The Seahawks apparently are still in the trade game, both as potential buyers and sellers. Could they marry the two to add another pass rusher?
After John Schneider’s typical shrewd move to add an impact veteran – getting Carlos Dunlap from Cincinnati for B.J. Finney and a seventh-rounder – word is the GM may indeed still be on the lookout for another pass rusher.
The ideal options would be veteran stars Ryan Kerrigan and Melvin Ingram, with young Takk McKinley and Chase Winovich possible secondary choices. The Hawks reportedly inquired about Dallas pass rusher Aldon Smith, but were rebuffed.
Even at age 32, Kerrigan likely would be the most impactful pass-rush addition for Seattle. Washington’s longtime sack master has four in part-time work this season behind WFT’s young stars, Chase Young and Montez Sweat. Kerrigan would be a great addition opposite Dunlap, and the Hawks would be definite contenders (the two vets from longtime losers would have to love that).
Seattle probably could get the pending free agent Kerrigan for Jacob Hollister and a 2022 fifth-rounder (the kind of pick Washington might get as a comp for losing him next offseason).
The Hawks would have to make cap space for him. But they already need to make some room for Dunlap anyway. They could simply convert Russell Wilson’s salary to a bonus to create $12 million in space. That would cover the $2 million they need for Dunlap and the $5 million they would need after a Hollister-Kerrigan deal. That would leave Seattle with around $5 million for the rest of the season – with any remainder rolling over to 2021. Wilson’s restructure would suck $2.5 million off the 2021 cap, so the rollover ideally would offset that in what figures to be a tight year under the cap.
Then there’s Ingram, who has not been mentioned in league scuttlebutt but who still might be available. The 31-year-old star is in the final year of his contract, and the Chargers have made no move to extend him off the deal he signed in 2017. He missed three games with a knee injury earlier this season, and he is just getting back in shape.
If the Chargers are planning to let him go in the offseason, as it appears, perhaps they would take a 2022 third-round pick for him (the best they would get in a possible comp for losing him in free agency). He has $8 million left this year, slightly more than Kerrigan, so a Wilson restructure would easily cover this move as well.
Either Dunlap-Kerrigan or Dunlap-Ingram would be a great pair of “hired guns” who would make the Seahawks the clear favorites to win the Super Bowl.
McKinley or Winovich would be cheaper options, but still perhaps better than what the Hawks have at LEO right now.
There’s no guarantee McKinley, recovering from a groin injury, would be a big upgrade over Benson Mayowa or Alton Robinson, but he sure dominated the Seahawks in the season opener (a sack, six QB hits). He has barely played since then due to his injury. If Schneider can get him for maybe a 2022 sixth, it would be a cheap price to pay.
Winovich is a suddenly interesting possibility. The 2019 third-rounder had 5.5 sacks as a rookie reserve and has 2.5 sacks and six QB hits as a starter this season. He’s very cheap for the Patriots, but Bill Belichick loves trading players and apparently is listening to offers for almost anyone on his roster. The problem is the Hawks don’t have a lot of 2021 draft stock left; so, even if they were interested, they might not have what Belichick would want.
Even if the Hawks don’t pick up another pass rusher, there’s a good chance they’ll make an outgoing deal. They reportedly were dangling Hollister (and his $1.9M remaining cap hit) last week and got good interest, so don’t be surprised if he gets dealt.
Per Albert Breer: “Hollister drummed up so much interest across the league that I don’t think it’s impossible someone will put something in front of the Seahawks they have to consider.”
The Seahawks have just four 2021 picks left, so moving Hollister would serve the dual purpose of opening some cap space and adding another cherished pick for Schneider.