Fooch's Update: Apparently Allen is heading home to think over his offers, but had a good visit with the Seahawks.
The NFC West just keeps getting better and better. We now have reports that the Seattle Seahawks are close to signing defensive end Jared Allen, and the Arizona Cardinals have signed cornerback Antonio Cromartie. The NFC West continues to be just a little bit ridiculous.
The general idea with Allen is likely that he will be utilized primarily in a pass rush role. He turns 32 this year, and while he remains a strong presence, I have to think Seattle will limit his reps to pass rush situations. Of course, given that this is his strength, I think they'll be fine with that. Allen hasn't missed a game since 2007, so general health is not an issue. If they can just keep him fresh all season long, this is a definite upgrade to the pass rush. The Seahawks re-signed Michael Bennett, but released Chris Clemons and Red Bryant. In adding Allen, the Seahawks come out with a net positive.
The Cardinals bring in Cromartie to start opposite Patrick Peterson. Pro Football Focus rated Cromartie as their No. 103 cornerback. Even if you don't take their stats as the be-all, end-all, that's still pretty awful. He finished the season with three interceptions, but he gave up a 100.7 passer rating when in coverage. That's kinda bad.
The Allen signing is obviously the bigger deal. Some folks have started panicking, but it's safe to say Trent Baalke and company will not panic. The 49ers still have a strong offensive line to protect Colin Kaepernick and open up lanes in the run game. I won't pretend that the Seahawks have not improved with the addition of Jared Allen, but the 49ers are plenty talented. They need to find success in the upcoming draft, but just like with the Broncos adding several pieces of talent, the Seahawks adding talent is not the end of the world.