BROCK AND SALK

Is Bears QB Justin Fields a new name for Seahawks to watch?

Feb 19, 2023, 10:22 AM

Seahawks Justin Fields...

Justin Fields of the Chicago Bears throws a pass against the Detroit Lions on January 01, 2023. (Mike Mulholland/Getty Images)

(Mike Mulholland/Getty Images)

The Seahawks have a big decision to make this offseason as it pertains to their quarterback room.

Geno Smith was a Pro Bowler in 2022, but he’s a pending free agent seeking his first major payday after serving as a backup for the previous seven years. His backup last season, Drew Lock, is also a pending free agent.

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The Seahawks also have the ability to go sign a free agent like Derek Carr, or draft a quarterback as they have four picks in the first two rounds, including the No. 5 overall selection. And because they have those picks, the Hawks could also trade for a quarterback.

While it seems unlikely someone like Baltimore’s Lamar Jackson will be available, a new name got added to the potential QB carousel this week, as discussed Thursday on Seattle Sports’ Brock and Salk.

“We’ve been talking about other ideas at quarterback and we’ve brought up certainly the draft, and we’ve talked about Lamar Jackson this week, and we’ve talked about Drew Lock on sort of a cheaper deal to try to build (the roster) elsewhere. Let me throw one other name at you, and I’m curious if you would be intrigued,” Mike Salk said to his co-host, former NFL quarterback Brock Huard.

To set up the question, Salk played a sound clip of ESPN reporter Jeff Darlington discussing the situation with the Chicago Bears, who own the No. 1 overall pick in April’s draft.

“I think the Bears are going to have to step back and evaluate what kind of compensation that they would get for that first overall pick, and maybe it is a haul, maybe the Colts are willing to give that up,” Darlington said this week. “But if they’re not, and (Chicago) can also get compensation in a trade for Justin Fields, and then they can look at it and say, ‘Man, we’re actually getting (top draft quarterback prospect) Bryce Young, restarting the clock on a rookie, Justin Fields is entering the third year of a four-year deal.’ Look, I just think that there’s a lot of hard questions here that the Bears have to answer, and that’s why they have these months leading up to the draft to do exactly that.”

Washington Post insider and Baltimore radio host Jason La Canfora reported earlier in the week that the buzz around the Senior Bowl was that many NFL general managers feel that Chicago will trade Fields this offseason.

So, would Huard be interested in Fields coming to the Seahawks?

“That’s pretty intriguing to me, man,” he said. “… If Geno walks out the door, if Tampa is going to pay Geno $40 million (annually) and give him $90 million guaranteed.”

The 23-year-old Fields was the No. 11 pick in the 2021 NFL Draft by Chicago out of Ohio State, where he was a Heisman finalist in 2019.

Fields struggled as a rookie in 2021, completing just 58.9% of his passes for 1,870 yards and seven touchdowns to 10 interceptions while rushing for 420 yards and losing five fumbles in 12 games (10 starts). He did take a step forward in 2022, completing over 60% of his passes in 15 games for 2,242 yards and 17 touchdowns to 11 interceptions. Fields also rushed for over 1,100 yards with eight scores but fumbled 16 times, losing just two of them.

Huard pointed out that Fields has been sacked a ton in his career. He went down 36 times as a rookie and tied for the NFL lead in 2022 with 55 sacks taken.

“That guy has just been beat to heck in Chicago for two years. Coming out of Ohio State, I liked him. I liked him quite a bit,” Huard said.

Replied Salk: “But his team (in Chicago) was terrible. And he’s a super talented dude … When he came out, he wasn’t even supposed to run much. It was like, ‘Oh no, he’s more of a pocket guy.’ And then last year, he ran for (over 1,000 yards).”

While Huard thinks Fields is a very intriguing player, he does have some reservations in addition to how much he’s been hit and sacked in his NFL career to date.

“He can run, but can he see see it? That’s I think some of the question. Geno sees it, has anticipation, has a little bit more accuracy. (Fields) had no help around him. He got beat to heck,” he said.

That being said, they believe a trade for Fields needs to at least be on the table for the Seahawks.

“I mean, if you’re dealing with doomsday, you’ve got to put everything out there. You’ve got to deal with all the variables. And yeah, I think everything for (Seahawks GM) John Schneider… has to be on the table as they evaluate this,” Huard said.

Listen to the full second hour of Thursday’s Brock and Salk at this link or in the player below.

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