DE Michael Bennett agrees to one-year, $5 million deal with the Seahawks, per league source.
— ProFootballTalk (@ProFootballTalk) March 14, 2013
Ladies and gentleman… here is your upgraded version of Jason Jones. This new model is healthier and recorded nine sacks last season.
Percy Harvin. Cliff Avril. Michael Bennett. With a draft to come. The Seahawks are playing free agency like a boss. They’re letting the market come to them then beating the crap out of it.
Cliff Avril doesn’t get the mega money he’s looking for, so he signs a two-year ‘prove it’ deal in Seattle. Why? Because he knows this team will give him the opportunity to do just that. Prove it.
Michael Bennett doesn’t get the mega money he’s looking for, so he signs a one-year ‘prove it’ deal in Seattle. Why? Because he knows this team will give him the opportunity to do just that. Prove it.
This isn’t the kind of reckless ‘dream team’ spending that created a mess in Philadelphia. This is cold, calculated domination. If these deals don’t work, they move on. The length of contract in both cases means neither player will have any impact on the teams ability to re-sign Russell Wilson, Richard Sherman, Earl Thomas or anyone else in the future.
This isn’t blowing $7m on inside linebackers (Miami), multi-millions on Paul Kruger and Desmond Bryant (Cleveland), over-paying for Ricky Jean-Francois, Donald Thomas and Eric Walden (Indianapolis), or giving Mike Wallace $30m guaranteed (Miami again). This is patience and execution. This is opportunism. Playing the market, not being played by the market.
And it helps when you can attract these kind of deals because you already possess a young, vibrant roster.
There will be naysayers who claim you don’t win anything in March. That is true. But again, this isn’t a reckless splurge chasing a dream. Other teams ploughed into free agency and as a collective washed away over $200m in one day. The Seahawks instead traded for Harvin and solved their greatest need (pass rush) with two of the best available free agents at a knock down price. And what an incentive for Avril and Bennett to make the most of their time in the Pacific North West.
Seattle might not win the Super Bowl next season. But they’re positioning themselves for one hell of a run.
So far they’ve added one of the best playmakers in the league, replaced Chris Clemons (ACL) with a top-tier free agent and now upgraded the nickel three-technique position swapping Jason Jones for Michael Bennett. I’m half expecting a trade for Darrelle Revis tomorrow for a stick of gum and some old socks.
Cross off another need on your list. By my count that leaves two — starting defensive tackle and WILL. Will Alan Branch now re-sign? It makes a lot of sense. Take a WILL in the draft? Again, it makes a lot of sense.
This confirms Seattle’s trust in the role Jones played in last year and almost certainly suggests they’ll continue to use size at defensive tackle for the base defense. While a multitude of teams fret over finding a quarterback, or a cornerback, or a pass rusher, or all three… Seattle’s biggest need is merely one giant space eater.
And what about that pick at #56? They can pretty much do whatever they want now. Offense. Defense. Kicker.
Win Forever? They just might.
Next the Seahawks are going to sign Leon Sandcastle.
— Michael Smith (@michaelsmith) March 14, 2013
Meanwhile in other news today…
Tyrann Mathieu still worries me
He appeared on NFL AM this morning and conducted a slightly bizarre interview. It all started well enough and to be fair he took a bit of a grilling and opened up about his drug use. Yet there were some really worrying quotes that slipped out near the end.
He admitted he needed to get away from Louisiana after the incident that led to the end of his college career, and he travelled to stay with Patrick Peterson’s family in Florida. Yet when asked about the possibility of being drafted by New Orleans, this was his response: “They’d have to come up with a pretty good plan to keep me out of harms way.”
He was then questioned about his four reps of the bench press at the combine (why even do it?) and he admitted it hadn’t been his focus going into the event. His focus had been “staying clean”. When pressed on this, he admitted he was still battling to keep away from drugs. That it was a “struggle” to stay away from marijuana. I find it pretty alarming that he’s still having issues there, to the point it seems to have impacted his combine preparation.
Near the end of the interview he said he’d been smoking weed from the age of 12-13 and was introduced to it by a family member. It just seems like this has been a part of his life for such a long time now, he’s really struggling to leave it behind. It’s ingrained into him. Almost like a compulsive smoker who struggles to quit because it’s become second nature.
You want to hear that he’s taken the wake-up call after his departure from LSU and kicked the drugs for good. You don’t want to hear he’s still battling those demons. A team isn’t going to want to babysit him through this struggle. He was a fun player to watch in college and I sincerely hope he can get his life and career back on track. But I can’t draft the guy on this evidence. If he can’t even be trusted to go back to Louisiana — his words — then I think you let somebody else deal with this. It’s a shame, but it is what it is.
Keenan Allen – what’s going on?
He didn’t work out at the combine. He was expected to work out at his pro-day today. But he didn’t. He didn’t do a single drill or work out.
I’m told Keenan Allen/WR/Cal is expected to run routes today at pro-day- which will start soon…did not run 40/short shuttle/3-cone/etc..
— Tony Pauline (@TonyPauline) March 14, 2013
UPDATE:Keenan Allen/WR/Cal did not run routes today. Did nothing. — Tony Pauline (@TonyPauline) March 14, 2013
This is starting to get worrying and it’s why I’ve had him as low as the late second round in previous mock drafts. You’re talking about a receiver who’s underdeveloped because the passing game in California was so inept. He basically spent a career running short digs and curls, constantly coming back to the quarterback. It’s hard to project how fast he is but I’m sceptical — he looks like a 4.5 guy to me which is unremarkable. And despite being billed as a big receiver, he’s one inch taller than DeAndre Hopkins with smaller hands and a smaller wingspan.
And now he’s a serious injury concern because this knee injury is just lingering and lingering. It wouldn’t surprise me at all if he drops like a stone. It’ll take a pretty big leap of faith to see him go as early as some are projecting.