The New York Giants, Russell Wilson and ‘the plan’

The Seahawks, as we’ve been discussing, face a major dilemma this off-season. They have four key players all with only one year remaining on their contracts.

Russell Wilson, Frank Clark, Bobby Wagner, Jarran Reed.

Signing three of the quartet before the start of the 2019 season will be a challenge.

Wilson’s signature is the most important but also the most challenging to secure.

I sense he’s fully prepared to play on the franchise tag. It could even be his aim. The concept of Wilson betting on himself is hardly unrealistic. That’s his character — undying confidence and belief. He’s seen Kirk Cousins maximize his earning potential by backing himself using the tag. Wilson knows he’s guaranteed a massive salary for the next two years and then will become a free agent.

Such an approach would also avoid the inevitable situation of being the highest paid player for a matter of months before the next top quarterback gets paid even more. By playing on the tag, Wilson keeps up with the top salaries for two years before being able to go to the entire league and create a bidding frenzy that would dwarf the race to sign Cousins.

Wilson is a highly ambitious, highly motivated individual. I’m not trying to argue that he’s selfish or not interested in working with the Seahawks to remain in Seattle. I’m sure he’s very prepared to stay with the team for a full career. That’s where the true glory comes from — being a one-team man and having major success.

Yet Wilson is also cut from the same cloth as the Derek Jeter’s of this world. He will have major ambitions beyond football, including ownership and entrepreneurship. For Wilson, the sky’s the limit. He’s not going to let anything limit or restrict his ambition. And that includes, sadly for the Seahawks, his ability to earn.

I think some people see this situation as a simple ‘give him more than Aaron Rodgers and everything will be OK‘. I don’t think that’s the case at all. If this was about giving Wilson $35m a year (making him comfortably the top paid player in the league) — the deal probably gets done tomorrow. I sense Wilson has no interest in agreeing terms on a contract like that. He’ll not want to reduce his ambition to being paid marginally more than Rodgers — only to see Patrick Mahomes, Jared Goff and others blow his contract out of the water in the next 18 months.

He’s also unlike Matt Ryan and Aaron Rodgers. Neither, for example, were making appearances on Jimmy Fallon before their extensions were signed. Wilson was asked by Fallon about a trade to New York, about whether he’d expect to be the highest paid player in the league. Is any of this a coincidence? Of course not. Just like it wasn’t a coincidence when Colin Cowherd put out a sourced line that Wilson had interest in playing for the Giants, or when Adam Schefter noted there’d been ‘no talks on a new deal’ during the Super Bowl.

This is all part of the game. The negotiating game. One that intends to put pressure on the Seahawks and if they don’t come up with the goods — well there’s always the franchise tag or another team.

And here’s a reminder of what Wilson stands to earn if he’s minded to play on the franchise tag:

2020 — $30.43m
2021 — $36.4m
2022 — $52.43m

Those numbers are no doubt influencing what Wilson will ask for from the Seahawks (because this is what he’s guaranteed to earn currently). It also shows a clear pathway to the open market after two tags. The same route Cousins took before cashing in.

This is why the Seahawks continue to attend quarterback pro-days. This is why they will, undoubtedly, have to start thinking ahead. Because this is not a cut-and-dried, sort-it-out-in-due-course situation.

While ever it continues to drag on, doubts about the future will increase.

Let’s look at the aforementioned Giants.

At the moment they’re getting an absolute kicking in the media for trading Odell Beckham Jr. Everyone’s asking, ‘what’s the plan?’.

Dave Gettleman insists he has a plan, it’s simply yet to be fully revealed.

I think his plan involves acquiring a veteran QB. It might not be this off-season. It’d have to happen before the draft. It could be in 12 months time.

It could be Derek Carr. There’s been plenty of talk about the Raiders being willing to move on from Carr. It’s not unrealistic that at some point in the next year, the Raiders and Giants will work out a deal.

I also think Wilson is very much in play here. The Giants are a blue chip franchise. They’re expected to compete. I do think they’d be willing to make a major move to get one of the best quarterbacks in football.

Whoever it ends up being, I think it’s obvious for anyone who cares to think beyond ‘they traded Odell LOL‘ that the Giants will do something to address the QB position (probably in a more emphatic way than rolling the dice on Drew Lock or Dwayne Haskins).

If they do target Wilson, they have two options…

1. Use your collection of 2019 picks to make a strong offer for Wilson now, eliminating the negative publicity while clarifying what your ‘plan’ is

2. Use your 2019 stock to build up the roster before making your bold move for a quarterback in 12 months time

Any trade for Wilson would be costly. The Giants own the #6, #17 and #37 picks this year. All would likely have to go to the Seahawks if they wanted to make an offer now, plus probably their 2020 first rounder — if not more.

How would the Seahawks feel about that? If they believed there was very little chance to extend Wilson’s contract and that he was prepared to play on the tag, they’d have to consider it. The haul, along with their existing 2019 stock and a projected 11 picks currently in 2020 would give them a shot to build and remain competitive.

They could, for example, use the #6 and #17 picks to improve the D-line (Rashan Gary & Christian Wilkins maybe?). You could use #21 and #37 to possibly draft a young quarterback (Will Grier?) and a receiver (there are plenty of options).

In the meantime, perhaps they could persuade the Colts to trade Jacoby Brissett for a 2020 second rounder in order to acquire a veteran starter for this year?

(Apologies for the rosterbation but it’s a topic that warrants a discussion)

The entire make up of the team would be changed but it’s a plan of sorts. It’d also free up room to keep/extend Bobby Wagner, Frank Clark and Jarran Reed.

But you wouldn’t have Wilson. That’s the problem.

Of course, the Giants could simply pull a similar move themselves minus the Brissett trade. But they’d have a much harder time trading for Wilson or another quarterback in 12 months time with less draft stock. The fact they have two first round picks and #37 presents an opportunity now that won’t be there next year.

There may be a sense of urgency in New York. It’s at least possible they made the Beckham Jr. trade specifically to position themselves for a move this off-season. That would make the acquisition of an additional 2019 first round pick more plausible.

Let’s also consider this possibility — the Seahawks being equally comfortable themselves to allow Wilson to play on the tag, going year by year, without any long term commitment. That might, after all, be preferable compared to the kind of money it’d take to sign Wilson to an enormous extension worth millions more than Aaron Rodgers’ league-leading deal.

There’s a lot that could happen but it’d be naive to think a crossroads isn’t on the horizon, with several different directions the franchise and Wilson can go.

I don’t enjoy writing about this topic. I don’t want to see Wilson traded. I hope in the near future an extended contract is agreed. I simply believe this is a more serious situation than some people currently recognize. I do think the Giants have a plan that involves acquiring a veteran quarterback. And I do think the Seahawks have a big call to make coming up.

Often when there’s smoke there’s fire.

We’ve seen some smoke. Let’s see if there’s any fire.

Jordy Nelson is in Seattle for a visit

According to Adam Schefter the Seahawks are meeting with the former Oakland and Green Bay receiver. This isn’t a big surprise. John Schneider is a big fan of Nelson’s. He won’t count against the comp pick formula because he was cut by the Raiders.

Seattle needs to add a receiver so this would make some sense. They’re still very likely to draft a wide out this year but adding Nelson would allow them to focus their early picks on the strength of the draft (the defensive line). So far the Seahawks haven’t made any additions to the D-line despite losing Shamar Stephen. Dion Jordan also remains unsigned. This isn’t a coincidence. They use free agency to set up the roster in preparation for the draft. Once again, they’ll use the strength of the draft class to their advantage.

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  1. A, Chris

    I would love to see Jordy in Seattle, even just for a season. He’s a baller. Thanks for the regular updates and insight, Rob. I think you’re on to something. Cheers

  2. Rowlandice

    Yikes, the idea of trading RW makes me ill. Moreso than losing any of the other 3. BWagz has always been my favorite defender of this recent group. I’d have to wonder that RW trade might set up the next SB run in the next 2-3 years.IF they can find a competent QB this year or next.

  3. Rick

    I think that Wilson will be pushing for the tag and then free agency.
    I think that this summer might be the best time to get the most out of a deal.
    The amount of cap hit for the top quarterback I don’t see justifying his value.

    If I could get either of the two deals for Wilson I would make the trade.

    Raiders – #4, #24, #27, #35, #140
    Giants – #6, #17, #37, #108, 2020 #1 round

    • Ty the Guy

      I just don’t see any trade involving this year’s draft picks happening this close to the draft.

      Now, next year. If Russ is tagged, then I could see it being a possibility.

      • DCD2

        We’d have a lot less leverage trying to trade him on the tag. That being said, if we could get enough capital to move up and get Tua… that would be like rewinding the clock. He’s a 21 year old Russ.

        Apart from Murray, no one in this QB class gets me excited.

  4. Rik

    How about this idea?

    Seattle works a 3-way trade with the Giants and Cardinals. Russell Wilson to the Giants. The Giant’s picks #6, #17, and #37 to the Cardinals, and the Cardinal’s #1 pick and the Giant’s 2020 1st round pick to the Seahawks.

    Seahawks pick Kyler Murray #1 and the new era begins 🙂

    • Dream22

      Wow, is two first rounders, including #1 overall enough for Russell? I think the proposed trade works better for the Giants and Cardinals than the Seahawks.

    • CaptainJack

      Too complicated

  5. CaptainJack

    I’m afraid that without Russell this team would go to 7-9 dreck.

    I’d rather keep him and have less picks to work with

    • CaptainJack

      Another thing to consider:

      This team was never really great at drafting in round one under PCJS.

      Okung was good but not great.
      Carpenter was mediocre to good.
      Bruce Irvin was good but not great.
      Germaine Ifedi is mediocre to good.
      Rashaad Penny hasn’t shown anything yet.

      The only first round pick this team blew out of the water was Earl Thomas.

      I don’t know if I’d say any of the others lived up to their first round status. Solid players? Sure. But players that match their production are drafted in rounds 2 3 and later all the time.

      So would all those first round picks really be put to good use? I don’t know.

      • Rob Staton

        Could just as easily argue that they drafted a future hall of famer in Earl and that Okung, Bruce and Carp have been quality, long term NFL starters.

      • Kenny Sloth

        Yeah. Let’s trade Russ for 7 3rd round picks…. Then we’ll have 7 Russell Wilsons.

        • God of Thunder

          Haha, Canadian ‘Hawks fan and Rob Staton fan, just logging on to say lol to this draft strategy. Good one, got me laughing.

          As for trading RW, I don’t want it to happen because franchise QBs are as rare as hen’s teeth, but it may very well be that RW wants a big flashy East coast stage. And I’d rather maximize assets than face a ‘Skins – Kirk Cousins scenario.

    • Rob Staton

      What if you can’t keep him beyond 2021?

      Are you prepared to lose him for nothing but a R3 comp pick?

      Because the minute he takes his first franchise tag next year, the clock ticks on him becoming a free agent.

      • Ty the Guy

        That is the best question so far.

        Losing Earl, Sherm, Bennett, Kam, & Avril for a total of a 5th rd pick and a probable R3 comp hurts.

        When is the best time to deal if at all? This year if a team gets crazy with an offer, but then you are probably conceding this year. Or next year after you tag him? With the potential of losing Clark, Wags, or Reed along the way?

      • MyChestIsBeastMode

        One important caveat to consider is Pete Carrol and his tenure leading up to eventual retirement. It’s fair to say that each passing year we are working within no more than a 2 year window with Pete as our head coach. Obviously it could be more than that, but nobody can count on it as fact. I’m sure he’d love to coach until he’s 85 but life catches up with everyone. I can’t imagine him believing this team has all the pieces for a Superb Owl run only to ship away our most prized piece for future potential. Pete’s in the sunset of his career and likely in no way desires to do what 90% of NFL franchises do year-to-year — look for a franchise QB. This isn’t a quantifiable argument, but I imagine as long as Pete is with the Hawks, so too will Russel be. Of course, I may be wrong. Only the future knows.

        Though it would be a fun/wild/scary ride to see Rob’s “rosterbation” theories play out with a “game manager” QB and a once-again truly blistering defense stacked with young elite talent.

        • Rob Staton

          I don’t think Pete has any plans to retire and certainly won’t be making any short term decisions based on his own personal legacy.

        • Dale Roberts

          I agree with MyChestIsBeastMode. PC is the key to this franchise’s success. I think Russell will be successful where ever he goes but would he be as successful without Pete? I believe Pete and John are among the top three Coach/GM combos in the game and players would do well to remember that.

          That said, Trout just got a $430 million contract. Is Russell looking for the biggest contract in the NFL or the biggest in sports?

      • Elmer

        Rob, have you analyzed this?

        Let us assume that (1) we reach a deal extending Frank Clark ($19MM?) and (2) that Russell Wilson plays on the franchise tag after his contract expires.

        Given those assumptions, about how much cap room would the Seahawks have to re-sign Wagner and Reed?

        • Rob Staton

          They’d have plenty of room to do it.

      • Jeff M.

        There’s not really any risk of that. There are no examples of franchise QBs hitting the market when their current team doesn’t want them to. The R*******s chose to go year-to-year with Cousins and let him hit the market because they didn’t think he was a franchise guy (they were right). Guys like Peyton and Brees were only let go post-injury and in favor of a younger franchise star. Nobody like Russell has ever hit the open market or moved in free agency.

        • Rob Staton

          This is what I mean when I say I don’t think people realize the seriousness of this situation.

          There’s this assumption that everything will be OK just because Peyton Manning a decade ago or Brees approaching 40 haven’t moved to other teams.

          Wilson isn’t going to agree terms just because other QB’s have done in the past. He’s going to do what is best for him. The Cousins situation might not be a direct comparison in the way the Redskins felt about their starting quarterback but it’s extremely relevant in terms of setting a precedent for maxing out your earning potential.

    • laphroaig

      It’s not just about acquiring additional picks by trading Wilson (or Clark). It’s also about solving that big cap hit problem Rob’s been warning us about.

      Are you willing to satisfy Wilson’s contract demands if it means no additional picks this year AND being unable to re-sign two or more of Clark, Wagner or Reed?

      As for me, if the Giants really are going to offer the picks Rob outlined, I’d take that deal in a heartbeat.

    • Brandon Adams

      They will go t-79 without him. But Russell without a team will be 9-7 semi-dreck.

  6. j

    If they have to pay Wilson more than 35 million a year long term, I say move on. If that is the case and the Giants are willing to do that deal I’d do it in a heartbeat. You can’t burn 20-25% of the cap on one player, quarterback or not.

  7. schuemansky

    I think the idea of trading RW and Brissett under the scenario Rob described is very appealing.
    The thought of getting close to nothing when eventually losing RW would be frustrating to put it politely.

    Just read this.

    So what about giving up our R3 compensatory pick in 2020 for Quinn with a cap hit of around 9 mil?

    • Rob Staton

      No way am I giving up a 2020 third rounder for Robert Quinn.

    • DCD2

      You can’t trade comp picks that haven’t been awarded yet. They won’t get announced until around 3/1/20.

    • WALL UP

      Perhaps their least valued 6th Rd pick may be available in another week or so. Miami is building for the future, and in need of more picks, since they probably won’t get any picks this year for him.

      Most teams are just waiting for him to be released, so they can work out a more cap friendly price for him. If they do trade for him, it would be best to negotiate a new deal prior to signing him.

      • Rob Staton

        Any team who trades for him is a mug.

        Wait for him to be released, which he will be.

  8. Josh

    I just don’t think Wilson is in the giants plans. *COMMENT REMOVED* If the giants are selling the farm for RW, signing Tate(with quite a bit of guaranteed money) prior to trading for RW seems ridiculous.

    • Rob Staton

      Let me make this very clear.

      Speculation based on absolutely nothing but internet rumours about people’s private lives won’t be tolerated.

      • SeventiesHawksFan

        It’s not just a rumor, Rob. You can remove this comment. But that ‘rumor’ has one of Wilson’s closest and longtime persons in his group confirming it in a conversation I’ll not disclose how or where it happened. But what I am sure of is that he would not just make it up. Golden Tate in New York means there is no plan to trade for Russell Wilson.

        • Rob Staton

          I’m happy to take an email detailing the legitimacy of it, otherwise I don’t want it to be discussed.

          • Josh

            Everything we talk about on here is internet speculation about people’s lives. Wasn’t trying to get anyone upset. Just saying I don’t see RW going to the Giants

        • LLLOGOSSS

          It was also reported to be a topic of conversation *inside* the Seahawks locker room at the time, so calling it an “internet rumor” isn’t quite right. People with unnamed sources inside the locker room touched on it (albeit very lightly). If I remember correctly, didn’t Gee Scott mention that it was a rumor in the locker room?

          • Rob Staton

            So what?

            I’m not interested in ‘gossip’ about a man’s private life.

            There are plenty of other sites that will indulge anyone who wishes to talk about this topic. Not here.

  9. Ty the Guy

    Complicated. Will get more frustrating as time goes on. Pretty safe bet, Russ gets tagged twice and signs a mega deal.

    My only question is will his cap # cripple the Hawks? Will tagging Russ and/or extending him force the Hawks to part ways with other talented players. Don’t misunderstand me please, I would love to have Russ for the duration of his career. But part of me is sad, because I’m starting to feel like Russ is not the person I thought he was after his first year. I think ambition is needed for a winner, but can be a slippery slope to losing focus.

    Rob, I am coming around on your ideas on Will Grier. Has there been much chatter on him regarding his draft stock? Will he last past the 2nd round? Will someone grab him in the first?

    • Rob Staton

      There’s talk that some teams really like Grier and others not so much. Had been some chatter he could go late R1.

      • j

        All it takes is one. I think he goes in early round 2.

      • Ty the Guy

        I thought that’d be the case. He seems like one of those guys that any interested team would stay silent on their interest, hoping he’d fall.

        Grier is one of those guys who don’t fit the mold of a prototype, but you know if you get him on the field, he will be a gamer. Was hoping the Hawks would have a shot at him in the 3rd. Now, barring a Russ trade, I don’t see it happening.

        • King_Rajesh

          “if you get him on the field, he will be a gamer.”

          I’m not sure where this sentiment comes from when it comes to Grier, but he sat out his bowl game to preserve his draft stock and then proceeded to lay an egg at the Senior Bowl. That’s not a gamer mentality.

          Grier probably isn’t a franchise guy. The system at WV made Geno Smith look good and he benefited from Big 12 teams not knowing how to play defense.

          Are we willing to accept the delta from the elite QB that we have to having somebody that probably maxes out at being Andy Dalton? Or worse?

          I already saw this team in the 90s and 00s struggle to find anything better than mediocrity at the QB position. I don’t need to see those dark days in the NFL’s cellar return.

      • FresnoHawk

        As you know I love Grier his performance at Florida is what really attracted me to him. His play at Florida in my mind overcomes the criticism of the system at West Virginia. However I’m second guessing myself due to Tony Pauline’s criticism of Grier at the Senior Bowl & Combine. Waiting to see what happens at Grier’s pro day.

    • 1lmdm9

      Time to reimagine the team

  10. Gohawks5151

    You hate writing about this and I hate hearing it too. A large part of me is just expecting it to get done, even if it is an overpay. They know the value they hold to one another. Bottom line, if he does not end up staying in Seattle it is because he just doesn’t want to be here. I find him a very hard guy to read. I think he is mostly what he presents. A genuinely good (and weird) dude. But he does have a huge competitive streak. I guess that’s where it falls apart for me. If they are going to make you the highest paid guy in the league, on arguably a top 3 most successful team in the past decade, why don’t you sign? Waiting for someone like Mahommes to sign, so you can top it? External factors (wife, market, business opportunity)? Him leaving would really hurt considering that the team “picked him” over many of the guys that are not here anymore depending on what you believe. That said I’m hopeful.

    • Hawksnest

      Here’s to 35 mill a year

  11. King_Rajesh

    “If this was about giving Wilson $35m a year (making him comfortably the top paid player in the league) — the deal probably gets done tomorrow. I sense Wilson has no interest in agreeing terms on a contract like that.”

    I agree with you, Rob, that $35m APY won’t get it done. If Wilson wanted 35m, Schneider should be running to wherever Wilson was to get that inked. I think that Wilson wants the headline that the Seahawks didn’t give to him on his second contract – the respect building, record setting contract. The contract that says to the public and the locker room, that “the Seahawks are your team.”

    Unfortunately, most of the records are already set. Kirk Cousins got the first fully guaranteed contract. Matt Ryan was the first to get 100m guaranteed and the first to exceed 30m APY. Aaron Rodgers got over 50m at signing and is the top of the market. I also think that Wilson wouldn’t want a 5 year deal. If he plans to play another 10 years, maximizing bites at the rising salary cap are critical, and two four year deals gives him the opportunity to get one more contract when he’s 38.

    Even if Wilson is willing to play on the cap and bet on himself, I honestly think the Seahawks could make Wilson an offer that he can’t refuse by giving him his worth on the open market now versus in two years. 4 years, 160m, 120m guaranteed, 60m signing bonus. It checks all the boxes for Russell.

    First every 40m APY contract.
    Most money ever guaranteed.
    Largest ever signing bonus.

    I think this would be a cap on the market as well – much like how Rodgers capped Wilson and Cam Newton on their last contracts. The only QB that has the juice to exceed this contract would probably be Mahomes in two or three years, but maybe not even then if he can’t win the Super Bowl or if the Chiefs regress. The downside is that 40m is 21% of the cap in 2019 and 20% of a projected 2020 cap of 200m, but it’ll be worth it to keep the best player in Franchise History here for the foreseeable future.

    • Rob Staton

      I don’t think the Seahawks will have any interest in giving him a $40m a year contract.

      • King_Rajesh

        If we both agree that they’d run to give him 35m APY, then what’s an additional 5m per year?

        They blow 5m+ on other terrible signings!

        Eddie Lacy -> 4.25m
        Luke Joeckel -> 8m
        Cary William -> 6m APY
        Barkevious Mingo -> 5.9m
        Sheldon Richardson -> 8m

        • Rob Staton

          Well then what’s an extra $10m? That’s only half a CJ Mosley. Give him $50m. Or $60m.

          You don’t think if you make Wilson the highest paid player in the league by $6.5m a year that Frank Clark, Bobby Wagner and Jarran Reed aren’t going to expect a similarly inflated salary?

          • King_Rajesh

            Come on Rob, you’re better than that. There’s no need to appeal to absurdity.

            Frank Clark, Wagner, and Reed can walk and bring us back a comp pick if they expect a similar increase in salary. They’re not a quarterback. As we all know, the NFL is a quarterback driven league.

            Paying Rodgers 7m more than the highest paid QB of the year prior (Matt Stafford) probably didn’t have any effect in Green Bay.

            • Rob Staton

              You’re missing the point.

              The point I’m making is the minute you overpay Wilson EVERY player you negotiate with is going to demand more. You’ll forever be the team that gave Russell Wilson FORTY MILLION when the next highest paid player in the ENTIRE LEAGUE was only on $33.5m.

              The only absurd thing is the idea the team would do that just because Russell would like to hit some kind of benchmark.

              It’s a total non starter.

              Matt Ryan’s APY is not $26.5m. It’s $30m. So Rodgers got $3.5m more. And I’m suggesting $35m for Wilson, another generous improvement.

              • King_Rajesh

                I would rather be the team that gave Russell Wilson forty million when the next highest paid player in the entire league was only on $33.5m than the team that let THEIR BEST QB AND ALSO ARGUABLY PLAYER IN FRANCHISE HISTORY go somewhere else in his prime.

                Schneider can deal with the first through being firm in negotiating, he’ll go down in history as a laughingstock for the second.

                • Rob Staton

                  Listen, I respect your passion for wanting to keep Wilson.

                  But I’m really pleased you’re not the person deciding Wilson’s next contract for the Seahawks.

                  Rolling over and giving him a ridiculous deal like you’re proposing would be a disaster. They’d never be able to negotiate with anyone ever again.

                  They’re not giving him $40m a year.

                  • Ashish

                    “But I’m really pleased you’re not the person deciding Wilson’s next contract for the Seahawks” @Rob

                    ha ha ha. So true. I agree with Rob Hawks are probably trying to offer less money than what Roger is getting with more grantee money. Hawks has never over paid (relatively) the player, they are very thought full.

                    I just hope we get some return and not just comp picks. I doubt PCJS will lose RW, Clark or Bobby. They will also find a way to keep Reed.

                  • Elmer

                    John Schneider is not going to throw money around carelessly. He’s jut not.

                    You have warned us, and we need to be prepared for the possibility of life without RW

                    If that happens, the question becomes “How do we build a championship contending team?”. By then there may be other fundamental issues too, such as a new head coach and new GM..

                    • Rob Staton

                      I think Pete would, actually, find it an invigorating challenge. Whether he succeeded in building a new Championship team or not would remain to be seen. But he and John are the only ones to do it in Seattle so far.

                  • LLLOGOSSS

                    But Rob, as you’ve shown, why would Wilson accept less? Three franchise tags works out to $39 million and some change APY.

                    • Rob Staton

                      I haven’t suggested he’d accept less. I think he’s waiting to receive an offer and if it’s not good enough he’ll bet on himself.

              • King_Rajesh

                “Matt Ryan’s APY is not $26.5m. It’s $30m. So Rodgers got $3.5m more. And I’m suggesting $35m for Wilson, another generous improvement.”

                I never said that Ryan’s APY wasn’t anything but 30m APY.

                Just saying that Rodgers got 7m more than the prior year’s highest paid QB – Matt Stafford’s 27.0m APY in 2017. A similar jump for Wilson would be quite steep, but it wouldn’t be unprecedented.

                • Rob Staton

                  Stafford has nothing to do with this.

                  Rodgers is seven times better than Matt Stafford.

                  What lesser QB’s earn in their new contracts is irrelevant.

                  What matters here is the jump Rodgers made compared to the previous highest paid player (Ryan). And it wasn’t seven million. And they’re not paying Wilson seven million more than Rodgers.

                • Trevor

                  Russ has won a grand total of 2 wildcard games since his last big extension and you want to give him $40 mil per year or 25% of the teams cap space. Really? Does not seem like a formula for anything more than year of mediocrity and complaints about not having enough talent around your franchise QB.

      • SeventiesHawksFan

        $36 to $37 million per year for five years is the likely absolute ceiling. Especially prior to the CBA being renogotiated.

        The NFL ownership doesn’t want to set a $40 million dollar per year market for a QB.

        And Wilson is not going to get more than Mahomes when his time comes. His camp knew that Luck would likely get more. And that Aaron Rodgers would too. Seems unlikely they are going to be under the illusion that Wilson can remain the highest paid ever.

        Wilson’s camp is undecided about remaining in Seattle is my understanding. Ciara doesn’t love Seattle. But she’s not closed to the possibility either. That is one important factor. But not the deciding issue either.

        The Wilson camp wants to see that the club is committed to him not being injured (good O line) and giving hi an extended career. Wilson does feel some degree responsibility btw for the year he got hurt. He barely worked out that offseason and showed up in camp not in proper condition. It’s not just as cut and dry as what Seattle needs to do for him.

        But he does expect is for Russell to enjoy an extended career, win more championships and get paid.

        • yallcrazy

          It’s honestly amazing that people think Wilson on an open market wouldn’t get more than Rodgers or even Mahomes. He is 2nd all time in qb rating has led the nfl in TDs has consistently been a league leader in scoring while on a very small volume. Put him in a Mahomes type situation he would put up the same or better numbers. If you let Russ walk he will be getting 40+ offers the instant he is out the door.

    • Michigan 12th

      I say just sign him to a fully guaranteed 3 year $110 million dollar contract. He gets his tag money and we don’t have to use the tag. Then we could resign him after the new CBA, then he and us get to see what we are up against in the new contract. It seems like everyone wins in that scenario, plus we get to keep our franchise tags for Wagner/Reed.

      • Rob Staton

        If only it were that simple.

  12. no frickin' clue

    I agree that this discussion is becoming unavoidable, and it gives me a few thoughts on the matter:

    1. Russ surely must realize that if he intends to extract max dollars from the Seahawks (or some alternative), then he is also leaving fewer dollars behind for the other 52 guys who he will be leading out of the tunnel every Sunday. So ending every interview with ‘Go Hawks’ rings a bit hollow. I’m not saying he should be Mother Theresa but wouldn’t accepting a multi-year deal with an APY of $35m be more than sufficient? Even Tom Brady’s cap hit is only $27M this year.

    2. If Russ does use the franchise tag to hold us hostage, it probably means being unable to sign all 3 of the other guys – Wags, Clark and Reed. Maybe we keep 2 of 3. It raises the importance of Russ playing well. If he does suffer an injury after signing a big deal, the importance of the defense rises even as we likely diminished it.

    My guess, if Russ is really willing to bet on himself via the tag for a long time, then the fiscally prudent thing to do is get Grier in either the late 1st or early 2nd, let Russ play out his existing deal, franchise him in 2020, and then let him walk in 2021 while signing 2 of the other 3 guys to longer-term deals in 2020. It gives the heir apparent at QB a chance to back up Russ for 2 seasons before starting in year 3.

    • King_Rajesh

      “Even Tom Brady’s cap hit is only $27M this year.”

      Not every NFL QB has a wife that’s worth 400 million.

      • Gohawks5151

        But Russ’ wife isn’t poor either. Ask Dak about that haha

        • King_Rajesh

          There’s a significant difference between Ciara’s net worth of $20m and Gisele’s 400m.

          Tom Brady has barely made half of his wife’s net worth in all of his NFL career. Wilson made more than his wife’s net worth last year.

          • Kyle

            Not sure Brady really does the contracts he does because his wife is loaded. Dude wants to win no matter what. I hate the guy because I think he’s a jerk but I suspect if his wife were a tire model making Brett Hundley money he’d still be taking less to let Belichick get him the tools to win more each year.

            • sdcoug

              Plus, the Patriots are “conveniently” a client of Brady’s sports performance business

  13. Uncle Bob

    Thanks for having the courage to continue to discuss this topic Rob, keepin’ it real.

    Like you I’d rather a reasonable deal would work out with Russ, but I share the sense that he and his agent are going to make it as difficult, on the team, as they can for maximum gain. I’m not as sure that the Giants will be seeking him though, just doesn’t strike me as the kind of QB that Gettleman covets. Shurmer might have some sway in that, but I just don’t believe so. I like your proposed trade stock, and not crazy like those folks who used to think ETIII was worth two firsts, but Gettleman would really have to be in love with RW to go there. On the other side of the coin, based on recent history, JS has an uncomfortable habit of over valuing what he has until it’s too late. Then there’s Pete’s vote. Is he going to want to work with a new qb in what are possibly his final seasons? I suspect not, which goes to the Tag scenario, that gives him Russ to the end of his deal. And what new ambitions does JS have beyond his current deal? It’s either continue to be a GM or take a new career path………….commissioner maybe? Not too many jobs higher than the one he has now in pro football.

    Fan is short for fanatic. They don’t have any accountability so can hold a narrow view without penalty. The fanatics just can’t envision leveraging an asset like RW, even if it might make sense. It’s human nature, the belief in a “silver bullet” solution. But it takes more than a “franchise” qb to climb to the pinnacle……………..Green Bay anyone? We needed a franchise qb when we found Russ. Other teams likewise. The challenge, of course, is being able to pick the right one at the right time. Fans typically are not good at that……………………but GMs and Head Coaches are paid to do just that. It’s not impossible for PC/JS to do it again, difficult, not impossible. But, it should be a “last resort” play……….and do it if necessary/beneficial.

  14. New Guy

    As Rob stated:

    “If this was about giving Wilson $35m a year (making him comfortably the top paid player in the league) — the deal probably gets done tomorrow. I sense Wilson has no interest in agreeing terms on a contract like that.”

    I can see that. And in seeing that would think that the time could be now to move in a new direction. With the precipitously escalating cap number, I don’t see Pete wanting to envision the end of his NFL career be sidetracked from his vision of re-creating the glory years of the Seahawks. There is still time for his career goals if we trade Russel this off season for the first pick in this year’s draft (+ more picks). There is probably a handful paths available to achieve this. JS is both crafty and well connected.

    That way we could get Murray and he could have a team that is being currently re-built for a player of his capacity and style. It would be great to get the monkey off our backs regarding the size of Russel’s contract. A 4- or 5-year rookie QB contract amount looks really good to me right now. The money pie is only so big. I’d love having more of the pie available for other tasty slices.

    I might suggest getting an experienced pro QB to either start for a while or show him the ropes.

    The Seahawks’ (and Pete’s) near and medium futures could be very bright.

    I’m glad Rob’s still on his rookie contract and we still get to communicate with him directly thru this site. It might not always be this way…


    • Kenny Sloth


      Can we talk about resigning Rob to keep him around for the long term? Nobody in their right minds would let him test free agency.

      He’s a top 5 blogger. Elite.

      Proven production on a vet minimum deal lol

  15. astro.domine

    To put it plainly, in regards to the hypothetical Giants trade outlined above: Absolutely.

    The core of the roster could immediately become so much more talented, and it could remain so for the foreseeable future. Two 1st round D-liners? And then throw in a Parris Campbell at 21?!
    I truly think Brisset or Grier could get that team 10 or 11 wins. And if we somehow landed on the right QB on a cheap deal, we would be lavishing in another truly dominant era of Seahawks football.

  16. Dingbatman

    Wouldn’t any team who might trade for Russell only do so if it is contingent on being able to negotiate a new contract with him? If Russell is set on becoming an UFA I can’t see any team trading for him.

    • Rob Staton

      Sure. There’d have to be the parameters for a deal.

    • Richard

      I found your take very interesting to contemplate overall. While I don’t want to see Russell Wilson traded or play for any other team, I also believe he will only play five or so more years to establish his HOF credentials, then move on. I am not a tosterbation type but this one intrigued me. If the Giants or any team comes a knocking I think it will take 3 1sts over 2 years and more, but how much more so I put on my thinking cap. NY Gs give 2019. #1-6, #1-17, #2-37, 4-6, 5-4, 7-18 plus 2020–#1 & #3 and maybe Eli Manning. Sea gives 2019–#1-21 and Russell Wilson. Also a interesting side aspect to help motivate Seattle to do it is Seattle also swaps Rashaad Penny for Saquon Barkley and maybe reduce or eliminate the 2019 #1-17 and/or keep the #1-21 or drop the 2020 1st. Just spit ballin.

      • Richard

        Oops, this should have been at the end for Ron.

        • Richard aka DesertSeahawk

          Jeez, sorry Rob.

      • yallcrazy

        The giants are not giving up Barkley that is in now way whatsoever a realistic trade

        • Richard aka DesertSeahawk

          Odell Beckham jr. is a Cleveland Brown, so what is reality?

  17. millhouse-serbia

    FA LB Aaron Lynch is now on his way to visit the #Seahawks, source said.

  18. Sea Mode

    Ian Rapoport

    FA LB Aaron Lynch is now on his way to visit the #Seahawks, source said.

    2:30 PM – 18 Mar 2019

  19. dylanlep

    It doesnt look likely because he will probably go number 1 by all accounts, but if Kyler was available at the Giants pick, I would absolutely do it if I were the Hawks. His ability, along w the added draft capital and cap space, I think would allow for Seattle to stay at their current level and maybe even improve.

    Anything other than Kyler I think results in a pretty big regression if you trade Russell. And if nothing happens with this class, we will have to monitor next year’s class as well as this situation potentially becomes even more acute. I am not sure I like anyone coming up for next year’s class nearly as much as Kyler, but of course even Kyler kind of came out of nowhere this year. Fromm, Tua, Eason, Herbert all come to mind as the big one right now. I don’t think any are on Kyler’s level.

  20. SeahawkeyezSubj80

    Let’s hope owners seeing a trend in QBs franchising themselves out of town and get something written in the next CBA not allowing it.

  21. Trevor

    Does Russ even have any trade value? If he won’t sign a deal with Seattle then why would he sign a reasonable deal with another team? Would you want your team to give up anything for the right to pay record setting detail to a QB who has won a grand total of 2 wildcard playoff games since his last big extension 4 yrs ago.

    • mishima

      Because it’s New York. And New York won’t always be there.

  22. SebA

    Awesome stuff, Rob. Perhaps perversely, I’m pretty excited to see what the eventual conclusion of the RW saga looks like. Whatever happens will be etched in the history books, that’s for sure.

  23. Hawksince77


    I think you are correct in your assessment, even calling out the OBJ trade (a move I included in my original assessment some weeks ago).

    To add to the discussion, there is an article on with NYG’s GM defending paying Manning his roster bonus and salary this year (total of about $16M if memory serves). I read it closely and he makes two points: you need a QB and Manning’s struggles in 2018 (at age 38) were team issues (offensive line in particular) and not on Manning. They finished the year 4-4 and he saw improvement. Does any of this impact a possible RW trade? I don’t know.

    Also, if Seattle makes the trade, I doubt they value anyone at #6 that would keep them from trading down, and adding to their bounty. With 3 first round picks, they might trade down a few times in the round, maximizing the value of the picks.

    The more I look at Grier the more I like (Murray should be off the table, IMO). Using one of the mid-to-late first round picks would be ideal, giving the club 5 years of control.

    As for a veteran, along with Lynch, why not RG3? There’s a fair chance he wins the starting job in 2019, and either keeps the job or cedes to Grier in 2020.

    In any case, I strongly believe the best chance for the Seahawks to compete for a championship in 2020 and 2021 (the last years of PC’s current contract) is to make the move now. Keeping RW for the next two years almost guarantees team mediocrity.

    And consider this final point: what is PC’s and JS’s legacy right now? They got lucky with Sherman, Kam and RW, put together an awesome defense with the addition of Bennet (who they actually cut in his rookie year), signed a (should be) HOF RB for nothing, a player who rocked (in a good way) the franchise, and then made the biggest bonehead offensive call in SB history. And after those star players (Lynch, Kam, Thomas, Sherman, etc.) were gone, failed (unlike Belichek) to put together another championship team.

    I don’t believe that narrative, but that is how it will be remembered, if the Seahawks repeat in the next couple of years the last couple of years.

    But what about a do-over? They trade RW, restock the defense with this year’s awesome array of talent, play their game of running the ball, stopping the run, rushing the passer, and taking deep shots on occasion (with the best deep throwing player in this draft) and return to championship form on 2020 and 2021. Doing so would cement PC’s legacy, putting him in the fast track to the HOF.

    From the outside looking in, that’s what the opportunity looks like to me.

    • DCD2

      You make a lot of good points here. The big question in regards to the team trading Russ would be, what next? Who takes over? RG3, or Bortles? Not much out there for FA in that regard. Grier, I’m not sold on, but you probably have to draft a QB this year if RW is dealt.

      If we could get that haul of picks though… trade back, add some pieces and maybe a team like Miami goes for a QB early and wants to get a WR1 to go with him (DK Metcalf or Harry, etc.) could we then trade our late 1st for their 2020 #1 and whatever else evens it out? With NYG and MIA’s #1 we’d have a decent shot at a top 5 pick, if not #1 overall. Worst case, we’d have 3 #1’s, two of which are likely at least top 10. At that point make the move to get Tua, IMO. He looks, sounds, plays and acts like a 21 year old Russ. If (insert rookie QB name) played well, we leverage trading him a la NE.

      It would take some major stones to approach it this way. We’d have pitchforks and people calling for PC/JS heads if we are going into this year with RG3 or Bortles along with Lynch and a rookie. Even with Russ though, we were the #27 ranked pass offense in the NFL.

      • Hawksince77

        Yes, it would take “stones” to make such a move. Risk either way IMO, although not dealing RW seems more predictable (higher floor, lower ceiling).

        As for trading up in the first round – I don’t see that in the future, because it goes against what I perceive as their basic draft philosophy, one that seems very healthy. There are no sure things. Draft multiple options, which means acquiring the most picks possible (with value). If they trade RW, and move down multiple times in the first round, they might actually draft two QBs.

        In general, with the current roster, a host of draft picks in 2019 and 2020, additional cap space (used primarily to re-sign core players) they could field a championship team based on PC’s blue print.

        One other thought. Any player (not just RW) who prices himself off the team (could also apply to Clark this year) they should treat the same way. Trade them when possible (RW, Clark this year) or let them walk (Sherman, Thomas in the past couple of years) potentially Reed, Wagner next year (trade them in the latter two cases).

        JS wouldn’t pay Thomas to be the highest paid safety even when he arguably was. I don’t see that changing, because it’s not team-healthy to get these huge contracts on multiple players.

  24. SeahawkeyezSubj80

    Rob just curious what your thoughts on Paxton Lynch in the present. I remember you were high on him when he was drafted. I think he got a raw deal in Denver and just needs to develop.

    • Rob Staton

      Liked him in the draft. No idea if he can turn his career around in Seattle. We’ll have to wait and see.

      • SeahawkeyezSubj80


  25. Starhawk29

    It would be a travesty if Russ left. The more I look at it, the more likely it seems to me, and I think it might be the greatest mistake in our franchise’s history. Obviously throwing more money at the problem doesn’t solve anything, and paying Russ anything over 40M would be a serious waste. That being said, I think people in this community and the media have underestimated how hard it is to find a QB that is truly special.

    Say we trade Russ, get a boatload of picks, and secure, hypothetically and somewhat unrealistically, the no. 1 overall choice in 2020. We can have our pick of the litter in a “QB Year.” Looking back on the 1st rd QB’s picked since Russ’s year, I’m not very confident we’d find a QB that will be even close to a great long term QB. Of the 5 guys picked in the 1st round in 2012, only Luck and Tannehill were considered starters last year, and Tannehill is a below average QB at best. Foles is solid but I wouldn’t ever guarantee he’d match the magic that made him a legend in Philly. RW was a steal in the 3rd that year. 2013 was a disastrous class of QBs, but that wasn’t a QB year like 2012. 2014 was just as bad, with Bortles and Manziel. 2015 had Mariota and Winston, 2 guys who are either turnover or injury prone depending on the day, and both playing for their careers just 5 years after being drafted. Both were hailed as difference makers out of school, revolutionary prospects. 2016 is now coming to the breaking point for their QBs. Wentz is always hurt and wasn’t the same player this year. Goff has been decent to good for the Rams, but was not the same player in the playoffs or superbowl. To my eye, he’s Alex Smith playing for Andy Reid. I wouldn’t choose either of them over Russ.

    The recent drafts are a little to early to call it on, but Trubisky looks thoroughly average, might be Goff 2.0 at best in my book. Watson has been electric at times, but there still are questions about his longevity. Mahomes was the MVP but I’d pump the brakes just a little on his hype train. It was one season, lets see what happens in year 2 of him starting. Watson was on a similar track to Mahomes before injury, and there could be a slight regression towards the mean. This last year, everyone is full on the QB hype train after more got drafted early. It was a QB year. Odds are only 1 of them become anything more than decent long term, maybe 2 if a team is lucky.

    Finding QBs is the hardest thing to do in the NFL for a reason. Most QBs coming out of school, regardless of hype, are bad NFL players. In the 7 years since we drafted Russ, there are all of 2 guys in the NFL that are truly great over a long period of time, and they are Luck and Wilson. 1st Rd QBs are still very likely to bust, and losing a truly great QB, however inevitable, is a tragedy.

    • Rob Staton

      I don’t think anyone has underestimated how hard it is to find a franchise QB to be fair. I certainly haven’t. That’s why I stated in the piece I don’t want to trade Wilson. I want an extension that works for all parties.

      But I also don’t want to lose him in 2022 for at best a third round comp pick and in the process lose other players (eg Clark, Wagner, Reed) because we have no franchise tag to use on them.

      • Starhawk29

        Rob, that’s fair enough, and I agree that getting just a comp pick would be an even bigger waste. I just feel that given the growing trend of “hire an offensive guy and QB just solves itself” that’s so pervasive these days thanks to McVay and Nagy has created a false perception in the media that QBs are not that hard to find anymore. I’m still optimistic we’ll resign Wilson to a reasonable deal, but it is a little frustrating to see the potential this falls apart. Either way, thanks again for the amazing work, you are hands down my favorite read on the Hawks.

    • Hawksince77


      My position (in favor of trading RW) is not based on the assumption that landing an equivalent talent is easy, or even likely. My view is that PC doesn’t need a top-three player at that position to win championships. And he certainly doesn’t need to be paying that player what RW will (with reason) demand.

      They were lucky and bold drafting RW to being with. He allowed them to field a championship team in his second and third year, paying him peanuts at the time. Those championship years were not RW’s best, either actually on the field or statistically. He has since bloomed into one of the top QBs barely getting his team into the play-offs, or missing them altogether. We have seen in recent years what an incomplete team (from PC’s perspective) looks like. Having a top QB doesn’t mask major offensive and defensive deficiencies, and there is no clear path from here (limited draft capital and cap space) from changing that anytime soon.

      But to your main point, casting off a great QB is highly risky, and it could burn them in the end. But not doing it is risky as well, suffering the opportunity cost in draft picks and cap space.

      • Starhawk29


        I think Carroll can create a winning team, but not a SB team without a good QB. Russ wasn’t the face of the franchise yet, that was Sherm or ET or Kam at the time, but he pulled a whole lot of wins out of defeats in those early seasons. In 2012 everyone thought the missing piece was QB. We had an average QB in 2011 with Tjax, and we had a losing record despite a nascent all-time defense.

        Frankly I don’t think you can win more than one superbowl with even a slightly above average QB. The ravens are an example. The Rams came up short this year because their QB got the yips in the big game. They had one of the most stacked rosters in the league. Without an elite QB the margin for error required to win a superbowl shrinks dramatically. PC teams have never been good at being truly mistake free. They like to dig themselves into holes, and climb out of it. Not sure we can do that without a really good QB. No question it would be a waste to let Russ walk, and I’d rather trade him, but it would mean we aren’t contending before PC retires.

        • AlaskaHawk

          Eli Manning is an example of a good but not great quarterback who went to the superbowl a few times. There team was built on tough defenses. They had a bit of a running game and some success at passing, but nothing spectacular.
          2007 season, they beat the Patriots 17-14
          2011 season, they beat the Patriots 21-17

          Well that makes me feel a little better to see the Patriots lost twice to them.

          • BobbyK

            Maybe if we had Eli, we could beat the Patriots in a Super Bowl, too. 🙂

            • Hawksince77

              LOL 🙂

          • Starhawk29

            Very true, forgot about Eli. He was always good but never truly great. I think its doable, incredibly difficult, but doable. I’d still like to see a team use the “draft a QB in the 1st, then trade him in year 4” model that some have discussed on this site. Not sure Carroll is the coach to do it though. If I were McVay though…I’d be very tempted. Regardless, I still worry that abandoning a true franchise QB to find another is a recipe for failure. There’s an old fishing saying: you don’t leave fish to find fish

    • DCD2

      It’s hard to argue with any of this. Finding a top QB is ridiculously hard and teams that are in need of one typically reach for QB’s in the 1st because of this. Losing Russell would be terrible. Losing him for a 3rd round comp pick would be devastating.

      One counterpoint to what you point out is this. Having a franchise QB doesn’t guarantee playoff success. 7/12 teams from the playoffs this year featured a QB on his rookie deal. 2017 had 8/12 playoff teams featuring a QB who wasn’t in the top 10 in pay. 80% of the highest paid QB’s from last year didn’t make the playoffs.

      I’d still love to keep Russ, if there is a way to be cap-conscious about it. That scenario is sounding less likely as of late.

      • Starhawk29


        The stats don’t lie for sure, but are the guys who are the highest paid over the last few years really the best QBs in the league? I would argue outside of Rodgers they really aren’t. Stafford, Ryan, Garropolo, and Carr are not worth their money but were the priciest guys. I’d say at this point in his career, Russ is better than all of them combined. I’d rather pay top of the market for him than roll with a rookie who will fizzle out after 2 or 3 years statistically. Granted, 40mil is too much, but at 35 or even 37mil I’d say he’s worth it.

  26. Mykc

    Maybe my math is off (it probably is), but wouldn’t RW make more money (or at least close to the same amount with way less risk) over the next 4 years if he signed a 3 year extension with the Hawks for 35-36 mil/year? If he signs a 3 year extension at 36 mil- he would make a max of $125 mil over the next 4 years (this years 17 million salary plus 3 year extension worth 108). If he gets F-tagged for 2 years that would be about $83 mil for 3 years (next year at 17 plus 2 F-tags at about 30 and 36). Then his next contract would have to average 43 million (which I am sure is possible) just to catch up to what he would have earned in the last year of an extension with the Hawks. At that point he would have had to of signed a long term contract worth 43 mil but play for 3 years at a much greater risk. Signing the 3 year extension puts his FA year another year out and would increase his long-term deal by another 2-4 mil/year. It just seems that even financially from RW’s perspective extending 3 years with the Hawks is the best deal.

    • Rob Staton

      No. If Wilson signs an extension worth $36m per year it would be an extension to his existing deal. So his 2019 cap hit would stay the same. Then he would earn the $36m in 2020 and so on. So in 2019 he wouldn’t earn $36m, his cap hit is $25m. So you have to include that.

      If he plays the franchise tag game he’d earn a fully guaranteed $66m in 2020 and 2021 and would then be a free agent, where he’d make even more than $36m per year because teams would be falling over themselves to get him.

      So financially he’s better off playing the cap game.

      • Mykc

        Yeah I included his 2019 cap hit in my math let me break it down this way Option A: extend with Hawks 3 years 36 mil/year average. Option B: f-tag twice and then FA.

        Option A) 2019: 17 mil, 2020: 36 mil, 2021: 36 mil, 2022: 36 mil (of course 2020-2022 are all average cap hits) Total after 4 years $125 million: Free Agency year 2023.

        Option B) 2019: 17 mi, 2020: 30 mil, 2021: 36 mil. Total after 3 years $83 million. Free Agency year 2022.

        In option B he would have to make 43 million in year 1 of his new contract in 2022 just to equal what he would have got had he went with route A and at a much greater risk.

        If he went with option A he makes more money and hits FA a year later- when he would average more per year on a long-term contract (signing a long-term contract in 2023 is worth more than signing one in 2022. Plus less risk with this option.

        • Rob Staton

          I guarantee he would make much more money as a free agent. The $43m number you suggested wouldn’t be unrealistic in a bidding war. Look what happened to CJ Mosley for example. Teams would be fighting to get him. And he’d get massive, massive guarantees having already earned a full $66m on the tag.

          • Mykc

            Yeah if he hits FA then he will get a ton of money no doubt. The other thing that option A doesn’t do is use up the F-Tag. In option A the Hawks could still, theoretically, F-Tag him for 2 years (if something doesn’t change with the next CBA). Anyway, thanks for the discussion- your blog is awesome and a must read for any Hawks fan. I tell every Hawk fan about it!

      • Eli

        Looking at the structure of the Rodgers deal provides some insight – $57.5m signing bonus, $98.2m guaranteed, $78.7m guaranteed at signing. He made $67m last year alone.

        So if he signed an extension today he would likely guarantee himself a bit more than the tag figures, ballpark I’d guess he’d take home something like a $65m signing bonus and probably receive a total first year cash payment near $70m – $75m. And as the time value of money goes its incredibly more beneficial to have that money in hand today than spread over multiple years.

        • Rob Staton

          People are seriously underestimating the amount of guarantees Wilson will get if he becomes a free agent. It would blow everything else out of the water. No deal in Seattle will come close to what he earns on the open market. And all after two years at $66m fully guaranteed on the tag.

          That’s the point.

          • AlaskaHawk

            Rob- Your basically saying that Wilson wants to be recognized as a great quarterback, which is partly based on what pay your offered, and that if goes free agent he will get his highest pay. Since he knows that also, he will be going free agent. It may be in a year, or it may be after two franchise tags, but he will be going free agent. And Seahawks probably won’t be able to match whatever he is offered. At least that is what I am hearing from all this.

          • Eli

            Well sure, but you’re somewhat obscuring my point – obviously the two tags + his next contract will be more than what a new deal now would guarantee him because that’s likely over the next six or seven years. My point, and only point, is that right now if he signed he would be guaranteeing himself more money in just this year alone than he’d make over the next two.

            I could say he’d make more now with an extension + another contract in 4 years versus two tags + a new contract. I wouldn’t be wrong, just like how you’re factually not wrong in what you’re saying, but we wouldn’t be arguing about the same thing. Hopefully that makes sense.

            • Rob Staton

              Wilson won’t care less about guaranteeing more money this year. His goal will be to make as much as possible — which we both agree he can do by biding his time and trying to reach the open market.


        Would one of those teams falling over themselves be the Seahawks? You’ve been pretty adamant that they won’t go to $40 million, yet there’s not much wiggle room between 36 and 40. Are you saying it’s not smart to pay that much, and that you have confidence PCJS are smart enough not to pay it, but that other teams aren’t?

        I ask seriously, this is not a leading question; perfectly feasible position. Just trying to clarify.

        • Rob Staton

          No. I don’t think the Seahawks will offer a ridiculously high contract.

          I can see some other franchises doing it though.

  27. Trevor

    The argument that we have to sign Russ or the team will face years of mediocrity with some mid-level QB makes no sense to me.

    Since Russ signed his extension after the Super Bowl loss that is exactly what the Hawks have been. In 4 years we have not won anything beyond the wild card round and never made the playoffs one year. Three of other years we has a top 5 defense.

    So what am I missing here. I like Russ and think he is a good Q but why should be be the highest paid QB and get paid more than Brady, Rodgers, Brees etc. I know his is the most recent contract to come up but this idea that he has to be the highest paid QB is silly to me.

    If JS can get (3) 1st round picks for Russ I hope he is making that deal immediately if Russ turns down a long term extension for anything more than $28 mil per /yr.

    • King_Rajesh

      28m APY is barely more than Jimmy Garoppolo got for playing less than one season at a serviceable level. It’s barely more than Matt Stafford’s two year old contract. It’s what Kirk Cousins is making.

      Russell is 5-10x the QB than those scrubs. Would you take less than what your worth at your job?

      • Kenny Sloth

        My motto is ‘always be applying’. Why wouldn’t Russ shop himself.?

      • Trevor

        Is he really 5x the QB and should the Hawks over pay him because the Lions and SF both perennial losers overpaid thier QB. The Vikes overpaid Cousins last year and took a step backward. Those 3 guys make my point. THey overpaid thier QB and the team got worse.

        Yes I would take less for my job if myself and my family loved the city we lived in and I enjoyed working with the company and co-workers. Absolutely I would! Particular if the difference was between 35 million or 28 million. I think we would be able to survive.

        I dont blame Russ for wanting to maximize his value. That is his right and good for him if he wants to get all he can get. But in the same breath don’t try to tell me the most important thing to ou is winning because it is not. The most important thing to Russ is maximaizing his income and his brand it is not the Seahawks winning an SB. That is fine and it is also fine for the Hawks to move him and look for a more cost effective alternative as he has proven that he cannot take this team beyond the divisional round of the playoffs when he is paid top tier QB money. How is paying him more going to fix that.

        • Kenny Sloth

          You’d drop 7m just so ur kids wouldn’t have to move schools (not what you said probably slightly disingenuous to ur point)

          7m to switch is always gonna win for me and frankly I question the philosophy of the person that doesn’t jump for 120% salary. Money isn’t everything, but knowing your worth is priceless.

          Also I think it’s way off the mark to say winning comes second to Russell’s brand.

          (Nothing personal Trev, just philosophical differences I guess)

  28. Trevor

    Interesting article Rob and I agree with almost everything except the comparison to Jeter. The only thing similar between Jeter and Russ are the aspirations Russ has of being an owner and maybe that is point you are making.

    Jeter was the ulltimate team first superstar, was never the highest paid player even on his own team most year. Kept his private life private. Never had a contract dispute with the Yankees. Was never questioned by other team mates as a leader etc.

    The whole going on Jimmy Kimmel after the Giants rumour came out was typical passive aggressive Russ and why I don’t think he will ever be truly beloved by most Seahawks fans or his teammates. Everyone respects the talent, work ethic and toughness but there is just something just so unauthentic about him every time he opens his mouth. He is the anti Marshwan Lynch who was loved by Hawks fans and teammates because of his authenticity.

  29. Kenny Sloth

    No less than 3 first rounders.

    I wouldn’t even consider anything less. I’d laugh directly in their faces if they offered less than 3 first round picks. Didn’t St.Louis get 3 first round picks for Robert Griffin? Har har

    And if the franchise tag is placed on him, as a GM, I probably wouldn’t want to trade for him. Dude is gonna require new age $$ and new age draft capital both beyond anything we’ve ever seen. Why give up both when the clock is ticking on his current deal?

    Russ doesn’t seem like the type of guy who wants to spend his life wondering what could have been. He wants the money he deserves and the legacy he deserves. I don’t think he has to be with one team for his whole career to achieve either

    Pete casts a shadow like no other coach in the league imo. He ain’t gonna change and maybe Russ outgrows him.

    The more one thinks on it, the less likely it sounds that Russ would retire a one-team man. The dude lives for new challenges. Sometimes we just gotta kill our heroes

    • King_Rajesh

      “Pete casts a shadow like no other coach in the league imo. He ain’t gonna change and maybe Russ outgrows him.”

      Kenny, you want a real hot take?

      If Russell said that he’d sign a long term deal with the Seahawks but not under Pete Carroll’s regime, I’d fire Pete before I let Russell walk. Finding an elite QB is much harder than finding a head coach that can work with elite talent and you’d get the best coaching prospects who would want to work with Russell Wilson during his prime and make a name for themselves.

      • Rob Staton

        This is getting a little bizarre now.

        I know it was just to illustrate a point but it’s never going to come down to ‘Pete or Russ’.

        • Kenny Sloth


          And the point isn’t really in conjunction with what I meant to imply. Certainly not that there is a disconnect between Russell and Pete. Just that Pete’s system is, by nature, more important than any one player imo.

          The system was always bigger than Marshawn, bigger than Sherman or Bennett, and it’s bigger than Russ.

          Maybe Russ wants a new challenge. Maybe he wants to set some passing records. He seems like that kind of person despite his heretofore adherence to “I’d rather hand it off to the RB” cliches.

      • Kenny Sloth

        Man, if Russ said that, then idk how you manage that ego. I’d be rattled if I was the next guy after Pete.

        It would certainly make the whole organization weaker regardless of personnel change. Just be pathetic kowtowing to a diva employee.

  30. Joe

    Always great reading Rob, thanks for the time and effort.

    Wilson is ‘guaranteed’ about 118 million for the 3 years of franchise tagging. Is six years for 240 million reasonable or crazy? I think you’re spot on about Russell being super ambitious and I think he has a high ‘floor’. Would John & Pete even consider an offer like that? Would Russell accept it? It seems crazy and yet somehow I think that is the kind of deal Russell might accept right now. I can’t speak to any ‘guarantees’ although I’m certain that will matter too.

    Just curious about your thoughts. I think true greatness for these guys does include a vey long time in one location. I can’t imagine Russell will position himself to be ‘blamed’ if he ends up somewhere else.

    • Joe

      I see reading comments and responses that you do not think the Seahawks would do an average of 40mil per year. I finally just had time to read some of them. I cannot speak to the structure of the contract. My thinking is that Russell is ‘guaranteed’ about 118 mil with three franchise tags and that the Seahawks would theoretically do two of them. And if at that point Russell becomes a free agent some team would offer him 40 per year (this is after the 21 season and who can say about the new collective bargaining agreement). What incentive does Russell have to sign now for less than 40? Other than staying with one team, I can’t think of any. He is super ambitious, smart. I believe he ‘wants it all’ and that he can ‘have his cake and eat it too’. 33, 36, 39, 41, 43, 48 add up to 240 and may account for ‘inflation’ and give Russell the biggest craziest most absurd contract ever…
      Honestly, I’m not sayin I’d do it. But I believe that’s what our Russell wants! Biggest craziest and most absurd

      • Rob Staton

        If that’s what he wants, they’ll be drafting a QB next month.

        • Joe

          I suspect we’re in for two tags and then we’ll have to see at that point and that all of this is rosterbation. I guess we shall see if they draft a qb.

        • LLLOGOSSS

          Are we confident the team even knows what he wants? I’m sure they might have a sense, but without negotiating, who can say.

          • Rob Staton

            I bet they haven’t been given a number. Because I don’t think Wilson has a number. I think he’s waiting to see what Seattle offers and then will decide whether to accept or go for the franchise tags and free agency.

            • LLLOGOSSS

              So you think they’ll be engaging at some point between now and training camp? The sense I was getting is that they are afraid to even broach the number for fear of being too far off, knowing that Wilson is going to be borderline unreasonable

              • Rob Staton

                No, I didn’t say that.

                I said I think Wilson is waiting to hear a number from Seattle before making his decision on what to do. Seattle equally is probably waiting to hear a number.

                • LLLOGOSSS


                  So… we’re screwed.

                  Wilson is waiting for the Seahawks; the Seahawks are waiting on him; he’s likely to make the most money on 2+ franchise tags and then free agency, and he knows it; the Seahawks are unlikely to pay him what he could get on the open market…

                  If all those things are true, this is not a good scenario at all.

                  • Rob Staton

                    No I don’t think we’re screwed.

                    It’s just a process.

                    You asked if I think they will engage before camp. I don’t know the answer to that. I’ve given a thought on where I think they are now. Both sides are going to need to compromise at some point to get a deal done. Perhaps, before training camp, something shall bring them together. It’s certainly possible.

                    But if I was to predict what I think will happen — Seattle won’t be able to make an offer that is satisfactory to Wilson’s camp and therefore he will decide to play on the tag going forward until he gets what he wants. That’s my best guess. And the Seahawks will then have a call to make.

  31. JohnH

    The Seahawks have a much better chance of winning the Superbowl paying Wilson $40m APY (or $38m APY fully guaranteed or whatever) than they do with some random scrub QB and a handful of draft picks. Cousins is a mediocre QB and the only reason he got away from the Redskins is how comically inept that organization is.

    Refusing to give your HoF franchise all time great QB who is in his prime a market rate contract is just flat out not a thing that any franchise is going to do. The only exception would be if they knew for a fact they could get a QB they felt would be as good as or better than Wilson.

    The cap inflates massively every year. Deals that are “OMG crazy!” market setting biggest contracts ever look like reasonable middle market deals in 2-3 seasons.

    • Rob Staton

      The two options aren’t only pay Wilson or start a scrub.

      It’s difficult to acquire a really good QB but let’s not make out like it’s impossible to get a good QB. That if the Seahawks traded Wilson they’d be consigned to starting a scrub without question.

      • JohnH

        Even the best prospects have a high failure rate, and #6 is highly unlikely to get the best prospect even in this year with a dearth of high mojo prospects.

        Seriously, you get #6 and#17 and whatever else. Then what? Which QB are you picking/trading for? Haskins? Grier? Trade down for a bunch of 2020 picks so you can tank then move up for Tua or Lawrence? Come on now…

        A franchise QB is the most difficult to acquire, most valuable and important thing a team can have. Trading one instead of paying him is only a good idea with a rock solid right now succession plan.

        So what’s the plan? What are the realistic, right now options? Because I think tanking a year by trading away Wilson without a plan to replace him is just not something PCJS would do.

        • Rob Staton

          I don’t know what the plan would be. But I wouldn’t just assume it’d be a terrible plan or that it wouldn’t work.

          The credibility of my piece and any subsequent comments in here is not dependant on my ability to present a scenario that satisfies you as a long term vision for the Seahawks. I’m talking about the situation with his contract and what might happen. Not pitching a reason to trade Wilson.

          And my original reply still stands. The two options aren’t only pay Wilson or definitely end up with ‘some scrub’ at quarterback.

          • JohnH

            I mean, it’s not like there’s a magic source of franchise QBs that are out there that no one knows about. Either there’s someone in the draft that looks meh but PCJS realizes is actually great, or they’d have to get another team to swap their franchise QB. Wilson is top 3-5 so we’d absolutely be downgrading in that scenario.

            The whole argument is that it’s be better to trade Wilson vs pay him, and I just don’t see a way to do that and not severely downgrade for at least one year.

            • Rob Staton

              I’m not being funny but have you either read the article or any of my subsequent comments? I’ve never argued it’s better to trade Wilson than to pay him.

              Neither have I’ve never claimed there’s a magic source of franchise QB’s out there.

              My only point to you was quite simple. It’s not ‘give Wilson what he wants or start a scrub’. Those are not the only two options.

              • JohnH

                I have read it all, thanks.

                All I’m trying to get at is what, exactly, you think the third option is. You’ve said “those are not the only two options” but you then adamantly refuse to even speculate on what a possible third option might be.

                • Rob Staton

                  I shouldn’t have to speculate. It’s obvious 🤦‍♂️

                  Option 3 is you get a good quarterback. Maybe even a great one.

                  There are many different layers of quality. Seattle isn’t stuck with Wilson or a terrible QB. Come on.

          • Starks

            There’s certainly some smoke to the idea NY is looking to make a big move this year or next. Trading away Beckham clears a lot of space. They might be motivated to do a deal sooner rather than later with Barkley’s cheap rookie deal. I tell you this, RW and Barkley would be a deadly combo.

            I’m not for trading RW, but I don’t see any other way if he wouldn’t even entertain $37m. What it boils down to, is it harder to replace RW or built a team around a player who accounts for 30% of your cap? I also disagree RW is in his prime, I think the years ahead will be a decline. Better to trade him now rather than chase a SB in the next two years when after you lose him for nothing anyways. Just my opinion

  32. mishima

    My bet: Miami.

  33. Coleslaw

    All I can say is I think the Giants are not the team who would trade for Russ. Theres a guy down in (for now) Oakland who is bats*** crazy who is probably drooling at the thought of adding him to his team. Gruden is the NFL equivalent of Charlie Kelly. WILD CARD

    • Kenny Sloth

      “Hi ladies I’m Frak” -Mike Zimmer

    • Hawksince77

      Wouldn’t that be something. The Raiders trade Carr to NY for a first round pick, then send all four to Seattle for RW. But would RW sign long-term with the Raiders?

      • Simo

        Hawks would have to accept that trade deal right away, even though it wouldn’t be popular with the 12’s to trade Russ. A return of 3-5 top picks for a player who may not want to stay, or at the very least plans to leverage every nickel he can from the team, is just to good to pass up!

        Even if Russ doesn’t want to sign a long-term deal with Oakland (or any other place he’s traded), that team still controls him for a minimum of three years (2019 final year of deal + two franchise tags). So, there’s still some degree of certainty for any team thinking of trading for Russ.

        I personally don’t think he gets traded, either this year or ever. Pete/John are trying to build one last contender and trading your franchise QB doesn’t fit that plan.

        The allure of receiving all those high draft picks is real, evidenced by how many on this blog are calling for a RW trade! But, even high draft picks are not guarantees of future success.

        Gonna be interesting to see what happens!

  34. Greg Haugsven

    These QB contracts are absolutely getting out of hand. Puts so much pressure on the team because you just cant be good year in and year out without one. Really does give teams with rookie contract QB’s such an advantage (one that we took advantage of).

    • Greg Haugsven

      You wonder if there is a possible way we could trade Wilson and end up with Murray? Not sure if any other guy this year would be worth it.

  35. Trevor

    Something to think about.

    Russell Wilson Playoff History

    Rookie Contract
    2012 (1w-1L)Win WC Round, Loss Divisonal Round
    2013 (3w -0L) Win Super Bowl
    2014 (2W-1L) Loss Super Bowl

    Signs Huge $ Extension
    2015 (1w,-1L ) Win WC Round, Loss Divison Round
    2016 (1W-1L) Win WC Round, Loss Divison Round
    2017 Missed Playoffs
    2018 (1L) WC Loss

    How did the first big $ extension work out for the Hawks? If I am correct the won an SB with an incredible defense, a dominant run game with Beast Mode and an efficient dual threat QB in Russ who did not turn the ball over and could extend drives with his running.

    That is how Pete envisions his team and wants to play in. That formula does not include or require having the highest paid QB / Player in the league.

    People say we have no choice it is Wilson or some scrub. That is just silly they drafted and developed Wilson they can do it again even if it does take a year or two to find thier guy. The alternative I’d paying Russ a max value deal and suffering under the weight of it for years with the media clamouring about them not having enough talent around him to win and SB like we have seen in GB with Rodgers who is a far better QB IMO.

    • John_s

      I get where you’re going, however if you’re going to mention Russ’s contract you have to talk about the contracts given to Sherm, Earl, Avril, Bennett and KJ too.

      • Hawksince77

        But they aren’t comparable – RW’s contract and those defensive stars you mention. That’s where PC wants to spend his resources – on defensive studs. As I recall, we acknowledged here on the lopsided salaries between offense and defense during the championship runs.

        If RW would accept a reasonable extension – ala Brady – that would be perfect. But all the signs tell us otherwise. Thus the issue. And there is nothing simple about it. Risk all around. It will be fascinating (and telling) how they handle it.

      • Bigten

        And haven’t we talked about how big of a mistake it was to give those players 3rd contracts? I think that just proves the point even further.

    • Barry

      When did Lynch start to get banged up and the D get a little older? The answer is in the second section of your comment.

    • Starhawk29

      Trevor, I’m not sure the “we’ve done it once, so we can do it again” really fits here. Russ was a guy with 1st round traits with the caveat that he was short. It was a market inefficiency that the Hawks took advantage of. Now the 1st overall pick might be a 5’10” QB. Not saying we can’t find a good QB outside of round 1, just that doing so is more likely to give us Nathan Peterman than another Russ. Not sure if you were implying using another later round pick on a QB or not, but in my opinion, unless hes drafted in the top 10, odds are he won’t be too great. Plus the 5 years of controlled contract makes too much sense if we can afford to find our guy in round 1.

      Also, the notion that Russ was a “game manager” early is sort of silly to me. That was the joke right? back in 2012 everyone said he was just a game manager. Turns out he was a top 5 QB (statistically over his career). Did he make every play? No, but we also don’t get to the Super Bowl without him. Don’t forget that he threw a dime to Kearse on 4th down in the NFC Championship game. That score gave us the lead and I’m not sure 90% of NFL QBs make that throw in that situation. Sherm gets all the credit for the tip, but it doesn’t matter if Russ doesn’t make the play.

  36. jb9

    John Ross / Nelson
    Mid round draft pick

  37. Donovan

    If Schneider is really a believer in Kyler Murray and also thinks Wilson is unsignable past the 2021 season, then I’d rather offer him up for the #1 pick than some combo of Giants or Raiders picks that don’t yield us the replacement QB.

    • Bigten

      There isn’t any evidence to show that JS is in love with Murray. And the last thing I would want to do is trade RW to the Cardinals. I’m actually on the trade RW train, because of the points Rob makes, and the fact that success for the Hawks isn’t reliant on having a top5 QB. Football today i don’t see it either. Look at Bama, yes they have Tua now, but before him they were winning with lower tier QBs that play sound football, managing the team as a general. Limiting turnovers. Exactly the stuff Rob has mentioned PC limiting RW to do. I love RW, and when he is at raiders or giants, I will still root for him. Who would replace RWvthis year? No idea, maybe Carr or Manning are included in the trade, not limiting the pics we receive, but allowing those teams to get rid of the salaries. They could bridge us to next year, where we would have more draft capital, in a much better QB class. Manning has won a few super bowls, and Carr was once seen as a above average QB. QBs don’t win championships, teams do.

      • King_Rajesh

        It’s disingenuous to say that Alabama wins with sound football.

        They win because they’re the equivalent of the NY Yankees, and have five-star recruits 3-4 players deep in most positions. They could probably smoke most of the SEC without throwing the ball once because they’re stacked at every position.

        • Rob Staton

          Alabama are exceptionally coached.

          It’d be doing them a disservice to suggest it’s like the Yankees. They dominate because they win in recruiting and coaching.

  38. Steve

    Seahawks are a defense first running team second who need a competent quarterback at the helm.

    Of course having Russell would be preferable – but a tier #1 QB is not essential in Pete’s system.

    If we can get a bevy of draft picks – have JS turn them into even more draft picks and invest in our defense/running game for years to come, I think it has to be considered.

    • Hawktalker#1

      Strongly disagree. A second tier QB will not get the Hawks the success their looking for.

      • Bigten

        We arguably had a second tier QB in RW when we went to two super bowls. No one is arguing Foles or Goff (2/3 Qbs from last two super bowls) are tier one QBs either.

        • Starhawk29

          He may not have been a top 5 guy in terms of stats, but don’t let the narrative control your view of the 2012-14 seasons. He made too many plays to win games to just replace him. I don’t think Russ is the best in the league by any stretch, and he has serious boughts of inconsistency, but at the same time we don’t win either NFC championship without him (though he certainly seemed to try and lose us the one against the packers). Both games he won by making incredible throws. Sherm made the tip, but it was RW’s throw on 4th down that gave us the lead in the first place. RW’s deep ball was still amongst the best in the NFL even then. Just because we won then with a guy who was destined to be a top 5 QB but wasn’t yet doesn’t mean we can win with a better than average QB.

          • Stephen Pitell

            I get your point, but you write as if RW was the only QB who makes those throws, but Foles made great throws for multiple games, and it seems like we commonly made poor QB’s look like great QB’s when our defence was playing poorly for one reason or another.

            I fall in the middle of this argument. A game manager QB could win us a SB if he had a line to play behind. The biggest reason we needed RW and Lynch was because both of them made an average line look better than they were.

  39. Kenny Sloth

    I wonder how much overlap there is between the “never draft an RB in the first round” crowd and the “first round QBs aren’t worth it” crowd.

    Way more 1st round busts at QB than RB. Many of the best young QBs in the league were taken outside of the first frame. Zeke Gurley Barkley have all paid dividends for their squads.

    Cherry picking, perhaps, but when you’re in the orchard . . . .

  40. Comfect

    How much does the CBA have to change for the franchise-tagging pre-CBA-expiration to have different implications? After all, that giant leap in 2022 is only there if the CBA still calls for it. I think the high, high likelihood is at least one tag just to get us to 2020, because I don’t think the current franchise tag system is going to survive that CBA renegotiation.

    • Rob Staton

      According to those in the know, they’re about to simply extend the current CBA. Could be done within the next few months if not sooner.

      • Greg Haugsven

        I also heard that going into the last year of the CBA (next year) you can place both the franchise tag and transition tag on two separate players.

      • 80SLargent

        It’s pretty hard to believe the players would agree to extend a CBA that pretty much hoses them.

        • Rob Staton

          Well that’s what is being reported by multiple reporters. That the CBS will be extended.

          So clearly they don’t think they’re being ‘hosed’.

          And no wonder either… look how much salaries have increased under this CBA. In no way what so ever have they been ‘hosed’.

          • 80SLargent

            The 2011 CBA saw the players reliquish 3% of the revenue sharing (from 50% down to 47%). Last year, that equated to over $420M. Like I said Rob, hosed.

            • Rob Staton

              So what?

              Player salaries have gone up by a lot more than 3% since 2011.

              Stop trying too hard.

              • Stephen Pitell

                Will some things change in this new CBA? I’m thinking the players want cannabis removed from drugs they test for. I’m pretty sure a lot of them use it for pain and recreation.

                • Rob Staton

                  I can only relay what both John Clayton and Jason La Canfora have reported, which is that an extension of the existing CBA is close.

                  I don’t know what minor tweaks might be included but I’d be shocked if there was any shift in the cannabis test.

  41. GerryG

    Big Russ fan, but man I’m not a fan of the whole “I want to be the highest paid player” and that’s all that matters. None of these DEs are breaking the record for highest paid, because they are nowhere near as good as K Mack. Russ is really good, but he’s not the best.

    If that’s the way he wants it, he can play elsewhere and I hope hope hope we can find another QB.

    I’d like to see the new CBA cap salaries as a % of the cap, an salaries are out of control. I know they are the most important position, but it’s getting ridiculous to me. I’m sure 99% of the players would agree a little more distribution would be good.

  42. FresnoHawk

    Fresno state pro day today. All the Fresno State NFL prospects are back in the game! WR Keesean Johnson ran a 4.53 40 yrd. Right there with the best combine performances WR Jamire Jordan 5’10 168lbs ran a 4.41 and had a 42 inch vert. Safety Mike Bell and LB James Allison had good pro days. James Allison & Keesean Johnson are 2 guys to keep an eye on since the Hawks always pick up guys late in the draft/UDFA who perform we’ll at pro days.

    • Kenny Sloth

      I’ve heard some people with REALLY high opinions of Keesean Johnson. Might be a day 3 steal/ udfa gem

      • FresnoHawk

        I just saw on the local news Seahawk scout sitting with other NFL scouts watching cone drills about a dozen scouts sitting tightly together. 19 players participated. Johnson choked at the combine in the 40 but ran in the low 4.5s which should be enough to get drafted.

      • FresnoHawk

        Pretty much same type of player as packers WR Davonte Adams who ran a 4.56 40yrd. At the combine. Broke Adams records at FSU. I’d take him but Seahawks like them faster.

  43. charlietheunicorn

    There was a rumor that J. Houston was in town to visit with the Hawks, however…. no one has been able to verify this rumor. Very intriguing.

    I’ll pass on J Nelson. A quality player past his prime.

    • Rob Staton

      Where’s the rumour circulating?

      (Hopes it’s not just Seahawks twitter)

      • Greg Haugsven

        They mentioned it on 710 today during Bob and Groz. Bob said that Clayton had mentioned it but no one can confirm. I was listening to Clayton’s show today and never heard it so not sure if its true or not.

        • Greg Haugsven

          He would make the most sense if they want to hold on to some comp picks as he is a street FA

      • Shady_Hawkster

        I heard the conversation (I think) Charlie is referring to on 710 this afternoon. Pretty sure it was during the outro of Bob Groz and Tom, when they introduce the next sequence (Groz talking with Danny O’neill). I can’t remember which one said it, but one of them referenced John Clayton talking about Houston visiting Seattle at some point. The other person kind of awkwardly deflected and tried to move on. I was left pretty curious whether this was a simple miscommunication or if it might have been a conversation that wasn’t supposed to go any further.

        I *think* it was Danny asking Groz about it, which would make sense since Groz and JC seem tight, but I’m not certain. The whole 10-20 second exchange was interesting to hear though

      • charlietheunicorn

        I don’t twitter. The President does enough tweeting for all of us combined. 😛

        There was some left over talk on the afternoon 710 show, but everyone couldn’t recall FOR A FACT Houston was visiting. I mean, what else is there to talk about, UW Huskies College Basketball??? LOL

        **They also discussed why Suh hasn’t had any visits or any interest….. when you say, “I loafed for most of the season”, when you were in the playoffs… kind of turned teams off on him. Some randoms thought he would fit in Seattle, but I think he and Burfict are completely off the Seattle radar as adds to the team. Neither fits the team culture they are trying to cultivate.

  44. charlietheunicorn

    I know this would be insane, but would Seattle let RW hit UFA, test the market…
    then try to match the offer he gets? 4 years / 130 or 140 million is not out of the question for some team to offer him…. would Seattle match that type of deal ?

    • Greg Haugsven

      Who says he would let them match it. If hes a UFA its sign and gone potentially.

  45. Saxon

    Man that ridiculous deal the Jets gave to CJ Mosely will probably cost us BWagz. I hope we’re not dumb enough to pay an inside LB $17.5 million per. As great as Wagner is when a non-QB, LT, or DE wants that kind of $$$ it’s usualy better to move on.

  46. Greg Haugsven

    Another thing to look at when it comes to getting to the Super Bowl, is the other 15 teams that you are going against. Do they have an advantage over us when it comes to our high priced QB. Right now really only 4 do.

    Chicago (Trubisky)
    LA (Goff)
    Philly (Wentz)
    Dallas (Prescott)

    The other teams either have QB’s on large contracts or dont have a QB at all.

    • Gohawks5151

      Malik McDowell visiting Cowboys. Good for him I guess. Man I don’t know everything but I don’t think he should ever play.

    • DCD2


      2/3 of the NFC playoff teams
      The team that knocked us out of the playoffs
      The NFC rep in the 2018 SB
      The winner of the 2017 SB

      Is the argument that at least it’s ONLY 4, or that it’s fine to overspend on Russ because most of the rest of the NFC is overspending on their QB if they’re any good?

      • Greg Haugsven

        It was more of a comment saying that most of our competition has a high salary cap hits for their QB’s as well. So things for the most part are equal. Those four teams will have to pay their QB’s large money pretty soon. Dallas, Philly, and LA have gone three years now.

  47. Tony

    Still not worried about it. RW will be resigned or extended this year or next. I will not worry until the 3rd tag decision. Hopefully we draft an awesome QB and not only do I not worry, but I’m fine with any decision.

    • charlietheunicorn

      I think this is where the phrase “control what you can control” comes into the conversation.

  48. C-Dog

    Don’t even know where to begin with commenting on this.

    1. Terrific character analysis on Russell, Rob. The dude is driven unlike most others. He made that clear from his rookie year on. I fully believe he wants and intends to fully maximize his earning potential in this league. What is fully unclear to me is what the Seattle Seahawks under PC/JS intend to do. I can honestly place equal weight on three possible scenarios:

    A. They bite the painful bullet and give him financially wants he wants, possibly at the cost of keeping Wagner, Clark, or Reed.

    B. I can fully see them doing two franchise tags in a row and letting him walk in 2022. I believe I do sense a significant whiff of “short-termism” with PC/JS, possibly more to do with PC. I think that they could see it has having Russell for three more seasons, and that is better than whatever high round picks a team might offer minus some monster blockbuster that is too could to pass up. I can also see them drafting a Grier or someone else to groom in the wings should that QB land to them well after day one.

    C. I can see them dealing RW if the right crazy offer came about, but it would have to wow them. It would have to be something like the one you mentioned in the Giants scenario. However, I’m not confident there is a team out there that would offer such a payload in exchange.

    2. I love Russell Wilson, and I hope he remains the Seattle Seahawks quarterback well into the net decade of football, but I also have to be honest, if I am any part of PC/JS and the New York Football Giants offered me picks 6, 17, and 37, that is good enough for me. I’ll try to squeeze another 2020 high round pick out of it, but I will take that offer. If I can possibly land Rashan Gary, Andre Dillard, Trysten Hill, and Will Grier out of this class, I’m taking that, and hell to the yes I’m calling Indy and talking about bringing in Jacoby Brissett. Not just going to hand the keys to the 2019 Dodge Challenger with a Hemi to a rookie without a good old fashioned training camp QB battle.

    Yes, I am absolutely taking that offer.

    3. I’m not convinced the NYG would make that offer. I’m not really convinced they’d even be all that interested in RW. I thought Pat Shurmur kinda let the cat out of the bag last month when pressed about Murray that his preference is to coach taller quarterbacks, citing a taller QB’s ability to hang in a pocket and see the whole field. How much is he willing to bend his preference for RW? Would Gettleman trade all that capital for a QB that doesn’t fit his HC’s ideals?

    4. I think RW is a great QB in this league, but I also think he is very much an acquired taste. I think he is caviar of NFL QBs. Some head coaches and offensive play callers might look at him and think “fancy” but others might look at him and think ‘fish eggs, gross.”

    5. Of the head coaches that most likely might think “fancy” when it comes to RW, I think the likely ones outside of Pete Carroll are Jon Gruden, Sean Payton, Bill Belichick, Andy Reid, maybe Doug Pederson.

    Reid and Pederson (my old high school QB to name drop) have their franchise QBs. So we can rule them out.

    Brady is probably going to keep playing until he is fifty because of the deal he made with the devil. So BB is out.

    Drew Brees might not have a lot of NFL life left in that arm of his. After 2019, NO could become a trading partner.

    Jon Gruden is the one head coach that I could see make a block buster offer to Seattle more presently.

    6. Here’s my crazy “Rosterbation” trade scenario.

    Oakland Trades Derek Carr to NYC for picks 17 and 37. Shurmur gets the tall QB he prefers, and they keep pick 6 which they could trade down with if they want to gather more day two picks.

    Oakland trades picks 4, 17, and 27 to Seattle for Russell Wilson.

    Seattle has four first round picks to play with. Could land a couple blue chip players with the first two picks, can maneuver the later first round picks to acquire more day two and day three picks.

    Could still come out with a haul looking like

    Rashad Gary
    Andre Dillard
    Trysten Hill
    Will Grier

    Three potential blue chip trench players, and a potential starting franchise QB. Trade for Jacoby Brissett to further cover the bases at QB.

    9. In the end, I’m actually not that overly stressed about this Russell Wilson situation. I think he is going to be in Seattle for probably the next three years, and I am going to enjoy watching him play. I think Seattle will find a successor to groom behind him. Who that is and where and when they will take him or trade for him, I don’t know.

    If by chance Seattle trades RW, and Pete Carroll continues being the head coach, I will trust Pete, and I will look forward to seeing how they build a roster up for another quarterback to take over, even if that means a down season or two.

    I think, at the end of the day, looking at the totality of this organization, I trust Pete Carroll the most. That’s what 2018 Seahawks football taught me. He has a rare ability to coach up talent, and he has a clear formula for how he wants his team to play and win. It garnished him with worldly success in college and here in Seattle. Russell Wilson is not the franchise. Pete Carroll, IMO, is.

    • Barry

      Nice, I agree to pretty much all 9 points. Those trades sound great and practical for the teams involved. I also have the same thoughts on the matter.

      Wilson has been more than I could have hoped for. I just want to get that out of the way. He is the definition of a franchise QB first and foremost durable. There have been many big strong “have it all” kinda guys who have either had their carriers derailed or changed by injury(s).

      *But* if we are taking all things into the equation a trade now not only for the fact that we don’t want to get nothing in return but also the state of the team. We have once again a very solid young core and a strong mix of vets in their prime and a strong running game. Having such a formula is often crucial to the chances of a young talented QB realizing his potential.

      From what I see there is more than just one or two QBs from either the first round or later rounds that can be developed in the same way Wilson has. Again I’m in no way diminishing what Wilson has done or how great of a player he is. But this past year was the first were he got a solid grasp on seeing the slot blitz. Coaching could have something to do with his past struggles just as it had to do with some of his past successes. Also he does and always will have problems with throwing lanes. That’s something that can never be understated just as his abilities to scramble and make plays is a positive that can not be understated.
      All QB’s have strengths and weaknesses and it’s the coaching staffs job to understand that and balance these along with everything else. Wilson is a sharp gritty guy. Us landing him was once in a long while for many fans.

      For those interested and this is not my site but on youtube *caddy to the llama* is great for film watching.

      • C-Dog

        Great points. I think a lot of his game improved with Brian Schottenhiemer’s coaching this last year. Seeing blitzes, keeping his shoulders square while buying time in the pocket, his foot work. It also makes me think that Schotty could bring along another passer. I didn’t feel that way with the previous coaching.

      • Stephen Pitell

        Great comments by both of you guys. I agree. RW will make our future interesting regardless how this plays out. However it does turn out, Pete is the team and not RW. I could have written the bit about Brady probably playing till he’s fifty, because, you know, the deal he made with the devil…..

    • McZ

      While I could see Jon Gruden giving us two his first rounders and another next year, I’m not sure they will go for a big ticket QB before moving to Vegas.

    • King_Rajesh

      If Pete Carroll is the franchise, we have a problem. Pete is an old man that probably only has 2-4 years left. Russell could be here for 10+.

      • Rob Staton

        Why are you framing this as Pete vs Russell. It isn’t.

        It’s also time to stop second guessing how long Pete will continue for. He’s the youngest 67-year-old on the planet.

        • C-Dog


        • King_Rajesh

          Why then are we second guessing what Russell Wilson will do then?

          If one is relevant, the other is too.

      • Stacks

        No. RW has a career trajectory of Michael Vick. Quickly starts his career hot, then ability to win fades with his speed.

        • King_Rajesh

          This has got to be the worst take I’ve seen on this board in the 4+ years I’ve been posting here. Michael Vick? Are you just being racist because both are black? Jesus F. Christ.

          Michael Vick threw more than 20 touchdowns ONCE in his career. Russell Wilson has never thrown less than 20.

          Michael Vick never threw for more than 3400 yards. Russell has only 2 seasons with less than 3400.

          Michael Vick’s career passer rating is 80.4. Russell’s is 20 points higher.

          Michael Vick’s ANY/A is 5.83. Russell’s is 6.95.

          Michael Vick had 14 comebacks in the 4th Quarter and 15 game winning drives over a 13 year career. Russell has 17 4th Quarter Comebacks and 23 Game Winning Drives in 7.

          Michael Vick didn’t even get worse with time, he actually improved when he was in Philly over his time in Atlanta.

          • C-Dog

            Yes to all of this

          • Starhawk29


  49. Nathan W.

    I don’t want to really join the fray in the speculations over RW, but I just wanted to add this. The Broncos won a SB with a largely ineffective Manning at the helm but a ferocious D. We rode Lynch and the D to the SB. Tom Brady and Jared Goff were largely ineffective in this years game. I love RW and he has been the best QB we have ever had in franchise history.

    There are more ways to win than having the highest paid QB ever. Not saying that they are dispensable, but if the vision of the franchise takes a direction away from RW at the helm, I’ll be sad… but its not over. There are options. There are ways the Seahawks can still be competitive and win.

    • Barry

      Well said, good points.

    • Gohawks5151

      Yes Denver did. But it was a bit of a perfect storm. Denver only had to beat NE en route to the SB. And Carolina rode Cam’s career year as far as they could. That’s the randomness of an NFL season. We may not be as lucky if we got back.

    • Shadow

      And the Broncos have done jack squat since SB 50. Just like Baltimore did after their two Super Bowl wins, just like Tampa Bay did after their Super Bowl win, etc.

      You can catch lightning in a bottle and win a Super Bowl without a franchise quarterback, but you need a franchise quarterback to be a consistent Super Bowl contender.

  50. 80SLargent

    Also, there’s seemingly a lot of stuff brandied about pertaining to the contract statuses of the likes of Clark, Reed, and Wagner.
    In case we missed it, Earl Thomas is now a Baltimore Raven. He was the lynchpin of the defense, a generational talent and future Hall of Famer. While it’s nice his saga is over, the statistics say Seattle’s defense is significantly worse without him, and he’s about as irreplaceable as a defensive player gets. Yet here we are, moving on with a comp pick next year and ~$14M/year in cap space.
    All one has to do is look at the Patriots. Just this off season, they’ve let guys like Trey Flowers and Malcom Brown walk in free agency. Are they crying about losing them for nothing but a couple comp picks next year? Nope, they just traded a bag of Frito Lays chips for Michael Bennett (remember him?) and replaced Flowers’ production for like 1/3 of the cost. Then, they’ll likely use a high pick on a pass rusher to develop behind Bennett. Seattle should be making similar moves and preparing to accept an comp pick plus over $17M/year in cap space in the likely event Clark costs too much. Moving on.
    Malcom Brown is a solid player, and his new contract is 3 years/$15M with the Saints. As much as we like to love Reed around here, he’s not 2-3 times the player Brown is. Additionally, it hasn’t served the Seahawks very well spending big resources on their interior D-line. I can completely see them letting Reed walk for the comp pick and the extra $10-15M/year in cap space if that’s what it comes to. Moving on.
    If Seattle was willing to let a guy like Thomas walk, do we really think they won’t let Wagner walk if he wants a bigger contract than C.J. Mosley? Again, this isn’t “short-sighted” or whatever it’s called, it’s a comp pick and over $17M/year in cap space, the Patriot Way. Do we really think they’re getting tired of winning Super Bowls? Moving on.
    The commonality is Belichick and Carroll are both defensive head coaches, and obviously have proved the chops over a long period of time to draft/develop top-shelf defensive talent.
    Do you want to know something else we don’t hear from the Patriots? Talk about trading Tom Brady, but there is talk that they’re going to extend him even though he’s 141 years old. Think about it. Wilson ain’t going anywhere folks.
    Channeling my inner Sonny Weaver Jr., “Russell Wilson no matter what”.

    • Rob Staton

      1. There was plenty of talk about moving on from Brady and keeping Jimmy G before his trade

      2. The Wagner and Earl situations are not comparable and neither are their likely futures in Seattle

      3. Reed is far better than Brown

    • Hawksince77

      So just get RW to sign a team-friendly, Brady-like extension, and it’s all good.

      • Trevor

        That would make everyone happy I think but I don’t thing that is happening with Wilson.

        • Hawksince77


    • C-Dog

      Reed is a far better DT than Brown. Brown lost his starting spot and became a rotation player for the Patriots in 2018.

  51. jb9

    If he wants to be the highest paid after two franchise tags to see what Mahomes gets, then I’m fine with that.

    I don’t understand the logic of trading him. Are they supposed to trade a QB whenever their rookie contract expires if we’re LUCKY enough to find an elite one who’ll be among the highest paid?

    • 80SLargent

      Ask the Browns how hard it is to find a franchise QB.
      Sure, there’s a lot to like about Baker Mayfield, but before him?
      Otto Graham
      Yeah, it’s that hard.
      Just in case it’s not clear, I agree with you.

      • Stinger

        Yeah it’s hard to find a good QB. But it could equally be pointed out that some talent evaluators just flat out suck at their job (the browns for years), fall blindly in love with traits (Bills & Josh Allen), have bad/impatient ownership (browns again). The list could go on, but a handful of teams have consistently found someone good to great plenty. The patriots uncovered Bledsoe, Brady, Jimmy, and Brissett. Panthers, Steelers, Giants, Cowboys, 49ers (their backup QB btw was real impressive) to name a few. I think everyone fixated on the Browns and Jets of the league pointing “look how difficult it is to find a QB” because it’s easier than pointing out the underlying issues that affect the QB selected I mentioned above.

        Would love to hear someone’s comments countering this

    • Barry

      Whos playing on their rookie deal?

      • jb9

        The Seahawks hypothetical elite QB after Wilson. C’mon Bar.

    • Rob Staton

      Nobody has made that argument.

  52. Hojo

    I love that this topic is fair game. It takes guts to make the RW trade if you’re JS / PC and I’d applaud it. As much as I like RW, I agree with the comments that the best chance at a championship in the next 3 years includes a RW trade for multiple high value draft picks / players.

    I think that RW is at his peak as a player and will only command a larger % of the salary cap each year moving forward. As a result, I view his contract as a depreciating asset from a value standpoint (aka sell high). A high volume of quality draft picks in exchange is the opposite. The Hawks could build a dominate D again and continue to invest in and lean on the run game. Go Hawks!!

  53. Sea Mode

    And the media circus rolls on…

    • Stinger

      That’s a good point Ian makes, if we’re going to extend Wilson, better make it happen this off season. Next year Mahomes and Goff will only drive up his price. Personally feel hawks would only be slightly diminished team if they traded Wilson as a run first team. If we need a game manager, sign Eli to a cheap 1 year deal since he’d been cut by the giants post trade.

      • GerryG

        And that is exactly why RW may just play on the tag, and sign after those extensions.

      • mishima

        Maybe I’m missing something, but Wilson would have to be willing to sign an extension. If he doesn’t sign an extension to become the highest paid player in the NFL, he will accept the franchise tag until it is cost prohibitive for the Seahawks, then leave in FA. Hence, the problem and resulting content…

  54. McZ

    I think, it all depends on how the Giants view their team as a whole.

    First, they currently have a as-franchise-as-you-can-be QB in Eli Manning. True, he hasn’t shown anything of that with a team, whose presumed strength was the offense. Still, I don’t think any move for another guy will come until Eli retires. I cannot see this happen this prior to the 2019 draft.

    I would completely forget the idea of them taking a one-time-postseason guy like Carr. In every other city, this would be possible, not so in NY. He’s simply no media guy, which is one of the major complaints about Eli.

    There are two possible solutions to this equation: Patrick Mahomes and Russell Wilson. Fans in NY will never accept an unproven commodity like Mahomes. One postseason win basically proves nothing. Also, never forget about a large part of the celebrity focus coming from women. Here, RW flat out wins.

    So, I guess, there will be a statement from Eli’s part retiring after 2019. Expect this to come two weeks after the draft, because the Giants will want to push cost as far out as possible.

    Then, we will see a lot of chatter, with any team in possession of a franchise QB making clear, that they are prepared to hold on. And RW will be on top of the list.

    What will happen next?
    RW is a special player to PCJS, and playing all those years has created a lot of mutual respect. I just cannot see the current FO laying bricks into Russells future, if leaving is his wish. On the other hand, I cannot see RW wanting to crash his SB-franchise, leaving a bad taste smelling on his career. I think, they will have a very open discussion about the future. And if they conclude, the party’s over, they will work out a way on which both sides profit, together.

    This basically means, a deal to trade him after 2019 season will be worked out prior to the trade deadline 2019. The Seahawks will get the 2020 1st and 2nd, plus the 2021 1st rounder.

    This and the 4-player-problem leaves the 2020 Seahawks in a complete rebuild situation, and the 2019 Seahawks in a win all situation. The comparatively (presumed) easy schedule will absolutely enforce and allow to have one last shot to glory. In this case, having Jordy Nelson for a ride would be perfect.

    • UKAlex6674

      Not so sure about where Mahomes fits in all of this, have I missed something? Like when he became an unproven commodity?!

      Also I don’t understand why the 2019 Seahawks are in a win all situation? They aren’t getting any additional picks from NY this draft according to the above.

      It’s a no from me Jim.

      • McZ

        The point I make is, that if the Giants want to take on a new franchise QB, RW could find himself on top of their list. I suspect, they will wait until after the 2019 draft to make any move, plus they will make sure, there is no Eli M fallout. If they then approach RW, there is a better than 50% chance RW wants to move on. If that is the case, I cannot see the Seahawks FO enforcing RW playing on a franchise tag. The mutual respect between RW, PC and JS will lead to a solution, where RW will be traded to the Giants after the 2019 season.

        In this case, the 2019 season is the last hooray of the RW era in Seattle, with a possibility to win it all.

        You will recognize, that this whole thing will leave the Seahawks FO without much control, but Rob has made clear, that this is the case anyway.

  55. ZB

    I think it comes down to do we think we can win another super bowl or two while at the same time paying RW a quarter of the team budget every year….or is it more likely we can draft another young QB with a small 4-5 year small deal and stack the defense and roll that way. This is a huge decision for JS/PC and if they decide to go the young/cheap QB route they better do it soon or we will end up losing RW and get basically nothing in return.

    Are there any teams willing to trade 3 first round picks or more for RW? If not should we take less knowing we will end up with nothing in a few years?

  56. Trevor

    This conversation about Wilson really got me thinking about what made the Seahawks great and brought a super bowl to Seattle.

    When PC/JS came in they create a culture based on fun, competition and letting guys be themselves and play to their strengths.

    They churned the roster at record levels bringing in basically anyone and everyone who was available. The assembled a bunch of hungry dogs with a chip on their shoulder the size of Mount Everest. Then he added guys like Marshawn and Bennett etc. with big personalities that were not known for towing the corporate line.

    They were a bunch of outspoken, authentic misfits but they were all very similar with a sort of anti-establishment and structure vibe. The results were incredible and I think the Super Bowl Team was the most physically dominant team on both sides of the ball in the history of the game. They didn’t beat you will skill they beat you speed, aggression and toughness. Teams were beat up physically and mentally when they played Seattle.

    They drafted Russ and he came in an under sized 3rd round pick from Wisconsin that everyone thought had no shot after the Hawks just signed a free agent QB. He seemed to fit right in with this whole underdog and chip on his shoulder. Won the starting spot and was the key final piece to take the team over the top as guy who did not turn the ball over and could generate explosive plays. He was basically the perfect compliment with Beast Mode and that ridiculously good and deep defense.

    When the won the SB the whole Russ as an underdog and being one of them kind of started to just fade and he became of Corporate non stop Cliché speaking Russ we have today.

    That was the beginning of the end of the LOB and what could have been incredible 3-4 year run IMO. That collection of players of guys (Bennett, Beast Mode, Sherm etc.) was never going to have respect or be on board with some guy they viewed as a fake corporate yes man who was all about building his brand first and foremost.

    I could never understand why the Hawks had such a hard time moving on from the SB loss and interception. After all stuff happens and there are plays that cost you games you move on. But it was so much deeper than that. This team built on the back of a bunch of authentic anti-establishment tough as heck guys already had lost respect for Russ and his antics then they felt betrayed by Pete when he chose to put the ball in the hands of Russ instead of their guy Beast Mode. The rest is well documented history as we all know as Hawks fans.

    That Hawks Super Bowl team is what Pete wants. A tough bully of a team on both side of the ball that physically dominates the other team on both sides of the ball. With running the ball and stopping the run being a foundation. We saw it last year. He does not want a QB throwing the ball 30-40 times a game. He wants a QB who can deliver explosive plays down the field, manage the game and not turn the ball over.

    Why in the world would an organization with that philosophy and goal pay a QB 20% + of their salary cap. It make no sense IMO. To make matters worse I don’t think a QB with the off field goals and objectives of Russ can ever truly lead the type of men it takes to have that type of team.

    I have always enjoyed Russ immensely as a player on the field and his toughness and durability is unrivaled IMO but the off field stuff is just cheesy and he comes across as so fake (ie: recent Kimmel Interview) that I have never been ever been able to love him as the QB of this team.

    I had always just assumed Russ would be out QB for the next 10 years because PC/JS kind of seemed to hitch themselves to that wagon. Now I am not so sure anymore. Daniel Jeremiah said this week that the Hawks were a surprise team that was doing an incredible amount of work on this QB class.

    Personally I hope they use this opportunity to move on from Russ and truly get back to that culture that made the team great and so much fun to watch because I don’t see anyway this team ever wins an SB with Russ taking 20% + of the cap space.

    • ZB

      I’m leaning your way of thinking as well. We just might be better off getting as much for Russ as possible right now as try and get maybe Tua Tagovailoa from Alabama next year in the draft.

    • Rob Staton

      All I’ll say is… there’s a reason why JS has been at every QB pro-day for the last two years and continues to make those trips now. There’s a reason he was at Oklahoma vs West Virginia in person.

      The Seahawks are very aware of the dilemma facing them. They could get a deal done with Wilson for sure. But anything and everything is on the table at the moment. And simply paying Wilson $40m as some have suggested will not be the solution.

    • King_Rajesh

      Pete Carroll will likely never be able to rebuild a team like the Super Bowl team again. He had inside knowledge of all those players, most of whom he scouted from before high school.

      Since 2014, our drafting has regressed to the mean. Why? Because Pete ran out of insider information from the college ranks after 4 years of being in the NFL. They’ve hit on too few picks since then, and the picks they have hit on, they have to pay now (Lockett got paid, Clark, Reed still outstanding). There’s not enough cheap rookie talent all on cheap deals.

      Pete has talked for a while about becoming the bully again, but I don’t see the Seahawks ever getting back to being the bully when they don’t have enough young talent to bring that brash desperation that you see in other ascendant teams. Maybe in 2020 when they have enough draft stock to bring in a healthy class?

      • Rob Staton

        This is an overstated point.

        For starters, they drafted Clark and Lockett in 2015. Drafting regressed, did it? How about Jarran Reed in 2016? How about Chris Carson in round seven? Or Tre Flower in round five? Etc etc.

        I’m reading a lot of people who sound like they’ve given up. That nothing in the world is possible without Russell Wilson.

        • King_Rajesh

          Rob, it’s not that they haven’t hit on picks – Clark and Lockett are great picks. But they aren’t enough. They need MORE hits.

          In 2010 they hit on Okung, Earl, Tate, Walter Thurmond, Kam, and Anthony McCoy. 6 players that would go on to help the team push for a Super Bowl.

          In 2011, they hit on Carpenter, KJ, Sherman, Maxwell, and Malcolm Smith. 5 players.

          In 2012, they hit on Irvin, Wagner, Wilson, Sweezy, Scruggs, and Lane.6 players including the most important position – QB.

          Contrast that with 2014: Justin Britt; 2015: Clark and Lockett; 2016: Ifedi, Reed, and Vannett.

          It’s not enough. 2017 and 2018 are too early to tell if they actually drafted anyone good, but the first two picks in 2017 look like busts already.

          To your second point, I saw my first Seahawks game in 1995. December 3, we beat the Eagles the day before my birthday – my dad is from Philly so he took me to that game. It was in the Kingdome and it make me a Seahawks fan for life.

          I watched this team struggle for over 15 years to find a QB. Watched us squander hall of fame talent. We got lucky and rode three hall-of-fame level talents to get us to the Super Bowl (Big Walt, Hutch, and Alexander) and we lost. That was the highlight of the 16 years I was a fan of this team.

          Then, we find the QB of our dreams and prayers – a QB that elevated the team out of the moribund franchise we were into the franchise we are now. And people want to let him go? Over money??? It makes no sense. I’ve seen what Pete can do without Russell (7 wins). I’ve seen what this franchise can do without Russell (8 playoff wins in franchise history without Russell, 8 playoff wins with Russell; 5 seasons in franchise history with 10 or more wins without Russell, 6 seasons with 10 or more wins with Russell).

          Do you really trust Pete Carroll and John Schneider to identify and draft another QB? I don’t. Their track record is appalling. They traded for CHARLIE WHITEHURST. They signed TARVARIS JACKSON. They traded and gave a $26 million dollar contract to MATT FLYNN. Russell was their lottery ticket win, and they haven’t been able to find any other talent to back him up either.

          If we trade away Russell and draft some scrub like Grier who will sit out a bowl game to try and boost his draft stock but then stink up the Senior Bowl anyway, we’ll be right back where we started in the 90s, putting our hope in scrubs like Rick Mirer.

          • Rob Staton

            You said they’ve fallen off as a drafting team. No they haven’t. They hit on Earl and Okung in 2010 with top-15 picks. They’ve only had ONE top-15 pick since (Bruce Irvin, 2012). They hit on Golden in round two that year. That’s it for 2010. In 2015 they landed Clark and Lockett in rounds two and three. They also took Mark Glowinski that year, who’s carved out a decent career for Indy. It’s at the very least comparable. You’re just writing off the Reed, Carson etc picks because it doesn’t match up to 2011. Nothing ever will. Realize it.

            Did they have exceptional drafts in 2011 and 2012? Yes. Do we have any right to expect that to keep happening over and over again? No. Have they made some good picks and is it time to dump this false premise that they’re now bad at drafting? Yes.

            And yes, I do trust Pete and John. I’m certainly not writing them off like you.

            • King_Rajesh

              Why trust Pete and John with the QB position? Blind faith? Russell was their lottery ticket. They might not get lucky again.

              They’ve shown no aptitude at evaluating QB talent either in trade, drafting, or free agency. It’s not hard to kick the tires on players you can’t draft (e.g., Mahomes) but the players that they have brought in for the QB position, outside of Russell, have been objectively awful during Pete and John’s tenure.

              • Rob Staton

                Why trust them?!?!

                Because they drafted the franchise’s best ever quarterback…. in round three.

                You seem to have forgotten that when you write ‘They’ve shown no aptitude at evaluating QB talent’. What a weird thing to say.

                • King_Rajesh

                  Come on Rob, there’s no need to twist my point when its pretty clear:

                  Outside of Russell, the players that they’ve brought in have been objectively awful (e.g., Tarvaris, Whitehurst, Flynn, Davis, Boykin). Russell Wilson was them winning the lottery. They’ve shown no aptitude at evaluating QB talent, either in trade, drafting or free agency, outside of the one time they got lucky with Russell Wilson.

                  They might not get lucky again. Why do it when we still have Russell?

                  • Rob Staton

                    Davis was a one year FA backup! Boykin an UDFA one year backup!

                    You’re going to use THAT as the basis to judge their QB judgement, not the Wilson pick?

                    Come on man.

                  • GerryG

                    Seems to me they were one of the teams that knew Mahomes was “it”.

                    They brought in the guys they had an opportunity to bring in. We don’t know what their evaluations were on players they couldn’t get.

                    Im not basing their QBB scouting prowess on the flier they took on Whithurst, or the backups they brought in.

      • C-Dog

        IMO, the 2018 Seahawks took some significant steps forward to a bully mentality again, especially with their run game.

    • H

      I’m fine with what Rob is saying in the article; “this is what they might be forced into doing.” Where I draw the line is the suggesting it’s something they’d be better off doing.

      The SB seasons where the culmination of three consecutive ridiculous drafts, all who were still on rookie deals in 2013, as well as some spectacular bargain basement FA shopping. It was not spending massive money on outside FA due to cap savings at QB.

    • C-Dog

      A lot of great points here, Trevor.

  57. SeventiesHawksFan

    Very curious reading all of these trade Russell scenarios. I very strongly doubt Russell gets traded. The deal is likely to be not more than $37 mil per season for five years.
    Mans the bigger *issue* will be how much is guaranteed.

    The $52 million on the franchise tag in the final year is a chimera. Seattle will deal him before paying that if Russell doesn’t sign a deal. So Russell’s TRUE earnings potential for the next three years with the Seahawks is more like $90 million.

    Meaning he can make far more by signing a contract. And also have the guarantees.

    The front office wants assurances that Russell will commit to an improved offseason conditioning program.

    The Russell’s camp wants to see a commitment to fielding an O line that will protect his longevity plus winning more championships. And of course they want Russell to get paid.

    • Rob Staton

      Let me make these very important points because I don’t want anyone to misunderstand the point of this piece…

      1. The $52m franchise tag in 2022 is a chimera. Seattle won’t pay it. But that’s really the point. They have until the end of 2021, and probably earlier than that, to get a deal done. In fact as soon as you start the 2021 season if he’s still on the tag he’s going to be a free agent. So yes, there is a two-year window here where you either sign him or trade him. Nobody would ever suggest they will pay him the $52m. The point of referencing it is because it acts as a tipping point for his potential departure and he WILL use it at least initially in negotiations. Because he can say to the team, ‘I am happy playing on the tag. I will do a Kirk Cousins. And by 2022 if you haven’t met my demands I will be a free agent.’

      2. What I have written in this piece is not a trade scenario or a proposal. It’s an attempt to decipher what the Giants are planning and how it might relate to Wilson and the Seahawks. I am not saying, ‘this is what the Seahawks should do.’ I’m not saying you’re making this error, but some are. This isn’t a ‘trade Wilson’ piece. It’s a piece looking at the situation with open eyes and not assuming everything will be fine. As that would be a mistake, IMO.

      3. I hope you’re right on the $37m number but the reality is there’s every chance Wilson doesn’t even have a number in mind. If he’s willing to play on the tag, he’ll max out his earnings. He might not have any interest in signing an extension unless it blows him away. And the Seahawks probably aren’t interested in a mind-blowing offer just to satisfy his massive demand to avoid going down the road of the tag. And that creates a scenario where they have to look at the bigger picture and make a call.

      • SeventiesHawksFan

        I didn’t think I was criticizing your reasoning. Just adding that point. And it’s rather salient to understanding Russell’s true earnings scenario for the next three (or even five) years, only two years of which are ‘guaranteed’. The upcoming season at $25 million. And it’s a virtual guarantee the he will be franchised the following year.

        After that all bets are off, especially in the event of serious injury or decline in athleticism that starts a perceptible arc that reduces his perceived value.

        Russell stands to make far more by signing a deal WITH the guarantees. The team will probably have guarantee four of five seasons. And that will be the true ‘sticking point’ once $35 to $38 mil (at most) per season is agreed to.

        The point being that the team is in fine position to give Russell more than he would in reality make playing on the tag. Along with the guarantees. They do have some leverage and a carrot to offer still

        And what I was finding more ‘curious’ was the various trade Russell scenarios being postulated in the comments. They’re curious to contemplate. And full of drama. But they’re also still rather unlikely. And not reflective of front office thinking.

        If Pete has any intentions to coach beyond his recent contract extension, then he had every reason to also get Russell signed. And I doubt he wants his legacy with the franchise to be that he traded Russell
        in his prime for some picks.

        This is a front office that has proven over and over again that it doesn’t value top picks over (perceived) proven talent. Trading Russell is a last resort possibility. After all efforts are exhausted. It’s not going to happen this offseason. And I doubt it will even come to that.

        • Rob Staton

          Russell will not make more money signing a deal with guarantees with the Seahawks in 2019.

          He will make a LOT more money playing on two tags and then reaching the open market.

          Not even a close run thing either.

          It just feels a little bit some times like people are so unwilling to consider the situation with an open mind because the concept of a future without Wilson is unappealing.

          • SeventiesHawksFan

            How does that math work out?

            Russell playing on franchise tags for next five years if EVERYTHING works out is:

            25 + 30 + 36 + ~40 (new deal with new team) + ~40 = 170 million. With only two (maybe three) years ‘guaranteed’ if there’s no injury.

            That’s an average of 34 million per season for all five seasons. Or 36.5 million per season for the four seasons after this one.

            Take your pick which number matters to you. But those are the TRUE top end numbers for the next five years playing on the tag.

            Hence $36 to $37 million per season WITH guarantees should get a deal done.

            The Seahawks are in fine position to make Russell an offer that gives Russell a deal that both pays him more than he’ll make in the tag and which gives him security.

            The real *issue* is going to be length of contract and the guaranteed portion. Topping out at $38 million per year is highly likely.

            • Rob Staton

              Your numbers are wrong. His third franchise tag alone is worth over $50m. His fourth tag would be practically an entire teams salary cap

              • SeventiesHawksFan

                But the team will never pay the $52 million third year tag. So including it in Russell’s earnings potential is irrelevant. Because it’s not money he can ever hope to make.

                So the true number to use is the money Russell make on a new contract with a different team after playing two seasons on the tag with us. Or around $40 million.

                Politely asking how these numbers are ‘wrong’?

                The assumption that anyone will pay RW $52 million starting three seasons from now needs to be set aside. It’s not happening. Under any circumstances. And his camp would have little to no leverage even trying to make the argument.

                Russell Wilson’s MAXIMUM true realistic earnings potential for the next FIVE years is around $170 million. IF he plays through the final year of his deal, two years of the tag, and the first two years of a new deal with a different tram. That averages to $34 million per year.

                That means the team effectively has the power to hold Russell’s max earnings potential to no greater than an average of $34 million per year for the next five years. Just by keeping him here for three more years then letting him go.

                Not that we should expect it to come to that. But the team has more leverage than is being recognized. They have the ability to keep Russell here for three years. And keep his max earnings for five years maxed out at $34 mil average per season. That’s just the start reality of rules, math and market pricing all coming together.

                Which is why no more than $37 to $38 million per season with guarantees should get the deal done. Unless the RW camp becomes determined no matter what to get to a different market.

                • Rob Staton


                  I never said the Seahawks would pay the third tag. The point of raising the third tag is 1. To highlight the tipping point of negotiations because that’s when he will reach free agency and 2. To highlight Wilson’s ability to leverage the Seahawks with that overly expensive tag and the inevitability of them having to let him reach FA if it gets to that point.

                  Your numbers are wrong because you listed how much he would earn on “five tags”. He would earn much more on five tags than you suggested.

                  And I’ll say it one more time. You cannot limit his potential earning like you are. If he reaches free agency, which he WILL do if he’s tagged twice, he will earn a MEGA deal way beyond what you are suggesting. Just look how overpaid CJ Mosley was. You don’t think teams would overpay for Wilson? He’d blow away your $34m a year projection out of the water. And all after earning $66m on two franchise tags.

                  There is NO scenario other than the Seahawks offering him a ridiculous salary (that they won’t offer) that will beat what he earns on two franchise tags and then hitting the market. None. Which is why if he’s going to stay in Seattle, both parties need to compromise. And my whole point all along has been I think, with great confidence, that Wilson will be prepared to bet on himself to max out his earnings.

                  • SeventiesHawksFan

                    Respectfully Rob,

                    I’ve used the following numbers for the next FIVE seasons:

                    2019: 25 million. Final year salary on contract. Below market cap hit due to bonus spread over life of contract.
                    2020: 30 million on the first franchise tag
                    2021: 36 million on the second franchise tag.

                    2022: ~40 million start of new deal with new team. Russell is 33 years old. Signs 4 to 6 year deal. For ~$40 million per season. 3 to 4 years guaranteed.
                    2023: ~40 million 2nd year of new deal with new team.

                    That adds up to $170 million over the next five years. $170 million. $34 million on average per season.

                    Even if you think Russell will get a $45 million per year ‘mega deal’ in three years his total MAX compensation for the next FIVE years is still $180 million. Which averages $36 million per season.

                    And only IF EVERYTHING breaks Russell’s way. Including signing a ‘mega-deal’ paying him $45 million per season (not going to happen but let’s go with it for the sake of illustration ).

                    The Seahawks absolutely CAN hold Russel’s total pay below $36 million per season over the course of the next five seasons EVEN IF he signs the ‘mega deal’ you postulate after playing on two tags.

                    Yes he’d made money beyond the next five years on a new deal with a new team. But that option exists for Russell whether he re-signs with Seahawks or or. Ahd it’s so far into the future that it’s hypothetical.

                    No matter how you add it up, the stark reality is that the outside MAXIMUM Russell can make over the next FIVE SEASONS by playing out two tags ahd them hitting the market is absolutely controlled mostly by the Seahawks. Because of this year’s salary plus two the tags. This gives them leverage.

                    $36 million per season plus guarantees on a five year deal matches the very best Russell can hope to make playing on the tag for two more seasons beyond this one plus the first couple years of signing the ‘mega deal’. It is what it is.

                    And lastly at no point did I assume more than two years of franchising Wilson. Anything beyond that has to be disregarded. Because it’s not money he’s ever going to make. The team will just let him go if it comes to that. Which it won’t come to that anyway. Five years under $37 million with guarantees should get the deal done. The real issue will be the guaranteed portion.

                    • Rob Staton

                      Wilson is not going to take two tags and then agree $40m for the next two years. Because the minute he signs that second tag, he is months away from hitting the market. There is 0% chance that he agrees to play on the second tag and then agrees a deal for $40m for the next two years.

                      And when he reaches the market, he will get MORE than $40m. Because he will turn to desperate teams determined to land him and say… “I earned $36m last year on the tag. I want a massive deal”. And he’d get it. Because he’s a free agent franchise quarterback. $45m would be a modest estimate. Did you see what CJ Mosley got on the open market? Who realistically out there thought he’d get $17.5m a year from a desperate team? You don’t think teams out there would pay Wilson a mind-boggling amount? There would be a riot to get him (not that it’ll ever get that far because they’d trade him before it did).

                      The concept of a plan that includes two tags and then $40m a year is more unrealistic than him signing for $30m a year tomorrow.

                      And even then, it’d STILL be less than two tags and what he’d get on the open market.

                  • DCD2

                    Look at the numbers again Rob. He isn’t ‘wrong’.

                    He’s using his current salary, two years on the tag and a projected part of a new salary at $40m.

                    The big point that I believe that he’s trying to make is that years 2 & 3 are going to average $33M on the tag and that if we extend him prior to that at anything over $33M, we are adding to his bottom line through 2021. Say it’s $37M… it would mean he’s $8M ahead of playing on the tag. If the deal goes two more years, he’d have to think that he’d do better than $41M/yr on the open market to be breaking even.

                    Correct me if I’m incorrectly speaking on your behalf 70’sHF.

                    • Rob Staton

                      See my reply. The scenario is unrealistic. Wilson is not playing on two tags then agreeing a deal at $40m a year. If he gets to the second tag, he’s going to the market.

                  • DCD2

                    There’s the disconnect, I think.

                    Seems that 70’sHF was assuming that his next contract after the tags would average $40M, where you see it as more like $45M… which would mean he’d essentially make back what he ‘missed out on’ within just over a year.

                    • Rob Staton

                      I haven’t used the $45m figure. I have no idea what his contract would be on the open market.

                      But he won’t accept $40m after earning $36m in 2021… months before hitting free agency. If it ever gets that far he’s testing the market. And he’d get a mega offer.

                      I’ve said over and over again — they have two years to get a deal done. If it gets to a second franchise tag, he’s going to be a free agent in 2022 unless they trade him.

                  • DCD2

                    I think he’s just saying what the potential for RW to make over the next five years. I don’t think he’s even suggesting that the Hawks be the ones to give him the $40m, (he said “new deal, new team”) just that it could be what he would make.

                    If that number is closer to $45M or more, the math falls apart pretty quickly.

                    • Rob Staton

                      What he’s been trying to argue is that he’d make more money signing with the Seahawks. But that isn’t true. He will make more money playing on the tag and reaching the market.

                  • DCD2

                    “And he’d get it. Because he’s a free agent franchise quarterback. $45m would be a modest estimate.” was what you just said.

                    Look, I agree with you that he’ll make more money playing the tags and hitting FA. I was just trying to clear up what looked like confusion. You were saying he’s going to the market and 70’s was assuming the market to be $40M.

                    To me that’s where this falls apart. I doubt that RW’s camp would assume that $40M is the most they’d get, and therefor sign a multi-year contract just in order to gain a bit more in the next 2 years, only to be getting below market after that.

                    • Rob Staton

                      That was in response to the suggestion of $45m already proposed. I wasn’t pitching that number.

                  • SeventiesHawksFan

                    I suppose we can agree that Russel ‘beating the math’ means he would play through this season plus two more on the tag.

                    And THEN sign a ‘mega deal’ at greater than $45 million per season after that. Anything less than $45 million per season on a new deal with a new team after three more years with the Seahawks would mean that his next five year salary average would be LESS THAN an average of $36 million per season for the next five years.

                    So in order for Russell to receive greater than $37 million per season averaged out over a five year period, he has to play through this season plus two tags. And then sign a deal with greater than three years guaranteed at $45 million per season with a new team.

                    Okay. We can agree there.

                    If you think anyone is going to give Russell a $45 million dollar deal by then well okay. But that’s also not going to happen either. There is a ceiling to what will be paid for Russell by his preferred market teams who hope to also contend.

                    Maybe a suuuuper desperate team would give him $45 plus. With guarantees. But the preferred markets of NY and LA won’t.

                    So it still makes sense to also stay in an also preferable market in Seattle on $37 million or less. Which is the max he’ll make over the next five seasons anyway.

                    • Rob Staton

                      Yes it will happen.

                      Someone will pay him a mega contract. He’d be the greatest QB to reach free agency in my lifetime. In the period between now and then, Mahomes will have received his second contract. And you honestly think he wouldn’t get paid a mega deal without ANY draft pick comp to pay?

                      Come on man. I’m done with this.

    • cha

      “The front office wants assurances that Russell will commit to an improved offseason conditioning program. ”

      Where’s that coming from?

      From an outsider’s perspective I’d judge RW’s offseason work as excellent.

      • SeventiesHawksFan

        Russell’s offseason conditioning has been far from
        excellent the past few seasons. It’s just not something the media talks about.

        The year he got hurt he did virtually nothing or at least bare minimum as far as conditions goes. And he does feel partially responsible afterward for not being in playing condition to take the hits.

        He did meet Ciara that offseason. He was quite otherwise occupied.

        Feel free to take the above as ‘rumor’. But I do know exactly what I’m talking about. Just can’t say here how I know it.

  58. Ryan

    Hey, look who comes in second in 538’s analysis of 2019 quarterback prospects: Will Grier.

    • Rob Staton

      Murray #1
      Grier #2

      As we’ve been saying.

  59. Volume12

    What. A. Thread.

    • Rob Staton

      This is the tweet that caught my eye:

      Wesco, Jennings rising. Had them in R3 and R4 to Seattle respectively in the last mock because they stand out BIG TIME as Seahawks-type players. Wonder if they’ll even be there for them?

      Also has Terry McLaurin rising but we’ve known that for a long time.

      • Volume12

        Tough to say. It’s hard to get a gauge on quite a few of these guys.

        When Pete was discussing TEs at the combine it was interesting he mentioned Fant’s name there with that group.

        McLaurin is a guy that I’d be willing to bet has crushed his IV’s w/ teams.

        The one that I was personally drawn to was the fact this class is thought to have such a high bust potential.

  60. Greg Haugsven

    Mychal Kendricks contact details:

    Base salary $2 million
    Training camp bonus $250k
    Week 1 Roster bonus $250k
    Per game roster bonus ($125k with 4 likely to be earned) $500k

    Top 51 Cap Hit $3 million

    No guaranteed money.

    I have a feeling if he gets cleared to play it might be over for B Mingo.

  61. Volume12

    12 years, $430 mil. That’s what, $35 mil w year?!?

    • ZB

      You want to go 12 years and no SB appearances?

      • Greg Haugsven

        Mike Trout getting paid.

    • Kenny Sloth

      *Top paid soccer players laugh hard*

  62. ZB

    I’m wondering why any team that needs a QB would ever want to trade for RW knowing they would have to give up like 2 years 1-2 round draft picks? And then pay RW 35-4k million per year. It really doesn’t make much sense to me if I were an owner or GM to do such a thing. Isn’t the best scenario to draft a QB in the first round and have him on a cheap deal for 4 years so that you can actually have a enough money to pay other good players? I honestly don’t see us ever getting back to the SB with Russ if his take is 25% of our cap. 1 and done in the playoffs ever so often….maybe.

    • Rob Staton

      It depends where you are as a franchise.

      • ZB

        So Rob, what team in the NFL (if you were the GM) should trade 3 plus picks for RW and pay him 35-40 million a year?

        • Rob Staton

          Obviously I don’t know specifically which teams.

          But is there likely to be teams that would do? Yes, of course.

          Like I said, it depends where you are as a franchise. It’d be wrong to assume nobody would be willing to do it though. A team spent two first rounders and a big salary (for the time) on Carson Palmer. The idea that someone would pay three high picks and a salary for Wilson is not unrealistic.

          • ZB

            Off the top of my head I can think of 3 QB’s in the recent past that have garnered a first round pick plus later picks…Jay Cutler. Sam Bradford and Carson Palmer. I may be wrong but it just doesn’t seem like teams are willing to do trades like this. Very. Very rare indeed. You said there would be teams “likely” to do so. Not too confident on my part.

            • Rob Staton

              Well you’re wrong if you don’t think teams will do this.

              Just because it doesn’t happen often is irrelevant.

              There will be teams out there who are very, very willing to trade picks and a big salary to acquire Russell Wilson.

              • ZB

                Well I suppose since neither of us are in a front office position we’ll just have to see.

                • Rob Staton

                  I don’t have to be in a front office to know teams would be VERY willing to acquire Russell Wilson

            • Eli

              Thinking about it logically it’s likely because teams don’t trade franchise-level QB’s. Would a team trade for one? Yes, absolutely. There’s zero doubt about it. But would a team be willing to trade away one? There’s not a lot of data points suggesting they would.

              • ZB

                You can look at this a entirely different way. Just saying.

    • Volume12

      I’m so confused recently.

      Not saying this is you, but a lot of current fans give me this impression:

      ‘Let’s trade good players for draft picks, hope to turn those draft picks into good players, but not sign any of those good players because we’ll need $ to pay good players that become available in FA even though we aren’t willing to pay our good players in the 1st place.’

      • Rob Staton

        I’m not sure why you’re saying that V12. I haven’t seen any of that.

        I’ve seen a lot of people saying they’d rather not lose players (eg Earl) for peanuts. So in the future, if they KNOW they’re going to move on from a player — try and get value before they move on. And people have looked at Frank Clark potentially leaving for at best a R3 comp pick in 12 months time and have discussed the idea of getting better value this off-season.

        Likewise people are having a conversation about Wilson not because people want rid of him — but because they see a potential impasse where the player and the team don’t get close and we’re two years away from a potential divorce. So either come to a compromise (both parties) or consider the alternatives.

        There are also some people who, not unfairly, think giving one player 25% of the salary cap isn’t wise. I don’t agree with it but it’s a fair debate to have.

        These are very different positions than the one you’ve painted.

        • Hawksince77

          Very fair summary, IMO.

        • Kenny Sloth

          3rd round comp pick for Russ is breaking even on investment tho haha

          • Sea Mode

            😂 Kenny for GM! (of the Giants, that is…)

            • Kenny Sloth

              First order of business; Trading Saquon to the Seahawks for a 4th

              This is Goldens team now

      • mishima

        We are willing to pay our good players, but our good players are forgoing the security of extensions for a chance at free agency. Clark, this year, Reed, next. If the Seahawks aren’t pro-active and get ahead of this trend, they’ll be forced to ‘pay good players that become available in FA’ and that’s a bad thing, IMO.

        I just hope the Seahawks return to building through the draft, finding value in free agency and start getting ahead of pending free agency.

        That said, I expect more players to bet on themselves and more NFL teams to lose great players after 1st contracts.

      • Kenny Sloth

        Some seahawks fans be talkin in ciiiiircles

        Don’t trade Russ because we are bad w first round picks anyway but don’t keep him bc a QB can’t make up half of the salary cap

        Trade up in the first using next year’s picks because we’ll clean up in udfa anyway better to get one maybe good player than 3 maybe good players”

        like WHAT?

  63. GoHawksDani

    I might be a bad dude, but I love rosterbation. It’s just pure fun, and with so many options it’s hard not to roam wild sometimes.
    OK…if we’d trade Russ, I think our focus should be defense again.

    How could be this team one that only receives 16 PPG avg MAX?

    DL: Clark and Reed are solid. I’d need another solid DE (setting the edge, 7-10 sacks). I’d need a solid DT next to Reed that is golden against the run and can rush the passer a bit (5-7 sacks)
    DL depth is solid (Green, Martin, Ford, QJeff, Naz)

    LB: BWagz, KJ, Kendricks are good, but we might need some young guys in a couple of years

    CBs: I’m not really sold that Griffin and Flowers can be corners that do not let more than 2 TDs in a game.
    And we lack the depth. I’d need at least 2 CBs to fight for the spot or at least serve as quality backups. I also need a nickel CB who is at least as good as Coleman was.

    Safeties: I’m cool with McDougald. But if we do not want more than 2TDs I’m not a fan of either Hill or T2. I need a quality FS…not saying ETIII-like but somewhat similar.

    So that’s 2 really good players for DL, 1 really good player for safety, 1 really good CB and 1 simply good/OK CB, and 1-2 good depth LB guys

    Probably 4 “high” picks (first 3 rounds), 2-3 middle round picks (3-5th rounds)

    For offense, I’d need us to even run better.
    OL depth and potential starter LG, FB or good blocking TE, depth at RB.
    And probably a vet QB (Brisett) and maybe a rookie QB too.

    iOL depth and potential starter could come between 2nd and 4th rounds (2 picks)
    good blocking TE could come in the top 3-4 rounds
    FB could come in the 5th
    RB depth probably also in the 5th/6th rounds
    Rookie QB middle-end of 1st round

    With these picks: 6, 17, 21, 37, 84, 124, 159

    I’d trade with KC: 21st for 29, 92, 167
    I’d trade #159 and our next year’s 3rd rounder for let’s say the Browns (#80, but anyone could be good in that range)

    After trades the Hawks would have: 6, 17, 29, 37, 80, 84, 92, 124, 167

    #6 – Rashan Gary (DE)
    #17 – Ed Oliver (DT)
    #29 – Will Grier (QB)
    #37 – Dru Samia (OG)
    #80 – Drew Sample or Foster Moreau (TE)
    #84 – Marvell Tell (S)
    #92 – Amani Hooker (nCB)
    #124 – Michael Jackson (CB)
    #167 Alec Ingold (FB)

    This would give us 2 weapons on the DL
    A rookie QB with potential
    A mauler OG
    A good blocking TE
    We could strengthen our secondary with players who has potential and could compete for starting positions
    A true FB

    I’m not saying it would worth it, and it would push back the re-building a bit, but long term it could be interesting this much young talent infusion

    • Rob Staton

      I wouldn’t trust those rankings to be fair

    • Stephen Pitell

      I love contemplating such moves and all the young talent we could get in one year, and so I won’t mind if we trade him, but John will need a plan and we’d a bit of luck, but if we keep RW we may not get everything we need in this draft to get where we need to get.

      I think Ford may develop into the guy you want in the middle beside Reed.

    • Sanders

      nice work!

  64. JC3

    The logic is simple: They are not trading Wilson.
    They are better off sign him sooner than later, and I glad that Wilson wants a new contract.
    It is good for both side, and there is benefit for Wilson to sign early because all it takes is one Cliff Avril’s incident then his 35+ potential is gone.

    • SeventiesHawksFan

      Russell’s TRUE earnings potential for the next five years is $34 million per season IF there is no injury and EVERYTHING works out.

      And his TRUE earnings potential per season after this one for the next four seasons after this one concludes playing on the tag is $36 to $37 million per year for those four seasons. And again assuming no major injuries or perceived decline in his value over the next three years, two of which wouid be played on the tag. And would have a massive level to drama in his final year on the tag.

      The math behind that is 25 + 30 + 36 + ~40 (new contract) + ~40 = ~170. 34 mil avg over the next five. 36.5 mil avg over the last four.

      Plus we have the quarterback market being set (to an extent) by Aaron Rogers. Plus the impending CBA renegotiation.

      Russell’s camp would have to be awfully committed to getting to a different market to play through the tag. Or the team would have to be ostinate about either paying less than $36 million or not offering guarantees.

      Both sides have some leverage here. Russell has a five years out earnings ceiling of $35 million per year IF EVERYTHING goes his way playing through the tag.

      The true issue isn’t going to be annual amount. It will be contract length and guarantees. $35 mil is the max Wilson can command averaged out over the next five years under any realistic scenario.

      A deal is very likely to get done.

      • DCD2

        Any contract would be an extension though, so the year one number remains largely unchanged. The real number than we’d be looking at to match up with your math is $37M.

        25 + 37(4) = 173M/5 = $34.6/year

        That gets him a bit more than the scenario that you laid out, but also pushes his FA out a couple of years and brings the tag’s back into the conversation for his age 35 & 36 seasons. I’m not sure $3M over 5 years is worth it to him, unless it’s fully guaranteed (and maybe not even then). Would the Hawks even do a 4/142 fully guaranteed deal?

        Which brings us back closer to $40M, which is what RW’s camp is probably shooting for and the Hawks likely having a hard time with.

        • SeventiesHawksFan

          But Russell’s true maximum earnings potential over the next four years after this season concludes but playing on the tag is less than $37 million. 30 + 36 + ~40 + ~40. And that assumes he’ll be signed for 40 per year by another team three seasons from now (admittedly not improbable).

          And this year does matter to what Russell’s true max earnings potential is over the next five years is in reality. Which is $34 million per season.

          The Seahawks can renegotiate this year with a bonus spread out that gets his next five year average over $34 million. With more money coming in NOW and SOONER. And with contract guarantees.

          Russell’s camp has no true leverage for $40 million per season. Other than the obvious threat to play through the tag.

          But what playing through the tag DOES NOT ACCOMPLISH for Russell is making anything greater than $34 million per year on average for the next five years. Without a new deal that is Russell’s TRUE realistic max earnings potential.

          The only party to this equation that can change that for Russell is the Seahawks agreeing to pay him
          more. The team has more carrot and leverage to offer than many think.

          Which is why I think a deal gets done eventually.

    • Rob Staton

      It’s like you haven’t even read the article

  65. Forty20

    Sweezey’s deal with the Cardinals looks to be 9 million over 2 years.

  66. Stephen Pitell

    I would like to add what Pete said about the QB position before Wilson became our starter: He said he would be happy with a “point guard” type of game manager. That description reminds me of the West Coast type of offense under Joe Montana.

    I’d take the NY Giants offer in a heartbeat and try to maximize the team around such a QB. A run first offense with the best OL in the NFL (eventually) and the best defense in the NFL. We wouldn’t need Montana, but Montana may have been as much a “system” QB as he was deserving of all the praise. He WAS a great QB but mostly for those things not usually mentioned. He diagnosed defenses well, and could throw excellent touch passes in the screens and short passing game. Montana was a fantastic point guard QB, and while Wilson COULD be that guy, his natural talent is more about the long bomb.

    Disclaimer: I am not a QB guru or even close.

    • King_Rajesh

      Joe Montana was getting paid during his years in SF. He was making 15% of the cap at the time at 34 according to this news article.

    • Volume12

      Wilson is much more Steve Young to me than Joe Montana.

      • Stephen Pitell

        I agree. I was saying Pete says he would be OK with more of a game manager type QB. I’m thinking back before we had Wilson when Pete would talk about QB’s and the type’s “his system” required. And I’m not saying Montana was “just a game manager” either, just that Montana was a game manager type of player.

  67. Volume12

    ‘Bama HB Josh Jacobs with a 4.63-4.66 40 and 9’4″ broad

    • Bigten

      Seems pretty unexplosive to me.

      • Volume12

        It is. Just not a very athletic RB class overall. Especially in terms of speed.

        The broad jump #’s worry me more than the 40, but his game is power and getting downhill. Not ranked where he is due to his athleticism.

    • Volume12

      LA Tech DE Jaylon Ferguson- 6’5, 271 lbs.

      4.75 40 (1st attempt)
      9’9 broad”
      24 BP reps
      32″ vert

  68. Kenny Sloth

    Would you give Russ the Mike Trout deal if it was possible.

    12 years, 430m? Definitely be our guy for life

  69. Trevor

    People saw stats lie but now when there is 20+ years of data.

    Since the inception of the Salary in 1994 the average % of cap hit by the Super Bowl winning QB is 6.9%. That is correct 6.9%!

    The record for the highest cap hit percentage remains Steve Young’s 13.1% in that first season, when teams were still getting used to building rosters under a budget. Only four quarterbacks have ever won a Super Bowl while accounting for at least 11% of their team’s cap room: Young, Peyton Manning (twice), Tom Brady and Eli Manning.

    Obviously, Eli is the anomaly here. Peyton and Brady are two of the greatest quarterbacks ever, and Peyton was dragged to his second ring by a historically great defense. Manning’s Giants weren’t a great team — just a good one that got hot at the right time. Teams aren’t building their rosters to be the next 2011 Giants is all I’m saying.

    I’m not suggesting that it’s impossible to build a Super Bowl-caliber team around a highly paid quarterback. Teams have done it. It’s just really hard. That quarterback just has to be very, very good and the front office still has to get lucky in the draft and free agency. Aaron Rodgers is the most talented quarterback I’ve ever seen, yet he hasn’t made it back to a Super Bowl since signing his mega deal. Drew Brees is a top-five quarterback all-time in my book, and he hasn’t been close since cracking the $20-million-per-year barrier.

    Funny enough same goes for Russell Wilson who since signing his lucrative extension has a grand total of 2 Wildcard wins and nothing else. He has not gotten past the divisional round.

    The argument could be made that no quarterback is worth as much money as these guys are making. Not even a Rodgers or Brees.

    While I am not sure that I agree with this. The idea of paying Russ more than 20% of our cap seems like the surest way to ensure the Hawks don’t win an SB.

    • H

      The thing that this line of argument misses out is how rare it used to be for any QB to make that much of the cap, so it’s unfair to compare the majority of that data to the NFL today. QB salaries are trending upwards league wide, but this is a problem for everyone. Whilst I’m not going to argue that having a good rookie doesn’t put you at a tremendous advantage, because it clearly does; it’s also still very rare for those guys to be good enough, soon enough to win a SB. No one has done it since Russ (who had an all time defence fwiw). Unless you want to count Wentz, but there’s no guarantee that he would have have been able to beat the Patriots with 2 seasons of NFL experience, just look at how Goff fared.

      I also think that whole methodology is extremely unfair given how much goes into winning a Superbowl, including luck. Matt Ryan’s cap hit was 15.3% and they had to blow a 28-3 loss for him not to be the highest paid SB winner. Back in ’09 Peyton made up 17.2% of the cap (which was enormous for the time) and it took a surprise onside kick to turn hat game around.

      I’m not saying the Seahawks should just pay Wilson whatever it takes to keep him, there has to be a limit that allows them to still field a competitive roster. But i do think we’re getting caught up with this moneyball stuff a tad. If Wilson can be had at around $35 (18.6% of the 2019 cap) that is certainly the best thing for this team.

    • GerryG

      The numbers 100% show how hard it is to do. They do not prove it is impossible, only that it hasn’t been done yet. The league/game changes quite a bit, so I’m not one to put an absolute limit on what the cap % should be.

      I’m not sure I see a SB in the next few years with Wilson, especially at $40M

      The salary cap flexibility they would get with a rookie QB, and the haul of draft picks that would come with the trade could build a heck of a roster, but who knows if you can find a good QB. I certainly am not in the “they just need a game manager” camp.

  70. Burner

    Tom Brady is the anomaly.

    His contract stinks and has done so for a very long time.

  71. DCD2

    I wonder if the Hawks would consider something like 2/$72M as an extension (fully guaranteed)

    It’s $5M over what he’d get on the tags, and fully guarantees his contract through 2021.

    Why Russ would do it: More money (NFL top) and guarantees now. Plenty of time to get 2 more contracts.
    Why Russ would not do it: Potentially looking for his next big deals at age 35/39 instead of 33/37.

    Why SEA would do it: Opens up the tag for other players. Resets the clock in terms of having the option to tag RW in 2022/23.
    Why SEA would not do it: Makes trading him a likely brutal cap hit. (Steelers are taking a $20M+ cap hit on AB and only got a 3/5 for him)

    It doesn’t ‘solve’ very much, but it does keep RW happy and extend our window with him. Just thinking out loud here.

    • GerryG

      It buys them some time for sure.

    • DCD2

      Would also give us a couple of draft classes to find a potential heir apparent.

      • Hawktalker#1


  72. H

    Dave Gettleman on the Giants QB situation:
    “Obviously we have to address it. I’d be a real clown to not admit to that,” Gettleman said “There’s some quarterbacks in this year’s draft. I made the statement I really like the Kansas City model. For years it was everybody’s model. The ideal situation is you bring a young kid in and let him learn from the old pro. That’s the way we would like to approach it.”

    “I told Eli that we were gonna consider everything, consider all our options,” Gettleman said. “The conversation was early January. Obviously, we have done nothing. I think everybody can figure out what option we have decided to go with. Moving forward, he’s our starting quarterback.”

    Seems pretty clear that they aren’t ll that interested in swinging a trade for Wilson.

    • Rob Staton

      Yes — because if the Giants were interested in trading for Russell Wilson, Dave Gettlemen would definitely have revealed this in detail at a press conference.

      A month ago he stated, ‘We didn’t re-sign Odell to trade him’.

      • H

        I was more of the thought that he wouldn’t specifically outline an alternative plan if a Wilson trade was truly in the pipeline.

        I did forget about the OBJ comment though.. fair point.

  73. Sea Mode

    Brady Henderson

    Details of Mike Iupati’s one-year deal with the Seahawks, per source: $1.25M signing bonus, $1M base salary (guaranteed), $500K in per-game roster bonuses, up to $500K in playing-time incentives. So the guarantee is $2.25M, base value is $2.75M and max value is $3.25M.

    So as you would expect, this is a cheaper deal than what J.R. Sweezy got from Arizona. Sweezy will make between $4.5M and $6M this season. Iupati will make between $2.25M and $3.25M. Teams essentially swapped left guards.

    11:48 AM – 19 Mar 2019

    Per Spotrac, Sweezy’s cap hits are $3.46m in 2019 and $5.5m in 2020.

  74. Sea Mode

    Jourdan Rodrigue

    Bruce Irvin’s one-year deal with the Panthers is worth $4 million, but it can go up to $5 million with incentives, according to a league source.

    11:54 AM – 19 Mar 2019

  75. James

    No doubt that in 2022, should Russ push things that far and become a free agent, several things will be in play: the team may have a new owner meaning who knows what, Pete will probably be retired and who knows the next coach, if Russ has strung Seattle along that far for three years, everyone would be so upset with him they would be glad to see him go (and I say this as a Russell lover), and some crazed team would possibly be willing to pay him $50M/yr, but that team would certainly be a bottom dweller, so how happy would Russ be playing for the Jags and going 4-12 for the remainder of his career (for sure, if you are so stupid to pay a player that much, the rest of your roster would be UDFAs). The odds are 20-1 that Russ signs a 4/yr extension for $150M and everyone is happy.

    • Rob Staton

      I wouldn’t say Pete will probably be retired by then. There’s no point trying to predict how long Pete will coach for. There isn’t anyone like Pete.

      I wouldn’t expect the Seahawks to go as high as $37.5m a year.

  76. Stephen Pitell

    I believe Wagner is the guy who we will miss the most, though ETIII comes in as a close second. There isn’t a huge sample on games without Wagner, but I’ve noticed we lost or struggled though every one of those games.

    • Coleslaw

      I think the Kansas City game he missed is the most telling. We crumbled. Him and Earl were the glue, and without Bobby we didnt know what to do. I want to say we’ll be more prepared for life after Wagner, but we were the LOB back then, if all of those guys lose their way without Bobby, How will a younger defense respond?

      It really sucks, but hes getting old. Hes probably the most likely of the big 4 to leave. Maybe Reed, but Theres a significant age difference, and they’ve shown (for 1 year) that they’re willing to pay elite DTs with Sheldon Richardson. Bobby will sadly probably play his last year in seattle this year.

      My guess is that at least one of the big 4 will be gone after this year. Wagner I’m fairly confident this is his last year in Seattle. Reed I’m not so sure. Now if they can find a pass rusher, they could trade Clark and keep the rest + the draft picks from the trade. It’s all speculation from everybody and probably will be until whatever is gonna happen happens.

  77. Max Morrison

    Love the info on all of this. My question is…. if for example NY trade for Russ, they would of course have to sign him long term. Surely whatever they offer the Hawks can match??

    • Rob Staton

      The Hawks can match any alternative offer made by any alternative team.

      The problem isn’t available cap. It’s being able to settle on a deal that works for the Seahawks and Wilson.

  78. Gohawks5151

    Reading all these comments just leads me to more questions about the front office. Are the Seahawks an anomaly in that so many players are leaving without extensions or comp picks? Other teams lose good players as well but i’d be interested to know where we stand on a retention and compensation scale. I kind of feel like this is a perfect storm for Seattle. A lot of big name/money stars all coming due in recent years, while the market is rising and player mentality is raising the cost to unsustainable levels. If that is the way of the future i can see the case for trading one of the big 4 guys sooner than later. And if its a QB you want, you would think the next 2 draft classes would be in play (Tua, Lawrence, maybe Fromm idk…)

  79. ZB

    This article sure has caused a lot of open ended feelings. Myself included. I am torn between trying to trade RW and keeping him but I don’t think it’s realistic to trade a top 5 QB….I don’t believe ANY team will trade draft picks according to what he is worth and we will end up keeping him for a few more years and then letting him go for a 3rd round comp or something. Reality folks. Reality.

    • Rob Staton

      I’m glad you’ve said that. It was the purpose of the piece. To make people think about this situation.

      It warrants serious thought and discussion because it’s a far more complex dilemma than I think many fans realise.

  80. Dale Roberts

    First currently Washington has no income tax. When you’re talking about potential 5 year, $165 million with huge up front dollars guaranteed the state income tax becomes a very big deal indeed.

    Secondly, they were talking on the radio about who’s career Russell Wilson would emulate, Brady, Jeter, Jordan, or LeBron. It seems to me that Russell wants to win and to do that he has to be cognizant of any teams ability to build around him. He most reminds me of Jeter, a confident but humble guy who valued loyalty and valued his teammates. From what I’ve seen I don’t think Russell is arrogant enough to make this 100% about money. Where does he have the best chance to win? The answer to that is Seattle.

    • Rob Staton

      Let’s make one thing clear…

      You can both have a desire to stay with a team, be all about winning, and wish to maximise your earning potential.

  81. Shane

    Spicy article Rob! I love it… Wilson for ton of picks would open up the ability to hang on to the core of the D and an infusion of young talent. Would be a tremendous move. Crossing my fingers for the Giants to get all crazy for RW3.

  82. Dale Roberts

    Name a coach not named Belichick that he has a better chance to win with. You can only do so much with an extra million dollars but losing would make him miserable.

    I think the biggest threat is Ciara’s desire to be in a bigger city without having to be away from the family they’ll soon start.

    • Rob Staton

      There are plenty of coaches he could win with. That’s not a slur on Pete. It’s just the truth.

      These are all minor things on the periphery of the real heart of the subject. Wilson possibly wanting to play on the tag and bet on himself to max out his earning potential is a fair position for him to take. And it’ll be a dilemma for the team to solve.

  83. GoHawksDani

    A bit offtopic, but just wondered about this yesterday a bit:
    Don’t throw at me stone guys, just a weird thought experiment:
    What if a team would jump onto the devalued or cheaper positions and try to get the best guys for those spots?

    For offense:
    Focus on iOL
    The best RB
    The best blocking TE
    Not the biggest, strongest, best athlete, fastest WR, just the smartest, best route runner

    For defense:
    Focus on the LBs
    Focus on the secondary

    As for OL:
    You cannot pay the best guys on OL, it’d be like 90+ million.
    OTs are starting to get as expensive as some of the OK/somewhat good QBs (currently ~16 mil, but it will be soon ~20 mils for LTs, RTs getting 10-12mil)
    But you can get one of the best OGs for ~10-11 mil
    C is also around 8-11 mil.
    The main thing is, we don’t need the best pass blockers, but the best run blocker guys.
    So if a team would get a decent overall LT (10M) who is a beast in the run game and OK in passpro, a good run blocker LG (9M), one of the best C (9 mils), one of the best RG (10M) and a mediocre RT (good in run blocking but mehh at passpro – 4M), that’d be 42 mi.

    Draft and sign a cheaper vet QB. Need only a game manager, nothing fancy. This probably could be done for around 10M

    Get one of the best RB for like 10 mil and draft high those guys.

    Best blocking TE who can also catch would be around 8 mils now probably.

    For WR, get a really quick guy with good vision (KR/PR/WR) for 8 mils and some guys with good value (between 4 and 7 mils, let’s say 2 guys for 10 mils)

    Get one of the best FB, 3M

    Fill up the offense with cheap players (let’s say that’s 7 mil all)

    So for the offense:86 mil

    Get the best ST:
    K -> 5 mil
    P -> 4 mil
    LS -> ~1 mil

    ST is 10 mil

    We have 92 million left

    For the DL always draft multiple guys. Bring in cheap vets for 1-year deals, and hunt for value. The team should spend 4 mils yearly for these guys (2-4 guys that are not rookie)

    For LBs get a top ILB for 12 mils, and one of the best OLBs for 13 mils, and another OKish/good OLB (SAM) for 5 mils.

    That leaves us with 58 mils.
    If we keep 9 mil for draft and IR that leaves us with 49 mil

    You can get a top FS and SS for 22 mils (12-10 or 11-11 or something like this)

    You can get 2 top outside CBs for 12 and 9 mils and a good nickel for 6

    And that’s all the CAP

    The team wouldn’t spend much on DL where if you want the best talent you have to pay 17-20 mil per players. The best QBs will soon cost 35-45 million.
    The best WRs 16-18M. The best pass catching TEs 10-11 mils.

    This would let us have the best special teams (not counting the coverage team just the kickers, LS and a really good returner)
    This would let us have an OKish passpro line but the very best run blocking line.
    One of the best RB and the best run blocker TE.
    The best (or at least top 2-3) FB.

    Our DL might be mediocre, but this team could have the best LBs
    The best or at least one of the best secondary.

    A team like this could massacre most of the other teams who have smaller, faster, leaner DLs, LBs, safeties.
    With a really creative and good OC, this could be an interesting smashmouth run-first team, running 70% or so, and it could easily generate 6-7 yards avg for the lead rusher per carries.
    While this defense wouldn’t generate a lot of sacks and TFLs, but a good DC could generate pressure with the LBs and they could deliver some TFLs too. And even if it would be easy to get 2-3 yards on the grounds against this team, it would be hard to get anything more. And while the QB could have more time to pass if the DL (rookies might be good, just won’t spend much at FA) can generate some pressure (1-3 sacks inside, 6-8 sacks outside) it might not be as huge as a problem. And with this secondary they might get some coverage sacks too.
    This team would probably not lose the ball much (if the QB is not really good, but pretty smart at least), and with good safeties and CB they could generate some turnovers.

    Not saying the Hawks should do this, of course not. But it would be interesting to see how a team that becomes a vulture of the market could do with a roster startegy like this.

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