Seahawks Surprise with Clark Pick

The Seattle Seahawks took embattled former Michigan defensive end in the second round of the NFL draft Friday night. It was a move that has brought significant criticism, but the Seahawk brass insist it was the right one.

It only takes one team to like you.

That cliché was proven true Friday night when the Seattle Seahawks selected Frank Clark in the second round (63rd overall).

"My agent had always told me, 'I think the Seahawks have got a man-crush on you,'" Clark told Seahawks.com. "And I was like, 'Man, I think I'm the one with a man-crush on the Seahawks.'"

"It hasn't even sunk in yet," he said. "It all seems fake to me still. It's an honor, man. It's really an honor for a team of the caliber of the Seattle Seahawks just to have so much faith in a kid like me."

In the weeks leading up to the draft most pundits believed teams willing to place the type of faith necessary to draft Clark at all, let alone in the second round, would be few and far between. Off-field transgressions had reportedly moved him down or off many draft boards. In 2012 Clark pled guilty to felony charge of second-degree home invasion after stealing a laptop from a dorm room.  Then last year Clark was dismissed from Michigan’s football team November 17th, days after being arrested for a domestic violence incident.  The charge was eventually dropped on April 10th when he pled guilty to disorderly conduct.  That fact did nothing to curtail the intense scrutiny that came from the Seattle media after the surprise pick.

Seahawks general manager John Schneider was asked how he will respond to those that question the move after reading the details and seeing the photos in the police report.

“How I would answer that? I would understand that, ‘I totally understand that. I have four older sisters,” Schneider told reporters. I would say there are always two sides to a story. You have to go through the whole thing. You can’t just go with one police report. You have to talk to everybody involved. Everybody.”

“Our organization has an in-depth understanding of Frank Clark’s situation and background. We have done a ton of research on this young man. There hasn’t been one player in this draft that we have spent more time researching and scrutinizing more than Frank. That’s why we have provided Frank with this opportunity and are looking forward to him succeeding in our culture here in Seattle.”

For his part, Clark made no excuses about the incident.

“I believe I was wrong, and I am sorry,” Clark said in a conference call with Seattle reporters. “And the main reason why I am is because I put myself in the position where I shouldn’t have been. I’m not saying I did anything wrong as far as putting my hands on a woman, because the case played out how it did, and I’m sure it reflected that. I don’t believe that no woman should ever, ever have to go through anything like it, anything domestic. I don’t think that … anyone should put their hands on a woman.”

Clark insists that he has learned from the ordeal, and vowed in a statement to make good on the opportunity.

“Give me a couple of years and believe in me,’’ Clark said. “I promise you… I’m saying it right now, and I promise you (that) you won’t be upset.”

Now Clark’s attention will turn to earning a role on a defense widely regarded as the NFL’s best.

"I don't care where they play me," Clark told Seahawks.com. "Wherever they play me that's where I want to make an impact on the game."

“I'm going to come in with the same mindset as a guy who's coming in as an undrafted guy, or as a free-agent looking for a job," Clark said. "I don't have a job. It's not solidified. I have to earn it. I haven't got down there to even see who my competition is."


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