Making a trade will be hard, very. How hard? Well depending on who you ask, and understanding the fact that only John Schneider and Matt Thomas know what the real number is, the Seahawks only have somewhere around 1.5 to 3 million in cap space available. That is basically zero dollars when you factor in 10 remaining games along with the potential and probability of injuries and the need to fill out a roster with additional players, the promoting of a veteran or two from the practice squad such as Snacks and Kendricks.
The other issue in making a trade is lack of trade equity in the form of draft picks. Here is what the Seahawks have for the 2021 draft, not including the addition of possible compensatory picks- 2nd, 4th, 5th and 7th round. Four total picks. In addition, they traded away their 2022 first round selection as well as part of the Jamal Adams trade from the Jets.
So if we assume they want to make a move to add a player, specifically a defensive lineman or pass rusher, there are three names we hear most often. We will start in Cincinnati with Carlos Dunlap who has a cap hit of 10.9 million this year and 13.5 in 2021. That 10.9 number would not be the full cap hit for the Seahawks, but it would still be a substantial hit and require multiple other moves to make it work. Everson Griffen has a hit of 5.8 million in 2020 and is a free agent next year but was just traded to Detroit. Finally, Aldon Smith is just 1.3 this year and is a free agent next season.
So Smith, in terms of salary, is the most enticing. As far as their play is concerned this season here is what Steve Palazzolo from Pro Football Focus told us on Tuesday’s radio show:
Dunlap-2019 one of his best seasons… at his best one of best edge run defenders but not playing well this year. Grading in the 50’s after a career year. Over 50 pressures last season. Good not great pass rusher.
Smith-he has been good.. out playing Dunlap… 26 total pressures in 184 rush attempts. Had an 8 pressure game against the Seahawks for example. His ability to turn back the clock has been impressive.
Obviously there are other players out there, but to make a deal, the Seahawks will more than likely also need to give up a roster player(s) as well. Who? Jacob Hollister’s contract would help the Hawks cap situation but how much of a market is there for the Seahawks’ third tight end?
The bottom line is an upgrade on the defensive line is needed, and it can be done via a trade, but it will not be an easy task.
-- Ian Furness