With a new head coach in Seattle, the Seahawks might also want to look at a change of who is running the offense on the field. While Seattle has not given any indication that they are ready to move on from Geno Smith, they also have given no indication that the team is fully committed to him. Even in Mike Macdonald's first press conference with the team, Macdonald only said the team would be built around the quarterback but did not specifically say "Geno Smith."
The probability is that Smith is QB1 in Week 1 of 2024. Smith might not be Patrick Mahomes, but which quarterback is? Smith is a top-half-of-the-league quarterback and his statistic bear that out over the last couple of seasons. There is certainly no guarantee of improvement at QB by replacing Smith.
Keeping Smith also might make more sense for 2024 anyway. Macdonald would then start his head coaching career with a veteran quarterback. Of course, Smith would still be learning a new offensive system for the first time in several years. If Macdonald and general manager John Schneider do decide they want to replace Smith, here are five potential options.
No. 1 - Seattle Seahawks could replace Geno Smith with Drew Lock
This is the low-hanging fruit, right? Lock started two games for the Seahawks this season when Smith missed the games with injury and Lock looked better than many might have anticipated. He was not perfect, of course, but he was more poised than expected. In Lock's two starts, he was 44 of 64 passing (68.7 percent) with 3 touchdown passes and 2 interceptions. He also led a last-minute game-winning touchdown drive against the Philadelphia Eagles. The other game was against a very good San Francisco 49ers defense.
I found it slightly odd that John Schneider mentioned Drew Lock once in Mike Macdonald's introductory press conference. The reference was about moving forward with the team. Schneider knows as well as anyone that Lock is a free agent and free to sign wherever he pleases. His performance this season should get him a pay increase over the $4 million he made this year even if that means still being a backup for some other team.
12s will get a great indication of what Seattle is going to do early in the 2024 NFL draft if Lock is re-signed in free agency and Smith is still on the team. There would be no need to take a quarterback in the first round with both Lock and Smith on the roster. Seattle has until February 16 to make a decision about Smith, however, because after that his base salary becomes guaranteed.
If Seattle chooses to let Smith go, Lock could be re-signed to replace him. Releasing Smith would save $17 million in cap room. How much would it take to re-sign Lock and make him the starter? Less than $17 million? If so, Lock would start and the Seahawks would save money.
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