Seahawks Insider

DE Michael Bennett returns to Seattle: Leon Washington lands in New England

Post by Eric Williams on March 14, 2013 at 5:48 pm with 97 Comments »
March 14, 2013 5:48 pm

Michael Bennett
Michael Bennett

After taking a trip to Miami on today, Tampa Bay defensive end Michael Bennett is headed for Seattle, where he’ll sign a one-year, $5 million deal to join the Seahawks, according to Mike Florio of Pro Football Talk.

The Seahawks have not announced the signing, but I can confirm that Bennett is expected to sign after he passes a physical on Friday.

Bennett, 27, started his NFL career with the Seahawks as an undrafted rookie free agent who had a productive preseason for the Seahawks. However, he was surprisingly released on Oct. 10, 2009, and Tampa Bay claimed him off of waivers.

Bennett developed into a productive player for the Bucs, finishing with nine sacks and 41 tackles in 2012.

Seattle defensive coordinator Dan Quinn is familiar with Bennett from his time working as defensive line coach for the Seahawks in 2009 and 2010. Bennett, 27, would appear to fill Seattle’s need for a pass rusher from the defensive tackle position.

Also, Mike Reiss of ESPN Boston reports that the New England Patriots have signed former Seahawk Leon Washington to a one year deal.

Categories:
NFL free agency
Leave a comment Comments → 97
  1. FleaFlicker says:

    Eric, you are proving that on the Insider Blog, there truly is “no offseason”.

    Keep up the good work! I’ve been spending WAY too much time on here this week. But loving it!

  2. Woohoo, welcome back Bennett!!!

  3. hawkfaninoklahoma says:
  4. Dukeshire says:

    So, are they moving Red back inside (remember Quinn was the one who kicked him to DE originally) or are they releasing him?

  5. Sarcasticus says:

    Unless Bennett can be the gunner on punt coverage, I don’t like this.

  6. chuck_easton says:

    Sarcasticus,

    Bennett was signed to kick FG’s. It’s the only opening we had.

  7. Sarcasticus says:

    Why can’t he be the pashrushing DT paired with Mebane? I remember the disruption he caused in the middle during the preseason prior to them letting him go.

  8. Dukeshire says:

    They’ve signed 2 LDEs in as many days… Unless they see Red moving to 3-tech (with he and ‘Bane in the middle, a total bottleneck to run through) I can’t imagine they keep him at his salary.

  9. chuck_easton says:

    Duke and Sarcasticus,

    Has anyone in the NFL recently tried the trick of the moving line? I know it’s used in high school, but would it work?

    What I’m talking about is a D-line full of versatile players that can literally line up in any position on any given play. Keep the O guessing right up until the snap of the ball.

  10. GeorgiaHawk says:

    Now we can fill our biggest need, Guard/R-tackle. Guard/R-tackle, Guard/R-Tackle.

  11. Ewalters7354 says:

    Duke I agree.I said last nite about how tired I was of the Red Bryant experiment at DE.But I think if they release Red, the players will absolutely explode.

  12. hawkfaninOK – double-giddy…

    Eric is definitely busy and having met him the man a few times when the Hawks have visited Minnesota at the Dome the past years — he’s a much better person in real life than he is as our leader of the blog… and he’s a ***GREAT*** leader of our blog!!!

    Duke – I got your text and IDK. You never know anymore.

    Personally, I see a transition from being a power running team and playing smash mouth defense (easier to do with less talent, IMO) to being a high scoring team with athletes to get after it on defense (as the Harvin trade attests). I don’t know, but anything is possible these days! I’m not saying this is a certainty, but Mr. Happy could definitely score points and wasn’t afraid to score them at SC… now he’s getting that style back.

  13. Dukeshire,
    I would imagine that Bennett is replacing Jones as an interior pass rusher on passing downs, and he can also back up Red. I don’t think this means Red has been replaced. Red is valuable as a run defender, and if it weren’t for his foot issue, he would have continued his dominance in that role. I would look for Red to bounce back next year.

  14. GeorgiaHawk says:

    Red isn’t going anywhere soon.

    You have been trying to create this “Red will be expendable thing” for a while now. Aint going to happen!

  15. Dukeshire says:

    First off, o line was never this team’s biggest need. It may be all that’s left now, but certainly wasn’t more important than d line.

    Chuck – I don’t think so, but that’s interesting. My initial thought is that offensive line schemes are far more sophisticated in the NFL than high school or D-II / NAIA, etc… That is, the protections are more advanced than what player lines up in a given position.

  16. Agree with that, naz. I don’t see this as threatening big Red’s role. I could see Bennett likely playing RDE on rushing downs and shifting to DT on passing downs. I think Alan Branch might be the odd man out here.

  17. I like our O linemen. They are all young and improving together, Keep em all.

    In the draft, I see need for an OLB, DT, SS, and TE. (aint it nice to cross DE and WR off that list!!)

  18. SaigonSun says:

    Finally, something I can be happy about. Welcome back Mr. Bennett.Hope this time You’ll stay with us for very long time.

  19. Dukeshire says:

    naz – I love Red (not sure who Georgia is referring to with his comments) but one has to now wonder, Bennett and Avril both play LDE (although Avril could play the weak side should Clem not make it back) and Red is really one dimensional. My guess is that they put him inside at the 3. All I know is I with camp was starting today.

  20. SaigonSun says:

    When Clem comes back, Avril will play OLB

  21. Dukeshire says:

    Another thing to concider is Red’s injury history. Perhaps his torn plantar fascia was worse than we’re aware. I’m not going to pretend to know anything other than this team is F’ing loaded. Hell yeah!

  22. RDPoulsbo says:

    I think #2 TE would be the next biggest need now. I don’t think I could take another year of watching McCoy drop more catches than he makes. I’m also not very high on that poor pass protecting laundry magnet named Breno either.

  23. JazBadAzz says:

    Red is not going no where!!!!
    We need him, we are going to be really versatile on our D-line!
    Have you ever heard of a match up nightmare for offenses??? Well you will now!

  24. Below is a link to Red’s contract details – he is making alot of money this year – $2.6M more than Bennett.

    http://www.spotrac.com/nfl/seattle-seahawks/red-bryant/

  25. Sarcasticus says:

    I am really hoping Greene will be there at the second pick. Then I don’t care what they do. Unless…. what is Carlos Dansby asking for?

  26. I think we *could* upgrade the TE #2 and RT positions (and I am fine if we do that), but neither are huge issues.

    Bigger issue is WLB. Right now its Malcom Smith and nobody.

  27. Yeah, I think draft is a good spot to find WLB – Khaseem Greene, Jamie Collins or Sio Moore – any would fit and be awesome in the 2nd round.

    If we did that we would have a young, very productive LB group. The future is so bright, I gotta wear shades!

  28. I really like this signing. I remember being a little bummed when they let Bennett go the first time. Reason I like the signing now though is the depth and versatility it provides. When Clem, our “Leo”, went down last year … well you all watched.

    Cheers! Go Hawks!

  29. Dukeshire says:

    I’ll be studying this defense and their concepts this season, like a damn mental patient. With the talent Carroll has put together, this is going to be innovative and next level stuff. Even more-so than his Under front / Leo scheme.

  30. Here is what I know about this off season: I will not be surprised about ANYTHING. Who they sign and who the cut. I see this more as a sign that Clem is not going to be ready to go. If he isn’t then we are in good shape. If he is then we are in great shape.

    I think Duke references it in the last post- but anyone think you might see Irvin running at OLB for a few plays here or there?

    I also think they can find a decent LB in the draft, They also still have Toomer from the practice squad. I thought he looked decent last year in the Pre-season and could probably play decent on ST to add to his value!!

  31. I don’t think they change their line configuration Duke. Dan Quinn was part of the implementation of Red @ RDE he was also a major proponent in positioning Michael Bennett in a similar position to Jason Jones when we first “experimented with Bennett.

    I would imagine Bennett will fill the departure of Jason Jones rather than bump
    Red to 3 tech. In a base formation.

  32. Duke,
    I love Red, too…who doesn’t, he’s awesome. And I see where you’re headed. However, I actually think that Pete and John decided they couldn’t count on Clem for the start of the season, and they weren’t sure if Irvin would be ready to start. So, they grabbed Avril to compete with Irvin for the starting Leo job, assuming he’ll probably win it because of his ability and experience. However, the Leo usually lines up as the RDE…well, more specifically, the LEO lines up on the weak side, which could be LDE depending on the offensive formation. But, let’s assume that the Leo mostly lines up at RDE…well, even though Avril lined up at LDE at Detroit, I have to assume that they don’t see him as a LDE in their base defense because he’s just not suited to play the 5 tech DE spot on the strong side. So, I think they’re counting on Avril making the transition to the RDE spot so he can be their starting LEO while Clem recovers, and Irvin will compete with him. Then, on passing downs, they can move Avril to LDE with Irvin at RDE if they feel Avril is better on the left side. I think they feel Avril is versatile enough to play either side, despite where he played at Detroit. You don’t grab a speed rusher who is 6-3 260 and ask him to play the strong side DE in our system.
    So the way I look at it is that we didn’t sign two LDEs…we signed a LEO, and we signed an inside pass rusher who can back up the 5 tech spot.
    What would blow up my theory is if they are going to change up their scheme and use two smaller DEs. But I don’t see that happening.

  33. I won’t be surprised to see Clemons on the PUP to start the year.

  34. Me either, blocis. It doesn’t mean he’s gone though. Does our front office rock or what!

  35. RDPoulsbo says:

    It’s pretty clear that Carroll wants Clemons to stay, so he will, but I’d bet he starts on the PUP as well.

    I could actually see Irvin lining up at Will in obvious passing downs so he can shoot whichever gap that happens to be open. Red will probably be rotated out more, which isn’t all that bad of an idea. In any case, we’re likely to see a very different front 4 scheme than we’ve seen in the past.

  36. montanamike2 says:

    We are now officially a nightmare on both sides of the ball. Does anyone know if winter rates are going in hotels in Feb?

  37. I think I remember reading last year where some of the salary of Clem was based on sacks (of which he won’t get if he plays early). Anyone else remember this?

  38. “doesn’t”

  39. montanamike2 says:

    Ewalters7354 thanks for that link.
    Hiring Quinn was an upgrade on the D, he’s already paying dividens.

  40. FleaFlicker says:

    We’re in a good position here. Arguably we can get through a season without Clem (hoping not – but a major injury at his age can be an incredibly difficult road back). And if/when Clem comes back, he can be eased back into action and hopefully hit his stride in December and beyond.

    And for those of you who love Clem and hate Tarvaris, found this little web gem circa 2009. AKA, the “Choke Slam”:
    http://www.jest.com/video/875/tarvaris-jackson-choke-slam

  41. I doubt this will affect Red as far as him being released. What I think this does is set us up to have two D-line personnel groupings, with little dropoff from either. I think the mix-n-match potential is outstanding.

    The only thing I’m still a little unsettled with all this, is who is going to replace Clemmons? I doubt he’ll be back to start the season, and no one on the roster is a natural RDE that can both stop the run and pressure the QB. Irvin has a high ceiling but he really needs to learn some moves that go beyond his natural speed and athletic ability, which is what he’s relied on up until now. I can’t say I know enough about Avril or Bennett to judge their capability at RDE but hopefully between what we have now and the draft we will end up with a very nice rotation ala the Giants a few years back.

    And hell who knows…maybe one of the vets out there will sign with us at a bargin. Osi can you see? :)

  42. DanielleMND says:

    “Bigger issue is WLB. Right now its Malcom Smith and nobody.”

    Mike Morgan looked solid in his one start last season.

  43. montanamike2 says:

    What bold move are we going to pull off next? This affects the draft significantly.

  44. Anyone want to try and predict what is next?

    Signing – trade – cuts?

    buy a drink for someone who gets it right :)

  45. I think Red Bryant’s entire salary is guaranteed for this year so he’s not getting cut. But he won’t be around next year when his salary goes to $7.5m.

    The only way Avril and Bennett would have signed with Seattle is if they were told they would be able to start or play the majority of snaps. They signed short-term “prove it” deals so they can go for huge money after. The only way they can “prove it” is they are on the field.

    Maybe there is a trade with NE in the works for Bryant. They had interest in him last year. Otherwise, I don’t see what his place at DE is.

  46. RD you better check your stats if you think McCoy drops more than he catches. He caught 67% of his targets and Zach was at 71%.

  47. jawpeace says:

    My question is just where are the Hawks at in relation to their cap numbers?

  48. Dukeshire says:

    naz – I dig where you’re coming from. Thing is, Seattle didn’t run as many “under” fronts last year as they have in Carroll’s previous two years (in fact, they’ve played less each season since Carroll got here). And only in an under is there a Leo position. Simply being on the weak side doesn’t make one a “Leo”. That said, it’s entirely possible they move any one of Red, Avril, Bennett inside in a given situation. And, we know from Carroll’s previous statement that he sees Irvin as his “Clay Matthews” from his USC days (which is the Leo. Or, at USC they called it Elephant.) So, at some point they have to commit the base set to the Under, again. To me, this seems evident. That slots Irvin (on paper, with Clem and Avril if necessary). After that, where best to place the remaining players without placing them in new or positions they’ve not played. Sitting here in March, I feel it’s unlikely Carroll wants to get smaller in the middle, which moving any of these guys inside (Red not withstanding) does. That feels counter-intuitive. It’s suddenly a crowded DE roster.

    Only from the outside can we speculate, but this I do know: Carroll has a very clear idea and direction for this line that has nothing to do with what any of us think.

  49. Dukeshire says:

    HawksKD – I’m speculating. As I’ve said, I have my ideas but don’t pretend to know what Carroll has in mind. But we do know this: Red is a situational player only (vs the run) and that is a limiting factor at DE. And again, I want him to stay. Somewhere.

  50. Ewalters7354 says:

    Bruce Irvin should really benefit from having 3 good pass rushers (Clem, Cliff, and Bennett) and Dan Quinn showing him the ropes.

  51. bbnate420 says:

    If Obo is released as I expect, the Hawks should have approx. 4.5 mil left in cap space. I would think they might have to release someone else to sign a kicker and the draft picks, but I’m done making predictions about the Twins and this off-season.

    Actually, I have one more. Regardless of Red’s position or play on the field, he WILL NOT be released by the Hawks this off-season. Maybe they try to trade him or he restructures to help the team? All of Red’s 6.6 base salary is guaranteed in 2013. His cap number is 7.6 mil if kept in 2013. If they release him after June 1, they have to add half of the remaining 4 mil signing bonus to the 2013 cap. That’s a 8.6 mil cap number. If they release him before June 1, they have to add all 4 mil of the signing bonus for a 10.6 mil cap number. So, his cap number goes UP if they release him. No point to that. 2014 is a different story. Bennett is on a one year deal so, I would presume that they make a choice between Bennett and Red after 2013.

    BobbyK, Clemons does have 4 mil in sack-based escalators in his contract, but I couldn’t find exactly how they are figured in.

  52. ryanryan says:

    i’m just shocked how much activity we are experiencing in FA this year. I have such a crush on MB and was surprised when we cut him way back when, he was a guy that PC would have NEVER cut…so glad he’s back.

    hopefully we recoup our #1 by trading flynn…bahahaha. seriously though, we need to keep flynn until he becomes a problem child.

    i’m only so-so on avril but if you look at it as an even swap for jones i’d give it a go this year…thats obviously not looking at dollars, just players.

    stoked on harvin and bennett.

    JUST noticed the spell check…

  53. raymaines says:

    pabuwal, AT 7:49 PM, “The only way Avril and Bennett would have signed with Seattle is if they were told they would be able to start or play the majority of snaps.”

    I think you’re totally wrong on this one. T-Jack aside, it would be totally out of character for PC to say something like that.

  54. ryanryan says:

    i agree with nate, red stays…heart and soul baby, without it you are the eagles.

  55. raymaines says:

    And about releasing Red Bryant…

    Some guy in an office that wears a suit knows and cares about the cap numbers, but JS&PC are going to keep #79 because he can play. The cap will benefit because of that, but JS&PC don’t really care.

  56. I’m so jacked up and amped up about our team right now!
    I can’t believe PC/JS pulled it off!
    Harvin, Avril, and now Bennett? And at good value to boot.
    Seattle is getting some unprecedented love from the free agents.
    The rest of the NFL sees what we got going on and want to be a part of it. They want to guzzle the kool-aid from Pete’s pitcher and all that.
    Our front office rocks, baby! In PC/JS we trust.
    We’re not worthy!

  57. I predicted red moves inside a few months ago, and everyone told me I was wrong… I still see him going inside, and the last few days only reinforce my thinking. Just cuz he didn’t do well in his first year or two at it doesn’t mean he hasn’t grown in that ability. I personally never thought he got much of a collapse on the edge going. But I think he could disrupt the front…

    But, what do I know?….

  58. I’ll be disappointed if Red isn’t starting this fall as he has for the last few years. When he’s healthy, nobody makes it around that edge (with the possible exception of Adrian Peterson.)

  59. JS hasn’t been acing very Ted Thompsonish this offseason.

  60. Thank goodness we changed to the new uniforms last year. Look at all the talent that it’s bringing in! ;)

    I did stop by the Clink today as my brother was visiting from Louisville, KY. Picked him up an away, throwback Largent jersey. Damn that thing looks good. Told him to show his colors early this year before the 30 million new Seahawk fans jump on board the bus (they’re welcome aboard). For myself I was hoping to find a throwback Easley but no luck.

    What a problem to have. What to do with all of our edge rushers?! Compared to what we’ve seen in the past where we’ve begged from our knees for anyone we hoped for to come here, our current situation is magnificent and comical. They are banging down our door to play for the Seahawks. With regards to our DL situation, often injuries will sort out part of that equation. The beauty now is that we have the depth to put someone in who is 100% instead of partially gimped. Still think they will add an interior lineman to this group.

  61. DJammmer says:

    I think this is the most important contract to extend now:
    http://goo.gl/r1Sgf

  62. DJammmer says:

    I do worry in the back of my mind a little… that with their old cap guy Idzik going to the Jets… someone forgot to backfill him? Great signings so far (whens the last time the hawks had this many top signings week one of FA? Kerney/Graham? – sarc) I just hope someone is managing the cap for next year, b/c you know Optimus Prime’s ego will not let him play out the last year of his contract. He’ll hold out if he’s not paid before 2014. And by then, sherman might be gone. Somone just assume me that someone is doing Idzik’s job, and is planning to retain most of the young talent.

  63. DJammmer says:

    ps. you know what other team had a problem with TOO MANY DEs? The Superbowl(s) Giants. And you never heard anyone complaing with them about having too many.

  64. Southendzone says:

    Maybe Idzik didn’t leave the windows password on his Excel files that had all the Hawks cap information and now they are just buying whoever they want cause the new guy has no clue what to do.

  65. GeorgiaHawk says:

    I’m a huge Big Red fan however the one thing I have noticed about him is he often gets worn out by the end of the game. Conditioning? Or just being too big? Whatever the case I have noticed that also with some of our other D-lineman too. Perhaps that helps explain why this defense had a difficult time stopping other teams at the end of the games last year. I don’t want to see Red go, but I would like to see his minutes cut back so I’m glad to see the FO adding more bodies to the D-line to help keep them all fresh for the 4th quarter.

  66. montanamike2 says:

    GeorgiaHawk i noticed how worn out he got at the end of games too, keep him fresh with more bodies. SF is trying hard to keep pace in the “arms race”, but they have to cut good players to make some cap room and they have aging veterans who are really good players but getteing older fast. Now that we cherry picked the best FA’s they have the leftovers to choose from. What inside knowledge does Quinn have for this draft? Are we close to being a true dream team but properly built instead with young studs instead of stopgaps like we always had before?

  67. Dukeshire says:

    Are people complaining here about too many DEs? I think it’s just the opposite.

  68. montanamike2 says:

    Good morning Duke. Are we done with FA’s this week or will something be announced today?

  69. Excited to be a Seahawks fan today!

  70. Ruskell is smart.

  71. CDHawkFan says:

    I can see it now, we go 18 – 0 and are 42 point favorites in the SB. The night before the SB, The G 8 world leaders call on Russell Wilson to solve the North Korean nuclear crisis. Matt Flynn steps in and we beat the Broncos 43 – 0. The Raiders then give up the number one overall pick in 2014 for Flynn.

  72. ChrisHolmes says:

    “Personally, I see a transition from being a power running team and playing smash mouth defense (easier to do with less talent, IMO) to being a high scoring team with athletes to get after it on defense (as the Harvin trade attests). I don’t know, but anything is possible these days! I’m not saying this is a certainty, but Mr. Happy could definitely score points and wasn’t afraid to score them at SC… now he’s getting that style back.”

    I think Pete had a vision for his team long before he was ever hired by anyone (my own believe from reading several articles when he was first hired back into the NFL). I think we’re seeing a coach who learned from his mistakes the first time around with NE and the Jets. I think part of what we’re seeing is the result of a coach who didn’t feel like he had enough time to implement his plan totally at either stop along the way.

    One think I believe is that Pete’s plan was to play whatever style of football best fit his players abilities the moment he arrived to coach the team, to give them a chance to win, until he could acquire the talent he needed to play the brand of football he really wanted to play.

    A lot of coaches come into the NFL and regardless of the talent on the team when they arrive, they immediately instill “their system” and want it run. And with the talent on a team like that – if the talent doesn’t fit well – in a first or second year, teams can really struggle because they lack the correct players and talent to run a certain system. If coaches aren’t given enough time to make it work, they’re fired before they can acquire all the players necessary to run their system.

    I think Pete knew this, and decided that instead of trying to fit square pegs into a round hole, he’d play a square-peg style of game until he had enough round-hole players to play the game his way. That gives the team a chance to win enough games to keep the coach and GM off the hot-seat while they are acquiring the players and talent they need to run the system the way they really want.

    I think Pete wanted to play USC offense from day-1, but knew he didn’t have the talent at any of the positions necessary (especially QB) to make it happen. I think Pete’s approach on offense has been one of necessity; he’s been conservative on purpose because he didn’t trust his players to make plays. We’ve been a run-first, conservative, ball-control offense because that’s the easiest and SAFEST offense to make work at the NFL level and still give you a chance to win games every week.

    But we all saw what happened as the season progressed with RW: Pete got more confident that the kid could be trusted, realized he also has a Peyton Manning-like work ethic, great arm, accuracy, smarts, and is as cool as they come under pressure, and seeing all of that and watching him progress every week, they took the training wheels off. We all saw the results in those three high scoring games to end the season, and then the playoff run.

    Pete has a vision. I like it. I think he’s been trying to turn this team into USC North since day one. But acquiring talent takes time. We’re way better off than we were when he first arrived, and we have a lot more Pete-Guys now than ever before.

    I think Pete and JS were really smart about how they went about this (even though I was really concerned there for over a year because it seemed like they didn’t care about the most important position – they really did). These two guys kept themselves off the hot seat and put it together over time. And yes, we know Allen is more or less a patient owner, but he did dump Mora after a year. Everyone has their limits. I really believe a lot of what Pete and JS did was to “win now” while “rebuilding for the future”. These guys figured out how to make both goals work – and they did it because they approached it completely different than most teams do. Instead of running a “system” from day-1, they built game-plans that fit their personnel.

    To me, that’s a smart move at any level of football.

  73. CD – Sounds good to me. Any scenario where the Seahawks win the Super Bowl is good in my world, even with T-Jack at Q-Back.

  74. ChrisHolmes – Agreed.

  75. So, we have to be keeping Branch right, I mean who do we have at the tackles now, Mebane and two 2nd year guys? On this note, it will be exciting to see what we do with all these rushers, especially when Clemons finally gets healthy, yikes, QB’s will definately be looking forward to playing this team.

  76. hawkfaninoklahoma says:

    tru, i really believe red is headed back inside

  77. raymaines says:

    If there is anything we know about PC it’s that he’s honest with the media. Vague but honest. A couple of times this week he’s said the Seahawks will continue to be a power first, last, and always type of team. I can’t see him changing things too much just because he has a high end QB and versatile slot receiver.

  78. Dukeshire says:

    montanamike – After this week, I have no idea. lol From Schneider saying that it’s important to be patient in FA this year, then turn right around and sign the two best young DEs available, I’m just going to sit back and enjoy.

  79. GeorgiaHawk says:

    Well said ChrisHolmes.

  80. Dukeshire says:

    raymains – I tend to agree with that. With Harvin here now, stacking the box to contain Lynch isn’t a viable option for most defenses.

  81. CDHawkFan says:

    In a show of extreme confidence, which the media calls ‘cocky’, PS/JS trade the #1 overall in 2014 for the second to last pick in round #7 to prove they can find talent any where, any time.

    Stay thirsty my friends.

  82. GeorgiaHawk says:

    From SI.com.-

    Bennett recorded nine sacks for the Buccaneers last season, plus had 48 QB hurries (No. 3 for all ends). He reportedly met with the Dolphins earlier Thursday and had scheduled time to visit Detroit — only to sign up with Seattle.

    Just how good could Seattle’s pass-rush be now? Avril, Bennett, Clemons and Irvin combined for 38 sacks last season.

    Grade: A. Again, the only aspect of this that’s even close to a negative is that Seattle cannot possibly play all of these pass-rushers at the same time. Other than that, this is an absolute steal for a team that just keeps adding talented players.

  83. Dukeshire says:

    As of Tuesday, here are your SB 48 odds. This will likely won’t be updated until Monday, simply because there isn’t a lot of action (relatively) on the NFL in March.

    http://www.vegasinsider.com/nfl/odds/futures/

  84. Ewalters7354 says:

    ChrisHolmes, great post.

  85. banosser says:

    Yes we (FO) have made SF look like a red headed step child in FA… They (SF) are waiting for the draft to add a lot of talent… 5 picks in the first 3 rounds… I’m flabbergasted (psyched) by what JS/PC have done so far… but SF is still a monster.. which of course we’ll castrate in season.. but still..

    DT, OLB, RT, OG

  86. Sarcasticus says:

    I don’t know if Red can play DT. He plays too high for my liking, which is helpful when he puts his shoulder into the offensive tackle and rides him to the outside to help contain the run, but it doesn’t help with push in the middle. Just look at Mebane. He looks like he is built from the ground up and can hold the point of attack well.

    Of course, my observation could be defined by watching him play a different technique altogether. Maybe moving him back inside, he would play lower. I don’t know. He tends to get push on field goal attempts, but that isn’t against a real offensive line.

  87. bbnate420 says:

    We may not sign Branch, but LET’S REMEMBER that the Twins still have at least 8 draft picks. Yes, the DRAFT! It will provide at least a few contributors, if the last 3 years are any guide.

    I am surely more optimistic about this Hawks team than any other I have followed since 1992, when I started following the team, but let’s not start fitting our SB rings quite yet. It’s still March 15. Enjoy the ride, don’t set yourself up for depression.

  88. bbnate420 says:

    The fact that Red is great at blocking kicks doesn’t transfer to playing inside against offenses. He’s not facing a starting line. You only have to break through a crease and then get high to block the kick, which Red certainly can do. You have to stay low until you can get past the line when rushing from DT against an offense. Not the same. We’ll se what they do. It will be interesting.

  89. GeorgiaHawk says:

    Thanks Duke.

  90. Thanks BBNate!

  91. ChrisHolmes (CH), ditto (but mostly about the offense). But I also kinda get something of what Duke is saying too (mostly about the defense). Not presuming I know much about what’s going on actual football-wise, but I do see some interesting things in prior seasons stats.

    The season prior to PC/JS getting here, Mora’s SEA had the 30th ranked weighted offense while only facing the 28th hardest schedule of defenses (per Football Outsiders: http://www.footballoutsiders.com/stats/teamoff2009 .) PC/JS kept Hasselbeck et al in ’10 and their weighted offense rose to 27th while facing the 16th hardest defensive schedule. In ’11 they got TJax, etc. and while facing the 2nd hardest defensive schedule their weighted offense rose again to 19th. Last season with RW @ QB, while facing the 3rd toughest defensive schedule their weighted offense ranked first. I think CH pretty much nailed what PC is doing on offense, but I think PC/JS are doing something different on defense.

    When Mora had the team in ’09 his weighted defense ranked 31st while facing the 28th hardest offensive schedule. Bradley and Quinn were playing the 4-3 Over DL for Mora with Kerney/Redding/LoJac on the left and Tapp/Reed on the right. That DL ranked 11th vs the run and 29th in sack rate. Mora had Tru, Wilson, Lucas, Jennings and T.Fisher for CBs. SEA’s weighted defense was 10th vs the run and 30th vs the pass in ’09.

    When PC/JS came in ’10 they lost or let go of all of their prior DEs. Except for Tru and Jennings they got new CBs (except that Babs played CB instead of safety.) Cleaned house – rebuilt. PC/JS picked up C.Clemons (a LDE from PHI) and played him @ Leo (Elephant?) in the Under front. Quinn moved Red out to left end. The weighted defense dropped to last vs the 31st hardest offensive schedule. The DL performance dropped to 26th vs the run but improved to 28th in sack rate. Nothin to holler about.

    In ’11 the DL started playing a more balanced front and improved to 11th vs the run but dropped back to 28th in sack rate. The weighted defense improved to 9th vs the 30th hardest offensive schedule. Last season the DL played even less Under front and ranked 21st vs the run and sack rate. Meanwhile, the weighted defense rose to 7th vs the 15th hardest offensive schedule.

    I think PC knows this defense and plays it like a fiddle.

  92. Ran outta time and had to close previous post early. I think PC/Quinn can take their scheme and manipulate it to suit their players, still using their defensive scheme and adjusting it to suit their players rather than playing whatever other scheme might best fit their current players. I’m kinda thinking they’ll play the first couple downs with RB/MB on the left end and CA/BI on the right – and in the Under to make CA’s/BI’s L to R transition easier. If you go to PFF’s “signature stats” for 4-3 DEs and look at the ranking of the right side pass rushing productivity (PRP) you’ll see that CA ranks 1st. Of course it’s a statistical “error” because he only got 2 snaps on that side and got 1 QB hurry. When CC played for PHI and got a few snaps on the right side his PRP was very low. It was the Under front that turned CC from having the 19th best PRP in ’09 to having the 7th best PRP in ’10 of all 4-3 DEs. In ’11 playing less of the Under front CC’s PRP dropped to 9th. Then in ’12 playing even less of the Under front CC’s PRP dropped further to 16th (BI’s PRP ranked 10th, MB’s PRP ranked 13th and CA’s PRP ranked 40th.) PC/Quinn will get the most out of their players using the most apt variation of their system and plugging their players into spots that will best usse their talents.

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