SEATTLE – Before signing again with the Seattle Seahawks last month, veteran defender Carlos Dunlap wanted to make sure Russell Wilson would still be their quarterback.
Dunlap said he got that insurance from Wilson himself.
Talking to reporters via video conference for the first time since returning to Seattle on a two-year deal, Dunlap reformulated his conversation with Wilson.
“I asked him if he would of course be with us, because if I come back I will come back because I see him as my quarterback and the rest of the team I will pick up where we left off,”
ESPN’s Adam Schefter reported at the start of the free agency last month that the Chicago Bears were making “a very aggressive pursuit” of Wilson, but were told that Seattle was not trading him at the time. The Bears were one of four teams that Wilson’s agent Mark Rodgers previously told Schefter that the quarterback would play for if the Seahawks were to deal with him.
The others were the Dallas Cowboys (who have since extended Dak Prescott’s deal), the Las Vegas Raiders and the New Orleans Saints. A source recently told ESPN that Wilson has no plans to expand his team list. He has a non-trade clause that gives him the right to veto any trade destination.
Wilson worked to encourage running back Chris Carson to sign again with the Seahawks, a source told ESPN. Dunlap said he and Wilson were in regular communication during the time the Seahawks released Dunlap in early March, until they agreed to sign him again 2 weeks later in the second week of release.
“A lot of teams showed interest, but only the true competitors actually made offers,” Dunlap said. “But Seattle is where I wanted to be, so when the offer came from Seattle, I could tell you this: The deal was completed within 24 hours of them offering me to sign.”
Dunlap’s two – year deal is worth $ 13.6 million with $ 8.5 million in guarantees. The two-time Pro Bowler was to earn $ 14.1 million before his release. Dunlap said the Seahawks made it clear to him when they acquired him in a deal with the Cincinnati Bengals last October that they might have to release him after the season. He cited this transparency as one of the reasons he wanted to return to Seattle.
“They were very transparent and that’s something I appreciate from day 1 that came in. When we made the signing and the deal, they let me know that this would be a potential step in [offseason], and then when it actually happened, yes, it still hit differently because I’ve never been cut before, “he said. But they were still very transparent. They wanted me to know they wanted me back, just this was one of the movements they had to take because of the situation they were in.
Dunlap will continue to carry No. 43 along with the Seahawks.
“I seem to continue where we left off and do better,” he said. “This includes keeping the same number. One of the things you will learn about me is that I’m a creature of habit. I like to finish what I started and I feel like I have a lot of unfinished work to be done. “