Jared Allen is reportedly meeting with the Seattle Seahawks…again. This means that either there is strong mutual interest, or Allen is discovering that his options are limited. Maybe a little bit of both?
Plenty of teams would sign a player like Jared Allen, even at his age. He can still contribute, and for a championship-caliber team he could represent the final piece of the puzzle.
That doesn’t change the fact that this is not Major League Baseball. 31-year-old free agents (almost 32) cannot walk into a team headquarters and demand a lucrative, multi-year deal. When it comes to financial compensations, teams definitively have the upper hand. Contracts are all about the guaranteed money, not the potential compensation.
It has been reported that Allen is seeking somewhere in the range of $10-12 million per year. How many years he wants is not necessarily known. If those demands are true, they are apparently too rich for any franchise to comply.
This comes down to what Allen wants. If he will truly walk away from the game unless he gets paid, then perhaps he will stick with these demands. However, if he actually wants to win, then he might have to lower his price.
The Seahawks are a good fit for Allen, but they should maintain their position of strength. Offer him a one-year deal for $6-7 million. Seattle could go two years, but that is risky if Allen experiences an obvious decline during this season. The Seahawks can truthfully offer Allen a shot at winning a Super Bowl, perhaps more than any other team.
Jared Allen can demand the money, or he can chase the ring. Perhaps he can get a little bit of both, but he will not neccessarily maximize his earning with the Seahawks. Seattle has other priorities in the next couple of seasons, and they can’t tie themselves down to an expensive veteran contract.
Money? Or a ring? You might have to choose, Mr. Allen.