BROCK AND SALK
SEC Analyst: Seahawks should pass on QBs at 5; Carter should go No. 1
Throughout the draft process, the two quarterbacks expected to go off the board first are Alabama’s Bryce Young and C.J. Stroud. After that, Florida’s Anthony Richardson and Kentucky’s Will Levis are seen as the next-best quarterbacks in this draft, and those two have been tied to the Seahawks in various mock drafts this offseason.
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But Matt Stinchcomb, a former NFL offensive lineman who is now an analyst for the SEC Network, would pass on both Richardson and Levis if they’re still on the board when the Seahawks are on the clock at No. 5 overall.
“No, I wouldn’t take either one of those guys,” he told Seattle Sports’ Brock and Salk on Wednesday.
Stinchcomb said he’s heard scouts all year think Richardson and Levis are seen as likely to go really early in the 2023 NFL Draft.
“And the guys that cover the conference down here, guys that do games – and we’ve seen some football, played with some good quarterbacks – and we’re going, ‘Seriously? Really?'” Stinchcomb said. “Because at some point in time, the actual performance beyond the measurables and even the intangibles, don’t you eventually have to put out some good looking film more than just a couple of good throws a game if that? So I would say no on both of those (guys). And I think that the comp – the justifier if you will – that people burp out, it’s the Josh Allen-type numbers.”
Coming out of college at Wyoming, Allen, now a superstar with the Buffalo Bills, didn’t complete a lot of passes and wasn’t an efficient passer, Stinchcomb said, but was a big, tall, strong-armed quarterback who could move.
“And look at him now,” he said. “And you’re going, ‘Yep, now name me a couple of others.’ Give me a couple others that are kind of like that. It gives you pause, definitely gives you pause. The Levis kid and Anthony Richardson to a maybe even a greater extent … they didn’t get the consistency year over year at play caller – I get that. I get that at receiver, it wasn’t easy for them … That changes things. Who are you throwing to? What are you working with? Are you comfortable in the system? All those things. But that said, the No. 5 pick? That’s a big swing, and in both of those guys, I think it would be speculative at best and risky probably at worst and maybe even wrongheaded.”
With Richardson, his accuracy is especially noteworthy, but for the wrong reasons.
“Let’s be real, guys, the guy had what, four or five games of less than 50% completion percentage? I mean, there aren’t many games in his career where you’re going, ‘Wow, as a passer, this guy looked really good,'” Stinchcomb said.
Being a media member for the SEC Network, Stinchcomb has gotten into different buildings across the conference and talked to coaches ahead of games about different players. Did Stinchcomb get the feeling talking to Florida coaches that Richardson was a future franchise quarterback?
“No. But that’s not to say that there was any detraction. And so I preface it with … it is different when you’re kind of boots on the ground,” Stinchcomb said.
“They spoke glowingly of Anthony Richardson. But I did not get the impression even remotely that this guy’s anywhere close to a finished product,” he added. “The hard part now – and maybe it always is – you’re walking a tightrope if you’re inside those buildings, right? If you’re the coaches, you don’t want to badmouth your guy, and you definitely want them to go high (in the draft) because it elevates the profile of your program. But then you also kind of want him to stay if he’s got another year of eligibility, which (Richardson), of course, did. So there’s definitely a conflict of interest, even internally for the folks in those buildings.”
Another top draft prospect from the SEC is Georgia defensive tackle Jalen Carter.
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Carter plays a position of need for the Seahawks and has been tied to them in mock drafts.
Where would Stinchcomb take Carter?
“I’d take him (first) overall,” he said.
“I will say that the caveat I put on it – and this is not a Todd McShay-type comment, which to date, remains unsubstantiated – is the effort level, at times, he almost look disinterested,” Stinchcomb added. “You wonder is that because you are just head and shoulders better than everybody else on the field? Is that what it is? So you can flip a switch and in college, you could probably get away with that. But very few could get away with it on Sundays. Maybe. But otherwise, when he wanted to play, I’m hard-pressed to think of a more dominant player at his position.”
Stinchcomb said a good comparison for Carter is former No. 2 overall pick Ndamukong Suh.
“I think Carter is a superior athlete to Suh, but he might be not as powerful. But he’s a superior athlete, especially on third downs,” Stinchcomb said. “You can play him all the way from edge to edge. You could play him on the edge if you wanted to do, and he did, and you wouldn’t be conceding a whole lot. I mean, is he a speed rusher? No, he’s not. But if you face a Sean Payton-type offense, speed rushers aren’t going to get home anyway. The pocket is too shallow. So he’s just he’s a guy that can win inside-out. And if you can get a guy that can win inside-out consistently, that changes things, especially on mone downs, the passing downs.
“To me, Jalen Carter is that guy. I don’t know of another guy that looks like that.”
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