Former Bucs defensive end Michael Bennett was always a media favorite in the locker room during his time in Tampa Bay.
Mainly because he was a terrific quote, and never afraid to speak his mind.
On Wednesday, under the shadows of the big mouse ears at Disney’s Wide World of Sports Complex, home to the practices for the 2017 Pro Bowl, PewterReport.com caught up with Bennett who said he was still unhappy that he and the team parted ways in 2012.
“I was upset too,” Bennett said. “You go for a long time, and you play for an organization, and you think you will be there forever. I never wanted to leave Tampa. I thought I would retire a Buccaneer, but then I end up here (Seattle). I guess the Glazers didn’t think I was good enough to come back so… hopefully one day I will get to watch Gerald retire as a Buccaneer and me retire as a Seahawk, and get to see Gerald win a championship. That would be fun.”
Michael Bennett – Photo by: Mark Cook/PR
Bennett joined the Seahawks as a free agent when he team failed to meet the money he was asking for. Sources have told PewterReport.com that the impasse was less than $500,000 per season, and some in the organization felt he was damaged goods, with a bad shoulder.
And while Bennett has dealt with shoulder issues while in Seattle, he also has produced 30.5 sacks, two Pro Bowls and helped Seattle win a Super Bowl in the four seasons since he left Tampa Bay.
Any anger over the divorce appeared to be over for Bennett on Wednesday however, as the former Aggie was all smiles admiring his former team from a distance.
“I see a great young team with a lot of great players,” Bennett said. “Obviously a lot of Pro Bowl players. I mean look at Jameis Winston, some of the plays he made this year. He is such a great quarterback. And then you have a good running game, and then you have the defense, one of the best in the league. Gerald McCoy, Lavonte David; I could name so many.”
While the anger has subsided, you could still tell Bennett will always wonder, what if?
“I didn’t do too bad for myself (playing for Seattle), but I could have done the same thing for Tampa!” Bennett said. “They just needed to give that young team time. You look at the Pro Bowl now and there are eight players from that team right now playing in this game. It is crazy. They did a great job of scouting, except doing a good job of keeping them together.”
As he was wrapping up the interview he was reminded that the Bucs dealt the Seahawks a loss last season at Raymond James. The mostly always jovial Bennett fired off a typical Bennett response grinning.
“Yeah but I didn’t play. That’s why.”