After a very intriguing back and forth couple of weeks, the Chicago Bears scooped Jared Allen right out from under the Seahawks’ umbrella, signing the former Viking to a four-year deal worth $32 million.
Chicago was involved early in talks with Allen but had seemingly fallen off the map when they went out and got defensive help. Apparently they were involved all along and just went quiet, which was a really smart move on their part.
So now instead of terrorizing Jay Cutler, Allen will be fighting to get him the ball back. This is actually a pretty significant move in the NFC North, making Chicago that much more formidable against the Green Bay Packers. We all remember that race coming down to the final minute of the final week when Aaron Rodgers broke Chicago’s heart in the Windy City to both secure a Playoff spot and ruin the Bears’ season.
This is the kind of move that could be worth one or two games, so it’s definitely a move worthy of the deal. Though I am shocked it’s for four years, the contract could void out at three and it’s no surprise that with more than $15 million in guarantees this is where he decided to go.
What it means for the Seahawks? Well, it’s disappointing but it’s not as if they were in a position of make-or-break here. Still, defense now comes back into play at pick 32, honestly. I don’t think they’ll go there ultimately, the needs on offense are too great and there will be bonafide can’t-miss talent on that side of the ball when the Seahawks pick, but the thought has to cross Pete Carroll’s mind. The Hawks will probably go to the defensive line in the 3rd round for depth or on day three though, as they’ve been doing the last couple seasons.
Also, Greg Scruggs is probably silently doing a little happy dance. He is the player that benefits the most here in my opinion and he should now get every opportunity to fully step into the rotation on the defensive line. Hopefully he is up to the challenge, Seahawks fans have been high on him as an under-the-radar talent since his 7th round selection in 2012. Barring an improbable trade before draft day now, it’s probably a lock that Scruggs is in position to show everybody his worth this upcoming season.
There’s also going to be a ripple effect perhaps on what the Hawks are able to do the rest of this free agency. Allen’s offer from Seattle was thought to be around two years, at $6 million so this opens up available cap space to go after somebody if they want. Receiver is still a position they’re trying to lock up with a veteran (interest has been in former Seahawk Sidney Rice) and they’ll still need space to sign Jermichael Finley when he becomes available. If they’re looking somewhere else, at this point it’s unknown to the general public.