The Seattle Seahawks were able to get some additional salary cap relief this offseason when tight end Zach Miller agreed to take a pay cut for the final two years of his contract to remain with the team.
Miller’s contract was set to cost $7 million against the cap for next season with a base salary of $4.8 million. Under his new deal, Miller will get just $900,000 in base salary with his cap number being reduced to under $4 million.
Miller spoke about his decision to accept a pay cut Tuesday at Safeco Field prior to the Seattle Mariners home opener against the Los Angeles Angels.
“Not really,” Miller said. “When it came down to it I wanted to be here and I just wanted to make that happen. Whatever I had to do to be here, that’s what got done.”
The Seahawks Super Bowl team was being honored before the game with Miller, head coach Pete Carroll, quarterback Russell Wilson, receiver Jermaine Kearse and linebackers Bobby Wagner, K.J. Wright, Mike Morgan and Super Bowl MVP Malcolm Smith all in attendance.
Miller knew he had a large cap number this season and that it was possible he would be asked to restructure his deal.
“I’ve been around long enough that I know the business of the NFL,” Miller said. “It’s something you hear rumors about. You never know until you hear from the horse’s mouth. I’m just happy to be back. Love to be on this team, love playing with these guys. For me, it never was a question of being anywhere else, I wanted to be here.”
The Seahawks have expressed interest in Jermichael Finley this offseason as well and hosted him for a free agent visit last month. However, the interest in Finley may have just been to provide leverage for Seattle in their pursuit of getting Miller to accept a pay cut. Seattle could likely be set at the position now with Miller, Luke Willson and Anthony McCoy under contract.
While Seattle remains nearly $15 million under the salary cap, the pay cut was important to Seattle as the team has looming extensions for safety Earl Thomas and cornerback Richard Sherman possible this offseason, and quarterback Russell Wilson after next season.