Seahawks linebacker K.J. Wright said in an interview on SiriusXM that the departures of Richard Sherman and Michael Bennett have made this a tough offseason.
Seahawks linebacker K.J. Wright, who is now the fourth-longest tenured player on the team’s roster, said in an interview on Late Hits on SiriusXM that the moves last week to release Richard Sherman and trade defensive lineman Michael Bennett have made this “one of the more tough offseasons to deal with.”
The comments were among the first of any Seahawk since the team began a makeover last week that has seen six players released, traded or signed elsewhere (though cornerback DeShawn Shead could still return).
“Every year it’s not fun when guys leave,” Wright was quoted as saying. “But this one hurt pretty bad with Sherman leaving. I’ve been with him going on eight years. Same thing with Mike. Been with him for going on five years. You just didn’t see that happening the way it did, but it’s a ruthless business. It’s something that we know what we were signed up for. However, it still doesn’t make it easier knowing when your guys leave.”
Wright and Sherman each arrived as part of the 2011 draft that along with the drafts of 2010 and 2012 helped transform the Seahawks into a Super Bowl winner. Wright and Byron Maxwell are now the only two players left from that draft (Maxwell having spent almost two-and-a-half years away from Seattle before returning last November). Doug Baldwin also arrived that year as an undrafted free agent.
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The only players on the roster who have now been with the team longer than Wright are punter Jon Ryan (free agent in 2008) and safeties Earl Thomas and Kam Chancellor (each drafted in 2010).
But Wright said the loss of prominent locker room voices isn’t something the team can’t overcome.
“The locker room chemistry will be fine,” Wright said. “You don’t get mad or upset at the management end of things. It’s just that when a guy leaves, like a Sherman for example, you just have to rebuild that chemistry with someone else. Me and Sherm, we knew each other (like) the back of each other’s hands. But whoever they put in there to replace him, I’ll be with them in OTAs, get too know how they play the game, know how they communicate and we’re going to be just fine.”
Also interesting was Wright’s take on Sherman’s decision to play for the 49ers and get a chance to play against the Seahawks twice a year.
“I believe it had a little bit to do with it and I’m not mad at him,” Wright said. “We’re always competing to be our best. Whatever motivates Sherm to be at his best is going to pay off for him. Sometimes guys do make decisions to play their old team and guys always get hyped up about that and so, he gets a lot of opportunities to face us and it’s going to be fun to go against him. As soon as the news broke, I texted him, ‘It’s going to be fun to battle with you.’ I’m kind of glad I get to see him twice a year.