Restricted free agent Brandon Marshall will visit Seahawks
Brandon Marshall, a Denver Broncos receiver who is a restricted free agent, will visit Seattle on Saturday, according to an ESPN report.
Seattle Times staff reporter
Brandon Marshall's hands aren't a question.
Not after catching more than 100 passes in three successive seasons.
Once Marshall arrives at the Seahawks headquarters on Saturday for a free-agent visit, the question will not be whether Seattle wants to hold on to him, but how badly.
Marshall turns 26 this month and has established himself as a dominant receiver in four seasons with the Broncos. His history also includes multiple arrests and a team suspension.
But Seattle's desire to acquire Marshall isn't the only variable in this equation. Marshall is a restricted free agent, which means that if Seattle is to acquire him it must offer him a contract that Marshall finds satisfactory and also give Denver some compensation.
The level of that compensation to Denver is both a question and potential hurdle. The Broncos tendered Marshall at a level that entitles them not only the right to match any offer sheet Marshall signs, but gives them a first-round pick in compensation should they choose not to match it.
So if Seattle were to sign Marshall to an offer sheet, the Broncos would receive the No. 6 overall pick in compensation if they did not match the offer. Seattle also holds the No. 14 pick, but the language of the league's collective-bargaining agreement dictates that Denver would receive the pick belonging to Seattle and not a pick it acquired in trade.
It's also possible Denver could agree to receive less compensation for allowing Seattle to acquire Marshall.
Seattle certainly has a void at wide receiver, especially after Nate Burleson's departure in the first hours of free agency. Burleson averaged a team-high 12.9 yards per reception last season and was on pace to set a career high in catches if he hadn't missed the final three games because of injury. Burleson, who had 63 catches last year, agreed to a five-year contract with Detroit.
Marshall has a connection to the Seahawks' coaching staff. New offensive coordinator Jeremy Bates, quarterbacks coach Jedd Fisch and tight-ends coach Pat McPherson had previously coached in Denver while Marshall was there.
Marshall is scheduled to be in Seattle on Saturday. It's the first step in a much longer process in which the Seahawks must decide not only whether they want to pay him as a top-tier free agent, but how much they will give up for the opportunity.
• Seattle hosted defensive end Dwan Edwards of Baltimore for a free-agent visit. Edwards 28, is a six-year pro who attended Oregon State.
• Seattle is scheduled to host defensive end Tyler Brayton of Carolina for a free-agent visit beginning Friday.
Brayton is the grandson of legendary WSU baseball coach Bobo Brayton.
• Seattle is scheduled to host guard Ben Hamilton, the longest-tenured member of Denver's offensive line.
Danny O'Neil: 206-464-2364 or firstname.lastname@example.org
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