Even after signing Pro Bowl tight end Zach Miller to a five-year deal reportedly worth $34 million, the Seattle Seahawks figure to have around $14 million available to spend. That’s enough to bring in disgruntled New York Giants pass rusher Osi Umenyiora.
The Seahawks reportedly are among 20-plus teams to have shown interest in the 29-year-old end, who has 32 sacks and 19 forced fumbles over the last three years.
The Giants want a first-round pick, and Umenyiora—unhappy with a deal that will pay him $3.1 million this year—surely wants a deal that at least equals the six-year, $72 million contract that relatively unknown DE Charles Johnson signed with the Carolina Panthers.
The Seahawks aren’t going to give up their first-round pick—they’re saving it in case they can get a quarterback next year—but they might be willing to offer up a second-rounder.
Or, maybe they will offer tight end John Carlson now that they have Miller.
After a great first two years (50-plus catches in 2008 and 2009), Carlson virtually disappeared in 2010. He’s a great young tight end, and the Seahawks have not used him well enough. He will be a free agent in 2012, so this is the time to trade him, if the Hawks can get anything good in return.
The Giants have not re-signed Kevin Boss and could use a good tight end. Carlson is a cheap player (this year) with lots of talent.
The Seahawks, meanwhile, have promising young backup tight ends in Cam Morrah and Anthony McCoy, so they could afford to let Carlson go.
Because Carlson was drafted under the previous regime, it wouldn’t be a shock to see Pete Carroll and John Schneider trade him.
The Hawks also could package cornerback Marcus Trufant. His $5.9 million salary would be a good trade-off, if the Giants were interested in adding him. (They could always redo his deal to avoid paying him that much.)