Seahawks GM John Schneider thanked both Bryant and Rice for their contributions to the team.
“We want to thank both Red & Sidney for their effort, commitment & contribution to the Seattle Seahawks over the last few years. These are extremely tough decisions, but we wanted to give them a head start on free agency. We wish them well in the future.”
To put it lightly, Bryant was let go to save the Seahawks some money. If another team does not sign Bryant, the Seahawks hope to re-sign him at a lower price tag. On the flip side, Rice was released due to the fact that he struggled to stay healthy during his tenure in Seattle, missing 15 regular-season games in his three years with the Seahawks. The organization could not justify the five-year, $41 million deal they signed Rice to in 2011.
Rice did not hold a grudge; on his twitter account he said, “The number 12 will remain on the left side of my chest no matter what! Grateful for the opportunity to share so many special moments with yall.”
Seattle may not be done releasing players; defensive end Chris Clemons and tight end Zach Miller may be the next casualties, potentially saving the Seahawks another $12.5 million.