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Michael Bennett deserves what he wants a

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    Training camp is here, which means Seahawks general managerJohn Schneider has to deal with another disgruntled veteran player. Its defensive end Michael Bennett’s turn to test Seattle management and its policy of not renegotiating or extending contracts with two years or more remaining.But Bennetts case is unique.Of course,Schneider is used to this by now.Two years ago, Marshawn Lynch held out before getting money Brandon Williams Jersey moved up in his deal that had two years remaining. Last year, Kam Chancellor (who had three years left on his deal) mi sed all of training camp and two regular-season games before reporting with nothing gained from his holdout.MORE: NFC predictions: Can Seahawks get sweet revenge?Bennett and his agent can rightfully claim the player is underpaid much more so than Lynch or Chancellor were when compared to top market deals at their positions. Bennett has been one of the top defensive linemen in the NFL since he signed his four-year, $7.125 million-per-year dealwith $16 million guaranteed in 2014. He can play inside and outside, and he had a career-high 10 sacks and 19 QB pre sures last season. Yet hes 26th in average pay among NFL defensive linemen.It’s hard for Schneider to argue that Bennett is not as important to the defense as cornerback Richard Sherman, who is making $14 million per year. Pouring salt on Bennetts wound is this years slew of defensive line deals, led by Von Miller ($19 million per year, $70 million guaranteed), Fletcher Cox ($17 million per year, $63 million guaranteed), Muhammad Wilkerson ($17.2 million per year, $53.5 million guaranteed). Then there’s Olivier Vernon’s crazy free-agent deal with the Giants $17 million per year with $52.5 million guaranteed for a player with 29 sacks in four seasons. Dont forget Ndamakong Suh’s $19 million-per-year deal.In protest of his contract status, Bennett skipped the voluntary offseason program but did attend the mandatory mini-camp and has indicated he will report to training camp. That could change without Javorius Allen Jersey at least some progre s on a new deal. He hasdisplayedhis frustration by talking about the huge defensive line contracts and adding, If you don’t think I’m valuable, then just get rid of me.MORE: NFL’s 10 highest-paid defendersMichael Bennett (Getty Images)This is quite the conundrum for Schneider and the Seahawks. To his credit, Schneider reportedly is willing to talk to Bennett’s agent Doug Hendrickson, and coach Pete Carroll has weighed in by saying, “We’re going to make an effort so he remains a Seahawk.”Seattle bra s apparently agrees that Bennett’s case is unique, if anything so it can fight off future players who want new deals before their final years under contract.Under the current CBA, contract negotiations have rarely resulted in holdouts, as players and agents seek to get deals done early before cap money gets tighter. Plus, the fines for holdouts have ramped up significantly, and there is recourse to seek repayment of signing bonus money.STEELE: How Seattle’s offseason comparesto other teamsIn my years as a GM, holdouts were much more common. When I first started negotiating contracts before free agency and the salary cap arrived in 1993, I dealt with a couple holdouts every year. Often it was a veteran in a long-term deal who had out performed his contract. Sometimes it was a player like running back Robert Smith, who wanted to avoid training camp by signing late in August. During the era before rookie salaries were scaled back, first-rounders often waited until a week or so into camp to sign.My extension policy was the same as that of the Seahawks: Wait until there’s one year left on the deal, then we’ll talk.The policy broughtme difficulty with two Hall of Fame players who had multiple years left on their Vikings contracts when the market increased dramatically defensive end Chris Doleman and offensive tackle Gary Zimmerman.I had signed Doleman after his 21-sack season in 1989 to a five-year deal that paid him top-market money. Then Reggie White more than doubled Doleman’s salary in the first year of free agency. An impa se developed, and we eventually traded Doleman to Atlanta for a high first-round pick.Zimmerman had not yet played under his two-year extension, which was top-tackle money when he signed. His offensive linemate, center Kirk Lowdermilk (a good player but not in Zimmerman’s cla s), got more money from the Colts in free agency. I asked Zimmerman to play one year of the new deal, and then I would renegotiate his contract. He refused, and we traded him to Denver for first-, second- and sixth-round picks.MORE: Where does Schneider rank among NFL GMs?John Schneider (Getty Images)Asis the case for Schneider, I had negotiated fair deals at the time for both Doleman Breshad Perriman Jersey and Zimmerman only to have them blow up in my face whenthe market jumped. Like Schneider, I didn’t want to set a bad precedent by redoing deals with multiple years remaining. We would not have agreed to trade either player without the compensation being excellent in return.The difference today is the salary cap being so much higher, resulting in more flexibility for teams. I was working with an extremely tight cap of $32-35 million in 1993-94, and we had a veteran team with lots of Pro Bowlers. I simply didn’t have the room to adjust contracts without creating a huge cap problem down the road.The Seahawks reportedly have $8.5 million of cap room. They have benefited from the recent cap increase of $12 million this year after a $10 million bump in 2015, which should give them the ability to extend Bennett without cap strangling themselves. The Bennett case will stand up as worthy of a departure from their policy because his current deal is so far below market value.MORE: NFL’s most hated players of all timeThe Seahawks likely are somewhat concerned about Bennett’s age (30). But as a player who keeps himself in good shape, Bennett should be able to play at a high level for four or five more years.Another difficulty Bennett faces is his status as an undrafted player. He didn’t receive a big rookie deal and has always had to fight an uphill battle first to make a team, then to be paid his worth.I loved to see undrafted and late-round players succeed and be rewarded. That was the case with Hall of Famer John Randle, an undrafted player I signed in 1998 to the top defensive tackle deal in the NFL at the time. It was a great example to our other players if you work hard and surpa s expectations, you’ll be rewarded.That’s a good way to look at the Bennett situation. I would not tear up the last two years of his or any contract. Recognize that nobody forced him to sign his current deal, so he is partially responsible.COUNTERPOINT: This is all Bennett’s faultBut a new deal for Bennett doesnt have to reach the Miller stratosphere nor should it. Bennett belongs at the Wilkerson-Cox Ray Lewis Jersey level, or perhaps a shade below them since they are several years younger. A significant upgrade to the $15 million-$16 million-per-year level (with a big jump in guarantees) under a three-year extension is warranted.At the very least, Bennett deserves to have some of his future salary moved into this year, just like Seattle did for Lynch.Jeff Diamond is the former president of the Titans and the former vice president/general manager of the Vikings. He was selected NFL Executive of the Year in 1998. Diamond is currently a busine s and sports consultant who also does broadcast and online media work. He is the former chairman and CEO of The Ingram Group. Follow Jeff on Twitter: @jeffdiamondNFL.

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