Look, I’m going to like any move the Seahawks make to improve the defense, because it’s been abysmal watching how this side of the ball has deteriorated over the years. Also, it’s one year, $7 million (guaranteed money amount yet to be released), which isn’t an unreasonable amount.
It didn’t feel great having Bobby on the Rams. That being said, it was entirely reasonable for the Seahawks to cut him (maybe not with the lack of communication) and sort of re-set his salary value to the league. He’s in his 30’s now, even if he’s playing at a relatively high level, this is the world we’re living in.
That being said, it was weird seeing him outside of a Seahawks uniform, and it was distressing seeing him twice in the uniform of a divisional opponent.
Bobby Wagner was easily one of the best parts of the Rams last year, given all the injuries they endured. He was second-team All Pro, which isn’t necessarily a legacy award like the Pro Bowl; it still means something. 6 sacks, 2 picks, his usual massive amount of tackles, and he played in every fucking game. Just a fucking Hall of Fame stud!
Has he lost a step? Sure, who hasn’t at 32 going on 33? He’s not an elite coverage defender anymore. That’s okay. The Seahawks just need to understand that, and focus him towards what he does best: roaming the middle of the field, and being a beast when it comes to stopping the run and plays around the line of scrimmage.
This free agency spree has been about one thing more than any other: fixing our run defense. Total revamp of the interior of the defensive line. Brought back Bobby (to help fill the void of the Jordyn Brooks injury). Signed Julian Love to bring a little more LOS help from the safety spot (either with Love or Jamal Adams, should he still be here). And, brought in Devin Bush, who very well could be that coverage linebacker if he can reclaim his lost speed, two years post-injury.
There are some interesting thoughts that come to mind with all of this activity. All of this activity, mind you, that’s VERY un-Seahawks. We aren’t normally EVER this active in free agency. Not at the top of the market. Not with guys you’ve actually heard of. Usually it’s people off the scrap heap, coming back from injuries or bouts of ineffectiveness, but who were once high draft picks and therefore have a pedigree that we hope to bring back to relevance.
My biggest worry is that this is the impetus for the Seahawks trading down from five. I know, there was always a chance they’d do that anyway. But, now I fear we’re going to trade WAY down, in an attempt to not only acquire a ton of middling draft picks, but also to save money under the salary cap. As I’ve stated from Day One (that day being: when I realized we’d get the number five pick from Denver) that I want a stud in this draft. You don’t get a stud by trading back. You don’t get a stud by LEAVING the top five. They’re not falling down the draft board. I’m sick of picking in the 20’s. This was our ONE chance to pick in the top five, and I fear we’re going to blow it.
The counter to that is: the Seahawks are making all of these free agency moves in order to mitigate our dependence upon the draft. Now that we’ve – more or less – filled out our roster, we can truly go Best Player Available in the draft and not have to think twice. But, that doesn’t mean I want us throwing this draft away.
But, the fact of the matter is, even before the Bobby Wagner signing, the Seahawks were out of money. When you factor in the cost of draft picks, practice squad, and the IR replacements we’ll eventually need, we’re actually in the hole. And there’s significant savings to be had if we trade down from number five.
There’s also, as it turns out, significant savings if we cut Jamal Adams after June 1st. Adams counts a tad over $18 million towards the salary cap this year. I think his dead cap figure is more than that – something closer to $24 million – but if you do it after June 1st, you can split the damage over 2023 and 2024, which would – in effect – save us around $6 million on the low end, or maybe up to $8.5 million on the high end. I have no idea how it works with his contract; I’m reading very different things between Spotrac and Over The Cap.
I understand the rationale, though. Adams has been fucking worthless the last two seasons. His first year here was terrific – with the 9.5 sacks and all that – but even then he was limited to 12 games. Indeed, he’s NEVER played in more than 12 games per season in a Seahawks uniform, and we suffered the indignity of him going out in Game 1 last year. A year, mind you, where it sounds like we REALLY catered the defense to his unique abilities. So, yeah, I get it. I’m as down on him as anyone. I do not believe – for one second – that he’s going to be available for anything CLOSE to a full season. I’d have to be a gullible fucking idiot to believe that!
That being said, I would still hate this move. Not so much that I actually believe he’ll be available – though, I do think precautions can be made where maybe we can limit his snaps and hopefully limit the damage to injuries he can either play through, or make it back from in time for the playoffs – but I just hate giving up on a talent like that. He DOES have a unique skillset that you just don’t get with any ordinary player. And, I also hate having to eat this much dead money. We’re paying a fuckton to him to NOT play for us this year, AND we’re suffering another fuckton in dead cap in 2024, when he’s already long gone.
Bottom line is, we’re going to have the most talent on this defense that we’ve had in ages. I want to see what it looks like WITH a healthy Jamal Adams, even if he’s only healthy for a game or three!
That being said, the writing is on the wall. I believe more and more, with every passing day – with every passing move the Seahawks make – that Jamal Adams is as good as gone. The only other way we can generate a little cap relief is if we extend Uchenna Nwosu and/or Noah Fant. Maybe we can restructure Lockett or Diggs, as a Twitter replier pointed out. If I had my druthers, THIS would be the way the Seahawks free up some cash. I want Nwosu around for the long haul, and extending him now might be more cost-effective than trying to extend him after a second very productive season in a Seahawks uniform.
Regardless, if it only comes down to cutting Adams or trading down from five – as a means to save money – I guess I’d rather trade Adams. But, that doesn’t mean I have to be happy about it.
What’s really interesting about all of these moves is how – for the first time – this doesn’t feel like your run-of-the-mill instance of the Seahawks “Going All In”. I think there have been a number of times where we’ve tried to shoot the moon. It may have looked like half measures as we were doing it, but that doesn’t mean it wasn’t legitimate.
But, this? This feels – again, for the first time – like it’s Pete Carroll’s age showing. He’ll be 72 years old in September. And, yeah, I get it, he’s the youngest-looking 72 year old we’ve ever seen. He’s more active than a man half his age and blah blah blah. But, 72 is 72. The oldest head coach in NFL history was Romeo Crennel at 73. Do I believe this is Pete’s last hurrah? Of course not. I think he’ll reach that mark as the oldest head coach in NFL history (until whenever Bill Belichick surpasses him, as he’s a year younger). But, I also don’t know if I believe that Pete has more than three seasons left. He’s apparently under contract through 2025. That might be it, regardless of what happens with the eventual sale of the Seahawks.
We’re gearing up for a run here, and then The Great Unknown. So, if ever there was a time to start kicking the can down the road as far as the salary cap is concerned, this might be it. I’d like to do that with as many bullets in the chamber as humanly possible, so I hope the Seahawks don’t make any rash decisions in the coming months.
Either way, this should be a VERY interesting team. And it’s super fun having Bobby back for at least one more go-around!