Adam Schefter reported today that Michael Bennett may have failed to catch on with a long term deal thanks to a torn rotator cuff. Here is his tweeted report:
Seahaws DE Michael Bennett, who left Tampa for Seattle, was diagnosed with torn rotator cuff. Injury why Bennett got a 1-yr deal in SEA.
— Adam Schefter (@AdamSchefter) March 24, 2013
And while it’s certainly reasonable to think the Buccaneers might have been scared off by this injury, the truth is that Michael Bennett is making far too much in Seattle compared to what his 2013 role would be in Tampa Bay with the Buccaneers. Bennett figured to be a backup in the rotation, mainly playing nickel situations, and five million dollars is just too much for a player in that situation.
As we speculated earlier here on The Pewter Plank, Mark Dominik has his plans in place, and one of those plans appears to be starting Da’Quan Bowers at defensive end in 2013. Dominik took a chance on the often injured Bowers, and despite a slide in the draft order, he was considered a top prospect coming out of Clemson. The Buccaneers have waited out his many injuries, and he figures to be at his healthiest coming into the 2013 season, assuming he is cleared of gun charges and faces no suspensions or jail time.
So with Bowers slotted in as a starting defensive end, and with Adrian Clayborn occupying the other defensive end position, there was no room for Bennett to make anything resembling starter’s pay. Whether or not your agree with Dominik’s logic, the reason for Michael Bennett signing a one year deal with the Seahawks rather than with the Buccaneers is because he didn’t figure prominently into the plans for 2013. And honestly, I don’t think it’s unreasonable to let a former undrafted free agent player walk for bigger money and to focus on your former second round pick.
Now, this is certainly a decision that can and will be judged harshly in hindsight. So what do you think, Bucs fans, would you be concerned about a torn rotator cuff? Would you bring back Bennett with or without the injury? Let us know in the comments below.