Well, it turns out the Seahawks are choosing the latter.
Seattle traded Clark to the Kansas City Chiefs for a 2019 first-round pick (29th overall), a 2020 second-round pick that will be the worse of the Chiefs’ two second-rounders in that draft and a pick swap in the third round this season, which move the Seahawks from the 92nd overall pick to the 84th overall pick. The trade was reported by several outlets, including ESPN’s Adam Schefter.
Seahawks agreed to trade their franchise player, DE Frank Clark, to the Kansas City Chiefs for a 2019 first-round pick, a 2020 second-round pick and an exchange of third-round picks this year, per league sources.
— Adam Schefter (@AdamSchefter) April 23, 2019
In addition, Clark will get that massive payday he sought after, signing a five-year, $105.5 million contract that includes $63.5 million in guaranteed money, according to NFL reporter Ian Rapaport.
That was fast: The #Chiefs agreed to terms with star pass-rusher Frank Clark on a 5-year deal worth $105.5M, source said. $63.5M guaranteed.
— Ian Rapoport (@RapSheet) April 23, 2019
The Seahawks, who now find themselves in the position of coming off a 10-win season, a playoff appearance in 2018 and being armed with two first-round draft picks in the upcoming draft, have a ton of potential to make the next big leap in the competitive NFC West they once held sway over.
Considering the big money contract that Seattle lavished upon Russell Wilson, it would make a ton of financial sense to populate as much of the roster as possible with rookie contracts.
Meanwhile, this continues a sort of bizarre motif for the Chiefs as well, a franchise becoming exceptionally well-known for taking chances on players with character issues.
Clark fell into the second round in 2015 because of questions about his off-field behavior, specifically some allegations of domestic violence when he was at Michigan.
Kareem Hunt was cut by the Chiefs after footage emerged of him attacking a woman in a hotel in Cleveland, while Tyreek Hill is currently under investigation by the NFL for “an incident involving a minor”, the details of which have still not been made public.
The Chiefs have a superstar quarterback—albeit one with character issues of his own, namely eating ketchup on steak—in Patrick Mahomes.
They hosted the AFC Championship Game, losing to the eventual Super Bowl champion Patriots.
In an NFL universe where title windows rarely stay open for more than a year or two—Bill Belichick and Tom Brady’s sustained excellence being a massive outlier from the norm—the Chiefs may well have decided that any risks that come from Clark are more than offset by what he can do for their defense.
Clark was a premiere pass rusher for the Seahawks, notching 35 sacks and eight forced fumbles in just four seasons in Seattle. Clark will still be in his prime, as he will only be 26-years-old when next season begins.
Then again, the reaction on Twitter seems to suggest that maybe this wasn’t quite the best move the Chiefs could have made, with Ross Tucker of SiriusXM and The Athletic making a key point about both the trade and the money subsequently paid to Clark:
The Chiefs give up a 1 & a 2 for the right to pay Frank Clark the money the Seahawks didn’t want to. pic.twitter.com/CpL8JSRc82
— Ross Tucker (@RossTuckerNFL) April 23, 2019
Also worth noting, for the deal to happen at all, Clark was going to have to be paid more than Dallas Cowboys star Demarcus Lawrence, according to ESPN’s Josina Anderson:
And yes, it was understood in order for Frank Clark and the Chiefs to come to terms on an extension, it was “gonna have to be more than D-Law,” because that is what Clark told me. So, there you go. https://t.co/Rc1H8a7oG7
— ig: josinaanderson (@JosinaAnderson) April 23, 2019
There’s no guarantee Seattle’s done either—GM John Schneider still has just five picks in the upcoming NFL Draft. He could easily trade down to accrue more draft picks.
The first round of the 2019 NFL Draft kicks off on Thursday, April 25.
Truth and Accuracy
We are committed to truth and accuracy in all of our journalism. Read our editorial standards.