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April 28, 2014 at 7:14 PM

Assessing Seattle’s salary cap situation in aftermath of Thomas signing with OTC’s Jason Fitzgerald

With Earl Thomas now in the fold through the 2018 season (here’s our latest story with details), the question now becomes how his deal impacts Seattle’s efforts to keep its core together going forward.

So as we’ve done here before, I turned to Jason Fitzgerald of OvertheCap.com for his thoughts on the Thomas signing and what it means for signing Richard Sherman.

Here’s what he said:

“Without knowing the particulars of the deal its hard to say if it will be a good deal for Seattle or not. In terms of dollars the contract is huge. The $10 million per year average represents an 11 percent increase over the largest veteran contract at the position.

“That said, the timing of the contract is right for the Seahawks. Since they will roll his existing contract into the deal, Seattle will account for the contract at a value of about $9 million a season, which gives them more flexibility over the term of the contract. He was set to earn $4.725 million in 2014 and that money can now be called “guaranteed” to artificially inflate that portion of the contract. It also gets him locked up before another team, such as the Lions, might do something crazy with Ndamukong Suh that raises the bar for defensive players.

“I think this will be interesting to see what this means for Richard Sherman. If Seattle is willing to go 11 percent higher for the best safety in the NFL, does that mean they will do exactly the same for Sherman and would that be acceptable to him or would he want to surpass his teammate? Depending on whose contract the Seahawks work off of Brandon Carr of the Cowboys (making $10.2 million for five years) or the one year value of Darrelle Revis of the Patriots, (reported at $12 million) it should set Shermans price range between $11.1 and $13.3 million. If he wants more Seattle would need to boost those levels in order to keep him.”

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