I’m going to refrain from the more infuriating Seahawks-affiliated rumors and instead talk about this. Shaquill Griffin signed with the Jags for 3 years and $44.5 million.
It’s noteworthy, of course, because the Seahawks selected Griffin in the third round of the 2017 NFL draft and immediately made him a starter at cornerback. And, he was competent from the get-go! If I had to rate him among other Seahawks cornerbacks, I’d say he was better than Marcus Trufant and worse than Richard Sherman; both make pretty good company as far as starting-calibre cornerbacks are concerned, so I would say his Seahawks career was a success.
I think where the trouble lies as far as his reputation is concerned is the fact that he was essentially drafted as the replacement for Richard Sherman. They, in fact, shared a field for part of Griffin’s rookie year, but by that point Sherm’s days were numbered given his attitude towards management and various players on the team. Sherman is a Hall of Famer, almost certainly on the first ballot (unless his personality costs him some votes, which is entirely possible), so that’s a hard one to have to live up to.
Griffin’s coverage skills were his best attribute. I wouldn’t say he was a “lockdown” kind of guy, but he was in a tier just below it, with nice recovery speed. Quarterbacks tended to avoid his side of the field, particularly when he did take over for Sherman in 2018 and beyond.
But, he has 6 career interceptions in 4 seasons. That’s nobody’s idea of a Top Of The Game cornerback. And, to the NFL’s credit, he’s earning the money of a Tier Two guy. Not that the league has a ton of money available, but the Jags sure do (or did, after a flurry of moves yesterday and today), and it would’ve been easy to see a team like Jacksonville overpay a ton of guys to get good in a hurry (as they have the #1 overall pick and look to totally rebuild their franchise).
This wasn’t a shock. What was more shocking than anything was hearing that the Seahawks were trying to make a serious play for Griffin. In the end, it doesn’t sound like we were very close at all, off by maybe $10-$15 million in overall value. But, given our cap constraints, the fact that we have viable starters still on the team (making significantly less money), and the fact that we have cheaper options who won’t be much of a downgrade at all available in free agency, it makes sense to let Griffin get paid elsewhere on his second contract. If this were a normal year, with our salary cap shooting over $200 million, I think the Seahawks would’ve given Griffin a deal like this in a heartbeat. But, having $20 million less to spend, you’ve gotta cut corners somewhere.
Of course, cutting corners here – while spending exorbitant amounts of money on bringing K.J. Wright back, or signing a free agent running back – is exactly what’s making me and the rest of Seahawks fandom so insanely outraged. This bullshit, meanwhile the O-Line and pass rush continues to get neglected, even though we fucking KNOW what they mean to the success of this team. It’s utter fucking lunacy!