The Seahawks took a big hit when they traded Frank Clark and used a first-round pick to replace him with L.J. Collier. The conventional wisdom is wrong.
When the Seahawks traded away their top sack machine, Frank Clark, it certainly seemed like the defense took a major hit. We’ve written a lot about how Seattle had to improve their pass rush, as has virtually everyone interested in the Hawks. Clark had 30 percent of the team’s total sacks. While losing Clark won’t help their pass rush, it won’t hurt it as much as we worried. Shipping Clark out gave Seattle an extra first-round pick that kicked off John Schneider’s master class in drafting. And it brought L.J. Collier to the team, who can eventually help the team overall more than Clark.
Heresy, I know. I am in no way knocking Black Elvis. He was a solid player in his second and third seasons and should have started in the Pro Bowl last year. He was a good teammate by all accounts, and a good person, too. Clark was simply fun to watch. After all, the NFL is entertainment, right? So no, this is in no way a knock on Clark. More of a silver lining commentary.
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The silver lining in losing Clark for the Seahawks was this: they suddenly had $17 million more than they anticipated. That allowed Seattle to not only sign Collier at just under $2 million this year, but Ezekiel Ansah for $7.9 million, Cassius Marsh at $1.8 million, and Al Woods at $2.2 million. Combined those players’ cap space for 2019 is $13.9 million. That still leaves over $4 million, which the Seahawks could certainly use toward extending the contracts of Bobby Wagner and Jarran Reed.