Monday cyber surfing: Irvin ‘arguably hottest player in the whole draft’

Good morning. Here’s what’s “out there” about the Seahawks for today, April 30:

Len Pasquarelli at Pro Sports Xchange supports what general manager John Schneider had to say about the Seahawks’ surprising selection of Bruce Irvin with the 15th  pick in the first round – that other teams also were hot for the pass rusher from West Virginia: “ ‘He was,’ the general manager from one of those teams told The Sports Xchange late Friday night, ‘arguably the hottest player in the whole draft the past week.’ That sentiment was shared by several personnel chiefs on Friday and Saturday. There have been suggestions that Irvin, whose tale of personal redemption has become well-known over the last few days, might have even been available to the Seahawks in the second round. But given the interest from other franchises, as confirmed by The Sports Xchange, that is highly unlikely. Among the several teams that either planned to select Irvin or had him on a “short list” of first-round candidates for consideration: the New York Jets (No. 16), Chicago (19th), Green Bay (28th) and San Francisco (No. 30).”

Dave Boling at the News Tribune takes a closer look at Irvin’s troubled past through the eyes of his mother: “The calls in the night were the worst. Bessie Lee knew they brought bad news about her son, Bruce Irvin; she just never knew how bad. They also brought tears, and the weight of it all forced her to her knees. Ask her about those times, and Bessie Lee taps her heart, eyes growing moist. ‘You wear out your knees asking God to take care of him,’ Lee said of those painful moments when she feared for his life. ‘When the call comes through, it’s, ‘Is he shot?’ Sometimes your mind runs deeper than jail. I have watched other people’s kids get shot, even die. You worry about those things. Oh, my Lord, is this call for my child?’ ”

Gil Brant at NFL.com offers his Top 10 undrafted players, and the list includes Washington wide receiver Jermaine Kearse, who signed as a free agent with the Seahawks: “Kearse has been a starter since his freshman year in 2008. His best season came in 2010, when he had 1,005 receiving yards and 12 touchdowns. His production tailed off, however, in 2011 (699 yards, seven touchdowns). He brings strong leadership qualities. One thing he has to work on is concentrating better on making the catch – he has had some drops – but has playmaking ability once he has the ball.”

Mike Sando at ESPN.com offers his initial thoughts on the Seahawks’ 2012 draft class: “The Seahawks, after getting much bigger in their first two seasons under Pete Carroll, added welcome speed to their roster in this draft. Pass-rusher Bruce Irvin, chosen 15th overall, had the fastest 3-cone time for any player at the NFL scouting combine. ‘If you look at it, our slowest guy was an offensive lineman at 4.85 (seconds in the 40-yard dash),’ Carroll said. ‘There’s great speed in this draft for us, and that’s really exciting across the board, and it’s going to help our special teams enormously.’ ”

Sando also passes along this video report that includes praise for the selection of running back Robert Turbin from Eric Allen, the former cornerback for the Eagles who now an analyst for ESPN.

Steve Kelley at the Seattle Times would have liked to see the Seahawks draft a wide receiver: “I wish the Seahawks had more seriously addressed their passing game in this draft, wish they had picked at least one wide receiver. Last season, NFL scoreboards spun like dials on a slot machine. The Green Bay Packers had the worst defense in the league. They lost once. The New England Patriots were the second-worst defense. They went to the Super Bowl.”

John Czarnecki at FoxSports.com gave the Seahawks a grade of B for this past weekend’s NFL Draft: “Coach Pete Carroll is hoping Wisconsin quarterback Russell Wilson (75th overall pick) develops into Drew Brees. The knock on Wilson is his height; he’s only 5-foot-10, a tad shorter than the 6-foot Brees. But he can throw a deep ball, is very athletic and off-the-charts in the locker room. He can be a great leader. Obviously, he’s going to push Tarvaris Jackson because the Seahawks have put a lot of money in ex-Green Bay quarterback Matt Flynn’s pocket. … Their entire draft was one shocker after another. In the first round, they took West Virginia’s Bruce Irvin, who was off a lot of boards because of his arrest last month on a vandalism charge. But Irvin does have tons of ability and, like Carroll said, might be the best pass rusher in this draft. … Utah State linebacker Bobby Wagner could fill the void of leading tackler David Hawthorne. Wagner’s college teammate, running back Robert Turbin, is the ‘strong dude’ Carroll wanted for when Marshawn Lynch takes a breather. … They don’t need much help in the secondary, but took two sixth-round flyers on Jeremy Lane and Winston Guy. Grade: B


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