SEATTLE – The first mention of Michael Bennett in a Seahawks media guide came on Page 130 in 2009.
Bennett was among 18 players listed in the “additional free agents” section, meaning, mostly, players who had not been drafted that year as rookies.
“A solid performer at either defensive end spot, Bennett has a solid combination of pass-rushing speed and run-stopping strength on the edge,” the Seahawks wrote in their capsule of Bennett, a Texas A&M graduate whose picture and profile were included among the likes of quarterback Jeff Rowe, tight end John Tereshinski and fullback Dan Curran.
Bennett would go on to be all of those things plus so much more during an 11-year NFL career spent largely with the Seahawks – which included being an anchor on the defensive line of the 2013 team that won the only Super Bowl title in Seattle’s history.
His career came to an official end Tuesday morning when he announced his retirement.
Bennett broke the news of his retirement in an Instagram post, writing that it “feels a little like death of self, but I’m looking forward to the rebirth – the opportunity to reimagine my purpose.”
That doesn’t figure to be hard for Bennett, who was always about more than football during his NFL career.
While Bennett turned 34 last November, he was still an effective player in 15 games split between New England and Dallas, making 6½ sacks. There had even been some rumblings that he could return for a third stint with the Seahawks.
Instead, he decided to call it a career, telling The New Yorker that the time he spent at home during the pandemic helped convince him it was time for him to be at home full time with his wife and three daughters.
Bennett was a mainstay of Seattle’s defensive line from 2013-17, making 39 sacks and numerous more big plays during a time when the Seahawks assembled one of the best defenses in team history.
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