Rumbling has been out there for a while that the Seattle Seahawks might leave after a veteran ran back like Devonta Freeman or Carlos Hyde to sustain depth in a place seriously injured in 2019 and where there is still uncertainty about exactly when Rashaad Penny will return.
But in the most concrete signs something will be coming soon, a report appears Wednesday which states Freeman and Hyde have been in recent contract talks with the Seahawks.
A report from Adam Caplan of SiriusXM NFL Radio stated that the Seahawks “had made an offer” to Freeman. That was followed later that day by another report from Michael Silver of the NFL Network that stated the Seahawks had not only spoken to Freeman but had also had a conversation with Hyde.
Silver reports Seattle made a one-year offer to Freeman with a base value of $ 3 million which could be worth as much as $ 4 million with incentives, but Freeman also has offers from the New York Jets and Philadelphia Eagles (although the Jets may be out of the picture now that they have Frank Gore ). Caplan reports Freeman wants more than Seattle has to offer and for now the Seahawks are not moving.
That might indicate that no one is close to Freeman.
But both reports show the Seahawks are at least trying to make a significant step to add a running veteran back, something the team has hinted for a while could happen.
Seattle has also been in contact with agents for Marshawn Lynch, and it has been proven that for a while the Seahawks will likely bring other veterans at some point to improve the running back corps which currently has only six players – Penny, Chris Carson, Travis Homer, DeeJay Dallas, Patrick Carr and Anthony Jones.
Of those, only three appear in the NFL game – Carson, Penny and Homer – and Penny is likely to start training camp on a list that cannot physically do as he continues to recover from the knee injury suffered on December 8 against the Rams in Los Angeles.
Seahawks general manager John Schneider said in an interview at KJR-AM (950) in April that “it will be very difficult” for Penny to get ready for this season given the typical recovery schedule for his injury.
Even before that, coach Pete Carroll said in the February NFL that Seattle would likely add several veterans to fill positions as Penny and Carson recovered saying “we have to make sure we have enough depth.”
That was clearly a big problem for Seattle at the end of 2019, when the Seahawks saw basically their entire back line fell through injury in December.
The possible absence of Penny at the start of the season leaves only Carson and Homer as defenders with NFL experience, and Carson is also undergoing rehabilitation from a hip injury suffered in the December 22 match against Arizona. Carson is expected to be ready to start training camp but is likely to see little, if any, action in preseason.
Homer played significantly when last season’s rookie ended with 114 yards on 18 carries, and Dallas was taken in the fourth round of the draft in April, each projecting to have a place on 53 Seattle players.
But keeping a fourth run at 53 men seems to be possible and Seattle is known to hope to bring other veterans to compete.
Only the other two withdrew from the list, Carr and Jones, each a novice free agent.
The 28-year-old Freeman was released in a hat-cutting action by the Falcons on March 16 after Atlanta’s decision to sign Todd Gurley after experiencing what was his worst statistical season in the NFL in 2019, when he earned 656 yards in 184 carry with an average of 3.6 yard-per-carry. It was the lowest of six seasons in the NFL, all of which have been with Atlanta.
Hyde, meanwhile, became an unlimited free agent in March when he turned down a new contract offer from Houston.
The 29-year-old Hyde rushed to a career as high as 1,040 meters last season for Texas in playing all 16 matches. He spent 2018 with Cleveland and Jacksonville after starting his career with 49ers in 2014 as a second round pick from Ohio State and then played four seasons for San Francisco.
Hyde has also sometimes been used significantly as a recipient, including capturing a 59-meter high-pass career for 350 meters with 49ers in 2017. Hyde generated $ 2.8 million on a one-year contract with Houston in 2019.
OFFICIAL SMITH BACK – Seahawks also made it official that they re-signed the Geno Smith quarterback.
Seattle ruled out Justin Johnson to make room for Smith on the 90-person list.
Smith will compete with free agent rookie novice Anthony Gordon from Washington State for backup work behind Russell Wilson, but the Seahawks will likely hope that they can use the training team (which this year increased to 12) as a way to keep all three on the list in some the way to the 2020 season.
Smith, the second round Jets pick in 2013, was a Seattle reserve last year after coming in, and then defeated Paxton Lynch in the preseason to get No. 2
But Smith did not play in the game for the Seahawks, because Wilson took every opportunity for the second season in a row.