Seahawks Rumors

Poll: Where Will Jadeveon Clowney Sign?

It’s April and defensive end Jadeveon Clowney is still without an NFL team. The former No. 1 overall pick isn’t coming off of a banner year, but he plays a premium position and has 32 career sacks to his credit. So, what gives? 

Of course, his price tag is his biggest blocker. Clowney came into the offseason seeking a deal worth $20MM per year. Recently, he backed down from that position, though the incumbent Seahawks are believed to be offering between $13-$15MM per annum, which is still probably less than he’s willing to accept.

A reunion still seems possible, but Clowney’s camp is working to find a better deal in the interim. Late last week, the Browns entered the sweepstakes and some league officials believe that they have the strongest interest of any suitor. The Browns have tons of cap room – about $43MM – and they might be willing to use some of it to swap Olivier Vernon for Clowney. Of course, that might be easier said than done, since the Browns would still have to find a team willing to take on the rest of Vernon’s contract, which is set to pay him $15.25MM.

The Jets could use Clowney’s edge rushing ability, but they’ve been taking a conservative approach to free agency after whiffing on their preferred targets in March. The Titans have also been linked to him, thanks to Clowney’s relationship with head coach Mike Vrabel from their Houston days, but they’re less inclined to spend on the pass rush after committing $9MM to outside linebacker Vic Beasley.

Other teams have been connected to Clowney, like the Giants, Colts, and Dolphins, though their pass rush needs have already been addressed. The Eagles remain an interesting landing spot for him from a football perspective, and they have breathing room to work with for right now, but their 2021 situation could complicate things. In theory, Philly could still land Clowney if he is willing to accept a one-year deal. The Ravens – with less than $11MM in cap space for the current year – seem less likely to sign him. For the sake of casting a wide net, we’ll include all of those teams in our poll.

Where do you think Clowney will sign? Cast your vote in the poll below (link for app users) and back up your pick in the comments.

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Browns Interested In Jadeveon Clowney

The Browns have entered the enduring Jadeveon Clowney sweepstakes. Not only is Cleveland now involved in the Clowney pursuit, Jeremy Fowler of ESPN.com reports some around the league believe the Browns have come closer to a Clowney deal than other suitors thus far (Twitter link).

The Seahawks have been the team most closely connected to Clowney this offseason. While Seattle has tried to make a viable offer to keep the three-time Pro Bowler, Fowler adds that the team’s offer has not satisfied the Clowney camp to this point.

A Clowney-Browns scenario would be interesting given the team’s defensive end depth. The Browns already employ Myles Garrett and Olivier Vernon. A Clowney deal would point to Vernon being on the outs.

In late February, Vernon was linked to being a candidate for a pay cut or release. In the final year of his Giants-constructed contract, the veteran defensive end is set to earn $15.25MM. The Browns are not expected to pay him this much, but the former Dolphins and Giants pass rusher remains on the roster. The Browns have shopped Vernon, Nate Ulrich of the Akron Beacon Journal adds, but any deal would likely be contingent on Cleveland picking up some of his salary.

This week, both the Jets and Titans re-emerged as Clowney suitors. The former No. 1 overall pick also dropped his price off the $20MM-per-year mark. However, the Seahawks’ proposal likely lands between $13-$15MM per year.

Cleveland’s $43MM-plus in cap space leads the NFL by a wide margin. Seattle currently holds less than $15MM in cap room.

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Latest On Jadeveon Clowney

Jadeveon Clowney is surprisingly still on the market this late in the process, and he’s one of the most interesting situations left to monitor. A couple of days ago we heard that Clowney had lowered his asking price from around $20MM a year to $17-18MM annually after not receiving the offers he was hoping for.

Now we’ve got a new batch of notes on his status, courtesy of John Clayton of ESPN 710 Seattle. Clayton writes that the Seahawks are taking a wait and see approach with Clowney and are being patient. He thinks Seattle might be willing to only pay between $13-15MM for him, which would be a steep discount. New York has been talked about as an interested team, but Clayton writes to “scratch the thoughts on the Jets.”

Clayton writes the Jets’ discussions consisted of only one phone call to his agent and that they haven’t made him an offer, so it sounds like their interest has possibly been a bit overstated. Clayton acknowledges that the Titans are interested, but thinks it might be hard for Tennessee to fit him into their cap after they already gave fellow outside linebacker Vic Beasley a $9MM contract.

Of course Titans head coach Mike Vrabel coached Clowney during their time in Houston, so maybe he’ll be extra motivated to make it work. Clayton opines that had Clowney lowered his demands in the first couple of days of free agency, he would’ve had a deal. The Seahawks by all accounts want to bring him back, and it sounds like they might end up getting a great deal if Clowney’s leverage continues to decrease. We’ve also heard the next best free agent rusher Everson Griffen is interested in joining the Seahawks, so that could be their backup plan if Clowney heads elsewhere.

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NFL Contract Details: Lions, Seahawks, Vikings, Jets, Broncos

Let’s take a look at the details of a few recently-signed NFL deals:

  • Tony McRae, CB (Lions): One year, $1MM. $200K guaranteed. $100K signing bonus (Twitter link via Justin Rogers of the Detroit News).
  • Phillip Dorsett, WR (Seahawks): One year, $1.048MM. $138K guaranteed. Qualifies as veteran minimum salary benefit deal (Twitter link via Brady Henderson of ESPN.com).
  • Ameer Abdullah, RB (Vikings): One year, $910K. $45K signing bonus. $45K roster bonus. Qualifiers as veteran minimum salary benefit deal (Twitter link via Ben Goessling of the Star Tribune).
  • Anthony Zettel, DE (Vikings): One year, $910K. $45K signing bonus. $45K roster bonus. Qualifiers as veteran minimum salary benefit deal (Twitter link via Chris Tomasson of the Pioneer Press).
  • Joseph Jones, LB (Broncos): One year, $825K. No guaranteed money (Twitter link via Mike Klis of 9News).
  • Bennett Jackson, DB (Jets): One year, $725K. $100K guaranteed. $50K signing bonus (Twitter link via Rich Cimini of ESPN.com).

Seahawks Waive S Tedric Thompson

Apr. 2: Contrary to the earlier report suggesting that Thompson had fully recovered from his torn labrum, Brady Henderson of ESPN.com says that the 25-year-old was waived with a failed-physical designation (Twitter link). Thompson has cleared waivers and is now free to sign with any team, but given his uncertain health status and the restrictive policies currently governing free agent physicals, he may not find a new home for a while.

Mar. 31: Tedric Thompson‘s time with the Seahawks is coming to an end. Seattle will waive the safety, according to Josina Anderson of ESPN.com (Twitter link).

We heard a couple of weeks ago that Thompson had been given permission to seek a trade, but obviously they weren’t able to find any takers. Thompson had been set to earn $2.3MM in 2020, and the Seahawks will save $2.1MM by cutting him. Thompson only appeared in six games last season because of a torn labrum, and a source tells Anderson that Thompson is now fully healthy. Before going down he had started all six games and had two interceptions, but received poor marks from Pro Football Focus.

Seattle drafted Thompson in the fourth-round out of Colorado back in 2017 and after playing sparingly as a rookie, he started ten games in 2018. The Seahawks’ defense was a bit of a disappointment last season, and Thompson was made especially expendable by their trade for safety Quandre Diggs last fall.

Thompson is still only 25, and with his recent starting experience he should be scooped up pretty quickly by another team. Seattle will roll with Diggs and Bradley McDougald as their starting safeties, and are hoping their recent trade for Quinton Dunbar will help bolster the secondary.

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Seahawks To Sign DE Benson Mayowa

Benson Mayowa‘s first NFL work came in a two-game sample with the Super Bowl champion 2013 Seahawks. The seven-year veteran will have an opportunity to come back to Seattle.

Mayowa reached an agreement to rejoin the Seahawks on Wednesday, according to his agency (Twitter link). This deal includes $3MM-plus fully guaranteed, per Tom Pelissero of NFL.com, who adds it maxes out at over $4MM (Twitter link).

Mayowa stands to provide depth for Seattle on the edge. While this does not appear to impact the Seahawks’ pursuit of Jadeveon Clowney, Pelissero adds the team did not wish to keep waiting to add pieces up front (Twitter link). The Seahawks remain in on Clowney, but teams like the Titans and Jets have surfaced as potential suitors as of Wednesday.

Since 2014, Mayowa has played for the Raiders, Cowboys and Cardinals. In his second Raiders stint, a one-year stay in 2019, he recorded a career-high seven sacks despite playing just 270 snaps. That was three more than any Seahawk recorded last season. Mayowa, 28, has 20 career sacks and two seasons with at least six — last year with the Raiders and with the 2016 Cowboys.

This marks the second reunion for the Seahawks at this position. Last month, they agreed to terms with Bruce Irvin. Neither Irvin (8.5 sacks last season) nor Mayowa profile as a high-end edge rusher at this point, so the team may still be pursuing Clowney.

The Seahawks finished with just 28 sacks — 31st in the league — last season, so these additions stand to at least aid the group. Mayowa originally caught on with the Seahawks as a UDFA out of Idaho.

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Jadeveon Clowney Lowers Asking Price

As Week 3 of free agency begins, Jadeveon Clowney remains available. And in an acknowledgement his market has not shaped up the way he anticipated, the former No. 1 overall pick is lowering his asking price.

Clowney no longer seeks $20MM per year; he would accept a deal closer to $17-$18MM AAV, Diana Russini of ESPN.com tweets.

The three-time Pro Bowler has dealt with knee problems at multiple junctures of his career, including microfracture surgery in 2014, and underwent core-muscle surgery after dealing with a midsection issue for much of his Seahawks season. Teams being unable to host Clowney on visits or have their medical staffs examine him in this unusual offseason may well be playing into this delay.

The 27-year-old edge defender has been most closely connected to the Seahawks, and Russini adds they remain interested. But 11 days after a report indicated the sides were close on a deal, he remains in free agency. The Jets have engaged in discussions with Clowney, per GM Joe Douglas. The Titans did as well, and Russini notes they are still interested in adding Clowney. Tennessee previously added ex-Atlanta defensive end Vic Beasley, and he would be in line to start opposite Harold Landry. Seattle features a bigger need on the edge and is still waiting on Clowney, to the point it may be interfering in a potential deal with Everson Griffen.

While the Colts, Cowboys and Giants have been connected to Clowney as well, nothing has emerged on those fronts in many days. Despite a need for a defensive end opposite DeMarcus Lawrence, the Cowboys are not expected to pursue Clowney. This makes sense given Lawrence’s $20MM-per-year salary. The Giants have not made much headway regarding their need at edge rusher, signing Kyler Fackrell. Clowney was believed to be interested in joining the Giants, but the team is not chasing a high-priced pass rusher.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

Everson Griffen Interested In Seahawks Deal

Although the Seahawks’ top priority at defensive end still appears to be working out a deal to retain Jadeveon Clowney, they may have a backup plan.

Everson Griffen is interested in joining the Seahawks, Chris Tomasson of the St. Paul Pioneer Press tweets. The Seahawks’ level of interest appears to be contingent on how Clowney proceeds, Tomasson adds.

Clowney remains unsigned, but after his market did not produce what was expected, the former No. 1 overall pick has been most closely connected to the Seahawks in his first free agency foray. Meanwhile, the Vikings will not re-sign Griffen. They were previously linked to be set to work out a new deal with the free agent edge defender.

The Seahawks re-signed defensive tackle Jarran Reed and brought back Bruce Irvin. Even though Seattle also drafted L.J. Collier in the 2019 first round, the team still has a need at defensive end. Griffen, 32, rebounded last season to post eight sacks and venture to his fourth Pro Bowl.

Griffen is eyeing a deal in the $8-$10MM/year range. Clowney is aiming for one closer to $20MM. The elder defender would certainly be a more cost-effective alternative and one with a more reliable history at sacking quarterbacks. A 10-year veteran, Griffen has 74.5 career sacks. Since Clowney came into the league in 2014, Griffen has 55 sacks. Clowney has 32 career sacks. While the latter is nearly six years younger and obviously has a longer career left, that is a notable disparity between the edge-rushing talents.

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Seahawks Release Ed Dickson

Seattle continues to clear cap space bit by bit. The Seahawks have released veteran tight end Ed Dickson, a source told Ian Rapoport of NFL Network (Twitter link).

The move comes shortly after Seattle cut safety Tedric Thompson to save a little bit of cash as well. Rapoport notes that Dickson had been set to earn $3MM in 2020, and that the Seahawks will save “most of it” by cutting him. Dickson had a very disappointing run in Seattle after signing a three-year, $10.7MM deal there in 2018. He missed the first six games of that season on the NFI list, and then missed all of last year with a knee injury.

Oddly, he started the year on injured reserve, was activated in November, but then nearly immediately placed back on IR without playing a game after he failed to recover from his knee injury. The circumstances of the knee issue were always a mystery, and it’s unclear if he’s now fully healthy.

A third-round pick of the Ravens back in 2010, Dickson has always been more of a blocker than a pass-catcher. He has had some reasonably productive years though, catching 30 passes for 437 yards with the Panthers in 2017, his last healthy campaign. Set to turn 33 in July, he’ll likely struggle for much guaranteed money assuming he wants to keep playing.

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Seahawks To Sign WR Phillip Dorsett

March 31: Dorsett’s deal will qualify for the veteran salary benefit, as Field Yates of ESPN.com tweets. That means he’ll count for just $877K against Seattle’s cap, with a $137,500 signing bonus, even though he’ll collect a larger sum.

March 24: Phillip Dorsett will have a new address soon. The free agent wide receiver has committed to signing with the Seahawks, Josina Anderson of ESPN.com tweets. It’s a one-year deal.

As many as five teams were looking into the former Patriots contributor, and Dorsett’s decision will add a weapon to the Seahawks’ receiving corps. The Jets, 49ers, Raiders and Chargers also showed interest in the former first-round pick.

Seattle will team Dorsett with Tyler Lockett and D.K. Metcalf, giving Russell Wilson some additional help. Dorsett spent the past three seasons with the Patriots, being sent to New England for Jacoby Brissett just before the 2017 season. While Dorsett never broke through as a higher-end weapon for Tom Brady, he played a supporting-cast role and posted 29 receptions for 397 yards and a career-high five touchdowns last season. He added two TDs during the Patriots’ 2018 playoff run.

Dorsett, 27, averaged north of 16 yards per catch in 2016 and ’17, enjoying his best season with Andrew Luck in ’16. Dorsett posted a career-high 528 receiving yards that year but saw then-new GM Chris Ballard ship him out just before the 2017 regular season. This Seahawks agreement represents another chance for the ex-Miami Hurricanes speedster.

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