The Oakland Raiders have a new physical specimen to work with on defense this season in the form of Bruce Irvin. The former Seattle Seahawks linebacker seems to be fitting in well with the Raiders (and former Seattle linebackers coach/current Oakland defensive coordinator Ken Norton, Jr.) so far, and he’s also been pushing support on Twitter for the Hawks to reward Michael Bennett with a new deal.
But that doesn’t mean that he has forgotten why the Seahawks might even have the cap space to keep Bennett, and other core players (courtesy of Silver and Black Pride):
Q: Is there any motivating factor with Seattle letting you go?
Irvin: “It is what it is. You can’t pay everybody. I knew that when they started paying Russell [Wilson] and they started paying Bobby [Wagner]. Those guys deserved their deals, so I would never take that from them. It’s only so much. Football has a salary cap and you can’t pay everybody. When you win and when you win a lot of games, you win Super Bowls, guys are going to leave. Guys are going to go to a new system. Teams are going to come get your guys and try to see what they have going on up there. I understand the business side of it. I appreciate Seattle for the opportunity they gave me the last four years, but I’m in Oakland now and I couldn’t have been put in a better situation.”
The Seahawks could have guaranteed Bruce’s stay by picking up his fifth-year option a year ago, but decided they couldn’t quite justify the $7 million+ price tag. Bruce had just 14 sacks over the last three seasons, but perhaps it turned out that this defense wasn’t quite the fit for him that Pete Carroll thought it was when they drafted him in the first round in 2012.
He’ll now rush the passer next to Khalil Mack, arguably the best pass rusher in the entire NFL now.