Bumpus thinks Seahawks’ Riq Woolen will bounce back in 2024

Apr 3, 2024, 8:06 AM | Updated: 8:07 am

Seattle Seahawks Tariq Woolen...

Tariq Woolen of the Seattle Seahawks reacts against the New York Giants at Lumen Field on October 30, 2022. (Steph Chambers/Getty Images)

(Steph Chambers/Getty Images)

The NFL announced its performance-based pay distribution for the 2023 season, and a Seattle Seahawks defender was one of the top earners.

Seattle Seahawks may not need to look far to fill hole on offensive line

The performance-based pay distribution compensates players based on their playing time as well as salary levels in order to give more money to players who are outperforming their existing contract.

For the Hawks, that was cornerback Riq Woolen, a 2022 fifth-round draft pick who picked up roughly $840,000 extra for this past season. That ranked as the 10th-highest performance-based pay in the NFL last year.

During Tuesday’s Bump and Stacy on Seattle Sports, former NFL receiver Michael Bumpus dove into Woolen’s bonus, and his expectations for the young cornerback in 2024.

“He had two interceptions and a lot of missed tackles, but he still outplayed his position in the draft, so he made ($840,000) extra dollars when it comes to performance bonuses. And this is on an off year,” Bumpus said.

Woolen, a Pro Bowler as a rookie in 2022, didn’t build off that season like many expected him to in 2023. He wasn’t as good in coverage, and as Bump noted, his tackling was hardly a strong point. He actually spent some time on the bench due to his tackle at one point during the season.

But Bumpus thinks Woolen can shine again next season.

“I really believe Riq Woolen is going to come back next year and be even better. The biggest knock on Riq is that he wasn’t the greatest tackler. You can say that about everybody on the defense. He’s only played (cornerback) for so many years. I think he’s going to get better at that,” he said.

“But (this bonus) just lets you know the value that you’ve gotten out of Riq Woolen, even though you feel like he had a down year,” Bumpus later said. “He had a Pro Bowl year his rookie year, a down year his second year. But he outplayed his draft position, so that’s why he’s getting all these bonuses. So it’s confusing when you look at how Riq Woolen performed, but I think he’s going to have a bounceback year. I think you’re going have two lockdown corners on the outside. I’m excited to see how he digests this year, what he works on and how he comes back.”

Listen to the full second hour of Tuesday’s Bump and Stacy at this link or in the player near the top of this story.

More on the Seattle Seahawks

Why Bump has hopes for unexpected Seattle Seahawks’ position
Seahawks Mock Draft Roundup: Could Penix be reunited with Grubb?
• Huard’s Seattle Seahawks Draft Profile: Fullback option for offense
• Huard: What next phase of Seattle Seahawks’ offseason looks like
• What John Schneider said about Seahawks’ offensive line ‘need’
• Who needs to be a breakout player for the Seahawks in 2024?

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