Even with the potential for Duane Brown to re-sign with the Seattle Seahawks, the organization still has a pressing need for offensive line help. It is a bit more important that Seattle does start to establish the future of their offensive line this season with the increasing likelihood the team has a new starting quarterback in the 2023 season. Offensive line is relatively deep in this year’s class and Seattle could find a starter on both days one and two and a player who might begin their career as a swing tackle early but also has the ceiling of a solid starter within a few years.
Trevor Penning – Northern Iowa – LT – 6’7 – 325
Round 1 Pick 9
With the growing possibility the top three tackles are off the board come Seattle’s pick at nine, if John Schneider dead set on taking a tackle he will have to opt for Trevor Penning. Penning is a small school player who carries a massive mean streak with him is the type of player who could change the entire attitude of the offensive line. Coming from Northern Iowa there are some small school concerns in regard to his lack of high-end competition. He brings little versatility with him to the table as in his 33 starts at UNI — only one game away from tackle.
Quick scouting notes
- Penning’s hand positioning is subpar, as they often end up on the outside of the defender’s shoulders which is going to result in multiple holding penalties. Penning’s hands are not heavy as they do not set defenders back at the first point of contact. They are not overly active throughout the block as he very rarely adjusts them. His elbows do not stay tight enough to his side as at times they bend outwards which causes him to lose play strength and makes it more difficult to anchor down.
- Penning is not overly quick out of stance and is going to struggle against quicker, bendier rushers.
- His feet can get choppy when he is not presented with a defender to block right off the snap as he can take false steps or small stutter steps when looking for a defender to pick up. Penning is slow to pick up late rushers to his outside, leaving the tight end or running back to his left on an island against a delayed backer or slot blitzer.
- Penning does possess good knee bend and rarely gets too upright on the play. He does a good job of staying low prior to the first point of contact and focuses on setting a good, strong base width.
- In the run game Penning brings a mauler mentality but overall is rather inconsistent. In space he looks rather sluggish and uninspiring. He does not have great burst or speed which allows second level defenders to blow right by him. When he does find someone to block at the second level, he struggles to make a difference on the play. He consistently takes poor angles to second level defenders and when he engages with them, they often bounce right off of him, brushing him aside.
- When blocking near the line of scrimmage Penning is better but he still has his struggles. On down blocks his first step is not quick enough and it does not allow him to get across the face of defenders with regularity. If he does, he is not sticky enough to sustain the block when on the move allowing the defender to quickly disengage from him.
- When tasked with a quick seal block on an RPO or run to the inside, Penning does a great job getting his body parallel to the line of scrimmage and using his frame to seal the defender. When Penning is able to sustain his block, he almost always ends up finishing the block and punishing the defender.
Dylan Parham – Memphis – IOL – 6’2 – 311
Round 3 Pick 72
Parham would be a strong interior offensive lineman pick for the Seahawks. There are differing beliefs as to whether he is a guard or center at the next level however he exclusively played both guard and tackle at Memphis, so it is a bit difficult to envision him being a starting center early in his career. Regardless of where he does end up playing his added versatility makes him a bit more valuable as a player. There are some concerns about his size, but it is not something that showed up on tape enough. If he puts on a few more pounds, it is a concern that will be significantly reduced.
Quick scouting notes
- Parham’s biggest asset in the passing game is his hand usage and placement. He is consistently adjusting his hands throughout the play in order to stay in front of the defender. His hands do not pack much of a punch, however he makes up for this with hand placement that is right into the chest plate of the defender. He does a great job of keeping his elbows tight to his side rather than letting his arms get out in front of him.
- Parham possesses a very flexible upper body which does allow for him to get bent back a bit whilst still being able to maintain the block on the play. Parham possesses a good balance in these situations as his center of gravity rarely changes.
- Parham is able to set a consistently strong anchor where he utilizes his ability to get low and gain leverage on the defender. When his anchor does struggle it is more often than not a result of him having to block a stockier, bigger zero through two tec who can get lower and drive him back. Parham’s knee bend is relatively inconsistent which does cause him to get too upright too often.
- In the run game near the line of scrimmage Parham does a great job of using his leverage to help clear players and open up holes. On plays where he is tasked with pulling down the line of scrimmage to seal off an unblocked defender, he does a great job of getting around them and closing them off from making a play on the ball carrier. In space as a puller Parham has a great understanding of both the tempo in which to run and the angles in which he should take on the place.
- Parham does a great job of taking on backers and getting his shoulders square to the line of scrimmage to help seal them off on the play. Parham is extremely sticky at the second level as a result of his ability to seal off as well as incorporating consistent and active hand placement. Parham displays great balance at the second level, very rarely getting knocked off his spot or over by second level defenders.
- In the running game his footwork does not get choppy, nor does he take false steps on the play. On reach or down blocks Parham does struggle to get across the face of the defender, often only getting a hand on their shoulder where he is able to move them a bit but not enough to take them out of the play.
Spencer Burford – UTSA – LT – 6’4 – 304
Round 5 Pick 153
Burford is the kind of late round project tackles teams really enjoy taking. He has athletic bloodlines as two of his cousins, LaAdrian Waddle and Sam Hurd playing in the NFL for a combined 13 seasons. He brings a lot of versatility with him to the table as in 43 starts at UTSA 22 came at tackle and 21 came at left guard. It is not a guarantee he is a year one starting tackle so being able to play tackle and in a pinch guard will be a major asset in building out the depth of the offensive line.
Quick scouting notes
- Burford’s best attribute in the passing game is his hand usage and the area he is able to cover. He has fantastic hands as they are consistently placed right into the chest plate of the defender with his elbows right to his side rather than bending outwards. His hands do not pack a punch, but they are active throughout the play. Burford is very quick out of stance which allows for him to take away his outside shoulder as an option for an edge rusher.
- He does struggle at times to have a consistent anchor as his footwork is a bit sloppy. His feet can get a little choppy out of his shuffle and when being bull rushed or tasked with taking a blocker head on Burford can get back on his heels too often which could be a problem against more physically dominant edge rushers.
- Burford does have a tendency to get too upright and not maintain any type of bend in his knees. This is also something that is going to be a major problem against more physical edge rushers as he loses any type of leverage on these plays. He does display good balance and upper body bend which does help him maintain the block when he is being bent backwards.
- His biggest strength in the run game is his quickness to the second level and his ability to sustain blocks there. When Burford is tasked with just advancing to the second level, he is able to get there in two to three steps and immediately seal off and stick to the second level defender.
- Despite his size he does a great job of getting low and gaining leverage on short yardage running plays and moving defenders out of the way to clear gaps. He does not finish his blocks enough for a player of his size and needs to incorporate a bit more in terms of pancaking blocks and blocking through the whistle.
- Burford is extremely quick as a pulling tackle and can get down the line of scrimmage in time to seal off an unblocked tackle or edge or to get the second level to clear out a defender. As a pulling tackle to the outside, he is not panicky and knows where he needs to be on the play.