This is a key few weeks at quarterback

Baker Mayfield’s future will likely be sorted in the coming weeks

Although this is the quietest part of the NFL off-season, the Seahawks are approaching a particularly interesting part of their year.

It’s clear they wanted to get a look at their quarterbacks during minicamp and OTA’s, then reassess. So what did they learn? Are they content or planning an addition?

It stands to reason that if they’re going to add, the new QB would be in place for the start of training camp. It would be particularly challenging to introduce a new quarterback into the competition once camp begins.

Now that they have some info on the Geno Smith vs Drew Lock vs Jacob Eason ‘battle’ — they can review how aggressive they want to be.

Pete Carroll suggested at the owners meeting they would like to add another quarterback to the mix. It’s possible he was indulging in a bit of kidology there with the draft still to come. Yet in all likelihood I think he was being honest. Even if the Seahawks are playing a long game at the position with an eye on the 2023 draft, you can well imagine Carroll wanting a bigger competition.

That’s not to say it’s with a view, necessarily, of imagining the Seahawks becoming strong contenders this year. I sense a realism from the front office.

For example, for all the talk of Carroll’s age and implied desperation to compete as soon as possible — do we really think the Seahawks would be sat here in mid-June having done nothing at quarterback other than acquire Lock in the Russell Wilson trade?

Wouldn’t they have been more aggressive to go after Matt Ryan, for example? They had the draft stock to usurp Indianapolis after all. Or would they have added some other veteran via trade or free agency?

They even snubbed the entire 2022 QB draft class when other teams (Atlanta, Carolina) couldn’t help themselves and felt they had to take someone. The Seahawks have been incredibly patient throughout this process, suggesting a more long term approach.

I also think it’s not quite as black or white as trying to contend or tanking. There’s a middle ground that I think the Seahawks are situated currently.

As noted in another article I wrote recently — it’s possible to be highly competitive internally and foster the kind of culture you desire without having the optimal quarterback situation. You only have to look at 2011 for that. The Seahawks created an attitude and style that ultimately paved the way for what happened next. And they did it with Tarvaris Jackson and Charlie Whitehurst competing to start at quarterback.

I think this is what the 2022 season will be about. Creating something that proves to be the platform for the next couple of years.

I don’t think Carroll feels pressure to find an answer to win right away. A smart franchise, having dealt Wilson, would embrace more of a longer build over a couple of off-seasons. I think this is where they are.

The key for this team is to find a great, young quarterback. Not an average, expensive place-holder. Having spent a lot of time already studying the 2023 quarterback class, there are players in there with the potential to be a long term quality starter for this team.

Yet there is still part of me that wonders if they are, wisely or not, planning to make a further move in the coming weeks.

The Shelby Harris contract restructure felt unnecessary given the Seahawks already have ample cap space to play with. When you look across the remaining available free agents, there’s equally nobody who really stands out as a viable target for Seattle.

Sure, they could perhaps look at another receiver such as a Will Fuller. Kwon Alexander could add a bit more competition at linebacker. Yet there’s a feeling of relative completeness to the roster given the status of the team in a rebuilding year.

The Seahawks have around $17m to spend — more than enough to make some moves. So why make the Harris restructure unless it’s with a view to having flexibility over quarterbacks?

The team is making it known via the media that they won’t be trading for Baker Mayfield, for example, and it’s unlikely they’d be able to strike a deal with division rival San Francisco for Jimmy Garoppolo.

There is part of me, however, that wonders if they’ve created cap room ‘just in case’. The Panthers are said to still be in talks with Cleveland over Mayfield. The Browns are supposedly prepared to pay half of Mayfield’s $18m salary while the Panthers are still trying to barter that number down (especially given they’re already paying Sam Darnold $18m).

Are the Seahawks saying and doing all of the right things publicly but essentially hiding in the tall grass, waiting to pounce when the value reaches a level they are comfortable with?

Or could Darnold provide an option if Carolina trades for Mayfield? I appreciate it would be unattractive and highly underwhelming to many fans. Yet it shouldn’t be ignored what was being reported just over a year ago.

From an article I wrote on March 30th last year:

Brad Biggs at the Chicago Tribune quoted a NFL GM linking Darnold to the Seahawks. Pat Leonard of the New York Daily News cited a source, claiming Pete Carroll ‘has a high opinion of Darnold’ and that people should ‘keep an eye on Seattle’.

Days earlier, Colin Cowherd also made the connection.

I suspect, had the Seahawks dealt Wilson to Chicago a year ago, Darnold probably would’ve been Seattle’s target replacement.

Their view might’ve changed given Darnold’s extremely disappointing year in Carolina. Yet if they acquire Mayfield having already drafted Matt Corral — you would imagine Darnold might be surplus to requirements and could be available for an extremely low price (he is in the same boat as Mayfield contractually so the Panthers could agree to pay a high portion of his salary to get something/anything in return).

With Garoppolo, it’s more a case of biding time. There’s no way the 49ers are going to guarantee his $25m salary by having him on the roster in week one. It makes no sense for Garoppolo to be at camp given his pending exit.

He’s better off holding out, asking for his release and telling San Francisco he will not lower his cap hit.

It’s possible the Niners would hold on to him until the end of camp in that scenario to prevent him having an ideal settling in period with another NFC team — but that would be a fairly brutal and ruthless approach.

Complicating matters will be his recovery from a serious shoulder surgery. Yet if he is released you can imagine there will be suitors — from Carolina to Houston and potentially Cleveland depending on Deshaun Watson’s status and possibly the Falcons and Eagles.

Cap space, in that situation, could be crucial.

The Seahawks might appreciate Garoppolo’s ability to convert third downs and play within structure, as he did in San Francisco. His number of ‘WTF?’ turnovers and lack of arm strength isn’t ideal but he is well suited to other aspects of the scheme.

As I’ve said a few times now, I see little benefit in adding either player.

Mayfield had everything going for him in Cleveland. Great running game, they acquired fantastic weapons at great expense at receiver and tight end, quality O-line, offensive minded Head Coaches. He has an 87.8 career passer rating and he’s thrown 56 interceptions. Drama has followed him. He has physical limitations.

Garoppolo is injured a lot and the 49ers just spent three first round picks trying to replace him. I don’t think either puts you in a position to win this year. They’re just big names.

I’d rather just have an extended look at Drew Lock for a year and think about happier times in the future.

Yet there are things working in Seattle’s favour if they truly do believe Mayfield and/or Garoppolo are worth adding. Firstly, they have the draft stock to trade up if needed next year for a young QB. Secondly, the hype train on players like Bryce Young and C.J. Stroud is OTT. If they prefer the likes of Will Levis and Tyler Van Dyke, those players might be in striking range even if you win between seven and nine games.

(Although I expect both to go very early if they continue to perform in 2022)

I still think short-term pain for potential long-term gain is the way to go. Mayfield and Garoppolo are not taking you where you need to get to — not in 2022. Not beyond.

That’s certainly the case with Darnold too.

Yet we’re reaching a point where a decision on all of these players needs to be made before training camp. With Seattle’s quarterback room as it is, these names are going to continue be connected to the Seahawks.

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  1. James

    Excellent analysis as always, Rob. Looking at everything that has happened, and not happened, with the QB position, I believe this is John and Pete’s thinking: I don’t believe that Pete is just blowing smoke about Drew Lock. The circumstances suggest that Pete thinks Lock is as good or better prospect than Mayfield, Garopollo, Darnold or anyone they could pick up, and also as good or better than any of the QBs in the recent draft. Lock has the size, arm strength, mobility and even accuracy to be a decent QB1 in the league. The question with him, and it is a huge question because it is the most important question, is does he have the right stuff? Can he slow the game down and make the right decisions in the moment? Does he have the will power and leadership to drive the team to a winning TD in the final minutes of a playoff game? Probably not, but maybe, and I think Pete intends to find out this season, and if not, draft one in the 2023 draft. Steve Young and Dan Fouts, and even further back Jim Plunkett, had miserable starts to their careers but somehow managed to turn things around and there they sit in the Hall of Fame. Not likely, but you never know until you put it to the test.

    • calgaryhawk

      Exactly how I feel about the QB situation for the Seahawks. I believe Smith is the perfect mentor for Lock even if Lock sits behind Smith on the depth chart at this point. Like I’ve said before, the Rams were very tough with Gurley and Goff for many years. Could the extra cap space be for signing Metcalf and/or others? Maybe camp cuts of other teams? Anyways, it will be entertaining to watch the team moves going foreward.

      • Rob Staton

        They wouldn’t need more cap space this year and less next year to extend Metcalf

        • calgaryhawk


          • Rob Staton

            Sure, but the point still stands. If Metcalf’s cap hit is unaffected this year by an extension and given the cap space they have already, they don’t need to do anything to include him in this equation.

            • Jerry

              Could the hawks front-load Metcalfs contract?

              • Rob Staton

                That would be highly unprecedented

  2. K-Med

    On Drew Lock, has there ever been a quarterback that has started their career is a rough spot and gone on to greatness elsewhere? A friend and I were discussing this and we were scratching our heads to find an example. Plenty of serviceable players who bounce around (Bradford, Tannehill, Cousins) but trying to think of a comp for Lock. Is there a QB anyone can think of who started their career like this, was moved and went on to be great or even serviceable?

    • Rob Staton

      Not identically like this but Tannehill had a rough time in Miami and unexpectedly improved in Tennessee

    • Mel

      Brett Favre spent 1 uneventful year in ATL. Threw 5 passes, 2 of em picks. But that was a unique situation

    • James

      As noted above, Steve Young and Dan Fouts bombed out at the beginning and did 180’s and are now in the HoF.

      • Whit21

        I think there are very few cases of QBs being mediocre and then turning it around. I think most examples are more of QBs not getting shot for a few years and then becoming good starters. Probably only Trent Dilfer comes to mind as a QB that was a high pick and didn’t live up to expectations, but won a superbowl on the back of one of the best defense of all time (behind 2013 seahawks of course)

        Troy Aikman, Peyton Manning, John Elway, kind of Alex Smith had rough starts to their careers and probably only Elway had the mediocre stats for many of his first 8 seasons but still be considered a top QB at the time. I don’t think that Drew Lock just needs a better situation. Coaching carousel aside and a bad team. You either have to show it or you don’t..

        So Mayfield or Garoppolo could be helpful and probably better than Lock.. this will just be a painful 6 win team with Lock/Geno.. maybe 4. It would be hard to judge some of the division games. They can usually beat the 9ers or cardinals when you think they won’t.

        Probably gonna get swept by the Rams again.

        • AlaskaHawk

          Buffalo Bills Allen looked pretty bad for three seasons. Lucky that they stuck with him.

          • Whit21

            His first season was rough but they went 5-6.. 2019 season was still rough stats wise but won 10 games. Then won 13 in 2020 and 11 in 2021 with his stats being the best in 20 and 21.. If you win enough games, stats don’t matter as much.. So I would disagree with you that he looked bad his first 3 seasons. He has always had a high ceiling with huge mechanical improvements after the 2019 season..

            • AlaskaHawk

              I Wouldn’t mind if Lock made the same progress with the Seahawks.

    • Jeff

      Rich Gannon is one that comes to mind where he was mediocre to bad for many many years and eventually won an MVP. So anything COULD happen =)

    • UkAlex6674

      Define greatness? Not sure Tannehill, Bradford or Cousins meets that definition as you say. What are you minimum expectations of Lock?

    • VanHawk

      Doug Flutie: 4 seasons in the NFL and then left to CFL for 8 seasons then back to the NFL, winning pro bowl and two playoff runs with the Bills.

      • Old but Slow

        George Blanda. Spent years as a backup QB only keeping his job because he was also the place kicker, became the starter because of injury and had a long career into his 40’s.

        • Elmer

          Warren Moon

          John Brodie

  3. Henry Taylor

    I think I would actually be pretty intrigued by adding Darnold if he was available for cheap. I think he has a few advantages to joining our current situation that guys like Baker and Jimmy G lack; he is younger for one, has only ever played on bad teams with bad offenses (he’s been bug part of the reason for that ofc), and he hasn’t had the chance to play in one of the QB friendly Shannehanian schemes before.

    But the big one is that there are no expectations with him, with Baker and Jimmy you kind of know you’re gonna get average QB play that will likely give you a tough call at the end of the year as to whether to keep them, but if Darnold plays to that same level, I don’t think they’ll be nearly as much pressure to run it back because it would be 1 off. Even if you do decide to keep him you’re probably not looking at the same kind of long term commitment in the contract because you’ll be able to say that was 1 decent year out of 5, you need to prove it again.

    He’d basically be another shot at nothing in a year where doing that is completely fine.

  4. JimN

    Rob, your gift of analysis is amazing and i concur with your thoughts 100%. I think the initial build is certainly in the heads of PC and JS and it worked well. I think the comments from the Seahawks are for media consumption only. Darnold, i don’t know about. My thoughts is that they think that Lock has NOT been given a level field chance to be successful. From my research i think this is indeed todays reality. I think the history of allowing and giving opportunity to Wilson to compete and beat out a high priced QB Flynn speaks volumes to what they may do this year. Smith is the established guy, Lock is the potential new guy. THe operational word IMO is OPPORTUNITY. If they have identified Lock as one who has a reasonable high probability of being successful given good coaching, encouragement and most of all opportunity, then adding another QB from outside could certainly muddy the water in their analysis. If Wilson hadn’t become a starter, they would have kept Flynn and tried again the next year. So it probably is with Lock, especially since they certainly know who may be available next year. THanks for your blog Rob, it is so fun listening to your great analysis and the comments from so many real thinking fans.

  5. cha

    Or could Darnold provide an option if Carolina trades for Mayfield? I appreciate it would be unattractive and highly underwhelming to many fans. Yet it shouldn’t be ignored what was being reported just over a year ago.

    This would be a very interesting scenario. Unless Carolina wants to carry 3 QBs on their roster (and after just having drafted Matt Corrall), they’re decidedly putting themselves in the exact same situation Cleveland is in – with too many QBs and little leverage in negotiations.

    Which is likely why you’re seeing Carolina not jumping to give Cleveland a pick for Mayfield at $9m. They’d have to turn around and do the exact same thing with Darnold. Could they trade for Baker and then convince another team to take give them the same deal for Sam Darnold to make it a wash? Maybe, maybe not.

    Personally I prefer to ‘unproven upside’ of Lock and even Geno and his 68% completion rate and 5/1 TD to INT ratio in 4 2021 games to either of them.

  6. uptop

    Zac Stevens
    Russell Wilson was asked by a camper at his camp if he’ll play with the Broncos the rest of his career:

    “Yup, let’s win some Super Bowls”

    Uh oh Broncos fans, he’s doing it again.

  7. Happy Hawk

    “The middle ground between trying to contend and tanking” is no mans land and has the potential to live in the land of the no franchise QB for some time to come.

    • Rob Staton

      Not really

      Tanking means deliberately trying to lose

      You don’t have to tank to have a bad record and a high draft pick

  8. Elmer

    A couple of questions:

    1. Is Darnold demonstrably a better option than Drew Lock? Or is it the USC connection.

    2. If the NFL craps on Watson is it possible that the Browns would want to keep Mayfield around while Watson is not available.

    • 509 Chris

      I’ve been wondering the same things. Watson likely doesn’t play a down this year, and if more allegations pop up he spends more time in court. It’s possible he doesn’t play again. However it pans out Baker looks like the only next best thing. Can Cleveland repair the relationship is the question. As to Darnold and Lock, flip a coin. I think they both have shot in the dark potential, but do we have someone on the staff that can develop any quarterback and build a creative offense to their strengths? Huge hopes that Waldron takes a big step forward this year. Perhaps Pete is ready to concede some control.

      • Rob Staton

        I can’t imagine any situation where Baker Mayfield plays again for Cleveland

        • Kazinski

          If Baker refuses to play then he won’t get paid. He’s under contract. Then he’s still under contract for next year

          I can’t see him giving Cleveland his 19m guaranteed back so he can see if anyone will offer Cleveland a trade for him next year.

          If he shows up willing to play it puts Cleveland in a bind, otherwise he’s the one in a bind.

          • Rob Staton

            Not at all

            He can tell the Browns he has no interest whatsoever in playing for them

            Forcing him to play would be a recipe for a total and utter shambles and won’t happen

    • CHaquesFan

      Regardless of the Deshaun Watson situation, Baker Mayfield will most likely refuse to play for the team and seek a trade, citing the burned bridges when they called him not an adult. Jacoby Brissett would probably play for them if Watson was suspended.

  9. Tomas

    Darnold? What, Paxton Lynch isn’t available? Please God, just no, don’t extinguish all hope. But now I can envision this happening. Thanks, Rob.

  10. Happy Hawk

    The Colts drafted 2 rookie tackles ( Anthony Castonzo and Ben Ijalana ) and went with Curtis Painter at QB in 2011. They went 2-14 that year. Drafted 1st overall in 2012 and took A Luck over Robert Griffen. Not apples to apples but?

    • Jerry

      This isn’t accurate. The Colts didn’t decide to go with Curtis Painter and tank. Their QB was Payton Manning, with Kerry Collins as the backup. Manning couldn’t play due to a what looked like a career-ending neck injury in 2011. Collins was lost for the season due to a concussion. The severity of Manning’s injury wasn’t clear until week after the 2011 draft, and they selected Luck the following year. The way it worked out was Manning ->dumpster fire-> Luck, but that wasn’t part of a rebuilding master plan.

      • AlaskaHawk

        They didn’t sign a better veteran quarterback either. They just stuck with the quarterback that they knew would have a poor season. Yes they planned it.

        • Jerry

          I’m sorry, but that’s simply not true unless you think there was some hidden conspiracy to tank that was not made public. Mannings injury was a concern, but they had no way of knowing he’d miss the entire 2011 season. Manning had never missed a single game prior to 2011. He had a procedure in the off-season, and it went very poorly. He ended up having another surgery not long before the season started. Then, their last minute replacement (Collins) got injured. Unless the colts somehow knew this was going to unfold exactly as it did, and kept it secret, it wasn’t some master plan to tank. The team had to deal with a season-ending injury to their franchise QBs. Unsurprisingly, the result was a terrible record. But saying that they made the decision to point the 2011 season is not accurate.

  11. Rick

    I think that the team is not really interested in wins-losses this year as much as being competitive.
    By that I mean that they would love to win and make it in the playoffs.
    But if for some reason they went 5-12 but had a point differential higher than -40 I think that they would call the season a success. Be in every game. Have change to win every game. Give the young guys a chance to play and learn in games that are close. Build that culture and expectations.
    That is what is important.
    As long as Lock does not give the game away and can give them a chance to win then I think they will be happy to go the season with him.

    • Elmer

      Interestingly hey were a 5 win team in 2009, the year before Pete Carroll was brought in. I don’t remember them as especially building toward anything though. Pete came in the next year and treated the roster like an expansion team. Lots of transactions.

  12. Jed Simon

    “It’s possible to be highly competitive internally and foster the kind of culture you desire without having the optimal quarterback situation.”

    I agree. Mike Salk sure doesn’t—not after this week’s “You can’t fool the locker room” diatribery. I think we’re right on this, though, due in large part to the roster’s high number of younger players with so much to prove (especially the 2018–21 draftees). Those guys will play their hearts out, rest assured, even if the front office could be perceived as lacking activeness in maximizing the aggregate talent of the quarterback room. The 2011 team was extremely competitive over the second half of that season, which never would have happened if players had decided PCJS weren’t doing their best to staff the roster at the game’s most important position.

    Elsewhere, regarding the 2023 quarterback class, I’m curious whether you’ve seen this vid from Top Billin’:

    I thought maybe the host was referring to you during the early minutes of the cut; perhaps this is the case? He couldn’t remember the name of the guy who allegedly started the Will Levis hype train, but who else would he be talking about? Top Billin’ has done some good work (like you, he does his own prospect assessments, and often goes against mainstream media consensus), but his racist explanation for Will Levis love is truly low-class. If you were to debate this guy on the topic, I can confidently predict that your assessment of and argument for Levis—or of/for any promising 2023 prospect, for that matter—would not include skin color as a factor of consideration.

    • Rob Staton

      1. On Salk’s ‘can’t fool the locker room’. Who exactly is kicking up a fuss? Diggs, who signed a new deal after the Wilson trade? The saintly Tyler Lockett? It’s a useful argument if you want to shoehorn a QB debate into the agenda but otherwise there’s no evidence that any player in Seattle is going to kick off if Baker Mayfield or Jimmy G isn’t added pronto.

      2. That video claims to be wanting to educate a fan base, before criticising the Will Levis talk. I’ve studied the QB’s more than most. KJ Jefferson isn’t in the same zip code as Levis. But hey, claiming a player is the answer in a thumbnail and going OTT on these players is good for views.

      • Jed Simon

        1. Exactly.

        2. Exactly.

    • cha

      Top Billin is always over the top. Every player the Seahawks acquire is the greatest player in the history of football.

      He’s the guy who dubbed anyone criticizing the Jamal Adams trade as “casual fanboys and overall nerd virgins.” Agree or disagree on Adams, resorting to name-calling earns a scratch in my book.

      If you’re looking for rational, thought-out analysis, Top Billin isn’t your cup of tea.

      • Jed Simon

        Yeah, TB goes large with his mic presence, and he has an alluring rhythm to his delivery, together which lend a listenability to his voice. His film analysis reveals a solid Xs and Os frame of reference, too. . .but his format is based on breaking down a narrow sample of plays for a given player, and then drawing broad conclusions from those few reps—typically rendering his findings in that over-the-top manner assured to draw the upvotes. . .

        . . .But no matter: Just recognize the harmfulness of such divisive content and add to the boycott list accordingly.

      • Big Mike

        Anyone who thinks the Adams trade was worth it or thinks Adams’ performance level has been even “good” isn’t worth my time to listen to.

  13. JimQ

    I was surprised to see QB-Cameron Ward mocked to the Seahawks recently. He’s a transfer portal guy at Washington State. His one year in FCS was indeed pretty darn good, but without experience at a higher level, he would seem to be a huge reach at this point in time. After watching his FCS highlights, I noted that he has prototypical QB size, a strong arm & good elusiveness and mobility. I get the potential, but how in the world could he be projected as a 2023 1-st round pick? I suppose, if he has similar production in the face of much better competition, he could maybe raise that high in rankings, but that remains to be seen. He would be a good one to keep a close eye on next season performance wise. Anyone have any thoughts on Ward?

    • Rob Staton

      Everyone is reaching

      They’ve heard it’s a good QB class so everyone with two working arms is being mocked early

      The four to keep an eye on as of today are the four we’ve discussed

    • J

      He was the third best QB in the portal last year after Caleb Williams and Quinn Bowers.

      Lane Kiffin has said he’s a first round lock, although that was on a recruiting visit so may be salesmanship.

      I see a guy with good mobility, prototype size, an extremely quick release and an extremely strong arm (those latter two might be best in class). Moving up to the P5 but playing under the same coach in the same offensive system.

      It’s a bit early to mock him in the first but he’s got as good of tools as Carson Wentz or Trey Lance and is in a good position to have great production this year.

  14. R. L. Howser

    Rob, what are your thoughts on Cam Ward, the WSU transfer QB? I’m suddenly hearing him talked up as one of the top prospects next year.

  15. 509 Chris

    I just read this article about the Ravens team building. I’ve heard quite a bit of talk about these same things here on the blog before. Basically build opposite to everyone else and you can save a ton of money. Their drafting is always superb which is essential to maintaining a good squad no matter how you want to operate, and their coached in a way that compliments the strengths of the team. Hard not to be jealous.

  16. V

    Tom Pelissero: The #Seahawks signed DT Bryan Mone to a two-year, $12 million extension that includes a $1.5 million signing bonus, per source.

    An exclusive-rights player who signed his tender in April, Mone now can earn up to $13.8 million with incentives through 2024.

    • Ashish

      Waiting for expert comments. Happy for Mone home grown talent get paid.

    • Mick

      Not the extension I expect. I hope Pete and John will realize it’s not normal to pay safeties and backup TEs while losing one of the best performers of the team. Overpay if you have to, all teams do it sooner or later, but keep DK here.

    • cha

      As always the guaranteed money is key, and we don’t know how much that is yet.

      Things I like:

      -This is a great ‘attaboy’ to an effort player who was an UDFA and like Poona Ford, isn’t afraid to hustle his big body downfield to make a tackle. There’s a not easily seen ingredient with Mone that appeals to Pete Carroll. He pointed Mone out as a prospect based on just a 89 snaps in 2019 and he rewarded the team with some good play in 2020.

      -The $1.5m bonus gets paid now, so he gets his ERFA salary and his bonus money immediately.

      -The Seahawks & PC used some stick with the two WR 7th rounders, with both of them showing up to the early off season activities not in shape to fully compete. With signing a UDFA to a $12m contract, the team is using some carrot with them.

      -There is some continuity on the interior DL going. Al Woods is signed through 2023 and now Mone is through 2024. It’s a bit of a comfort shield if Poona Ford leaves after this year.

      Things I’m concerned about:

      -His PFF was a solid 64 in 2020 but dipped to a mediocre 48.9 in 2021. I acknowledge PFF isn’t the be-all and end-all of stats. But that tracks with my untrained eye-test: he definitely had more bursts into the backfield and visible stops in 2020 than 2021.

      -Is his downturn a result of nearly doubling his snaps in 2021? And if so that raises questions about the cost/benefit ratio.

      -Again, depending on how much money they guaranteed, is this another spot where the Seahawks pay up for a guy who could be replaced on a lower salary? He’s making more money than Al Woods now, who the Seahawks picked up off the street and was arguably their defensive MVP last year.

      -The Seahawks now have 3 interior DL that are very low on pass rush potential. Mone, Woods, and Ford have shown bursts but they’re just not viable threats. And their run defense was ‘just ok’ last year. I have concerns about them 1-tipping their hand to the offense if they have some combo of these 3 on the field and 2-again, the Seahawks are doing their “let’s invest in depth rather than invest in top talent” routine.

      • Roy Batty

        I was hoping they would carry over the extra cap this year into 2023, but I secretly knew it would gradually evaporate as they keep up the trend of retaining mediocre talent on 2-3 year deals.

        By the start of the regular season, I can see the cap dwindle down to just a few million available for any future emergency signings during the season.

        • Rob Staton

          It’s already concerning that next year they should have about 80-100m to spend given what they do and don’t have on the roster

          It’s already down to 50m before paying Metcalf

          • cha

            And with two firsts and two seconds, there’s about $8-10m more off the books.

            Jamal Adams can be a June 1 cut to gain $11m but that means taking your medicine of $21.33m dead cap between 2022 and 2023.

            • cha

              Check that, I meant 2023 and 2024 dead cap.

              • Ashish

                If Adams play doesn’t improve and there is better and cheap backup available that $21.22m dead cap looks better over 2 years. Hawks had bad dead cap for a while Kam and Cliff getting injured, Lynch also had something because we paid him extra, now probably Russ and many more … add Adams to the list. Yes I’m bias don’t like Adams.

              • Roy Batty

                Remember the good old days when we were so happy about the incredible amount of cap space they would have in 2023 after eating so much dead money this year?

                What’s depressing is that those good old days were only a couple of months ago.


      • Big Mike

        “The Seahawks now have 3 interior DL that are very low on pass rush potential”

        You’d think with Seattle playing Donald twice a year and seeing what he does to opposing offenses up close and personal, that they might put more focus on interior pass rush.

  17. Cambs

    “It’s possible the Niners would hold on to him until the end of camp in that scenario to prevent him having an ideal settling in period with another NFC team — but that would be a fairly brutal and ruthless approach.”

    Everything I’ve ever seen says Jimmy G is exceedingly popular in the Niners’ locker room. Players obviously know the score in the Not For Long league, but I have to think that if the organization were seen by his teammates to be intentionally screwing him over it would be counterproductive to making a successful and supportive transition to Trey Lance. Who knows whether they *are* thinking this way, but the 49ers *should* be thinking that the latter is a far more foundational interest to their current setup than some incremental value possibly accruing to a divisional rival. That’s the bet that they’ve already made; for them, everything depends on optimizing it.

  18. AlaskaHawk

    I’m wondering about the wisdom of letting DJ Reed walk (33 million for 3 years with Jets) , in light of the Seahawks saving money for what?

    The starting safeties are both hurt and recovering from injuries. Their best cornerback left. Are they purposely leaving their secondary weak so they lose games? I figured that Reed was normal turnover of vets, but I didn’t expect them to have a cash surplus at this time of year. Did they even try to retain him? And that’s not knocking the new cornerbacks, I have high hopes. But I’ve seen the Seahawks run some pretty bad cornerbacks out there. Bad safeties too when they were desperate.

    Anyway – my random thought of the day.

    • TomLPDX

      Didn’t DJ say the Seahawks made him an “insulting” offer or something like that?

      • cha

        Yeah, but compared to the 20% Bad Franchise Upcharge the Jets had to pay, sure what the Hawks offered probably looked pretty weak.

  19. BoiseSeahawk

    Let Locke Cook

    I’d rather see them use that extra cap and roster spot to try and improve another position, even a strength of the team. Knowing that they won’t find THE missing piece at QB with one of Darnold, Mayfield, etc.

  20. Stuart

    To me this inexcusable. How can so many other teams sign everyone they need to yet we can’t?

    This is strike 1!

    In free agency, how can we do such a horrible job by overpaying for everyone? We overpay for avg or even below average players and ignore the blue chip talent?

    This is strike 2!

    Jamal Adams trade?

    This is Strike 3!

    Almost always signing our blue chip players AFTER the market has already been set! We sign our guys in mid to late summer and ALWAY pay more or get hossed.

    This is Strike 4!

    Drafting since 2013 (not including 2022 draft)

    This is Strike 5!

    If i could be in charge i would immediately repair these mistakes with new people.

    Lastly, in my opinion, this was my favorite and possibly best draft ever by JSPC.

    Who was really in charge? Who ever it was needs to be in charge of all the other areas too.

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