As if the Seattle Seahawks don’t already have things going in their direction this offseason, they got another step closer to defending their NFL title on Monday with the re-signing of defensive end Michael Bennett.
Bennett, who was considered to be one of the top pending free agents, landed a four-year, $34-million deal that will keep him in Seattle after winning his first Super Bowl with the Seahawks this past season.
There was heavy speculation leading up to the start of free agency (March 11) that Bennett, whose brother Martellus plays for the Chicago Bears, would take his talents to the Windy City to join his sibling. Those rumors were obviously squashed after word broke that Bennett had chosen to re-join the Seahawks.
Now back in Seattle, Bennett will be featured along a defensive line that was among the best in the NFL last season. The former undrafted player out of Texas A&M flew under the radar in 2013 as one of the most dominant 4-3 defensive ends to grace the gridiron. On top of racking up 11 sacks and 51 quarterback hurries, Bennett was a menace against the run, living in opposing backfields.
With a shiny new $34-million deal in hand, Bennett is already the biggest steal of the 2014 NFL Free Agency period. Not only did the Seahawks get one of the most disruptive defensive linemen in the NFL, but they got him for a reasonable price. If he’s only going to cost the team an average of $8 million per year while giving them elite production against the pass and run, I’d call that a win.
The reigning champions aren’t losing many key pieces to free agency, and bringing Bennett back only lessens the blow. If this is a sign of things to come for the Seahawks this offseason, we might just be looking at our first back-to-back champs since the New England Patriots pulled it off in 2005.