Michael Bennett DL SEA 10 Months

Seahawks re-signed DE Michael Bennett to a four-year, $34 million contract, including $16 million guaranteed.

He chose to stay with the Super Bowl champs over the Bears, who were reportedly offering more money. Bennett, 28, "started" only three games in 2013 with Seattle, but racked up 8.5 sacks and a forced fumble while playing both defensive end and tackle, primarily operating as a sub-package pass rusher. He's not an every-down player, but the Seahawks are big believers in "wave" rotations up front, and Bennett's versatility is critical in their philosophy. The Bears may now attempt to make a late run at free agents Michael Johnson and Lamarr Houston, the top remaining available defensive ends.

Michael Bennett DL SEA 10 Months

The Chicago Tribune reports the Bears are believed to be offering free agent DE Michael Bennett $8.5 million annually, while the Seahawks' proposal is worth $8 million a year.

Adam Schefter's report that Bennett is leaning toward staying in Seattle suggests he's also leaning toward taking a small hometown discount. We're still not dismissing the Bears' chances of landing Bennett, but they may have to go to $9 million per year to land him. NFL Network's Ian Rapoport recently stated on Twitter, however, that Chicago has already begun turning its focus elsewhere.

Michael Bennett DL SEA 10 Months

ESPN's Adam Schefter reports the Seahawks have "emerged as the favorite" to land free agent DL Michael Bennett.

This would be bad news for the Bears, who've targeted Bennett as their top priority in free agency. Seattle has made several cap moves -- releasing Sidney Rice and Red Bryant -- ostensibly aimed at keeping Bennett off the market. The sides have until 4PM ET on Tuesday to negotiate exclusively, before Bennett can sign elsewhere. We're still not ruling out Bennett landing in Chicago.

Michael Bennett DL SEA 10 Months

According to the Chicago Tribune, DE Michael Bennett has emerged as the Bears' "top target" in free agency.

The Bears are in "strong pursuit" of Martellus' brother, and reportedly hope to replace Julius Peppers with Michael at right defensive end. Two club officials told the Tribune they expect Bennett to sign with Chicago "after free agency opens at 3 p.m. (CT) Tuesday." Bears GM Phil Emery has a strong working relationship with agent Drew Rosenhaus, who reps Bennett. It sounds like it's just a matter of time before Bennett is rushing quarterbacks in the Windy City.

Michael Bennett DL SEA 10 Months

The Chicago Tribune reports the Bears are believed to be expressing interest in free agent DE Michael Bennett.

Per reporter Brad Briggs, the Bears are considering releasing Julius Peppers in order to sign Bennett. The Seahawks want him back, but are facing cap issues. One of free agency's top defensive ends, Bennett is believed to have a mutual interest in signing with Chicago and playing with his younger brother Martellus. The 49ers and Raiders have also been linked to Bennett as possible suitors.

Michael Bennett DL SEA 10 Months

Profootballtalk.com's Mike Florio reported Friday that there could be a "bidding war" between the 49ers and Seahawks for free agent DE Michael Bennett.

Florio posted this on Twitter, then conceded on PFT's website that the Niners may be "feigning interest" in order to drive up Bennett's price tag for their division rivals. Bennett would be a bit of an odd fit in San Francisco's 3-4 scheme because he isn't a five-technique end, or a 3-4 rush 'backer. And the 49ers are strong at both of those positions. In addition to Seattle and apparently San Fran, the Bears, Jaguars, and Raiders are expected to pursue Bennett.

Michael Bennett DL SEA 10 Months

ESPN's Adam Schefter reports free agent Michael Bennett won't re-sign with the Seahawks before the start of free agency, and plans to test the open market.

Bennett has been tossing bouquets the Seahawks' way all offseason, but has made it clear he won't be re-signing for less than top dollar. There's now a good chance he'll get that somewhere other than Seattle. According to FOX Sports' Mike Garafolo, the Jaguars and Raiders are "lurking" as potential suitors. Bennett is Rotoworld's No. 3 free-agent end.

Michael Bennett DL SEA 10 Months

Free agent DE Michael Bennett said the Seahawks "obviously" want him for the rest of his career.

"But everything plays into the numbers. Have to make sure everything is right," Bennett added. In other words, he's not going to give the Seahawks a hometown discount after playing out the 2013 season on a one-year deal. Seattle has released Sidney Rice and Red Bryant, moves designed in part to clear space for Bennett and fellow free agent Golden Tate.

Michael Bennett DL SEA 10 Months

Seahawks GM John Schneider doesn't anticipate using the franchise tag on free agent DL Michael Bennett.

Michael Bennett DL SEA 11 Months5 Comments

Free agent DL Michael Bennett has made it clear he's not open to a "hometown discount" with the Seahawks.

"There is no such thing as discount," Bennett said Tuesday. "This is not Costco, this is not Walmart - this is real life. ... You want to be compensated for the way that you perform and the kind of teammate you are." Bennett is on the record as wanting to remain in Seattle, but he's more on the record for wanting top dollar. It's an understandable sentiment after Bennett got the short shrift in free agency last year. He's no better than 50-50 to return to Seattle.