Seahawks Insider

Morning links: Baldwin a Colt? Don’t bet on it

Post by Eric Williams on March 18, 2013 at 11:58 am with 48 Comments »
March 18, 2013 11:58 am
Seattle Seahawks San Francisco 49ers in the second half of an NFL football game, Sunday, Dec. 23, 2012, in Seattle. (AP Photo/Elaine Thompson)
Seattle Seahawks San Francisco 49ers in the second half of an NFL football game, Sunday, Dec. 23, 2012, in Seattle. (AP Photo/Elaine Thompson)

Indianapolis Colts owner Jim Irsay created a minor stir on Twitter last week with the following tweet.

He followed it up with this tweet a little later.

Mike Chappell of the Indianapolis Star attempted to connect the dots, listing restricted free agent Victor Cruz, Arizona’s Larry Fitzgerald, Miami’s Devone Bess and Seattle’s Doug Baldwin as potential targets of the Colts.

Irsay later told reporters at the NFL owners meetings down in Arizona that the receiver his team is targeting is not Cruz.

The connection for Baldwin and the Colts are obvious, with former Stanford teammate Andrew luck and ex-Cardinal offensive coordinator Pep Hamilton now leading the offense in Indianapolis.

Coincidentally, Baldwin was at Stanford working out with Luck and other former Stanford teammates now in the NFL when the rumor broke, and helped to squash any more speculation via twitter.

While I do not believe Baldwin will be shipped to Indianapolis, I do not think it’s out of the realm of possibility for the Stanford receiver to be traded to another team.

Baldwin is a valuable commodity as a slot receiver who proved during his rookie season that he can be productive if given the opportunity. But right now, the Seahawks have committed long term to Percy Harvin as the team’s slot receiver, making Baldwin expendable.

The Seahawks are likely looking to recoup the 2014 third round pick the team gave up to get Percy Harvin. Yes, I don’t think Seattle would get a third round pick back in return for Baldwin, but perhaps a conditional fifth rounder that could increase with performance incentives met.

Yes, I understand that Baldwin is heading into the final year of his rookie deal, is inexpensive and will be a restricted free agent (and therefore under Seattle’s control) at the end of 2013. But that’s part of the reason other teams would be interested.

Also, it benefits Baldwin to go to a place where he can get more of an opportunity to put up decent stats, so he can command more money when he hits free agency. In Indianapolis, Reggie Wayne and T.Y. Hilton have been used predominantly as the team’s slot receivers. But Baldwin already has some chemistry with his former quarterback at Stanford, and could become to Luck what Brandon Stokley has been for Peyton Manning throughout his career.

Lastly, while not as good as Baldwin, the Seahawks have answers behind Harvin at slot receiver in case he gets injured. Golden Tate, Jermaine Kearse and Charly Martin all has spent time in the slot. Deon Butler and Ben Obomanu are both available free agents, know Seattle’s scheme and can serve as competent, inexpensive fill-ins.

And there’s several talented slot receivers available in this year’s draft, who if selected would be locked into inexpensive, four year deals. They include Texas A&M’s Ryan Swope, Louisiana Tech’s Quinton Patton, Oregon State’s Markus Wheaton, USC’s Robert Woods, Marquise Goodwin of Texas and West Virginia’s Tavon Austin and Stedman Bailey.

Charles Davis and Daniel Jeremiah of the NFL Network review some of the slot receivers available in the draft in this video link.

Brian McIntyre of Yahoo Sports takes a closer look at Cliff Avril’s two-year deal with Seattle. McIntyre: “According to a source with knowledge of the contract details, Avril’s deal in Seattle is actually worth $13 million, with $11 million in guaranteed money and a little over $2 million available in incentives and escalators.”

Peter King of Sports Illustrated says the NFC West has emerged as a powerhouse after the first week of free agency. King also expects compensatory picks to be announced today.

Nate Davis of USA Today gives Seattle an A grade for the team’s efforts so far in free agency.

Former Seattle offensive tackle Tyler Polumbus re-signed with Washington for two more years.

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Leave a comment Comments → 48
  1. SeahawkFan12 says:

    Irsay is an a$$. Plain and simple. And he once again shows it here.

  2. Macabrevity says:

    Would be a shame to see Baldwin go anywhere, but there is definitely a stockpile of would-be pass-catchers at least on paper, with everyone healthy. If it was up to me, I’d rather have extra depth on the O and D lines, and not worry too much about who the back up slot is. With all the targets we have available, I don’t think a sprained ankle here and a migraine there will necessarily derail our passing game. One thing that does have me interested is the idea of a 4-wide, 1-TE set and how tough that would be to defend. RW could do pre-snap reads all day with that formation, audible to a read option with Percy motioning back, or drop back with 6 blockers and 4 wide, find the man coverage, etc. etc. should feel like a free play at times.

  3. Eric–Excellent reasoning on why Baldwin is likely to be shopped and/or traded. I hate the idea, but it makes sense.

    And Baldwin deserves to be starting in the NFL, at least as the third WR/slot guy. Hell, plenty of teams would see him as an upgrade at FL. He’s a solid, hard-working guy with a lot of talent and the drive to succeed long-term. ANd you know he doesnt want to be riding the pine. Perhaps it would be better for Doug Baldwin to be traded away. Not that I like that idea at all, SamIam…

    Still, he’s cheap and can play multiple positions and has proven his toughness, if not durability. And Carrol and Bevell seem to be determined to move Harvin around, not just keep him in the slot. I think they want to use Harvin and Tate and perhaps Baldwin interchangeably, in order to maximize matchups. I think keeping Baldwin could be an awesome proposition.

    And who knows? If we keep him and it works out, he may outlast Rice on the team.

    Regardless, Baldwin is one of my favorite players and I wish him the best. Preferably in a Hawks uniform, but honestly, I just want the guy to have a chance to start.

  4. By the way, Eric, that is an AWESOME picture of Baldwin..thanks for showing it to us! Youre the BOSS!

  5. Singularitarian says:

    I just can’t see Baldwin going anywhere for a low pick. i think there are definitely packages where his proven skills can be used this year. if a team shoots us a 3rd, maybe. If they draft Swope in round 2, maybe. Outside of that I think he’s too good this year to let walk, givin his contract.

  6. Singularitarian says:

    I can Imagine too many 4 and 5 wide sets where Balwin gets 4th rate coverage

  7. montanamike2 says:

    We need to keep Baldwin and he’s on the cheap.

  8. chrisj122 says:

    Balwin is very good when utilized correctly, plus he has great hands.
    I would really hate to lose him!

    Besides Hawk fans know all to well how important depth is at this position, lets not have a repeat of a few years ago.

  9. Yeah. Trading Baldwin for a low round pick when he has two cheap years remaining makes no sense. He is a good, young, cheap player – which is what you hope for with a low round pick, but usually come up short on. If I were Irsay, I’d offer a 5th for Baldwin and laugh if I got him.

  10. surelyyoujest says:

    Doesn’t make any sense to me to trade DB. Why cough him up for a low draft pick only to use a higher draft pick to find his replacement. We need to be 5 deep at receiver as injuries will happen. The reasons he would be looking good to other Teams should be the same reasons he’s looking good to us. It isn’t a problem for Pete to have a starting quality 4th receiver. It’s only a problem for DB.

    The only reason I can think of to trade him is if someone will grossly overpay for him.

  11. Thanks for the reminder chrisj. It wasn’t too long ago when the Hawks had nearly every receiver hurt. A strong bench is a must. However, Doug Baldwin has been a class act and deserves a chance to get more touches. If he leaves via trade, I’ll continue to follow his career and root for him unless his team is playing the Seahawks.

    What an embarrassment of riches…

  12. Right now SEA lists 11 guys on their roster, including UFA D.Butler and Obo (cut). Some guys listed there that haven’t heard much about are rookie Phil Bates, Bryan Walters and tall guy Stephen Williams (6-5/208)? Just camp fodder or??? If Tate plays mostly split end, Rice flanker, and Harvin the slot, I’d sooner keep Baldwin in the mix than trade him. If Harvin is our KR/PR guy, the 4th WR is gonna see some time on the field.

  13. Besides, don’t we play IND at their place this season?

  14. Brandon Lloyd was cut by NE and he played really well for them last season. Maybe Irsay can get him cheap?

  15. jawpeace says:

    Eric most of the time I can find something to agree on with you in an article. But I got to say this idea is stupid on so many levels I can’t believe you would entertain it.
    1. Baldwin has more value than an unknown draft pick. He is a proven commodity. A fourth or even a third rounder WR. would not compare or even offer more upside than Baldwin.
    2. P.C. even said this years drafts picks are going to have a hard time making this team. So he is obviously happy with the talent we possess. It would be foolish to trade Baldwin for a draft pick who isn’t even likely to make the team.
    3. Rice, Harvin, have not been the poster child for healthy. Tate is always contorting his body weird ways to escape a tackle and that puts him at higher risk. The NFL hard hitting is enough to make a WR miss a game or two. I much rather have proven Baldwin filling for any injured players compared to what else we have. And if anyone misses significant time the drop off to Baldwin is small.
    4. Four Wide out sets, I say the Hawks have one of the best if not the best top four in the game. If Russel get time somebody is going to get open. Why deplete a potent weapon by removing a piece?
    5. Baldwin is low cost. What he is making compared to how he can produce when healthy is disproportionate. Why give up a low cost high producing player?
    6. Baldwin is going to be a restricted free agent after this season. Restricted free agents give the Hawks an advantage. Compared to someone who is a total free agent. The restricted tag gives the Hawks power to match if the market is low. Also a sign a trade option is still on the table. If he stays healthy all season his value will go up as last year was filled with small injuries that kept him from performing as good as he normally does.
    I am stopping here got to go eat lunch. But Mr. Williams I think you really missed the boat here, by taking a the Hawks should trade Baldwin stance.

  16. yankinta says:

    I was never an Andrew Luck buyer from Day One. He will be an average or slightly above average NFL Starter. He will not be a great QB like everyone at ESPN is hyping him up to be.

    He will NOT be in the top 10, in Passer Rating or QBR rating in 2014!! Mark my words….

  17. I dont think Eric was beating the Trade Baldwin drum, just stating why it MIGHT make sense for Seattle to trade him. And he has some excellent reasoning. I just dont like it, since Im a big fan of Baldwins, and I am also gunshy about WR injury-bugs, for obvious reasons. But dont be dogging on Eric (or put words in his mouth), the man makes a lot of sense.

  18. yankinta–Well, Luck would have alot better chance of making top-10 stats if he had Doug Baldwin as an additional weapon…thats for sure!

  19. PFT is “reporting” that Matt Hasselbeck is out in Tennessee. Hah! Trade Flynn and bring in Hass for less money?! I sure wouldnt mind, much as I like Flynn, Hasselbeck is just a favorite of mine.

    And I dont care if it makes any sense, so button it! I can dream, right?!

  20. I don’t think that’s as ridiculous as some people may thing. I, for one, would love to have Hass back. There’s tremendous upside to him mentoring Russell.

  21. As much as i love Hass and would love for him to mentor RW, that is all i’d want. A mentor, like RW has in Warren Moon. I wouldn’t like him to be here for a backup..IF RW goes down, Hass would not get us to where we want to go.

  22. One things for sure, Hass never had a WR corps like Rice, Tate, Harvin, Baldwin (to say nothing of back tandem like Lynch/Turbin), not even in his dreams! IF the line could pass pro, and the D played tough, he could take us deep in the playoffs for sure. That is, if he didnt get his usual 10 injuries along the way…

  23. Now all bets are off with respect to “having” to keep Flynn. Bring back Matt! Although this is clearly Wilson’s team – he could still learn from the grizzled vet. Wilson would clearly pick Matt’s brain because he’s a smart kid. I’d love nothing more than to draft a project future back-up for Wilson in the later rounds and for Hasselbeck to come back to where he belongs.

  24. wazzulander says:

    I think we definitely need to keep Baldwin and Flynn for depth. Injuries are a fact of life in the NFL and we were pretty fortunate last year, but there are no guarantees we will be so lucky again. Why risk hamstringing a loaded team and jeopardize our chances at a deep trip in the postseason for a couple extra mid-round draft picks?

  25. yankinta says:

    STTBM, I started predicting that right after Luck’s last year at Stanford days… I watched all his games to see what the hype was about but didn’t see anything special.

    Andrew Luck will never be Top 10 in NFL QB rating or QBR. He’s all hype. Last year Colts had one of the easiest schedule and that’s why they won all those games. I will be surprised if he is in the Top 15 anything this year, since Colts have to play NFC West.

  26. yankinta says:

    I’m sure a lot of teams are offering 4th round picks or less for Flynn (Jets, Jaguars, Bills, Raiders)

    I seriously doubt if JS/PC will trade him for anything less than 3rd round pick + 2014 conditional pick.

  27. yankinta–I havent watched enough of Luck in college or the pros to form a surefire opinion on him. I do think he’s overrated, but I saw him do some pretty incredible things for a rookie qb.

    I agree that the biggest reason for the Colts success last year was their soft schedule, which no one in the media EVER mentions (why let a few facts get in the way of a feel-good story?!), but Im not going to say Luck will never be a top-10 qb.

    This will be a big year for him, and his Colts team and coaching staff. Im predicting 7-9 though I expect him to throw less picks.

  28. GeorgiaHawk says:

    Agree jawpeace.

    Agree BobbyK.

    Could the Seahawks really be the model for the NFL of the future on offense and defense?

    http://sports.yahoo.com/blogs/nfl-shutdown-corner/cosell-seahawks-set-tone-nfl-free-agency-181559870–nfl.html

  29. Southendzone says:

    Definitely bring back Hass, I want to see him run the read-option!

    Remember the play vs WA when RW outran everyone down the field to make a block ahead of Lynch? If Matt was our QB, he would still be running to try and get downfield to that block.

  30. tealskin says:

    I’d be very surprised if there are any offers like that for Flynn. The way I see it, trading Flynn and buying Hass would be a wash moneywise. Think I’d rather have a weak-armed Flynn than a weaker-armed Hass. At least Flynn can move around a bit.

  31. GeorgiaHawk says:

    Southendzone, obviously you never saw the game where Hasselbeck took out two defenders on a block.

  32. yankinta says:

    It’d be NAIVE to think we have not received any offers for Flynn.

    In fact, JS said it in an interview last month that Teams were already inquiring about Flynn. JS said “We don’t have to trade Flynn because we’re in a really good place with our QB’s, but we will listen to everyone and everything.”

    Charlie Whitehurst got multiples offers 3 years ago, Trust me we received offers for Flynn. JS is the MAN for waiting for a much better offer. :)

  33. RDPoulsbo says:

    Besides all the issues already mentioned, Rice and Harvin both have injury histories. Chances are, he’ll still have a good amount of playing time. Draft a potential #4 for the future, but there isn’t any sense trading him.

    I’m all for bringing Matt back onboard. It’s a good time to also draft a late round QB to be a project.

  34. trout_hound says:

    Read that Cosell article earlier, Georgia. Really insightful stuff on what the spinning wheels inside Pete Carroll’s head might be dreaming up. Makes me proud to be a Hawk fan. One thing is for sure, our team will have a giant target on its back this fall. Hope we can deliver to outpace the hype.

  35. chrisj122 says:

    I’m as big of fan as anyone when it comes to Hasselback, I argued for years how great he is but I just don’t think it’s a good fit even as a backup.

    Although it would be great to see what he could do with an elite group of receivers.

  36. trout_hound says:

    If I’m Matt H, I sign on as a backup somewhere unless my old bones are too beat up to play another year. Football is too much fun and too well compensated. I’m pretty sure he could win the starting job in Arizona or Jacksonville, unless they draft Barkley. While at one time he was my favorite Hawk, he’s a one-year rental at best as a backup. Not sure how I would feel about getting him back. I really doubt Pete would do that. They need someone more mobile, unless they finally fix those gaping holes in our pass protection. Would be funny to see him signed by the 49ers as their backup. Well, not so funny, really.
    I can’t wait to see him as a commentator though – the dude is smart and hilarious.

  37. WilliamPercival says:

    Mid to high 3rd.

    That’s what I would take for DBFresh or Flynn. If, and ONLY if FO feels there’s plug and play talent to be had into our starting lineup.

    If we did trade either player, I would love to see Matt and/or Obo signed back at bargains for depth. Always loved Hass. I’ll never forget ALL THE HATE Hawks fans were flippin’ just before the Saints Playoff game in 2010. Yes he was struggling in the many weeks (season leading up) It was everywhere and what did #8 do??? Solidified his place in the Ring of Honor that night. Yes, he outplayed the reigning world champs that night. Epic.

    I must say I’m hopeful they don’t trade DB tho. Heck of an athlete, hard worker and extremely versatile. Fan fave of course too.

  38. The “We want the ball and we’re gonna score” quote was all about what a competitor Hass is, and the pick-6 was all about his thinking it was all up to him to make a play when there really wasn’t one to be made at the time. I love/hate Hass and would love for him to take over for Salk with Brock, but not so sure he has the temperment to be a good backup.

  39. raymaines says:

    The pick-6 was all about Joe Jurevicius running the wrong route.

  40. sluggo42 says:

    Are you guys insane? Matty is older than dirt, in fact, he farts dust! Never in a million years will he be a hawk again, he needs to hang it up while he can still speak two-syllable words without drooling all over himself.

    Probably my favorite ex- hawk of all time, don’t ruin it with a Brett farvreeuhh finish. Do you really want to see him sending picture texts of his junk to Hanna storm? C’mon…

  41. Is that what happened Raymaines? I’d never heard that before! I’d always wondered about whether Green Bays DB jumped the route, or errant throw, or??? There had always been lotsa talk about Matt’s WRs not running the right routes after Holmgren left. Matt got rid of the ball PDQ. That was what I’d wondered about Matt’s picks – given that he threw just before the WR was s’posed to make his cut and Matt had assumed they knew what they were supposed to do from observing what the D was doing at the LOS just before the snap. Like a look of recognition had passed between them – MH & the WR – prior to the snap, but it actually hadn’t. Pick 6. Int. Incomplete. Frustrating.

  42. “like RW has in Warren Moon” – Oh dear god please NO!!! I want a mentor that respects other people and doesn’t get arrested!

  43. I wouldn’t take less then a 2nd round for DB, & I’d think twice about that. Apparently he’s under rated.

  44. bbnate420 says:

    raymaines, WTF are you talking about? It was Alex Bannister he was throwing to. Jurevicius wasn’t even on the team in 2003.

    Funny, sluggo.

    There’s not likely to be a ton of money saved by bringing in Hass for Flynn, so it would be about what pick you could get.

    Yankinta, how would it be naive to think they haven’t received received any offers for Flynn? What proof do you have that they have? I haven’t seen anyone argue that they haven’t received ANY offers anyways, so it’s just a straw man argument. People are saying they haven’t received any GOOD offers for Flynn. Get over yourself. BTW, INQUIRIES and OFFERS are not synonymous. And that’s assuming that JS wasn’t putting misinformation out there.

  45. raymaines says:

    Nate, You’re right, it was Alex Bannister. Still a wrong route though.

  46. klm–It was Alex Bannister, and he ran an out-and-up, instead of an out route, but the thing is; The Hawks ran the out all day, and the out and up, and every time they ran the out, Harris the CB sat back and let them complete the out. I saw this by the beginning of the second quarter, and warned my family that Harris was letting Hass complete those, hoping to jump the route late in the game if the score was close.

    When that play happened in OT, I saw exactly what was going to happen–and it wouldnt have mattered ONE BIT if Bannister had run the right route (an out), Harris was all set to jump the route and take it to the house–and when Hass turned his head towards Bannister I yelled OH F%^%^% and shut the TV off–before he even released the ball. My family was yelling at me asking why I turned it off, what happened etc; I said, “Harris jumped the out route like I told you he’d do, pick six TD”. They turned the TV on, and Harris was at the five and running it in….

    Harris baited Hass, and to this day I cannot believe Holmgren and his OC didnt notice that Harris was deliberately laying off the out route in order to jump in late in the game. I couldnt believe Holmy called the out route in OT, esp since they’d ran that play so many times that day, and its a hell of a dangerous throw for a noodle armed qb to make.

    Plenty of blame to go around, but Bannister is actually the one least responsible. Most of the blame should go on Hass and Holmy for not noticing something I saw in the second quarter. Im just a fan who played HS football, I Cant even diagram the diff b/w the 4-3 Under and the 4-3 Over, no way they should have missed what I saw…but they did.

  47. bbnate420, you still have a lot to learn. :)

  48. raymaines says:

    STTBM: That adds a lot to my understanding of the play. Thanks. I worship #8 and it’s hard for me to admit he ever did anything wrong, but maybe just that once he might have been just an itsy bitsy bit over confident.

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