Salary expert: Why Derek Carr may not be a fallback option for Seahawks

Jan 20, 2023, 11:50 AM
Seahawks Derek Carr...
Derek Carr of the Las Vegas Raiders throws a pass against the Seattle Seahawks at Lumen Field on November 27, 2022. (Steph Chambers/Getty Images)
(Steph Chambers/Getty Images)

The big question with the Seahawks this offseason is what happens at quarterback?

Seattle had a pretty good one in 2022 in Geno Smith, who made the Pro Bowl, but he’s a pending free agent after his career year. So, too, is Smith’s backup, Drew Lock.

Seahawks GM John Schneider: ‘We want Geno to come back’

The Seahawks also own two first-round picks, including the No. 5 overall selection, in April’s draft.

The expectation seems to be that Smith will be back in Seattle, but what about the chances another veteran quarterback comes to the Seahawks to start instead?

Three-time Pro Bowl quarterback Derek Carr’s time in Las Vegas appears to be done as he was benched for the final two games of the 2022 season. He still has three years left on his contract, so he could be traded this offseason. But Carr’s deal doesn’t have much in the way of guaranteed dollars, so some expect him to be released this offseason before more of his contract becomes guaranteed.

Someone who thinks Carr will ultimately be cut is Spotrac founder and managing editor Michael Ginnitti, who joined Seattle Sports 710 AM’s Wyman and Bob on Wednesday.

While some are thinking of Carr as a potential fallback option for the Seahawks if things don’t workout with Smith this offseason, Ginnitti doesn’t see the Seahawks as a potential landing spot for the nine-year veteran.

First off, Ginitti explained why no team will trade for Carr this offseason.

“I actually think there’s not a team that’s going to acquire Derek Carr (in a trade). I think there’s going to be too many mountains to get over there,” he said. “He’s got the full no-trade clause, he’s gonna want to go to the right situation for himself. But I’m not sure there’s a team that wants to bring that contract in, even if you can restructure it once you do so.”

Ultimately, Carr will likely hit the open market in less than a month for a key reason.

“I think there’s going to be an outright release there on Feb. 14, before that guarantee kicks in,” Ginnitti said. “… Then it’s going to be a bidding war to get a brand-new contract for a player that (a team) think is an upgrade for their current position.”

The timing just doesn’t make sense for Carr and the Seahawks to match up, Ginnitti said.

“The problem for Seattle is if he’s released Feb. 14, he can be signed immediately,” Ginnitti said.

NFL free agency officially starts March 15 for pending free agents, but those under contract for 2023 who are released are then able to sign with any team right away.

“And some of those teams out there that absolutely need a quarterback and they know that at that point will be bidding for him immediately,” Ginnitti said. “I’m not sure Seattle is going to know what their situation is at that point … Do they do they know how far along they are with Geno Smith? And then they obviously have those draft picks waiting for them in April. So to me, they’re going to be farther down the road with this quarterback decision where Derek Carr might sign with a team Feb. 20.”

Listen to the full conversation with Ginnitti at this link or in the player below.

More from Ginnitti: Salary expert breaks down a Seahawks-Geno Smith deal

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