Bruce Irvin going at 15th overall still ranks as the most surprising pick of the NFL draft, but maybe only to you and me. Folks in and around the league might not have shared our surprise.
Had the Seahawks not taken him, according to one report, a number of other teams were ready to pounce on the pass rusher out of West Virginia.
Here's a snippet of the report from Len Pasquarelli at The Sports Xchange.
Less than five minutes after the Seahawks plucked Irvin, with a pick that surprised many pundits, the telephone rang in the Seattle "war room." On the other end was a Jets' official, good-naturedly cursing a Seahawks' counterpart for having chosen the prospect New York planned to grab one pick later. San Francisco dispatched an assistant coach to meet with, and work out, Irvin two days before the draft. One of the teams intrigued by Irvin phoned him the week before the draft to indicate its interest in him.
Someone with the Jets cursing? Why, that's difficult to fathom.
Seahawks head coach Pete Carroll shared some similar information.
There's not a coach in this league that didn't look at this kid and know that he's a unique, special talent. Our phone's already been flooded by our coaching friends calling in that realized what we're getting. We did a good thing here today.
So if you're a Seattle fan and you were disappointed with the Bruce Irvin selection, maybe this cushions the blow for you. Chances are, you made up your mind about who you wanted the Seahawks to draft based on other peoples' mock drafts and information you gathered from ESPN, the NFL Network, or various websites like this one.
But mock drafts, as educational and entertaining as they can be, are severely limited in their accuracy by the fact that no team willingly divulges anything that's true.
Just because Irvin's name didn't make it onto someone's list of best available players doesn't mean that there weren't numerous teams around the league who would've been giddy to get Irvin. There's no reason to walk around looking like this. It might not have been the popular move, but it's one that was anticipated and admired by other people around the league.