The NFL Salary Cap for the 2013 league year is expected to be set at or around $121M, which is only a very small change from this season's $120M. NFL.com's Ian Rapoport is now reporting some of the tentative Franchise Tag and Transition Tag numbers for next season as well, so teams can start planning for which, if any, players they may place those tags on. Those numbers are separated out into positional groups below, and they will be finalized in March:
CB: Franchise: $10.668 / Transition: $8.939
DE: Franchise: $10.984 / Transition: $8.994
DT: Franchise: $8.306 / Transition: $6.919
K/P: Franchise: $2.926 / Transition: $2.654
LB: Franchise: $9.455 / Transition: $8.216
OL: Franchise: $9.660 / Transition: $8.560
QB: Franchise: $14.642 / Transition: $12.845
RB: Franchise: $8.079 / Transition: $6.851
S: Franchise: $6.798 / Transition: $5.899
TE: Franchise: $5.962 / Transition: $5.105
WR: Franchise: $10.357 / Transition: $8.716
The numbers won't likely affect the Seahawks a whole lot. A cursory glance at the Seahawks roster not only shows that the team is very young, it shows that this front office does not have to worry much about losing key free agents this summer outside of Jason Jones and Alan Branch.
h/t to Davis Hsu for the table
As you can see, the Seahawks' unrestricted free agents for 2013 are:
CB Marcus Trufant (age 32)
OT Frank Omiyale (age 30)
LB Leroy Hill (age 30)
DT Alan Branch (age 28)
K Steven Hauschka (age 27)
DT Jason Jones (age 26)(on injured reserve)
TE Cameron Morrah (age 25)(on injured reserve)
And that's it. It would make zero sense for Seattle to franchise tag Trufant at $10.6M, Omiyale at $9.6M, Hill at $9.5M or Morrah at $5.9M.
I suppose there's a small chance that Seattle would entertain the thought of franchise tagging Hauschka at $2.9M, but that seems like a lot of cheese for a kicker with Hauschka's resume. Still, the front office seems to like Hauschka, and his dependable field goal kicking may be worth the price tag.
Ultimately, if Seattle plans on going the Franchise Tag route, Branch and Jones are the only real options at the $8.3M number - though, when you consider that you're almost doubling one of their salaries for a one-year rental (Jones makes ~$4.5M, Branch $4.25M), it seems unlikely.