FEBRUARY 28: Rice has officially been released by the Seahawks, the team announced today (Twitter link).
FEBRUARY 21: The Seahawks are releasing Sidney Rice, a league source tells Adam Schefter of ESPN.com (on Twitter). The wide receiver signed a five-year, $41MM contract in July 2011. Jason Fitzgerald of OverTheCap.com (via Twitter) estimates that parting ways with Rice will give the Seahawks an extra $7.3MM in cap space.
Rice, 27, missed eight games this past season due to injury, a common theme throughout his career. The veteran tallied just 15 receptions for 231 yards and three touchdowns before an ACL tear ended his campaign in late October. Rice’s medical records also include a serious hip injury and multiple concussions.
It’s possible that the Seahawks will redirect the savings on Rice’s contract towards re-signing fellow wide receiver Golden Tate, who has expressed willingness to take a hometown discount to stay in Seattle. Defensive end Michael Bennett is also hitting free agency this offseason and the club may also look to hammer out extensions with cornerback Richard Sherman and safety Earl Thomas.