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Moore: 6 veterans the Seahawks could cut to free cap space

Could the Seahawks cut Bradley McDougald to clear cap space? (Getty)

The Seahawks still have $16.1 million of salary-cap space, but a lot of that will go toward draft choices and the practice squad, and John Schneider still likes to have room to maneuver during the season.

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They might not have to cut a player or do much in the way of finding more space through other methods if they sign a free-agent running back such as Devonta Freeman or especially Carlos Hyde. Freeman’s signing, if it happened, would likely be in the neighborhood of $4 million while John Clayton said Hyde could possibly come in near the veteran’s minimum of $1 million.

But what if they make a late bid for Jadeveon Clowney or one of the other pass rushers on the market such as Everson Griffen, Michael Bennett or Clay Matthews? Then you’re talking anywhere from $5 million to $12 million and would have to make some tough decisions with your roster.

In my estimation, the Seahawks have six vulnerable players, some more expendable than others. Your list might differ from mine, but I’m putting them in the order of who I’d part with first and who I’d part with last.

1) LB K.J. Wright: Putting sentiment aside, cutting Wright would give the Seahawks another $6.5 million under the cap. The drafting of first-rounder Jordyn Brooks makes Wright more expendable, and the Seahawks would like to get Cody Barton on the field more often too. Add in that Bruce Irvin can play strong-side linebacker as well. When you consider Wright’s level of play and what you’re paying him, is it worth keeping him and obstructing development of the younger players? There’s also this question to consider: Would you rather have another guy who could help your pass rush or Wright?

2) DL Branden Jackson: No offense to him, but he’s a rotational defensive lineman who hasn’t really stood out to me. The Seahawks would save $2.1 million by releasing him.

3) C Joey Hunt: He did a good job replacing Justin Britt in the second half of the season, but Hunt is generally considered too small to be a full-time starting center. The Seahawks look like they’re going with free-agent acquisition B.J. Finney at that position this year. They could have Ethan Pocic as his backup, though Pocic has been a disappointment in his first three years here and seems to remain on the roster more because of his versatility than his production. The Seahawks would save $2.1 million by cutting Hunt.

4) WR David Moore: I think I like Moore more than others, and I also just wanted to write “Moore more” back to back in a sentence for no good reason. He’s made 43 receptions for 746 yards and seven touchdowns the last two years, averaging 17.4 yards a catch. He could be viewed as expendable with the signing of free agent Phillip Dorsett, the drafting of Freddie Swain and the potential of 2019 rookie John Ursua. Though no one has said as much, the Seahawks might also re-sign Josh Gordon if he is reinstated by the league after serving his fifth suspension in eight years last season. Cutting Moore would save the Seahawks $2.1 million.

5) S Bradley McDougald: I’m a McDougald fan and I hope the Seahawks keep him. He didn’t play as well last year as he did in 2018, but it was still apparently better than what Pete Carroll thought he would have gotten from second-rounder Marquise Blair. Do you stick with McDougald for another season or cut him to make room for Blair this year? A risky proposition in my book, especially since McDougald is reasonably affordable at $4 million.

6) TE Jacob Hollister: I don’t care if the tight end room is crammed to the gills after the free-agent signing of Greg Olson, re-signing of Luke Willson, return of Will Dissly and drafting of Colby Parkinson and Stephen Sullivan. Hollister was the team’s leading receiver in the last seven games of the season, forming a good connection with Russell Wilson, proving he’s worth $3.25 million to keep around.

Follow 710 ESPN Seattle’s Jim Moore on Twitter.

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