Russell Wilson's new deal to remain a Seahawk basically "forever" seems like it may take almost that long to get done.
Jason Cole of Bleacher Report is the latest to chime in with how far apart the Seahawks are with quarterback Russell Wilson on a contract extension that at the start of this noisy offseason seemed to be a fait accompli.
Cole says in this posting today "in talking to sources who understand the situation, Wilson is looking for a contract in excess of $20 million per year over five years. The problem is, the Seahawks have no desire to get anywhere close to that."
Cole, a respected long-time national writer on the league formerly of Yahoo! Sports and the Miami Herald, says Seattle knows the math of letting Wilson's waaaaaay undervalued rookie contract as a third-round pick in 2012 end and then using the franchise tag to keep him for the 2016 and '17 seasons: a cost of about $45-48 million. That includes the $1.5 million in base salary for the 2015 season, the final one on his original deal. That's $12-15 million less over three years than Wilson is believed to be asking for, a saved amount the team could use to sign one or potentially two more starters for those seasons.
So the Seahawks, Cole says, are willing to wait and let the Super Bowl starter in two of his first three NFL years play out his rookie contract.
"Wilson," Cole adds, "has become increasingly frustrated, according to sources I've talked to, which explains many of his recent tweets."
Such as this one yesterday:
Cole says Wilson feels disrespected, while the Seahawks aren't budging.
"Any expectation of getting a contract done this offseason is highly unlikely," Cole said.
Wilson's representative, Mark Rodgers, hasn't said anything publicly throughout negotiations that began in earnest following the Super Bowl Feb. 1
Two weeks ago, Pete Carroll said this on what the coach termed as slowed talks with Wilson:
“We won’t talk much about it because there’s a lot of stuff—it is such a crucial thing. We are so excited about getting Russell (an extension) and keeping him forever. We want to do all of that. He has been an extraordinary player for us and we all recognize that. It’s a big deal. There’s a lot of work to be done. It’s been draft-focused for us on our end, and there’s going to be continuing talks. It’s totally in motion.
"Whatever happens, happens. But we will work it out and make it a great deal and have him here forever.”
The same day Carroll said that, as the drafted ended on May 2, general manager John Schneider said of contract negotiating for the Seahawks, in general:
"I tell people all of the time when I meet with them, especially agents, that it’s not any different than playing Madden: You have money to spend in a certain amount of room, and you have to make everything fit," Schneider said. "Every year—we try to draft good players all the way through—but you also have to draft according to what your future may or may not hold, kind of worst-case scenario.
"We’ve seen this and we’ve had to adapt," Carroll added. "It’s kind of a natural progression of acquiring really good players and maintaining the core of our team to fit that altogether. It’s a master plan that John has been working on. We keep working on this and it continues to challenge us, which is why we have those difficult decisions at the end of the year that we have to make. I think John has done an amazing job keeping this going. We have the core together and ready to come back again and put together a great camp to get started again. There will always be some faces changed.”
“That’s a great point," Schenider concluded, "the game has changed. And as much as you’re excited to give somebody an extension, or draft a player, and then somebody may be leaving and it hurts when you have to do that. It’s part of our game.”
Asked how far he's got salary caps and potential caps planned for the team Schneider said: "Three years... It’s not like we make callous decisions. We weren’t really fired up about letting Chris Clemons go and Red Bryant -- and there’s been a lot of guys.
"You only have a certain amount of money to work with, cap space.”