Negotiation 'deadline' hasn't helped Seahawks, Wilson
It's almost time to see whether a deadline that's not actually a deadline will truly be a deadline.
That's pretty much all the drama that's left in the near future for contract talks between quarterback Russell Wilson and the Seattle Seahawks. Sources have told FOX Sports there remains a sizable gap between the sides and only significant concessions by one or both parties will get a deal done by the first practice of training camp Friday morning.
So what, right? There's still plenty of time before the start of the regular season, correct?
Yes, but as NFL.com reported earlier this month, the team and Wilson's agent, Mark Rodgers, have set a deadline of Friday morning to get a deal done. It was an attempt to draw the sides closer together, though all it's done to this point is provide a finish line with a 2015 salary of $1.5 million for Wilson on the other side of it.
Sources say the Seahawks have been offering a contract that would make Wilson one of the top three highest-paid quarterbacks in the league. One source said Seattle’s offers have been more lucrative than the five-year, $103.8 million deal Cam Newton signed in June. Newton is scheduled to make $31 million during the 2015 season, with another $10 million coming via an option bonus in April.
Considering the Seahawks' offer is in line with Newton's deal, that means Wilson's bet on himself, should he choose not to sign, would be worth around $40 million in the next calendar year. Come March, he'd be subject to the franchise tag and a one-year offer of around $25 million. It's the closest he would get to being a true free agent instead of trying to negotiate as one while still having one season remaining on his deal.
That's the fate that awaits Wilson if he, Rodgers and the team stand by their vow to stop negotiating once Friday's practice begins at 10:35 a.m. Pacific. Of course, nothing would prevent them from kick-starting talks once again later this month and ignoring the deadline that really isn't.
But for now, the clock is ticking. And it appears there will not be an agreement before the alleged point of no return.