Seattle Notebook: Free agency may threaten stability
Notebook: Free agency may threaten stability
By José Miguel Romero
Seattle Times staff reporter
Free agency is still five months away, and the Seahawks still have at least 13 games to play before their season ends.
But the front office is certainly aware of the fact that the Seahawks have 16 potential unrestricted free agents and an additional five players who are scheduled to become restricted free agents next March.
Not that the situation is at the forefront of the players' minds during the team's hot start, but they are aware of it. Defensive end Chike Okeafor, whose two-year contract signed in the 2003 offseason is up at the end of this season, hopes the team can stay as intact as possible.
"I think that would be in their best interests," Okeafor said. "We really have a great nucleus going here. It would be a shame if this was the only year that we had to play with each other. But ... all you can do is go out there and play your hardest and end up in the right place. You talk about building a dynasty; it's definitely the kind of foundation you build it on."
Agent Kenny Zuckerman believes that winning will go a long way in deciding which and how many Seahawks are re-signed.
"A lot of what they (the Seahawks) do will be predicated on success," said Zuckerman, who represents Seattle tackle Wayne Hunter. "Winning guarantees that more of those free agents will be there next year."
The Seahawks should have the money under the NFL salary cap to re-sign the players they feel they need.
The team would gain cap space if it signed Walter Jones to a long-term deal rather than continue to pay the left tackle from one year to the next.
"They have their priorities that they have to try to sign back," said wide receiver Alex Bannister, who will be eligible for free agency. "At the same time, I have to do what's best for Alex Bannister, whether it's here or somewhere else. But I definitely would love to stay here."
• The Seahawks held tryouts for DEs Charles Alston and Claude Harriott and DTs Ahmad Childress and Davern Williams yesterday. Harriott, a fifth-round draft pick of the Chicago Bears this year, was released before the season started.
• Bremerton-based Kitsap Ferry Co. will start its Game Day Express passenger ferry service between the Bremerton Passenger Ferry Dock and Seattle's Pier 56 on Sunday. The ferry leaves Bremerton at 11:45 a.m. and sails back 30 minutes after the Rams-Seahawks game at Qwest Field. A round-trip ticket costs $10. • Fewer than 500 tickets remain for Sunday's game, which virtually guarantees the game will be seen on local television.
Re: Seattle Notebook: Free agency may threaten stability
I would imagine Hasselbeck will get a Pennington-like deal, Jones will be franchised again, and Alexander will probably test the market.