As I sat excitedly in front of my computer screen on April 26, watching the 2012 NFL Draft unfold over Twitter, I couldn't wait to see who the Seattle Seahawks were going to select at No. 15. South Carolina DE Melvin Ingram was still there, and I was certain that he was going to be the next member of my favorite team.
And then the news arrived. Bruce Irvin, a DE/LB out of West Virginia was the pick.
There was that brief, cruel period in time where I saw the word "Irvin" on my screen, and my brain converted it into "Ingram," so for a second or two, I was hopping up and down, jubilant that the Seahawks had landed the guy I wanted at that spot. Then I noticed "West Virginia" and thought to myself, "Wait a second ... Melvin Ingram didn't play for the Mountaineers..."
When the reality of who had actually been selected finally registered within the grey matter in my skull, my jaw dropped. Bruce Irvin? At No. 15? What the... ???
I was still in a state of shock three picks later when Ingram went to the San Diego Chargers at No. 18.
After a night's sleep, I'm still in shock. Bruce Irvin? No. 15?
Now, this is absolutely not a knock on Bruce Irvin at all. I know who he is, and as a fan of West Virginia football, I've seen him on TV a number of times. I like how he plays. He rushes the quarterback very well, and he certainly fills a need for the Seahawks.
With the No. 11 pick of the second round, I'd have been really excited about Irvin's selection. But not with the No. 15 overall. That's way too early for a pass rusher who struggles to stop the run and to cover tight ends one-on-one.
I had already been holding my breath for awhile after the Seahawks traded with the Philadelphia Eagles to move down from the No. 12 spot to No. 15, hoping with every fiber of my being that Ingram's name wouldn't be called by the Arizona Cardinals or the St. Louis Rams. It wasn't.
When the clock started for Seattle, the Seahawks had their choice of any defensive end out there. Not a single one had been selected. Not Ingram. Not Quintin Coples. Not Chandler Jones. Not Shea McClellin. Not Whitney Mercilus.
I started wondering if Seattle might trade down again, but I crossed my fingers that they wouldn't. Yahoo! Sports had Ingram ranked as the No. 24 prospect in the entire 2012 NFL Draft, and I knew that we were getting into a slew of teams that would also be looking for a pass rusher. He wasn't going to last much longer.
"Take Ingram now!" I yelled at my computer screen. "Take him NOW!!"
But they didn't. They took Irvin, instead. They took a guy that they probably could have gotten in the second round with the No. 15 overall pick. A guy that Yahoo! Sports had ranked as the No. 62 overall prospect. Unbelievable. And predictably, Ingram, Coples, Jones, McClellin, and Mercilus were all gone within the next 11 picks.
I was floored. I'm still floored.
I grew up in Washington State, but I live in central Indiana now, so I'm also a fan of the Indianapolis Colts. My wife likes to remind me that I nearly had a rage-induced stroke back in 1998 when the Colts selected Peyton Manning over Ryan Leaf, and I developed an eye twitch a year later when they picked Edgerrin James over Ricky Williams.
"Maybe you're not the best person to be criticizing the Seahawks at this point," she told me last night after one of my ten-minute-long expletive-laced tirades.
Maybe not. I guess that whole Manning and James thing worked out a little better for the Colts than the Leaf-Williams combo would have. I sure hope Irvin proves me just as blatantly wrong. I hope he tears it up in the NFL and becomes the next Jacob Green or Michael Sinclair. I hope my wife can add him to her list of reasons to make fun of me every year on NFL Draft Day.
But I can't help wondering what it would have been like to get Irvin and Ingram.
The author grew up in Washington State and is a lifelong fan of the Seahawks. He's also a Featured Contributor in Sports with the Yahoo! Contributor Network . You can follow him on Twitter at @RedZoneWriting and on Facebook.
Also by this Author:
- American Football
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- Seattle Seahawks
- Bruce Irvin
- Bruce Irvin