What should Seahawks do with Geno, Adams and Wagner? ESPN’s Yates weighs in

Jan 26, 2024, 11:58 AM

Seattle Seahawks Bobby Wagner Jamal Adams...

Jamal Adams of the Seattle Seahawks reacts to a play by Bobby Wagner on Oct. 22, 2023. (Jane Gershovich/Getty Images)

(Jane Gershovich/Getty Images)

To say this is a big offseason for the Seattle Seahawks would be quite the understatement.

Why ESPN’s Yates thinks Seattle Seahawks will hire Dan Quinn as coach

The franchise is looking for a head coach to replace Pete Carroll, who had been in Seattle since January of 2010. The Seahawks will also have a number of key decisions to make when it comes to big names on the roster.

During a Thursday visit with Seattle Sports’ Wyman and Bob, ESPN’s Field Yates was asked about the futures for three of the Seahawks’ most notable players.

Yates thinks Hawks should build around Geno Smith

Geno Smith, 33, just finished his second year as Seattle’s starting quarterback, starting 15 games.

Smith’s numbers across the board went down compared to his Pro Bowl 2022 campaign, but he was still a solid player who led the Seahawks to an 8-7 record during his starts.

This past season was the first of a three-year contract for Smith, but this offseason is the easiest time for the Seahawks to get out of his deal.

So what should Seattle do? Yates thinks the Hawks should stick with Smith.

“You know what my problem is? There are elements of sort of covering the league at large that get lost on you. There are times in which you’re not as in the weeds on some of the stuff that a team is dealing with, and then there are times in which I feel like it helps you out a lot because I also watch quarterbacks around the NFL that aren’t good all the time. I know what a good quarterback looks like now, and I know Geno is a (great) football player,” Yates said. “His accuracy, his ball placement is terrific, his deep ball accuracy is great … He’s tough … It certainly looks like he is the leader of that team on offense.”

Yates thinks the Seahawks should build around Smith going forward, especially because his contract over the next two years is reasonable.

That means instead of taking a quarterback in the first round, Yates thinks Seattle should focus on the other side of the ball, which was again a big weakness for the Seahawks in 2023.

“When we get to the draft and pick 16 is in play for Seattle … my mindset is let’s get the best defensive player on the board. Somebody that can help defend the run would go a long way in my opinion right now in Seattle,” Yates said. “If you play defense, you’ve got a chance to be on the shortlist of prospects to be taken at pick No. 16.”

Is Jamal Adams’ time in Seattle over?

One of the biggest trades of Carroll’s tenure was ahead of the 2020 season when Seattle traded two first-round picks, a third-round pick and a starting defender to the New York Jets for safety Jamal Adams.

Adams’ first year with the Seahawks was impressive as he earned All-Pro honors while tallying 9.5 sacks in 12 games, an NFL record for sacks by a defensive back.

But Adams’ production took a big hit in 2021 when he had no sacks and little impact around the line of scrimmage in 12 games. Adams played just one game in 2022 due to injury, and he missed eight games in 2023 due to injury, as well.

Adams has two years left on his contract, and the Seahawks would take on roughly $21 million in dead cap if they cut him this offseason.

“It’s a tricky one there,” Yates said. “I think with Jamal Adams, obviously things have not gone as planned in pretty much every way between the health and performance, some of the attitude stuff … Jamal is one that basically this comes down to is it palatable to release him? In normal circumstances, no, but there are certain times where you just kind of bite the bullet.”

Should Seattle Seahawks bring back Bobby Wagner?

Bobby Wagner, a perennial Pro Bowler and All-Pro who was released by Seattle after the 2021 season, returned to the Seahawks in free agency last offseason. Wagner spent 2022 with the Los Angeles Rams before signing a one-year deal to return to the Seahawks for 2023.

Wagner played nearly every defensive snap for the Seahawks, tallying an NFL-leading 183 tackles, including 3.5 sacks and 11 tackles for loss.

Wagner is heading to free agency for the third offseason in a row, and if he returns to the Seahawks, he wouldn’t be playing under Carroll, one of two head coaches he’s had in his 12-year NFL career.

“Bobby, it’s a tricky one for me because there are probably different metrics that you can size up and you can say, ‘Hey, he’s not this or not that compared to where he was in the past,’ and yet I just have a hard time thinking that the leadership, the intensity, the consistency, the model that he is for the younger players. To me, that is almost always worth having around,” Yates said. ” … I’m a Bobby Wagner guy. I am a thorough advocate for finding a way to keep him around for as long as possible. But I understand they’ve got some difficult decisions to make this upcoming offseason, and that’s because they’ve had some really, really good draft picks that have turned into some really good contracts on second deals on that roster.”

Listen to Wyman and Bob’s full conversation with Field Yates at this link or in the player near the top of this story.

More on the Seattle Seahawks

ESPN draft analyst gives 2 prospects who seem like Seahawks
Draft prospects to help Seahawks on offensive, defensive lines
Stacy Rost’s most and least intriguing names in Seahawks coach search
What to know about Seahawks coach candidate Patrick Graham
Why Kafka is a Seahawks coach candidate despite poor Giants offense
Seahawks Draft: ESPN’s Miller on J.J. McCarthy’s upside, Penix’s stock

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