Seahawks Insider

Official: Cliff Avril signs with the Seahawks

Post by Eric Williams on March 14, 2013 at 3:16 pm with 85 Comments »
March 14, 2013 3:16 pm

The Seattle Seahawks officially announced the signing of defensive end Cliff Avril to a multi-year deal this afternoon.

Seattle head coach Pete Carroll and general manager John Schneider talked to reporters about the deal, and what role Avril will play defensively

Both Carroll and Schneider raved about Avril’s versatility as an edge rusher, and also said that Seattle’s new defensive end has the ability to drop in coverage from his playing days at Purdue.

Schneider remarked that what makes Avril unique is his ability to rush from the left side of the defense, and also his ability to work his way back to the quarterback after a speed rush.

Here’s what Carroll had to say when I asked him how Avril’s arrival affects Chris Clemons coming off of ACL knee surgery.

“He’s making a great recovery,” Carroll said about Clemons. “We’re definitely not going to rush Chris in any way. We want to bring him back and not play him until he’s perfectly healthy and ready to go. (The Avril deal) doesn’t affect him at all. Chris is a premier player for us, and we expect him to come roaring back. And we just want to make sure that the urgency isn’t such that we rush is rehab. And so that’s a top priority for us.

“But he feels that he has a chance to make it back at the start of the year. We’ll find out. And we’ll keep our fingers crossed on that.”

Carroll said that the team will use all three edge rusher in Avril, Clemons and Bruce Irvin on third down and in different sub packages.

“We’re going to mix the play of these guys to keep them fresh and keep them strong,” Carroll said. “And really keep the tempo of our past rush at a peak – that’s really important to us.”

NFL free agency
Leave a comment Comments → 85
  1. FleaFlicker says:

    Stoked for the second time this week!

    Love Mr. Happy’s mindset that Clem will be depth to be added to the lineup when we get near the playoffs. Always compete!

  2. HeinieHunter says:

    Tell me if I’m thinking wrong but Harvin & Avril
    are two big check marks on our “things to do before next season” list. JS&PC rock!

  3. These guys are pretty honest and I’m glad to see Clem still being kept in the plans. It would be great to get to mid-season to have Irvin, Avril, AND Clem on the field. As they said, if nothing esle, to keep each other fresh more often in pass rush situations, too.

  4. CDHawkFan says:

    I was combing the Detroit papers to see reactions and they haven’t said a word. At least Jones had a few thing written about him in the Seattle papers and he was only here 1 year, with about 30 less sacks to boot.

  5. Basically, they are going to use Avril the way they used Clem – we all saw Clem drop back every once in awhile. I can’t believe I might be excited about our DE position. Crazy. Take care of 3-tech and lets print the Super Bowl tickets!

  6. I’m so glad Mr. Happy is in charge of this organization. He’s got a pretty good Robin (Schneider), too. I wonder if Mr. Happy gives Schneider rides around Seattle in the Batmobile? Has anyone there ever seen them in a black and funny looking car together?

  7. Dukeshire says:

    For all the talk about Kam moving to Will (won’t happen) what about Irvin there in some packages? Avril at LDE, Clem RDE, and Irvin “blitzing” from Will? You’d still have Wright and Wagner at Sam and Mike, respectively… That’s fun to think about.

  8. RDPoulsbo says:

    No, but I’m sure Paul (Alfred) Allen keeps the corporate batplane ready should they need it.

  9. hawkfaninoklahoma says:

    duke, like that idea. what about putting him in the middle and move him presnap?

  10. Yes, Duke. Agree 100%. Mr. Happy is so far ahead of us in those spots that we know we’re going to have a fun 2013. I can’t believe how much fun it is to be this excited for the start of a season!

  11. ‘multi year deal’? I read it was a two year deal, which is technically multi – I know. Is it more than two years?

  12. I have so much faith in Mr. Happy (and his sidekick) right now that they could NOT get a 3-tech and I would still be glad… as I’d know we’d probably see more Mebane at NT to anchor the middle with guys like Irvin and Avril flying around to get pressure. When you have another anchor like Red (combined w/Mebane) it really opens you up if he chooses. Nothing would surprise me anymore (in a good way).

  13. Leon Washington to the Pats. Good Luck to a Good Guy! Does this mean that Golden Tate will get a chance to field punts? That would be great!

  14. JazBadAzz says:

    Our pass rush is about to be best we ever had!
    Welcome back Micheal Bennett!

  15. PFT is reporting that the Seahawks have signed DE Michael Bennett to a one year, 5 million dollar contract.

  16. vichawkfan says:

    Sack contest next year…winner gets a long-term big contract or extension.

  17. bird_spit says:

    Okay..hawks win division, and its only March. Holy crap..if that is true about Bennett.

  18. chuck_easton says:

    Ok, now you can officially put me in the shocked and giddy catagory.

    Avril and Bennett? So, Seattle has decided to go the route of ‘if you sign everyone, then nobody else can sign anyone!’

    Ok, works for me.

    Also, creates alot of competition. Which of these D-linemen want to stay around? Only room for so many. Nobody is guaranteed a job. Go big or go home.

    So this whole Always Compete thing isn’t just a snappy slogan after all.

    Red better come back in fighting shape. Mebane has some good bodies lining up next to him. Irvin, Suggs and the other youngsters better not get too comfortable. May the best men win and thanks to everyone else for coming out!

  19. bird_spit says:

    I suspect Red better get his butt lower, he is playing DT or bust.

  20. Could be Quinn and Pete feel Reds days outside are not needed anymore and he goes inside with Mebane on 1st and 2nd down.

  21. RDPoulsbo says:

    Wow, this is going to be interesting to see how they use all of these DEs. This is just getting insane.

  22. FleaFlicker says:

    Just got a ESPN Score Center update. Looks like Bennett signing is true.

    Not a bad pickup! 6’7″ with nine sacks last year. 27 years old. A lot to like here.

    Got to hand it to Schneider this week. And it’s still only Thursday!

  23. For all you Aggies out there…about Michael Bennett: WHHOOOOOOOOOOOP!

  24. FleaFlicker says:

    Actually he’s 6’4″ and 274

  25. I know, I’m the only Aggie on the board but hey! This is awesome stuff! Do we even need to draft anyone now??? ;-)

  26. FleaFlicker says:

    And a 16 game starter last year…dang, this team is getting scarier by the day!

  27. chuck_easton says:

    So, I’m guessing Seattle is going to go with the tried and true 5-2-4 alignment? :)

    The Bantam team I coach uses that and it’s great.

  28. what is going on around here? ??? are we suddenly somehow the Yankees?

    this is sort of uncharted territory for this Seattle sports fan.

    can we start the season tomorrow? wow.

  29. chuck_easton says:

    Salary Cap? We don’t need no stinkin Salary Cap!


    Great technique for a DE, can shift to inside, as good or better than Clemons against run, and a dynamic pass rusher as well. Love this Move! This D line is going to Rock!

  31. I’m sure Nate will be here in a moment to tell us exactly where we stand with respect to the salary cap. The dude must actually work for the Seahawks or something.

    Ok, so we’ve taken care of the pass rush…what’s next!!! :-)

  32. Really? Wow.

    I love it!


  33. DE Michael Bennett agrees to one-year, $5 million deal with the Seahawks, per league source.

  34. I’m still hoping we pick up Ryan Swope with our 2nd round pick! ;-)

  35. chuck_easton says:

    Well Tom, I’m glad you asked.

    In an unprecedented move, the Seattle Seahawks organization just signed the entire Dallas Cowboys cheerleading squad, and half the gold rush girls from SF.

    Ladies, you want to keep wearing that skimpy little outfit on cold Seattle Sunday’s? You gotta compete!!! It’s the Seahawks way.

  36. freedom_X says:

    Bennett coming back? Erasing one of the worst mistakes of the Ruskell era?

    This kind of craziness is what fuels nutty fan trade or signing scenarios. A realist will say this kind of thing won’t happen, but these type of signings give that win-the-lottery type hope to any fan concocting a dream scenario.

    Maybe Flynn will get traded for a #1 after all…

  37. Chuck, now that’s a competition that I want to watch!

  38. JazBadAzz says:

    I know you can’t win a superbowl in march but DAMMIT I FEEL LIKE WE ARE ABOUT TOO!!!

  39. From Tampa Buccaneers blog:

    “letting your best defensive end walk over $5 million? A key piece to your number one run defense and the team’s leading sack artist? A player just entering his prime and still improving? This is ridiculous. Meanwhile, the Seattle Seahawks have added Cliff Avril, Michael Bennett and Percy Harvin this offseason. To a team that came within seconds of getting to the NFC Championship game. While their only significant loss is a kick returner. Yeah. That’s scary.”

  40. Ok, so what does this mean? 1 year deal? Is Red in trouble? I sure hope not because we need him, especially if he is 100%. I don’t think that’s it.

    Why the 1 year deal?

  41. HeinieHunter says:

    Hawks FO shows Mariners how a first class operation runs. JS & PC…wow. WTF will they do next?

  42. re Bennett: WTF is going on this off season? I feel like I am in the Seahawk twilight zone. Go Seahawks!

  43. I think we now have so much edge rush, its almost too much.

  44. banosser says:

    Holy crap

  45. Keeps ‘em all fresh and ready to kick some QB butt!

  46. Sarcasticus says:

    They should have never let him go in the first place. I guess he will line up at DT and push the pocket. 5 million dollar idiot tax for letting him go in the first place…not too bad.

    3Rd down pass rush should be pretty nice.

  47. DanielleMND says:

    Two days ago, half of you were complaining because you thought the Harvin deal would prevent getting D-line help, and now we have Avril and Bennett. Okay, I must confess I didn’t see this happening, either.

  48. CDHawkFan says:

    ‘Is this heaven?’

    ‘No, it’s – it’s Seattle’

    ‘I could’ve sworn it was Heaven’

  49. JazBadAzz says:

    I bet Gus Bradley is kinda thinking he should have waited one more yr to take that HC job! LOL Good luck anyways Gus!

  50. FleaFlicker says:

    Bennett’s one year deal at the age of 27 = playing to get paid

    Nothing wrong with that


    Michael Bennett too?! Good GAWD awmighty, this is just too damned awesome for words!

    All I wanted was Michael Bennett and some halfway decent body at DE! And I got Percy Harvin, Bennett, and Avril on my favorite team!!

    I am stunned.

    And Matt Flynn is still on the team. WTF?! How could the offseason be this good?!

    Welcome back, Michael Bennett! ANd screw YOU Timmay! Ruskell!!

    Heh, I can just imagine the face Jim Harbarf is making right now!

  52. Ruskell kept Lawrence Jackson and cut this guy.

    What a butthead.

  53. DanielleMND says:

    Avril and Bennett, and we still have Irvin and Scruggs, who will improve in their second year.

  54. chuck_easton says:


    As we speak Jimmy is calling the league office to complain that Seattle is hoarding too many good players and it is cheating. He is demanding that the league and the Refs start throwing flags for unsportmanlike improvement.

  55. bird_spit says:

    Rumor has it, 49er HC, Jim Harblah put his phone in his fist, and his fist thru the wall.

  56. Just guessing here… I’m thinking Bennett might play at DE on rush downs and shift inside on third down, replacing Jason Jones role.

    Third downs in September: Irvin, Avrill, and Bennett all rushing the QB together? Ouch!

  57. CDHawkFan says:

    I wonder if Branch would sign at a discount to be a part of something special. If so I don’t know what we would draft, maybe trade all of them for 2014 picks. I am kidding with the ‘all’ part.

  58. DanielleMND says:

    My dream season? Beat the 49ers twice in the regular season, then again in the NFC championship game, and then win the Super Bowl.

  59. edstang45 says:

    Wow there is a air of high expectations in the 12th man world today, To see Bobbyk write “I would still be glad” takes us into a whole new level of expectation for the comming year!!! How good is it to be a Seahawk Fan today!! very very few holes needing to be filled and having 8 picks … QB worries, a top 5 Defense, all pro defensive back field, up and comming LBers bareley old enough to buy a bottle of Jack, A Beastly offense ready to explode all over the bay area, and rest of the NFL world!!!… Things have never looked this strong going into the draft,…Is it good to be a Hawk Fan or what!! Camas, wa Power poll has the Seahawks #1

  60. chrisj122 says:

    It looks like the F.O. is going all in.

    No Holds Bared!!!

    Superbowl Champs or Bust Baby!!!!!!!

  61. They could let Alan Branch walk at this point, draft another big DT in April, keep MacDonald and Scruggs, and call it good.

    Are they done yet? lol!

  62. Im calling it now; Seahawks trade John Moffitt and our third round pick this year for David DeCastro. Our G position is good to go for the next decade….

    Hey, at this rate, it could happen! It actually more likely than any of us thought signing Avril and Bennet and trading for Harvin was just a couple hours ago!

  63. HeinieHunter says:

    This team has some SERIOUS mojo going on. And they haven’t mined their usual “gold” from the draft yet.

  64. Seahawks2620 says:

    There are so many Rams/Niners fans online clamoring that it will all fall apart once Russell wants to cash in on a big pay day. What they are failing to acknowledge, is that these deals are one and two year deals (Minus Harvin). They didn’t break the bank. What is even more laughable is those same fans claiming that we have built our entire team through Free Agency. Jealous much? All I hear from them is “welllll, Harvin is disgruntled and Avril is overrated anddddd Bennett is a backup at best andddd Russell had a lucky rookie season”. Sounds like a bunch of jealous fans if you ask me.

  65. chuck_easton says:

    Ok, show of hands. When the clock struck 1pm on Tuesday the 12th who had Harvin, Bennett, and Avril on their Seahawks to-do list?

    Anybody? Anybody? Beuller?

    Didn’t think so.

  66. They got Bennett for the price of Branch, basically. Seriously. Thats a heck of a trade-out. And Branch still might come back…

    Craziest offseason EVER in Seattle! I havent been this weirded out since we landed Warren Moon!

  67. JazBadAzz says:

    Picturing these guys in the Bandit!!! WOW!

  68. edstang45 says:

    The next big question should be…How many championships can we win in a row baby!!

  69. GeorgiaHawk says:

    Stop it STTBM! Just stop it! Lol.

  70. Wow. I’m speechless. In a good way!

  71. chuck_easton says:

    If I wake up tomorrow and this has just been one big happy dream (Ala the Who Shot J.R. season of Dallas that was all a dream) I’m gonna be one very angry and po’d person at work.

  72. I know, I get any happier and Im gonna poop a purple twinkie!

  73. edstang45 says:

    too funny STTBM

  74. hawkfaninoklahoma says:

    couldn’t agree more bobby. sitting here with a stupid grin on my face,

  75. MITCHHAWK8 says:

    Seahawks sign Micheal Bennett,,,On a roll!!!

  76. Are you fricking kidding me!!!! MB too?!?!?!?

    I believed Pete when he said he wanted to add pass rushers but DAAAAAAMMMMMMMMNNN this is crazy sweet.

  77. PercyEra says:

    New to posting here, been reading for years and love/respect the hell out of this forum. Can’t believe this offseason.

    Can someone please help a lifelong fan out? What is our projected starting five OL with the guys we currently have and what do you guys see long term on the OL? Okung, Moffit, Unger, Sweezy, Carpenter??

  78. Dukeshire says:

    What is god’s name is happening here? Wow!!

  79. L to R.

    Okung, Carp, Unger, ?, Breno

  80. PercyEra – Welcome! We’re all one big Mr. Happy family right now. Don’t worry, there’s plenty of anger and hatred here and there, as you must know… but it’s all good now:) Besides, even the crazies, myself included sometimes, are happy to be wrong about this and that if it means the Hawks win!

    My uneducated opinion…
    LT Okung
    LG Carp
    C Unger
    RG Moffitt/Sweezy winner in camp
    RT Breno in ’13… the ’15 starter most likely isn’t on the roster right now.

  81. Duke – maybe we start planning that trip to New Jersey thing!?!?

  82. So this is the definition of all in !! Go Hawks

  83. I’ll admit I’m greedy, but I still want to sign Abraham!

    Even if we don’t, I’m all good. :)

  84. raymaines says:

    I’m thinking the ‘Hawks will be drafting for the O-Line, but you never know.

    There must be a few guys currently on the roster who’re putting their house up for sale about now.

  85. While we are waiting for the next news… lol… some good clips to watch….

    Cliff Avril:

    Michael Bennett:

    Percy Harvin:

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