It makes me nervous that Wilson's having to scramble so much because his wide receivers aren't getting open (big issue against SF, as others have pointed out, although it obviously wasn't a problem). But Pete Carroll doesn't give a damn what I think, and so far he's had no reason to. If he were interested in a short timing passing game involving crisp, precise route-runners, he wouldn't have drafted Golden Tate as his first big WR. Or Russell Wilson, for that matter, as Wilson's not going to be seeing all the up-close stuff as well as Brady or Manning can. So as much as I'd like Wilson to have options at every level of the field, I somehow doubt that falls in line with Pete's priorities.
One thing that I'll bet PC and I would agree on, though, is this offense's lack of a deep threat. The acquisitions of Kris Durham and Ricardo Lockette, both burners and little more, plus (perhaps) this front office's inability to part with Deon Butler for longer than a month, suggests that PC is still looking for someone who can threaten downfield. That would only help things more upfront, give our runners (RB or otherwise) an extra couple of yards or so, draw away defenders from shorter zones, maybe give Doug Baldwin a little more room to work his slot magic. Makes me think that this will be a prime factor for Pete when he goes plumbing through the college tapes.
Now throw in the fact that the Green Bay drafting formula that John Schneider marinated in likes to find its WR value in the 2nd and 3rd rounds (Greg Jennings, Jordy Nelson, James Jones, Randall Cobb, and now Golden Tate, all from the #36-78 pick range since 2006), throw in all the other earmarks of PC's preferences at wide receivers, and who besides Brandon Coleman (I doubt he declares, or gets out of the first round if he does) jumps out at you?
Cobi Hamilton of Arkansas has had consistently solid production this year, and PC's gotta love his YPA - it's averaged 17.2 through four years of college. He's really risen to the challenge as the Razorbacks' top receiver in his senior year (1,335 yards, 5 TDs).
I'm only reading scouting reports at this point, but they're pretty consistent and they seem to point to Pete Carroll. 6'3" and good at using it to his advantage. Red-zone threat. Physical and aggressive with the football, a huge plus for this team. Good leaper, hands-catcher, decent in traffic with a wide catch radius. Sneaky-good at YAC, natural body control. Able to track, adjust to, and shield balls from defenders. Willing downfield blocker. Known as a big-play producer. So far, so Seattle.
As far as speed, it's decent for his frame (4.5) but doesn't make him a true burner. He's a "build-up speed" guy downfield once he gets a few steps. It's been enough to force college defenses to respect him as a deep threat - his best separation seems to occur there, and his YPA backs it up.
The things that hold him back seem to match up with the things that Pete Carroll doesn't care about. Again, his initial speed isn't explosive. He won't get a lot of separation on short routes, at least in his first couple seasons. The majority of his routes at Arkansas have been either deep downfield or crossing routes, drags, and curls. It's a limited route tree and that seems to be the big reservation with scouts, but it fits Seattle fairly well. Darell Bevell runs a lot of these with Rice and Baldwin, and Russell Wilson is the kind of QB who can easily buy time for Hamilton to break open on a deep post. And Hamilton sounds like he'll do a good job validating those deep sideline prayers that Wilson puts up for Tate.
Reading the scouting reports, I was struck by how much he sounded like a bigger, slightly less nimble version of Golden Tate, right down to the bewildered tone from scouts who wonder how he gets so much YAC. There's some inconsistency in aspects of his game like burst and lateral explosion, but this team managed to beat the inconsistency out of Tate and they're sure not reliant on Hamilton being the complete package in year one.
The wide catch radius and size, on the other hand, remind me of a slightly faster Mike Williams with a more natural feel for deep routes. Or maybe I'm a complete idiot when it comes to scouting. But I do think it's telling that he draws quick comparisons to two recent Seattle receivers whom Carroll went for. Good physical qualities, good matchups with our offense's priorities, room to develop. Could be very PC.
After satisfying scouts who were waiting to see how he'd handle the #1 job at Arkansas, it wouldn't be a surprise to see Hamilton drafted by Seattle with their late second pick. Maaaybe even early or mid-second if we trade back from late first.