On Saturday, we brought you word that defensive end Chris Clemons has rejected a contract offer from the Seahawks in hopes of becoming an unrestricted free agent next year.
On Sunday, we bring you another report that says things aren’t quite that dire in Seattle. Eric Williams of the Tacoma News Tribune reports that the Seahawks have not received a formal rejection of their offer, although one wonders what need there is for formality when you simply refuse to sign the contract put in front of you. More importantly, Williams also reports the two sides are still talking about a contract.
The initial report, from Len Pasquarelli of the Sports Xchange, had Clemons turning up his nose at a three-year contract that would pay him $8 million in 2012, $4.5 million in 2013, and $5.5 million in 2014. That averages out to a million less per year than the Seahawks gave defensive end Red Bryant this offseason. Clemons is due to make $4 million this season and he has 11 sacks in each of the last two seasons, which made him the Seahawks’ most effective pass rusher both years.
While it isn’t unthinkable that Clemons would reject that offer, it is hard to accept that his rationale was based on becoming an unrestricted free agent after this season. If Clemons has another strong year, the Seahawks would probably use the franchise tag to keep him from leaving the team. If he doesn’t, they’ll likely let him walk and Clemons will have a hard time getting a team to agree to pay him the amount he has reportedly turned down from the Seahawks.