seahawks may be in the market for a third tight end behind Zach Miller or a backup to challenge Cameron Morrah.

    It seems that having two elite tight ends is the key to success, as the Patriots' two tight ends, Rob Gronkowski and Aaron Hernandez, managed to carry New England all the way to the Super Bowl.

    Michael Egnew from Mizzou, at 6'5" and 245 pounds, might be the man to help the Seahawks get maximum output out of Zach Miller. Young, inexperienced quarterbacks tend to especially rely on their tight ends as their safety net, and with Tarvaris Jackson still not having the full confidence of a elite QB, this reliance may be vital to Seattle's success.

    Round 6 alternative: David Paulson

    Paulson would just be a backup pick in case Egnew is already taken. He was a solid offensive weapon for the Oregon Ducks these past two years and became one of Darron Thomas' favorite targets. He could develop into a reliable second tight end with the right coaching and system.

    *The Seahawks lose a conditional fifth- or sixth-round pick to Buffalo from the acquisition for Lynch.

Round 7: Emanuel Davis, CB, East Carolina

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    Seattle lost their initial seventh-round pick in the Tyler Polumbus deal with the Lions in 2010. Fortunately, they received a separate pick from Oakland for Aaron Curry, and I believe cornerback depth is where they will go with their final pick.

    As deep as the Seahawks are at cornerback, Pete Carroll always looks to add competition. Emanuel Davis was a solid college corner that has great instincts and reaction.

    Drafting Davis, a four-year starter at Eastern Carolina, would supply the 'Hawks with another defender that has tremendous potential and could become Seattle's next Pro Bowl defensive back, of which they had three this past season.

    Round 7 alternative: Dan Persa 

    Persa has a better arm than most prospects and set the NCAA record for completion percentage at Northwestern. He doesn't have the ideal size of an NFL quarterback, but that is not a dealbreaker (see: Drew Brees, for example). Persa did suffer several injuries in college, however, which could be a problem if he wants to last an entire NFL season.