The Seattle Seahawks will begin their voluntary off-season program today with two weeks of strength and conditioning drills and physical rehabilitation.
One player not expected to attend is defensive lineman Michael Bennett, who has asked the team to renegotiate his contract. A source said Bennett would not report to the beginning of the workout period Monday.
Bennett is entering the second year of a four-year deal worth $28.5 million signed in March, 2014.
Bennett has denied a report that he has asked to be traded. But sources have said Bennett would like the team to redo his contract.
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Bennett did not deny that when he appeared on KIRO Radio’s Tom & Curley Show earlier this month.
Asked if he is happy with his contract (it’s at about the 4:30 mark here), Bennett said: “I can’t really say that, but I mean I don’t know anybody that is happy with the amount of money that they’re making. But at this point, I’m just trying to be a good Seahawk.”
It remains viewed as unlikely, though, that Bennett would get a new deal from the Seahawks, as the team has set a public stance of not renegotiating contracts that have more than a year remaining.
That was at the crux of last year’s holdout by running back Marshawn Lynch, as the Seahawks did not want to redo his deal since at that time since it had two years remaining. Seattle redid the deal in March as Lynch was entering the last year of his contract.
On another interview earlier this month ESPN 710 Seattle, Bennett said he had not asked to be traded to Atlanta, as was suggested by one report last month. In that interview, Bennett also said that he and the team have been talking.
Bennett made the appearances to promote some of his efforts fighting obesity and promoting healthy eating (details here).
It is not uncommon for some veterans to skip the voluntary workouts. Lynch has also generally not attended, or only attended a few, the last few years.
Seattle will hold a mandatory veteran mini-camp June 16-18.
Bennett started every game for Seattle last season, leading the team with seven sacks while playing 84.7 percent of the team’s defensive snaps, up from 57 percent in 2013 when he played on a one-year contract worth $5 million.