Exactly two weeks from today, NFL free agency officially gets underway. The Seattle Seahawks have a boatload of unrestricted free agents set to test the market soon, and the cap space situation is not ideal. This is not to mention all of the Russell Wilson drama that may very well factor into the moves the team makes in the months to come.
To get you geared up for the beginning of the free agent frenzy, here is a breakdown of players whose contracts are up, as well as their free agent designations.
Unrestricted free agents
Offense: Chris Carson, Carlos Hyde, Jacob Hollister, Luke Willson, Cedric Ogbuehi, Ethan Pocic, Nick Bellore, Geno Smith, Philip Dorsett, David Moore
Defense: K.J. Wright, Bruce Irvin, Benson Mayowa, Shaquill Griffin, Quinton Dunbar, Neiko Thorpe, Damarious Randall, Damontre Moore, Jonathan Bullard, Lano Hill
Restricted free agents
Jordan Simmons, Poona Ford, Shaquem Griffin
Exclusive Rights Free Agents
Ryan Neal, Bryan Mone, Linden Stephens, Kyle Fuller, Patrick Carr, Jayson Stanley
Mike Iupati, Greg Olsen
I’d say UFAs are self-explanatory, but here’s the skinny on RFAs and ERFAs via NFL.com:
Restricted Free Agents:
A player with three accrued seasons and an expired contract. RFAs are free to negotiate and sign with any team, but their original team can offer them one of various qualifying offers (“tenders”) that come with the right of first refusal and/or draft-pick compensation. If the tender is withdrawn by a team, the RFA becomes an unrestricted free agent.
Exclusive Rights Free Agents:
Any player with fewer than three accrued seasons and an expired contract. If his original team offers him a one-year contract at the league minimum (based on his credited seasons), the player cannot negotiate with other teams.
On the RFA front, the Seahawks can offer Simmons, Ford, and Shaquem to a first-round tender, second-round tender, or an original round tender. Griffin is the only one of the three who was drafted, whereas an original round tender for Simmons and Ford would mean no compensation in return for Seattle. If Ford gets a second-round tender, for example, the Seahawks would receive a second-round draft pick should they choose not to match another team’s offer sheet. All tenders are one-year deals.
We do not know the monetary value of RFA tenders as of yet, but the deadline to extend these offers is March 17th at 1 PM PT. Seattle can also opt not to tender any of these players and as a result they would become unrestricted free agents.
As you can see reading the ERFA definition, it should not be hard to retain either Bryan Mone or Ryan Neal, the two most notable names on that list.
All eyes of course will be on the futures of UFAs such as Wright, Shaquill Griffin, and Chris Carson. Keep this article handy for when March 17th arrives.