Daniel Shirey-USA TODAY Sports
Two offseasons ago the Raiders watched their star tight end, Zach Miller leave for a big contract with the Seahawks. Now the Seahawks are reaping the benefits of that signing.
The Seahawks paid pretty big money for Pro Bowl tight end's services two seasons ago. He signed a 5-year $34 million contract which is very good for a tight end. Miller deserved it. He was a great tight end for the Raiders and their leading receiver the last three years with the team. But the Raiders opted to spend big money on other potential free agents while allowing Miller, Nnamdi Asomugha, and Robert Gallery all leave to sign elsewhere.
Two years later, Robert Gallery has retired due to injuries and Nnamdi Asomugha is struggling in Philadelphia. One could argue Miller's numbers have not been worthy of the near $7 million per season figure on his contract. His 629 receiving yards in the past two seasons in Seattle is less than he had in his last full season in Oakland (685) alone.
But his regular season numbers were meaningless Sunday night in Washington when he was every bit the Pro Bowl tight end he was for the Raiders.
"Zach Miller is tremendous," said Russell Wilson."He came up huge tonight, once again. He does a great job of catching the football, he does a great job of blocking. The checkdown on third down where he came out into the flat, I was going through my whole entire progression and he came out, he was my last read and he was there for me and he did a great job of making that big time catch and continue on for a first down. He had a tremendous game tonight."
Miller was the leading receiver for the Seahawks Sunday with four catches for 48 yards. He also laid several key blocks to spring Russell Wilson for some of his 67 rushing yards. And aside from the crucial third down catch which stood out to Wilson, Miller also caught the two-point conversion which put the Seahawks up for a full score 21-14 late in the fourth quarter.
Good for Miller. If he were still a Raider, he would be at home watching the playoffs instead of participating in them. The Raiders didn't come up completely empty handed in losing Miller, though. They received a fourth round compensatory pick which they used on their starting standout rookie weakside linebacker, Miles Burris.