Ex-Seahawks Quarterback Joins Rival: Report

Pete Carroll John Schneider

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

Former Seattle Seahawks quarterback Jacob Eason is joining the enemy just in time for the postseason. Eason had a November 14, 2022 tryout with the 49ers, per the NFL transaction wire, and is now signing with San Francisco.

“The 49ers have signed QB Jacob Eason and WR Dazz Newsome to their practice squad,” ESPN’s Field Yates tweeted on November 15.” They placed WR Tajae Sharpe on the practice squad injured list and released QB Kurt Benkert.”

The news comes days after Eason also worked out for the Cowboys following his November 7 release by the Panthers. Eason landed with the Seahawks in October 2021 after the quarterback was released by the Colts. Seattle labeled Eason as part of the offseason quarterback competition, but the former highly touted signal-caller was always a long shot to have a chance at the QB1 gig.

The Seahawks opted to release Eason in August prior to finalizing the 53-man roster. Seattle preferred to sign veteran Sean Mannion to the team’s practice squad instead of retaining Eason as a developmental quarterback.

San Francisco Lost Lance for the Season

Seattle does find itself slightly ahead of San Francisco in the NFC West standings. Eason makes for an interesting addition for the Niners given his familiarity with the Seahawks system. Seattle has one more matchup against San Francisco on December 15 and lost the initial rivalry game 27-7 on September 18.

The Niners lost starter Trey Lance to a season-ending injury in September prompting the team to need Jimmy Garoppolo, who San Francisco attempted to trade throughout the offseason. The 49ers also have quarterback Brock Purdy on the active roster and released Kurt Benkert from the team’s practice squad to make room for Eason.

Jacob Eason Drew Comparisons to Carson Palmer

Eason’s NFL career continues to be an interesting study as the once famed five-star prospect has struggled to find a permanent home. The 49ers mark Eason’s fourth team during his first three NFL seasons.

After a standout collegiate career at Washington, Eason fell to the fourth round of the NFL draft where the Colts snatched the quarterback who was once believed to be destined to be a first-round quarterback coming out of high school. Following his Huskies career, NFL.com draft analyst Lance Zierlein compared Eason to former Cardinals quarterback Carson Palmer.

“His elite size and arm talent are reminiscent of Carson Palmer, but issues with pocket poise and getting through progressions cleanly are more reminiscent of Brock Osweiler,” Zierlein wrote in his pre-draft profile. “Eason is fun to watch when he’s ripping throws around the field and taking deep play-action shots, but a lack of mobility inside and outside the pocket is troubling, considering his ineffectiveness when pressured.

“He’s relatively inexperienced and should continue to develop from the pocket, but poise is hard to fix, and handling exotic blitz packages is not a given. He’s a pro-style, play-action-based quarterback with average starter potential and an average backup floor.”

The Seahawks Plan to Sign Smith to a Long-Term Contract

The Seahawks face their own quarterback decisions, including what to make of Smith’s resurgence this season. NFL Network’s Ian Rapoport reported that Smith has done enough for Seattle to make the quarterback a long-term offer this offseason. Backup quarterback Drew Lock will also be a free agent in 2023.

“My understanding is Geno Smith has in fact done enough to convince Seattle that he should be their starting quarterback in the 2023 season,” Rapoport detailed on November 13. “For Geno Smith it has been a series of one-year deals in Seattle. He’s been the backup to Russell Wilson for years and years. Now, the Seahawks are expected to make a long-term contract extension offer to him. Not during the season likely, but after the season to make sure that he is there for the foreseeable future.”