The Seahawks are once again taking the wait-and-see approach in free agency. This is maddening for 12s but might make financial sense long-term as far as the salary cap is concerned. The big question is if the way the Seahawks are approaching the offseason is making the team worse in 2021?
There are several players left in free agency who still would be good fits with Seattle and possibly improve the team. Who are they?
Potential Seahawks free agents left in free agency
Nicknamed “baby thump”, Denzel Perryman is a fierce hitting middle linebacker and is great against the run. This is just what the Seahawks need at linebacker.
At age 28, Perryman is coming into his prime and at around $6 million a year fits into the Seahawks limited spending power this off-season. Whilst linebacker may not be a the top of the Seahawks priority list, Perryman is such an ideal fit, I would put him top of the Seahawks most wanted list.
The guy snapping the ball is a bit more obvious. In 2,245 career snaps, Austin Reiter has allowed just 3 sacks. He has been much-maligned recently, but with career stats like that, Russell Wilson just should love to have him on board.
Again due to his being taken late in the draft and then signed off waivers by the Chiefs, the perception is that Reiter basked in the talents around him in KC. Even if that is true to a certain extent, he should still provide a good upgrade on the departing Ethan Pocic.
Due to his less than glamorous draft background and being a waiver pick up by KC, he is being knocked down the pecking order at his position. So the Seahawks may be able to get him for $3-4 million dollars, which for me would be a price well worth paying.
An alternative and slightly cheaper option to Reiter would be David Andrews, if the Pats do not re-sign Andrews then he is a strong all-round center prospect the Seahawks should consider. He is not as good a pass blocker as Reiter but is stronger than him as a run blocker. So Reiter would make Wilson happier, but Andrews would be a Pete Carroll-friendly option.
If the Seahawks spend $14-15 million on these two, they are really looking in the free agency thrift shop at their other need positions.
If Seattle wanted to add more protection for Wilson on the O-line, they should look at Kyle Long. Former Chicago Bear Long will return to the NFL after a one-year career break due to accumulative injuries. If he returns from his break recovered from those injuries and back to somewhere near his best, he represents a small gamble with a massive upside.
One such is Keelan Cole. The Seahawks could give their WR corps a different look by adding slot receiver Cole. He could cost as little as $2-3 million per year. You will not get the next Doug Baldwin for that price. But Cole has developed into a decent slot receiver for the Jags and again represents value for money.
Picking up Jordan Reed for $1-2 million per year on a 2-year deal could work well at a position where the Seahawks definitely need to add.
If the Seahawks want to go to the cornerback section of the thrift shop, they may well find Gareon Conley waiting there. At a likely cost of $2.5 million per year, there is a risk in taking Conley, but the upside warrants the risk for me.
Alternative linebackers/edge rushers
If Perryman does not arrive in Seattle, then the ‘Hawks should consider re-signing Jadeveon Clowney or alternatively, Tarell Basham.
Clowney is a former first pick overall back in 2014, a 7-year vet, with three Pro Bowl appearances in that time. He would add presence and leadership. to the Seahawks Defence. He is a completely different type to Perryman as he has built his career on being a devastating pass rusher. Whilst he may not fill the precise need of the Seahawks, he could still be a potential value pick-up.
Basham would be an inexpensive all-around linebacker to bring in, and also adds value for his special teams abilities. But if the Seahawks could get Perryman and Reiter, plus a guard, slot receiver, tight end and cornerback for $25 million they could still have a really good free agency offseason.