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.