Geno Smith for $40m? How about Ge-NO!

I was listening to 710 Seattle Sports yesterday and a clip was played featuring Dave Wyman discussing Geno Smith’s contract situation:

“I feel like, for whatever reason, Geno wants $40m. That’s his number”

Wyman isn’t just casually throwing out the $40m as a suggestion. He is well connected to the team and it was announced yesterday that John Schneider will be appearing on his radio show every Thursday until the draft.

This is a steer. This is a nugget of information, pulling back the curtain and letting fans know where the negotiation is.

Smith’s camp are asking for $40m.

I don’t think it’s worth overreacting too much to the news. This is likely a starting point for negotiations. It’s the same average salary being given to Derek Carr, Dak Prescott and Matt Stafford (although Carr is about to be cut by the Raiders).

This simply sets a high bar for the discussion, while the Seahawks will try to set a low bar. From there, the two sides will work on a compromise. That’s business.

However, there is one problem.

By introducing the $40m number, it normalises the idea of paying Geno Smith $30m. Or the $32.4m he’d get on the franchise tag. Suddenly that feels like a more reasonable number simply because it isn’t $40m.

My response to this is…

No, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no.


How has this become our reality? How have we gone from the Russell Wilson trade, embracing an opportunity to draft a replacement and potentially benefit from years of cost-effective quarterback play, to having a serious debate about paying Geno Smith a similar salary to the one they shipped to Denver 12 months ago?

Smith had one good season in a journeyman career. It wasn’t even a full season of quality play either. You can make the arguments about why his form tailed off and some are valid points to raise. Yet the truth is he still made errors and could easily have had more turnovers — as noted in a previous article:

Hugh Millen raised an interesting point on KJR on Friday. He pointed to a stat provided by PFF listing ‘turnover worthy plays’ by each quarterback. Smith had the second most in the NFL, just behind Josh Allen. Millen also pointed out that Allen had far more ‘explosive’ passing plays and a lot more rushing yards to compensate for his erraticism.

Building on the point, he then noted that when looking at the top-10 quarterbacks — on average 80.6% of their turnover worthy plays had resulted in actual turnovers. In comparison, Geno Smith saw only 48% of his turnover worthy plays actually result in an interception.

That’s staggering.

If he’d thrown the 80.6% average like the rest of the QB’s in the top-10, he would’ve had 25 picks. Even if he’d had a still well below average 65% — he would’ve led the league in turnovers.

I’m not even sure if this accounts for stuff like the pick-six against San Francisco in Seattle which was called back for a fortuitous penalty. That play was blown dead, after all. So it could be even worse than these numbers suggest.

Regardless, Smith had incredible luck when it came to turnovers this season.

There’s a key point to be raised here. The ridiculous state of middle-class quarterback salaries in the league shouldn’t dictate anything. If a handful of middling QB’s get paid a lot of money, you are not duty-bound to give Geno Smith the same contract.

Nobody can look at the $46m given to Kyler Murray, the $40.5m given to Derek Carr, the $40m given to Dak Prescott, the $35m given to Kirk Cousins or the $29m given to Ryan Tannehill and think that’s money well spent.

Desperation at the position has created a financial problem. Teams fearing life without the ‘good not great’ quarterback end up sleepwalking into awful contracts, handcuffing themselves to mediocrity.

Often those teams cling to the false hope that ‘things might be different next year’. It never is. Season after season we see the same thing. A team good enough not to be bad — but nowhere near good enough to be Champions.

The thing is, you can understand why the Minnesota Vikings are inclined to keep themselves in this rut. They’re picking 24th overall. In order to trade into the top-five, it might cost them three first round picks. Unless they want to launch a major rebuild, they face the prospect of sticking with Cousins or rebuilding painfully.

In that awkward situation — being able to offer the fans some modest hope, being able to sell tickets and merchandise, being able to play a playoff game or two — that makes business sense even if we know the Vikings are never likely to win anything with Cousins on a $35m deal.

Yet isn’t that the point? To win titles. Not make up the playoff numbers.

Now look at the Titans. When they paid Tannehill it was seen as a good move. In the years that followed, Tennessee had to restructure his deal twice because the cost became prohibitive. As a consequence, his three-year deal evolved into a four-year contract. Meanwhile, the Titans haven’t won a single playoff game since he re-signed.

Now, they’re being linked with a big trade up the board into the top-five. To do what? You guessed it — draft a cheaper, more talented quarterback. Just as the 49ers felt obliged to do to try and replace Jimmy Garoppolo.

The Seahawks face no such dilemma. Thanks to Denver, they have the #5 pick. One of the top-four quarterbacks will be available to them at #5. They have an opportunity to try and emulate the Eagles — who were a four-win team in 2020 and a nine-win team in 2021. Now they’re in the Super Bowl.

I am totally convinced that C.J. Stroud, Bryce Young, Will Levis and Anthony Richardson are capable of doing what Jalen Hurts has done. Build the roster around a young quarterback and you can set out to emulate the Eagles.

You’re not guaranteed to succeed. Nobody is saying that. It’s a plan, though, that makes more sense than paying Geno Smith a fortune and being forced to rely solely on the draft to add to your roster because most of your cap space is gone.

I’ve always felt keeping Geno Smith as your answer to Alex Smith in Kansas City — then drafting an heir apparent — is the best plan. That requires a bridge contract though. Not $40m. Not $32.4m. Not $30m.

I’m not even sure why we’re talking about these numbers. Who is the other team creating a heated market for Geno? Who is it? Every single article I read barely mentions Smith as an option for the Saints, Jets, Panthers, Colts etc. There’s plenty of Aaron Rodgers chatter, Derek Carr speculation and Jimmy Garoppolo talk. There’s never anything about Geno Smith.

The only team I can imagine having interest is Tampa Bay. Todd Bowles knows Geno from their New York Jets days and they’re interviewing Dave Canales, Seattle’s QB coach, for their offensive coordinator role.

The Buccs can’t rebuild because they have too many hefty contracts. Their only solution is to re-work deals to reduce their -$58m cap hole they’re currently in.

That in itself is a problem though. The one other potential suitor that appears obvious is $58m over the cap. Are they really in a position to throw money at Smith?

Why do the Seahawks need to even go as high as $30m? Just because that’s perceived to be market value? Screw market value. He’s worth as much as the highest bidder is willing to pay. The Seahawks should be bold — let him test the market. Be prepared to lose him. It’d be worth it to get a better deal, save money and potentially land Smith on another incentivised contract. If someone does offer around $30m — good for him. Wish him well and move on.

A lot of fans will say the cap is meaningless and the Seahawks can structure a deal to avoid a big cap hit this year. That’s very true. However, if you’re signing someone to a contract worth $30-35m a year — you can’t have a cheap year-one cap-hit unless the money becomes enormous in future seasons. That will lead to dead money if you part ways, or you’ll be left paying a massive amount to a quarterback in his mid-30’s — limiting what you can do elsewhere to improve your roster.

Essentially whatever money you give to Geno could be spent elsewhere — possibly on multiple players.

This brings me back to the original point. Just because the quarterback market is completely dumb, doesn’t mean YOU have to join in. You can say ‘no’. You can draft a quarterback at #5. You can make Drew Lock your bridge, or someone else.

You don’t have to pay Geno Smith — especially when the likelihood is with or without Smith, you are building for another two off-seasons at least. And like Cousins, Tannehill, Carr and co — is he ever going to be able to win you a Super Bowl if he’s taking up a large chunk of your cap space and needing to cover flaws on the roster?

Let’s look at how the franchise-tag amount of $32.4m — a figure a lot of people seem comfortable with — compares to other positions. The stupidity of overpaying at quarterback is really brought home by the following list of players and their average salaries:

Myles Garrett — $25m
Maxx Crosby — $23m
Chris Jones — $20m
Jalen Ramsey — $20m
Haason Reddick — $15m
Trey Hendrickson — $15m
Budda Baker — $14.75m
D.J. Reader — $13.25m
Javon Hargrave — $13m

Look at the impact players you could sign, that have been available in free agency recently, for the price of Geno Smith. That’s before we even get into the point that Smith’s agents are supposedly asking for a contract worth $15m more than Myles Garrett’s.

Again — this is silly. We shouldn’t care ‘what the market says’ at quarterback. The market is broken. You eat it and accept it for a Joe Burrow or Patrick Mahomes. You know it’s going to cost you. But the simple fact is it’s too expensive to sign non-elite quarterbacks. You should be prepared to look elsewhere to find value, just as you did in 2022 when you paid Smith $3.5m plus incentives.

Turning that into a contract worth nearly ten times the amount would be the polar opposite of value. It’d be even worse if Smith’s form was akin to the second half of the 2022 season for an extended period.

People talk about the risk of going the rookie route. Sure. Let’s also acknowledge that committing massive money to Smith is also a risk.

I think there’s a possibility we’ll begin to view the smart, dynamic teams as the ones who game the QB market.

The Seahawks should be prepared to do that. At the moment, all the signs are they’re preparing to pay Smith. Maybe they’ll create a deal that ‘looks’ good so Geno can say he won a great contract but in reality, gives the team plenty of leeway?

I can only hope that’s true. Keeping a player you like and believe in is understandable but it has to be for the right price. Forty million dollars is not the right price for Geno Smith.

I still think fans and media alike should be more prepared to embrace drafting a quarterback at #5, signing a cheaper bridge quarterback like Drew Lock, using your cap saving to add talent in free agency and then using your remaining premium stock at picks #20, #38 and #53 to add the best talent available.

This is a rebuild, not a quick haircut and off you go.

It’s time to be firm, strict and prepared to move on to another quarterback if needs be. This is a better quarterback draft than many are suggesting, too.

Smith and the Seahawks are good for each other but not for an eye-watering amount of money. The Seahawks should be the team that says ‘no’ to the nonsense of the quarterback money market. The Seahawks should set out to be the trailblazers who game the system — using their own offensive scheme — to produce value at a cheaper price.

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  1. Blitzy the Clown

    My totally off the cuff reaction is if Geno wants $40m next year, make him earn it.

    Base salary of $15m. $5m bonus for making the playoffs. $10m additional bonus for making the Super Bowl. And another additional $10m for winning the Super Bowl.

    If Geno wants to be paid like a Super Bowl winning QB, then he needs to be a Super Bowl winning QB.

    • cha

      You’ve added new meaning to the term “Not Likely To Be Earned Incentives.”

      • Blitzy the Clown

        It is possible to draft a contract that gives Geno the $$$ he wants, but is cap reasonable year 1, and with reasonable exit ramps for Seattle beyond.

        Ultimately, the question is, what is he worth to us?

        In 2023, maybe as much as $20-25m. Definitely not $40m (unless he wins the Super Bowl). But unless Seattle fail to draft a decent QB in either 2023 or 2024, he’s not worth much after next season.

        And if they do fail to draft a reasonable QB of the future, then blowing too much cap on Smith won’t really matter

        • Fudwamper

          Why is Geno worth 20 Mil? Who is going to pay Geno 20 Mil? My wish has always been to dump Geno, Diggs, and Adam’s. Go out and get 40 Mil in DL and G help. Sprinkle in replacement level back up RB and S’s. Draft a qb and best play available. Stop with the nonsense contracts for people.

          P.S. I like Diggs, just not 18mil year Diggs.

          • AlaskaHawk

            Rob is spot on with this analysis. This is supposed to be a rebuilding period. When will the Seahawks tank for picks? Apparently never. So – don’t waste your money on a quarterback right now. The rebuilding process will go on for at least two more years. If you can get a decent quarterback for cheap – go for it. But don’t stress on paying a quarterback because we don’t know who the future quarterback will be.

            So I’m a cheapskate. Geno made 7.5 million last year. I’m willing to go 10 million a year guaranteed for two years. That’s all I would be willing to pay, and I think that’s pretty generous considering the Seahawks will draft a rookie and move on from Geno anyway.

            But this isn’t about what Geno or any other quarterback is worth. They need to dump the unproductive players, sign productive players, and then they can pay for a quarterback. It’s just part of the process and paying alot early will screw the process and set it back from 2 years timeline to never. As in see Russell Wilsons timeline with Seahawks. Were they ever close to the superbowl again? No.

      • SWE Seahawks

        If Schneider and Carroll pays Geno 30+ millions/year, I will cheer for the 49ers next season 🙁

        Can’t in good conscious support that level of stupidity.

        They have been given a great oppurtunity by the broncos to be able to pick their next franschise QB

        In case they don’t like any of the current top 4 qbs in the draft or they are all taken before our pick, and Geno won’t accept 20 million or lower, then play Drew Lock, suck for another year and pick your next Qb in the next draft. Locking yourself to Geno for the next couple of years in a bad contract is borderline insane in my opinion.

    • Geoff u

      How does that effect salary cap though? You go from being at the limit to being 25 million over. Actually, Isn’t it just a fine? And well worth paying if you win the super bowl? This might just be brilliant…

    • William McNeill

      40 million is an average qb, not a Superbowl winning qb. Shoot kyler Murry makes 46 million.

      • Rob Staton

        Then they should ignore the market and be a trailblazer because that is a ridiculous amount for average

  2. Mick

    I’m perfectly fine with giving Geno Smith 40 mil, but in total for 4 years of contract.

    Seriously speaking, we’re so much better off with a rookie that I could even live with drafting a QB in the later rounds.

    • Glor

      How exciting would it be to just field 3 rookie qbs next year. Spend the money on the trenches, I will cry if they pay Geno this nutty amount of money. Rob is spot on, teams need to just say no to the average qbs expecting more than 15/yr

  3. DC1234

    Well Rob, Keyshawn Johnson disagrees with you.

    Keyshawn is so wrong. Say Geno deserves above the franchise tag amount of $32 mill. If would sign Geno to 3 year $35 mill per. $70 guaranteed.

    He said right now, Geno is better than the top 4 qb in the draft.

    Salk said now you can forget about signing Geno to a $20-25 mill a year contract.

    Also KJ this week on air retracted his statement earlier in the year about resigning Geno to a $25 mill a year contract. Say he should get above $30. I wonder if Geno had a talk with KJ.

    • Rob Staton

      Salk said now you can forget about signing Geno to a $20-25 mill a year contract.

      Then we should forget about signing him

      But when this point is made — it’d be handy to know which other team is paying him $30m+

      • Phil

        Rob, I go back and forth on this; so don’t lump me in with someone trying to sell a particular side. I just want to give you the opportunity to respond to a couple of arguments the Devil’s Advocate would likely propose:
        1. You mentioned the Eagles. Which draft pick did they use on their current starter? Could the Hawks not implement the same plan by taking Hooker?

        2. Fourteen teams need QBs in the NFL. Is it possible that while Geno is among the top 5 veteran QBs on the market, most authors already believe that Geno is just likely to re-sign with the Hawks? This may explain why he isn’t among those listed as a “top replacement” for QB needy teams.

        3. Getting Geno Smith to play the Alex Smith role would not preclude the Hawks from drafting the heir apparent. *Alex Smith signed a 4 year/ $94Mill contract that would be the cap equivalent to giving Geno a 4 year/ $140M. (Not a bad blueprint, eh?)

        *I can totally augment, season, and even cheer lead your argument; but I thought it might be more interesting to hear your response from these potential objections.

        • hoggs41

          People outside the market just dont really know what they are talking about. Of course these guys are going to say he needs to be paid. Cant listen to a player talk as they have player mentality.

        • Rob Staton

          1. You mentioned the Eagles. Which draft pick did they use on their current starter? Could the Hawks not implement the same plan by taking Hooker?

          The Eagles didn’t have a top-five pick to spend on a QB and we do. Are we saying they would’ve passed on Justin Herbert to take Hurts? I’d guess a GM as savvy as Howie Roseman wouldn’t have done and imagine this team with Herbert.

          I don’t think Hooker is as good as others do, plus he’s already a year older than Hurts before even starting his NFL career and he has a serious knee injury.

          Fourteen teams need QBs in the NFL. Is it possible that while Geno is among the top 5 veteran QBs on the market, most authors already believe that Geno is just likely to re-sign with the Hawks?

          When you check in with forums and articles, the only ever time I see Smith mentioned is people saying they aren’t really interested.

          Getting Geno Smith to play the Alex Smith role would not preclude the Hawks from drafting the heir apparent. *Alex Smith signed a 4 year/ $94Mill contract that would be the cap equivalent to giving Geno a 4 year/ $140M. (Not a bad blueprint, eh?)

          You are citing the contract Smith signed with Washington. The deal he signed in Kansas City was for four years, $68m with an average salary of $17m taking him through to the 2018 season. The cap has grown by 21% since 2018. Geno Smith signing for $32.4m for this year, on the tag for example, wouldn’t be an inflation-level raise of 21%, it’d be a raise of 56% compared to Smith’s bridge deal. Seems a bit unreasonable to me.

          • Phil

            Thank you for this in depth response. I appreciate it. Google confused me when I asked for his final Chiefs contract….I see now that it was actually showing me his Redskins contract. oops. (Different team. Different year. Different situation.) Sportrac has me clarified now. 🙂

            >I’d be interested in Geno being our Alex….especially if we can find our next Patrick. But I definitely don’t want a giant cap hit in 2023. It’s going to be very interesting.

            • Sean

              Great back and forth discussion. Thank you both. This is why I read this blog every day and contribute via Patreon.

        • Seanmatt

          The Chiefs signed Alex Smith to a four-year deal in 2014 and drafted Mahomes in 2017. They didn’t re-sign Smith and draft Mahomes during the same season. Huge difference

    • Hawkdawg

      Actually, what I saw out of KJ’s mouth when it came to Geno’s proper payment was $20 mil, not $25…

      • Elmer

        Yes that’s right, and he later revised it up to 25.

    • Chris

      Ex-players almost always think teams should just pay players whatever. They seem almost incapable of looking at things from a GM’s perspective. I never listen to ex-player opinions on contract negotiations.

    • Jordie

      I really liked what Brock said, along the lines of manage like a fan, you’ll become a fan… in other words do what the fans say all the time and you will join them in the stands rather than the GMs seat.
      PC / JS played hard with Clowney, supposedly capping the offer to him at 12, when 15/18/20 were being proclaimed for him. I really hope they stick to a sensible number.
      As Rob says, the market should determine the price. I would really like to get Lock signed for a small cap number… in our “QB friendly” scheme, then we have a presence in the QB room that can be a starter and hand hold a rookie.

      • Rob Staton

        They said they had two number one QB’s last summer

        Ok, prove it

        Keep the one who won’t cost you a fortune

  4. Hunter

    It’s absolutely wild the state of the QB market in the NFL. It seems like every team is scared to try an unknown rookie at qb instead of sticking with an over paid vet just because they know what they’ll get. I wish Seattle would buck the trend let smith walk and go with the rookie

  5. cha

    As someone who has never been involved in NFL contract negotiations, I try to avoid making ‘absolute statements’ when I can. I just don’t know what goes on behind closed doors.

    So keep that in mind when I say this:

    If Geno’s team is seriously coming at the Seahawks with a real $40m AAV request. As in, with real guaranteed money, I cannot see a path forward for negotiations other than for the Seahawks to say “Let’s maintain our friendship by letting things breathe a bit. I don’t think we can get on common ground before the new league year starts. We want Geno back as part of our team, but I think we should take a break and let you guys go out and see what you can get in the marketplace. I hope you’ll give us the chance to match any offer. Let’s plan on talking early in free agency. Until then, wish you all the best.”

    • DCSeattle

      Well said. A definite “go test the market” situation. If he gets PAID by someone else, awesome, happy for him and wish him the best. Love to have him in Seattle, but on reasonable terms that allows the team to keep building.

      • JimQ

        It seems to me that it may be a valid possibility that PC/JS really WANT one of the top 4 QB’s and by extension they are hiding that interest (as in a “smokescreen”) from everyone. Already, the media doesn’t have many thinking the Seahawks will actually draft a 1-st round QB because they just really love Gino Smith & they need defensive players a lot more.

        It very well could be they are just positioning for the draft & have no real intentions of actually paying Geno Smith anywhere near the franchise tag dollar amount.

        • JimN


        • DarrellDownUnder

          Really hoping this is what’s going on. Fingers crossed.

        • Roy Batty

          After the great job they did in hiding the Wilson trade negotiations, I wouldn’t trust anything that’s said by Pete or John.

          Negotiations are a game. Hopefully this game plays out to March 15th.

        • HawkHawk

          Ah, but by the time the draft comes along, the league will be over a month into Free Agency and everybody will know if they signed Geno or let him go test the waters.

          • JimQ

            A good reason for “being in the middle of back & forth negotiations AKA: a stall”. It is a game and misinformation is a big part of that. The “SMOKE SCREEN” is often used by many teams and the Seahawks are known as one of them. Also, a “take it or leave it” low offer to Smith & allowing him to test the market could very well stall things off a bit as would protracted back and forth negotiations.

    • Steve Nelsen

      I have said repeatedly on this blog that I wasn’t concerned about the “$30 million a year” chatter because you could come up with a 3-year $90 million contract that has a first year cap hit of $15-16 million and an affordable out for Seattle after 2 years.

      But there is absolutely no way you can cook the math to come up with a $40 million/year contract that works for Seattle. None. As much as I enjoyed Geno’s unexpected success last year, if this is really what Geno is asking for then you wish him well, draft a QB and either let him test the market or just move on.

      Rob said months ago that his thought on Geno was, “If he is affordable, you bring him back. If he isn’t you don’t.” There might be reasonable differences of opinion about what is affordable but I think we can all agree that $40 million/year is not it.

      • Rob Staton

        I have said repeatedly on this blog that I wasn’t concerned about the “$30 million a year” chatter because you could come up with a 3-year $90 million contract that has a first year cap hit of $15-16 million and an affordable out for Seattle after 2 years.

        I’m not sure how realistic this is.

        Ryan Tannehill’s cap hit and dead money:

        2020 — 22.5m / 62m
        2021 — 11m / 68.5m
        2022 — 38.6m / 57.4m
        2023 — 36.6m / 18.8m

        So the Titans had an affordable out in year four and it’ll still cost them $18m in cap space to get out of the deal

        The only way we cook this to work in Seattle’s favour is if Geno Smith basically signs a multi-year deal with minimal guarantees that all come off the books early, thus essentially it exists as a one or two-year cheap deal in reality.

        • Steve Nelsen

          I was thinking $30 signing bonus so Geno has more guaranteed money/salary in year 1 than a franchise tag. The cap hit is spread over 3 years.
          $5M salary 2023 ($15M cap hit)
          $25M salary 2024 ($35M cap hit)
          $30M salary 2025 ($40M cap hit but only $10M dead money if Seattle cuts him, that could even be split between 2025 and 2026 with a post June 1 cut. I consider this a reasonable “out” for Seattle after 2 years.

          • Rob Staton

            This is still massive cap hits and dead money though. Even if you do this you’re paying Geno Smith $35m that could be spent elsewhere in 2024. You could have a year two QB at that point and $35m to spend

        • Donald_Duck

          For 40 million, don’t let the door hit you where the good Lord split you!

      • Charles

        I would love to see an incentive deal completely tied to his contract. He will of course have a base pay. Not a fluke… prove it. Stages of 💰 given for td thresholds achieved, qb ratings and efficiency metrics. Also take the injury aspect out of the equation. If injury does occur , pay him 💰 based off of the type of injury. The more severe the injury, the higher the pay out. It is good to have success stories and pay people appropriately. It is a tough pill to swallow paying anyone future money for past performances.

  6. Luke

    If they pay Geno anything above 15 mil Schneider ought to be fired the same day

    • Phil

      If Geno sign anything close to that kind of low-ball offer, then Geno’s agent would have every one of his clients fire him. 🙂

      • Sea Mode

        Low ball? That’s all he’s worth.

        His agents disagree? Then tell them to go get a better offer from another team.

        • Elmer

          Yeah, maybe that’s what it comes down to. Here’s a 15M offer, tell us if you get a better offer, we’ll see if we can match it.

  7. Peter

    For fans of draft simulations looking for a new challenge based on Rob’s handy guide to a list of awesome players that are paid a lot less.

    Go check out Spotrac’s list of Free agents.

    Maybe a payne level player for 29 million and greg Gaines for their estimate of 9 milllion. Bang. Now you can start letting the draft come to you at least in that small area. Two solid to amazing tackles while they can focus on #5 and #20 on other areas.

    Heck draft Ade Ade, Henry, white,etc later but not be desperate for them to produce right away.

    • DougM

      I was using Spotrac this morning to identify Centers and Guards. I have a calculation that accounts for pressures allowed and together with combine numbers I can identify targets: Guards Ben Powers and Will Hernandez and Centers Evan Brown and Ethan Pocic.

      • Peter

        That’s awesome. I like to look at Spotrac and find the market of players.

        I misspoke above about payne at 29 million. It’s more like 19.

        I did roughly get to the guards and Hernandez jumped out at me immediately.

  8. Matt

    Amen to all of this. This whole situation is becoming a joke. The cult of Geno is absolutely wild, for a guy who has been a shit bag (play and personally) for all but 5 months of his pro football career.

    “He deserves this!”

    What? Same group that cried about RW getting similar money. It’s just wild to me…a majority of this fanbase is insane. This board is the last bastion of sanity.

    • 805Hawk


    • Balint

      Can’t agree more, Matt!

  9. Quinn

    The main argument that I see online for paying Geno is that “The Seahawks would be nothing without him so they need to pay him what he deserves.” Paying people what they deserve is what gets you fired. When Geno was a free agent last year, there were crickets from other teams. And it’s not like teams didn’t do their research, they definitely looked at Geno as a player and as a person and said no thanks.

    The same people at PFF that ranked Geno as a top 5 free agent this year are the exact same people that have Myles Murphy as a top 5 lock, didn’t have Mahomes as a first rounder, thought Clowney deserved 20 mill per year, and are not ever held accountable for being dead wrong.

    • Rob Staton

      Yep, you pay people an amount you think they will justify in the coming years

      Paying people what they ‘deserve’ for past performance is exactly how you get into trouble

      This isn’t a charity or a lovely rom-com

      It’s a ruthless business

      We’re trying to win a Super Bowl here, not give people ‘feels’

      • Quinn

        I wonder how much of this negotiation will be Pete vs John. Pete gushes about just about every player on the team and wants them back and it’s pretty obvious when he isn’t interested. JS spoke highly of Geno as well, but it wasn’t this over the top gushing that Pete does. And then you have Brady Henderson reporting that those in the FO believe this is a QB friendly system. We know how emotional and irrational Pete can get, like the Adams trade or even throwing random challenge flags during games, so Something has to give.

        • Rob Staton

          Well if JS is the person informing the media that Geno wants $40m… that would be interesting

          • Steve Nelsen

            I wondered about that. JS was clear that he had a number he was not going to go beyond. Whatever that number is, $40M has to be way past it and so this might be a way to start getting fans used to the idea that Geno might be too expensive to keep.

            • PJ in Seattle

              I really hope this is the case. Put that number out there publicly and let him and his agent go test the market. Where they will find out fast that no one with any seriousness if going to pay him anywhere near that.

              If we bid against ourselves and end up signing Geno for 30m+, I will have lost all respect for Schneider. For all the reasons Rob has stated, that would be complete malpractice for a GM.

    • cha

      To be fair PFF also had Geno at the top of their “Buyer Beware” list of free agents.

  10. Seahawk_Dan

    What’s worse is since he won Comeback Player of the Year, more Seahawk fans are foaming at the mouth to keep in no matter the cost, like give this man a blank check.

    Look, I’m sure Geno is a really nice guy and he did have arguably his best season in his entire career, but for goodness sake. Can so many fans be so dense in wanting to give him 40mil and consider that a win? Because I expect that if the universe holds true, Geno would just revert to being Geno in that his next season would be mid at best and piss poor at worst and suddenly you have a 40mil, 33 year old QB that has like 23 TD and 20 INT or something.

    Geno proved a lot of doubters wrong this year, I give him that, but there are too many examples of a player having a magical season and then getting smacked back to reality the next year.

    • Quinn

      The name that keeps popping up in my mind is Case Keenum. Absolutely lit it up in Minnesota for a season, moved on to Denver for a good chunk of change, and flamed out. Per his Wiki page, “In 15 games (14 starts) of 2017, Keenum finished with 3,547 passing yards, 22 touchdowns, seven interceptions, and a passer rating of 98.3.” Then he got a 2 year 36 million dollar deal and went back to being a pumpkin.

      • Seahawk_Dan

        The one that always comes to mind, and I feel old for this, but is Rob Johnson.

        Rob Johnson was a back up for Mark Brunell in the 90’s and got his chance to shine when Mark got hurt for a few games. Dude played lights out his first game and competently for the next few games, winning them I believe, until he got hurt and Mark came back.

        Whelp, roll into the ’98 season, the Bills trade a 1st and 4th for him and give him a 5 Year 25mil dollar (that’s about 45mil when adjusted for inflation), and ya know what? dude was hot garbage. Total burn out in Buffalo but ONE good game, or a few rather people thought a career backup that showed no previous promise was suddenly Joe Montana.

        Rob Johnson, Case Keenum, Matt Cassell – Too many in history and there’s no reason to think that Geno wouldn’t be in the same boat as them.

    • DC1234

      Worst is ppl citing Geno has 1 MVP vote (one fifth place vote) while Russ has zero. You know this year they changed the voting system by allowing votes for 2nd,3rd,4th,5th place votes.

      Btw, the medical staffer from Buffalo had a fifth place mvp vote as well.

      I bet some ppl truly believe Geno is a MVP caliber player. This is another reason he “deserves” to get paid.

      • Seahawk_Dan

        It’s brain rot. Same kind of people that click their heels together and make wishes on stars if they think Geno is secretly Tom Brady that wasn’t given a fair chance to shine.

      • 509 Chris

        Oh the MVP talk….. The point if an MVP is that the guy elevates his team all season in 17 games. A lot of guys have a stretch somewhere in the season where they’re the best in league. It doesn’t mean a thing if you can’t do it all year. Why is no one in the fan base asking what happened after Germany? Rib hit it that it was that Germany trip that killed the team. The D was suspect pretty much all year but the offense stalled significantly in the second half. When the offense is in trouble it’s typically one man who can lift it up and that’s the qb. Geno proved to be great when the stars align but if you ask him to go out and win the game in the 4th he can’t do it. Russ did that continually and the fans now love to talk shit and say he was the problem, but Geno who isn’t as good as Russ should get paid? THIS IS INSANE

    • Mr drucker in hooterville

      Btw….how does Geno win comeback POY when he was never “here”! Should be “surprise breakout POY”.

  11. hoggs41

    High as I would want to go is 3/80. Those second and third years would need some incentives.

    Im all for letting Geno walk and spending it on other impact players, the problem is they never do it. They believe in the draft and second wave of free agency. Yeah they got Avril and Bennet but that was luck. If I knew they would spend that money on free agents Id be in all day to draft a QB but will they?

    One thing about Geno is that if you pay him middle money you have a chance at elite play unlike the others but you also risk middle play or less than middle play which wouldnt be good.

    This is a very unique situation that we are in because we have never had a QB like Geno hit free agency. I would hope they would at least let him try free agency to see what is out there and go from there. If its $40 or even $30 see you later.

    In the end Im mostly on the side of let Geno walk unless the number is below $30 but I draft a QB anyways.

  12. hoggs41

    There is really three options here we are talking about.

    Option 1:

    Pay Geno and let him be your guy for the next three years. Sign Drew Lock and maybe he becomes a future Geno and maybe draft a guy in later rounds.

    Option 2:

    Pay Geno and draft a guy to replace him probably in year 2.

    Option 3:

    Let Geno walk and sign Drew Lock to be your bridge then draft a QB at 5.

    What option/s do people like?

    • Jeffrey Matson

      100 % option 3, 2023 is rebuild yr #2.

    • Elmer

      Option 2 IF you only have one year of Geno guaranteed so you only have the big salary one year, AND if they draft a QB at #5, AND of you think there is a good chance that Lock is a significant drop-off from Geno.

      When forming opinions about the future you have to make assumptions like that.

    • Ryan


    • DarrellDownUnder

      3 all day long.

      • Mr drucker in hooterville


        • Fudwamper

          Option 3.

  13. Ukhawk

    Totally agree Rob and think Schneider will set his price.

    We are so weak across the board, we need to build a team as a priority, not get a $30-40m top 10-20 QB.

    There will be other opps to get a bridge/mentor QB much more reasonably.

    With all due respect, yes lots of options at OL & TE but for goodness sake can we upgrade the front seven ASAP pls!!

  14. Kerren

    I’m not as confident as you are that we are going to have the chance to draft one of the top 4 QB’s at 5. Every team knows the QB contract facts and that increases the value of those QB’s. I can easily see AZ and Chi trading down with a blockbuster offer from the Car/AZ/LV etc. I would hope we could arrange a trade with AZ (especially if the fall in love with Anderson/Carter) since our pick would be only way to guarantee they get one of them. I have run many PFF drafts where all 4 are gone before our pick Nervous this may happen…

    • DJ 1/2 way

      Agreed. This can influence our rooting interest in the Superbowl.

      Since the NFL is a Copy-Cat league, whoever wins the superbowl will be copied. If you want a qb available at #5 then you should root for the Chiefs.

      • 509 Chris

        I really don’t think who wins the superbowl vs getting there or even winning a division will have that much difference on how people draft. Also I think we sometimes get group think around here and tend to believe the rest of the world sees the logic we do. I really think a qb will be there at 5 for us. Maybe not the guy we want but there will be one.

  15. Zane

    To me, it would truly be the final indictment of PC/JS if they were to do anything other than what you suggest here (let the market dictate Geno’s value and stick to a reasonable, bridge-QB number).

    • Big Mike


  16. RJohnson

    What’s lost in the conversation of “pay geno or get free agents” is that neither geno nor the crop of free agents is worth the money.

    Even if they won the bidding for a daron payne or hargrave, which seems unlikely given their relative cap space, are those players worth the 20-22M per season they’ll receive?

    Similarly, tremaine edmonds at 12-15M? Or germaine Pratt at 10-12M? How about Zach Allen for 10M, or Marcus Davenport for 10-12M?

    Then you get to the bargain bin, where JS has traditionally ventured. Paying a Lorenzo Carter 7M, or 5-7M to a oshane ximines is just not money well-spent. You’ll get terrible value here.

    As you mentioned a few weeks back, if you want to spend this off-season, you need to look at trade candidates. Deforest Buckner would be good not great value. Maybe TB looks to offload vita vea for a 2nd. TB is much more likely to move shaq mason than one of their foundational players like vea, but again they need to clear cap and vea would garner a significant haul. Roy robertson-Harris, bud dupree, danielle hunter are also potential moves.

    If none of these options is reasonable, Seahawks need to seriously consider rolling over as much cap as possible. There’s no need to overpay, which is nearly always the case in free agency anyway, for players who have minimal chance of being worth the contract.

    • Rob Staton

      Well, the Bengals got Hendrickson and Reader for a combined $28m in 2021

      So I’m not going to send up the white flag on free agency

      • RJohnson

        That seems like an outlier example though. I just don’t see how Payne or hargrave could be had for 14M each, given that Chicago and ATL can throw cash at those top guys to the point where they’ll be more like 40M combined vs the 28M (30M in 2023) for Hendrickson / reader. Similarly, getting h reddick for 15M per year is an outlier deal, and maybe the best free agent value in the last few years.

    • Scot04

      Dre’mont Jones would be another nice addition and already knows the 3-4 system.
      Him & Payne together would give you two 26yr old mainstays to Anchor our D-line for Years. Even if you say 36M for both, it’s better use of money than Geno.
      I’m guessing both get Franchised though. Will be interesting to see who’s actually available once Free-agency hits.

      • RJohnson

        Dremont had a 51.8 PFF grade last year, we’re better off resigning Poona if he’s a consideration.

        I just don’t see how we could outbid chi or atl for Payne.

        • Scot04

          In regards to Dre’mont’s Pff; Payne’s was only 58 Pff. Just over 2 points higher than Poona. Pff is part of the equation, but not everything.
          Obviously Payne is the better player over Poona, as is Dre’mont.
          I’ll take Dre’mont in a 3-4 over quite a few others, in my opinion he’s undervalued.
          Since he entered the league in 2019, Jones’ 130 quarterback pressures are tied for the 17th-most among interior defenders, with his 14.7% pass rush win rate 11th-best over that span.
          Plus I watched him almost every game this year as I was on my hope Denver loses tour.
          Just my opinion though.

  17. Rob Staton

    FYI — tomorrow I am interviewing Adetomiwa Adebawore

    • Zxvo3

      It’s prospect interview season everyone!

    • Steve Nelsen

      Your interviews have become one of my favorite parts of the draft season. The only downside is we always end up wanting Seattle to draft everyone you interview 😆

  18. YakiMax

    How come the DUI never gets brought up? Am I missing something?

    • cha

      When it happened a beat reporter asked the police and they said it would take until Oct 2022 to process the evidence taken.

      Geno was asked about it in camp and basically said he’s not worried about it.

      No charges have been filed and that I know of nobody has ever asked again.

      • Rob Staton

        It seems a backlog of cases might be the issue of no update:

        • Thomas Wells

          That source is spot on. For those who don’t want to read the whole thing and just want to know how this situation applies to Geno Smith:

          I’m a criminal defense lawyer that practices in king county. Geno allegedly refused a breath test. A judge signed a warrant to draw his blood. Like the article says, there’s a huge backlog in court because there’s a huge backlog at the toxicology laboratory that tests samples of blood taken from people arrested under suspicion of dui. It can take over a year for test results to come back.

          This has caused problems because a criminal defendant has a right to a speedy trial. That requires a trial within 90 days of formal filing of charges (although that rule is riddled with holes). Prosecutors work around this by dismissing dui charges, or refraining from filing them after an arrest, until the blood results come back.

          That’s what happened with Geno. The fact that charges haven’t been filed means absolutely nothing about the strength of any dui allegation against Geno. I wouldn’t be surprised whatsoever if his results come back over the legal limit, charges are filed, and he either beats the case on an evidentiary issue (ie the blood results get tossed out because they were obtained pursuant to an unlawful search or arrest) or he pleads out to DUI or a lesser offense like reckless driving.

          TLDR: The possibility of a 4 game suspension for DUI is still very much on the table for Geno Smith.

          • cha

            Thank very much for that insight.

          • PJ in Seattle

            Certainly not the expert you are in this area, but with no priors I thought a plea to reckless driving was almost an automatic.

            • Thomas Wells

              You bet cha. I wouldn’t say it’s automatic but it’s certainly a distinct possibility: first time offenders regularly plead to a reduced charge of reckless driving when it’s clear they don’t have a drinking problem and their blood alcohol content isn’t super high. I doubt a chemical dependency specialist would find evidence Geno Smith has a drinking problem – and I would say it’s pretty likely he’s already had an alcohol drug evaluation saying so (pending the results of the blood draw – if he was crazy drunk like .24 the results could change). As for the blood alcohol content it’s anyone’s guess. Representation matters too. I don’t know who would defend Geno Smith if charges are filed. But the attorney quoted in the Espn article when he was arrested, Jon Fox, is very sharp and well respected as a dui expert. You can bet Geno Smith will have top tier representation and that’s also a huge factor in how these things play out.

    • Matt

      Because most of this fanbase has no standards until a player is gone.

      • BobbyK


        I know all of us can be garbage in all walks of life… but the QB of an NFL franchise should be held to a higher standard.

        Pete Carroll obviously doesn’t care. He loves Geno Smiff. Why? Because he loves his job and mediocrity more than actually winning a Super Bowl moving forward. He won one that one time so he doesn’t care anymore. Sure, he’d like to win one again (who wouldn’t?) but he’s not willing to make the necessary sacrifices to actually win another… treading water is all he cares about anymore, which maybe applies to all of us when we’re in our 70s…

        • Big Mike

          Absolute power corrupts absolutely.
          My only hope is that John has been given personnel control and Carroll no longer has the absolute power.

          • Big Mike

            We are going to find out one way or the other in the next couple of months as it concerns Geno Smith and the possible drafting of a quarterback.

        • DriveByPoster

          //the QB of an NFL franchise should be held to a higher standard//
          Apologies for straying off-topic somewhat but I don’t agree. We should all be held to the same standards otherwise we are all just hypocrits & opening the door to discrimination.If there is something in Geno’s contract regarding behaviour whilst at work then that’s one thing but, away from the workplace, in his own time, it’s his own business. Of course, from a marketting perspective, whatever he does might have an impact on his future employability & the sort of contract offers he is likely to receive but, again, that’s his business. That’s not to say that he shouldn’t, rightly, be critisised if we don’t like his behaviour (freedom of speech & all that) but he hasn’t yet been found guilty of a criminal act, for whatever reason, as far as I know. So I think we should reserve our judgement until all the facts are in.
          Having said that, $40milion? You’re having a laugh!

  19. MountainHawker

    I’m going to be really really disappointed if we overpay Geno. The path forward seems very clear and QB/cap purgatory ain’t it

    • ulsterman

      100%, unfortunately it’s the kind of thing you can absolutely see them doing, this is the team paying Jamal Adams $18m a year

      • Big Mike

        Absolutely. Like I said above if John has personnel control hopefully he knows better otherwise same story different player.

  20. Hawkdawg

    When we talk about “the market” for Geno, there are two kinds of market. One makes little to no difference. The other makes much more.

    The first kind of market involves a salary survey of comparable QBs. Alone, that number is almost meaningless in a specific context.

    The second kind of “market” involves what other teams are willing to pay Geno specifically. Totally different question.

    Schneider has said on “record” that there is a number that would kill the chance to sign Geno. It must be lower than $40 million, given that NO other team appears to be interested in anything close to that number.

    You just can’t pay somebody into being a superstar. He is what he is. Better than he has been, but not at the numbers being shared now.

  21. Seattle Murphy

    Hear hear! Can’t agree more. Sign Geno to a two year bridge contract south of 25M, draft Richardson at 5, let Smith mentor him for a season, and trade Geno to the Bucs next offseason.

    …..Any chance Schneider reads the blog?

  22. Henry Taylor

    This article is absolute facts. Just because the market is stupid doesn’t mean you have to be. I long for the day that teams wake up to how absurd the QB market has gotten and mediocre QBs can be paid what they’re worth.

    I’d love to keep Geno at a salary befitting a player of his calibre. He deserves to be rewarded for an incredible season and career turn around, we just don’t have to destroy our cap to do it.

  23. Demitrov

    Ya, I just don’t get it. People’s perspective on this team is all askew because the expectations were that this team was gonna get 3 wins and instead we made the playoffs. But Genos play was about the same as we got from Russell Wilson for the past half decade and all we ever did during that time was sneak in to the playoffs and get blown out in the first round. Which is exactly what happened this year and now everyone’s like, ‘give me more of that please, sign geno’. If you had told people a year ago we were gonna have a top 5 pick in this draft EVERYONE would have been elated to snag a Quarterback and now because Geno had an OK season we are gonna pay him like Wilson? People were getting tired of Wilson for a number of reasons but one of them was that he couldn’t seem to elevate the team enough to justify his contract. So we traded him but now we’re just gonna commit to the same strategy by paying Geno??? Wtf.

    • cha

      I’ve found many fans have no handle on the money.

      In their eyes, money is respect. Money is keeping hometown guys home and there is no upper limit to an emotion.

      When you have to cut a player or let a player walk because of money, it’s disrespectful.

      The salary cap is just some nebulous, cold, hard, Wall Street thing that occasionally rears its ugly head.

      There are fans that are still unhappy the Seahawks cut Bobby Wagner instead of paying him $18m in 2022.

      Fans that had no problem with the Jamal Adams contract. Some still don’t. They shrug and say the defense collapsed last year because Adams wasn’t on the field.

      Fans that think it’s OK that Quandre Diggs will count $18 million on the cap this year.

      Viewed from that lens, it shouldn’t surprise anyone that there are fans that think Geno Smith should get big money.

      • Demitrov

        I know. I just wish this front office was more business-like than the fans. If no other team is gonna pay geno 30 million a year why the hell would you offer him that? Because he’s a nice guy? Because it’s only a market when there’s 2 or more buyers for genos services. If another team offers 20 million a year you offer 20 million + 1 dollar. Not 30 million. If you want to win a championship you should be looking to maximize every deal and save every buck. It’s too competitive to piss away millions bargaining against yourself.

  24. Bankhawk

    Ahhh…please, may the gods of football let one of ‘the big four QBs drop to us at pick #5!
    And let these excessive numbers cease to swirl around GS!

    • DJ 1/2 way

      So root for KC and keep some of those copy cat teams looking for the best veteran they can get!

  25. Trevor

    Great write up Rob the best and most logical summary of the situation I have seen yet.

    • Rob Staton

      Thank you

    • SeaTim

      Came here to say the same thing!

      I happen to think that Geno is a solid journeyman starting QB at this point in his career, but that’s not good enough to build a championship team around if the cost is over ~$20-25 million. Especially if the contract duration is more than a year.

      If Geno ‘resets’ the journeyman starting QB level at $20 mil he’s more likely to stay employed and starting in the league for the next 3-5 years. That’s a lot of future income in my world.

  26. Rob4q

    So looking at this another way, is it possible that they could structure a contract for Geno that pays him a good amount of guaranteed money, keeps the 2023 cap hit low and has a way out without a huge dead money cap hit in the last couple years? Could they base a lot of the 2024 & 2025 salary on incentives? Didn’t Curtis write up a Geno contract proposal a while back that had something like that?

    If Geno is who he thinks he is, and performs next year like that, then he gets paid accordingly. If he reverts back to what he was, the Seahawks could move on without too much pain. I think it’s hard to look at Geno’s whole career and think he’s worth $30 mil a year, but what if he does ball out next year and leads this team to a playoff win or more? Do we then feel differently about 2024/25 and paying him that $30 mil/yr salary?

    Lots of questions I guess…and I am in no way saying this is what should happen. I am firmly in the camp that we should use that #5 pick on a QB if one of them is there. We just don’t get that opportunity very often! It just sounds like the Seahawks are going to pay Geno one way or the other…I just can’t imagine they are going to back up the Brinks truck for Geno when they wouldn’t do it for Russell!

    • Lord Snow

      Seahawks are going to pay Gino one way or the other…
      Then Schneider needs to be removed as GM. If he continues this ridiculous habit of negotiating against himself he needs to be gone

      • Big Mike

        Carroll too, not just Schneider

  27. Ishmael

    $40 million for Geno is so laughably stupid that anyone who signs off on that should be fired on the spot. I’d maybe offer $40 mil for two years at the absolute most.

    That sort of contract is how you end up in the middle of nowhere forever. Cut Adams, Diggs, don’t do anything stupid with Geno and let’s return to behaving like a vaguely professional organisation please.

  28. ac

    On the Seahawks side, I reckon there’s a lot of interest in maintaining league-wide belief that Geno will resign/be resigned by the team. The Seahawks can hide their possible intentions of drafting a QB at 5 and potentially limit other suitors that wish to jump ahead of them. In the case they aren’t planning on drafting a QB at 5 (or the right one doesn’t fall to them) then they can be the ones to field calls from other teams that want to move up.

    Basically, if the Seahawks DO have serious interest in drafting a QB at 5 (or in the first round entirely) then they should hide their hand… and even go as far as resigning Smith as a bridge, yes, but also to feint their intentions on draft day. In that case – I’d say they are choosing to play the risk game with their cap space (signing Geno at 30ish/yr) rather than with draft assets (spending valuable capital to move up from 5). Of course they could stick at 5 and pick Anthony Richardson who will more than likely be available, but I’m personally not convinced he’s worth it there.

    • PJ in Seattle

      I agree it would be better trade back and snag Richardson later. Problem is, he’s just as likely to go at 6, 7, or 8 so don’t know that you can do that unless you’re fine with not getting him.

      If Schneider believes in his ceiling, he would happily phone that pick in at #5.

      I think Richardson is going to wow people during testing and interviews. Maybe I’m wrong and he gets some stink on him that causes him to drop. Once the FA QB carousel settles this could be a completely different conversation, but it’s fun to prognosticate during this dead zone. Some mocks that have Richardson there for us at #20 already seem ludicrous to me.

  29. KD

    When you said that there is desperation at the QB position, that just sums up the entire reason to go QBotF right there. A lot of teams are desperate. Yes! The Seahawks are in a position where they don’t have to be. Simple. As. That.

  30. Hawkhawk

    Let Geno shop around…

  31. Old but Slow

    It seems logical to me that JS is looking at this as a big decision in regards to his career. Signing Geno to a large contract while skipping taking a top QB could be a huge gamble that would be difficult to justify if it goes wrong (as in Geno face plants, and a QB we could have had does well). On the other hand, not paying Geno big bucks while signing a QB at #5, would be more understandable and defensible if the opposite happens.

    • BobbyK

      We find out soon if Pete Carroll still has all the power and signs Smiff.

      Or we find out if the Seahawks give a sh!t about having a long-term vision, with a coach older than most of our dead grandparents (at least my age)…

      If Schneider is in charge, he signs Lock and drafts a QB at 5 in all probability to give up hope a few years from now.

      If Carroll is still in 100% charge, we all know we’re doomed for more of Smiff and hating our lives (if we’re realistic) for another fall.

      • Big Mike

        I won’t hate my life, I’ll just give less of a shit than I have for a very long time.

        • BobbyK

          Yes. Unfortunately.

          I hated this past season more than I have in a decade and it was because I knew there was a predetermined outcome. I was right.

  32. DJ 1/2 way

    While I am not a football expert like many who comment here, I am surprised that so many here are still trying to figure out a 3 year contract for Geno at something over $20,000,000 a year. Are you reading what Rob is writing? Did you watch all the Seahawks games this year? Have you paid attention to the impact of bad contracts in the last ten years?

    I like Robs plan with Drew Lock and a rookie QB at #5. It was at least a close competion between Geno and Drew last year. Drew is familiar with the system and players, and could be set aside if (hopefully) Richardson seems ready or the Hawks are out of it at some point in the season.

    Oh, and Pay Drew $3.5 million. The exact contract Geno had.

    It is a multiyear recovery so trying to compete next year is just like trying to compete in 2022. Maybe you make a watered down playoffs with a participation trophy that costs you ten spot in the draft in all seven rounds!

    Most seem panicked about drafting defense. I say if the rookie qb is going to see some playing time then get a couple interior OL and a 3rd receiver. Imagine the running game with Mayer or Jones and Richardson reminding viewers of Steve McNair. Now that is something I can get excited for!

    • Peter

      There’s cha with Cap and rob with player evaluations and then a bunch of goofs😀. No experts.

      I will say on defense I’m not worried. In fact I hope they attack the defense in the second round and maybe find some unique value in the third.

      My problem is fans that think a dlinemen at say five is going to fix this when the best ones often take 3-4 years to really get going.

      If they sign Geno for big money and go all defense there’s a real chance that the defense isn’t firing for 2-4 years. Where if they save money on Geno and invest in good quality FA’s, draft some defense, some offense, and get a rookie qb everything you could be coming together at the right time.

    • J matson

      Well stated DJ.

  33. Justaguy

    I think we need to focus a little more on Anthony Richardson

  34. QAgrizzly

    Would a trade down from say 5 to 9 realistically net a 2024 first plus possibly a second this year? I have no idea. The reason I ask in relation to this thread is the often-discussed possibility of draft capital in 24 to trade up for QB. It would seem that such a scenario would have to come into Schnieder’s calculations to some degree when weighing a contract offer to Smith.

    • 805Hawk

      What happens when you end up with picks in the late teens or twenties. Now you have to give up future firsts. And you don’t know what the QB class will really be like. You’ve got the 5th pick now, an amazing gift. Use it and don’t gamble on next year.

      • Peter

        You’re talking my language.

        Here ya go panthers you can have Stroud.

        Great how bout we go 9-8 in a weak division and give you pick 20-22 in 2024?

        Sounds good.

        Then next year say bo nix, penix, rattler, williams are all super great and we want one of them or someone else (tvd?) We get to blow our firsts plus maybe even something else to get a qb?

    • Rob Staton

      Please, can we just stop this cycle of ‘next years QB class is better’

      • Roy Batty

        But the stats…oh the stats…

        How many times do we have to hear about the “generational talent” with massive stats to bolster his resume? Stats that have no real meaning until you deep dive into them. Air Raid offense? Fun to watch, sometimes, but doesn’t translate. Gawdy stats, but meaningless in a pro system.

        And I am so tired of hearing about Williams or Penix, because at the end of the 2023 season I’m certain we will hear about some other QB with gawdy stats who should be the Hawks target in 2024.

        • Peter

          Re: Williams. I feel like I’m on an island slightly concerned that Reilly is the more the reason for him than the other way around.

          Generational talent is getting to be the most over used football term. How can there be generational talent every year? Even in sports terms a generational talent should seem like a 10 span.

          Burrows, Allen, herbert, mahomes, Lawrence. All generational talents? Seems like Mahomes so far is the only one who is the generational talent of the bunch.

  35. Simo

    I don’t think the Hawks go anywhere near $30m/yr for Geno. JS is on record saying they have a number in mind, and he won’t go past it.

    They are in a good position because there’s a pretty decent chance of drafting one of the QB’s this year, thus there’s no reason to overpay Geno. Something like 3yr for $50m seems fair!

    • Lord Snow

      Remember the old saying when two sales people meet Who is the winner? The one who doesn’t want anything from the other. I hope John realizes he really doesn’t need a 33-year-old average and lucky quarterback. That quarterback needs him. The fans outside of this blog don’t understand that but all we need is John to understand it. With Pete, who knows. He talks out of all sides of his mouth. I’m just wondering how you can say you have two starting quarterbacks and talk up drew lock and then have this potential to pay the other guy $30 million a year. Sounds like Pete was spouting BS when it comes to Drew lock, but I gave up a long time ago listening to him.

      • Peter

        Low key a great point.

        If you have two #1’s then problem solved you don’t need the 30 plus million one.

        Unless you were just bs-ing all along.

  36. Old but Slow

    What I find most frustrating about this discussion, is that this is the most attractive QB draft class I can remember in a while. Coupled with our rare high pick, it is baffling to me that it is even a question.

    And you can add to that the appearance that there isn’t much other talent in the top 10 compared to most years.

    • bmseattle

      This is exactly right.
      It’d be something else, if there was a perceived, can’t miss DL.
      Even then, I’d be hard pressed to pass up on the QB.
      But everything points to drafting a QB at #5 for us… regardless of the decision on Geno.

      • Elmer

        Exactly right, unless all 4 QB’s magically go in the top 4 and all of Anderson, Carter, and Wilson fall to us at #5. Even then, not sure that the FO sees any of them as sure things.

        • Peter

          Exactly. Unless all four go 1-4 why is drafting a qb a conversation?

          Separate it from the geno talk.

          The first top five pick in forever and we still have another first rounder? I can’t fathom why people are over thinking this so much this year.

    • Big Mike

      You may be old, but you ain’t slow. Good post man.

  37. Ryan purcell

    There’s a lot of ways to be successful. The fact that Geno played well is undeniable. But so did Purdy. For next to nothing. I could see team Geno pricing themselves out of the market. I think a two or three year deal with major escalator clauses would make sense for both parties.

    • Rob Staton

      But they don’t want that

      They’re talking about 40m

      And what’s his base average? Because even if you’re paying him 25m (which some have now concluded is too low and unrealistic) that’s still way too much for a bridge

      • Ryan Purcell

        40 million? Agree. No way. I think 18 with escalator clauses seems doable. Give him a 2 year deal. If he plays well he can have another shot at another contract with more of a track record.

  38. Jabroni-DC

    The evidence your Honor,

    Sept 18, 2022
    San Francisco 27, Seattle 7
    We got our ass kicked!!!

    Dec 15, 2022
    San Francisco 21, Seattle 13
    It wasn’t that close. We got our ass kicked!!!

    Dec 24, 2022
    Kansas City 24, Seattle 10
    KC tried hard to keep us in the game for a while but couldn’t. We got our ass kicked!!!

    Jan 14, 2023 Playoffs? Playoffs?!?!?
    San Francisco 41, Seattle 23
    After a gutsy, mistake free 1st half we came back to Earth…and got our ass kicked!!!

    The verdict?
    We played 2 contenders last season & without any doubt we we’re completely outclassed. Point being that we are AT LEAST 2 stellar off seasons away from contending for a championship. A lot has to go right & we can’t afford any more big money mistakes. Play the long game to win it all.

    If you ain’t 1st, you’re last!

    –Reece Bobby

    Truth in the NFL.

    • Big Mike

      And don’t forget we lost all 4 games to the absolutely pathetic NFC South

      • DC1234

        Next year might be tougher. Playing AFC North and NFC East. And a second Place schedule compared to fourth place this year.

        I dont see the seahawks winning 9 games next year

    • BobbyK

      Don’t forget on Sept 18 the Seahawks scored zero offensive points that game.

      Great/true post!

  39. 805Hawk

    Great article, Rob. You put my thoughts and frustrations with this situation perfectly. I’d love to force feed this article to all Seahawks fans. However, as I saw on Twitter when you linked this article, the reaction would be blind faith to King Geno and not actually absorbing a single word you wrote. The next month or so is going to be torturous.

  40. Denver Hawker

    I’m clutching my pearls that JS is fully in charge.

    Last years’ draft was sensational. It was also the first year that we learned JS took back control and went BPA. Knowing how often JS has scouted QBs and considering what was acquired in the Russ trade, I’m convinced there is absolutely zero chance we don’t draft a QB this year.

    I suspect the plan was to use draft capital to trade up for one, but we lucked in to #5. I think since the trade was made, JS wanted to get a QB in this draft class and Geno changes nothing.

    I agree that Geno’s performance warrants some soft of contract; insurance if you’d rather. But the fact he still remains unsigned is indicative of JS’s discipline in the matter. I’d wager he has a number in mind and leverage. Fans might thing otherwise, but I think JS is taking a QB on Day 1 no matter what, so he isn’t going to overpay for insurance. As bad as I think Drew Lock truly is, we’re better off signing him for peanuts than paying Geno even $30MM.

    I agree with Rob that Geno is likely to find a cold market. There is absolutely zero discussion in the fansphere about paying Geno outside Seattle fan base. I’d wager further that all this speculation we hear about is 100% related to Seahawks fans’ exceptionalism regarding our players. We tend to overvalue our assets compared to the national market. I wouldn’t blame Geno for testing the market though- afterall, this might be the most leverage he’s ever and will have in the NFL to maximize guaranteed money.

    I’m prepared to let Geno walk for $30MM and suspect JS is as well. This is his first Top 5 pick and might be his last. He’s not wasting it on the 3rd best defensive player.

    • Big Mike

      This is also what I am very very hopeful is the case.

    • Dominic

      If the plan was to trade up for a QB then having the 5 already is a pretty good step towards still trading up for a QB, if Schneider wants any of the top 3 rather than Richardson. I’m down with Richardson though. We have the ammo to carry out the plan. My question is, if it is the plan, when would Schneider execute it? how close to the draft/during the draft?

      • Denver Hawker

        I’ve never been an NFL GM, but I’d expect any team that has a player in mind to trade up to will pick up the phone to other GMs and learn the asking price. Doubt much of anything is done before combine and pro days. The Niners traded up on March 26 to ultimately select Trey Lance. Any team trading back will want a bidding war to maximize value.

        Right now, I think they can sit tight at 5 and see how the chips fall, especially since there are a lot of needs still to fill, but they certainly have the draft capital to make the trade if he really likes one of the QBs over the rest.

  41. Sam

    If I am John Schneider, I would let him test his market and ask him to bring back his best offer. 30m would be a disaster, forget 40m. They’re not winning a SB next year even with Geno. I would take risk and try to squeeze as much as possible for me to set it up for 2024-2025.

    • Mick

      If I’m John Schneider, I would make a deal with Drew Lock or with another cheap vet before I make a deal with Geno.

      • Osprey

        Exactly, hedge the bet now. Unless you land Levis, your Rookie is likely sitting some part of year one and you’ll need a solid back up even if you sign Geno.

        • Peter

          I think Young could actually come in right away. He and Levis. But generally agree about the others.

  42. Forrest

    Great post, Rob! I’m hoping one of the four teams that pick ahead of us sign Geno (and that he gets a huge contract so we can get a compensatory 3rd rounder).

  43. Hojo

    I agree 100% with your take Rob. It’s actually kinda crazy that someone in a GM position wouldn’t agree with the strategy to invest in a high potential QB on a rookie contract vs a high priced average QB. Only a GM operating out of fear for their job, incompetence or powerlessness would accept that trade off. I think this off-season will inform us pretty clearly if JS is now calling the shots or if it’s Pete. I’m an optimist, so I’m going to hypothesize that Pete’s power grew steadily over the years until last offseason and now JS is in control of player personnel and strategy.

  44. Griffin

    I personally do not understand why any offer would start above the franchise tag price of $32million/year. Especially for a QB like Geno who had a good first half and a bad second half that was close to his career norms…which is as a backup.

    Additionally, as he’s 32 now, and will be 33 next season, even if they were to franchise him two years in a row they’d be paying him for his year 33 and 34 seasons…and that would be for a total of $32million + $38.4 million…and the hawks can do that without negotiating at all.

    So even if they think the first half of last season was indicative of his real skill/talent level, why would they bid against themselves to sign Geno to a longer term contract, for more money, that would get them into his age 35 season?

    Seems bananas to me.

    • Geoff u

      That’s a great point. 32.4 million is the ceiling. Still more than I’d pay, but nothing over that should be even entertained.

  45. Paul

    Let’s take a deep breath.

    Just because Dave Wyman says that “for whatever reason” he thinks Geno Smith wants $40M/yr doesn’t normalize $30M. Any half-competent executive in any business will have set a cost above which he/she will walk away from the deal. Geno’s agent thinks the same way from the other side of the coin: there’s a number below which he believes his client is better off testing the free agent waters. Both sides might have to push boundaries to find a middle ground; both sides recognize that finding a middle ground might be impossible.

    Some things to keep in mind:

    * The Seahawks place secondary importance on whatever the “market” has to say

    * The Seahawks prefer to re-signing their own FAs, but not at any cost

    * The QB bridge can stretch an awful long way—just ask the Bears, whose bridge goes back to the 1940s

    * Of the four top QBs in the 2023, at least one will be an outright bust, a couple will tool around the QB middle class, and maybe one will be good enough to take a team to the Super Bowl. Maybe I’m wrong, but I would like to know of the draft that yielded four SB QBs

    To me, it’s nuts to pay Geno 30M/yr—that’s the road to Kirk Cousins perdition. But let’s not kid ourselves: the Hawks could spend a generation looking for something better—long past my and and a lot of other shelf lives. This is not an easy call.

    • KennyBadger

      I was dumbfounded by $30m being proposed so hearing $40m almost gave me a concussion from facepalming so hard.

      I don’t disagree with some of the points you make Paul but the chance you will find the qb that puts you in contention is increased by nature of having the #5 pick. Sure history will tell you that at least 1 of the 4 qbs will be a bust but history also shows that rookie qb deals can create a path to success.

      Geno is a known quantity and I don’t believe that quantity puts Seattle beyond perpetual 9-8. I’d rather take the chance on one of these rookies and use the savings to fill out the roster. Not that geno can’t be a part of that but anything above $15-20m is a complete waste of resources IMO.

    • Rob Staton

      Let’s take a deep breath.

      Just because Dave Wyman says that “for whatever reason” he thinks Geno Smith wants $40M/yr doesn’t normalize $30M. Any half-competent executive in any business will have set a cost above which he/she will walk away from the deal. Geno’s agent thinks the same way from the other side of the coin: there’s a number below which he believes his client is better off testing the free agent waters. Both sides might have to push boundaries to find a middle ground; both sides recognize that finding a middle ground might be impossible.

      You’ve missed the point. It’s not about normalising $30m in contract talks. It’s normalising it within the media and fan discussion.

    • Cysco

      You’re giving the Seahawks a lot of credit with those bullet points. This is the same team that recently gave Diggs and Adams contracts that are deserving of a serious “WTF?”. If anything, they have shown that they actually aren’t amazing at managing their cap space and are definitely not keen to be creative with their cap.

      RE: this year’s QB class. Jalen Hurts is in the Super Bowl tomorrow. Jalen Hurts is not a star. He falls squarely in you “tool around in the QB middle class”. Only difference is he’s on a cheap rookie deal. That’s the entire point of this article. If you strike gold and find the next Burrows or Mahomes, then awesome. If not, well you at least have an “average” guy for far cheaper than paying Geno.

    • Big Mike

      “The Seahawks prefer to re-signing their own FAs, but not at any cost”

      Adams and Diggs and Dissley and, and, and…………..not only is this not true, they actually way too often overspend on their own FAs.

      • Peter

        Like uncle Will but one day I’d love to know the team(s) that were gunning for a near perennially injured blocking TE with solid but not remarkable catching stats.

    • DC1234

      This is a easy call. By your logic, out of the 4 qb: 1. Bust 2,3. Middle class. 4. Superbowl maybe

      I rather the seahawks go draft a qb. If he becomes a middle class qb, thats Geno’s level. And he is in a rookie contract. You save so much money in the cap for 4 years.

      You have 25% chance of bust. And a 25% chance of potential superbowl winner.

      I will take that riak 100/100

  46. Cysco

    What truly drives my nuts is the constant “Geno DESERVES _____”

    I only wish the world worked that way. How great would it be if we all got what we deserve!?

    • Peter

      Deserves? I don’t like that but that maybe implies that his play is and will be always at or above a certain level.

      I expect Woolen will “deserve,” a big old contract. Age + play + most likely, I hope, continued excellence from him.

      The word I like less is “reward,” or “rewarded.” That one is even worse for team building.

      • Hawkdawg

        And we’ve done that before, as I recall. Shaun Alexander comes to mind, at minimum…

        • Big Mike

          Yeah he got paid and quit caring for the most part didn’t he? And Ruskell gave him too much for too long because he likely bowed to fan expectations, at least in part.

  47. Hebegbs

    I’m already so tired of listening to the National media about off-season football topics including FA. They just make stuff up in the hope of getting people to tune in. I’m bored. The only topics I’ve enjoyed is here on this blog. The realism that Rob discusses that will truly move this team forward in a positive direction where they could be really good again in 2-3 years.

    At this point I’m convinced that the best thing that could happen for the Hawks long term, and really not so far away, is to let Geno walk. Sign Lock to 1 year. Draft QB at 5. Nail the 2023 draft similarly to 2022 (easier said than done but they do have great draft capital outside of pick 5)

    The over payment of mid-tier NFL QB’s seems to be a successful plan to be a .500 team, lose in round one of the playoffs handily, draft annually at 20 and go nowhere. Examples are all over the league as Rob has pointed out.

    I hope someone else pays Geno and I wish him good luck. I strongly feel paying him is going to quickly shut down any chance of a major step forward for this young core. 20 mm feels like the boom/bust, stay or let him walk # in my view.

  48. Spectator

    If a team is really interested in signing Geno, and we gave that at the combine. And hawks don’t want to sign geno, could we then do the tag and trade option? In that scenario geno wouldn’t be as “run in to sign” as we originally thought, and could allow us to get something for him.

    • Lord Snow

      It’s easier just to say go out and set a market and then see if we’ll match. If you try to squeeze water out of a rock with this guy you might end up getting stuck with the rock.

  49. Turnagaintide

    100% agreed. No way we should pay Geno anywhere near that. Roll the dice we can get a rookie at #5 and use that money on the defensive!

  50. diehard82

    Negotiations hinge on leverage. Carroll has said he believed we had two starting caliber QB’s in Lock and Smith. It was tight competition in training camp, until Lock became ill or tested Covid positive which sidelined him for a couple weeks. So, create leverage. Sign Lock to a 2 yr deal similar to Geno’s deal last year. Then negotiate with Geno’s agent.

    And for goodness sake, draft a QB at 5, and then start drafting a developmental QB at least every 2 years so you always have someone new in the pipeline. With 16-20 picks every 2 years, you can’t afford not to spend one on QB.

  51. bmseattle

    Apparently, Pete Carroll “believed” in Geno before the season… calling him a starting QB…
    Yet, despite that “belief”, the signed him to a 1 year deal.

    They had every opportunity to sign him to a 2 or 3 year deal last off season, “just in case” he had a good year.
    But they didn’t want to.

    So, as Rob has deduced all along, the “plan” was to move on from Geno, and go cheap at QB for 2023.

    All other signings and roster decisions were made with that plan in mind.

    They better not divert from that plan because of a decent to good season by Geno… or (god forbid) because of fan/media pressure.

    You don’t completely blow up the plan for your franchise because of Geno Smith.

    • Big Mike

      This X1000
      killing it as always man

    • Lord Snow

      This Pete believed in Gino but only signed him to a one-year contract is never talked about enough. We’ve lived through the revisionist history that Russell was only successful because of Pete. Or the laughable one where if only Gino was our quarterback all these years we would have had two or three Super Bowls instead of just one.

      John Schneider better be in control of this draft

    • Matt

      I’ll go a different direction here…if Pete knew this, he should be fired for incompetent handling of this situation.

  52. BoiseSeahawk

    Lots of options to avoid overpaying at QB:

    1. Take Levis, Stroud, Anderson or Carter at 5…otherwise trade back and get Richardson.

    2. Take Richardson, Mayer, or Kancey at 20…otherwise trade back and get Hooker in the late 2nd.

    3. If all QBs are taken (Levis, Stroud, Richardson, Hooker) then roll with Lock and draft Haener, DTR or McCall in the later rounds.


    • BK26

      McCall went back to college.

      If they go the route of #3 at all, I don’t know if the season will be watchable. That could be what gets Pete fired.

      • BoiseSeahawk

        Ye of little faith overpays…. ye quarterback…

        Thy offensive scheme and thy staff they comfort me.

  53. Sea Mode

    Mel at the end 🤣

  54. Bballin

    This reminds me of the jadeveon clowney discussions a couple years ago where fans said he should be the highest defensive player in the nfl. When in reality he was offered 14/year

    I think geno gets more of a teddy bridgewater 3/66 deal, maybe a little more now that it’s a couple years later. And I think that would be reasonable.

  55. Blitzy the Clown

    Not directly on point (how much is Geno worth). But it’s reassuring to know Joe Fann sees the big picture.

    @Camorooni: If you’re Seahawks GM and Geno has been extended for 3 years already but a top QB is avaialble at No. 5, what do you do?

    I love this hypothetical. And I think you absolutely still take a quarterback at No. 5 even if Geno Smith is locked up*.

    *This of course assumes that John Schneider and Co. grade said quarterback as a prospect worthy of being taken with a top-five pick.

    If the assumption is that Seattle bottomed out in 2022 and things will get better from here, then this will be the team’s only chance at drafting in the top five. I think it would be foolish to pass on a quarterback who you grade to be a potential franchise guy.

  56. Frank

    I love the idea of a Richardson, Stroud or Hooker (assuming Levi’s and Young are gone) learning behind Geno for 1 year or even the first half of a season, but not at 30 or 40 million. The league seems to be trending away from paying average QBs top dollar, the Seahawks fans base in particular is probably less fear driven than most given the top 5 pick and the fact the world didn’t fall apart when RW left town. Geno is a great guy, and a functional NFL QB but still below the line that should stop you looking for an upgrade. I can’t possibly agree more that anything over 20 is crazy with the caveat that unless a tag and trade situation presents itself. I’d be really curious how high of pick if any a Bucs, Panthers, Raiders or Jets might offer, and how much draft capital or player trade would make the cap hit worth it?

  57. Gross MaToast

    Geno in Tampa works for me.

    Geno in DC works for me.

    Geno and the Raiders – big thumbs up.

    Geno and Houston – fireworks.

    Geno and the Saints is a nice fit.

    In the old days of baseball, a guy making like $26,000 for the year would hit .390 with 37 home runs, 170 RBI, 39 stolen bases and play gold glove defense and for the next season, the team owner would offer $24,000 for the upcoming season because there was no way the player would match those numbers again. Why pay more for less??? I’m looking at you, Connie Mack.

    I’m not saying that Geno should be paid less, because he probably won’t replicate the numbers from 2022 and – well, actually I am saying that, but I’d be a terrible GM.

    I don’t blame Geno for trying to cash in – this is his last shot at brand new Rolls Royce money, so best of luck in the hunt, but let one of the above teams ride the Geno Train in 2023. If he’s great, I can live with the mistake as CJ Stroud takes over for the Seahawks.

    • AlaskaHawk

      I don’t blame Geno for trying to cash in either as this will probably be his last pay day.

      However- there are at least 4 veterans shopping around for a new team
      There is zero buzz about Geno Smith. No one is going to pay a high price for him.

      He has played okay but not to a high enough standard to make the playoffs. Granted the defense sucked.

      The team needs at least another year to clear out the cap space from Adams, Diggs and other bad contracts. They simply can’t afford a high QB contract, they can’t even afford a moderate contract. They just have too many holes to fill. On defense alone I could list 6 positions which need to be filled. Offense, another 4 positions. They need the money for veterans.

      The Seahawks could sign Lock now and probably will get a rookie quarterback. Why do they need Geno Smith?

      All of that says to me that if they want him they should go in below 10 million. Yes I’m a cheapskate, but that doesn’t negate the damage that will be done to the cap if they go higher.

  58. cha

    I sincerely hope they don’t sign or tag Geno before the new league year opens.

    There are so many options besides Geno the market could be oversaturated:

    Jimmy G

    And then there are the potential cuts of Mariota, Winston, Wentz and Tannehill.

    Lamar Jackson and Aaron Rodgers might be available in trade.

    This year there could be a big market correction at the position.

    A lot of it could start if teams do not rush to sign one of these guys at the earliest possible time.

    • AlaskaHawk

      Even more quarterbacks on the market than I thought. There will be incredible discounts on most of those names.

    • Sean-O

      Exactly, cha! It will be a buyer’s market for middle-of-the-road, bridge QBs. It does sound like SEA has a number in mind so hopefully, they stick to it. I’d bet it’s higher than a lot of us are comfortable with, honestly.

      Out of your list of who is actually a FA, you’d have to think Carr & Jimmy G are likely to command more than the others though.

    • Steve Nelsen

      And with 4 premium rookie QBs in the draft too. This is about as much of a buyer’s market at the QB as we have seen in a long time. That being said, the salary cap always goes up and QBs are always in demand. Jimmy G and Carr are looking for a contract of $30M+ this year. Is a 32-year-old Geno going to be cheaper than a 32-year-old Garoppolo?

      I started the off-season thinking that signing Geno as a bridge and drafting a rookie was the best plan. But, if Geno is too expensive, then you get an affordable bridge and draft a rookie.

    • jed

      Plus Daniel Jones. Quite a group.

      Aaron/Lamar as high cost, reward, risk.

      4 rookies with high upside & draft capital cost.

      Carr, Geno, Tannehill, Jimmy G, Jones, as average-ish performance looking for biggish money.

      The rest as back-ups or below average starters. Maybe a couple with some Geno-like upside where history says it’s probably not going to happen.

  59. Cover 12

    Sunday we will find out if the current BIG contract talent (Mahomes) VS the current rookie contract talent (Hurts) with a more complete team will be on the victory podium.

    I am pulling for Philly simply because I have been a proponent of the ‘rookie contract’ for the QB since Before Russell got his second deal. The evolution of spending has me expanding my rookie contract to at least Half of the following ‘premium’ positions:
    1) Starter QB
    2) 2x Starter WRs
    3) LT
    4) 2x Edge
    5) 2x CB
    Plus a couple of other positions manned by ‘elite’ players with ‘elite’ contracts.

    This leaves 8-10 elite player positions of which a team can only afford to pay out 4-5 elite contracts. Maybe 6 tops. There MUST be a regular rotation of draft picks worked into these premium positions to keep from paying too many elite contracts.

    Yes, Geno is a worthy keep – IF he can be had on an incentive-filled contract that the team can move on from (or trade out of) down the road. Using the Derek Carr situation in which the Raiders will no doubt have to cut because No team will trade for that contract…

    After the last off-season in which all of the high-profile QB movement ended up being a big loss for the acquiring teams. Yes – you speak the truth!

    • Geoff u

      I actually disagree entirely with this current narrative. It isn’t VS or either or. These are the top two teams in the NFL, and both these avenues are a complete success that got them to the Super Bowl. The only real narrative here is get a franchise QB, full stop. Yes, preferably on a rookie deal, but if you get a Manning, Brady, Burrow, or Mahomes you’ve given yourself the best odds at a ring no matter what shape the rest of the team is in.

  60. Nano

    Hey Rob,

    Great stuff, as always. Thank you.

    I hope they have the same approach. And I hope John is full-on in charge of this. Like you, I’m sensing he was with the draft last year.

    The only option that makes sense is letting him test the market.

    I think it’d probably result in him re-signing on either a short-term (~2yrs), high-guarantee, but comparably affordable, contract; or a longer contract with incredible incentives and a good out after a couple of years.

  61. Forrest

    Could the Seahawks trade up to #1 and draft Levis???

    I think Indy is the favorite to trade up with the Bears with Levis as their target. But, the Seahawks have the most draft capital and could beat any offer, if they really want Levis.

    I think the price would be #5, #20 and next year’s first. You could afford to add Hargrave, Payne or Tomlinson and an ILB in free agency, use your 2nd round picks on Mauch & Skinner and your 3rd and 4th on a Center and WR3/TE, maybe rounding out the draft with a RB and a BPA or two. Then, you’d still have a lot to spend in free agency next year to make up for the lack of a 1st.

    • Geoff u

      Sitting at #5, we’ll hopefully never be in this position again, I think we need to do whatever it takes to get a top QB. And this will depend on how the teams ranks them. If they see one or two clearly above the rest, trade up. If they grade all 4 about the same, sit tight and pick him. Just don’t get cute and get a damn franchise QB. The only way we’re picking this high again is if something has gone horribly wrong, like we sign geno, he sucks or gets hurt, and we wasted a year and cap space. And that’s best case scenario. Worst case is don’t go qb, sogn geno, and waste year after year in medocricy waiting for a Mahomes to fall to us.

    • UkAlex6674

      I proposed this on a FB fan site and got slated. But why the hell not?

      • Geoff u

        Before this year I always assumed the plan was to have two mid/late first round picks with which we’d package to move up and draft one of thse QBs. Thanks to Denver we are in a far better position than I’d thought possible. Geno having a good year shouldnt have changed this plan. If the FO honestly rates Geno higher than the franchise potential (and price) of these 4 QBs, it’s time to truly start over with this FO.

  62. Geoff u

    I’m kinda over Geno at this point and don’t even want him for 20 mil, considering one (or two) of those defenders you could get. I’m great full for his comeback and resurgance, but at least, AT THE VERY LEAST, let him test FA. No one’s gonna offer him jack. If they do, awesome. Geno gets what he deserves (what the market gave him) and I hope he continues to do well.

    We don’t need a bridge QB either. If this team really is qb friendly, let the rookie play and get his lumps in. Finish the oline and get another RB and pound it plus play action. Nothing better than on the job training. Did Trevor Lawrence’s first year kill him? What about trey Lance/Purdy? Justin Fields? As long as they have a good support structure, they’ll be fine. Qbs don’t get ruined, they get exposed, and better to find out sooner than later (Rosen).

  63. Raybones

    Great stuff once again Rob. The assignment is simple. Assemble enough talent to compete and ultimately win the Super Bowl. Trading RW for a boat load of picks was only one part of the recipe. The second and equally important part was to establish enough cap flexibility to pursue the best available talent in free agency. So many teams are being forced to shed talent to pay for middle of the road QB play that Seattle is in a very advantageous position at this moment. And having the unexpected benefit of the disastrous year the Broncos experienced giving them a top 5 pick is simply too valuable to waste. Take whichever of the top 4 QBs falls to them. Period. Sign Jacoby Brisset to a bridge contract in the 10$ million dollar range to act as a mentor. Sign Deron Payne. Draft BP at 20, 37 and 51 no matter what position that player plays. Concentrate of acquiring unique and rare skills and fill the roster with that type of player. Signing Geno to a roster crippling contract to reward him for exceeding expectations during an obvious rebuilding process is quite simply, bad management. My two cents.

  64. Stuart

    Well said!

  65. Stuart

    If PCJS blunder this treasure trove we have, i am going to start following another team until they are both are gone.

    90% of the Seattle media is fine with paying Geno over $30M a season for 3-4 years.

    1st half Geno was sensational and 2nd half Geno was typical Geno.

    All one needs to do is see how he played in the playoffs. Mr. Turnover.

    Sign Drew Lock for $7M with incentives and it needs to be for 3 years with a cheap out in year 3., AND DRAFT A QB AT 5!

  66. McZ

    According to Spotrac, Geno’s market value is $39.3m, which is only a million and change below Lamar Jackson.

    He is getting compared to Derek Carr, Kirk Cousins, Matt Ryan and Matt Stafford. It has to be enticing to PC to “settle” the QB position short term, ie. for the rest of his contract, and then pour draft resources into the defense (which can even mean trading picks for a player under contract).

    Can JS resist
    – the selling point of “creating a contender” (which will be PCs main PoV, and which the media doesn’t seem to disagree with)?
    – the majority of the fanbase being avid Geno supporters?
    – the fact that there is not a QB on the roster?
    – the general impression that PC is retaking power over roster decisions?

    I fear, this won’t work out well.

    And if the shit hits the fan, remember: this is the result of starting a rebuild without comprehensively solving the HC situation first.

    • Rob Staton

      According to Spotrac, Geno’s market value is $39.3m, which is only a million and change below Lamar Jackson.

      Then Seattle should be preparing to let another team pay that

  67. Stuart

    JS to Geno-You played great last season and you have played your way into a big contract! We are proud of you and wish you nothing but the best.

    As the GM its my job to build our roster towards becoming a Super Bowl team but wr are are in more need than just a QB roster is full of holes and we are in a rebuilding

  68. Stuart

    That went out before it was ready.

    NO GENO-bottom line

  69. samprassultanofswat

    Someone posted that the Front Office thinks that our offense is QB friendly. Assuming that is true(and that is a big if). That gets me a little excited. That means the Hawks are NOT going to overpay at the QB position. BTW: Rob mentioned that Cincinnati paid 28mil. for Hendrickson/Reader. If somehow the Hawks could do that. Bring in two top veteran defensive linemen(on affordable deals) that would go a long ways to shoring up the defense.

    Geno Smith had an outstanding first 9 games. After those first 9 games he was slightly above average. In fact his interception totals could have been much higher. I don’t see how the Hawks can pay Geno Smith and bring in players to rebuild the defense. Especially the defensive line.

    I would be shocked if an NFL team paid $40mil per year for Geno Smith. K.J. Wright said the Hawks should pay Geno Smith $20mil per season. I know that would SHOCK most NFL fans. But that is where I think his value is at.

    I don’t look at Geno Smith as a long-term solution. I just don’t. And I don’t think the Hawks can win with Geno Smith in the short-term. So why bother?

    Geno Smith needs to find out his worth on the OPEN MARKET.

  70. joe

    Are we getting the Geno that led the team to a 6-3 record to start the season or a 3-5 record, with 7 ints, to end the season? I really don’t know. But I know I wouldn’t pay him much more than $15m a year with incentives. I mean, going 6 – 11 or 7 – 10 with 14 INTS is what Drew Lock will get us. I’d rather pay a top notch free defensive lineman and draft a QB at #5 than get saddled with an outrageous contract for a journeyman QB with half a good season under his belt in 10 years in the league.

  71. GrittyHawk

    Tannehill is such a great case study both in how a mediocre QB can put together a great statistical season and how one can quickly feel the effects of aging in their 30s.

    Age 32 season: 239 Y/G, 33 TD, 7 INT, 106.5 rating, 8.7 Adjusted Y/A
    Age 33 season: 220 Y/G, 21 TD. 14 INT, 89.6 rating, 6.6 Adjusted Y/A

  72. HOUSE

    I just read a prediction regarding Geno… 3yr/$110M with $87M guaranteed. What planet are people living on???

    • DAWGFan

      Anything about 3 years/$54 million with something like 36 million guaranteed is a drastic overpay and if Geno wants more than that then let walk. I would be surprised if any team offers much more than that. No need for Seattle to bid against themselves.

  73. Bertelli

    I am not a fan of this scenario, but let’s make the following unpopular assumption:

    The Hawks sign Geno to a 3-year deal worth $30m per year, with a low cap-hit that costs us $13 million in 2023. This would leave us with our “bridge” QB. (I think most of us would be okay with Geno in that role, even if we thought he was overpaid).

    OK, so you’re now sitting with Geno at QB for the next one or two years and we have limited salary space. What do you do now?

    Whether we like this scenario or not, it’s very possible this is their plan and I think it would be proactive to hear some discussion on what we might do if he DOES sign versus letting him walk. I can’t believe that JS/PC don’t have some type of plan in place if they intend to sign him, would be curious what you all think that might be…Thanks.

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