December 16, 2012; Toronto, ON, Canada; Seattle Seahawks kick returner Leon Washington (33) gets away from Buffalo Bills punter Shawn Powell (6) at the Rogers Centre. Seattle defeated Buffalo 50-17. Mandatory Credit: John E. Sokolowski-USA TODAY Sports

How The Seattle Seahawks Can Clear Some Cap Room

Back on Thursday, I showed how the Seahawks have a lot less cap space than it appears. That $17.1 million is really just $5 million unless they want to have major cap problems a year from now.

So if they’re going to sign any veteran help, they’re going to need find some additional spending room. Here’s a few options:

1) Rework some contracts – Zack Miller would be the first candidate. His cap number for next season is over $11 million. The Seahawks could get that down in a number of ways, asking him to reduce his salary, and/or converting some of the 2012 base salary to a bonus to push the cap hit out into the remaining years of the contract.

Other players who the Seahawks could rework include Sydney Rice, Russell Okung, Chris Clemons and Marshawn Lynch.

2) Creative contract extensions – usually contract extensions cause cap numbers to go up, but not always. Extending Michael Robinson (who’ll be a free agent after this next season) could include pushing some of his 2013 money into later years, especially if the team is willing to guarantee some of it.

Zach Miller is another big options here, as is Russell Okung.

3) Trades – There’s only two players on the Seahawks who have large enough cap numbers where trading them will matter, enough talent that other teams will want them, and aren’t crucial to the Seahawks success in 2013. Those would be the obvious Matt Flynn, and the much less obvious Leon Washington.

4) Cap Casualties – There are always contracts that are much larger than the production on the field would indicate. Unfortunately, these contracts end up being taken off the books completely. It’s one of those “it’s a business” parts of football. Mostly likely here are Ben Obomanu, Leon Washington and Heath Farewell.

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