Defensive end Jadeveon Clowney will be one of the most sought-after free agents this year, if the Seahawks let him get away. Seattle traded for the former Texans star in August, and the team wants him back. “He’s a terrific football player and he had a big impact on us,” head coach Pete Carroll said. “We would love to have him back.”
Carroll also revealed that Clowney will require core-muscle surgery, which is expected to take place in the next week or so. The core injury limited Clowney down the stretch of the 2019 season, though he was able to suit up for the Seahawks’ regular season finale and their two playoff contests. His injury history, though not insignificant, will likely not stop him from landing a massive deal, whether that’s from Seattle or someone else.
For his part, Clowney wants to play for a contender. The former No. 1 overall pick told reporters, including Brady Henderson of ESPN.com, “I just want to win. I ain’t looking to get on no sorry team for no money. That ain’t going to fly. I ain’t gonna put my body through all of that just to lose no 16 games, go home with my check.”
Clowney posted just three sacks in 2019, though that belies the impact he had on opposing passers and in the running game. One of the most complete defenders in football, the three-time Pro Bowler cannot be slapped with the franchise or transition tag pursuant to the terms of the Texans-Seahawks trade.
If Clowney ends up signing elsewhere, the Seahawks would likely be in line to recoup a third-round compensatory draft choice in 2021. But Seattle is presently projected to have over $60MM of cap space in 2020, so a re-up could be in the cards.
While plenty of teams would love to have Clowney, the clubs that will be prioritizing an edge rusher and also profile as contenders include the Ravens, Titans, and (possibly) Falcons.
Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.