DK Metcalf is a free agent after the 2022 season. Russell Wilson was traded from the Seahawks to the Broncos last week. How might this affect how Metcalf approaches his next contract, hopefully with Seattle?
First of all, and I have no real idea what general manager John Schneider and head coach Pete Carroll’s long-term plan is, but I think DK Metcalf is a must-extend player for the Seahawks. There have been rumors that maybe Tyler Lockett is on the trade block as well and maybe he should be. Lockett gets really expensive really fast starting in 2023.
Losing Lockett would be bad enough but it might make financial sense. Lockett is a smaller receiver who should be expected to have diminishing returns the older he gets and Lockett will be 31 years old in the 2023 season yet is signed through 2025. But losing Metcalf would be worse than Lockett.
Seahawks need to find a way to keep DK Metcalf in Seattle long-term
Metcalf is 24 years old and should have at least five years to play at an extremely high level. Metcalf is the kind of player that teams should build their offenses around. Giving up Russell Wilson should mean Seattle wants to obtain their next franchise quarterback soon so the team can keep being good. But that quarterback needs players like Metcalf to throw the ball to.
Metcalf isn’t going to be signed cheaply, either. He will be an unrestricted free agent after 2022 and tons of teams are going to want his services. The Seahawks have two choices: 1) extend Metcalf this offseason to take away the drama of next offseason, or 2) franchise-tag Metcalf for 2023 in hopes of extending him but also risk him being upset by the tag so he wants out of Seattle completely.
One problem for Seattle when it comes to Metcalf is that without a quarterback of Wilson’s abilities, Metcalf likely won’t have huge numbers next year. Great receivers want the ball a lot and Metcalf appears to get upset on the sidelines of games already when he isn’t getting enough chances and that is with Wilson as the quarterback.
Metcalf could see himself as a future Hall of Fame receiver who never has a chance to get there with the Seahawks because he isn’t targeted enough to put up huge numbers. This will likely be especially true without Wilson. The question about Metcalf is whether he cares more about how much he is getting paid or more about his production on the field.
By 2023, Seattle, if they want to keep Metcalf in Seattle and they should, will do something they don’t normally do: Overpay for a great player. 2022 might not be a great season for Metcalf and Seattle might need to offer Metcalf a bunch of money to stay with the promise 2023 and beyond will be better. For the Seahawks future success, they need to keep Metcalf around.