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I know what you're thinking, wasn't Jared Cook franchised by the Tennessee Titans?
I myself thought so a few weeks ago, but according to The Seattle Times Danny O'Neil, he might be up for grabs:
Tennessee’s Jared Cook was going to argue he was a wide receiver — not a tight end — if he was designated as the Titans’ franchise player. Easy to understand why given the $4 million difference in franchise-tag prices between the positions and the reality that Cook lined up in the slot or split out wide more often than he put his hand in the dirt.
The Titans did not tag Cook, who caught 44 passes in Tennessee last season. That means barring a last-minute deal in Tennessee, he’s headed to the free-agent market.
Seattle has not made a habit of spending big in free agency. In two of the past three years, the Seahawks have sat out the first wave of free agency almost entirely.
But Seattle has also shown a persistent desire to create a formidable tight-end tandem that goes back to 2011 when the Seahawks signed Zach Miller to a big-budget deal with the expectation of pairing him alongside John Carlson. Then Carlson suffered a shoulder injury that cost him the entire season.
Seattle traded for Kellen Winslow a year ago only to release the tight end after he refused the paycut that had been outlined.
Could Cook be another attempt? Well, it’s unlikely given the fact that Seattle already has so much money committed to Miller. But it’s also worth asking because Cook is an accomplished receiver in his mid-20s coming off his first NFL contract. It fits the profile of the type of free agents the Seahawks have gone after that is when they’ve decided to wade into the market.
Perhaps, but perhaps not.
Meanwhile if that situation isn't strange enough for you, the Seahawks on Tuesday signed former UC Irvine basketball player Darren Fells to a three-year contract to play tight end, according to Doug Farrar over at the Shutdown Corner on Yahoo!Sports:
The Seattle Seahawks are the latest team to take advantage of this trend, and they did so in a surprising way when they signed former international basketball player Darren Fells to a three-year contract on Tuesday. Fells is the brother of Daniel Fells, an NFL tight end who has played for the St. Louis Rams, the Denver Broncos, and most recently, the New England Patriots. The 6-foot-7, 280-pound Fells, who will turn 27 in April, visited the Seahawks on Tuesday in anticipation of a Pro Day he planned to hold at a later date, but he never got out of the building -- Fells impressed Seattle's football people enough to nab a three-year deal.
Just when you think you know what the 'Hawks' brain trust is doing, it comes up with something out of left field.
At this point the only thing I think everyone can agree on is that current tight end Zach Miller is costing the 'Hawks a lot of money, but whether Cook, Fells, Anthony McCoy, a draft pick or anyone else plays alongside him remains to be seen.