Heaps: What the Seahawks must be careful of when re-signing players

Jan 27, 2022, 1:49 PM
Seahawks Rasheem Green...
Rasheem Green tumbles across Jaguars QB Trevor Lawrence during the second half Sunday. (AP Photo/Ted S. Warren)
(AP Photo/Ted S. Warren)

We’re steadily approaching the start of NFL free agency, and for the Seahawks it appears that their priority is to re-sign many of their pending free agents.

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Head coach Pete Carroll said as much after the season, telling Mike Salk, “We have a lot of players that are going to be free agents that need to be on this team next year.”

So if the Seahawks do indeed go into this offseason with an emphasis on retaining their pending free agents, what mistake must the team avoid making? Former NFL quarterback Jake Heaps said the answer is clear to him.

“What they need to be careful of is spending too much money for a role player,” he said during Thursday’s edition of Jake and Stacy on 710 ESPN Seattle. “Are you spending money for a top-tier player in this league? Or are you spending money for a role player?”

Heaps pointed specifically to three pending Seahawks free agents to show what he means.

“Do I think (Pro Bowl free safety) Quandre Diggs is a top-tier player in this league? Yes. Do I think (cornerback) D.J. Reed can be a top-tier corner in this league? Yes, I do,” Heaps said. “(Defensive end) Rasheem Green, is he a top-tier pass rusher in this league? I don’t know about that. I think Rasheem Green is a role player.”

Green, who posted career highs in sacks (6.5), tackles (48), tackles for loss (six) and quarterback hits (15) in 2021, also played 67% of Seattle’s defensive snaps. But while Heaps thinks the Seahawks should re-sign the young edge rusher, he doesn’t think the team should overpay to keep him in Seattle.

“I am willing (to re-sign him) and I have my dollar amount and I am not budging from that dollar amount, that contract that I want to sign Rasheem Green to,” Heaps said. “If the market becomes too rich and Rasheem Green has to go somewhere else because of that, then so be it.”

Sticking to dollar amounts with the team’s pending free agents will be key, Heaps said, because they need to go after more impact players this offseason.

“You cannot overspend on role players,” he said. “You have to make sure the money that you are spending is on impact players that are front-line guys for you. Because you can’t sacrifice money for role players when the thing that you desperately need the most is star talent – front-line, impact, game-changing talent. That’s where I want to see their money being utilized.”

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