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Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883
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Success in later rounds key to draft

Scott M. Johnson Everett Herald

The importance of the No. 4 overall draft pick has not been lost on local Seattle Seahawks fans, but that doesn’t mean that Tim Ruskell and Co. will pack up the tents shortly after that decision is made sometime Saturday afternoon. Strong teams are typically built through whole drafts, not through just one round.

Of the Seahawks’ 22 projected starters for 2009, only four – left tackle Walter Jones, cornerback Marcus Trufant, center Chris Spencer and defensive end Lawrence Jackson – were taken by Seattle in the first round of an NFL draft. Defensive end Patrick Kerney was Atlanta’s first-round pick before moving to Seattle as a free agent two years ago.

Ruskell’s strategy when approaching the draft is that there are no wasted picks. The Seahawks have plenty of depth issues, and Ruskell is going to do whatever he can to shore some of them up this weekend.

While he has dealt several draft picks in the past, Ruskell prefers not to give away draft picks. He sees them as the building block of any team.

This year’s draft has generally been considered to be less than top-heavy. But the latter rounds are said to have some hidden gems, as depth is pretty solid at several positions.

“Generally speaking, (this year’s draft) is about average,” said Rob Rang, draft analyst for CBS Sports. “It’s weaker at the top, but it’s a good, solid draft in the second, third and fourth rounds.”

Rang said the draft is particularly deep at cornerback, outside linebacker and offensive tackle. All three positions could help this year’s Seahawks.

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