The Seattle Seahawks have reached a one year agreement worth $5 million with former Tampa Bay Buccaneers defensive lineman, Michael Bennett. But is he the help that the Seahawks need for their defensive line?
There were two major areas of concern for the Seahawks that needed to be addressed this off-season. One being the passing game, the other being their pass rush. While the Seahawks ranked sixth overall in the NFL in passing yards allowed this past season, they failed to consistently get to and pressure the quarterback late in games. We saw this against Matthew Stafford and the Detroit Lions in week 8 as well as against the Miami Dolphins in week 12. The Seahawks should have closed out both of those games and left with victories. Seattle also failed to stop Matt Ryan’s pass that led to a game winning field goal in the 2012 divisional playoff game with less than a minute to go. Eliminating the amount of time these quarterbacks have to throw is key for the Seahawks to reach a Super Bowl.
Bennett is a four year player that went undrafted in 2009. Many teams looked past him because they believed that he lacked consistency on the field. He was picked up by the Seahawks in 2009 as an undrafted free agent. The Seahawks later waived Bennett that same year, where he was claimed off waivers by the Buccaneers.
During his four seasons with the Buccaneers, Bennett played in 50 out of the 64 games that his team played in. In his final season with the Buccaneers, Bennett did have problems with his shoulder, however it did not keep him out of games, and he played in all sixteen.
In 2012, Bennett had a breakout year recording nine sacks and three forced fumbles. Due to the injury to Gerald McCoy, Bennett was granted more playing time in 2012. If allowed to play more he may blossom into a star player. Bennett comes in at 6’4″ and 274lbs. He has not yet shown that he is a consistent pass rusher season after season, and while he lacked consistency in college, the 27 year old’s career is still young, and a fat paycheck can make quite the difference to certain players. With the nine sack breakout season he recorded during 2012, things are looking up for Bennett.
It is yet to be seen if Bennett will be able to repeat the type of season he had last year or if he is what the Seahawks are looking for. However, with the recent success that Pete Carroll and the Seattle management has had in filling holes in the roster, I put my complete faith in them that this move will help to bolster the Seahawks defensive line.