Reports are strongly suggesting the Seahawks are after Texans LT Duane Brown, but it may take a mighty fortress of goods to acquire him – a mighty fortress that may be worth parting with.
According to Benjamin Allbright, a Colorado radio host, the Seahawks have interest in the former first-round pick.
And the rumor is gaining steam:
The Seahawks have endured a dark void at left tackle ever since Russell Okung departed via free agency in 2016. When Max Unger was traded for Saints pass-catching monster Jimmy Graham, Seattle basically declared the OL would be just fine under Tom Cable and his gaggle of raw, fleet-footed linemen.
But that never materialized. Instead, the team’s line deteriorated year after year until it was one of the worst in the league. Although it has seen marked improvement so far this season, there is still much room to grow.
That’s where the Texans LT enters the conversation.
Brown would probably welcome a change of scenery if it means more money. He has been holding out for some time, and has yet to play a down this year.
But the Seahawks pocketbook is not exactly overflowing. They currently have about $3,049,787 in cap room according to Spotrac; Not nearly enough to attract a top-tier tackle.
However, there is a solution that could benefit both the Texans and the Seahawks. Think about this: Graham costs $9m to roster for this season, and that price tag is fully refundable. Trading the gargantuan dynamo to the Texans could make the deal both palatable and attractive for both sides.
Parting with 88 is not an easy proposition. He just had his best game against the Rams, totaling six receptions for 37 yards and a touchdown (an actual Touchdown!). He also played the vast majority of his snaps in a WR-capacity. Lining up outside the numbers was good to Graham in New Orleans, and the switch could mean a significant upgrade to his stats as the season moves along.
But when it comes to trades, you have to give something to get something, and Graham is worth giving up for Brown on paper. In 2015, when Graham was lost for the year with a tear in his patellar tendon, the passing game was more prolific than ever (see: chart below). There’s little evidence the offense would be hindered much if Graham were to exit.
With the addition of Brown, however, the team can use creativity drawing up run plays, and Russell Wilson can just focus on being Russell. The experience Brown would add, alongside Luke Joeckel at LG and Justin Britt at C, would be imposing. Suddenly, defensive coordinators would have to give pause when assembling game plans against Seattle’s five-man front.
And GM John Schneider would likely give Brown a nice contract extension, to boot. Wilson would be getting an elite blindside-protector for years to come. Graham, on the other hand, could well walk out the door when his contract expires next March.
Whether or not the trade happens, there is no denying the Seahawks biggest need is left tackle and it’s not close. Trading for Brown could significantly improve Seattle’s chances at another championship, even if losing Graham is requisite to making it happen.