How cutting Zach Miller & going TE in R1 could help Seattle

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  • Food for thought...

    LINK: http://seahawksdraftblog.com/proposal-s ... one-target

    You can make a pretty strong case to argue Zach Miller has been a terrific addition to this team — even without the big stats to back it up.

    There is a ‘but’, however…

    Miller is far from an elite player. He isn’t a big time difference maker.

    His contract suggests he should be.

    The most expensive player on Seattle’s 2013 roster was — you guessed it — Zach Miller.

    And it wasn’t even close.

    His $11m salary was $1.5m more expensive than #2 on the list — Russell Oking ($9.5m). Marshawn Lynch at #3 accounted for $2.5m LESS than Miller.

    Rob Gronkowski’s cap hit in 2013 was $2.75m having recently signed an 8-year $55m mega-deal in New England. That steadily increase as you’d expect. Yet during the entire course of that contract, he doesn’t top Miller’s 2013 salary until 2019 ($11.25m cap hit) — the final year of the deal.

    Even with Miller’s contract dropping to a $7m cap hit in 2014, he’ll still earn $1.6m more than Gronkowski next season.

    As much as I appreciate the job he’s done in Seattle, his attitude and contribution to this young team — he’s simply earning far too much for a tight end who hasn’t topped 400 yards in three seasons.

    In comparison, a tight end drafted in the #28-34 region could be expected to earn around $1.25m as a rookie and $1.5m as a second year player.

    That’s a huge difference.

    You can save $5m by cutting Miller ($7m cap hit, $2m in dead money). So you’re talking about a $4m overall saving by replacing him with one of the tight ends in this rookie class.

    That’s money that could go towards keeping Golden Tate and/or Michael Bennett.

    It really comes down to determining just how valuable you believe the 28-year-old is to the offense, compared to how effective a rookie can be as an immediate starter.
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  • Miller seems like a guy that would be willing to re-structure somehow. I agree that while he is a fantastic blocker and a very good all-around player, he is not worth that salary. Still, I hope they can keep him around by restructuring. One way or another, I think he is back with the team next year.
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  • Interesting article. However painting with 2013 contract numbers when talking about 2014 options is a disservice IMO. Referring to Miller's 7th highest highest cap number in 2014 is sufficient for your point. I think it useful to look to add another tight end regardless of the status of existing contracts. They will be looking to add. Tight end cuts along with others can wait until August.
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  • I think he's got to restructure.
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  • Even though I've been wanting OL early, I think I'd be fairly happy with this if a good WR fell to the end of the 2nd. Which WR would you be thinking of?
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  • IF ASJ is still on the board at 32, I will be livid if we pass on him. Love Money Miller, but he would become much more expendable with the addition of ASJ...then we have McCoy and Willson as well. We'd be fat for years at the position all combined making a fraction of Zach's money.

    But the same people that see Miller as "not earning his money" are likely the same people that will say "ASJ had a down year". Both spent more time this year blocking than putting up numbers. Rather unfair to downgrade either for being team players. Additionally, I find it comical that some mocks have downgraded ASJ based on a reduction of catches, yards, TDs. If anything, ASJ should be upgraded...he still has that insane ability to make the circus catch at his ridiculous size, but now, like Miller, he can block, too.
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  • Davis Hsu thinks we'll let Kellen davis and McCoy go but keep Miller apparently (unless I read this incorrectly):

    http://www.fieldgulls.com/2014/1/6/5281 ... y-cap-2014
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  • If we had TE depth that could do what he does you may have a point, but Miller can run, block and catch, the holes that have been so rotational in our line from injuries and learning curve has limited the ability to use Miller to the maximum of his abilities, Look at the Atlanta game last year as a real measureing stick of what he can bring.
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  • Isn't McCoy a UFA after the season? He is part of that glob of 20+ players who have their contract ending in March.
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  • drdiags wrote:Isn't McCoy a UFA after the season? He is part of that glob of 20+ players who have their contract ending in March.


    Yes, he is.
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  • I definitely wish for a big target pass catcher in round 1.

    I'm really starting to think ASJ is the best pick for Seahawks if he by some miracle falls to us late in the first round. He is orthodox enough to block on the line, but nimble enough to stretch the field and even catch some screens. I really like Zach Miller, but his paycheck is going to be prohibitive. If we let Zach and Sidney go, we might have a prayer in re-signing Bennett and Tate, and be in a better position to sign ET and Sherman.

    I would keep Willson as the Joker tight end.

    Tate, Harvin, ASJ, and Willson would be a nightmare to cover....

    I don't see us having a shot at getting a high-end WR in round 1 (Lee, Evans, Watkins)...maybe Coleman, but ASJ is a much more polished player and would take less time to bring up to speed it seems.

    The latest draft at Draft Breakdowns has us taking Landry at #32...on this mock, ASJ would be available to us. The prior mocks on that site also have ASJ available to us.
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  • chris98251 wrote:If we had TE depth that could do what he does you may have a point, but Miller can run, block and catch, the holes that have been so rotational in our line from injuries and learning curve has limited the ability to use Miller to the maximum of his abilities, Look at the Atlanta game last year as a real measureing stick of what he can bring.


    I like the idea in the op and I politely disagree with some of your statement. Miller is painful to watch run, id go as far as to say that out side of o line man and dts he's usually by far the slowest guy on the field. I cringe everytime he has the ball and has to take more than 2 steps to get to the end zone, cause you just know he's never going to make it.

    I think we take advantage of his ability fairly well, he does an awesome job at what we ask. That's just my 2 cents and honest assessment, with that being said Miller isn't even my top 5 guys id "like" to see gone, I really like him but if te value at our draft spot is there plus a side bennie of savings I can see how this could make sense.
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  • One thing to note on the possibility of restructuring his contract...

    If Miller was willing to reduce his salary by 50% (a significant amount) -- he'd still be costing $2.5m more than a rookie drafted in the back end of round one. If he did take a 50% hit, the potential saving would still be $1.5m less than if you cut him outright and spent a high pick on his replacement.

    The Seahawks might not actually have any interest in restructuring his deal. The main thinking behind this piece is that there's a massive saving to be made by cutting Miller, so that you can pass on that saving to help re-sign Michael Bennet, or Golden Tate -- or both. All the while, there's an opportunity to replace Miller with a player who might actually be up to the task (there are three rookie TE's who deserve an early grade).

    It's addition by subtraction. If you can keep Bennett in the defense, help keep Tate on the offense and the only downside is a rookie starts instead of Miller -- isn't that worth considering?
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  • Cutting Sidney Rice and Clem would save us $20mm, enough to sign Golden Tate, Doug Baldwin, Michael Bennett.
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  • SDHawk wrote:Cutting Sidney Rice and Clem would save us $20mm, enough to sign Golden Tate, Doug Baldwin, Michael Bennett.


    Cutting Rice and Clemson actually only saves $14m -- they have a cap hit of $9m (give or take a few 100K) and both have $2m in dead money to blitz. So you're saving $7m on each player.

    The Seahawks need to save more than $14m.

    Cutting Miller as well would give you $19m to invest in Bennett and Tate. They might command $7m per each. The rest of the money has to go into the pot of cash being used to re-sign Thomas and Sherman -- two deals that will happen this off-season even if it means losing Bennett or Tate.
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  • What's Big Red's cap hit? I see him expendable.
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  • Hawk Strap wrote:What's Big Red's cap hit? I see him expendable.


    Red is like 6.2 against the cap, think Mebane is 6.5.

    edit: I was way off...

    Mebane is set to cost $5.7M in cap with small dead money (only $400k) if cut. The net savings for cutting Mebane would be $5.3M in cap. Red Bryant is scheduled to cost $8.5M in cap, with $3M in dead money - for a net savings of $5.5M if cut. The net savings for Mebane and Red are similar - but with the way Mebane is playing Nose Tackle, I think you have to move on from Red Bryant.


    http://www.fieldgulls.com/seahawks-anal ... y-cap-2014
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  • I say let Miller go and really it will be for cap reasons/to resign the fa's..
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  • theENGLISHseahawk wrote:
    SDHawk wrote:Cutting Sidney Rice and Clem would save us $20mm, enough to sign Golden Tate, Doug Baldwin, Michael Bennett.


    Cutting Rice and Clemson actually only saves $14m -- they have a cap hit of $9m (give or take a few 100K) and both have $2m in dead money to blitz. So you're saving $7m on each player.

    The Seahawks need to save more than $14m.

    Cutting Miller as well would give you $19m to invest in Bennett and Tate. They might command $7m per each. The rest of the money has to go into the pot of cash being used to re-sign Thomas and Sherman -- two deals that will happen this off-season even if it means losing Bennett or Tate.


    If Tate got a Cruz type contract (8yr $43m...which I think would be high) the cap number in year one was only $2.5m. I don't know that the Hawks would necessarily want to structure things like that, but there's ways to get both Tate and Bennett signed for relatively little hit on the cap year one. Cruz's cap jumps to $7.5m, then $8m, then $10m, so that's not ideal for Seattle knowing Wilson and Sherman deals are on the way, but it's an option.

    What I think happens is that they cut Rice ($7.3m in cap savings) Clemons ($7.5m) Miller ($5m). Breno is not coming back at his current 4.75m cap, and Marshawns cap number drops by $1.5m next year. That's north of $25m.

    Assuming Thomas, Sherman, and Wilson aren't looking to completely smash previous salary records, I think the Hawks are in pretty good cap shape.
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  • Could be the thing to do with Miller. I'm all in favor of only spending the big money on the true irreplaceable star players, which also means being against paying a superstar contract to Tate. The only thing I worry about is moving guys before having a proven replacement - that can be troublesome - both in losing them or overpaying them.
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  • Shane Falco wrote:Could be the thing to do with Miller. I'm all in favor of only spending the big money on the true irreplaceable star players, which also means being against paying a superstar contract to Tate. The only thing I worry about is moving guys before having a proven replacement - that can be troublesome - both in losing them or overpaying them.


    Tate said something interesting when interviewed on Brock & Danny. Mentioned how patient the organization was with him. He basically owned up to producing squat in his first year and seemed genuinely thankful that they didn't give up on him after a less than amazing year two.

    http://mynorthwest.com/category/pod_pla ... 932&p=3&n=

    Makes me wonder (which I usually never do) if he'd be more open to a little less money in order to benefit the team.
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  • drrew wrote:If Tate got a Cruz type contract (8yr $43m...which I think would be high) the cap number in year one was only $2.5m. I don't know that the Hawks would necessarily want to structure things like that, but there's ways to get both Tate and Bennett signed for relatively little hit on the cap year one. Cruz's cap jumps to $7.5m, then $8m, then $10m, so that's not ideal for Seattle knowing Wilson and Sherman deals are on the way, but it's an option.

    What I think happens is that they cut Rice ($7.3m in cap savings) Clemons ($7.5m) Miller ($5m). Breno is not coming back at his current 4.75m cap, and Marshawns cap number drops by $1.5m next year. That's north of $25m.

    Assuming Thomas, Sherman, and Wilson aren't looking to completely smash previous salary records, I think the Hawks are in pretty good cap shape.


    This.

    Breno, McQ, Rice, Clem are all gone and I'm not convinced that we'll bring back WT3.

    Avril's contract comes off the books after next season so that creates more wiggle room.

    Not saying that yours isn't a good idea, just don't think it's necessary.

    If I could have it my way, I would keep Zach and pull the trigger on Lyerla in the 7th Rd or try him out as a UDFA.
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  • SDHawk wrote:
    drrew wrote:If Tate got a Cruz type contract (8yr $43m...which I think would be high) the cap number in year one was only $2.5m. I don't know that the Hawks would necessarily want to structure things like that, but there's ways to get both Tate and Bennett signed for relatively little hit on the cap year one. Cruz's cap jumps to $7.5m, then $8m, then $10m, so that's not ideal for Seattle knowing Wilson and Sherman deals are on the way, but it's an option.

    What I think happens is that they cut Rice ($7.3m in cap savings) Clemons ($7.5m) Miller ($5m). Breno is not coming back at his current 4.75m cap, and Marshawns cap number drops by $1.5m next year. That's north of $25m.

    Assuming Thomas, Sherman, and Wilson aren't looking to completely smash previous salary records, I think the Hawks are in pretty good cap shape.


    This.

    Breno, McQ, Rice, Clem are all gone and I'm not convinced that we'll bring back WT3.

    Avril's contract comes off the books after next season so that creates more wiggle room.

    Not saying that yours isn't a good idea, just don't think it's necessary.

    If I could have it my way, I would keep Zach and pull the trigger on Lyerla in the 7th Rd or try him out as a UDFA.

    ^ This makes more sense. ASJ for Miller is a lateral move, especially when one considers that our TE productivity is deflated due to Russell's limitations when throwing down the middle of the field. NFL network had a stat that Wilson only throws the ball to the middle of the field 15% of the time vs the league average of 24%. They suggested that his height forced him to focus out toward the sidelines since he had trouble seeing over the defensive line. This could explain why Miller isn't targeted more. ASJ is a slightly taller target than Miller but his impact could still be diminished if Russ fails to improve his mid-field reads.

    I do think that Miller's contract should be reworked if possible, but cutting him and drafting another TE is too reminiscent of cutting Julian Peterson and drafting Aaron Curry. Not sure it would provide an immediate upgrade in 2014, apart from some cap savings. I'd rather see more dramatic upgrades at OG / OT / big WR...
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  • HawkWow wrote:I do think that Miller's contract should be reworked if possible, but cutting him and drafting another TE is too reminiscent of cutting Julian Peterson and drafting Aaron Curry. Not sure it would provide an immediate upgrade in 2014, apart from some cap savings. I'd rather see more dramatic upgrades at OG / OT / big WR...


    I don't think it's fair to compare Miller to ASJ to Peterson vs. Curry.

    The HAwks didn't save a lot of money going from Peterson to Curry, they would save a lot of money going from Miller to ASJ.

    I personally don't think ASJ will be a great pro, I don't think his drive or fire matches his talent but he could easily prove me wrong.
    Last edited by WestcoastSteve on Sat Jan 11, 2014 4:53 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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  • E.C. Laloosh wrote:
    Shane Falco wrote:Could be the thing to do with Miller. I'm all in favor of only spending the big money on the true irreplaceable star players, which also means being against paying a superstar contract to Tate. The only thing I worry about is moving guys before having a proven replacement - that can be troublesome - both in losing them or overpaying them.


    Tate said something interesting when interviewed on Brock & Danny. Mentioned how patient the organization was with him. He basically owned up to producing squat in his first year and seemed genuinely thankful that they didn't give up on him after a less than amazing year two.

    http://mynorthwest.com/category/pod_pla ... 932&p=3&n=

    Makes me wonder (which I usually never do) if he'd be more open to a little less money in order to benefit the team.



    No way, Tate knows he had a big year when he needed to and he will get paid. Veterans take pay cuts all the time, Tate is coming off his rookie deal, he's going to fight for every cent. Loyalty from him would be in the form of perhaps allowing us to match whoever offers him the most money.
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  • To say that players will simply leave for more money is not taking into account all the factors. They are competitive, so it's not like its in Golden Tate's makeup to go to catch passes from Ponder for a year to sit out the playoffs year after year simply for more money when he has a good relationship with a championship team. The whole "home town discount" might be overhyped, and if someone like the patriots come at him with pocketbook blazing, sure, he will probably leave. But most good teams are smart with their money and I don't see him getting much more than the seahawks would offer them. They aren't dumb they know what he's worth, they simply don't have any room to exceed that if he gets a mega contract.
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  • WestcoastSteve wrote:
    HawkWow wrote:I do think that Miller's contract should be reworked if possible, but cutting him and drafting another TE is too reminiscent of cutting Julian Peterson and drafting Aaron Curry. Not sure it would provide an immediate upgrade in 2014, apart from some cap savings. I'd rather see more dramatic upgrades at OG / OT / big WR...


    I don't think it's fair to compare Miller to ASJ to Peterson vs. Curry.

    The HAwks didn't save a lot of money going from Peterson to Curry, they would save a lot of money going from Miller to ASJ.

    I personally don't think ASJ will be a great pro, I don't think his drive or fire matches his talent but he could easily prove me wrong.


    Aside from disagreeing with your thought "ASJ won't be a good pro"...I have no idea how you managed to get my name on that quote. I never said any of that. You must be attempting to quote someone that quoted me...unsure, but those are not my words, nor my opinion.

    Earlier someone said drafting ASJ, while letting Miller go (if he won't restructure) would only a be a "lateral move". I do hope you're right. If we can get us a 22 yr old version of Miller at a fraction of the cost...what's not to love? Some of you sadly underestimate what Miller is capable of , what he brings to the table and that it was the team, not him, responsible for his declining numbers...just as Sark was responsible for ASJ's drop.
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  • bbsplitter wrote:To say that players will simply leave for more money is not taking into account all the factors. They are competitive, so it's not like its in Golden Tate's makeup to go to catch passes from Ponder for a year to sit out the playoffs year after year simply for more money when he has a good relationship with a championship team.


    That's spiking your argument. He could take Snyder's money and catch passes from RG3. Or Jerruh's money and take passes from Romo. And I'm pretty sure in either case, he'd be a 1000 yd/season receiver in either location. He could be a 75-90 catch guy in either offense. And those two teams are going to have a windfall of UFA cash available to them this offseason.

    The simple fact is, if you are a receiver for the Seahawks, your potential NFL productivity will be halved the moment you sign a contract here. Receivers don't get the plays in Seattle like they do everywhere else. And their ability to earn on the open market is abnormally retarded by the nature of our offense. If Tate resigns here, he may as well kiss a productive 3rd contract goodbye. Because he will be sealing a 400-700 yard/season average for his career. Receivers that hit their late 20s with those numbers end up playing for the league minimums and trying to be the 4th receivers on a roster.

    Resigning here could cost him upwards of 3 million per season in his 6th through 12th seasons (if he plays that long). It's a HUGE financial hit for him to stay. And you're trivializing that if you think that his only option is to play for an NFL purgatory type losing franchise. There are a lot of bubble teams with robust passing attacks who would love to have Tate. And they'd be well positioned to make him a star.

    Were I his agent, I'd make him keenly aware of what he'd be giving up by staying here. From a purely logical standpoint from Tate's perspective -- it should require that Seattle pays a vast premium to keep him. Because this offense is going to cost him dollars down the road. And he's never going to get the recognition for his talents working in this offense either. Tate is already giving up glory and long term earning potential by staying.
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  • I think Miller is likely gone, but I'd much rather have Jace Amaro than ASJ. Though I don't know if Amaro will drop to 30-32
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  • Not an Amaro fan. Definitely not a fan of replacing Miller with Amaro. His blocking, whether in space or in line, is pretty atrocious.
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  • Attyla the Hawk wrote:
    bbsplitter wrote:To say that players will simply leave for more money is not taking into account all the factors. They are competitive, so it's not like its in Golden Tate's makeup to go to catch passes from Ponder for a year to sit out the playoffs year after year simply for more money when he has a good relationship with a championship team.


    That's spiking your argument. He could take Snyder's money and catch passes from RG3. Or Jerruh's money and take passes from Romo. And I'm pretty sure in either case, he'd be a 1000 yd/season receiver in either location. He could be a 75-90 catch guy in either offense. And those two teams are going to have a windfall of UFA cash available to them this offseason.

    The simple fact is, if you are a receiver for the Seahawks, your potential NFL productivity will be halved the moment you sign a contract here. Receivers don't get the plays in Seattle like they do everywhere else. And their ability to earn on the open market is abnormally retarded by the nature of our offense. If Tate resigns here, he may as well kiss a productive 3rd contract goodbye. Because he will be sealing a 400-700 yard/season average for his career. Receivers that hit their late 20s with those numbers end up playing for the league minimums and trying to be the 4th receivers on a roster.

    Resigning here could cost him upwards of 3 million per season in his 6th through 12th seasons (if he plays that long). It's a HUGE financial hit for him to stay. And you're trivializing that if you think that his only option is to play for an NFL purgatory type losing franchise. There are a lot of bubble teams with robust passing attacks who would love to have Tate. And they'd be well positioned to make him a star.

    Were I his agent, I'd make him keenly aware of what he'd be giving up by staying here. From a purely logical standpoint from Tate's perspective -- it should require that Seattle pays a vast premium to keep him. Because this offense is going to cost him dollars down the road. And he's never going to get the recognition for his talents working in this offense either. Tate is already giving up glory and long term earning potential by staying.


    ........."and if someone like the patriots come at him with pocketbook blazing, sure, he will probably leave."
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  • Attyla the Hawk wrote:
    bbsplitter wrote:To say that players will simply leave for more money is not taking into account all the factors. They are competitive, so it's not like its in Golden Tate's makeup to go to catch passes from Ponder for a year to sit out the playoffs year after year simply for more money when he has a good relationship with a championship team.


    That's spiking your argument. He could take Snyder's money and catch passes from RG3. Or Jerruh's money and take passes from Romo. And I'm pretty sure in either case, he'd be a 1000 yd/season receiver in either location. He could be a 75-90 catch guy in either offense. And those two teams are going to have a windfall of UFA cash available to them this offseason.

    The simple fact is, if you are a receiver for the Seahawks, your potential NFL productivity will be halved the moment you sign a contract here. Receivers don't get the plays in Seattle like they do everywhere else. And their ability to earn on the open market is abnormally retarded by the nature of our offense. If Tate resigns here, he may as well kiss a productive 3rd contract goodbye. Because he will be sealing a 400-700 yard/season average for his career. Receivers that hit their late 20s with those numbers end up playing for the league minimums and trying to be the 4th receivers on a roster.

    Resigning here could cost him upwards of 3 million per season in his 6th through 12th seasons (if he plays that long). It's a HUGE financial hit for him to stay. And you're trivializing that if you think that his only option is to play for an NFL purgatory type losing franchise. There are a lot of bubble teams with robust passing attacks who would love to have Tate. And they'd be well positioned to make him a star.

    Were I his agent, I'd make him keenly aware of what he'd be giving up by staying here. From a purely logical standpoint from Tate's perspective -- it should require that Seattle pays a vast premium to keep him. Because this offense is going to cost him dollars down the road. And he's never going to get the recognition for his talents working in this offense either. Tate is already giving up glory and long term earning potential by staying.


    Speaking of spiking an argument. The bases for your argument is heavily flawed. Going from a pass first oriented offense to a run first oriented offense does not cut a receivers productivity in half ... that's false.

    A switch in run/pass orientation does produce a shift in receiver targets verses blocking/decoying assignments. A difference of maybe 20% is believable. Receivers in Seattle are valued as much for their blocking and decoy abilities as they are for their catch and run abilities. Seattle signs receivers to fit Carroll's style .... just as other teams sign receivers to fit their style.

    Tate gives up nothing by staying in Carroll's offense. Tate was drafted for this offense because he was built for this offense. IMO a pass happy offense could not take full advantage of all that Tate brings to the field of play.
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    Jville
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