While the Seahawks continued to wait for some resolution to the Jadeveon Clowney situation Sunday, the team added yet another veteran offensive lineman, agreeing to terms with guard Chance Warmack.
The signing was first reported by Pro Football Talk with his agent, Ron Slavin, confirming to the Seattle Times that it is a one-year deal.
Other teams were not yet available, but given that Warmack has not played since the 2018 season nor started since 2017 it is likely for or at or close to the veteran minimum, meaning it’s almost certainly a low-risk/possibly high-reward signing if Warmack can live up to the potential that saw him taken in the first round in 2013.
Warmack becomes the fourth offensive lineman the team has signed/agreed to terms with since the free agent signing period began last week. The others are guard/center B.J. Finney and tackles Brandon Shell and Cedric Ogbuehi.
Warmack was the 10th overall pick in the 2013 draft by the Tennessee Titans out of Alabama, and becomes the seventh of the top 13 picks in that draft to have been a member of the Seahawks.
Warmack was a full-time starter for the Titans in his first three years in the league in 2013-15 before injuries derailed his career, and has started 51 games overall.
He began dealing with a knee injury in 2015 and also suffered a hand injury that limited him to two games in 2016.
Warmack spent the 2017 and 2018 seasons with the Eagles, earning a Super Bowl ring following the 2017 year (he played four snaps on offense and two on special teams in the win over the Patriots) but then took last year off to get healthy.
He had recently announced through agent Ron Slavin that he hoped to return to the NFL this season.
Warmack, who turns 29 in August, has played just seven offensive snaps in regular season games since 2017.
A 2018 breakdown of the Eagles from The Athletic assessed Warmack this way: “Warmack is a replacement-level guard who offers less positional versatility than you might like in a backup offensive lineman.”
Warmack’s addition is the latest sign that the Seahawks are unlikely to bring back last year’s primary starting guard, Mike Iupati, who is an unrestricted free agent. Iupati started 15 games last year but missed the playoffs after suffering a neck/stinger injury.
Seattle also appears unlikely to bring back Germain Ifedi, the team’s first-round pick in 2016 who started last year at right tackle.
Warmack gives the Seahawks 15 offensive linemen who are either currently under contract or reported to have agreed to terms.
Here’s the list:
Left tackle Duane Brown, center Justin Britt, guard D.J. Fluker, center Joey Hunt, guard/center/tackle Ethan Pocic, guard/tackle Jamarco Jones, guard/center Kyle Fuller, guard Phil Haynes, tackle Chad Wheeler, guard Jordan Roos, guard Demetrius Knox and the four additions — Warmack, Finney, Ogbbuehi and Shell.
The Seahawks also reportedly may re-sign guard Jordan Simmons. Simmons was not tendered as an exclusive rights free agent and currently is technically a free agent. But a report from ESPN stated that thet team plans to re-sign Simmons to a “split salary” contract in which he wouldn’t be paid the full amount if he were injured. Simmons missed last season following knee surgery.
Britt’s status, though, remains somewhat unclear as he is recovering from an ACL injury suffered last Oct. 27 at Atlanta and entering the last year of a contract that carries a hefty salary cap hit for 2020.
Britt’s contract calls for an $11.4 million cap hit in 2020 with $2.9 in dead money, meaning the Seahawks could save $8.5 million if he were released. Or, the team could also restructure the deal to add a year or two, but then decrease the cap hit for 2020.
This has also been regarded as a solid draft class for tackles and centers, if not so much for guards, so Seattle will still likely add some rookies to the line.
As noted, the addition of Warmack continues the Seahawks’ affinity for signing first-round picks from the 2013 class, a draft generally regarded as one of the worst in recent NFL memory (especially at the top) and a year when Seattle traded its first-round pick to Minnesota as part of the Percy Harvin deal.
First-round picks that year who have since become Seahawks are: OL Luke Joeckel (second overall), DE Dion Jordan (third), DE Ziggy Ansah (fifth), LB Barkevious Mingo (sixth), Warmack (10th), Fluker (11th) and DL Sheldon Richardson (13th).
Warmack is the older brother of Dallas Warmack, who started last year at Oregon and is now draft eligible.