Wednesday the Seattle Seahawks had a closed practice, so there were no highlight videos of DK Metcalf or Tyler Lockett catching passes from Russell Wilson. However, after practice Head Coach Pete Carroll met with the media to give updates on things in advance of the preseason opener Thursday against the Denver Broncos.
Of note, Carroll told reporters that tight end Ed Dickson has already undergone knee surgery on whatever the issue was that was bothering him.
TE Ed Dickson has knee surgery, Pete Carroll says. “We are hoping it’s a 4 to 5 week deal.” #Seahawks— Gregg Bell (@gbellseattle) August 7, 2019
As Gregg Bell of the New Tribune reports, the team hopes that Dickson will be back in four to five weeks. Thus, with the regular season opener against the Cincinnati Bengals set for four and a half weeks from today, there is at least some chance that Dickson could miss the first game of the year.
Now, what is interesting about Dickson’s situation is the potential cap ramifications depending on how the team handles things. Dickson, with a $4,416,666 cap number for the 2019 season, had been pegged as a potential cap casualty by many, however, the injury and the knee surgery seem likely to prevent the Hawks from having a chance to evaluate him this preseason. Obviously, he’s enough of a veteran that the team has a pretty good idea of what he can and cannot do, but at 32 years of age the possibility certainly exists that his playing days could end any time.
In any case, this creates an interesting scenario. With roster cuts to 53 set for just three and a half weeks from today on Saturday, August 31st, the team likely won’t have any more opportunities to see Dickson in action. Thus, the decision becomes whether to keep him at his current cap hit, or to release him. Now, because of the injury, the team cannot outright release him, so they would have to put him on injured reserve until such a time as he is healthy, and then they could cut him. In that situation, he would get paid his base salary of $194,117 per week that he spends on IR, so that would be somewhat costly for the team.
The alternative, however, is to not put him on injured reserve and to keep him on the 53 man roster for Week 1. If they decide to go that route, his entire 2019 base salary of $3.3M becomes fully guaranteed as a vested veteran on a Week 1 roster, even if he is injured and unavailable to the team for the opener against the Bengals.
In any case, this will certainly be a situation worth monitoring in the coming weeks, and watching how the other tight ends on the roster perform during the preseason just became even more important. So, in addition to any specific match ups one was planning to watch on Thursday, how Jacob Hollister, Nick Vannett and Will Dissly perform may have just become more important. Not just when it comes time to make roster cuts at the end of the month, but for a few million in cap space as well.