CHARLOTTE – The Panthers have beefed up their pass rush by signing linebacker/defensive end Bruce Irvin, a former first-round draft pick, to a one-year contract.
Irvin, selected No. 15 overall in 2012 by the Seahawks, spent the second half of last season with the Falcons, recording 3.5 sacks after coming up with three sacks over the first half of the year with the Raiders.
In seven NFL seasons with the Seahawks, Raiders and Falcons, the 6-foot-3, 250-pound Irvin has 43.5 sacks, 266 tackles, 15 forced fumbles, 11 passes defensed and three interceptions. He’s one of four NFL players since 2016 with more than 20 sacks and 10 forced fumbles.
"Our primary focus coming into the offseason was to add talent to our offensive line and our front on defense, primarily in the area of rushing the passer," general manager Marty Hurney said. "Bruce has a knack for sacking and disrupting the quarterback. We are very pleased to have him as a member of the Carolina Panthers."
After Irvin piled up 22.5 sacks in two seasons at West Virginia, he quickly developed into a key cog on one of the league’s top defenses. Over his time in Seattle (2012-15), the Seahawks defense ranked first in points allowed (15.7 per game) and yards allowed (284.7 per game), third in interceptions (73) and fourth in forced fumbles (71). After leading NFL rookies with eight sacks in 2012, Irvin helped the Seahawks reach the Super Bowl each of the next two seasons.
Irvin’s last game with Seattle was a playoff loss to the Panthers at the end of the 2015 season. He then signed as an unrestricted free agent with the Raiders and played there two-and-a-half seasons before being released, recording 18 sacks, 121 tackles and 11 forced fumbles in Oakland. He tied a career high in sacks with eight in 2017.
View some of the best images of the accomplished pass rusher from his seven seasons in the league with the Seahawks, Raiders and Falcons.