In the aftermath of the swift and, given the past words of coach Bruce Arians, surprising decision of the Buccaneers to swoop in and to sign free-agent receiver Antonio Brown, a question was posed regarding the potential motivation of the Seahawks for speaking candidly about their interest in Brown.
As explained here, they either did it accidentally or deliberately. And that remains the case. However, there’s a possible reason to deliberately talk about interest in Brown apart from doing it to set up another contending team to take him, and then to potentially have him derail that franchise from the inside out.
Some in league circles wonder whether coach Pete Carroll repeatedly confirmed interest in Brown in the hopes that someone else would sign Brown simply so that the Seahawks wouldn’t have to. With quarterback Russell Wilson speaking in such glowing terms about Brown, it seemed clear that Wilson wanted him on the team. Carroll and G.M. John Schneider may not have wanted to risk adding Brown to the roster, but they also may not have wanted to tell their MVP candidate of a quarterback that they wouldn’t sign him.
By making it known that they were interested, the Seahawks essentially shouted “speak now or forever hold your peace” and waited for someone else to speak for Brown before they could. If so, it worked.
“Now watch them sign someone else or trade for someone,” one source with another team predicted regarding the Seahawks.
That would make sense. Some would say that’s precisely what the Ravens did, pursuing Dez Bryant instead of Brown at a time when Brown’s name was in heavy circulation, and given that Baltimore’s MVP quarterback and their first-round receiver who also is Brown’s cousin made it known they’d like to see him on the roster.