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Seattle Seahawks’ Geno Smith has cost himself a lot of cash with recent performances

For a good chunk of the 2022 NFL season, Seattle Seahawks quarterback Geno Smith was an under-the-radar MVP candidate.

The veteran journeyman surprised the masses by playing at a high level while being tasked with replacing franchise legend Russell Wilson. In fact, Smith has outplayed his counterpart through a vast majority of the campaign.

A second-round pick of the New York Jets back in 2013, no one really saw this coming. Heading into the 2022 season, Smith had thrown 34 career touchdowns compared to 37 interceptions. He was, by any measure, nothing more than a veteran backup and journeyman.

Then, something clicked in Seattle. Smith turned around his fledgling career and performed at a high clip for a surprising Seahawks squad that found itself at 6-3 through nine games. For his part, Smith was a primary reason why.

Following Saturday’s loss to the Kansas City Chiefs, Seattle now finds itself at 7-8 on the season and pretty much eliminated from playoff contention in the process. Seattle has lost five of six since that surprising start to the season. For his part, Smith has fallen back down to Earth as he preperes to hit free agency in March.

Related: Geno Smith and the top NFL free agents of 2022-23

Geno Smith’s struggles will cause chain reaction during NFL free agency

geno smith, nfl free agency
Denny Medley-USA TODAY Sports

The expectation all season long has been that Smith will net a contract in free agency that will give the 32-year-old signal caller between $33 to $35 million, something similar to what Jared Goff is playing under with the Detroit Lions.

There’s expected to be a strong market for starting quarterbacks once NFL free agency opens with as many as 14 teams looking to add a QB1. Unfortunately, Smith has not played at that level over the course of his past few outings. In fact, the West Virginia product has thrown eight touchdowns with five turnovers over the course of the past four games.

With the likes of Jacoby Brissett, Jimmy Garoppolo and potentially Tom Brady available in free agency this coming spring, these recent struggles could force team to take a second look at Smith’s entire career.

Remember, we’re talking about a former second-round bust who had started all of five games between 2015 and 2021, throwing nine touchdowns during that span.

At this point, it seems to make the most sense for Smith to return to the Seahawks on a shorter-term deal as the rebuilding team adds a young quarterback with one of its two first-round picks in the 2023 NFL Draft. If so, Seattle might not be battling with a ton of teams to retain Smith. That supply and demand aspcet to the equation will end up costing the veteran a ton of cash in the long run.