The Seahawks really could use a couple of new tackles, but how about a couple of old ones?
In a neat little coincidence Thursday, former Seahawks tackles Russell Okung and Breno Giacomini both learned they will not return to their teams — the Broncos told Okung they will not pick up his option and the Jets released Giacomini.
The natural question: Will the Seahawks be interested in a reunion with either?
We previously noted the Hawks are not likely to pay much to add a lineman — per their usual MO and Pete Carroll’s statement after the season. Giacomini almost surely would be the cheaper of the two — and a possible replacement for restricted free agent Garry Gilliam.
Giacomini, 32, was limited to five games by injuries last year, and the Jets didn’t want to pay him $4.5 million in 2017. He started 25 games for the Seahawks in 2012 and 2013 before signing with the Jets in 2014. He started every game in 2014 and 2015 before his injury-ravaged 2016 season.
It seems a no-brainer that the Seahawks will check into him — if healthy, he probably would be a cheap signing (and, as a street free agent, would not count against Seattle in the comp-pick formula). If the Hawks think he can remain healthy and still play, they might bring him back on a short contract (no more than a couple of years). They probably wouldn’t want to pay more than $2 million or $3 million for him — and, if there is little market for him, they could get him for the vet minimum.
As for Okung, a reunion seems much less likely. He negotiated his own deal with the Broncos last year, making $5 million in 2016 and giving Denver the option for the remaining four years and $48 million. He didn’t play well enough to merit that, so he will be a free agent again.
The Seahawks didn’t want to deal with Okung the agent, especially knowing they weren’t going to offer him much. It will be interesting to see whether Okung sticks to his guns and represents himself again. And it will be interesting to see what his market ends up being. But it seems doubtful the Hawks will want to bring him back — unless it’s on a short-term deal heavy with incentives.
Okung will join a free-agent tackle class that figures to include Andrew Whitworth, Ricky Wagner, Kelvin Beachum, Riley Reiff and Ryan Clady. Unless the Hawks get one of those guys at a bargain, they seem unlikely to sign one — instead sticking with George Fant or a cheap challenger.
At right tackle, though, they might view Giacomini as a good value for a reunion.