They say all good things must come to an end. It’s certainly true in sports. That time has come for the Seattle Seahawks. Earlier this week they traded franchise quarterback Russell Wilson to the Denver Broncos and released 10-year defensive captain Bobby Wagner. Both men were drafted by Seattle in 2012 and helped the team earn back-to-back Super Bowl berths, winning in 2013. Wide receiver DK Metcalf took to Instagram to share a heartfelt message about his former teammates.
“Man, this one hurt. These two men have taught me so much not only about football, but about life. From Russ calling me after I got drafted to throwing me my first touchdown to teaching me how to swim and just taking me under your wing bro I thank you. From Bobby teaching me how to be a businessman and how to cherish relationships and how to make people feel like the best version of themselves I thank you. Love y’all.”
The Seahawks finished 7-10 this past season. Their worst record in the Russell Wilson era. Given the age of their roster and the division they play in, perhaps a change was needed.
In exchange for the 33-year-old quarterback, the Seahawks received quarterback Drew Lock, tight end Noah Fant, defensive lineman Shelby Harris, two first-round picks (2022 — No. 9 overall — and 2023), two second-round picks (2022 — No. 40 overall — and 2023) and a 2022 fifth-round selection.
Nothing really stands out there besides the ninth pick in the upcoming draft. But the Seahawks still need a quarterback, and this draft doesn’t appear to be quarterback-rich, according to experts.
Since their appearance in the 2014 Super Bowl Wilson and the Seahawks failed to make a deep playoff run. The furthest they’ve advanced is the divisional round. Wilson and Wagner were the only players left on the roster from the 2014 team.
Over the past couple years rumors were swirling that Wilson was unhappy with the direction the team was going in. He wanted them to commit to the passing game more and expand the playbook. But the Seahawks never did, nor did they invest in protecting him with a good offensive line.
Now it’s full on rebuild mode and you have to wonder if 70-year-old head coach Pete Carroll is here for the long haul. He doesn’t exactly have the track record that suggests he’s committed to the painstaking process of a rebuild.
Releasing Wagner will save the team $16.6 million in 2022 cap, and gives them the opportunity to be somewhat aggressive in free agency. The Wilson trade helps the cap as well, but not as much you might think.
The Seahawks are going to have to get lucky in free agency, draft extremely well this season to stock up on talent, and develop every single player they can. No easy feat in a league that is rapidly changing.
One championship and two Super Bowl appearances in 10 years may not seem like a lot. But every year with Wilson at the helm, the Seahawks felt like they were in the conversation and could contend if things broke right. They are a long way away from feeling that again.