Hawks re-sign backup QB Jackson

todd.dybas@thenewstribune.comMarch 14, 2014 

The Seahawks and free-agent tight end Jermichael Finley, who suffered a spinal injury playing for the Green Bay Packers last October, have “mutual interest,” reports the NFL Network.

TOM LYNN/THE ASSOCIATED PRESS

Following a torrid first two days, free agency slowed for the Seattle Seahawks Thursday.

The Seahawks did make one move. They brought back backup quarterback Tarvaris Jackson on a one-year deal worth a reported $1.25 million.

The move was expected. Jackson will be entering his third season with the Seahawks and second as the backup to Russell Wilson.

Jackson is respected, if not a bit revered in the locker room for his toughness. In Week 5 of the 2011 season, when Jackson was the starter, he suffered a “high-grade strain” of his pectoral muscle. He missed the rest of that game because of the injury, but played through it the rest of the season.

He’s also a quarterback fully schooled in the Seahawks’ system, making him a logical match to return.

Meanwhile, a couple former teammates were on the move.

Cornerback Walter Thurmond said on Twitter he had a “great” visit in Jacksonville with former Seahawks defensive coordinator Gus Bradley, who is the Jaguars’ head coach. He said his next trip was to San Francisco to visit the Seahawks’ archrival, the 49ers.

“It’s never personal, it’s business,” Thurmond tweeted. “Just (like) how the Hawks let Red (Bryant) and everyone else walk. Obviously there is a reason I haven’t signed back yet.”

Thurmond, 26, was suspended for four games last season for his second violation of the league’s substance-abuse policy. His suspension – along with that of Brandon Browner – gave Byron Maxwell a chance to start. Maxwell never relinquished that spot.

Once he returned, Thurmond was used as the nickelback during the rest of the season.

His past suspensions make him a liability to any team considering signing him as a free agent.

Thurmond is believed to be in Stage 3 of the league’s substance-abuse program. That means if he commits another violation, he will be suspended for at least a calendar year and can only be reinstated by NFL commissioner Roger Goodell.

Thurmond also was injured much of 2011 and 2012 causing him to play just eight total games.

Things were simpler for another former Seahawk who had a positive Jacksonville experience akin to Thurmond’s.

Veteran defensive end Chris Clemons signed with the Jaguars on Thursday, joining former teammate Red Bryant.

The Seahawks released Clemons on Wednesday to save $7.5 million in salary cap space. He reportedly signed a four-year deal with the Jaguars.

At the end of the evening, contradictory reports about Browner emerged. The NFL Network reported that Browner has struck a deal with the New England Patriots. Multiple other outlets said that report was not accurate. Browner’s agent said the original member of the Legion of Boom had not signed and was still in talks with four teams.

No matter who he signs with, Browner will be suspended the first four games of next season for repeated violations of the league’s substance-abuse policy.

FINLEY ON HAWKS’ RADAR

The NFL Network reports “mutual interest” between the Seahawks and tight end Jermichael Finley, who visited earlier in the week.

Finley suffered a spinal injury last October, which required spinal fusion surgery. He must pass a physical before moving forward with any team.

todd.dybas@thenewstribune.com blog.thenewstribune.com/seahawks

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