NFL Free Agency Primer: Geno Smith

The regular season has come to a close, and most teams have already begun the complicated process of preparing for the 2023 season. In the coming months, we'll be covering the impending free agents most capable of shifting the balance of power in the NFL.

The Player: Geno Smith

Quarterback Geno Smith came out of nowhere to lift the Seattle Seahawks back to relevance in 2022. In his first season as his team's unquestioned starter since 2014, the long-time backup threw for a franchise-record 4282 passing yards and led the Seahawks to the ninth-most points in the league and a Wildcard Round berth. His 69.8 completion percentage led the NFL, and his 100.5 passer rating was the fifth-best in the league.

The Fit:

Smith is a veteran quarterback whose failures drastically outnumber his successes. Outside of one impressive season with the Seahawks, he has struggled to contribute even adequate play in stints with the New York Jets, New York Giants, and Los Angeles Chargers. He has found a strong fit in Seattle, but if either he or the team decide to play hardball, he could be a sensible option for a middling team that believes they're a solid quarterback away from a playoff berth. The Washington Commanders, New Orleans Saints, or Carolina Panthers would all make sense.

The Cost:

Given his solid 2022 season, Smith can likely expect a franchise tag from the Seahawks that would lock him in for one year at approximately $32.5 million. Given his track record, a long-term deal isn't assured. If the Seahawks truly believe in him, a short-term deal in the range of Minnesota Vikings quarterback Kirk Cousins' $35 million per year and Las Vegas Raiders quarterback Derek Carr's $40.5 million per year would make sense for both parties.
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