The Seahawks only have 13 free agents right now, and the vast majority of those are either late season injury replacements or guys who rarely got on the field. This is because the high priority players, like C Max Unger, were signed to extensions a year ago.
So who are the players who are going to be entering their contract year this season, and which of those should Seattle try and re-sign now instead of waiting and possibly losing them?
Unrestricted Free Agents
This list has some starters, which is never a good sign. Kam Chancellor is the biggest name, and he’ll likely be extended soon. Michael Robinson is another one who likely will get a new contract soon.
Other than that, the rest are likely to get to this time next year before the Seahawks begin talking contracts with them. Both Breno Giacomini and Paul McQuistan are starters right now, but neither is irreplaceable. McQuistan likely loses his starting job to Sweezy and Carpenter in training camp, and Breno was bad enough at time in 2012 that the team will certainly look for an upgrade there this offseason.
The real question mark is Golden Tate. He had a bit of a “break out” year in 2012, but was still wildly inconsistent. The Seahawks will almost certainly draft a WR early this year, and might look to free agency for another WR. My guess is that the Seahawks wait it out and see how 2013 goes before deciding on what to do with Tate.
Two other players on that list, Deter Davis and Walter Thurmond, have to prove they can stay healthy before the Seahawks will consider re-signing them. After that there’s a number of backups who will just be fighting for a roster spot, so there’s no reason to lock them up early.
So overall, other than Chancellor and Robinson, I don’t see the Seahawks looking to lock up many of their free-agents-to-be this offseason.
Restricted Free Agents
Restricted free agents are almost never signed to an extension early. There’s just no reason to. Players can go out into the free agent market and set their own value, then their old team has the chance to match the deal, or get a draft pick. It’s a low stress scenario for the team with the rights to the player.