Seattle Seahawks general manager John Schneider has weighed in on recent rumors that Geno Smith might leave to join the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.
When the Tampa Bay Buccaneers finally hired an offensive coordinator this offseason, it only answered part of the biggest question surrounding the team.
Sure, the Bucs needed a new offensive coordinator, but the franchise also doesn’t have a concrete plan for what will happen at quarterback this season. Kyle Trask is the only quarterback under contract for 2023, which seems to suggest the team will make some addition in free agency to provide support.
The type of addition is the next big question that needs to be answered.
Will the Bucs add a veteran starter to serve as a bridge while Trask continues to learn or will they make a signing that secures a starter for years to come?
It seems likely that Tampa Bay will make a decision somewhere in the middle, where the team can be competitive with a veteran who can also continue to teach Trask as he settles in as the quarterback of the future.
That guy could be Comeback Player of the Year, Geno Smith.
Buccaneers rumors: Seahawks GM comments on recent Geno Smith rumors
Tampa Bay hired Seattle Seahawks quarterbacks coach Dave Canales to be the team’s next offensive coordinator which has naturally connected Smith to the Bucs.
Seahawks general manager John Schneider commented on the possibility of Smith joining Canales in Tampa Bay this offseason.
Needless to say, he doesn’t sound too worried.
“Obviously, Dave has a great relationship with Drew [Lock] and Geno,” Schneider said on Seattle Sports 710AM. “Shoot, he did a great job working with Geno (and) staying after practice with Drew. “Those guys would work their tails off for a good hour, hour and a half after practice. They’d be out there in the dark throwing the ball, working on footwork and ball carriage and everything. … free agency doesn’t start until the middle of March, so there’s a huge period here where we have time to work through things.”
If there’s a Seahawks quarterback who follows Canales to the Bucs it’s probably Drew Lock.
Smith is not only in line to be a top priority for the Seahawks this offseason, but he’s likely to command a salary that might price the Bucs out. Tampa Bay enters this offseason $55 million over the cap and strapped with a $35 million dead cap hit after Tom Brady retired.
That situation is why the Bucs aren’t being seriously considered for guys like Derek Carr, Lamar Jackson, and Aaron Rodgers, and it could even complicate pursuits of Jimmy Garoppolo and Baker Mayfield too.
Smith, as perfect as he might be, is probably in that tier of quarterbacks out of reach for the Bucs. If anything he might use the team as leverage to get a bigger deal from Seattle rather than head to Tampa Bay with Canales.
Schneider will have to fry that egg if it gets tossed his way, but for now, he doesn’t seem too worried about losing Smith.