March 14, 2013 at 2:39 PM
Seahawks announce the signing of Cliff Avril
Defensive end Cliff Avril is the newest Seahawk, the free-agent defensive end from Detroit signing with the Seahawks on Wednesday.
“I’m happy with it,” Avril said in a conference call with reporters. “I’m happy to be here. The reasons why I chose this team because the defense all around is pretty good, the guys are young, they’re hungry.”
Avril is 26 and played the past five years for Detroit, which drafted him in the third round out of Purdue in 2008. He has totaled 29 sacks over the previous three seasons, logging more than eight in each of those years.
Avril was designated as the Lions’ franchise player last year, making $10.6 million on a one-year deal.
Just where Avril will fit remains up in the air.
“He’s got definite pass rush ability as a featured rusher,” coach Pete Carroll said. “He also has played linebacker in his past. He gives us a real flexibility.”
As for how it affects Chris Clemons? It doesn’t. Clemons is recovering from knee surgery to repair a torn anterior-cruciate ligament suffered in the first playoff game.
“We’re definitely not going to rush Chris in any way,” Carroll said. “It doesn’t affect him at all. Chris is a premier player for us and we expect him to be coming back. That’s a top priority for us. He feels he has a chance to make it back at the start of the year.”
Bruce Irvin remains a prominent edge rusher as well, and Avril is added to that mix rather than replacing someone.
“I don’t feel like you can ever have enough speed pass rushers for us,” Carroll said.