An NFL source with knowledge of the imminent transaction has confirmed to The News Tribune what Pro Football Talk reported earlier this evening, that the Seahawks will release quarterback Terrelle Pryor when they announce their final cuts to get to the league-mandated 53-man roster for the regular season by 1 p.m. Saturday.
The source requested anonymity because the Seahawks have not announced the move.
It means Pryor will go on league waivers, free for any of the other 31 teams to claim.
A Seahawks spokesman said on Thursday night in Oakland that there will be no announcements on any roster moves until after Saturday afternoon’s deadline.
Later Friday night, Pryor tweeted his Seattle goodbye to confirm the move, too — with class:
Being in Seattle was an amazing experience. Great coaches, tech people , equipment management ! Blessing ! pic.twitter.com/yp678Y8mmg— Terrelle Pryor (@TerrellePryor) August 30, 2014
The move will mean trusted and popular 10-year veteran Tarvaris Jackson will be Russell Wilson’s backup for the second consecutive season.
Jackson has a contract guaranteeing him $1.25 million this season; it ends after this year.
Pryor has one year remaining at a base salary of $705,000 on the four-year deal he signed with the Raiders in 2011. Any team that would claim him off waivers would pick up his contract.
Seattle acquired the former Oakland starter for parts of three seasons ending last fall for a seventh-round draft choice this offseason. Coach Pete Carroll and offensive coordinator Darrell Bevell were intrigued with the 25-year-old former Ohio State star’s athleticism and creativity. But he often lacked accuracy on even the most basic of throws in practices and in four wildly up-and-down exhibition games this month. Bevell had been trying to get him to be more patient finding receivers downfield while scrambling rather than immediately taking off to run.
Tonight’s news comes about 24 hours after the most productive game of his now-failed, four-exhibition trial with the Seahawks. He completed 11 of 17 passes against his former team, including a 33-yard touchdown pass to Phil Bates after Pryor looked off the safety away from that side of the field. That play finished an 87-yard drive in a 2-minute drill during which Pryor looked like an NFL starting quarterback.
But at other times Thursday in Oakland, he looked a long way from one while being unable to make the simple play. On fourth and 3 in Raiders territory in the third quarter, he had Bryan Walters breaking open 5 yards down the middle of the field. He threw it 10.
Carroll was noticeably — and as it turns out, revealingly — blah when I asked him following the game, “What impressed you about Terrelle Pryor’s performance?”
It admittedly was a leading question, yet he didn’t go far at all down the praise route, as he had for most of this month. No specifics, either.
“He made some plays,” Carroll said, flatly and without his usual elaboration. “He battled really hard to give us a chance.”
“It’s not really my decision to really say what I played like. It’s up to the coaches.”
And now they have decided.
The imminent move means the Seahawks are more likely to keep perhaps as many as six wide receivers — it improves Walters’ chances of making the team as a punt returner — or extra offensive of defensive linemen, perhaps guard-center Stephen Schilling or defensive tackle Greg Scruggs.
The Seahawks could still keep three quarterbacks by putting B.J. Daniels on the active roster. But there are more pressing needs for depth at other positions that would preclude them for keeping both Daniels and Jackson behind Wilson.