It didn’t take long for the Seattle Seahawks to shake up the final day of the NFL Draft.
Moments into the fourth round, Seattle acquired a pair of restricted free agents—running back LenDale White and defensive tackle Kevin Vickerson—from the Tennessee Titans in exchange for trading down seven spots in the 4th round, and nine spots in the 6th.
In the fifth round, the Seahawks once again shook things up, trading their pick—the 139th choice overall—to the New York Jets in exchange for Leon Washington and a seventh-round pick in this year’s draft (236th overall). A restricted free agent running back coming off a gruesome leg injury, Washington led the NFL in all-purpose yards in 2008, earning Pro Bowl and first-team All-Pro honors for his return ability.
By acquiring White and Washington, the Seahawks are likely to release running back Julius Jones.
Signed to a five-year deal by the previous front office regime, Jones hasn’t cracked the 700-yard rushing mark in either of his two seasons, and with emerging talent Justin Forsett usurping Jones’ carries late last season, Jones and his $2.45 million dollar base salary are now expendable with Washington and White on the depth chart.
In between trades, the Seahawks selected Oregon cornerback Walter Thurmond, a 5-11, 189-pound cornerback/return specialist who was headed towards being a first- or second-round selection before a knee injury last September ended his college career. A fourth-year starter up until his injury, Thurmond finished his career with 37 pass break-ups and 12 interceptions, three of which he returned for touchdowns.
Thurmond added two additional touchdowns during his career, including one 78-yard punt against Utah last September. Thurmond was new to returning punts last season, yet averaged 15 yards on 11 returns before his injury. If Thurmond recovers from his knee injury, he’ll add quality depth behind starters Marcus Trufant and Josh Wilson at cornerback, will challenge for the nickel corner role, and provide the Seahawks with another game-breaking threat in the return game.
With the second of their two fourth-round picks, the Seahawks selected 6-3, 286-pound defensive end E.J. Wilson out of North Carolina. A three-year starter, Wilson totaled 125 tackles, including 26 for a loss, and 10 quarterback sacks. Wilson has the size and quickness to move inside to the “3” technique, but has the speed to play on the edge on early downs.
Despite choosing Earl Thomas with the 14th overall pick, safety was still a position the Seahawks could upgrade in the mid-to-late rounds. With the 133rd overall pick, which the Seahawks obtained for guard Rob Sims, Seattle selected Virginia Tech safety Kam Chancellor, a 6-3, 231-pound thumper that Pete Carroll prefers at the position.
Chancellor compares to Taylor Mays in many ways, and the Seahawks added him without the large financial investment of a first-round pick. Chancellor finished his college career with over 200 tackles and 6 interceptions.
In the sixth-round, Carroll used the 185th overall pick on USC tight end Anthony McCoy, a 6-5, 259-pound tight end who caught 46 passes for 457 yards and three touchdowns. McCoy’s athleticism had many projecting him to on the second day of the three-day draft. McCoy was ruled academically-ineligible for the Emerald Bowl, and tested positive for marijuana, which clearly impacted his draft stock.
Closing out the Seahawks’ 2010 draft class were Arizona State defensive end Dexter Davis (236th overall) and Kent State wide receiver/h-back Jameson Konz (245th overall).
Davis (6-1, 244) started all 50 games for the Sun Devils, posting 136 tackles, including 45 for a loss, along with 31 quarterback sacks and 10 forced fumbles. Davis was first-team All-Pac-10 after his senior year, after previously earning Honorable Mention (2008) and second-team (2007) honors. Davis could be used as a strong-side linebacker, and with his pass-rushing prowess, could be a candidate for the “Elephant” pass-rushing role.
Konz (6-4, 234) played linebacker during his first few years with the Golden Flashes, and was converted to a wide receiver/h-back in 2008. Konz missed most of the ’08 season with an ankle injury, but returned last season to catch 21 passes for 289 yard and a pair of touchdowns. Konz ran a 4.41 during the 40-yard dash, displayed a 46” vertical jump at his pro day.
A project, Konz’s best bet at earning spot on the 53-man roster will be as an impact player on special teams.
Seahawks 2010 Draft Class
1.6 - Russell Okung, OT, Oklahoma State
1.14 - Earl Thomas, S, Texas
2.60 - Golden Tate, WR, Notre Dame
4.111 - Walter Thurmond, CB, Oregon
4.127 - E.J. Wilson, DE, North Carolina
5.133 - Kam Chancellor, S, Virginia Tech
6.185 - Anthony McCoy, TE, USC
7.236 - Dexter Davis, DE, Arizona State
7.245 - Jameson Konz, WR/TE, Kent State
Seahawks 2010 Draft Day Trades
Seattle trades: 104th overall pick (CB, Alterraun Verner) and 175th overall pick (QB, Russell Smith) picks in 2010 NFL Draft
Tennessee trades: RB LenDale White, DT Kevin Vickerson, 111th overall pick (CB, Walter Thurmond), and 185th overall pick (TE, Anthony McCoy) in 2010 NFL Draft
Seattle trades: 139th overall pick (John Conner)
NY Jets trade: RB Leon Washington and 236th overall pick (DE/LB, Dexter Davis) in 2010 NFL Draft
In addition to writing for NorthwestFootball.net, Brian McIntyre blogs daily at Mac's Football Blog. You can follow Brian on Twitter, and if you’d like to e-mail him, you can always do so by clicking here.