Curtis Rogers of ESPN 710 Seattle believes the Seahawks may have upped their offer to star defensive end Jadeveon Clowney.
With the odd timing of Justin Britt and DJ Fluker’s release, it would only make sense that Seattle has something in the works. The Seahawks managed to pick two defensive ends in the draft. Both of which are riddled with potential and can contribute in some fashion in year one. However, what they failed to do, was add any sure-fire starters this off-season to improve the pass rush.
As it is currently, our defense has not improved in the way I hoped it would. We have loads of potential for years to come but do not currently possess players that will force opposing offensive coordinators to specifically plan for.
This is where things may be changing on that front. Seattle released Britt and Fluker on Sunday. Due to this, the Seahawks recouped nearly $12 million in cap space bringing the total available post-draft to $18.8 million in “true cap” (I go over the explanation of “true cap” here). As I wrote last night, I believe the root cause of the two releases was due to another offer being introduced to Jadeveon Clowney. Curtis Rogers of 710 ESPN Seattle appears to believe this is the case as well.
“They were going to be in that $13M-$15M range, but I’m thinking they may have topped that. I think they may have gone to $15.5M-$16M.” @JohnClaytonNFL on what the subtractions of Fluker & Britt mean for Seattle’s pursuit of Jadeveon Clowney@710ESPNSeattle
— Curtis Rogers (@AKidFromKent) April 27, 2020
The original offer that was leaked online for Clowney came in at a 2 year, $27 million, fully guaranteed contract. I wouldn’t be surprised if Seattle has upped the ante and offered something in the ballpark of a 2-3 contract at his desired amount of $17 million per year. The Seahawks clearly have the cap room to make this happen after the two releases.
The compensation pick deadline passing today at 1 pm pacific time. Teams will likely be more active in pursuing the high-priced free agent knowing it will no longer jeopardize their comp picks for 2021. The time to lock Clowney down is now.
If Clowney accepted a contract at $17 million per year (fully guaranteed), let’s examine what his potential cap hits would look like if it were a 1-, 2-, and 3-year contract:
Terms: 1 year, $17 million
Guaranteed: $17 million
Cap hits by year:
- 2020: $17 million
Terms: 2 years, $34 million
Guaranteed: $34 million
Cap hits by year:
- 2020: $13.5 million
- 2021: $20.5 million
Terms: 3 years, $51 million
Guaranteed: $51 million
Cap hits by year:
- 2020: $11 million
- 2021: $18.5 million
- 2022: $21.5 million
Clearly, a long-term contract is better for Seattle’s immediate future in terms of available cap space. However, it also runs the risk of Clowney underperforming, getting hurt, or “turning it off” in terms of motor once he gets paid. This would leave Seattle being stuck with monstrous cap hits on a dead deal. This has been one of the major reasons why teams have been uneasy with signing Clowney.
I think the happy place for both the Seahawks and Jadeveon Clowney would be a 2-year deal. It will allow Seattle a small margin to keep in cap space for this year and reduce the risk going forward. This would also give Clowney an opportunity to hit the free-agent market at age 29 and potentially cash in again. Regardless of where he signs, I fully expect an agreement to come into place in the near future with the comp pick deadline ending today.