Golden Tate, the wide receiver the Detroit Lions signed in free agency, originally wanted to return to the Seattle but the Seahawks were not willing to pay.
“I really had no choice, I did my best to stay in the city of Seattle,’’ Tate said on the Bob and Groz Show on 710-AM Seattle on Tuesday.
Tate signed a five-year, $31 million deal to play for the Lions last week.
“Seattle offered a number that was laughable, it was laughable,’’ he said on the radio show.
In fact, he explained that in Detroit he will earn in one year what he could earn in two years in Seattle.
“In my eyes it was a no-brainer,’’ the 26-year-old Tate said. “Before my agent could finish the offer, I said, ‘I’m going to Detroit.’’’
He explained that by signing in Detroit, he can set up his family for the rest of their lives.
Tate loves the on-field opportunities that the Lions offer too. He’s all good with Calvin Johnson getting the attention from the No. 1 cornerbacks. He said he’s spoken with Matthew Stafford a few times, but hasn’t had a chance to talk with Johnson yet.
“There’s a lot of similarities I think to Seattle and Detroit, they’re both — not you guys any more — striving for something to happen,’’ Tate said. “I think the last time they won a championship was ’57. They’ve been waiting for something special to happen for a long time.
“The fans I hear are really, really passionate about their sports. You know that’s exciting because you know the type of player I am when I have (fans) cheering me on,’’ he added.
Tate said he’s excited about the opportunity with the Lions. The Jaguars and Jets were also interested in him
“I see a ton of upside for myself and the city of Detroit,’’ Tate said.
He’s disappointed that a vocal minority of Seahawks fans has been bashing him on social media for moving to Detroit.
“It’s kind of bothered me because I felt like I did give everything I possibly could to the city of Seattle,’’ Tate said. “I was in the community, I played my tail off every game, I helped bring the first ever Super Bowl to Seattle. At the end of the day, I even came out and said I’ll give you guys a discount. I think people took the discount to a 40-percent discount.’’
He said he knows football is a business and he had to do what was right for him.
Tate will get to know his new teammates and coaches when Lions' offseason workouts start on April 7.