Golden Tate was apparently not impressed by the contract that was offered by the Seattle Seahawks. In fact, Tate referred to the offer as “laughable.” For all of you out there that are not English majors, the word “laughable” is not exactly synonymous with “competitive” or “comparable.”
We may never know what the Seahawks offered, and whether the overall money was too low or if it was backloaded to lessen the immediate impact on the salary cap. Players in the NFL know how the business side works. They know that the guaranteed money is the key, and a player that signs a five or six-year deal may have little chance of playing out the entire contract.
Was this just about Seattle’s opinion of Golden Tate? Or was it another piece of the larger philosophy?
You could argue that the Seahawks let Tate go because they trust their system. The philosophy of “next man up” has emphasized depth, constant competition and a sense that no one is indispensable.
Now, that strategy only works as long as you have genuine depth. The Seahawks have been raided quite a bit this offseason, and the team of Pete Carroll and John Schneider may eventually find that they are unable to find gems in the later rounds of the draft.
After all, the Seahawks didn’t do anything that represents a crazy methodology. Sure, the Seahawks did put in a particular defense that utilizes tall, physical corners. However, the ‘Hawks still had to find the right personnel for that system. Every team wants to find underrated talent in the fifth and sixth rounds. Seattle has just been fortunate in recent years to discover several diamonds in the rough.
This is not to say that the Seahawks are unwilling to spend money. They gave Percy Harvin a large contract and the organization was willing to pay Michael Bennett. The Seahawks are not going to assume that everyone will play for the league minimum. Richard Sherman, Earl Thomas and Russell Wilson are not going to be cheap.
In general, the point is that the Seahawks have gotten this far by continually reloading with young talent. Whether that philosophy will continue to be successful remains to be seen. The contract offered to Tate may have been low, but it may have fit with the long-term plan for success.
We’ll just have to see what the Seahawks are able to find in this year’s NFL draft.