Seahawks Insider

Maybe Deion Branch has trade value

Post by Eric Williams on Feb. 28, 2010 at 7:44 am with 55 Comments »
February 28, 2010 7:44 am

Hey folks, I had computer issues on Saturday so I didn’t get a chance to post some tidbits from Seahawks head coach Pete Carroll and general manager John Schneider’s conversation with Seattle-area reporters who cover the team.

I wrote a story on that conversation for today’s paper, which you can check out here. And I’ll post the full transcript later today.

But here’s a few tidbits.

*Both Carroll and Schneider said signing Olindo Mare to the franchise tag tender of $2.8 million was a no-brainer based on the lucrative deal the Oakland Raiders gave Sebastian Janikowski.

* The Seahawks have spoken to wide receiver Nate Burleson, who will become an unrestricted free agent next week, and remain interested in bringing him back.

* Carroll will continue to emphasis speed and athleticism over girth and sheer size in rebuilding the team, particularly on defense as they try to get better on the edges to develop a better pass rush.

* The Seahawks still believe Deion Branch can play, and he fits in the new offensive system. But they are willing to listen to any trade proposals. And according to several reporters we’ve talked to here, there appears to be legitimate interest in Branch from other teams in the league like the New England Patriots. With teams like Denver, Kansas City and Cleveland running similar systems to the Patriots, New England may be willing to give up a late-round pick to secure his services before Seattle potentially releases him next week, as long as Branch is willing to restructure his contract. Branch has a history with QB Tom Brady, and he would give New England some security with Wes Welker coming off of ACL surgery. Plus Branch still has two years on his deal.

*Carroll said getting a quarterback for the future will be a focus of this year’s draft and future drafts. Carroll said he’s happy to have a quarterback like Matt Hasselbeck in the fold, but the team can’t afford to ignore an important position like quarterback, and will look to make sure they are solid there each season.

Leave a comment Comments → 55
  1. And here I thought Eric was too busy whooping it up to get any updates completed.

    If we could get anything for Branch, that’d be great.

  2. Dukeshire says:

    Yes, anything they can get in return is a bonus. It’s a shame he wasn’t more productive here, but he’s emblematic of this entire organizations decline since his arrival.

    That last bullet point will not be well received by some. I however think it’s the right approach and a responsible one.

    Eric, glad to have you back. I want you down there with Eisen running 40s before you head home! lol.

  3. seahawklovertoo says:

    Eric, if You attach a dollar bill to Your computer and leave it on the sidewalk, maybe someone will take it . That way you’ll save on disposal fees. LOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOL….argh… cough, cough

  4. I would hate to see Branch go. The reports are correct that he is still able to play, unfortunately his stay here in Seattle has not been what was expected. Perhaps it was the change through 2 different offensive schemes during his stay here. He had to learn Homgren’s system, then he survived through Mora.

    There is no doubt that he still has big playmaking ability within him.

    But football is business and if we can clear his contract and get something in return, that would be a great move. The added plus, if this happens with the Pats, Branch would probably be happen to return back to his team. Where he would be confident that he can be productive.

  5. heyyou_66 says:

    If we can get a six pack of beer for him……let it be done!

  6. heyyou_66 says:

    Duke……. Running 40’s with or with out the sweetness of the sweater vest?????

  7. Dukeshire says:

    You figure Eisen will be in his suit, as usual, so got to go sweater vest. Lol.

  8. Does Bobby Engram have anything left in his tank? If so he &Hasselbeck had a good thing going…bring him back if he dose for cheapsalary justa thought

  9. I’m a bit concerned that if we lose Branch & Burleson the only proven WR left will be Housh. Oh well, if the intended plan is for a 4 win rebuilding season guess it doesn’t matter anyways. But if that is the plan, we might as well get some value for Matt also.

    If the plan ISN’T for rebuilding, we’d best keep our wideouts or else have a serious plan in place to replace them.

  10. Here is my worry about all of the celebrating about Deion Branch being traded/cut/released. If we loose both Nate and Dieon, doesn’t that put us right back where we were two years ago with lack of depth at receiver? You all know what happened. Loosing both would also force us to take at least one receiver in the draft, probably an early pick. To me we need to focus on replenishing the O and D lines before we focus on anything else. Without decent lines we will continue our downward spiral.
    Free agency is coming quick, maybe some holes can be fixed, but usually these are costly acquisitions.
    If we ignore the O line maybe we can pick up abruiser RB or two like Toby Gearhart, we will need that kind of back to make holes. I don’t believe in the late round O line pickups being immediately successful at the pro level.

  11. BlueTalon says:

    We overpaid for Branch, no doubt, but if he had performed up to the level of his promise instead of being injured, few people would be complaining about him. It’s just damned bad luck, that’s all.

    I’m glad to hear there is interest in a possible trade for him. But if he is willing to renegotiate his contract to facilitate a trade, he may be willing to renegotiate his contract to stay under the new regime. It’s worth pursuing.

  12. Dukeshire says:

    That’s a legitimate concern, depth at receiver. Hopefully they can get something in return for Branch, because I don’t think there is any question they’ll cut him if they can’t trade him. It’s Burleson that presents the biggest question. He’s going to be expensive, but they can’t afford to let him just walk, for the reasons you mentioned. There’s no question they would have franchised him if the tag wasn’t $9 mil. The sooner they lock him back up, the better but I wouldn’t expect anything before the draft.

  13. chuck_easton says:


    I would actually think the willingness to re-negotiate is opposite of what you are suggesting.

    Branch has expressed a willingness (desire almost) to return to N.E. I think he’d be more willing to re-negotiate a contract with them than to re-structure to stay in Seattle.

    I don’t think Branch’s ego would allow him to consider taking a paycut to stay in Seattle. On the other hand, he’s gotten quite a bit of his money from this franchise and may just like to go back to his glory years with the Pats and forget his unfortunate (but very profitable for him) years in Seattle.

  14. I agree. There’s no way he’d negotiate to stay here (less money & not where he wants to be) when he could go somewhere (NE) that he’s almost made perfectly clear he’d like to go back to. And with Welker out, he’d be a perfect fit for Brady again.

  15. If the Seahawks could “reload” by adding a couple of pieces then I’d be concerned about losing Burl and Branch but that isn’t the case. This team is and needs to be rebuilding. That means getting younger guys in and building from scratch. Anyone with fantasy’s of adding a few guys that their current teams aren’t willing to pay for and think that we’re going back to playoffs soon is crazy. It rarely works. We don’t have any star power to build around on this team anyway (except Hass and he’s a middle level star that’s on the decline). I don’t want to keep these guys around so that when all of the younger guys are peaking our QB and Receivers are closer to 40 than 30. We’ve been trying to reload since Hutch left (5 years) and it hasn’t worked. All it has done is brought in mediocre talent for superstar money.

  16. Dukeshire says:

    Unrelated to Branch; RBs are not disappointing. Of the biger names – Spiller 4.28. Best 4.33. Matthews 4.41. Hardesty 4.53. Gerhart 5.58. Dwyer 5.59.

  17. We are in position to draft the most prolific pass receiver since Randy Moss. We’ll see but it does look like the stars will align. Burleson exits FA, Branch cut or trade, leaves Sea in need come draft day.

    Okung 38 bench press has proven to be the beast of the LT‘s. Bradfords shoulder has checked out and split consensus overall #1 DT’s Suh/McCoy will disappear off the board before 6. Clausen could go anywhere from 1-5. Should StL go another route a team may covet him enough to move above Sea. If not, Sea may roll the dice on another Notre Dame QB. Seahawks selected Rick Mirer second in the first round of the 1993 draft. He was to be the next Joe Montana.

    Having witnessed the above and also the search for a #1 WR since ‘99 when Holmgren traded Galloway leads me to believe Dez Bryant becomes a Seahawk. Crabtree began the ‘09 off season #1 overall before the toe surgery. SF chose him at 10 and missing training camp the rookie still put up 625 yards in 12 games. Bryant being superior in talent, factor in OTA’s and training camp, figures to explode on the NFL. This is the playmaker needed Carrol has alluded to.

  18. And Mr. Happy could really care less about character or off-field issues, so I can see it being Bryant, too. He’s definitely got skills.

  19. seahawklovertoo says:

    Spiller = maybe YES in first rd. ; Best = NO ; Matthews ? never seen him ; Hardesty = yes/no/maybe ; Gerhart = YES ; Dwyer = yes in second – fourth ; Blount = YES ( in fourth rd.) ; “little” T. Holliday = YES,YES,YES in fourth/fifth rd.
    My vote goes to Holliday + Blount or Gerhart.

  20. Please keep Nate Burleson!!! The ONLY playmaker we have at WR and PR. He is worth the money.

    If Branch has trade value, take it now! I love the idea of bundling him with draft pics to trade for Brandon Marshall, but Branch might not have enough value for that trade. He’s a too-small WR who can no longer separate from CBs. If NE is stupid enough to give up a draft pick for him, take it.

  21. Dukeshire says:

    I don’t see Seattle taking a WR with any of the first 3 picks, for good or ill. Matthews looked good in everything he did today. I’d be surprised if he fell to 40, but if they don’t take Spiller, he’s the guy I want. To me, as I said some time back, Blount looks like another TJ Duckett. Pass. Gerhart on the other hand, looked good. I was never really impressed with him at Stanford despite the numbers, but this 40 time seemed to legitimize some of that. I want to like Best, and I watched him quite a bit at Cal, he just seemed to not show up every game, for some reason so I’m uncertain where I fall out on him.

    At Clemson, Spiller had 52 TDs. 21 were 50 yards or longer. He’s the guy I want at 14, if he’s still there.

  22. seahawklovertoo says:

    How about : #6 & Branch for NEs ‘ 1st &3rd plus safety Pat Chung? Or, their #42,
    #54 and a fourth rounder plus Pat Chung?
    WAAAAASSUP Chuck Easton ?

  23. seahawklovertoo says:

    How about : #6 & Branch for NEs ‘ 1st &3rd plus safety Pat Chung? Or, their #42,
    #54 and a fourth rounder plus Pat Chung? They need some top quality to get back on top despite Jets and Dolphins surge.
    WAAAAASSUP Chuck Easton ?

  24. seahawklovertoo says:

    WOW, sorry for my nervous fingers.

  25. heyyou_66 says:

    Duke, With you 110% on the running backs. I want Spiller at 14 if there and very much like Matthews after his season and todays workout! If there at 40 and OT is addressed early, take him.

  26. Dukeshire says:

    They just drafted Chung last year, they’re not trading him. I don’t remember you clamoring for him last year at this time. Did you watch a lot of Patriot games this season?

  27. heyyou_66 says:

    Duke 110% there with you on RB’s. Would love Spiller at 14 or Matthews at 40.

  28. heyyou_66 says:

    damn comp lol

  29. seahawklovertoo says:

    Gents, as I posted some time ago I really like SMART people on our team. That is why I am so “hot” for Pat Chung or/and Myron Rolle for our safeties ( Rolle is a brain surgeon) Lofa (whom I don’t know in person) is very smart but, I’ve heard has a drinking problem so, if he goes elsewhere , we can have a safety for a leader on defense.
    For the same reason I like Toby Gerhart ; he is a legit genius who has a degree in engineering from STANFORD ! That alone is overly impressive to me, (and) when you can combine those intellectual traits with realistic physical ability to perform at their football positions — the choices are obvious to me. Now, Jon Kitna is the flip side of my argument….

  30. Dukeshire says:

    Yes, smart people are good to have, as long as the are football smart. I’m not certain an engineering degree from one of the nations best academic institutions is going to help you pick the right hole in a ZBS and out run a LB in hot pursuit. You’ve heard Lofa has a drinking problem? Where have you heard this? His DUI was a problem but you are suggesting something all together different.

  31. Duke – what would your dream scenario be for our 1st round picks? Spiller at #14, but who at #6? At this moment in time, I’m hoping for Okung/Iupati, but I certainly wouldn’t be upset if we ended up with any combination of Bulaga, Spiller, or Morgan either. Looking at how tough and the badasses they seem to be, Okung/Iupati would form a violent left side. I’d love that identity.

  32. seahawklovertoo says:

    No Duke, I don’t like the Patriots at all ( I got the sarcasm) and I don’t watch them much. But, I saw plenty of Pat Chung when he played for the Ducks. I know he is a rookie with NE… The logic is : if NE wants a high pick to draft top shelf play-maker, then they will have to give something good for it ! After all, it’s not like asking for Brady, Wilfork or Moss ; Chung is their second stringer that happened to be good enough to start elsewhere. Plus, if one follows NFL, one should know that the fire has been lit under Belicheck’s feet. They don’t take mediocrity lightly in Boston. Belichick is ripe for dealin’ .

  33. seahawklovertoo says:

    I wasn’t with the Insider this time last year. When Eric had us guessing/wishing
    whom we should pick , I had : A.Smith / Oher in first, Unger in second and Chung in third. check the archives.

  34. Spiller at #14 sound great Duke, UNLESS we don’t get an LT at #6. If we don’t get our LT at #6 then we will need to take one at #14, and we won’t get Spiller in that case. Besides, Spiller may be long gone at 14 anyway, so I think its a long shot he becomes a Seahawk.

    Which, is an illustration of why I hate that #6 pick. Too much risk riding on one high-priced player. As I’ve said, I think there are 3 or 4 starting-caliber LTs and no one knows which will be the best NFL player. If we can trade down from that #6 pick, we can still get our LT somewhere in the first round, and still have extra picks to spend.

  35. seahawklovertoo says:

    Sorry, don’t remember where I red about Lofa, It was long ago and NOT on TNT
    (maybe PI ?) One thing I know about the Pacific Islanders ( from my years in Hawaii} , they don’t have our ( Caucasian) tolerance for alcohol ( same like the Native Americans). Knowing this, I probably (wrongly) took this story for truth.
    BK, agree 100% with Okung/Iupati wish. We can temporary “patch-up” our need for offensive play-makers through FA market but, a pair of awesome and healthy left side lineman in their early 20s is priceless.

  36. Glad to see others thinking that Matthews would be a good choice but we would have to take him at #14. If we can get an LT at #6 or #40 then I am OK with that. This would mean that we would take a chance on a developmental QB later in the draft.

  37. Dukeshire says:

    Bobby – A difficult question I haven’t truly decided on. That said, here are a couple scenarios I would be happy with; Bradford, Bulaga / WIlliams, Matthews / Best. or Okung, Spiller, Lafell / C. Jones. or Bradford / Spiller / C. Brown. Something in that realm anyhow. In the coming weeks I’ve be more decisive. You?

  38. Dukeshire says:

    fresfan – Yes, I don’t see Mathews getting past the Patriots at 22 but if he did fall for some reason…

  39. Dukeshire says:

    I would like to see Seattle address DT but I don’t currently see that happening before the 4th.

  40. Yeah, I’m certainly not set yet on exactly what I want or hope for. Ideally, we’d be able to swing a trade up for Suh, combined with various trade down scenarios with the remaining pick or picks to add additional choices that we most likely used to get Suh (and to address OT in some way, shape, or form, yet in the draft). But I don’t see this happening. Too many variables.

  41. If the zone blocking system is so good why do so few teams use it? Gibbs says he doesn’t need first round picks to have a good O line. I have a sad feeling the O line will be as bad this season as it was in 08 and 09.

    Just my opinion but I see only five players worth the sixth pick in the draft. The two DTs, (Suh, McCoy) the two LTs (Okung, Bulaga) and the safety, Berry. Maybe some team will be dumb enough to draft Clausen or Bradford in the top five.

  42. A QB in the first round is a waste for the Hawks, given the many other priority needs. And…….especially to give up a first round pick for Bradford or Clausen. Some team will do it……God help us if it is the Hawks.

  43. I don’t think anybody, at any position (other than LS, K, P), is a waste of a 1st round pick, provided they become great. If you could guarantee me (which none of us can) that Lawrence Taylor would be available with the #6 pick, then I’d be all for us taking a, gulp, LB.

    At this point, if we can get Okung at #6, I’ll be a happy camper, although it’s looking more and more that he’ll be gone.

    It seems Bradford, Okung, McCoy, and Suh will be gone. What will Mr. Happy do? I’d give anything to be a fly on the wall in Mr. Happy’s office.

  44. Dukeshire says:

    We’ve talked about that before, what I wouldn’t give to watch and learn how the draft is put together from behind the curtain, so to speak.

  45. Thank the lord that your not given precedence.

    Scouts gather round giving their 2 cents and the board is adjusted accordingly. Of coarse Carroll sets his sights early and has a game plan.
    Democracy governed by dictatorship – teamwork at its finest.

  46. Dukeshire says:

    Excile – ignorance is bliss, I hear.

  47. I’d like to see a play made on marshall, then antrel rolle. That would solve branch (maybe trade denvers pick+branch to den for marshall?) Grab up a free agent LT or LG and have him play LG, draft an LT, DE, RB, and maybe shop tatupu or hawthorne for a DT.

  48. hawkforever21 says:

    I’m surprised there’s not more people interested in getting Berry at 6.

    I know we need help on both our lines…..but if you throw Ed Reed II into Seattle’s defense, it makes our needs on the D-line just a little less necessary.

    We have had way too many years of giving up the deep plays due to lack of quality play in the backfield. Our D-line hasn’t helped the last couple of years, but before that we had a decent pass rush, and still gave up a ton of 3rd and longs. It’s been a problem for way too long.

    But a lot of this is going to depend on what they get done in free agency.
    Hopefully they can fill some holes on the O-line specifically, with the money from some big contracts possibly coming available.

  49. Duke:
    “Gerhart 5.58. Dwyer 5.59″ ?

  50. I’d be all for Ed Reed, but he’s not in this draft. Supposedly Berry is an Ed Reed, but I don’t buy it.

  51. Dukeshire says:

    Typo – 4.58 / 4.59 respectively. Thanks.

  52. Duke – NFL network ran a special segment on the Seahawks leading up to the draft just last year. Webster and Ruskell were hashing over, among other things, the CB’s available. I seem to remember Adams being at the top of the safeties on the board. And, if i’m not mistaken, Eric may have been in the room at the time. His pic wasn’t in the upper left corner until recent so I can’t be sure.
    Anyhow, I can’t believe you would have missed that. NFL Net. has been showing the Hawks some airtime luv recent. Our training camp was aired just a couple years ago. Burleson had a little exclusive escorting a camera around the new VMAC facility. Sweet!

  53. Dukeshire says:

    It was a piece on the “war room” at VMAC and how they had the boards and TVs set up. It was Ruskell Webster and other personnel people in the room. Who says I missed it?

  54. Dukeshire says:

    Oh, and Eric was not in the room. It was Will Lewis, Director of Pro Personnel I believe.

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