Russell Okung’s agent has one fewer possible destination for his client.
With the Steelers signing tackle Ryan Harris to a two-year deal, they’re out of the running for Okung, per a source with knowledge of the situation.
Okung had visited with, and received offers from, the Steelers, Giants, and Lions. The Seahawks also remain interested.
The problem, as we hear it, is three-fold. Okung views himself as meriting a deal in the range of $11 million to $13 million per year. Also, teams who have made offers aren’t going to leave them open indefinitely; because Okung isn’t an expert when it comes to negotiating NFL contracts, he doesn’t appreciate the importance of moving at the right time. Finally, he’s still recovering from shoulder surgery, which complicates the entire situation even further.
Ultimately, his best move will be to sign a one-year deal in the situation that makes him best suited to earning a major long-term deal in a new city of elsewhere come 2017. By the time he comes to that conclusion, there may be no good options left.
And so the end result in this foray into self-representation will entail something more than comparing what Okung gets on his own to 97 percent of what he could have gotten with help. The real question is whether Okung does a deal in 2016 that sets himself up for the right deal in 2017.
Meanwhile, the clock keeps ticking. With the Giants kicking tires on Donald Penn, there may be only two choices left for Okung. If/when the Lions sign a tackle, his only viable option may be to take what he can get in Seattle.
Okung has another viable option: Hire a good and experienced agent to help him identify the best move, both for the short term and the long haul, and to maximize his earnings under his next contract. With Okung so heavily invested in his very public decision to go it alone, that’s not likely to happen.