Seahawks Draft: Senior Bowl’s Jim Nagy on C John Michael Schmitz, LB Daiyan Henley

Mar 15, 2023, 8:58 AM
Daiyan Henley WSU Seahawks draft...
WSU LB Daiyan Henley runs drills during practice for the Senior Bowl on Feb. 1, 2023. (AP Photo/Butch Dill)
(AP Photo/Butch Dill)

The Seahawks had their best draft in years last year, and once again, the Senior Bowl was a big part of Seattle’s draft class.

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Last year, six of Seattle’s nine draft picks played in the Senior Bowl, including cornerbacks Tariq Woolen and Coby Bryant, right tackle Abraham Lucas and edge rusher Boye Mafe.

The man who runs the Senior Bowl down in Mobile, Ala. is Jim Nagy, the event’s executive director who was previously a scout for the Seahawks.

As he does every year, Nagy joined Seattle Sports’ Bump and Stacy to discuss the Senior Bowl and players who could be fits for the Seahawks.

During his visit on Tuesday, Nagy highlighted two players who Hawks fans are likely keeping a close eye on when it comes to the draft: Minnesota center John Michael Schmitz and WSU linebacker Daiyan Henley.

Both Schmitz and Henley play key positions of need for Seattle, and Nagy had a lot of great things to say about both of them.

Schmitz, a 2022 All-American, does “everything” well, Nagy said.

“He’s what you’re looking for in a center. He’s played a ton, he can handle it mentally, he’s a good communicator, he’s tough, he’s durable, he’s strong,” Nagy said. ” … He’s stronger than I thought he was watching him in person against really good people. He can really anchor, which I questioned a little bit on tape. So he’s got everything from the neck up, he’s played a ton of football, he’s gonna be able to help the quarterback a ton, you’re gonna be able to take a lot off the quarterback immediately.

“This guy’s ready to play … I think he’s a Day 1 starter and you’ve got a two-contract player that’s going to be a high-level player.”

With Henley, an All-Pac-12 standout for the Cougs, is definiltey someone Nagy could see landing with the Seahawks.

“I think he fits at least what I consider a Seahawks linebacker. Just a run and hit guy,” Nagy said. “You look him, he’s got the build. I mean, the guy is built play to linebacker.”

Henley is a former receiver, and Nagy said he still has room to grow into being an NFL linebacker.

“I think there are some people that question his eyes a little bit. But I think it’s one of the things when he sees it, he can get there because he’s so fast,” he said. “I think the instincts thing will come a little bit the more he plays on that side of the ball, because I saw a big jump from last year to this year.”

Henley was Senior Bowl eligible after his 2021 season at Nevada. At that point, Nagy thought his tape was “just OK,” but that he would still be drafted late.

“He transfers up to WSU and made a huge jump,” Nagy said. “So to me, I’m thinking glass full with the player. I think that stuff’s gonna come along. What you can’t coach is the length. He’s long, he’s explosive, he runs, he hits, he can blitz. I think that guy is going to be a really good starter in league. I’ll be curious to see where Daiyan ends up in the draft. I think he’s a top-100 player. But he’s a little bit all over the board when we talk to teams in terms of where they have him.”

Listen to Nagy’s full interview with Bunp and Stacy at this link or in the player below.

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