Michael Bennett is the Most Underrated Pass Rusher in NFL History

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Anthony Miller
I am currently an NFL Contributor for Infinity Sports Network as well as NFL Draft Contributor for NFL Draft Lounge. I also write about the NFL, XFL, and arena football for multiple websites.

While Michael Bennett might not be a first-ballot hall of farmer, he is greatly underrated at his position. 

Michael Bennett announce on his Instagram page Tuesday that he would retire after 11 seasons in the NFL.

Bennett started his career undrafted to the Seattle Seahawks before getting cut in the middle of his rookie season in 2009. After signing with Tampa Bay, he improved in his four seasons there finishing his last season there with nine sacks in 2012. He resigned with the Seahawks and played there for five seasons. Bennett averaged about eight sacks per season there, was selected to three straight Pro Bowls from 2015-2017, and won a Super Bowl.

He was then traded to the Philadelphia Eagles in 2018 as his nine sacks helped the team make the playoffs. New England became his next home last season as the Eagles traded him there. Bennett would only play six games before being traded once again to the Dallas Cowboys this time. He finished the season with 6.5 sacks between the two teams. Bennett’s final numbers stand at 69.5 sacks and ten forced fumbles.

Michael Bennett and His Legacy

Typically, when top pass rushers in the league are brought up, Bennett’s name may not be mentioned as much. This really shouldn’t be the case as he was a consistent pass rusher. Rarely did he eclipse double-digit sacks in a season, but he was always close. He may not have been the best pass rusher on his teams, but he was the most reliable.

Bennett played a key role in the Seahawks winning the Super Bowl against the Denver Broncos in 2014. Despite not being a starter for most of the season, he dominated from the defensive tackle position with 8.5 sacks. He was a key piece to one of the best defenses of the decade in Seattle.

Most defensive tackles are known for stopping the run. Bennett was used differently as his specialty was getting to the quarterback. He excelled at pressuring the quarterback which is hard these days for defensive tackles to do. Bennett saw more time at defensive end, but that versatility to play both end and tackle made him a desirable piece to the defense.

It would be surprising to see Michael Bennett get voted in as a first-ballot hall of famer in five years. What people should think about though is the impact he made on the field. There shouldn’t be too much doubt in Bennett’s ability on defense. The skillset he possesses should make him an easy choice for the Pro Football Hall of Fame eventually.

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