Seattle Seahawks only have this much time to make decision on Geno Smith

One question the Seahawks must answer this offseason is who will be QB1 going forward.
Christian Petersen/GettyImages

The Seattle Seahawks 2024 offseason will certainly be a learning experience for both the team, especially general manager John Schneider, and 12s. For the first time since Schneider began being employed by the team in 2010, he has full control over roster decisions and the coaching staff. The 2024 NFL draft will very likely be different than any 12s have seen in a decade and a half since former head coach Pete Carroll is involved.

That is partly what makes the decision about what to do with Geno Smith even more important. Should Seattle draft a quarterback in the first round? If the team does, that will be the first time Seattle has taken a quarterback in the first round of the NFL draft since 1993. Maybe Seattle has so much PTSD from choosing Rick Mirer that year that not taking a quarterback so high has been passed down from ownership group to ownership group.

The Seattle Seahawks current QB1 is Geno Smith, of course. Smith re-signed with the Seahawks last offseason for three years. His current deal runs through 2025. He will only be the 18th-highest-paid quarterback in 2024, but he is certainly better than that. In 2023, he had the 14th-best total QBR in the NFL. In 2022, Smith was seventh-best.

Geno Smith will likely be QB1 for the Seattle Seahawks in 2024

But Smith will also turn 34 years old during the 2024 season. That is not old, but if Schneider and the team want to think about who the quarterback is in five seasons, that is unlikely to be Geno Smith. That could mean taking a quarterback high in the 2024 NFL draft. Or possibly re-signing free agent Drew Lock and making him QB1 but that seems extremely unlikely.

We will probably know how Seattle truly views Smith moving forward in the near future by February 16, though. That will be five days after the Super Bowl and on February 16 $12.7 million of Smith's base will become guaranteed. Seattle could still release Smith after that date, of course, but that would be, well...stupid. The Seahawks would release Smith and owe him $12.7 million if that happens after February 16.

Very likely, unless some weird trade is worked out with Smith to a team that has cap room and is willing to give the Seahawks no worse than a mid-round draft pick and the Seahawks are OK with that, Smith is going to be the Seahawks starting quarterback in 2024. Seattle is also unlikely to take a quarterback in the first round and have them sit behind Smith for a year. That would mean that the Seahawks would probably keep Smith around for 2025 as well.

Of course, as much as fans generally complain about starting quarterbacks, Smith was not really the reason for the Seahawks not making the playoffs this season. The offensive line was a bit of a mess but the quarterback play was good enough to win games. The real issue was the defensive line and run defense. That is probably what will be addressed in the first round of the 2024 NFL draft by Seattle.

Read more from 12th Man Rising