Seahawks free agency: all the losses, big and small
The Seattle Seahawks have not had the best off-season so far by any measure. Too much of the talent has hit the exit, not the entrance.
Coming into free agency, 12s knew the Seahawks were going to make some big changes. There was simply too much money tied up in big contracts. No less than five players now have contracts for at least $8 million per year on other teams. These are the former Seahawks now playing for the wrong side, including one big trade.
The big contracts the Seahawks let walk
Richard Sherman. He was released with an eye on saving $11 million this season. Seattle hoped to bring him back for less money. Instead, Sherman signed with the Seahawks biggest rivals, the 49ers. Many 12s were displeased, to put it mildly. Sherman is reportedly pleased with his deal, worth up to $39 million.
Michael Bennett. Traded to the Philadelphia Eagles, Bennett is on a three year deal worth $30 million. The Seahawks couldn’t afford to keep him either, especially considering that his performance has dropped just a bit over the last few seasons. He’s still a big loss, though.
Sheldon Richardson. This is the worst loss for Seattle. He’s the youngest of the top talent Seattle lost. In addition, the Seahawks gave up Jermaine Kearse and a second round pick in the upcoming draft to get him. In essence, he was a one year rental. The Vikings signed him for $8 million.
Jimmy Graham. The Seahawks hoped to bring him back at about $7 million, and knew that wouldn’t be enough. Three years at $30 million is what Graham will pull down, along with more than a few passes from Aaron Rodgers.
Paul Richardson. The circus catch specialist got a huge payday with Washington. I like the guy a lot, but five years for $40 million is far more than he’s worth. The Redskins are paying $8 million per year to a player with the same number of career touchdowns in four seasons of play.
Seahawks will miss these guys, too
Luke Willson. While Willson wasn’t one of the top dollar players, his move to the Detroit Lions is a bigger loss than many people realize. He dropped just two passes in the past two seasons, and had four touchdown catches in 2017. He is also a far better blocker than Jimmy Graham. If there is such a thing as a clutch player, Luke Willson is a prime example.
DeShawn Shead. This loss doesn’t hurt the Seahawks on the field nearly as much as the big name players. Still, Shead was expected to compete for the starting cornerback role he held in 2016. The Seahawks released him only so he wouldn’t be forced to play under his previous $1.5 million contract. In light of that, his move to the Lions bothers me more than Sherman’s move.
Matt Tobin. His departure doesn’t exactly have the impact as the other players listed. He still contributed, though. He had over 90 snaps on special teams, and got 81 snaps at tackle, including over 30 in the Seahawks mid-season win over the Cardinals. Tobin is now a member of the *ugh* New England Patriots.
Related Story: Some free agents still on Seattle's wishlist
Combined, that’s a loss of thirteen Pro Bowl seasons. That’s a lot of talent to see hit the door. Tomorrow we’ll take a look at who came through the entrance. With any luck, we’ll have a new name or two to add.