BY SPNW Staff 05:37PM 03/11/2014

Green Bay TE Finley will visit Seahawks

The Seahawks will take a visit Wednesday from free agent TE Jermichael Finley, who underwent spinal fusion surgery as a Green Bay Packer in November, according to several published reports. That could mean contract restructuring with TE Zach Miller, whose $7 million cap hit makes him vulnerable to being cut, is not be going well.

If he’s healthy — after a fusion between the C-3 and C-4 vertebra required a three- to four-month recovery — the Seahawks will be considering one of the best pass-catching tight ends in the NFL, but he’s neither the pass nor the run blocker that Miller is, a virtue in coach Pete Carroll’s run-heavy offense.

In an October game against Cleveland, Finley, 6-foot-4 and 240 pounds, went down after a helmet-t0-helmet hit that was later diagnosed as a neck contusion, but left him momentarily paralyzed.

“I was very conscious, but I could not move,” Finley said afterward. “I looked my teammate (Andrew Quarless) directly in the eye and whispered, ‘Help me, Q. I can’t move. I can’t breathe.’ The scariest moment was seeing the fear in Q’s eyes. I knew something was wrong, but his reaction verified it. That really shook me up.”

Finley, 26, was a potent weapon in the Packers offense (223 catches for 2,785 yards and 20 touchdowns over six seasons). His two-year, $14 million contract expired, and because of his injury, may be a cheaper alternative to Miller.



  • 1coolguy

    We’ve got the get Miller re-signed for his catching and most importantly his blocking.
    He’s been a very big part of Pete’s scheme.

    • art thiel

      The only way to get him to accept a re-structure is to threaten him with replacement.

  • Matt712

    Jermichael Finley is an absolute stud. I’m a big Zach Miller fan but Finley, if he’s healthy, would be a great pick-up. And if the offensive line gets shored up this season, the hawks won’t have to rely on a blocking TE as much. Also, at 26 years old, Finley keeps the team younger, which I believe is and will continue to be a key trend for sustained success.

    • art thiel

      Finley is a better open-field guy, but as you point out, Miller’s priority is blocking, and he’s good. I think the Seahawks like Miller a lot, and he’s only 28. They just need leverage.

  • jafabian

    Finley’s and Miller’s career stats in GB and Oakland respectively are similar except for TD’s where Finley’s career high is 8 and Miller’s is 5. Miller averaged 680 yards receiving in Oakland whereas Finley has avergaged 703 if you take out the 2 years where he missed extended time due to injury. IMO, Miller can be a Pro Bowl caliber TE in regards to receiving its just that he doesn’t have the role on the Hawks. His first year with the team his yards dropped to 336 a season but his YPC has remained a consistent 11.0. About a yard off what it was in Oakland. When he’s needed he’s clutch as evidenced in the playoff game against Atlanta. He’s a big part of why Marhawn has had so much success as Hawk.

    I want Zach to return though I agree that the trend with the Hawks is to stay young. That’s the same gameplan the Patriots have used with much success.

    • art thiel

      Much more of any TE’s game is about pass/run blocking than receiving stats, especially so with the run-heavy Hawks. Which is why I think Miller is a better fit, but not at his scheduled pay. He needs to know the team is serious about cutting him.

      • jafabian

        It’s interesting that the Hawks would entertain a player with an injury history after what’s happened with Rice and Harvin. I’d think of the free agent TE’s available that Brandon Pettigrew is the better blocking TE option. Seems to me this is more about sending a message to Zach.

  • RadioGuy

    Finley has been productive for my Packers but given the choice between the two, I’d take Miller…he’s a more well-rounded TE and has only missed five games in his career. Finley is the better pass-catcher but don’t ask him to do any blocking. When he’s actually healthy enough to suit up, that is. Why do the Seahawks have this thing for injury-prone receivers?

    • art thiel

      If they have Willson and McCoy healthy, it gives them options for a passcatcher-first TE, who will, because of injury, be a whole lot cheaper than Miller. They also have to scare Miller into a contract restructure.

    • Its onlySports(DavidWakefield)

      As I read this article my thoughts were right on par with what Art wrote….they feel they must do something about the number Miller is at but they also have a if it aint broke dont fix it mentality about Miller and his prowess for excellent pass blocking.

      So maybe they scare Miller into seeing the company line….Glad you made it safe to Seattle Mister Finley ! come on in!