After releasing Grant Wistrom earlier this spring, adding depth at defensive end was a priority for the Seahaks coming into the draft. The team has now addressed that with the pick of Baraka Atkins, defensive end from Miami (FL), with its first pick of the 4th round.
A quick perusal of NFL.com's bio of Atkins reveals him to be a typical Ruskell character guy:
Atkins, whose father is the mayor of the city of Sarasota, is an intelligent athlete. He graduated in 2005 with a degree in Business Management and pursued a second degree in Marketing during his 2006 season.In terms of measurables, he's 6-foot-4 and 278 pounds. For comparison purposes, he's roughly the same size as Patrick Kerney (6-5, 273) and Bryce Fisher (6-3, 272) and quite a bit bigger than Darryl Tapp (6-1, 265), whom the Seahawks selected in the second round last year.
At first blush, much like the pick of Josh Wilson, I'm pretty happy they got a different kind of guy to fit in with that line. He's played both tackle and end in his career, so he's got some versatility. There's some question as to what his true upside is, given that he's never had a chance to really focus on one position.
Here's a quick look at him from Scott Wright's Draft Countdown:
Strengths: Has good size and bulk with a nice frame...Stout against the run...Good strength and power...Agile and quick off the snap...Is versatile with experience at multiple positions...Gets excellent penetration...Plays with good leverage and balance...He was durable...Has a lot of experience...Solid production...Still has some potential.
Weaknesses: Classic 'tweener who's not big enough to play inside yet doesn't have the ideal speed or athleticism needed for the outside...Was never really able to focus on mastering a single position...Has an inconsistent motor...Not a great pass rusher or sack artist...Questionable work ethic...Was actually benched for a while in '06.
With their second pick, the Seahawks selected offensive lineman -- or is that defensive lineman? -- Mansfield Wrotto from Georgia Tech. The 6-foot-3, 316-pound Wrotto was a three-year starter on the defensive line before switching to the offensive line this year.
It'll be interesting to see where the Seahawks project him. Could he be the run-stuffing defensive tackle they've been looking for? He's certainly got the size, and NFL.com says he could pretty easily add another 10 pounds to his frame. Could he be an eventual starter on the offensive line? There's some thought that this guy could have been a first-day talent had he been on the o-line longer than just one season in college. Interesting pick that has a significant amount of upside potential.
Here's a quick look at him from Rivals.com:
The good: Mansfield started 46 games in career, but his first 32 were along the defensive line. He is a thick, wide-bodied lineman who flashes the power and agility to be one of the most intriguing prospects in this draft class. As a senior, he started at right tackle and displayed promise and the physical tools to develop further. He has all the physical skills to develop into an NFL starter — very long-armed and long-legged with the bubble-butt scouts want in a road-grader for along the front line. He comes off the snap with some pop and leverage.That's it for now, as I'm off to church. I'll check back in later this afternoon with more on the Seahawks' final picks and Darrell Jackson. See you then.
The bad: He is still very raw in his technique and needs to develop better hand use and footwork when it comes to handling outside speed and inside counter moves. In pass protection, he is still developing in all areas from setup, hand use, footwork and recognition skills. He can be slow to setup at times that leaves him exposed and though he has powerful hands, he is only adequate to recover. His footwork needs work and is probably the most critical area to improve before he can compete for playing time.
Outlook: Wrotto probably goes in the top 125 prospects and would be a good early day pick with the Ravens, Bengals and Bills interested. If the light goes off here, he could challenge any prospect at this position within a few seasons. Excellent second-day addition with starting talent and probably sooner than most think.