The Seattle Seahawks have signed free-agent defensive end Michael Bennett to a one-year, $5 million contract, according to Pro Football Talk.
Although he may not be a household name, Bennett was one of the top defensive free agents on the market. The 27 year old became a full-time starter for the first time last season and responded with a career-high nice sacks. Bennett is more than a pass rusher, however, as he played the run nearly as well as he got after the quarterback last season.
Bennett spent parts of four seasons with Tampa Bay after signing with the Seahawks as an undrafted free agent following the 2009 NFL Draft. Bennett is coming off back-to-back excellent seasons, according to Pro Football Focus' grading system. In 2011, Bennett amassed a plus-21.7 grade. His grade dropped to plus-18.8 last season, but the mark was still good for the seventh-best among 4-3 defensive ends.
A number of players cashed in with big free agent contracts, but the market for defensive ends proved to be lower than expected. In addition to Bennett's deal, Cliff Avril signed a two-year, $15 million deal with Seattle.