Wow, this news is so incredibly shocking to me…not.
Defensive end Michael Bennett, after discussions with Seattle Seahawks GM John Schneider, has decided to test the waters of the free agent market, according to ESPN’s Adam Schefter.
While Bennett has said talks with Seattle have been positive, and that he 100 percent wants to return to Seattle, his desire for a big pay day has warranted his entrance into the free agent pool.
Bennett will undoubtedly garner a ton of interest from other teams, with standouts currently looking like the Raiders, Bears, and, per Mike Florio of Pro Football Talk, the 49ers.
That last name is surely not what the 12th Man wants to hear, and indeed the Seattle fans’ reaction on social media to the news has been a mixture of nonchalance and surprise. To some, Bennett’s not worth a big paycheck and can go elsewhere. To others, they believe the cutting of Red Bryant was supposed to help re-sign Bennett, and now that both are gone, concern has risen.
I always thought Bennett would be leaving, but the cutting of Bryant made me think for a second that maybe Bennett would be re-signed. Now, I’m back to my old feeling that Bennett isn’t coming back. And, as I said in my previous article on this subject, let him go. Other teams are going to be willing to pay more than Seattle, and Seattle can find the same amount of talent elsewhere in guys like Jared Allen or Everson Griffen.
Just wait and see the offers that will come in for Bennett’s services. They’ll be up there, and while the bidding war for Bennett is going on, Schneider can snag a diamond for an affordable price. And with Bennett gone, Red Bryant could get a restructured deal and return to the Seahawks.
I’m not going to beat this dead horse. Michael Bennett isn’t worth the money other teams are going to throw at him, and Seattle will be just fine without him. What this news says more to me is that other signings are around the corner.
Jeron Johnson and Lemuel Jeanpierre just got contract extensions, and with the recent increase in cap space, Seattle fans should be looking forward to Golden Tate’s re-signing as well. With Bennett’s announcement, Tate is now certainly Schneider’s number one priority, and Tate’s enthusiasm to returning should lead to a quick deal.
That re-signing is just the tip of the iceberg, though. Schneider needs to extend a bunch of other in-house contracts (Earl Thomas, Richard Sherman, and Russell Wilson to name a few), as well as guys like Doug Baldwin, Breno Giacomini, Paul McQuistan, and others.
Yes, there’s still the possibility that Bennett will return to Seattle, but I’m not holding my breath.