Clayton: Smart contracts have set Seahawks up to keep doing business

Apr 8, 2021, 2:01 PM
Seahawks WR Tyler Lockett...
Seahawks WR Tyler Lockett doesn't take up much salary cap space in 2021 or 2022. (Getty)

The numbers are in for the Seahawks for the first month of free agency and they are interesting.

Seahawks DE Carlos Dunlap is back to take care of unfinished business

The Seahawks signed four players in free agency and traded for guard Gabe Jackson. The numbers turned out to be less than expected. The Seahawks turned Jackson’s $11 million a year contract into a three-year deal worth $22.525 million. That’s roughly around the three-year, $22.5 million deal guard Kevin Zeitler signed with the Baltimore Ravens.

What makes that interesting is those numbers represent that Zeitler and Jackson were the Seahawks’ top two options at guard. Zeitler signed first because he wanted to stay on the East Coast and Baltimore was his preferred destination.

The price in free agency for adding to the defensive line turned out to be cheaper than initially reported. It was reported defensive end Kerry Hyder signed a three-year, $16.5 million deal, but it turned out to be a two-year deal for $6.5 million, $3.25 million a year, which is $2.25 million less than reported. Defensive tackle Al Woods contract came through Wednesday. Instead of the one-year, $3 million deal that was first reported, Woods signed a one-year deal at $2.5 million.

They got tight end Gerald Everett on a one-year, $6 million contract. That’s $1 million less than the deal tight end Greg Olsen signed last offseason.

The Seahawks spent a little less than reported on their re-signings, too. It was first thought defensive end Carlos Dunlap signed for $8.8 million a year. The real deal was two-years for $13.6 million. Benson Mayowa signed a two-year contract at $7.62 million.

The offensive line re-signings also came out well. Ethan Pocic got one-year at $3 million. Cedric Ogbuehi signed a one-year, $2.3 million contract to be the backup tackle. That’s what he signed last year. This was Jordan Simmons’ restricted free agency year. To keep him as a restricted free agent, the Seahawks would have had to tender him at $2.133 million. They cut him instead and re-signed him back on a one-year, $1.2 million contract.

Special teams Pro Bowler Nick Bellore re-signed with a two-year, $4.5 million deal. Running back Chris Carson came back on a two-year, $10.425 million deal.

The big deal involved wide receiver Tyler Lockett. He did get a four-year, $69 million contract, but its structure is cap friendly.

The Seahawks gave him a signing bonus in 2021 and he gets an option bonus in 2022. By doing that, the Seahawks were able to get good cap numbers for the first two years of the deal. He has a $9.25 million cap number this year and $10.05 million cap number in 2022. Where that is important is the cap might not make a big jump next season.

Those cap numbers give the Seahawks the chance to still fit in a long-term deal with safety Jamal Adams. The $5 million cap savings from the Lockett deal leaves the Seahawks $7.682 million under the cap. They can still do business.

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