The Seahawks can’t possibly be thinking about taking a quarterback with the 12th overall pick, can they? Depends on whether Ryan Tannehill is available.
The way we interpreted Art Thiel’s latest — Seahawks, Tannehill — Oh, Please, No — Seahawks coach Pete Carroll almost seemed to be on a sugar high when he talked Monday over Ryan Tannehill, the Texas A&M quarterback who may or may not be available when Seattle selects 12th overall in Thursday’s first round of the NFL draft.
Carroll didn’t exactly say that the Seahawks would spend the 12th pick on Tannehill, but Carroll didn’t exactly say they wouldn’t, either. Making like the Santa Ana winds, Carroll simply went on fast and furious in a pre-draft press briefing, describing Tannehill’s “fantastic” athletic attributes.
Carroll waxed the same way over Charlie Whitehurst three years ago, had nothing but nice to say about Tarvaris Jackson last season, and Twittered his giddiness over the Matt Flynn signing only a month ago, when the club plucked the ex-Green Bay Packer out of free agency.
Most, but not all, regard Tannehill as the third-best quarterback available Thursday behind Stanford’s Andrew Luck, destined for the Colts, and Baylor’s Robert Griffin III, bound for the Redskins, who combined to drop 132 points on the hapless University of Washington defense last season (Stanford 65-21; Baylor 67-56).
As Thiel pointed out, Mike Holmgren of Cleveland is ogling Tannehill with the fourth overall pick, and the Dolphins, with the eighth, could be similarly smitten. So Carroll’s oration might amount to a fierce gust of meaningless air, and Tannehill might be overrated anyway.
Many draft mocksters rank Boise State’s Kellen Moore ahead of Tannehill. A Prosser, WA., native, Moore holds the all-time record for wins by a starting NCAA quarterback — 50 vs. just three defeats.
Numerous draft mocksters prefer Wisconsin’s Russell Wilson more than Tannehill. Wilson threw for 3,175 yards and 33 touchdowns in 2011, and finished ninth in Heisman Trophy voting. Making Wilson a mystery man is that he stands a tad under 5-foot-11.
Regardless of where Tannehill, Moore and Wilson rank on pre-draft boards, the question is, Why would the Seahawks consider taking a quarterback when they already have Flynn and Jackson in the house?
Carroll answered that himself when the Seahawks awarded career two-game starter Flynn a three-year, $26 million deal: “We are always looking for a quarterback,” he said.
As Thiel opined, it would be smarter to use the 12th pick on a player who can have an impact next season, such as a defensive end or a linebacker, rather than on a quarterback likely to sit — unless the Seahawks got it wrong with Flynn.
How say you?