Seahawks Predicted to Sign ‘Logical’ $58 Million Contract

Pete Carroll

Getty The Seahawks are likely to offer QB Geno Smith a big-money deal.

The Seattle Seahawks could be bracing for a major signing this offseason.

As the Seahawks’ 2022 season comes to a close with a playoff berth on the line in Week 18, they’ll eventually shift their attention to offseason priorities. Whether or not they make the playoffs will likely have little impact on their objective in re-signing Geno Smith.

The 32-year-old veteran has proven to be a franchise quarterback in his first season as a starter with Seattle, leading the league in completion percentage (70.2 percent) and ranking fifth in passer rating (102.9). Cody Benjamin of CBS Sports predicts that Smith will re-sign with the Seahawks on a two-year, $59 million deal ($29.5 million per year), which would make him the 12th-highest paid quarterback in the league for the 2023 season.

“Like Jones, Smith has seen his value skyrocket thanks to an improbable ascent as a decision-maker,” said Benjamin. “The former Jets flop and longtime backup was surprisingly far more efficient and explosive than his star predecessor, Russell Wilson, in 2022. Pressured to deliver down the stretch for a team with a porous defense, his forced throws have increased, rendering him more good than great. He’s also 32 with only one full season of passable production under his belt. Still, for Seattle, which may well prioritize defensive reinforcements and has now witnessed him grow in the system for four years, he’s a logical short-term investment.”

Why Smith Will Sign Big-Money Contract

Smith started off the season very hot, but he has cooled down in recent weeks. After Seattle started out the season 6-4 and leading the NFC West, they’ve gone 2-4 since. In order for the Seahawks to make it to the playoffs, they need to beat the Los Angeles Rams and hope the Green Bay Packers fall to the Detroit Lions.

While Smith may not be dominating the individual ranks the way he did the first few weeks of the season, Tyler Alsin of Field Gulls actually points out there’s been very little regression in Smith’s game over recent weeks.

“First eight games: 13 TD to 3 INT, 19 sacks, 1924 yards, 72.7% completion,” said Alsin. “The next seven games: 14 TD to 6 INT, 20 sacks, 1962 yards, 68.82% completion.”

In other words, Smith’s turnovers have gone up a bit, while his league-high completion percentage his dipped slightly. It’s not exactly a regression that would indicate Smith is a fluke.

As far as DVOA, Smith was the second-best quarterback in the league through the first five weeks of the season. After 17 weeks, Smith still ranks as one of the best quarterbacks in the league at No. 6.

“A month in, Geno Smith was the second best quarterback in the NFL by DVOA,” said Alsin. “After three straight losses including Sunday to the Kansas City Chiefs? He’s sixth.So while Allen and Mahomes may no longer ‘bow at the altar of Geno,’ he has now – with only two games remaining – officially held up for an entire season. Smith’s DVOA and Yards Above Replacement are better than Jalen Hurts, Joe Burrow, Dak Prescott, or Trevor Lawrence. All quarterbacking playoff teams at the moment.”

Smith’s Projected Market Value is Over $36 Million Per Year

According to Spotrac, Smith’s annual projected salary value is $36.1 million per season across three years. That would make him the ninth-highest paid quarterback in the league.

There will be a number of teams seeking a franchise-level quarterback and Smith fits that category. However, there also won’t be any shortage of franchise quarterbacks available in free agency and trade, which further complicates Smith’s market value.

The $29 million cap figure for Smith may be below his market value. But the fact that Smith has only turned in only one quality season as a starter, combined with the inflated number of quarterbacks who will be available may drive down his actual value.

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