On Wednesday morning, the Seattle Seahawks released defensive end Chris Clemons, a move that cleared more than $7 million in cap space. While it seems like a simple move on the surface, the Seahawks could actually be making room to sign defensive end Jared Allen.
One of his rumored landing spots, the Seahawks have had interest in acquiring Allen for some time. They attempted to work out a deal with the Minnesota Vikings prior to the 2013 trade deadline, but couldn’t come to terms. Now, they’ll have an opportunity to sign the veteran pass rusher on their own terms after his contract with the Vikings expired.
The biggest roadblock, though, could be money.
Allen has made it clear since the beginning of free agency that he’s not going to take a cheaper deal than he deserves. With 10 NFL seasons and 128.5 sacks under his belt, he’s expecting to sign a lucrative contract. If an offer doesn’t materialize that matches his self-worth, Allen has said that he’d be content with walking away from the game.
Moving on from Clemons and clearing some cap space certainly helped, but the Seahawks can’t afford to spend too much on Allen after handing fellow defensive end Michael Bennett a four-year, $34 million deal on Monday. Seattle would love to have Allen bookending their defensive line, but shouldn’t budge for anything more than $7 million per year.
If he were signed, Allen would likely find a role as a pass-rush specialist, splitting time at right end with Cliff Avril. He might not see as much action as he has in recent years with the Vikings, but could still be a productive third-down end with the chance to put up double-digit sacks along the Seahawks’ outstanding defensive line.
It’s still to be seen what kind of figures Allen is looking for, but Seattle could be an ideal landing spot for the 31-year-old pass rush specialist. If the Seahawks can table a solid offer, expect Allen to be in navy and green in 2014.