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Michael Bennett ruled out, might need knee surgery

Michael Bennett will watch Sunday's Seahawks game from the sideline.

Seattle's Pro Bowl defensive lineman has been ruled out of the team's Week 8 tilt against the Saints because of the knee injury he suffered two weeks ago against the Falcons.

In addition, Seahawks coach Pete Carroll told reporters that Bennett might need to undergo surgery to repair cartilage damage in his knee. A determination on whether surgery will be neccessary will be made next week, Carroll said.

It's an unexpected development after Bennett played through the injury in last week's 6-6 tie with the Cardinals. The absence will mark his first missed tilt with Seattle since joining the team in 2013.

Bennett's knee injury was the result of a cut block by Falcons left tackle Jake Matthews, a tactic the pass rusher railed against after the game, saying: "To me it's a scary (expletive) move," Bennett said. "Honestly, I think if you dive at someone else's legs, you're a little (expletive). If you are big in the NFL, you just line up and play -- why you got to cut someone on the (expletive) play? I mean, I don't know. That (expletive) is just stupid to me."

Carroll saw it differently -- at least publicly -- saying there was "nothing dirty" about the block, but that debate does nothing to alter the result: Bennett won't be on hand to tangle with a high-flying New Orleans passing game that piles up yardage and points in bunches.

With Bennett out, look for fellow end Frank Clark to take a bundle of extra snaps across from Cliff Avril. Malliciah Goodman could also see action for the 'Hawks, who continue to operate as one of the friskiest defenses league-wide.

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