The rumors have been swirling. The chatter has gotten louder. And now, with the Seahawks' season officially over, defensive end Michael Bennett is ready to go out and say it: he doesn't see himself returning to the team in 2018.
2-time Pro Bowl DE Michael Bennett, 32, tells me after #Seahawks' season ends: "I probably won't be back next year.— Gregg Bell (@gbellseattle) January 1, 2018
"Just seems like it's a young man's game. I can see them going younger, with younger players. That's part of the game."
The 32-year-old edge rusher has been with Seattle since 2013, appearing in two Pro Bowls and winning Super Bowl XLVIII. He is under contract with the team through 2020, but the team may be ready to either attempt to move him or pay whatever it takes to get him out the door.
All told, Bennett has appeared in 59 games with the Seahawks and has recorded 30.5 sacks and four forced fumbles. If this is the end of the line for him in Seattle, you can bet that he'll be fondly remembered.