And here’s our review of Seattle’s 2011 Draft:
First round: OL James Carpenter, Alabama (25th) — Starter in 26 games, 10 last year, including the Super Bowl
Third round: OL John Moffitt, Wisconsin (75th) — Starter in 15 games in 2011-12 before being traded to Denver. Now out of football.
Fourth round: LB K.J. Wright, Mississippi State (99th) — Almost immediately moved into starting lineup in place of Aaron Curry. Has 40 career starts.
WR Kris Durham, Georgia (107th) — Cut prior to camp in 2012, Durham was a starter last year for the Lions.
Fifth round: CB Richard Sherman, Stanford (154th) — About to become the highest-paid cornerback in the NFL.
S Mark Legree, Appalachian State (156th) — Cut by Seattle before 2011 season, now in the CFL.
Sixth round: CB Byron Maxwell, Clemson (173rd) — Moved into starting lineup last year, where he may stay for a while.
Seventh round: DL Lazarius Levingston, LSU (205th)— Played sparingly in 2011 before being waived prior to 2012 season. Currently out of football.
LB Malcolm Smith, USC (242nd) — Last seen winning Super Bowl MVP trophy.
TOTAL PLAYERS: 9
STILL WITH TEAM: 5
COMMENT: As noted in the Sunday story, this class got some pretty rugged grades initially, with pundits questioning the first two picks, and thinking that the Seahawks reached late.
Turns out there’s still some reason to be skeptical of the first two picks — Moffitt already being done with football and Carpenter’s Seattle future uncertain beyond this season.
But it also turned out that Seattle’s reaches late turned into some franchise-defining picks, with Wright, Sherman and Maxwell all starting in the Super Bowl and Smith earning MVP honors.
Sherman alone makes this class, and if the team can retain the other three long-term, this could be a group that defines the Seahawks for years.