Yes, the Seahawks have had plenty of success in the draft under Pete Carroll and John Schneider. But that only makes the periodic blunders more glaring.
The most glaring gaffe to date came in the first round of the 2011 selection process, when the Seahawks picked offensive lineman James Carpenter.
The jury is still out on Carpenter as a player, because he has been unable to play much due to various injuries. In just two NFL campaigns, he has missed the equivalent of an entire NFL season. If he can get and stay healthy, the Seahawks will be able to get to the next level, and possibly beyond.
“James, he’s an animal,” left tackle Russell Okung recently said, via Eric D. Williams of the Tacoma News Tribune. “When he’s healthy, he’s hard to beat. I don’t think there’s a guy who can line up over him and really say they can beat him, when he’s healthy.”
Carpenter simply hasn’t been healthy. This year, he had offseason knee surgery, and the team is hopeful he’ll be able to play most if not all of the 2013 season.
“James has a tremendous upside for us and I’m anxious for you guys to see what he’s capable of doing,” coach Pete Carroll said. “We expect that he’ll make it back for camp so we’ll see what happens. He can give us a special dimension if we can get him back. He should be healthy, and it’s just a matter of us getting him in shape and we’ll be very careful to make sure we don’t rush him along.”
The sooner he’s ready and the longer he can play, the better the Seahawks will be on offense. Coupled with one of the best defenses in the NFL, it could be the formula that carries them from one coast to the other next February.