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Michael Bennett Trade Rumors: Seahawks Reportedly Trying to Trade DE

Rob Goldberg@TheRobGoldbergFeatured ColumnistMarch 1, 2018

Seattle Seahawks defensive end Michael Bennett rushes in during the NFL Pro Bowl football game Sunday, Jan. 28, 2018, in Orlando, Fla. The AFC won 24-23. (Jeff Haynes/AP Images for Panini)
Jeff Haynes/Associated Press

The Seattle Seahawks are reportedly shopping defensive end Michael Bennett, according to Brady Henderson of ESPN. 

Head coach Pete Carroll didn't confirm the veteran's status when asked about him at the NFL Scouting Combine.

"I haven't talked to Mike in a while now but it's the time of year, conversations going in all directions," Carroll said Thursday.

Bennett has spent the past five years in Seattle, earning Pro Bowl appearances in each of the last three seasons. He finished 2017 second on the team with 8.5 sacks while spending time at a variety of spots along the defensive line.

Despite his contributions, he saw the end of his time with Seattle after the team's regular-season finale.

"I probably won't be back next year," he said in December, per Gregg Bell of the News Tribune"Just seems like it's a young man's game. I can see them going younger, with younger players. That's part of the game."

The problem is his contract, with an extension that could keep him on the team through 2020, per Spotrac. There is an out after the 2018 season, but he has a dead cap hit of about $5.2 million if he is released or traded.

As Henderson noted, the Seahawks could save $2.2 million by trading or releasing him before June 1, while making a move before March 18 saves a $3 million roster bonus.

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Seattle could see a lot of turnover in the offseason, but there is still a lot of depth on the defensive line. Recent top draft picks like Jarran Reed and Malik McDowell inside while Frank Clark continues his improvement as a pass-rusher. Although there are question marks about Cliff Avril (injury) and Sheldon Richardson (free agency), the front office will have plenty of options for the unit going into 2018.

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