Charlie Whitehurst: Back whence he came
No, not Keyser Soze, Charlie Whitehurst.
The San Diego Chargers announced Friday afternoon that he agreed to a two-year deal that will return him to the team that traded him to Seattle two years ago.
Those Seahawks' fans who want to avoid the gnashing of teeth ought to stop reading now. Really. I'm serious.
Because I'm going to review the terms of the trade and contract that landed Whitehurst in Seattle in 2010. Because Seattle didn't just give Whitehurst a two-year, $8 million contract to come to Seattle, the Seahawks gave up draft capital for the privilege of doing so.
See, Whitehurst was a restricted free agent, and the Chargers had made him what is referred to as an original-round tender, which is to say a one-year contract that gave them the right to either match an offer sheet he signed with another team or receive a draft pick in the round he was selected as compensation for that team.
Well, Seattle didn't have a third-round pick in the 2010 draft. The Seahawks traded that away to draft Deon Butler in the fourth round in 2009. This meant Seattle couldn't sign Whitehurst to an offer sheet. Instead, it had to get San Diego to agree to terms of a deal before the Chargers would then trade Whitehurst to Seattle, complete with his new contract.
Well, Seattle did just that. The Seahawks agreed to give the Chargers a third-round pick in 2011, and change places in the second round of the draft, which meant San Diego got the eighth pick of the second round -- No. 40 overall -- and Seattle got the 28th pick of the round, No. 60.
The Chargers took that No. 40 pick, packaged it with their first-round choice (No. 28 overall) to constitute the main course of their trade to move up to No. 12 overall. San Diego used that choice to choose running back Ryan Mathews of Fresno State.
The Seahawks' used the 60th choice in 2010 -- the one it received from San Diego -- to pick receiver Golden Tate of Notre Dame.
San Diego used the 2011 third-round selection it acquired from Seattle to choose cornerback Shareece Wright of USC.
So to summarize the deal:
Seattle received two years and
three four regular-season starts from Charlie Whitehurst, which produced three touchdown passes, four interceptions and a Week 17 victory in 2010 over the Rams to earn the Seahawks' a playoff berth. Seattle also got Golden Tate.
San Diego received the second-round pick that helped it vault from No. 28 to No. 12 overall in the 2010 draft, choosing their starting running back, and a third-round choice to use on a cornerback for a third-string quarterback who never attempted a regular-season pass in his four years on the team.
Whitehurst got: $8 million from Seattle, and a return trip to San Diego.