Seahawks General Manager John Schneider said Friday that he expects running back Marshawn Lynch to retire from football rather than return for another season with the team.
During the same interview with 710 ESPN in Seattle, Schneider said he expects another offensive player who missed much of the season with injury to return to the lineup. The Seahawks can save $9 million under the cap by releasing Graham, who is recovering from a torn patellar tendon suffered during a first season in Seattle that failed to live up to expectations.
Schneider said that Graham will be back with the team and that criticism of Graham was premature.
“I think people were a little hard on Jimmy,” Schneider said, via the Seattle Times. “He started going when our offense started going, so I look at it as just part of our maturation offensively. … I don’t look at it like he wasn’t the Jimmy Graham of old. You are talking about a guy who gets double (teamed) and bracketed all the time.”
Graham’s ability to be part of the continued maturation of the offense will be based on how soon he’s able to return from his knee injury. That answer doesn’t seem to be linked to his immediate future with the team, however.