The offseason has not been short of news for the Seattle Seahawks, who aren’t rebuilding but are certainly retooling and overhauling the roster on both sides of the ball. Gone are longtime leaders in Russell Wilson and Bobby Wagner, and a new era of Seahawks football with the next generation of leaders appears to have arrived.
On the defensive side of the ball, regardless of how much some fans may dislike it, the highest paid member of the team is All Pro strong safety Jamal Adams. At just 26 and under contract for the next four seasons, Adams likely isn’t going anywhere anytime soon, and on offense it’s 24 year old beast of a wide receiver DK Metcalf who appears set to carry the torch. However, unlike Adams, Metcalf is only signed through the 2022 season, though the team has expressed its intent to sign him to an extension.
With that in mind, the news Wednesday morning regarding another top wide receiver signing yet another big-money contract extension continues to potentially increase the cost of keeping Metcalf with the Hawks. This time around it was Stefon Diggs of the Buffalo Bills signing a big contract, with a base value that works out to a $24M per year salary.
Another mega deal: Bills reached agreement with WR Stefon Diggs on a 4-year, $104 million extension that includes $70 million guaranteed, sources tell ESPN. Deal ties Diggs to Buffalo for six more years, at $124.1M, with the intent from both sides to have him retire in Buffalo. pic.twitter.com/ptSQ3eE54D— Adam Schefter (@AdamSchefter) April 6, 2022
The Diggs extension, of course, comes in the wake of the massive contracts given to Tyreek Hill and Davante Adams as part of their trades to the Miami Dolphins and Las Vegas Raiders. However, while Diggs (28), Adams (29) and Hill (28) are all likely at an age at which they have already reached their prime and it’s downhill from here, Metcalf is just 24 and won’t turn 25 until the final month of the 2022 season.
Specifically, while there is certainly some fluff at the end of the Hill and Adams contracts, they are still noteworthy deals. Adams’ deal is effectively a three-year, $69M deal that will see him turn 30 late in the first year of the contract. Hill’s deal is likely to wind up in the range of four years for $96M, with the final two years played after Hill turns 30. Similarly Diggs was already under contract with the Bills past his 30th birthday, the new extension runs until he is 34.
In contract, Metcalf could sign a four year extension and at the end of it he would still be just 29. That means that it is not just possible, but potentially even probable, that Metcalf’s peak still lies in the future. That is scary for defensive backs across the league to think about given the following.
D.K. Metcalf's first 3 NFL seasons:— NFL on CBS (@NFLonCBS) April 5, 2022
▪️3,170 Receiving Yards
▪️29 Receiving TD
The only other players to hit these numbers in their first 3 seasons over the last 40 years:
▫️Odell Beckham pic.twitter.com/thgMURfq9I
Any list for receiver production that includes Randy Moss and Jerry Rice is obviously elite, and Metcalf’s production through his first three seasons warrants inclusion in these groups. So, the question isn’t will Metcalf sign a big contract, it’s a matter of when he will sign a big contract and figuring out exactly how big the contract will be.
With training camp set to open in a little over three and a half months, the Seahawks have plenty of time before their normal extension negotiating window opens, but with the receiver market as hot as it has been so far this offseason, it might be prudent to see if Metcalf is willing to deal right now.