Thursday, February 26, 2009

Ruskell: "We'll Wade Cautiously" in Free Agency

by: Mike Parker

Speculation on the Seahawks' plans for this year's free agency period just got a little more interesting - and maybe a tad more disappointing.

Tim Ruskell told Clare Farnsworth that he doesn't plan on making any big splashes in the free agent market at first. In all actuality, this probably makes all dreams of seeing Albert Haynesworth or TJ Houshmandzadeh in blue & green come September officially dead.

But, according to Ruskell, that doesn't mean the Seahawks will be completely asleep until then.

"We're not going to be big players," club president Tim Ruskell said. "You're not going to write about us that way...We're going to wade in cautiously and use it strategically."
While Farnsworth translates this as not going after any first-tier free agents right off the bat, I think there's a couple ways you can interpret this statement from Ruskell:

1.) It's a smokescreen intended to throw speculation to the wayside and catch other teams off guard with who we're targeting and in what areas. Though Haynesworth and Housh are almost certainly going to demand more than what we're willing to pay, for example, that doesn't mean we'll ignore other high prospects entirely. (Malcolm Floyd or Jabar Gaffney, anyone?)

2.) The team doesn't necessarily plan on making any specific moves in first or second-tier free agency, but will be open to possibilities. I also think the "wading cautiously" approach will mean Ruskell will let other teams fight it out for big-ticket players, and then make a smart, decisive move when the dust settles.

With Crabtree becoming something of a question mark in the draft, however, I seriously think Gaffney and Floyd are worth more than just a cursory glance. They're young, quality players who would provide depth, experience and insurance to an injury-riddled unit.

(Plus, I had a weird dream last night that we cut Burleson, which I doubt will actually happen, but maybe my sports-clairvoyance was trying to tell me something. And the story I linked to here was written by Clare Farnsworth! Clearly, there's the connection. Okay, maybe not.) -END-