The Seattle Seahawks entered the offseason with cap space to utilize, but not everyone believes the team did enough to improve their roster. ESPN’s Bill Barnwell has the Seahawks notching the seventh-worst offseason with a No. 26 ranking among NFL teams.
Barnwell praised the Seahawks for adding depth to the offensive line and signing Bruce Irvin and Benson Mayowa to reasonably priced deals. As for the criticism, Barnwell called the selection of Texas Tech linebacker Jordyn Brooks a “stretch” and implored the Seahawks to re-sign Jadeveon Clowney.
“Bring back Clowney,” Barnwell said. “A one-year reunion makes sense for both sides, given that the Seahawks are likely to be a playoff contender and Clowney wants to restore his free-agent stock on a winner. Seattle has about $15 million in cap space, which is a little more than what he might hope to land on a one-year pact at this point. General manager John Schneider could clear out $5.4 million by releasing backup pass-catchers Jacob Hollister and David Moore.”
The Seahawks Biggest Offseason Move Remains Uncertain as Quinton Dunbar Faces Legal Challenges
The Seahawks’ biggest move of the offseason was arguably the acquisition of cornerback Quinton Dunbar. The challenge is Dunbar is facing charges on accusations that he was involved in an armed robbery. Dunbar has maintained his innocence and early indications are that the newest Seahawks cornerback has a strong case. That said, these are serious charges and his status for next season (and beyond) remains uncertain until a legal decision is reached.
After trading for Dunbar, the former Redskins cornerback was expected to play opposite Shaquill Griffin. Dunbar’s attorney Michael Grieco told ESPN 710 Seattle’s John Clayton that he has at least five witness statements backing Dunbar.
“With these five individuals, one of them had always consistently said that what the other four said was not accurate, so…the same statement (he gave) to the police is the same statement he gave me,” Grieco explained. “The other four individuals, they’ve come around and they’re telling the truth now. They told it to myself that this didn’t happen and we’re hoping that the state attorney’s office down here does the right thing.”
Clowney’s Decision Could be the Tipping Point of the Seahawks’ Offseason
If the Seahawks are somehow able to re-sign Clowney, it would immediately change their offseason outlook, even if the pass rusher was brought back on a one-year deal. It is worth noting that Barnwell’s rankings took place before the Seahawks signed Carlos Hyde, but it is unlikely the recent addition would have moved Seattle in either direction.
Aside from Clowney, there are other pass rushers who remain on the market such as Everson Griffen, but if the Seahawks were interested in the defensive end it seems likely they would have already signed the former Viking. The Seahawks are still likely to make a few moves before training camp starts, and it will be worth watching if Seattle will make any major additions.
For now, the Seahawks’ season likely depends on how well the new offensive line plays together as well as the contribution of Brooks, Irvin and Mayowa to the pass rush. If Dunbar is exonerated, he is expected to give the secondary a huge boost after its struggles in 2019. Barnwell would have liked to have seen the Seahawks focus on quality over quantity when addressing the offensive line.
“The depth approach Seattle took to its line was interesting, but adding a second guaranteed starter behind Finney would have been helpful,” Barnwell noted. “Shell appears likely to start at right tackle, but on a two-year, $9 million price tag, I would have liked to see the Seahawks try to finally find a pass-protecting tackle for Wilson by going after Bryan Bulaga.”