NFL News - Wilson Trade Talks, Duke Johnson Released

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Wilson On the Way Out of Seattle?

Seattle Seahawks quarterback Russell Wilson may or may not want out depending on the day and the source. His quotes last week made it sound like he was likely to demand a trade, but his agent Mark Rodgers told reporters this week that a trade had not been demanded. 

According to Rodgers, Wilson told the team he wants to remain in Seattle but that if a trade were to happen, the only teams he would accept a deal to are the Chicago Bears, Dallas Cowboys, Las Vegas Raiders, and New Orleans Saints. 

Wilson voiced his displeasure in the team’s pass protection and personnel decisions and preferred the team run the ball less than they have in recent years. It is not a coincidence that all four teams on his trade list have head coaches with an offensive background while Seattle coach Pete Carroll is a defensive-minded coach. Wilson was sacked 47 times in 2020, and his 394 times sacked over the last nine years are the most in that span since the 1970 AFL-NFL merger.  

Wilson is currently listed by DraftKings at +1400 to be the NFL’s 2021 Most Valuable Player. Only Patrick Mahomes (+500), Aaron Rodgers (+800), and Josh Allen (+1300) have better odds. The Seahawks are +1100 to win the NFC, the sixth-best odds. They are behind NFC West rivals Los Angeles Rams (+600) and San Francisco 49ers (+650).

Wilson has a no-trade clause in his contract, but some league execs believe he will be on the market before or around the draft. If the 32-year-old is traded before June 1, then $39 million in dead money will be assessed to Seattle’s 2021 salary cap. The remainder of Wilson’s contract pays him $19 million in 2021, $19 million in 2022, and $21 million in 2023. 

Houston Releases Duke Johnson

While the big news in Houston recently has been the ongoing Deshaun Watson trade saga, the Texans released veteran running back Duke Johnson on Friday. They also let go center Nick Martin who was a second-round pick in 2016 by former GM/head coach Bill O’Brien. 

Johnson played in 11 games for Houston in 2020 as he ran for 235 yards on 77 carries while catching 28 passes for 249 yards. A former starter with the Cleveland Browns, Johnson backed up Carlos Hyde in 2019 and David Johnson last season for Houston. 

Martin signed a three-year contract in 2019 and was given nearly $20 million in guaranteed money. He was due to make $7.25 million in 2021 after starting 62 games the last four years. 

The Texans remain in turmoil with defensive end J.J. Watt already ending his tenure with the team and Watson remaining steadfast in his desire to leave. Even after meeting with new head coach David Culley last week, the star quarterback is still searching for a trade. Watson is scheduled to make $10.54 million in 2021, and if he is traded, the Texans will take a $21.6 million salary-cap hit. 

The odds have changed back to favoring a stay in Houston for Watson. Those odds are +250, while a trade to Carolina is next up at +300 for Watson. The Chicago Bears and Denver Broncos are both +400 to acquire Watson, while the San Francisco 49ers are +600 and the Miami Dolphins are +800. 

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