Seahawks Insider

Hawks trade Kelly Jennings to Bengals

Post by Eric Williams on Aug. 29, 2011 at 11:45 am with 62 Comments »
August 29, 2011 11:45 am

Wide receiver works to get open agaisnt Kelly Jennings (AP Photo/John Froschauer).

The Seattle Seahawks announced this morning that they have traded cornerback Kelly Jennings to the Cincinnati Bengals for defensive tackle Clinton McDonald.

A first round pick (31st overall) by Seattle in 2006, Jennings played in 78 games with 43 starts, with 200 tackles and 47 passes defensed, including a career-high 13 in 2010.

But overall during his career in Seattle, the 5-foot-11, 180-pound corner had struggled with making plays on the ball, with just two career interceptions in five years.

The Seahawks also appear to be pleased with the overall depth at cornerback, with CFL product Brandon Browner and rookies Richard Sherman and Byron Maxwell all performing well, allowing them to move Jennings.

McDonald was Cincinnati’s seventh-round choice (249th overall) in the 2009 NFL Draft and spent his rookie season on the Bengals practice squad.

He played in eight games in 2010 after being signed to the active roster on November 8 and collected four tackles (one solo).

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Leave a comment Comments → 62
  1. Wow a first rounder for a 7th rounder from the practice squad!!

    Hope thing go better than this.

  2. Dukeshire says:

    McDonald would appear to be another situational DT. I would expect him to be the under tackle, when they do run those sets. But we’ll see.

  3. Obviously Jennings was going to get cut. So they got something for nothing.

  4. Totally agree – use depth to add depth somewhere else – not a bad building plan

  5. Trading Jennings for a ham sandwich would have been a fair swap

  6. SeahawkFan12 says:

    YES! Best of luck, Kelly, but it was time for you to go.

  7. Singularitarian says:

    don’t know much about him but perhaps they want him to be depth backup for big red. he’s about 300 pounds and is supposed to be athletic and quick (4.72 40)maybe just practice squad but I like more depth. Yeah we would have cut jennings anyway

  8. That headline got me excited. I thought we were getting Carson Palmer! Only for a second, of course. Then I realized that trading Jennings would get us, at the most, Carson Palmer’s used bath soap. And even that’s debatable.

  9. let’s see kelly has two degrees coming out of college. He’s collected some first round money. now off to the Bengles. Hopefully cincinnatis colors make him look more forbidding. He’s done well for himself. I”m looking forward to more pickups in the next few days. as teams shed themselves of salary and players. I’m thinking the Hawls will pick up a few good pieces.

  10. Why didn’t the Bengals simply sign him when he was a free agent so he’d have had time to learn their system? It’s not like the Seahawks gave him a great offer (a whopping whole one year). I guess there’s a reason the Bengals are the Bengals (even if they didn’t have to give up much to anything for him).

  11. mojjonation says:

    Hopefully he will be starting of get considerable playing time when we play them. With that in mind, I’d like to see us exploit that matchup for say 3 or 400 yards. OK. We will never get that much with Touchdown Jesus and T-Wack back there, but maybe a better shot at winning the game.

  12. Touchdown Jesus and T-Wack?

    Looks like I’m off to write a buddy comedy. If I make any money I’ll remember you mojjonation.

  13. AaronCurryIsBUST says:

    Great news! Jennings what a bust. 1st round pick for one of the worst cornerbacks in the NFL. After Curry is gone next year there will not be any Ruskell first rounders on the team anymore (Spencer, Jennings, Branch, Jackson)

  14. wabubba67 says:

    Big, athletic defensive tackles are tough to find (even if they might need to be coached up for a few years)…certainly much tougher than 5′ 11″, light in the drawers cornerbacks. I’m just glad that the Seahawks got something, anything, in return for Jennings.

    I’m liking the move to tall, big, young cornerbacks….that said, they will be on the low end of the learning curve this year and there is bound to be some painful moments.

  15. Ewalters7354 says:

    He was gonna get cut anyway.The Bengirls GM is really dumb in the head.The guy was an UNRESTRICTED FREE AGENT who he could have signed for cheap and he decides to trade for him.Smh…hopefully this guy can be good for us.Another guy with unique qualities that Pete is looking for.

  16. It took quite awhile for Red Bryant to grow into the position too. So this guy has upside. Great move.

  17. chuck_easton says:


    Now what do I do with my Kelly Jennings jersey BobbyK? :)

    Solves one big problem. Jennings wasn’t going to get cut but he wasn’t exactly a ‘fan favorite’ (Captain Obvious makes an appearance). At best Jennings was going to be the 4th or 5th CB on our squad.

    Bengals could have signed him in FA but instead we get a body. How much do you want to bet that the Bengals blogs are all talking about how they got a 1st round draft choice DB for some DL guy that wasn’t going to make their squad.

    Some people’s trash is other people’s treasure.

  18. and all the little Hawks in Hawkville cheered

  19. GriffinNW says:

    All of my friends and I laughed and jokingly cheered when I read the headline while we drive home from a camp trip.
    Jennings, a smurf. Hopefully Pete and company can get something out of this D Line guy, but if not, I’m not bummed on this trade.

  20. ryanryan says:

    From, “Even while a member of the practice squad, McDonald would greet the team bus at Paul Brow Stadium when the Bengals returned from road games – regardless of the time or weather conditions.

    “I kind of felt like I was part of the team even if I didn’t travel and (wasn’t) at the games,” he said. “I felt I put in as much work with the D-line that week that I meet my soldiers when they came back. It was kind of like an encouragement thing. OK, ‘Go get them next time’; or, ‘Congratulations on a good job well done.’ I think guys appreciated it.”

    I like his attitude at least…we’ll see if he makes the team. I gues if he doesnt’ at least we got rid of nelly jennings.

  21. SandpointHawk says:

    Mike Brown strikes again….

  22. ryanryan says:


    “The Bengals were high on McDonald, a seventh-round pick in 2009 out of Memphis who had worked into the rotation at tackle. But with the return of tackle Pat Sims to practice for the first time this year on Sunday, there had been a severe numbers crunch on the defensive front if they decide to keep the traditional eight linemen.”

    Also from – “Jennings has a rep as being a solid team player, but he was seen as undersized in Pete Carroll’s regime that replaced the one that drafted him. Even so, Seattle signed him to a one-year, $1.8 million deal this past offseason with a $200,000 signing bonus. The Bengals pick up his salary.”

    yeah – maybe a ‘solid’ 5th team player…lol

  23. wabubba67 says:

    Eric–Is there any chance the Seahawks would bring in C Andre Gurode? The Cowboys just cut the Pro Bowl center (last five seasons), and while on the wrong side of 30 (he’s 33), there is nothing like a veteran center to settle down and solidify a young offensive line.

    If they made this move, it would also allow Unger to battle it out with Moffitt at RG (always comPete, right?) while possibly learning how to be a future center from one of the best at the game. Seahawks have brought in aging center before with great success….Blair Bush and Robbie Tobeck.

  24. ryanryan says:

    no chance wabubba – they’re going to let them learn together, t-jack and whitehurst are chum.

  25. mojjonation says:

    Chum? Man. Now that’s sending the tuna out to play with the sharks with nothing but blood in the water. CW #6 starting by game 5.

  26. wabubba – there are some players, like our QB, who are so good that they don’t actually have to “comPete” for positions. :)

    Hey, chuck, wearing an old Jennings jersey is almost like wearing the retro Largent. :)

  27. AaronCurryIsBUST says:

    I’m a Gurode fan but IMO Unger and Moffitt haven’t been a glaring problem, it’s mostly been Carpenter’s struggles.

  28. “wearing an old Jennings jersey is almost like wearing the retro Largent”

    Yeah, maybe if it shrunk in the dryer and both numbers fell off.

  29. wabubba67 says:

    I don’t think it is likely to happen, either. I just like the idea of having talented depth on the offensive line (Unger backing up the three inside positions) while acquiring possibly the top center in the NFL to help the young guys with their assignments.

  30. ChrisHolmes says:

    I was not looking forward to watching Jennings get burned for big play after big play this year, so this is welcome. Really, I just didn’t want the guy on the final roster. The fact that we got a DT in exchange, whether he ends up on the PS, as depth, or just cut, doens’t bother me.

  31. jacobhawkr says:

    Think the front office made the trade to Cincy to open communications for someone else? Get them talking, do a small deal which everyone likes, then all the good feelings roll into some sort of bigger trade? Just a thought.

  32. “Think the front office made the trade to Cincy to open communications for someone else?…”

    They better get on that because it’s only a matter of time before Jennings gets beat like a rented mule…no more good feelings after that.

  33. Audible,
    I have an official 1976 Largent jersey that I bought at Nordstrum’s that is so old that it does not have Largents name on the back or numbers on the shoulders , just #80 on the front and back!

  34. chuck_easton says:

    Being reported on some unofficial sites as to who the guys cut are:

    WR Chris Carter, CB Jesse Hoffman, LB Neal Howey, G Zach Hurd, WR Brandon Smith, FB Ryan Travis, DT Teryl White & WR Patrick Williams

    Only 8 names. Still a couple more to be added.

  35. Nice post Chuck,
    It’s Official on

  36. AaronCurryIsBUST says:

    I wanted Hoffman to stay because white CB! And I really thought Hurd was a diamond in the rough, loved him at UConn, turned a scrub like Donald Brown into a productive rusher.

  37. The best center in the game last season was Matt Birk playing for BAL. He’s 35. NYJ’s 27 yo Nick Mangold was the 2nd best overall performing C, HOU’s 30 yo Chris Mayers was the 3rd best, IND’s 36 yo C Jeff Saturday was next, JAX’s 34 yo Brad Meester’s next, then DAL’s 33 yo Andre Gurode ranked 6th. In ’09 Gurode ranked 12th in overall center performance and 19th in ’08. Playing in 3 games at center in ’09, Unger ranked 35th overall.

  38. Dukeshire says:

    How are you ranking these players?

  39. freedom_X says:

    As far as Cincinnati is concerned – what will make things interesting is if Carson Palmer suddenly reports to camp in the next two weeks (he hasn’t filed his papers yet.) Would the Bengals embrace him as their starter, or would they groan about paying his $11 million salary and want to move him elsewhere?

    I was on the fence with the scenario – originally, I thought the Bengals had moved on and would want to dump Palmer, but the more I think about it, the more I feel that the Bengals would keep him and re-install him as starter.

    Regardless, if it takes high picks to get Palmer, I would oppose that strongly. Seattle has to keep its 2012 draft options as wide open as possible. No 2012 picks must be spent.

  40. seahawk44 says:

    Wabubba67……I love the idea if he signs for one year. Bring in Gurode. Although it might me a little counter productive for the future, Gurode might be a stabilizing pc on the line and instantly improves depth on case of injury.

    Osbrey…….I have that same jersey in the same condition. But I think mine came from JC Penney in 1979. I wish it still fit me.

  41. MauMau says:

    August 29, 2011 at 12:48 pm

    and all the little Hawks in Hawkville cheered

    that was funny…

  42. RussellHawk says:

    McDonald, a seventh-round pick in 2009, was having a great preseason as he was tied for second on the team in tackles with 10. With the Bengals having depth at defensive tackle it was hard to see how Geno Atkins, Pat Sims and McDonald could all get the right amount of snaps

  43. RussellHawk says:

    (above)-A quote from a Bengals paper,

  44. williambryan says:

    One of my favorite parts about this blog is klm008 posting some kind of stats/grades, and dukeshire being appalled/dumbfounded about said stats/grades lol. But I also put little stock in stats. At somepoint its all we have to go on (to create opinions of guys we don’t get to watch) but I prefer to trust my eyes when assessing players whenever possible (watching them on tv/on line)

  45. If Jackson is our QB, then this season really doesn’t matter with respect to making a run at all the marbles, so who really cares if we bring in an old offensive lineman to help for this year (even if he’s still good)? Let the young bucks get their feet wet and grow together (which is long term thinking) so our 1st round pick next year can have that benefit. And with Jackson starting, we’re going to have a good pick.

  46. Seahawk44,
    I bought my jersey 80 LBS ago!

  47. TJack is the most immobile mobile QB I have ever seen.

  48. RussellHawk says:

    If mobile means five step duck,,,yeah he’s mobile!!!!,,,It’s so hit and miss with that guy and more miss,,,It’s not his skill set it’s his thinking,,,response time,Etc etc

  49. My point is that he’s supposed to be fleet of foot but he seems less mobile than Matt H. He’s more likely to step into the pass rush than to make the rusher miss.

  50. RussellHawk says:

    Good point!

  51. Helenahawk says:

    Tim Ruskell just snorted his drink out through his nose when he read this trade. “Da@# there goes another!”

  52. Dukeshire says:

    williambryan – Lol. That was a good laugh, I needed that. Thanks.

  53. Southendzone says:

    Loved the AP story that said something like “Jennings had trouble covering taller WR’s”

    Does it matter how tall a WR is if you play as if your neck is fused into place and you never once turn back to see when the ball is coming? Sorry KJ, I bet you’re a super nice person but you were not a good CB for the Hawks.

  54. OMG What took so long? Actually, how did they find someone who would take him?

  55. There is NO connection between a Kelly Jennings jersey and anything Steve Largent!!

  56. Actually, both played for the Seattle Seahawks. Try again. Just because Carl Pavano “played” for the Yankees, even though he sucked, doesn’t erase the fact that he played for the same organization as Babe Ruth.

  57. freedom_X says:

    Sorry, Aaron Curry and Golden Tate, you’re the only whipping boys left for the peanut gallery now.

  58. What about TJ? He’s being flogged constantly.

  59. Considering I knew TJ sucked before Curry(09)/Tate(10) entered the NFL, I’m not giving him a free pass either.

  60. I think that Gallery and Carpenter will be on that whipping list if they don’t improve their play very soon

    oh – how about the whole DL if they can’t get any pressure on the QB!

  61. Sarcasticus says:

    I would have been happy if it had been for a bowl of chili.

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