#35 overall - Malik McDowell. The only real bust on this list. I know some here have a problem keeping perspective about it, but minor character issues in college are simply not a strong predictor of having a career ending injury before playing an NFL snap. We've had success bringing in characters before (Lynch, Clark). Bad things happen sometimes and it's an error to try to assign blame to what is just randomness.
Generally love all your posts, first time I've really disagreed with you on something. The Seahawks have sorted out what appears to some to be "randomness" in those situations and learned from it.
Schneider has said that they changed their drafting approach after McDowell, to observe "minimums" in certain areas. Comparing these three, McDowell, Clark, Lynch is total apples and oranges. I recall sticking up vehemently for Clark when the PC crowd here was ready to convict him on questionable DV allegations that clearly involved a b!@ch. Also, with Clark, in college, there were NEVER any questions about his practice work ethic, commitment to the team, and interactions as a teammate. Hell, Clark b!@ch or sucker punched Germain Ifedi I think it was, as a Seahawk, and I'm sure that Ifedi totally deserved it and it was a net positive for the TEAM. Lynch was a different beast altogether, but Pete had enough data to make the bet, and Lynch had been a solid pro in his time with Buffalo.
McDowell was dumb as a box of rocks, entitled, and simply not a good candidate for the demands of the NFL, where players actually need to be *smart*. I don't recall that JS ever elaborated on the specific criteria changes the Hawks made based on the McDowell saga, but I'd bet it involved avoiding players below minimum "smarts" who also have an evident Cluster B personality disorder, NPD, BPD, along with a degree of sociopathy above a certain level. They also learned from the Percy Harvin fiasco; as I've noted before, Harvin's complete history, and his behavior as a Seahawk checks a whole lot of boxes for BPD with a high degree of sociopathy.
Frank Clark: Smart, strong work ethic, high motor, good teammate, committed to the team. Seahawks parsed through his history, got it right, and made a smart bet. I think they used the overall learning from the Harvin experience to realize that the Cluster B sociopath involved in the Clark situation was NOT Clark himself, but rather his girlfriend at the time.
Honestly, it's hard to tell sometimes, which person in a messed-up situation is the (lmore) CRAZY one, when there are accusations and counter-accusations. Percy Harvin, or Golden Tate? Harvin. Brad, or Angelina? Angelina. Greg Hardy, or his gold-digger GF? BOTH!! Steve McNair, or his murderer, Sahel "Jenni" Kazemi? Kazemi. The Seahawks have gotten better at figuring this stuff out up front, but they missed on McDowell, and learned from the experience.
In general, I love the Seahawks overall draft process, and the way they have learned to factor character (e.g., ability to overcome setbacks, family influences, etc.) into their process. Tyler Lockett? YEAH BABY!! DK Metcalf? YEAH BABY!! again. I think we'll also be saying YEAH BABY!! in a couple years to Jordyn Brooks, LJ Collier, Darrell Taylor, Damien Lewis, Colby Parkinson, and several more, with a special YEAH BABY!! for Will Dissly, by then with two mostly-healthy seasons behind him. 2020 in hindsight will be looked at as a terrific draft, for the top 4, and maybe a couple more.