The Seahawks and 49ers battled for NFC West supremacy during the regular season, then for the NFC title in the postseason, and now the fight between the two teams may extend to one of 2014’s top free agents. According to Mike Florio of Pro Football Talk, there’s a belief in league circles that the 49ers could make a run at Seahawks defensive end Michael Bennett this offseason.
Florio doesn’t cite any specific sources, and cautions that the Niners could be feigning interest in order to drive the price up for their division rivals. Bennett also may not be an ideal fit in San Francisco’s 3-4 scheme, though the PFT report suggests he could be a potential replacement for veteran end Justin Smith, who will turn 35 in September and may only have one season left with the team.
Whether or not the Niners make a serious play for Bennett, the free-agent-to-be is expected to draw significant interest when he hits the open market next week. The Seahawks also figure to receive competition from the Bears and perhaps the Raiders and Jaguars, among other clubs, as they try to re-sign their standout pass rusher.