The Seahawks are most definitely going through an offseason of change. The coaching staff is nearly completely different. The roster will be missing several productive players in 2018. But is the way Seattle is going about shedding players actually a good thing?
The Seahawks will be different next season. No Michael Bennett and no Richard Sherman. And Seattle is also letting DeShawn Shead test free agency. While almost definitely no one in Seattle is happy about losing these kinds of players, the Seahawks might actually be respected by other NFL players.
Michael Bennett, for instance, could have been traded to several teams. Seattle could have possibly gotten back more for him than just a fifth-rounder and a little-known receiver (Seattle also gave up a seventh-rounder, too). But the Seahawks chose to trade Bennett to the Super Bowl champion Philadelphia Eagles, and possibly extend Bennett’s career.
With the Eagles, Bennett will not have to worry, as he did in Seattle, with playing 83 percent of the snaps. He can be a more situational, and possibly more productive, defensive end. This trade worked out well for Bennett and I have a feeling John Schneider knows this.
The way Seattle released Sherman also helped the player. Sherman was released prior to the new NFL fiscal year (which starts this Wednesday). The timing of Sherman’s release allowed him to negotiate with any team before many other free agents could. Schneider and Pete Carroll were certainly aware of this.
Sherman will now make more money in the next three seasons with the San Francisco 49ers than he would have this season in Seattle. Releasing Sherman was a positive for the player, if not for the Seahawks.
And Seattle kept it’s word to DeShawn Shead, too. According to ESPN, Shead’s agent, Cameron Foster, said Seattle would “release the cornerback on Monday.” But also
…kudos to the Seahawks for doing the right thing. It’s them living up to their word, letting DeShawn test the free-agent world, but they have said they’d like to have him come back.
Will goodwill pay off?
Seattle is acting unlike many other franchises. Sure, the Seahawks are trying to cut payroll and get younger. But they also aren’t mistreating their players at the same time. In fact, one could argue that the way Bennett was traded, and Sherman and Shead were released, was done with respect.
There is a good chance that a quality player in free agency might see this and want to come to Seattle for possibly slightly less money. A player knows when a team respect them. And Seattle has certainly shown they do this with their players.