Free Agency Is Nearly Here

The free agency signing period begins at 1:00 PST today, and the Seahawks are sitting on $27.7 million in cap space.  Technically, NFL franchises are not allowed to begin negotiating with any free agents but their own before the starter pistol goes off this afternoon, and yet every year a handful of teams submit complex, meticulously typewritten contracts to the league office before free agency is even a minute old.  Will the Seahawks be among them, flexing their checkbook to sign a big name like Mario Williams, or will they opt for a more cautious wait-and-see approach?

UPDATE (2:00): The first signing of the 2012 free agency period has just been announced, and it’s none other than . . . Pierre Garcon?  Really?  That’s the big, splashy first signing we’ve all been waiting around to hear?

It’s going to be a long, slow day.

UPDATE (2:33): According to Don Banks of Sports Illustrated, the Seahawks and Dolphins “are going to be Matt Flynn’s market.”  Flynn doesn’t have a lot of on-field experience, but he’s young, promising, and his spine is still in factory floor condition.

UPDATE (2:39): Jason La Canfora of is reporting that Titans defensive lineman Jason Jones has meetings scheduled with both the Seahawks and Rams.  Jason Jones played both defensive end and defensive tackle for Tennessee.  He’s notched 15.5 sacks over the course of his four year career, but he got nine of those in his first two seasons; as a starting defensive tackle in 2010 and 2011, he made 3.5 and 3 sacks, respectively, and missed at least one game both years.

UPDATE (2:54):  Here’s two more free agent visits, and neither one is what I would call exciting news.  Former Dolphins QB Chad Henne is now scheduled to visit with the Seahawks, and TE John Carlson will be meeting with the Chiefs.

UPDATE (3:13): According to his agent, special teams ace Heath Farwell has been re-signed by the Seahawks.  To go along with his blocked punt last year, Farwell is a beast on coverage units and led the league in special teams tackles.

UPDATE (3:23): Red Bryant is back in the fold.  Hell yes.

UPDATE (3:39): According to Adam Schefter, Bryant signed a 5 year, $35 million contract with $14.5 million guaranteed.  The Seahawks were hoping to sign him to a contract closer in size to the 5 year, $25 million one with $9 million guaranteed they gave Brandon Mebane last year, but they had to up the offer when the Patriots began making a push to sign Big Red.