Proposed Trade Has Seahawks Sending $3.6 Million Ex-Starter to AFC Contender

Pete Carroll John Schneider

Getty Seahawks general manager John Schneider (left) and head coach Pete Carroll appear to have won the Russell Wilson trade.

The Seattle Seahawks are not exactly sellers ahead of the NFL trade deadline but may have an opportunity to move on from former starting cornerback Sidney Jones. Thanks to the emergence of rookie duo Tariq Woolen and Coby Bryant along with veteran Mike Jackson, Jones has fallen out of the secondary rotation creating plenty of chatter that Seattle is looking to move on from the former Washington standout. Pro Football Focus’ Brad Spielberger suggested a trade proposal that has the Seahawks sending Jones to the Bengals in exchange for a 2023 sixth-round pick.

“Jones showed promise as a full-time starter from Week 11 through the end of the 2021 season, with an 80.6 coverage grade that ranked 12th among cornerbacks, a 20.7% forced incompletion percentage that ranked fifth and a 0.47 receiving yards allowed per coverage snap figure that ranked fourth,” Spielberger wrote on October 25, 2022.

“Cincinnati has a great No. 1 outside cornerback in Chidobe Awuzie but has still not done well to address the spot opposite him, with Eli Apple continuing to struggle to the tune of a 39.5 coverage grade through Week 7.”

Is a Late Round Draft Pick Worth Trading Jones?

The question the Seahawks have to answer is whether trading away Jones for just a late-round selection is worth it? Just as valuable as the draft pick is the potential financial savings for Seattle as Jones signed a one-year, $3.6 million contract that comes with a $1.6 base salary.

A sixth-round pick to the Seahawks may be more valuable than to most teams as general manager John Schneider has a history of finding late-round gems. Some of the Seahawks’ recent day-three selections include Woolen, receiver Freddie Swain, running back Travis Homer and defensive tackle Quinton Jefferson. Yet, there is also some value in having Jones on the roster as insurance with the playoff push approaching just in case the team sustains an unfortunate injury.

Will the Seahawks Be Buyers at the NFL Trade Deadline?

The bigger question is whether the Seahawks will strike another deal for an impact player, but the team only has an estimated $3.4 million in available cap space to absorb a veteran, per Over the Cap. The lack of available cap space has ESPN’s Brady Henderson predicting moving on from Jones as Seattle’s most likely move.

“They’ve got plenty of draft capital, with extra first- and second-round picks from the Russell Wilson trade, as well as an extra fifth-rounder,” Henderson detailed on October 30. “But they have only around $3 million in cap space and have already reworked two of their veteran contracts to free up money. That gives them more incentive to find a trade partner for cornerback Sidney Jones IV and the remainder of the $2.6 million he’s making this season.”

According to NFL Network, Seattle has already received “calls of inquiry” regarding Jones’ status. Time will tell if the Seahawks can find a new landing spot for Jones prior the November 1st trade deadline at 4 p.m. Eastern.

“Veteran corners are tough to find, and Jones has plenty of experience,” NFL Network’s Ian Rapoport, Tom Pelissero and Mike Garafolo wrote on October 30. “He’s not expensive ($1.277 million for the rest of this season) and could fill a quick need for a CB-needy team. Seattle has received some calls of inquiry here.”