Source - Michael Bennett will soon be a New England Patriot. … “I’m excited about it,” Bennett said Monday during an appearance at Princeton University’s Richardson Auditorium. …
“From a football perspective there’s a respect for Belichick,” Bennett said. “I consider him the Yoda of football when it comes to the ins and outs of what’s happening around how to prepare for a game. …
“The Patriots are a team that people love to hate because they always win,” he said. “The opportunity to learn from that and be in that environment is good.”
Bennett said the trade to New England initially surprised him. … In meetings with Patriots executives, Bennett said he would continue to remain in the locker room during the playing of the anthem.
“I explained to them is that my integrity mean everything,” Bennett said. “I think they respect that about me, they respect who I am as an individual.”
He added: “The Patriots have been trying to trade for me for two years. Last year they tried to get me, the year before they tried to get me.”
Now they have him.
Bennett would neither deny nor confirm that his younger brother, Martellus, would also join the Patriots. …
He said he was looking forward to engaging Belichick and Brady about their support of a president who is largely viewed to be hostile to the interests of people of color.
“I think it’s important not to to run away from those conversations, or not hear their ideas about why they think the way they do,” he said.
There are a few things to unpack here. Reducing it to bullet points, I guess we can take away that Michael Bennett:
–Is excited to learn under Bill Belichick.
–Still can’t stand Francis Scott Key music.
–Has been pursued by the Patriots for two years.
–Can’t say whether or not Martellus will unretire.
–Is really looking forward to talking politics with Belichick and Brady.
That makes one of us. But I’m sure there won’t be any issues. Belichick hasn’t spent untold hours and dollars working with Jim Brown on social justice causes and Brady hasn’t been so respected by teammates across the political spectrum just to find themselves getting caught up in heated policy debates with Michael Bennett. It shouldn’t take long before he realizes part of the reason for all this success is this team cares very little what your views are on social issues, climate accords or trade with China and very much about whether you know your assignment when they switch from a 4-3 Under front to a 3-4 with the nose lining up in 0-technique. So I’m sure Bennett will get to say his peace and everyone get back to the business of building a border wall along the line of scrimmage.
To me the bigger question was the one that wasn’t asked. The one about Bennett’s history of talking shit about his new coordinator, Greg Schiano.
In case you’ve forgotten, back in 2013 when Schiano’s Buccaneers were holding joint practices with the Patriots, some unnamed Tampa players were belittling him to NFL.com for telling them to pay attention to the Pats coaches and listen to them like they were their own. “He said, ‘Treat their coaches like they’re your coaches.,’” one anonymous Buc said. “We were like, ‘Huh?’ When we practiced together, whatever Belichick wanted, he did. It was hilarious — here (Schiano) is, acting like Mr. Tough Guy all the time, and when Belichick wanted something, he was like, ‘Yes, Bill.’”
But Bennett had no problem putting his name on the bitch session. “He’s trying to be Belichick,” Bennett was quoted as saying. “Yeah, some people think Belichick’s an [asshole], but he’s a legend. When this guy acts that way, it’s a whole different deal.”
“You seem like a guy who couldn’t play for a stiff,” he was asked.
“I did that before. It wasn’t fun,” Bennett said. “His name is Greg Schiano.
“I think you lose guys like that. Guys are their own men. To a coach (like that), his whole life is football … A player, he tries to distance himself from football (in his off time), you know?”
So yeah, that awkwardness is going to have to be dealt with. Any adult should be able to handle political differences. We’ve all got that relative who tries to start political arguments at Easter dinner or cookouts or wherever. And ignoring his takes on hot button issues of the day is what comfort food and copious amounts of booze were invented for. It’s a lot harder to handle it when the last time you were together he went around telling everybody you’re a fraud and a mental midget nobody respects.
If nothing else, having Bennett around is going to make those OTA and Training Camp press availabilities a hell of a lot more entertaining.