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The Seattle Seahawks may be done shopping in the free-agent market this year. Then again, there is always room for improvement and sometimes it helps to get a veteran.
As the Seahawks get closer to training camp, it will be time to see if the rookies and non-roster invitees can earn jobs and make a contribution. Of course, there will be those that simply do not perform well enough to impress the coaching staff.
In addition, there is the tough reality of injuries, which has already impacted the Seahawks now that Anthony McCoy is gone. If more players go down, the Seahawks may need to start making a few phone calls to proven quantities.
The NFL is a tough league, and there are still plenty of players on the market who could probably play. However, they remain unemployed as teams move on and reload with young draft picks.
If times get tough and the Seahawks need an experienced body, they may make some contacts. Here is a list of five players that might be on their list.
Dallas Clark, Tight End
With the loss of Anthony McCoy, the Seahawks will need to find another tight end to pair with Zach Miller. There are a number of options at this point, including Sean McGrath and fifth-round draft pick Luke Willson.
There are also players like Darren Fells, and while these types of athletes make for interesting stories, Seattle may need to bring in a veteran at some point. That may not be determined until later in the summer.
One free agent possibility is Dallas Clark, who is an experienced pro and a guy who would lend a wealth of veteran knowledge. Granted, Clark is older, and he may not provide a great deal of statistical output at this point in his career. Still, Clark caught 47 balls for four touchdowns while playing 16 games for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers in 2012.
If the Seahawks find that they are one veteran offensive weapon away from a complete offense, they may want to lob a call to Mr. Clark. Some of the youngsters just may not work out.
Nick Barnett, Linebacker
Some fans assumed that the Seahawks would look to replace Leroy Hill through the draft. However, they went in some different directions and the 'Hawks exited the 2013 NFL draft without any linebackers.
Granted, K.J. Wright is looking to switch over to the weak side according to Seahawks.com. In addition, the Seahawks have worked hard to meet their defensive needs with young talent over the last couple of years.
However, there may come a point when Seattle finds that it needs one more veteran piece to complete its talented defense. One possibility is Nick Barnett, who was most recently with the Buffalo Bills.
Barnett is an older player, but he played 16 games in each of the last two seasons. Therefore, his age, experience and relative durability could be a nice addition to the Seahawks if they were looking to go that direction.
It would be a step away from the methodology of the last few seasons, but the Seahawks may be looking to balance youth with veteran experience.
Richard Seymour, Defensive Tackle
Richard Seymour is another veteran that could provide some guidance but is a bit past his prime. Are you sensing a theme here?
It isn’t like the Seahawks are going to go out of their way to find guys whose best years are far in the rear-view mirror. However, there is value in having players around who have been through the ups and downs of a long NFL season.
Seymour has been in the NFL for 13 years, and he has played in 164 games. He did miss eight games in 2012, so he may not have much left.
There are rumors that Seymour could end up with the Atlanta Falcons. If that doesn't happen and the 'Hawks find that they need a defensive tackle later in the summer, they might think about giving Seymour a call. Tony McDaniel currently represents the veteran presence, and the Seahawks drafted Jordan Hill and Jesse Williams for the future.
Still, things can change rapidly in the NFL.
Eric Winston, Offensive Tackle
Do the Seahawks need an offensive tackle? It depends on which fan you ask.
The offensive line played well down the stretch last season, but there are still those who worry about the right side of the line. Do the Seahawks risk hurting their continuity by bringing in another offensive tackle?
Eric Winston is still out there, and though there is the possibility that he might sign with the Miami Dolphins, he does represent an experienced tackle that could be called upon if the Seahawks feel like they need a change. Granted, Seattle already has a number of options at offensive tackle.
One assumes that the Seahawks would like to see if their draft picks over the last couple of seasons will work out. Unfortunately, injuries have taken their toll on young players like James Carpenter and John Moffitt.
The 'Hawks did draft Michael Bowie in the seventh round, so Seattle may stick with the youth movement and avoid the high-priced free agent tackle. Then again, a little experience can go a long way.
Tim Tebow, Position TBD (Just Not QB)
Go ahead. React as you will.
Laugh. Get angry. Scream at a computer screen, tablet or smartphone. Spit your coffee all over your keyboard. Yes, I am serious. Place a call to the “Chosen One.”
Really, why not?
Tebow still has something to offer an NFL team. The sales pitch could go like this:
Pete Carroll: “Hey Tim, it’s Pete Carroll. Say, we are interested in inviting you to camp. But, you won’t be playing quarterback. Period. Even if everyone get’s hurt, we will re-sign Josh Portis and play him at QB before we put you under center. Interested in changing positions?”
If Tim is open to changing positions, bring him in. Fullback. Tight end. Special teams. Linebacker?
Sure, it’s a stretch, but who knows? Maybe the Chosen One could bring some of his magic to CenturyLink and help the ‘Hawks get over the top.