Following another disappointing exit in the playoffs, the NFL MVP candidate took some time away from the game. Upon his return to the spotlight, Wilson became unusually candid about his frustrations with the roster and the level of power Pete Carroll has with the Seahawks.
The 32-year-old quarterback put the front office and coaching staff under the spotlight, just days after rival teams inquired with Seattle about his availability for trade. Before long, the unhappiness was mutual. But even as all of this unfolded, many never believed a blockbuster deal would happen.
Now, based on the latest trade rumors, Seattle’s plans might be changing and a deal might be more likely.
NFL rumors: Increasing chance Seattle Seahawks trade Russell Wilson
Sports Illustrated’s Albert Breer wrote that he believed a few weeks ago that there was a 95% chance the Seahawks wouldn’t trade Wilson this year. Now, with Seattle listening to offers, the NFL insider believes there is a 40% chance Wilson plays for a new team next season.
The Seahawks never planned to trade their face of the franchise this year, rejecting calls when they came in. Once Wilson called the organization out publicly, though, the Seahawks seemingly became more willing to engage the thought of a blockbuster trade.
Wilson’s agent let it be known that the eight-time Pro Bowl quarterback prefers to remain with Seattle. He wants the team to dedicate this offseason to rebuilding the offensive line, shaping the identity of the offense around the passing attack and taking an all-in approach for a Super Bowl. However, he also provided the Seahawks with a list of teams he would happily play for via trade.
It’s worth noting, this wouldn’t be the first offseason Seattle’s front office considered moving on from the franchise star. The team reportedly offered him to the Cleveland Browns for the No. 1 pick in the 2018 NFL Draft. Meanwhile, general manager John Schneider reportedly planned to draft Patrick Mahomes if he fell to the Seahawks in the 2017 NFL Draft.
Of course, trading Wilson this year would be more complicated. Due to the shrinking 2021 NFL salary cap, teams have significantly less money to spend this offseason. Moving on from the former Super Bowl champion would leave the Seahawks with a $39 million cap hit, a staggering price to pay for a player who wouldn’t be on the roster.
It’s important to note, per Breer, that Seattle involved Wilson in the hiring of offensive coordinator Shane Waldron. There is also clear interest from both sides in trying to make this work. But if the Seahawks’ front office doesn’t make any significant moves in the next few weeks, it might not be a surprise if Russell Wilson demands a trade.