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Report: Tempo of contract talks picking up ahead of Russell Wilson’s April 15 deadline

NFL: Pro Bowl Steve Mitchell-USA TODAY Sports

Less than two weeks ago, reports emerged that Seattle Seahawks quarterback Russell Wilson had set a deadline for negotiating a contract extension as he goes into the final year of his current contract. With Monday and the reported drop dead date quickly approaching, we’ve now seen early reports that progress on the negotiations are picking up.

Former Seahawks quarterback Brock Huard was the first to break the news about the “tempo being picked up in talks between” Wilson and the Seahawks ahead of the April 15th date.

Shortly after, Jake Heaps, former Seahawks quarterback and current director of operations for the Russell Wilson Passing Academy provided more substantial details, saying that Wilson’s agent and general manager “John Schneider have been meeting for several hours the past couple days.”

Wilson is set to earn a base salary of $17 million in 2019 as he goes into the final year of his four-year deal worth $87.6 million. The expected franchise tag amounts for 2020 of $30.34 million and $36.4 million in 2021 could provide the starting point for negotiations for the two sides.

A deal for Wilson would allow the team to save next year’s franchise tag as they try and fit potential extensions for Frank Clark, Bobby Wagner and Jarran Reed into their cap. All three have contracts expiring at the end of next season.

If both sides are unable to reach a deal, there are questions about the critical nature of Monday’s deadline. According to reports, Wilson has no plans to hold out if he doesn’t get a new contract and there wouldn’t be anything keeping the two sides from negotiating beyond the suggested deadline.

Wilson should be in position to become the highest paid quarterback in NFL history with a new contract, and last month on The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon, Wilson was asked about that possibility. “There’s a great potential for that,” said Wilson. “We’ll see what happens.”

We may be finding out exactly what happens in the next couple of days.