2014 NFL Free Agency: Is Michael Bennett the perfect free agent for the Buccaneers?

Dale Zanine-USA TODAY Sports

The perfect free agent fit for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers is not Michael Bennett, sadly.

SB Nation went through every NFL team and tried to find the perfect free agent to match them. For the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, they came up with Michael Bennett.

The Buccaneers let Bennett walk out of Tampa last season, and then watched as he piled up 8.5 sacks with the Seahawks. Lovie Smith's first priority will be strengthening the defense, and he needs a reliable edge rusher to do so. Bennett and the Bucs could be set for a reunion.

It's an amusing thought, but I don't think it's going to happen, for several reasons. While the Buccaneers do need pass rush, they need an edge rush more than anything. Specifically, they could really use a weakside defensive end who can consistently get to the passer. While Michael Bennett is a terrific player, he's not that.

Michael Bennett has played base defensive end and increasingly defensive tackle throughout the past three years. He looks terrific doing so, both defending the run and rushing the passer. The Seahawks loved his versatility, and he's likely to re-sign with them if they can find the cap space, but the amusing thing is that they primarily used him as a defensive tackle this past year, and he never played the weakside DE spot the Bucs really need help at.

So yes, it would be great to see Michael Bennett in a Tampa Bay uniform again, and he'd certainly help the defense get better. He'd give them more pass rush from the strong side and as a defensive tackle. But that doesn't make him the ideal Bucs free agent, as they already have a terrific pass rusher at defensive tackle. Add in the fact that Bennett is likely to be very expensive after a high-profile, Super Bowl-winning season, and the story becomes less and less likely.

The Bucs will try to find value this offseason. That means relatively inexpensive role players who can contribute. On rare occasions it may mean splurging on an expensive free agent -- but he has to be a very, very great talent to do so, and fit the team's needs immediately. Michael Bennett doesn't fit either profile, unfortunately.

X
Log In Sign Up

forgot?
Log In Sign Up

Forgot password?

We'll email you a reset link.

If you signed up using a 3rd party account like Facebook or Twitter, please login with it instead.

Forgot password?

Try another email?

Almost done,

Join Bucs Nation

You must be a member of Bucs Nation to participate.

We have our own Community Guidelines at Bucs Nation. You should read them.

Join Bucs Nation

You must be a member of Bucs Nation to participate.

We have our own Community Guidelines at Bucs Nation. You should read them.

Spinner

Authenticating

Great!

Choose an available username to complete sign up.

In order to provide our users with a better overall experience, we ask for more information from Facebook when using it to login so that we can learn more about our audience and provide you with the best possible experience. We do not store specific user data and the sharing of it is not required to login with Facebook.

tracking_pixel_9341_tracker