With just two accrued seasons, Seals-Jones was an exclusive rights free agent and didn't have any choice but to re-sign with the Cardinals. So far this offseason, management has exchanged one veteran tight end (Jermaine Gresham) for another (Charles Clay). Clay has a track record as a modest pass-catching option, but Seals-Jones has shown promise in his career, including 11.8 YPC and four touchdowns on his 46 career receptions.
As an exclusive rights free agent, Seals-Jones has no leverage and will sign the tender in due time, or else not be able to play in 2019. In 25 games the last two seasons, he's recorded 46 catches (on 97 targets) for 544 yards and four touchdowns. With the arrival of Charles Clay in Arizona, Seals-Jones may have difficulty having that true breakout in 2019, but an improving Josh Rosen and new system under coach Kliff Kingsbury could help the tight end's cause.
Seals-Jones (neck) notched 34 receptions (on 69 targets) for 343 yards and one touchdown in 15 games during the 2018 season.
A lack of offensive personnel allowed Seals-Jones to rack up the third-most targets among Cardinals, but the quarterback trio of Josh Rosen, Sam Bradford and Mike Glennon brought the team to a last-place finish in just about every category, including passing yards per game and points per game. With nowhere to go but up as Rosen, a 2018 first-rounder, settles in as a pro, Seals-Jones stands to benefit alongside other building blocks like David Johnson and Christian Kirk (foot). Seals-Jones is an exclusive-rights free agent in the offseason, meaning he's beholden to whatever contract the team tenders him once the new league year begins March 13.
Seals-Jones (neck) will not play in Sunday's game at Seattle.
Seals-Jones suffered a stinger during last week's 31-9 loss to the Rams, allowing Jermaine Gresham to set a season-high mark with 46 snaps, though the 30-year-old didn't draw any targets. Seals-Jones finishes his second pro season with a 34-343-1 receiving line on 69 targets, unable to live up to the potential he flashed at the end of his rookie campaign. He does offer some 2019 breakout appeal if the Cardinals can upgrade their offensive line and coaching staff.
Seals-Jones remains away from the field to allow his stinger to heal rather than put undue stress on the region. With nothing to play for aside from draft positioning, the Cardinals may not press their luck with the second-year tight end Sunday in Seattle, which would give veterans Jermaine Gresham and John Phillips plenty of access to offensive snaps.
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