Paul Kuharsky: D.K. Metcalf Got The Money, But Still Needs A Quarterback

D.K. Metcalf should now move from wanting a contract to wanting a quarterback.

The Seahawks fourth-year wide receiver was “holding in” at Seahawks’ camp until the two sides reached a reported three-year extension worth 72 million with $58.2 million guaranteed.

That’s a nice $24 million a year average for the 6-foot-4, 235-pound receiver with an outrageous catch-radius and 358 targets already.

His 29 touchdowns in his first three seasons are tied for the sixth most in league history. He’s proved draft critics who thought he was stiff and straight-line, including me, terribly incorrect. But he can’t throw them and catch them.

And Geno Smith (or Drew Lock) isn’t going to keep him on anything close to his current pace.

Geno Smith and Drew Lock
Seattle’s quarterback is TBD. (Photo via Getty Images.)

The Seahawks have expressed nothing but (unreasonable) satisfaction with their quarterback situation since the Russell Wilson trade, while every outsider is wondering how they can possibly go forward with what they’ve got while Metcalf and the talented Tyler Lockett line up outside.

The receiving duo is super talented, but if their team does anything this season it’ll be with defense and a combination of Rashad Penny (usually injured) and rookie Kenneth Walker. Unless GM John Schneider, a generally wise personnel man, decides Jimmy Garoppolo is a significant upgrade who will enhance the Metcalf investment and the rest of the roster.

Without a dose of Jimmy G, well, at least Metcalf can enjoy that $30 million signing bonus.

In a division where the Seahawks will be chasing the defending Super Bowl champion Rams and the ever-inventive 49ers, well, it’s no wonder bookmakers set the over-under win total for the them at 5.5, tied for the third-lowest in the NFL with the Jets, per The Action Network.

It will be a huge surprise if the Seattle contends for the playoffs rather than for draft prizes Bryce Young or C.J. Stroud.

HOUSTON, TX – DECEMBER 12: Seattle Seahawks wide receiver DK Metcalf (14) carries the ball during the game between the Houston Texans and Seattle Seahawks on December 12, 2021 at NRG Stadium in Houston, TX. (Photo by George Walker/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)

Metcalf must be content to grit out an ugly year and be part of the rebuild with one of those young guns, as his team has the ammo to go get one with the fruits of the Wilson deal.

Trouble is the Texans have a lower Vegas win total (4.5) plus even more resources to get themselves to the top of the draft if they need to move to replace Davis Mills and the Falcons (5.5) may also be worse than Seattle if they don’t want to move forward with Desmond Ridder.

With the new deal for Metcalf, 10 of the 16 receivers with the highest annual averages in the league got their contracts this year. Deebo Samuel is on the verge on another.

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Tua Tagovailoa (1) taps the helmet of Tyreek Hill (10) of the Miami Dolphins between drills during the Miami Dolphins Mandatory Minicamp at the Baptist Health Training Complex on June 1, 2022, in Miami Gardens, Florida. (Photo via Getty Images)

It’s a golden era of receiver money.


Top annual receiver salaries from contracts signed in 2022, per spotrac:

1) Tyreek Hill, $30M

2) Devante Adams, $28M

4) Cooper Kupp, $26.7M

5) A.J. Brown, $25M

6t) D.K. Metcalf, $24

8) Terry McLaurin, $22.8

9) D.J. Moore, $20.6M

11t) Mike Williams, $20M

14) Chris Godwin, $19.9M

16) Christian Kirk, $18M


How many of those guys have a great quarterback? Godwin with Tom Brady.

How many have a pretty good one? Adams with Derek Carr, Kupp with Matthew Stafford, Williams with Justin Herbert.

The Dolphins acquired Hill to help make Tua Tagovailoa, the Eagles traded for Brown to do the same for Jalen Hurts. McLaurin and Moore were retained to be foundational pieces for Washington and Carolina, respectively, where quarterback situations are in transition. The Jaguars brought Kirk to Jacksonville ($18M in 2022) to help boost Trevor Laurence.

Only one has it great, but none have it as bad as Metcalf.

Paul Kuharsky hosts OutKick 360 and contributes to OutKick.com Also see PaulKuharsky.com

Written by Paul Kuharsky

Paul Kuharsky is an award-winning writer who has covered the NFL for over 22 years in California, Texas, and Tennessee, and also is a selector for the Pro Football Hall of Fame. After ESPN, PK came to join the longest running trio in Nashville Sports Talk in 2012.

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