Today, the San Francisco 49ers sent out a mass email to the rest of the teams in the NFL stating that Taylor Mays is available for trade. New 49ers coach Jim Harbaugh explained the email by suggesting that Mays was favored more by the previous coaching staff for the previous defensive scheme.
Mays was drafted last year in the second round by the 49ers under somewhat bizarre circumstances. Mays, who was often projected to be a top-10 pick during his outstanding career at USC under coach Pete Carroll, eventually was projected by most draft analysts to be taken around the middle of the first round.
New Seahawks coach Pete Carroll had the opportunity to take Mays with the 14th pick, but took another safety, Earl Thomas, instead. Mays vented publicly after the draft, stating that he felt Carroll didn’t prepare him well for the draft, and was angry that Carroll passed him up in the draft.
This might make the Seahawks seem like an unlikely destination for Mays.
But… think about it.
Mays, a second-year player who should be considered an outstanding prospect, should only get better as he gains more experience. The fact that the 49ers have given up on him already is likely a red flag for many NFL teams.
While Carroll clearly felt that Earl Thomas was a better option in the draft (he probably was), the Seahawks have a clear need at safety. Mays is an excellent athlete, one of the most physically-gifted safeties to be drafted in recent years, and would likely be quite familiar with Carroll’s defensive schemes.
Carroll knows Mays well from college, and knows whether or not Mays can play in the NFL. He probably knows more about Mays’ character and potential than just about anyone in the world. If he thinks Mays can play, I wouldn’t be surprised to see Carroll try to mend his relationship with Mays and see how much the 49ers want for him. At what will probably be a very low price, Mays looks like a potentially cost-effective solution for the Seahawks’ at safety, and I’d love to see the Hawks make a move for him.
Here’s a link to video of Taylor Mays playing for Carroll in college where he was a three time First-team All-American from 2007 to 2009: Mays at USC
About the Author
Written by Erik Olsoy
Erik was born in Columbus, Ohio during the only Ohio State football victory over Michigan in the 1980s, but moved to Washington state and grew up there. His loyalty to Ohio State remains strong, but his strongest allegiances developed toward Seattle sports. Though he recently graduated from Boston College, he has not yet been converted to the ways of New England Sportsdom, and only roots for the Red Sox against the Yankees because the Yankees are the root of all evil.