Brock Huard’s 2018 NFL Draft prospect profiles

Apr 25, 2018, 8:55 PM | Updated: 11:11 pm
seahawks, sony michel...
Georgia RB Sony Michel averaged 7.9 YPC last season. Could he be the Seahawks' pick? (AP)

Each day, Brock Huard is profiling a different draft prospect that he considers an early-round possibility for the Seahawks. His draft previews have spanned several position groups and are a great primer for football fans who will be tuning into Day 1 of the 2018 NFL Draft, which kicks off Thursday, April 26 at AT&T Stadium. Here are a few players who could catch the Seahawks’ attention at No. 18:

Florida State S Derwin James

Position: S
Height/weight: 6-2, 215
Class: R-So.
Hometown: Haines City, FL

Brock’s take: “He reminds me of Shawn Springs. I played with Shawn Springs for a couple years, and I remember looking at him at times like, ‘Man, you put together a football player in his perfect form, I want those shoulders, I want that waist, I want that unbelievable athleticism, I want that low body fat, I want that twitch, I want that explosion.’ All of it is Derwin James… Jimbo [Fisher] loved him, his D-coordinator loved him, his teammates loved him. That is the kind of high character guy that you want in your building.” FULL PROFILE.

Boise State LB Leighton Vander Esch

Position: LB
Height/weight: 6-4/256
Class: r-Jr.
Hometown: Riggins, ID

Brock’s take: ““Another linebacker that you are more than likely going to see drafted in the first round. This is the best linebacker draft I can remember in a long time, and Leighton Vander Esch is one unique kind of talent. He’s 6-4, 256, and he jumped nearly 40 inches at the combine. That was second amongst all outside linebackers. He blew it up.” FULL PROFILE.

Georgia RB Nick Chubb

Position: RB
Height/weight: 5-11/227
Class: Senior
Hometown: Cedartown, Ga.

Brock’s take: “Like Drago, whatever he hits, he destroys.”

That’s right – Huard compares Chubb’s running style to the hitting power of the villain in Rocky IV. And with good reason.

“He’s a powerful, strong guy. Oklahoma wanted no part of tackling he and Sony Michel (in the Rose Bowl). Here’s a little difference with Nick Chubb. He is a bowling ball. He’s 228 pounds that ran 4.52 (40-yard dash), actually a little tick faster than Sony Michel. He also jumped 38 ½ inches (in the vertical).” FULL PROFILE.

Alabama LB Rashaan Evans

Position: LB
Height/weight: 6-3/232
Class: Senior
Hometown: Auburn, Ala.

Brock’s take: “I like this dude a lot, man. He’s the one defensive player outside of (North Carolina State defensive end) Bradley Chubb this year where I’m constantly rewinding the tape (and saying) ‘Man, look at this guy.’ Watch this guy jolt people – offensive linemen, guards, tight ends, running backs. Unlike anybody else other than Bradley Chubb on tape this season. That’s Rashaan Evans.” FULL PROFILE.

Washington DT Vita Vea

Position: DL
Height/weight: 6-4, 347
Class: Jr.
Hometown: Milpitas, CA

Brock’s take: “I’ll answer it right away: I’m taking Vita Vea at 18. I think he is a cornerstone kind of guy. I think he plays in this league a long time. I think his talents are just incredibly unique. And unlike with many of these prospects, I think [Seattle fans] listening right now know Vita Vea inside and out. You’ve watched him grow and develop from a high school running back/D-lineman kind of quasi-weird unbelievable athlete into one of the most dominant forces in all of college football.” FULL PROFILE.

UTEP G Will Hernandez

Position: G
Height/weight: 6-2, 348
Class: Sr.
Hometown: Las Vegas, NV

Brock’s take: “This is your quintessential guard: 6-2, 348, and one powerful, mean and angry football player. I first noticed him on a Friday night game… and UTEP was awful. Arguably the worst program in college football. 0-12 last year, fired their coach… and the only thing [the analysts] could do was highlight one football player that night. And that football player was Will Hernandez, who was an absolute animal. And once your eyes actually watch a guard play, you watch him pile drive and annihilate people.” FULL PROFILE.

Georgia RB Sony Michel

Position: RB
Height/weight: 5-11, 220
Class: Sr.
Hometown: Plantation, FL

Brock’s take: “(Michel) exploded in 2017, averaging 7.9 yards per rush. That doubles what the Seahawks run game did a year ago per rush. Obviously it’s a very different level and a very different game, and Georgia’s good… but Sony Michel is the flash, man, he is lightning when it comes to that combination.” FULL PROFILE.

UTSA DE Marcus Davenport

Position: DE
Height/weight: 6-6, 264
Class: Sr.
Hometown: San Antonio, TX

Brock’s take: “He is one gifted athlete. And in 2013, ‘14, ‘15, or ‘16, quite honestly, I think all these draftniks would say, ‘This is a Seahawk kind of guy.’ This is the unique talent that Pete Carroll and John Schneider so covet. I’m talking 6-feet-6 at the combine, nearly 34-inch arms, 265 pounds and number one when it came to running the 40-yard dash, at 4.58. He reminds me an awful lot of a guy I did see in college, and that was a defensive end out of BYU [named] Ziggy Ansah, who has become a franchise-level pass rusher for Detroit.” FULL PROFILE.

Stanford S Justin Reid

Position: S
Height/weight: 6-1, 204
Class: Jr.
Hometown: Prairieville, LA

Brock’s take: “I know the question that’s going to come, because in Seattle it’s a little different: well, is he a free safety and he’s Earl Thomas’ replacement, or is a strong safety and is he Kam Chancellor’s replacement? Because those two positions in Seattle are so clearly defined and have been for almost a decade by two of the very best in the game who bring different skillsets. Well, this kid is in between; he’s a little bit of both of them. He runs really well. In fact, he had the second-fastest 40 time among the safeties at the combine and he also jumps very well, 36-inch vertical, so he’s an explosive kid.” FULL PROFILE.

Boston College DE Harold Landry

Position: DE
Height/weight: 6-3, 252
Class: Sr.
Hometown: Spring Lake, NC

Brock’s take: “He led the country in sacks with 16.5. He’s 6-3, 250 pounds. He vertical (jumped) 36 inches at the combine; that was third-best among all the D-linemen. He was number one at the combine when it came to his 20-yard shuttle, he was number two when it came to that three-cone drill, he was number three when it came to that vertical, and by the way, that 4.64 blazing time was the third-fastest of any D-lineman in this draft.” FULL PROFILE.

Notre Dame OT Mike McGlinchey

Position: OT
Height/weight: 6-8, 315
Class: Sr.
Hometown: Philadelphia, PA

Brock’s take: “(McGlinchey) has spent the better part of his career next to a transcendent offensive guard (Quenton Nelson). Nelson is going to be a top-10 pick in this draft; he is an unbelievable talent. And those two changed Notre Dame. Those two elevated their program immensely. Those two allowed Notre Dame football to have a ton of success with horrific quarterback play, even this season.” FULL PROFILE.

LSU RB Derrius Guice

Position: RB
Height/weight: 5-10, 212
Class: Jr.
Hometown: Baton Rouge, LA

Brock’s take: “He is the guy that when you have asked, ‘OK, give me Marshawn Lynch, give me the guy you don’t want to tackle, give me the guy that is just a monster,’ he is the name that comes to mind in this draft class with a very deep group of guys,” Huard said. “Saquon Barkley is going to be a top five pick; he’s off the board (by the Seahawks’ No. 18 pick). The next guy on most people’s list is Derrius Guice. For those texters who said the biggest need is still running back, well, Derrius Guice is the guy who has unbelievable potential. He’s also to me the riskiest back in this draft.” FULL PROFILE.

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Brock Huard’s 2018 NFL Draft prospect profiles