Deals that happened, didn’t happen, and may happen

by Joe on March 15, 2012

A couple days into free agency and there are still lots of questions for every team out there and some great players are still available. Fans love to overreact during these first couple days when most of the big name players sign huge contracts with other teams and they rip their front offices for not doing anything.

Red Bryant Seahawks

Red will stay a Seahawk! He looks excited about it.

Free agency isn’t just a 2 or 3 days frenzy though. For the smart teams it will take a number of weeks and even extend all through the season. Players are always being signed, cut, found on the street, and even though a team doesn’t sign a marquee player they can still make a big splash in free agency.

Smart teams don’t overreact when it comes to free agency. They don’t spend a ton of money on big name guys, they don’t panic and overpay for a superstar when they can get 3 or 4 good players for the same price, and they fill their roster with solid players from top to bottom instead of a superstar or two and a bunch of filler.

The Seahawks have been one of these teams for the past few years under Pete Carroll and John Schneider. Seattle is building a very flexible roster both on the field and also salary cap wise. There are no players that are crippling them from making other moves due to a huge cap number and there are very few players that are indispensable to this team.

So what has Seattle done or not done so far in free agency? Here are a few moves they have made, some moves they didn’t make, and some moves that still may happen.

Moves Seattle Has Made

1. Signing Red Bryant. 5 years, $35 million is a very good number for both the team and for Bryant. Yeah, Bryant got paid and $7 million is a lot for a D-lineman that doesn’t jump off the page with huge sack numbers but anyone that has watched Bryant knows how valuable he is to this defense and the team. When he plays well it is nearly impossible for other teams to get much of a running game going and when he is out teams can run. This is one of those great deals that works great for both the player and the team.

2. Cut Robert Gallery and Re-Sign Paul McQuistan. Robert Gallery came in from Oakland last year and while he played OK he was injured too often and didn’t dominate like he should. Paul McQuistan is a great guy to have for depth and he can play up and down the line. When he played the Seahawks didn’t lose much at all and he is great to have on the roster for depth.

Also Steve Huchinson is visiting Seattle. He left in a bad way a few years ago but if he can stay healthy and still play I would welcome him back. Cutting Gallery will save Seattle $5 million or so and that should be about what it will cost to get Hutch.

3. Re-signing Marshawn Lynch. Lynch gave this team an identity last year and some toughness in the running game. Running backs are one of the more replaceable players on a roster but Marshawn really brings more than just his numbers.

Moves Seattle Hasn’t Made

1. Peyton Manning. This is more on Manning than Seattle but it looks like Manning won’t be in Seattle next year. Right now it is looking like either Denver or Tennessee. Seattle showed interest but Manning didn’t. I would have loved to see Manning playing in Seattle next year but I am also happy to let someone else write his huge paychecks and take the injury risk. Seattle could have been great with Peyton at QB but even without him they are good enough to be a playoff team next year.

2. Mario Williams. This is another player I would have loved to see in Seattle but not for $100 million with $50 million guaranteed. That is a ton of money to have wrapped up in one player and while he is a great young player just coming into his prime Seattle will be able to get 4 or 5 very good players signed with that money.

3. Chad Henne. Henne signed with Jacksonville before even visiting Seattle. I wouldn’t have pegged Henne as a starter but if he could have come in and outperformed Tarvaris Jackson in training camp and preseason I would have been happy to give him a chance. Jackson is good enough to live with but some competition for him wouldn’t be a bad thing. This is one of those deals I would have been fine with if it happened but I won’t shed a tear about it not happening.

Moves Seattle May Make

1. Matt Flynn. Seattle seems to be playing the QB thing very smart. They aren’t gonna take a huge risk and reach in the draft, they aren’t gonna overpay a free agent, and they are gonna take the best opportunity they can to improve. Matt Flynn would be a great addition assuming they don’t overspend. Lots of people who know a lot more about football than me say he is the real deal. He doesn’t have a ton of in game experience but if Seattle can get him for 3 years, $16-20 million I think it would be worth giving him a shot.

I am guessing Seattle could be looking for a QB in the 2nd or 3rd round (Kirk Cousins, Brock Ostweiller, or someone along those lines) and having them sit for a couple years would be a great plan.

2. Visanthe Shiancoe. I like how Seattle is set up at TE with Miller, Morrah, and McCoy (assuming McCoy learns how to catch the ball) but I wouldn’t complain at all if Shiancoe can come in and add some more depth and skill to the position. He is visiting Seattle and could be a good addition. John Carlson just signed a 5 year, $25 million deal so it seems like Seattle could get a deal done for around that amount, maybe less.

3. Jason Jones. Jones would give Seattle another good option for the inside of the D-line, give some push up the middle, and help out the edge pass rushers. His numbers won’t make you go “wow” but he could be a Brandon Mebane type where he makes everyone around him better.

Free agency is just getting started and Seattle still has a lot of moves they will make. I am sure we will see a linebacker or two signed (would love to re-sign Leroy Hill and David Hawthorne) and maybe another RB. As the Seahawks fill out their roster the draft will start taking shape as well. I love this time of year!


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