Changing my tune on Sheldon Richardson

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Changing my tune on Sheldon Richardson
Thu Jan 10, 2013 3:31 am
  • Richardson was the first DT from the draft that I looked at. Initially, I wasn't very impressed.

    Since then, I've basically looked at every other DT with a 1st round grade, and while there are some decent DTs out there (I think Kawann Short and Jesse Williams could be good 1-techs, Ezekial Ansah could be a good DE/DT hybrid similar to Jason Jones), overall I've felt this DT class lacked the kind of ultra special player that could save our pass rush in spite of Red Bryant.

    I figured I'd go back and watch Richardson again, just to see if my opinion changed. It did. Unquestionably, Richardson is hands down the most athletic DT in this draft. The difference between him and everyone else was night and day. I think I failed to appreciate it the first time because I had unrealistic expectations that were brought back to earth after viewing the rest.

    And given the rarity of good 3 tech DTs, that will probably make Richardson a top 10 pick. I don't think we'll have any chance to get him, but I no longer doubt him as an NFL prospect. I don't think he'd save our pass rush, but he'd be an upgrade, I have no doubt.
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  • I'm still slightly confused as how we could fix our pass rush.
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  • hawksfan515 wrote:I'm still slightly confused as how we could fix our pass rush.


    Putting more pressure on the quarterback would help. :?:
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  • hawksfan515 wrote:I'm still slightly confused as how we could fix our pass rush.


    Ziggy Ansah. He's a healthier, stronger and faster Jason Jones with a better motor.

    It would be interesting to see some stats on how much the hawks blitz compared to other teams, because it seems we are all frustrated with the lack of blitzing. Sure, it's fine not to blitz that much, but we don't have a really good pass rushing D-line to make up for it. Ansah can be moved around and with Clem out I think it would make sense, but I don't think he'll fall to us, and I can't really see this front office moving up unless there's a standout guy in a position of need (D-line, maybe WR/TE and LB) and I don't think they'll justify it.

    But nobody's going to second guess this FO.
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  • I would sign a free agent DT Henry Melton who had 43 tackles, 6.0 sacks, 2 forces fumbles in a limited role. He basically played Jason Jones role for Chicago.
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  • I don't see Ziggy playing much DT unless he bulks up. He's an outside player. He has incredible leg strength and a frame that CAN bulk up. The question is if he'd need to do it. I think you stick him at DE and he will be a holy terror. No need to use him as a hybrid. If you put Jason Jones at DE full time, he wouldn't do 1/10 of what Ziggy did this year in college (yes, I know... college and the NFL are different). I just don't see the comparo, except that they are both tall and strong. Ziggy reminds me of Bruce Irvin, but stronger. Just a super elite athlete that is wicked fast. I think he'll put up combine numbers like Vernon Davis and teams will see "pure DE" when drafting him.
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  • IBleedBlueAndGreen wrote:
    hawksfan515 wrote:I'm still slightly confused as how we could fix our pass rush.


    Putting more pressure on the quarterback would help. :?:


    I meant what position are we supposed to upgrade now to improve our pass rush, smart aleck. It seems Bryant, Mebane, and Branch are there for run defense, so what option do we have left? Draft a superstar who pass rushes and run defends well?
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  • I would love for Pete to prove me wrong, but I haven't seen anything in 3 years that makes me think I'm wrong on this: if you are going to feature a 3-4/4-3 hybrid front, you need to have a 3-4/4-3 hybrid mentality when it comes to blitzing. You can't just stick three 300+ pound lineman up front and hope to get very far with a base rush.
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Re: Changing my tune on Sheldon Richardson
Thu Jan 10, 2013 11:00 pm
  • SeahawksFanForever wrote:I would sign a free agent DT Henry Melton who had 43 tackles, 6.0 sacks, 2 forces fumbles in a limited role. He basically played Jason Jones role for Chicago.


    He started all 14 games he played. His role was far from limited.

    I'm guessing the Bears tag him if they don't get him signed to a long-term deal.
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Re: Changing my tune on Sheldon Richardson
Fri Jan 11, 2013 12:07 am
  • I've become a big time Richardson fan, too. I love, love, love his motor and toughness....and I also agree we have no chance at landing him :(

    Now, if I remember correctly, there is some character concerns, so there is a chance he falls, somewhat (if only a small chance). Not all the way to our spot, but maybe enough to allow a trade up. He's probably the only player as of now I'd want to actually give up additional picks to get.
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Re: Changing my tune on Sheldon Richardson
Fri Jan 11, 2013 12:22 am
  • hawksfan515 wrote:I'm still slightly confused as how we could fix our pass rush.


    I'd say there's a few ways, IMO.

    A couple that would demand a scheme/philosophy change
    1. Switch out Big Red for a lighter weight, traditional pass-rushing defensive end.
    2. Switch out Alan Branch for a lighter weight, pass-rushing 3-tech defensive tackle.
    3. Blitz a ton more.

    Through the draft
    1. Trade up for an elite, do it all, run-stuffing, pass-rushing 3-tech.
    2. Get lucky and draft a 3-tech later in the draft who develops into an elite player.

    Through Free agency
    Sign a defensive tackle who can do it all.

    Now, any of these ways could possibly "Fix" our pass-rush, but they could very well cause negative affects to our team, too.
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Re: Changing my tune on Sheldon Richardson
Fri Jan 11, 2013 12:50 am
  • SharkHawk wrote:I don't see Ziggy playing much DT unless he bulks up. He's an outside player. He has incredible leg strength and a frame that CAN bulk up. The question is if he'd need to do it. I think you stick him at DE and he will be a holy terror. No need to use him as a hybrid. If you put Jason Jones at DE full time, he wouldn't do 1/10 of what Ziggy did this year in college (yes, I know... college and the NFL are different). I just don't see the comparo, except that they are both tall and strong. Ziggy reminds me of Bruce Irvin, but stronger. Just a super elite athlete that is wicked fast. I think he'll put up combine numbers like Vernon Davis and teams will see "pure DE" when drafting him.


    I was just giving a comparison in the context of the players we have, and though I'll admit I couldn't find any tape of Jones, their physical similarities are freaky, Jones is 6,5 and was 273lbs, with a 4.76 40 time out of college. Ansah is 6,5 270lbs with a 4.74 40 currently listed, though I'd expect him to run in the 4.6's. Of course, they are different players still.

    It's interesting you liken him more to Irvin, I trust your opinion and have enjoyed your updates throughout the season, so much so that I was really hoping Van Noy would end up a Seahawk this year after watching his tape (will have to wait til next year). It's also funny that he pretty much shares a lot of Ziggy's tape too, cause he's everywhere on it.

    I just thought Ansah was more versatile than Bruce; on a few occasions in Ansah's tape, when he's put in the middle (almost always in a 4) he's been double teamed a lot (and I even saw him triple-teamed on at least one play), and this obviously frees up some room for the other guys to get to the QB, or even Ansah himself (but I doubt it's that 'easy' for him in the NFL). He's also better against the run than Irvin, and that's for a guy that's played very little football! If we were to draft him, he'd no doubt get more time than Irvin has done up until now and this is for a guy that's just going to keep developing.

    I've only seen tape of course, and you get to see a lot more of him, but what role would you see him playing on our D, and is he the type of guy you think we should for in the first? (bias aside)
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  • Recon_Hawk wrote:
    hawksfan515 wrote:I'm still slightly confused as how we could fix our pass rush.


    I'd say there's a few ways, IMO.

    A couple that would demand a scheme/philosophy change
    1. Switch out Big Red for a lighter weight, traditional pass-rushing defensive end.
    2. Switch out Alan Branch for a lighter weight, pass-rushing 3-tech defensive tackle.
    3. Blitz a ton more.

    Through the draft
    1. Trade up for an elite, do it all, run-stuffing, pass-rushing 3-tech.
    2. Get lucky and draft a 3-tech later in the draft who develops into an elite player.

    Through Free agency
    Sign a defensive tackle who can do it all.

    Now, any of these ways could possibly "Fix" our pass-rush, but they could very well cause negative affects to our team, too.


    Thanks Recon, that's what I meant. That clears up everything a little.
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  • SomersetHawk wrote:
    SharkHawk wrote:I don't see Ziggy playing much DT unless he bulks up. He's an outside player. He has incredible leg strength and a frame that CAN bulk up. The question is if he'd need to do it. I think you stick him at DE and he will be a holy terror. No need to use him as a hybrid. If you put Jason Jones at DE full time, he wouldn't do 1/10 of what Ziggy did this year in college (yes, I know... college and the NFL are different). I just don't see the comparo, except that they are both tall and strong. Ziggy reminds me of Bruce Irvin, but stronger. Just a super elite athlete that is wicked fast. I think he'll put up combine numbers like Vernon Davis and teams will see "pure DE" when drafting him.


    I was just giving a comparison in the context of the players we have, and though I'll admit I couldn't find any tape of Jones, their physical similarities are freaky, Jones is 6,5 and was 273lbs, with a 4.76 40 time out of college. Ansah is 6,5 270lbs with a 4.74 40 currently listed, though I'd expect him to run in the 4.6's. Of course, they are different players still.

    It's interesting you liken him more to Irvin, I trust your opinion and have enjoyed your updates throughout the season, so much so that I was really hoping Van Noy would end up a Seahawk this year after watching his tape (will have to wait til next year). It's also funny that he pretty much shares a lot of Ziggy's tape too, cause he's everywhere on it.

    I just thought Ansah was more versatile than Bruce; on a few occasions in Ansah's tape, when he's put in the middle (almost always in a 4) he's been double teamed a lot (and I even saw him triple-teamed on at least one play), and this obviously frees up some room for the other guys to get to the QB, or even Ansah himself (but I doubt it's that 'easy' for him in the NFL). He's also better against the run than Irvin, and that's for a guy that's played very little football! If we were to draft him, he'd no doubt get more time than Irvin has done up until now and this is for a guy that's just going to keep developing.

    I've only seen tape of course, and you get to see a lot more of him, but what role would you see him playing on our D, and is he the type of guy you think we should for in the first? (bias aside)


    I can totally see what you're saying. I think Ziggy has what it takes to play anywhere. I think it is kind of like Kam in that you COULD play him at LBer and it was discussed, but why do it? He's a great safety. I think Ziggy will be so impressive at DE, that they will stick him there as a 4 down player. He can block kicks on 4th. I think he can hold the run, he can create pressure with a 2 man front. It's amazing. So yeah...he could play anywhere, but teams seem to like guys that specialize in a way.

    The difference physically is that Ziggy is built like a TE with skinny (but muscular) track runners legs. Jones has legs like tree trunks, which makes him probably a bit better inside. I think Ziggy has the workrate and strength to hold his own with any lineman in the NFL personally. He owned everybody he played in college, including some really excellent linemen at Utah and Notre Dame.

    I can see your point and that his value is that he can come in and play. He's raw, which means you can move him around.

    His 40 time is impressive, but his 200 is 21 seconds. I've seen the dude run track. It's messed up. It's like watching Usain Bolt run in Chris Clemons body. Yeah, seriously. I watched the guy run the 200 and was like "Man... that's messed UP. He's a freaking freight train." I saw him play special teams last year and was like "YIKES!!!! THE guy runs like a gunner and is built exactly like Jevon Kearse or Bruce Smith!!!!!!". I am so hopeful that he does well at the combine and kicks butt in the NFL. It would be a wonderful story.

    I think Van Noy could be a very realistic target for us next year, because I know personally and for a fact that Pete knows him VERY VERY well and watches him. He knows what Kyle's up to, and I think the Hawks will keep radio silent on Van Noy next draft, just like they did on Russell in this past draft.

    Can you imagine Van Noy and Kam both rotating between OLB and Safety giving different looks and one of them blitzing off the edge? It would be lethal. I think the reason they never gave Kam looks at LB this year, is because they realized after camps they didn't have anybody that could slide into safety effectively. There was talk of Winston Guy doing it, but then he fell out of favor over his drug test and practicing, and so I think they'll look at it again. Basically you have 2 LBers out there that are also DB's, but you disguise which is which through who you decide to blitz. That is how the "Lobo" (which as I've said before was designed for Urlacher) was used. BYU does that same thing with Van Noy now and calls him the "Cougar" (for obvious reasons). But he's doing exactly what Urlacher did in college. He has the option (basically he's like a "read/option" defender) that can make a call and blitz, or make a call and switch and cover, or make a call and play as an OLB. It's really a cool system in college, and I think Pete knows it pretty well due to his connections (he's pretty connected to the BYU guys through Sarkisian, and has been around the coaches and done clinics together and such). I think he'd love to roll out the weird 3-3-5 that Patterson (now at TCU) Rocky Long (now at SDSU) and Bronco Mendenhall (at BYU, came from New Mexico with Urlacher) have created and how they use that guy. Kam could be that guy. A player like Van Noy could be that guy. Earl could be that guy. In fact.... all three could, and then THEY are directing what is happening and the OFFENSE has to react. It isn't the other way around.

    That is why Urlacher was such a unique talent coming out of college and I think Van Noy is too. I think Ansah is unique due to his size, speed, strength, and learning curve. He's picked up more football in a season and a half than most defensive linemen do in their lives. The reason for the Bruce comparison was sheerly because he has WR speed, yet is a big guy. Bruce isn't huge... but he's a bit bigger than about every WR that's ever lived. :)
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  • SharkHawk wrote:
    I can totally see what you're saying. I think Ziggy has what it takes to play anywhere. I think it is kind of like Kam in that you COULD play him at LBer and it was discussed, but why do it? He's a great safety. I think Ziggy will be so impressive at DE, that they will stick him there as a 4 down player. He can block kicks on 4th. I think he can hold the run, he can create pressure with a 2 man front. It's amazing. So yeah...he could play anywhere, but teams seem to like guys that specialize in a way.

    The difference physically is that Ziggy is built like a TE with skinny (but muscular) track runners legs. Jones has legs like tree trunks, which makes him probably a bit better inside. I think Ziggy has the workrate and strength to hold his own with any lineman in the NFL personally. He owned everybody he played in college, including some really excellent linemen at Utah and Notre Dame.

    I can see your point and that his value is that he can come in and play. He's raw, which means you can move him around.

    His 40 time is impressive, but his 200 is 21 seconds. I've seen the dude run track. It's messed up. It's like watching Usain Bolt run in Chris Clemons body. Yeah, seriously. I watched the guy run the 200 and was like "Man... that's messed UP. He's a freaking freight train." I saw him play special teams last year and was like "YIKES!!!! THE guy runs like a gunner and is built exactly like Jevon Kearse or Bruce Smith!!!!!!". I am so hopeful that he does well at the combine and kicks butt in the NFL. It would be a wonderful story.

    I think Van Noy could be a very realistic target for us next year, because I know personally and for a fact that Pete knows him VERY VERY well and watches him. He knows what Kyle's up to, and I think the Hawks will keep radio silent on Van Noy next draft, just like they did on Russell in this past draft.

    Can you imagine Van Noy and Kam both rotating between OLB and Safety giving different looks and one of them blitzing off the edge? It would be lethal. I think the reason they never gave Kam looks at LB this year, is because they realized after camps they didn't have anybody that could slide into safety effectively. There was talk of Winston Guy doing it, but then he fell out of favor over his drug test and practicing, and so I think they'll look at it again. Basically you have 2 LBers out there that are also DB's, but you disguise which is which through who you decide to blitz. That is how the "Lobo" (which as I've said before was designed for Urlacher) was used. BYU does that same thing with Van Noy now and calls him the "Cougar" (for obvious reasons). But he's doing exactly what Urlacher did in college. He has the option (basically he's like a "read/option" defender) that can make a call and blitz, or make a call and switch and cover, or make a call and play as an OLB. It's really a cool system in college, and I think Pete knows it pretty well due to his connections (he's pretty connected to the BYU guys through Sarkisian, and has been around the coaches and done clinics together and such). I think he'd love to roll out the weird 3-3-5 that Patterson (now at TCU) Rocky Long (now at SDSU) and Bronco Mendenhall (at BYU, came from New Mexico with Urlacher) have created and how they use that guy. Kam could be that guy. A player like Van Noy could be that guy. Earl could be that guy. In fact.... all three could, and then THEY are directing what is happening and the OFFENSE has to react. It isn't the other way around.

    That is why Urlacher was such a unique talent coming out of college and I think Van Noy is too. I think Ansah is unique due to his size, speed, strength, and learning curve. He's picked up more football in a season and a half than most defensive linemen do in their lives. The reason for the Bruce comparison was sheerly because he has WR speed, yet is a big guy. Bruce isn't huge... but he's a bit bigger than about every WR that's ever lived. :)


    Thanks for that! I recall you saying about Ziggy's 200, that must have been something to behold! I'd be delighted if we managed to pick this guy up.

    And it's interesting to hear what you say about Carrol and Van Noy. I almost think he's the player Carrol wants Kam to be (in terms of his vision of Kam as a potential LB). I love Kam, but Van Noy is a tad bigger, quicker and looks to be incredibly football smart.
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  • I think we are going to be too far down in the draft to even trade up for Sheldon Richardson. I think Richardson is similar to last Eagles 1st round (DT) Fletcher Cox. Due to the lack of top-tier talent in the 1st round this year, I think Richardson will be drafted higher than Cox was at #12.
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Re: Changing my tune on Sheldon Richardson
Sat Jan 12, 2013 10:33 am
  • Teams are hurting in their run game defense, so I am sure a really solid DT is going to have a higher draft slot this year than in some years. You're seeing the same thing with Star Lutuleilei. Some years he'd be a 20th pick, this year they talk about him like he could be #1 overall.

    The Seahawks drafted Cortez and ended up with a monster defense just built around that one hitch pin player. Teams have tried for years to hit on a guy like that. Ngata has been that type of player for a lot of the time and you see the results with the Ravens D. Teams are smart to draft a monster DT when they can. But often they end up busting. Why is that? It seems that they bust a lot, and it is probably equal to other positions as far as %'s go, but maybe it is just because when a DT goes THAT high in a draft you suspect that they should be very very special or not have been drafted that high I guess.
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  • Bummer that he won't be around when we pick.
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