Kevin King would fit as newest member of Seahawks' Legion of Boom

The latest mock draft from Mel Kiper has the Seahawks staying local and taking athletic Washington conerback Kevin King. Otto Greule Jr/Getty Images

The Seattle Seahawks have not drafted a cornerback before the fourth round since Pete Carroll and GM John Schneider took over back in 2010.

But there are plenty of reasons why this year could be an exception.

In his most recent mock draft for ESPN Insider, Mel Kiper Jr. has Seattle selecting Washington cornerback Kevin King with the 26th pick in the first round.

Kiper has King as the fourth cornerback off the board, behind Ohio State's Marshon Lattimore, Ohio State's Gareon Conley and LSU's Tre'Davious White.

If you're wondering about offensive tackle, Kiper has Wisconsin's Ryan Ramczyk going off the board at No. 16 and Alabama's Cam Robinson being taken at No. 25.

Drafting King would make sense on a number of levels, starting with need. Schneider has admitted that need is often a factor, especially given where the Seahawks are as a franchise. Seattle obviously has Richard Sherman at one cornerback spot, but the other one is wide open. DeShawn Shead is coming off of an ACL and meniscus tear from the divisional round of the playoffs and might not be ready for the start of the season.

Jeremy Lane is best suited as the nickel. And beyond that, it's guys like Neiko Thorpe and Perrish Cox competing for playing time.

Carroll has always felt comfortable playing rookies and letting them take their lumps. There's a decent chance that whoever is going to start at right cornerback in Week 1 is not currently on the roster.

As for King (6-foot-3, 200 pounds, 32-inch arms), he has a rare combination of talent, length and athleticism. A three-year starter, he began his career with the Huskies at safety before moving over to corner.

At the combine, King tested in the 99.3 percentile of athleticism in Zach Whitman's SPARQ rankings when compared to all NFL corners. The raw tools are phenomenal, and with guys like Sherman, Shead and Byron Maxwell, Carroll has shown he can coach the cornerback position like few others in the league.

The Seahawks have a good relationship with Washington coach Chris Petersen and will likely have an excellent grasp of King's intangibles going into the draft.

There were 14 corners at the combine who measured in at least 6 foot with 32-inch arms. In other words, the Seahawks will have plenty of options to address their secondary.

But King's athleticism gives him special upside, and he could very well be an option at the end of the first round.