Shaquill Griffin has been the big winner-loser from the Seattle Seahawks this offseason. The third-round cornerback signed a generous contract with the Jacksonville Jaguars, and reports are that it apparently blew the Seahawks’ offer out of the water.
According to Sports Illustrated, he was shocked by the details, and his brother Shaquem may have yacked a little bit.
Griffin has $29 million guaranteed and will make $13.85 million this year in Jacksonville. Whatever Seattle was offering, the gap was noticeable.
How they’ve replaced him, however, does not grant confidence. To be perfectly honest if you’re going to be deficient at cornerback or the entire defensive line, it better be cornerback. The Seahawks themselves may be one of the best evidences of this over the last couple years, and the dedication to pass rush has been at the forefront.
Meanwhile, the three presumed competitors to Griffin’s absence come with a boatload of savings for Seattle.
- D.J. Reed: $920,000
- Tre Flowers: $2.2 million
- Ahkello Witherspoon: $4 million
- Damarious Randall signed last week and they made a big deal about him playing corner not safety, but his numbers are not out yet.
At this point the two starters and primary backup will cost $7.1 mil, just over half of Griffin’s new deal.
In very stark contrast to the Jarran Reed departure, this doesn’t feel like a push in talent. Across the line, what Reed wanted paid for Ford’s extension, Kerry Hyder coming in, and then some. It might even be an improvement when all is said and done, at significant savings.
For cornerback, Griffin was the top guy and they have not replaced that yet. This is more along the lines of the reclaimed-project-bargain shopping; the failed Offensive Line strategy of old.
This doesn’t mean the team made the wrong decision. They simply haven’t been able to make the right one in response the way they could at defensive line.
A $40 million contract is a bear to give a guy with six interceptions in four years, and who played 16-14-12 games over the last three. This was not something that Schneider should have done this year.
The strange part of this is that Quinton Dunbar, once rumored to be quite engaged with Seattle, went to the Detroit Lions for only $1.1 million this year.
That would seem to indicate that Schneider is either banking on someone far bigger (don’t say Richard Sherman?), or that he truly is committed to Witherspoon at this point.
Either way, it’s always been about finding the money to bring back Chris Carson and Carlos Dunlap, alongside the offensive help Russell Wilson wants. Unfortunate that the cornerback market hasn’t been as friendly as the D-line market to this point.