Thursday, March 15, 2012
Chat wrap: Ready for dominoes to fall
By Mike Sando
The first wave of free agency has passed. Now, we wait for the quarterback market to shake out. Peyton Manning, Kevin Kolb, Matt Flynn and Alex Smith have much at stake. So does the NFC West.
Their situations made for good conversation in the latest NFC West chat. Transcript here. Highlights below:
Ryan from Lake Stevens, Wash., asks whether the Seahawks will make an offer to Matt Flynn. He also wonders what else they'll pursue now that Mario Williams has reached agreement with Buffalo.
Mike Sando: The Seahawks never showed interest in Mario Williams. He was not a priority for them. His signing in Buffalo has no impact on how Seattle proceeds in free agency. I do think the Seahawks will make an offer to Flynn. It will be a modest offer, most likely, probably for not much more than Tarvaris Jackson is making. We'll then find out how much Flynn wants to be in Seattle, and what market exists for him elsewhere. I don't think there's a huge market for him. Perhaps that changes if Peyton Manning goes somewhere other than Miami, which seems likely.
Mackay from Utah thinks the Cardinals will "lose out big-time" in free agency if they fail to sign Peyton Manning. He thinks they'll be worse off given the players they have lost.
Mike Sando: The Cardinals earned universal praise for their wheeling and dealing in free agency one year ago. They then went 1-6. And when they did win, they won because their first-round pick, Patrick Peterson, was huge in the return game. They won without Kevin Kolb, their biggest veteran acquisition. I agree that much hinges on Manning, but it is tough to say what they would have accomplished this week if they were not waiting for Manning. I would not assume they would have made season-altering moves in free agency.
Roland from Winnipeg asks whether the Rams need for a wide receiver would justify pursuing Mike Wallace from the Pittsburgh Steelers given that Justin Blackmon might not be there at the No. 6 spot in the draft.
Mike Sando: They probably would not part with the sixth overall pick for Mike Wallace. If they did that, they would be taking on a huge contract and losing some of the value associated with the new rookie wage scale. I'd rather take the best player available at No. 6, get him signed on the relative cheap and then build the team that way. If they are going to acquire a veteran receiver, they could do so for a price lower than the sixth pick.
Robert from Los Angeles asks for my opinion on Alex Smith remaining unsigned in San Francisco.
Mike Sando: Still think it is a matter of time before he signs. The fit is too good for him in San Francisco. He would likely not fare as well elsewhere. I have always thought Jim Harbaugh would be more calculating about the position than his public comments about loving Smith would indicate. And the deeper the 49ers get into the offseason, the more analytical they are likely to be about the position. But I still think there is enough equity (Harbaugh's word) for Smith and the 49ers to work out a contract.
We should know more soon. I'm leaning toward Peyton Manning landing in Tennessee. If that happens, what becomes of Matt Hasselbeck? Where might Steve Hutchinson go after visiting Tennessee and then Seattle? Lots of dominoes to consider, all waiting for the first one to fall.