The idea of a Russell Wilson trade first entered the offseason discussions on Super Bowl Sunday with NFL Network’s Mike Garafolo, Tom Pelissero and Ian Rapoport reporting the Seattle Seahawks had received calls from other teams about their franchise quarterback. The NFL insiders added there was “no chance” the Seahawks were trading Wilson.
Less than a month later, the Seahawks have progressed from not only listening to calls but making inquiries of their own, per ESPN’s Dianna Russini. What happened in the last month likely played a large role in the Seahawks potentially opening up the door to the possibility of trading the face of their franchise. Wilson’s media tour combined with his agent’s passive-aggressive trade request complete with a list of potential teams made the Seahawks’ original stance impractical.
“It’s a real thing where Russell Wilson is not happy there and his agent is going to deny that they are demanding a trade,” Russini explained on The Pat McAfee Show. “And I learned early in my career, too. You have to be very careful with the wording of asking for a trade, demanding a trade. …The word demand in reference to Russell Wilson, I don’t sense that, but I know there’s been calls made on both sides. Going to Seattle and from Seattle to other teams.”
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Wilson Wants Out of Seattle, Says NFL Insider
As a refresher, Wilson (via his agent) would okay a trade to the Cowboys, Bears, Saints or Raiders. Russini later clarified that the Seahawks are not “shopping” Wilson, but it feels like a bit of semantics. If the Seahawks are making calls to other teams about a potential Wilson trade, the organization is taking a much more aggressive stance than when the rumors emerged on Super Bowl Sunday.
“I was told the Seahawks are not ‘shopping’ Russell Wilson but calls made from other teams inquiring have been answered,” Russini noted on Twitter.
All this leads to a very convoluted stance by both sides with Wilson denying he is demanding a trade, and the Seahawks emphasizing they are not shopping Wilson. Yet, the Seahawks have to explore all their options in case Wilson decides to put even more pressure on the team by formally demanding a trade.
“I think it’s their way of saying, ‘We want out,'” Russini explained. “It’s pretty clear. I think if you’re going to give a list, like ‘Hey, I really don’t want to cheat on my husband Kevin, but here’s a list of three guys that I, you know, if I’m going to do it. Here’s the list.'”
If the Seahawks Are Not Listening to Trade Offers, They Are ‘Committing Malpractice’
NFL Network’s Mike Silver described the situation between Wilson and the Seahawks as “worse than what I previously believed.” Silver added that the Seahawks would be “committing malpractice” if they are not entertaining offers from teams.
“I think the situation is worse than what I previously believed, so, yeah my thoughts have somewhat evolved,” Silver noted on NFL Total Access. “…Listen, if the Seahawks are not at least having conversations about the possibility of a Russell Wilson trade right now, they’re committing malpractice because clearly, he is that unhappy. It’s not like he just made one comment after the season. He made two or three and when your agent comes out publicly and says, ‘I would play for one of these four teams,’ and your client has a no-trade clause then you’re not doing that if you just strictly want to stay.”
Publicly, the Seahawks have remained quiet about Wilson’s latest comments and the ongoing trade rumors. Silver noted the Seahawks are “not happy” with how Wilson has handled his frustrations.
“The Seahawks are not happy with the way this has gone down since the end of the season,” Silver added. “Obviously, you alluded to the cap hit and it’s a complicated situation. Andrew, I believe that they will obviously listen to offers from any of those four teams, and Wilson does have some control because of the no-trade clause. I think that Pete Carroll regards himself as a problem-solver and will try to figure out a way to patch this up.”
The Seahawks are in a bind because trading Wilson before June 1st would result in a $39 million cap hit. Wilson also has a no-trade clause allowing him to dictate his potential next destination and severely decreasing the Seahawks’ chances of landing the best possible deal. It would be in both parties’ best interest to salvage the relationship, but it is going to be a long offseason before the situation is in any way resolved.