JOHN CLAYTON

Clayton: Seahawks have less options with Antonio Brown suspended, opt-out trend

Jul 31, 2020, 2:21 PM
Seahawks interest Antonio Brown...
Free-agent WR Antonio Brown was handed an eight-game suspension by the NFL. (Getty)
(Getty)

Antonio Brown got what he asked for.

A couple days after tweeted out his third NFL retirement in a year, he came back and tweeted he wanted the NFL to decide his fate. The NFL responded Friday by announcing Brown is being suspended for at least eight games.

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It could get worse. Brown was suspended after pleading to two counts of assaulting a moving van driver and for a lawsuit by an artist he hired over alleged intimidating text messages. Where it could get worse is that the league still is investigating a lawsuit involving his former trainer, who has accused Brown of sexual assault on three separate occasions.

Safe to say, that should end the Seahawks’ interest in signing him, something Russell Wilson has been pushing. The suspension would start the first week of the season. He wouldn’t be allowed to be with the team during the suspension, meaning he would only be available for the final eight games.

If he signs with the Seahawks, he would only be present for the three-week training period and be part of 14 padded practices. It isn’t worth it. Early word, by the way, is that Brown isn’t expected to challenge the suspension.

As good as Brown is as a talent, I’ve felt it wasn’t worth the headache of having him on the roster. There wouldn’t be enough passes in Seattle’s offense to keep Brown happy. Plus, Tyler Lockett and DK Metcalf were voted in the NFL Networks’ Top 100 list. Thanks to the trade into the bottom of the second round in the 2019 NFL Draft to get Metcalf, the Seahawks have one of the best one-two duos in football.

On top of that, the Seahawks have the 4.3 speed of Phillip Dorsett, as well as David Moore and John Ursua. And if Josh Gordon comes off suspension, he could be re-signed. Though Gordon isn’t as talented as Brown, but he would be a better fit.

Now you wonder if Brown will tweet out another retirement.

Opt-out trend impacts Seahawks

While the Seahawks await the results of COVID-19 testing for training camp, there is plenty going on. The NFL and NFLPA are finalizing the final details of opt outs. Once that is complete, players will have seven days to decide if they want to play this year and have their contracts rolled to next year.

The big trend in the opt outs is that offensive linemen and defensive tackles are most of the players doing so. That’s understandable.

This does affect the Seahawks, who are looking for a veteran backup defensive tackle who can stop the run. Nine of the first 33 players to opt out are defensive tackles. While the Seahawks have been great in finding backup defensive tackles in the past, the price might be a little steeper than it was a week ago.

Eddie Goldman of the Chicago Bears, Star Lotulelei of the Buffalo Bills and Michael Pierce of the Minnesota Vikings decided not to play this season, so those teams will be looking for starters. Damon Harrison, Tim Jernigan and Mike Daniels are the best defensive tackles available. Harrison, however, is considering not playing this year because of the virus.

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