- Mike Sando, NFL Insider
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Clare Farnsworth of seahawks.com passes along thoughts from coach Pete Carroll regarding various quarterback issues. Carroll on what he wants from a quarterback: "Yeah, we’re always looking for a guy that can manage the offense, really. We’ve always said, even way back with Heisman Trophy winners [at USC], we were never structuring the offense to be carried by one guy. We always wanted to have a guy that would be very understanding of the system and of the people and the assets around him that could mix and move the football about. With that, we’ve always liked a quarterback that could move. We’ve always liked the ability to move because it fits with our running game and the style of complementary throwing game that we like to match up with it. So the movement quarterback is -- we don’t need to have a guy that’s a pure runner, we’re not talking about that -- but a guy that has the ability to move and get out of the pocket and give us the variety of sets where we want to get that quarterback to slow down the pass rush and stuff. That’s always been part of it. That hasn’t always been what we’ve had, but that’s always been something that we’ve looked for in the ideal." That makes it even more difficult to envision the Seahawks selecting slow-footed quarterback Ryan Mallett in the first round of this draft.
Dave Wyman of 710ESPN Seattle thinks the Seahawks are most likely to draft for their lines. Wyman: "Offensive and defensive line. The more I get into it the more I realize, when I'm at the games more and more with my binoculars I'm focused on the line. That's where I'm watching, that's where it all happens down inside ... if you ask me what would characterize a good draft, I'd say if you got a couple of guys, maybe three or four on the offensive and defensive side that are big guys that are physical."
Also from Farnsworth: A season-ticket holder will announce the team's fourth-round draft choice after winning a contest.
Danny O'Neil of the Seattle Times sends cornerback Jimmy Smith to the Seahawks at No. 25 in his mock draft.
Eric D. Williams of the Tacoma News Tribune provides a general draft overview for Seattle. The team wants to get younger.
Dave Boling of the Tacoma News Tribune says the Seahawks want to trade down, a strategy that has not always worked well for the team.
Kent Somers of the Arizona Republic looks at trade possibilities for the Cardinals with the fifth overall choice, including one possibility with Houston. Somers: "In 2003, the team traded the sixth overall pick to move down to the 17th and 18th. The Cardinals had their eyes on defensive end Jerome McDougle from Miami. The Eagles, however, traded up to take McDougle at No. 15. The Cardinals ended up taking receiver Bryant Johnson and defensive end Calvin Pace, who each had serviceable seasons. If the Cardinals had kept the sixth pick, they could have taken Arizona State's Terrell Suggs, who has become an elite pass rusher for the Ravens."
Also from Somers: The Cardinals would have a hard time passing on Von Miller, Patrick Peterson or A.J. Green if any were available to them at No. 5.
Darren Urban of azcardinals.com says the team would prefer to get immediate contributions from any player it selects fifth overall. Coach Ken Whisenhunt on taking a quarterback that early: "There is not a cut and dried way to say, this guy can do it or this guy can’t. I think we have spent a lot of time with these guys this year, looked at a lot of tape, that’s part of the assessment. Taking a player at the fifth pick, you’d like a guy to make an immediate impact and we need it after going 5-11 last year. But you also have to look at the other areas where you could address it because we have also said that’s an area that is important to address this offseason. You have to weigh those things."
Also from Urban: Would the Cardinals rather have pass-rush help or coverage help?
Jim Thomas of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch sends defensive tackle Corey Liuget to the Rams at No. 14 in his mock draft. Thomas: "With Julio Jones long gone, Liuget provides much-needed interior help."
Bernie Miklasz of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch offers thoughts on the draft, including these on the Rams: "The Rams need a No. 1 receiver, a potential game-breaker, a guy who can connect with Bradford to scorch defenses in the Josh McDaniels offense. If Alabama's Julio Jones inexplicably drops to the Rams' spot at No. 14, he'd be the obvious pick. And if the Rams passed on Jones, then owner Stan Kroenke might as well hire George Boone to run next year's draft. If Jones is gone by No. 14, the pragmatic Spags figures to go for the defensive lineman he likes best. The Rams need to reinforce the D-line, and several attractive options should be available, including Illinois defensive tackle Corey Liuget and Purdue defensive end Ryan Kerrigan. Or perhaps North Carolina pass rusher Robert Quinn will slip through. The sudden and unexpected availability of Nebraska cornerback Prince Amukamara would undoubtedly prompt the Rams to reconsider."
Nick Wagoner of stlouisrams.com says there's continuity in St. Louis now that Steve Spagnuolo and Billy Devaney have been working together for a few years.
Tony Softli of 101ESPN St. Louis says Stan Kroenke is putting his mark on the Rams.
Also from Wagoner: Julio Jones is his choice for the Rams at No. 14.
Matt Maiocco of CSNBayArea.com sends cornerback Prince Amukamara to the 49ers at No. 7 in his mock draft. Maiocco: "After waiting to hear trade offers for the pick, the 49ers add a player who should make an impact even with the shortened offseason."
Eric Branch of the Santa Rosa Press-Democrat says the 49ers would be comfortable taking a quarterback with a background in a spread offense.
Also from Branch: Trent Baalke's history with Bill Parcells offers clues on which players the 49ers might draft. He points to Ryan Kerrigan, Ryan Williams, Casey Matthews, Cedric Thornton and Ricardo Lockette as players to watch.
Tim Kawakami of the San Jose Mercury News thinks the 49ers will emerge from the 2011 draft with Andy Dalton or Christian Ponder. Kawakami: "Their first two picks could turn out to be (Patrick) Peterson and Ponder (if they keep No. 7); or, if they trade down, the top two 49ers picks could possibly be Nebraska cornerback Prince Amukamara and Ponder. Both are potential winning scenarios for the 49ers, I think, and would take some strategizing. It would take a plan. They couldn't do this off-the-cuff. And what I'm hearing from people talking to 49ers scouts and executives is that the talent-evaluation process is as unified and clear-minded as anyone there can remember."
David White of the San Francisco Chronicle thinks the 49ers will draft for defense early.
Kevin Lynch of Niner Insider says the 49ers would be a logical trading partner for Washington if the Redskins indeed sought to trade up.
Matt Barrows of the Sacramento Bee says the 49ers have committed $135 million in guaranteed money to their last 15 first-round draft choices.