Seattle Seahawks defensive end Chris Clemons is closing the door on future talks with the team, electing instead to become an unrestricted agent in 2013, according to one report.
A team source close to the situation, however, begs to differ.
According to a report by the Sports Xchange on Saturday, Clemons turned down a three-year, $18 million extension offer from the Seahawks, and intends to play out the end of his contract this season and become an unrestricted free agent in 2013.
Clemons, who turns 31 on Oct. 30, is in the final year of a contract that will pay him $4 million in base salary in 2012. He led Seattle in sacks the past two seasons, with 11 in each.
According to the report, the Seahawks offered Clemons a new, three-year contract through 2014 that would raise this year’s compensation to $8 million and add two more years, including base salaries of $4.5 million in 2013 and $5.5 million in 2014.
However, a club source close to the situation contradicted the report, saying the Seahawks have not received a formal rejection on any deal, and the two sides continue to negotiate.
That is consistent with what Seattle coach Pete Carroll said about the situation on Tuesday, when Clemons failed to show up for mandatory minicamp. Clemons will be fined $73,000 for staying home last week, and also will lose a $100,000 workout bonus.
Along with the mandatory minicamp, Clemons missed most of Seattle’s organized team activities (OTAs).
Clemons’ agent, Donald Henderson, did not immediately return a phone message seeking comment.
“We’ve had open communications with the agent and with Chris,” Carroll said this week. “And we feel like everything’s been on the up and up and very amicable and all that. So it continues to be one of our priorities and we’d love to get him back.”
The speculation is that Clemons is upset that Seattle drafted his future replacement when it used its first-rouind pick, No. 15 overall, to choose speedy West Virginia pass rusher Bruce Irvin in April’s draft.
However, Seattle’s is looking to improve a pass rush that tied for 19th overall in the league last season with 33 sacks, and Carroll said he thinks that the pairing of Irvin and Clemons coming off the edge in passing situations could help boost the team’s sack numbers during the 2012 season.
“He’s got another year on his contract, so we’re talking about future potential stuff. That’s something we’ve had our eye on for some time with him. He’s done a very good job for us for the first couple years with us, and we’re real pleased with his play and his work habits.”