Thursday, June 16, 2011

Adam Caplan Clueless on Seattle

I'm a little surprised by how FOX Sports' Adam Caplan graded Seattle's draft yesterday. I've made no secret of my disappointment in this one-dimensional draft, but it's funny that Caplan gives a similar "meh" grade while appearing poorly informed on the state of the team. Let's delve in.

It’s worth noting that Carpenter, according to personnel sources, had as low as a third-round grade from other teams, so it remains to be seen if he’ll be ready to play at a high level as a rookie.

"As low as" a third-round grade? That could mean anything. It could mean that two teams gave him a third-round grade and all the rest gave him a first-round. Using vagueness to create an impression is slanted reporting. This particular statement reeks of bias, and is also uninformed; several other high-profile teams were looking at Carpenter in the late first round. I suppose national writers don't feel beholden to dig for their facts.

Moffitt will be expected to compete for a starting job right away. While veteran offensive lineman Stacy Andrews is projected to start at one of the guard spots, he’s listed with a base salary of $5.25 million for 2011, so it remains to be seen if he’ll be asked to take a pay cut.

This one should be forgiven, because Carroll's coy treatment of the words "competing" and "starting" make it tough to latch onto the team's intentions. But Andrews isn't really projected as a starter. He's been given lip service, but he was awful at guard in 2010 and, as Caplan points out, is a financial drain on the team. None of the stars are really lining up for him continuing at guard, or even on the team. If pattern holds, he will be asked to take a pay cut. Moffitt, for his part, has pretty much been confirmed as a starter by the statements of the wonderfully direct Tom Cable, and there's nobody else on this roster who can feasibly challenge him.

Outside linebacker wasn’t a major need...

Yes, it was. Having a #4 pick at the position does not automatically seal it, Adam.

...wide receiver wasn’t a huge need, but the Seahawks badly needed depth at the position.

Isn't this kind of contradictory? No depth means you have a need.

Besides, the first part's wrong anyway. There is no truly dangerous receiving threat on this roster. Mike Williams has been inconsistent and may have no higher a ceiling that a good #2 (though I have hopes). Brandon Stokley is a free agent as of now, and got left out of Caplan's "free agents of note" list entirely (how does that happen to the most productive free agent from the 2010 roster?). Deon Butler is recovering from a broken leg, and Golden Tate has serious questions about his NFL viability. That sounds like a unit with needs to me. Kris Durham was a big sleeper addition and one of the smartest picks in this draft.

I guess it takes real cynicism to waken me out of lockout hibernation. And I guess I should have let you faithful readers know about my hibernation before I hit the hay. Sorry about that. With optimism rising about an imminent settlement and a 2011 season being possible after all (I'd written it off), I might have reason to start writing again. Keep the faith!