The Seattle Seahawks have turned a potentially awful offseason into a rather strong one, making another positive move on Wednesday by signing star receiver Tyler Lockett to a four-year contract extension.
Per ESPN’s Adam Schefter, Lockett’s deal is worth $69.2 million and features $37 million guaranteed.
Now that Lockett is locked up for the long haul in Seattle, any trade speculation surrounding superstar quarterback Russell Wilson could grind to a halt.
When Wilson submitted a list of preferred trade destinations earlier this offseason, none of them made much sense. The New Orleans Saints couldn’t afford him. The Chicago Bears are seemingly proud to have Andy Dalton as their QB1. The Las Vegas Raiders are a mess. The Dallas Cowboys wound up paying Dak Prescott the big bucks.
Plus, with hindsight being 20/20, it seems crazy that Wilson would want to leave a situation where he had built such a strong rapport with Lockett. Over the past three seasons, Wilson has completed 239 out of 312 passes thrown Lockett’s way. That’s a 76.6% completion rate that has yielded 28 touchdowns.
ESPN’s Seth Walder provided a little more context in this vein regarding Lockett’s dependability.
Highest catch percentage over expectation, 2018-2020, minimum 200 targets:— Seth Walder (@SethWalder) March 31, 2021
Michael Thomas +14%
Tyler Lockett +12%
Stefon Diggs +9%
(NFL Next Gen Stats)
With DK Metcalf still yet to reach his full potential, Wilson arguably is armed with the best receiver duo in the league. It was worth at least one more year to see things through in Seattle. Now that Lockett has been taken care of before his would-be contract year, it’s obvious that the Seahawks are doing the best they can to patch things up with Wilson.
It wasn’t that Wilson didn’t like throwing to Lockett and Metcalf. It’s that the offensive line has largely failed him throughout his tenure in Seattle, and it’s led to tons of huge hits.
Some of that is on Wilson extending the play with his legs. His unique skill set yields huge chunk plays in the passing game, yet can also lead to being more exposed to a defense.
Despite all the times he’s been sacked and battered over the years, Wilson hasn’t missed a single start since taking the reins in 2012. It’s a testament to his toughness and his will to compete, which is in direct alignment to what head coach Pete Carroll preaches as a primary pillar of his organizational culture.
Now, Carroll and Seahawks general manager John Schneider are hearing Wilson’s grievances and addressing them.
An uncertain future for Lockett beyond 2021? Taken care of. Upgrades on the offensive line? Schneider swung a trade for former Raiders guard Gabe Jackson.
Seattle also re-signed tailback Chris Carson, which may have initially been viewed as a sign the Seahawks were going to commit more to the running game. Instead, it now feels more like insurance that the offense stays balanced to the point where Wilson doesn’t have to carry the team on his shoulders all the time.
Things are definitely trending in the right direction when it comes to Wilson’s long-term outlook in Seattle, and Lockett’s extension is the latest evidence that the Seahawks’ beloved field general will remain with the team.