Should the Seahawks sign (Familiar Name)?


The NFL calendar is so consistent for Seahawks fans. Things happen to fan bases at various points in time, every single year, in every NFL city at certain moments.

Currently, fans of teams are calling radio shows and asking whether their favorite club should pick up that player that just got cut for unknown reasons by that other team. They can’t believe Team X is letting go of Player Y because it seems like the acquiring of said player could be the big answer to all of their problems.

Does that sound too good to be true? It should, because it is.

The allure of the Past-His-Prime-Guy-You-Definitely-Heard-Of entrances fans all across the nation every February and early March. Whether it’s because of fantasy football or SportsCenter highlights or just because people remember the player being really good at some point in their lives, one thing we can count on is fans taking Microsoft Paint liberties with players and putting them in the home team’s uniform online, surrounded by hearts.

Heck, even actual NFL front offices get caught up in this utopian whirlpool. Seahawks GM John Schneider was hit with an arrow named Cary Williams by a Seattle-based cupid just a year ago, signing the recently released cornerback to a 3-year, $18M contract last March that thankfully was terminated halfway through the first season, though the damage had already been done both on the field and to the salary cap.

In just the past couple of weeks, we’ve seen these well-known players hit the unemployment line: Riley Cooper, Will Beatty, Geoff Schwartz, Joique Bell, Jermon Bushrod, Randy Starks, Chris Long, James Laurinaitis, Antonio Cromartie and Marques Colston.

So the question is- should the Seahawks sign any or all of these guys to contracts? Would these vets that have been there, done that bridge the small gap between playoff casualty and Super Bowl champion that exists for Seattle?

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For the most part, the answer is, with emphasis, “NO!”

I get it. On the surface, it seems like signing Chris Long, for example, would be a real coup for the pass rush because we all have recurring nightmares featuring the Rams D-line running through the Seattle O-line like it isn’t even there, harassing our really expensive quarterback play after play.  It would be great to turn the tables on the opponent by using Long to do the same thing.

But look deeper, and you understand why Long wasn’t invited to the party in LA.

His sack totals from 2011 through 2015 are as follows: 13, 11, 8.5, 1, 3. This is what is known as a disturbing trend.  The last two years were marred by injury and that certainly has a lot to do with the paltry sack totals, but it’s still a really bad thing to have your two most recent seasons ruined due to injury.  That issue will likely only get worse as he gets deeper into his 30’s.

In addition, you’re talking about a guy who never sees double-teams because his linemates are friggin’ awesome. Long got every opportunity and space to shine when he played in St Louis and would have now been only the 5th or 6th best D-lineman on that team if he was still part of it.

Chris Long wasn’t released just because his salary cap number is too high compared to his production, though that was enough of a reason to cut him loose. He simply isn’t the player you remember giving the Seahawks fits anymore.  Do you recall Patrick Kerney and Grant Wistrom at the end of their careers in Seattle?  Their production fell off a cliff.

Chris Long’s toes are dangling over the same cliff. Let him be someone else’s mid-priced disappointment.

“What about Antonio Cromartie?”

Could the Seahawks make a run at Joique Bell?
Nov 22, 2015; Detroit, MI, USA; Detroit Lions running back Joique Bell (35) signals after a first down during the fourth quarter against the Oakland Raiders at Ford Field. The Lions won 18-13. Mandatory Credit: Raj Mehta-USA TODAY Sports /

No. That’s Cary Williams 2.0 .

“Will Beatty? Joique Bell?  Jermon Bushrod?  Marques Colston?”

No across the board, primarily due to past injuries and the likelihood they’ll recur. Plus they’re all over the age of 30 and have therefore received their NFL AARP cards in the mail.  These players are far closer to the glue factory than they are being able to help this team win.

The point here is we as Seahawks fans have to look beyond the glitz and glamour of the ‘big name’. The layers that exist below the surface of familiarity reveal some very ugly facts about a lot of these available players.

It’s one thing to long for an unrestricted free agent who is still on the come-up and can easily transition into a productive player for your team. Of course Golden Tate was going to thrive in Detroit. We knew better than anyone that his best days were ahead of him after watching that man build upon his game and professionalism each of his four years in Seattle.

Tate was in his mid 20’s when he hit unrestricted free agency. If a team is going to spend money on expensive free agents, they should almost exclusively spend on guys still improving and in their 20’s, like Tate. Or Michael Bennett and Cliff Avril at the time of their agreements.

The only other time to dip into free agent waters is when a player is cheap but might still be able to give you a year of solid play at a position of need. Like Kevin Williams and Ahtyba Rubin did. These were players that could contribute without harming the salary cap.

We’re not talking about those players here today, however. These older guys are like those counterfeit $20 bills you find on the street that look valuable on the surface but when you pick them up, they’re blank on the other side.


Wake me up on March 9th when players that can actually make this team better are available.

Like Jeff Allen!