The free agent/trade spitballing exercise

Discuss your thoughts about anything draft related. Mocks, College and Pro. Knock yourselves out!!! RATING: PG-13
  • Number one. Establish Flynn's value.
    Let's not quibble too much over this, Flynn will be traded. Flynn wants gone, he has value, Tarvaris Jackson netted a pick fer gosh sakes. To be third string in Buffalo. Flynn is worth more than him. So, let's say he is worth a 5th (and I think that is conservative for a QB). If you don't agree, just humor me anyway. This is only an exercise!

    First priority. Shore up DT. This is a must.
    Sign Desmond Bryant for 4 years, 26 million, 14 guaranteed. I know some want Henry Melton, I don't, and the truth is Bryant has produced more sacks per start than Melton anyway, and he did it without defenses worrying about a linemate like Peppers. 6'6" 311, and he can collapse the pocket. 20 hurries in 350 pass rushes and 8 starts. 4 sacks. (by comparison, Jones had 10 hurries and 3 sacks). If this move is untenable, another big body is available, Terrance Knighton from the Jaguars. Knighton would be an immediate upgrade over Branch(according to PFF)

    Defensive end is an even bigger concern. The Clemons injury exposed a lack of depth, with Seahawk fans wondering who the hell Chukwurah was. They still wonder who he was. I want to look at two free agents, Connor Barwin and Anthony Spencer. Barwin is a name you may recognize, he is a former tight end who then played DE at Cincy and then played rush LB at Houston. He was miscast in that role, despite his 12 sacks he rates as just plain awful as a 3-4 backer. A great athlete, he not quite the physical fit Spencer is at LEO. Barwin had a 40 inch vertical at the combine and ran a 4.66 40, with a 6.87 3 cone. That is eye popping athleticism, at a position where Pete demands athleticism. Spencer is three years older. We are just spitballing here, and neither guy has to be signed. I would prefer we sign one of these two over a linebacker, but this is just part of looking under every rock here. Playing LEO is no easy task, and until/if Clemons returns, his job may need to be done by two players. The other one we will get in the first round. I know, Irvin, but until he proves he can stop the run I am going to assume he can't.

    Part of my off season plan is to also pay close attention to the tender San Diego slaps on Danario Alexander. If it is a 3rd round or higher, I grab that guy. He had 7 touchdowns in 10 games for San Diego last year, and looked good doing it. I would trade a third rounder for him right now. 6'3" 217, and I like the way he plays.

    Explore signing Brad Jones, linebacker. He has the measurables, 4.54 in the 40, he has the right size at 6'3" 242. The price has to be right, and Schneider has to be convinced. Phillip Wheeler is another linebacker worthy of consideration. Either one would have to be the right price, as the latter part of this draft has some prospects. If one of those two is signed, it needs to be a team friendly deal, something like 3 years with some guaranteed money in that first year. Coverage skills are nice, but not mandatory in a free agent LB this year. All we are looking to do is create some draft freedom if things don't fall our way. Depth and competition!

    There is another part to my exercise, and this is a part I am sure is being explored by John Schneider right now. There are several teams making 3-4 and 4-3 switches this year, and some of them are sure to have some scheme misfits. Those scheme misfits have to be explored before any free agents are signed. Philly, Buffalo, and the Saints are all potential trade partners. We have done business with the Bills before, and Pete has had Chip Kelly to the VMAC for a visit before. The Saints are less of a known relationship right now. Players like Greg Romeus, Martez Wilson, Mark Anderson are all players who might not really fit the schematic direction those teams are headed. Romeus in particular fascinates me, he was a 7th round pick after missing lots of time with an ACL. Think of him as the 2012 draft's Tank Carradine, except he is healthy right now. Same goes for defensive tackles on those three teams, if we see that one of them can be an adequate replacement for Alan Branch.

    I clearly realize we cannot sign all these free agents, so please don't point that out. This is just spitballing. The last thing I want is to overpay and have too long of contracts with any of these players.

    If I have my druthers, we will come away from free agency more fluid and agile on draft day. We will have lost a 3rd if we signed Alexander, but gained a 5th for Flynn. We will have filled at least two, if not three of our bigger needs before the draft.

    What say you?
    Last edited by Scottemojo on Fri Mar 01, 2013 2:19 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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  • Desmond Bryant would be a GREAT pick up.
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  • Good plan, I'd love to fill our top needs with affordable vets who can come in and play right away.
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  • I'm surprised that the Hawks never brought in Danario. Wasn't he not even with a team for a while? The plan sounds good. Bryant would be huge for us.
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  • I am a fan of Alexander myself. I think he might just have broke out last year. Should be interesting to see what kind of tag he gets. Might have to poison pill or offer a trade over the RFA tender to get him, San Diego probably knows what they have there.

    I am with you on the Barwin/Spencer ideas, but I am almost completely certain that Seattle will not sign a DE in FA. I think it's a lock that they'll go for the draft there. DT I'm less certain. JS's wording is interesting, he said he'd "keep tabs" on Jason Jones in FA, something to that effect. Might be hinting at going a different direction in FA.

    Also, New Orleans is run by GM Mickey Loomis. Loomis grew up in Eugene, Oregon and was with the Seahawks organization for 15 years before heading to New Orleans. Loomis is one of Cortez Kennedy's best friends and was present at Tez's hall of fame enshrinement to support Tez. Don't know if he's got a special relationship with PC/JS or not, but he's got very strong ties to the Seahawks.
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  • I'd definitely be on board with Bryant and Barwin. Both still young and very physical.

    As for Alexander, I usually don't like to think of trading away high draft choices (a third is like an extra 1st for JS), BUT, at 24, and with that size...I think his physical attributes and his recent production make him a better/safer choice than, say, going with a (rookie) WR in round 3.

    Not too high on the LBers, I like the depth we have, with Smith and Toomer, etc...as well as the ability to grab a player like Brown early, or even later with Gooden on draft day.
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  • William Hayes is a guy that nobody is really talking about, 6'3" 272 lined up inside and outside last year for the Rams. He was drafted by the Fisher in Tenn and signed with the Rams last offseason. He's 27 years old and finished the season with 7 sacks, 5.5 of them in the last 6 games including one against the Hawks.
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  • Totally agree on Hayes. He showed with opportunity in the 2nd half of the season that he can be a very productive player. He and Bryant are the 2 younger players I would love to see signed making the draft much more flexible. What are the thoughts on Jason Jones and Alan Branch being resigned?
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  • Nice job Scott -- and I have to agree with a lot of the names you put out there. Spencer is a guy that intrigues me as well at the LEO position ... and it looks like given the Cowboys cap space issues that they're not going to be able to franchise him. Landing a guy who 11.0 Sacks and 7 Tackles for Loss last season ain't a bad thing. I'm glad to see that you're also high on Phillip Wheeler and Desmond Bryant as well -- those are a couple of guys I've had my eye on as well.

    And to getnasty and penihawk, I can tell you that William Hayes is a guy that I've been on for some time now. I can certainly see him being a nice fit in run situations. At the end of January, I did an extensive posting on some names that you could see out there perhaps linked to the Seahawks -- ones that I saw as potential bargains that could fill some needs. Here are a few of the names I threw out there that I felt could make some sense...

    OLB – Antwan Barnes (6’1” 251 Pounds) is one guy who might possibly fly under the radar that I’d be very interested in if I’m Seattle. The value of an Antwan Barnes will probably be a bit lower than it should be, as he had just 3 Sacks and 9 Tackles in 11 games and ended the season on Injured Reserve with a hamstring issue. In 2011 though, Barnes was among the NFL’s leaders in Sacks (11.0). Coming out of Florida International of the Sun Belt Conference, Barnes was incredibly productive, with 15.5 Sacks and 38 Tackles for Loss in just 2 years of college. Like Bruce Irvin, he has been very much a situational pass rusher – so for a team like the Hawks who seemingly couldn’t buy a sack, he could be a potentially attractive commodity. He turns 29 in October, so if Pete gives him the typical Rah-Rah, he just might dance to that tune for pennies on the dollar.

    OLB – Phillip Wheeler (6’2” 240 Pounds) is another Raider free agent to keep an eye on given their Cap Status. He led the Raiders last year in tackles (109) and had 6 passes defensed last year playing Strong Side Linebacker (though he can play any of the 3 positions). At 28 years of age, he may not command the kind of dollars in free agency that some of the top guys might get. Coming out of Georgia Tech, he was considered to be one of the top blitzing linebackers in the country. In 3 years of college, he recorded 19.5 Sacks and 35 Tackles for Loss. He hasn’t done that in the pros yet though, as prior to this year he had recorded a mere 2 Sacks in 4 years with the Colts. I’m the Seahawks, and he at all lingers out there in Free Agency, he’s one that I pick up the phone and call his agent on.

    DE – William Hayes (6’3” 272 Pounds) is a name that I threw out there a few days ago who really intrigues me. Hayes was originally drafted in the 4th Round by the Titans back in 2008 ... was signed by the Rams this past offseason to a 1 year deal ... and responded by having a career year with the Rams (7.0 Sacks and 7 Tackles for Loss). He is once again a UFA. For a DE, he has good size (6'3" 272 Pounds) and extremely impressive speed for a big man (he's been clocked at 4.59 in the 40). He's 27 years old (will turn 28 in May) and one reason that he's never really broken out prior to this year is that he's played 2nd fiddle to some fairly talented DE's (like Jason Babin and Jevon Kearse) -- i.e. he's had a lot of competition for playing time. Ben Stockwell of Pro Football Focus ran an article back in June in which he called Hayes a "secret superstar", so I'm not the only one high on William Hayes. Hayes’s forte has always been against the run and PFF ranked him the 9th Best DE in the league in terms of stopping it. Obviously he added to his resume last year when given more playing time. Hayes only made $900,000 last season, so if John Schneider is truly looking for bargain basement options (which he undoubtedly is) ... I submit that he is an excellent candidate (to put in the rotation) that probably won't break the bank.

    DT – Desmond Bryant (6’6” 311 Pounds) (who turns 28 in December) is another stealth bomber who could go undetected by many. After Richard Seymour went down with a season ending injury, Bryant took over as the starter for the last 8 games of the Raiders season. He had 0 sacks through Week 13 … but finished the season with 4.0 Sacks and 6 Tackles for Loss. Although he went undrafted in the 2009 Draft, this highly intelligent Harvard graduate appears to know what he’s doing, as he’s developing in to a solid pass rusher and run defender. He made $1.927 Million last season, and stands to improve upon that as the Raiders view his re-signing as a priority this offseason. As stated above though, that could be easier said than done, as the Raiders are currently $4.5 Million over the Salary Cap. Given the perpetual disarray of the organization, a team like the Seahawks could be a more attractive alternative for him.

    DT -- Vance Walker (6’2” 304 Pounds) is another young Defensive Tackle (he turns 26 in April) who could be deserving of an extended look by the Seahawks. In a part time role with the Falcons (he played on 51.9% of their defensive snaps this year), Walker notched 3.0 Sacks and 2 Tackles for Loss. Those numbers don’t exactly going to set the world on fire, but Walker was considered an unsung hero and a fairly integral part of the Falcons defense this year. In fact, head coach Mike Smith went so far as to call Walker the Falcons “most productive defensive tackle in terms of pass rush statistically.” Walker’s job this season was to do the dirty work of taking up space by occupying more than one blocker – a job that he did very well this year. At Georgia Tech, Walker was considered an extremely good run stuffer and he demonstrated an ability to consistently get in to opposing backfields to disrupt and put pressure on the quarterback. He made $1.26 Million in the last year of his rookie deal and will certainly draw some interest from other clubs. Though the Falcons want him back, they will have other priorities in free agency like re-signing Strong Safety William Moore and Left Tackle Sam Baker. Walker could be just the kind of young defensive tackle that the Hawks might want to swoop in and carry back to their nest … and it realistically shouldn’t cost a wing and a talon to do it.

    CB -- Bradley Fletcher (6’1” 200 Pounds) Fletcher, who turned 26 in June, is a free agent who could really fly low under the radar and be a real coup for someone. He had 8 Passes Defensed last season with the Rams … and though he was regarded by many as perhaps the best corner on the team next to Janoris Jenkins … he received less playing time as last season wore on. NFL Trade Rumors.com has him listed at #81 on their Top 100 FA List … and most certainly he should be – he’s got talent. Fletcher is a guy who going in to the 2009 NFL Draft was considered to be a real sleeper – someone who was considered to be one of the fastest risers shooting up draft boards. In fact, he was considered by some to have been the best corner at the East-West Shrine game that year. The former Iowa star is a very physical cornerback and a very hard worker (in fact, he earned the team Hustle Award his last 2 years at Iowa). He has excellent speed for a corner (4.46), leaping ability (his 38.5 inch vertical was 3rd best among corner prospects that year), quickness, and coverage skills. Fletcher regularly makes plays on the ball when he’s in there and has the stuff to be a shutdown corner. So if he’s all that and a bag of chips, what gives with the reduced playing time and why would the Rams want to let him go? Well, because in 2011 he appeared in just 4 games after tearing up his ACL (for the 2nd time in 3 seasons). There were rumors that the reason the Rams dropped him down to 4th on the depth chart was because they were looking to trade him – because he was an impending free agent and they wanted to get value for him. Now that he is, he’s a name that I’m certainly checking in on if I’m Seattle, as he could be a true basement bargain.

    Source:
    http://www.seahawks.net/posting.php?mode=edit&f=4&p=861709
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  • kearly wrote:I am a fan of Alexander myself. I think he might just have broke out last year. Should be interesting to see what kind of tag he gets. Might have to poison pill or offer a trade over the RFA tender to get him, San Diego probably knows what they have there.

    I am with you on the Barwin/Spencer ideas, but I am almost completely certain that Seattle will not sign a DE in FA. I think it's a lock that they'll go for the draft there. DT I'm less certain. JS's wording is interesting, he said he'd "keep tabs" on Jason Jones in FA, something to that effect. Might be hinting at going a different direction in FA.

    Also, New Orleans is run by GM Mickey Loomis. Loomis grew up in Eugene, Oregon and was with the Seahawks organization for 15 years before heading to New Orleans. Loomis is one of Cortez Kennedy's best friends and was present at Tez's hall of fame enshrinement to support Tez. Don't know if he's got a special relationship with PC/JS or not, but he's got very strong ties to the Seahawks.

    With the recent talk of Cullen Jenkins being of interest to Seattle, I think you might be right. DT free agency, young speed in the draft.
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  • I've always gotten the sense that Seattle was going to look to nab a DT in Free Agency because to me, there are several intriguing options. Did you ever get a chance to look in to Vance Walker, Scott? I think he's a name to keep an eye on because of how the Falcons coaching staff views him. I'm curious to get your take on him as well as on Antwan Barnes.
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  • Hawkscanner wrote:I've always gotten the sense that Seattle was going to look to nab a DT in Free Agency because to me, there are several intriguing options. Did you ever get a chance to look in to Vance Walker, Scott? I think he's a name to keep an eye on because of how the Falcons coaching staff views him. I'm curious to get your take on him as well as on Antwan Barnes.

    I will check them out.
    I am convinced they will go DT in free agency too, it is their MO. Branch, re-sign Mebane, McDonald, Jones and the lack of playing time for rookie DTs all suggest to me they like experience at that position. Of course, when I said weeks ago I suspected they didn't want a DT in the first, it was not a warmly received idea.
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  • Scottemojo wrote:
    Hawkscanner wrote:I've always gotten the sense that Seattle was going to look to nab a DT in Free Agency because to me, there are several intriguing options. Did you ever get a chance to look in to Vance Walker, Scott? I think he's a name to keep an eye on because of how the Falcons coaching staff views him. I'm curious to get your take on him as well as on Antwan Barnes.

    I will check them out.
    I am convinced they will go DT in free agency too, it is their MO. Branch, re-sign Mebane, McDonald, Jones and the lack of playing time for rookie DTs all suggest to me they like experience at that position. Of course, when I said weeks ago I suspected they didn't want a DT in the first, it was not a warmly received idea.


    I think I'm safe in assuming you were around to see the Knox years. If so, you (and others) will remember well how Cortez Kennedy did that first year. He didn't do much in year 1 -- in fact, he only started a couple of games. Now, some of that might have been due to lag time related to rookie contract holdout stuff (I can't remember honestly), but I don't know if that extra practice time in training camp would have made much difference given this particular guy's talent level. The point being - it takes time sometimes to develop DT's.
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