Michael Bennett in another skirmish at Seahawks’ training camp
RENTON – It doesn’t constitute breaking news when a skirmish breaks out during a training-camp practice. It is notable, though, when the same player is involved in a few of them over the span of four days.
That’s what has happened this week with Seahawks defensive lineman Michael Bennett, who got into it again with an offensive lineman toward the end of Thursday’s practice. It happened during an 11-on-11 session after a play in which Bennett jumped offsides. It was hard to tell in the mass of large bodies which offensive lineman Bennett was going after, but he had to be held back by several teammates as he shouted at whomever it was.
Bennett didn’t return after that, watching the rest of practice from the sideline with his helmet off, which may have not been his choice. Once practice ended, something set Bennett off again to the point that Cliff Avril had to grab him and escort him inside.
Tensions have been running high between Seattle’s offensive and defensive linemen during training camp, especially since Monday when the shoulder pads came on and the intensity ratcheted up. And especially with Bennett, who has been at the center of it all. He and rookie Germain Ifedi got after it during a one-on-one pass-rush drill that day. Still miffed the next day, he and Cliff Avril took exception to when Ifedi pushed down a rookie defensive lineman during the same drill. The groups had to be separated.
Asked about the scuffles in general and not Bennett in particular, coach Pete Carroll said he sees it as “the passion coming out.” But he also made it clear that there’s a line that’s not to be crossed, and one of his comments could be taken as an indication that Bennett was thrown out of practice.
“They want to play this game, they’re excited about what’s coming up, they want to get ready and be really at their best. So you’re seeing it,” he said. “It’s translating to sometimes we lose a little bit of really the poise that we need.
“We can’t play like that. You get in a skirmish, you get thrown out. That’s what happens. That happened today. That’s just the way … we do it. We need to take it to the heights that we can really get the most out of it. I love the way our guys are working. We need to work together really well at that as we learn.”