There’s been a lot of talk out in the ether about the Seattle Seahawks drafting a running back early in the draft. And I agree they could use some depth at running back.
Specifically, I think the Seahawks need a speed back – a guy who can break the big play and work in as a nice compliment to the hard-nosed running style of Julius Jones and bruiser T.J. Duckett.
Don’t get me wrong, Jones is plenty fast. He ran a 4.51 40-yard dash time at the NFL Scouting Combine when he came out of Notre Dame in 2004. However, I’m thinking of guys like Chris Johnson with Tennessee (4.29), Felix Jones with Dallas (4.44) or Steve Slaton (4.44) with the Houston Texans, guys who can change the complexion of a game with one play by bursting through the line of scrimmage and sprinting past the secondary for a long touchdown run. Also, both of those guys are players who you want to get out in space out in the flat in passing situations as well.
This is why I don’t think Seattle will be interested in Georgia’s Knowshon Moreno with the No. 4 pick. Moreno is a talented back – a high-effort guy who grinds out yards every time he touches the ball. But I do not see the explosiveness of someone like Johnson or Slaton when he touches the ball. He ran a 4.62 at the combine, which puts him in the middle of the pack for running backs. He didn’t fare much better at Georgia’s pro day, running a 4.60 and 4.63, and I don’t think he’s not going to run past anybody when he gets into the secondary in the NFL. I think Moreno is too much like Jones, and the Seahawks could better use someone like Johnson or Slaton.
They might consider someone like Connecticut’s Donald Brown (4.51) or LeSean McCoy (4.50) from Pittsburgh if they’re still around in the second around, or even Boise State’s Ian Johnson (4.46) later in the draft. All of these guys ran in the high 4.4s or low 4.5s. And all are pretty good pass catchers out of the backfield, and would offer a nice change of pace to Jones and Duckett.
I also like Nighthawk2’s suggestion of trying to pry Jerious Norwood (4.33) from the Atlanta falcons. That guy is explosive and would add another dimension to the Hawks’ offense if they could get someone like that. Who are some other running backs you think Seattle should consider? Let me know in the comments section.