Seahawks Pro Bowler Could Bolt for Struggling AFC Team, Says Analyst

Pete Carroll

Getty The Seahawks will likely want to sign Geno Smith to a new contract.

The Seattle Seahawks are likely hoping Geno Smith does not find a sizable market when free agency begins on March 13, 2023. Bleacher Report’s Kristopher Knox believes the Colts could be a threat to poach Smith away from Seattle.

“While Smith doesn’t have the resume of the GOAT, he’s been arguably better than Brady in 2022,” Knox wrote on January 13, 2022. “During a resurgent season, Smith led the league in completion percentage (69.8) and posted an impressive 100.9 passer rating. At 32 years old, Smith could be a fit for virtually any team with an opening at QB.

“The Indianapolis Colts should be particularly high on Smith, as they appear a quarterback away from being relevant in the AFC South. Indy has a star running back in Jonathan Taylor, a defense that ranked 15th in yards allowed this season and some good young receivers in Michael Pittman Jr. and Alec Pierce.”

Smith Is Projected to Land 2-Year, $78.6 Million Contract

Indianapolis is projected to have $19.7 million in cap space this offseason, a number that could expand with certain roster moves. Smith is in line for a massive raise from his $3.5 million salary, but the veteran quarterback also reached an additional $2 million thanks to incentives reached this season.

Spotrac estimates Smith’s market value to be a two-year, $78.6 million contract. Teams like the Colts can get creative with how they structure Smith’s deal to fit within the salary cap constraints.

Yet, the Colts have failed miserably when opting to add a veteran quarterback over drafting a signal-caller to develop. Indianapolis struggled to find significant success with Philip Rivers, Carson Wentz or Matt Ryan. It would be a surprise if the Colts did not explore selecting a quarterback in the upcoming draft, especially with the No. 4 pick.

Carroll on Seahawks Future QB: ‘Our System Is Really Good’

There was a brief period of time when the Seahawks defeated the Rams but did not yet know their playoff fate. Seahawks head coach Pete Carroll discussed Smith’s future with the team and offered significant praise for the veteran’s play in 2022. Carroll also left the door open for potential change given both Smith and Drew Lock are free agents.

“Well, we got work to do, but our system is really good,” Carroll explained during a January 8 postgame press conference. “System is really good, what we’re asking these guys to do. For him [Smith] to come in [as a] first year starter and in a five year [layoff] or whatever it is, to execute like he’s done all year long. Like, I think [he had] a 69.8% completion percentage for the season and all the touchdowns and all the plays he’s made. I think our quarterback position is great, but he’s gonna be a free agent. So, we got work to do.

“We never got a chance to see Drew [Lock], but I’ve seen a lot of him and I like what he does, too. So, I think our quarterback situation, if we can get ’em signed, is a great situation going forward. We know what we got.”

The Seahawks Have Other QB Options Beyond Geno

The reality is it is not just Smith who will have options, as Seattle has multiple viable paths the team could take at quarterback this offseason. The Seahawks could opt to go the cheaper route by selecting a quarterback with one of their first-round picks.

Seattle also has the franchise tag the team can use if they are unable to reach a long-term agreement with Smith. Using the tag would give the Seahawks another season to see Smith as the team’s starting quarterback before making a decision to give the Pro Bowler a sizable deal.