Seahawk defensive end Michael Bennett touched on a number of topics during his press conference Wednesday.
What Michael Bennett said about Colin Kaepernick and Russell Wilson Wednesday figures to get the most attention.
But Bennett hardly stopped there during a roughly 10-minute session with Seattle media.
Here’s more of what he said.
On why he skips OTAs
Bennett skipped the voluntary OTAs (Organized Team Activities) for the third straight year but is attending the mandatory mini-camp. Bennett was searching for a new contract the last two years, which he admitted at the time played a role in sitting out OTAs.
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But Bennett also said there are some broader reasons for why he prefers to do as much of his offseason training at his home in Honolulu, which he shares with his wife and three daughters.
“I like to be a parent,” Bennett said. “I’ve got daughters. I’m a coach. I’m a teacher at the school. I do things in the community. I try to balance my football life with my actual reality. So, to find that great balance as a human being. I think it’s important as athletes to find that. I think a lot of times athletes have a problem when they retire because they build an identity around sports. Then when the sport is gone you are lost. So along this way you’ve got to transition yourself to be able to life in civilization. So find different things you can be a part of. Find out who you are.
“That’s why I do that I do. I mean, I train harder than anyone in the NFL. So I’m not worried about being in shape or being the best player I can be. What I am worried about is how good of a parent I can be, and how much better a husband I can be.”
On if he thinks the talk of the Seahawks having internal strife is overblown
Said Bennett: “I think everything’s overblown in sports. I think you want to build stories. Stories are needed. This is a drought in the media right now. This is a drought. The NFL does everything for the media when it comes to sports. Every other sport is not really even paid attention to. Nobody knows who even won the NHL championship but when the Super Bowl is on, everybody is paying attention. It’s the biggest event. So people want a story in sports. People want to be a part of a story, build up a controversy and so now we have a story so thank you. We have something to build upon. You already started our narrative. That’s good for us. We already know where our story starts and we have to define the ending of our story.”
On his upcoming book
Bennett revealed that he has also been spending the offseason writing a book he plans to title “Things that Make White People Uncomfortable.’’
Bennett said he is getting help in writing the book from Dave Zirin, a writer for The Nation who has also written eight books, many touching on the intersection of sports and politics.
Bennett said he is almost finished and that the book should be out in December or January.
Bennett said the title is meant “to start a conversation so people will want to read it.’’ He said the book focuses on issues that he says are important in America. He said many books written by athletes have invariably focused only on sports but that his is “more of a reflection of America, its past and its time’’ comparing it to books written by Kareem Abdul-Jabbar who he said is one of his idols.
On his weight
Bennett said his offseason work has gotten him a little ligher than past seasons — listed at 274 he said he’s now “about 272.’’
“I feel lighter. I think my diet is improving every year, not eating red meat, not eating chicken, just eating fish and vegetable. Yeah I’m getting lighter – a lot of sushi. … I’m about 272 – a full man. So I’m feeling really good. Do I look lighter or something?”