But Who’s out?
Not quite yet, but within the next couple of weeks Percy Harvin is going to be put on the Seattle Seahawks 53 man roster. We are all finally going to experience first hand what this guy will bring to the offense.
— Ian Rapoport (@RapSheet) October 17, 2013
Harvin out of the slot and returning punts and kicks was just devastating to many of the Minnesota Vikings opponents last year and the prospect of that kind of performance in Seattle is enough to make any fan drool.
By adding Harvin to the roster the Seahawks will have to do something else- drop a name from the roster.
Who do they drop?
Given there are already 5 wide receivers listed on the Seattle roster I think it’s safe to assume that Harvin is going to replace a current, active WR on the roster.
The final choice may turn a few heads and raise a few eyebrows.
Here are the players I suspect are under consideration of being cut that day.
Golden Tate has been solid for the Seahawks this in 2013 but that doesn’t mean he’s not expendable. EVERYONE is expendable at some point in their career. The thing that is working against Tate in this situation is his contract status.
Tate is a free agent at the end of the year. Sure, I suppose the Seahawks could slap the franchise tag on him but I’m not sure Golden is worth the price of the franchise tag that Seattle would be forced to pay.
There has also been zero talk about him getting a contract extension so far. Might Pete Carroll and company let him walk? It’s certainly feasible.
Listed as #1 on the Seattle Seahawk’s wide receiver depth chart Sidney Rice is certainly having a very slow start from a statistical standpoint. Through 6 games Rice has just 12 catches for 181 yards. That’s not exactly #1 guy type of numbers.
An X factor is that Rice is buddy-buddy with Percy Harvin. They were team mates in Minnesota and Percy might not be comfortable with the idea that his buddy got the boot so that he could join the roster. We also know that keeping Harvin happy is an important factor if you want him to perform.
Like Tate, Rice also might be expendable due to his contract. Despite his weak stats Rice is making $8.5 million bucks this year. He also has another 2 years and 17.5 million dollars to go on that contract.
Are John Schneider and Pete Carroll going to continue to pay him that kind of money given his falling production? Rice is going to have to step it up big time if he doesn’t want to be the fall guy.
The leading receiver in 2013 for Seattle, Doug Baldwin has been pretty darn good in his 3rd year since signing as undrafted free agent from Stanford.
Baldwin has 21 catches for 344 yards so far which nearly matches already his injury filled season of 2012.
So with performance not an issue for Baldwin then you have to look at his contract to see if he’s expendable. He’s certainly not overpaid considering his making a relatively meager amount in 2013 of $560k for the year. On the contrary, that’s a bargain for this guy.
Like Tate, Baldwin is a free agent at the end of the year with one notable difference. Tate is an unrestricted free agent. Baldwin will be a restricted free agent. That means Seattle will have the right to match any deal that Baldwin might negotiate with another team.
It also means compensation for the Hawks in terms of a draft pick if Baldwin were to leave.
Given his high production, low-cost, and relative better contract status, I don’t see Baldwin getting the axe.
Jermaine Kearse is currently Seattle’s #4 WR. He’s also been picking up the bulk of the kickoff return duties. Kearse in a limited amount of playing time has 7 catches for 111 yards.
Kearse had an outstanding pre-season. Some of his catches this year have been jaw dropping to say the least. Jermaine gives a lot of the credit for his improved play to his laser eye surgeon as he had that procedure done during the off-season.
His contract certainly is not an issue. He’s scheduled to make $480k this year and only $570k in 2014. After that Kearse is still a restricted free agent.
For the same reasons Baldwin stays, Kearse stays as well.
The only other wide out on the Hawk’s roster is Bryan Walters. Walters was moved up from the practice squad recently when the Seahawks cut wide receiver Stephen Williams in a somewhat surprising move.
We saw Walters play a bit in the pre-season and impressive is not the word I would use to describe it.
He dropped a few that he shouldn’t have in the limited chances he had.
Obviously Walters is not an expense given that he has 3 catches in his entire 4 year career. His contract cannot be considered a problem.
What works against is Bryan is his ability. He’s just not a guy that’s going to go out there and play to level that no one expected. He’s been floating around practice squads for 4 years now. What you have seen there is what you get when it comes to Bryan Walters.
So who gets it then?
I personally believe that this is going to boil down to Walters vs. Rice.
Despite his performance and the cost savings cutting Sidney Rice would get the Hawks, I don’t think it’s him. The Seahawks will let go Bryan Walters for the reasons I mentioned already.
Rice will get the 2nd half of his $8.5 million this year but Rice will likely be cut during the next offseason. It only costs them another $4 million to keep him for the remainder of the year; relative chump-change it today’s NFL.
For now Seattle is going to want to make their run in the second half and in the playoffs.
You don’t make that run with Bryan Walters on the roster over Sidney Rice.