In case you missed it, Seahawks defensive end Red Bryant gave some rather revealing answers in an interview with Mitch Levy of KJR-AM earlier this week (you can listen to it here).
After signing a five-year, $35 million deal prior to last season that included $14.5 million in guaranteed money, Bryant had what was generally considered as a disappointing season — playing much of the second half of the year with a plantar fascia injury no doubt contributed.
Still, Bryant offered few excuses when asked by Levy about last season and whether he considered it subpar.
“Of course you always want to do better and build upon your previous success,” he said. “I don’t really have a reason why my stats weren’t as good as the prior year. All I can do is continue to work on what I can work on.
“I felt like the team did well (but) there was a few games where we got hurt in the running game and I take pride in not allowing teams to be able to run on us, so given the fact that teams were able to run on us down the stretch I feel like there were a lot of things I probably could do to play better and be more effective.
“In terms of if I don’t play better will I be here or not be here? That’s up to (the front office). I feel like everybody is entitled to their opinion and if you felt like I was subpar I don’t have a problem with that.”
Bryant is due a guaranteed $6.6 million this season, so he won’t be going anywhere now. The reference to whether he will be here is more about the 2014 season and beyond, when the Seahawks will have to begin making some hard financial decisions.
Bryant said he felt like some teams ran away from him last season, making it more difficult to make a difference against the run, “especially the 49ers. They have certain plays that were extremely tough in terms of how we were playing it.”
He also said “the Atlanta game, I felt like they were able to run the ball more than we would have liked.”
Bryant, though, expressed confidence that his play will improve this season under new defensive coordinator Dan Quinn, who coached the defensive line in 2009 and 2010 and made the pivotal change in Bryant’s position from tackle to end.
“I feel like coach Quinn is going to put me in more situations where I can get back to how I was in 2010 in terms of just being on the tackle instead of the tight end,” he said. “I’m going to have more opportunity to be a little bit more disruptive whether it’s if I’m not making the play at least I’m in the backfield knocking out pulling guards or the guy in the backfield. I will have more opportunities than I feel I had last year.”
Bryant said when he prefers lining up over the right because then he can be in “attack mode” all the time.
“For me, my approach to this season is no excuses,” he said. “I’m not going to allow me to have an escape whether it be my foot, my knee, whatever the case may be.”