Former Patriots defensive end Michael Bennett was on radio row today at the Super Bowl with Felger & Mazz and had some interesting thoughts on his time with the Patriots, why he ended up being traded to the Cowboys, and which Patriots defender should have gone to the Pro Bowl and deserves a contract extension (pay close to attention to that part, Bennett is obviously brilliant).
Here are Bennett's most interesting comments and then we'll get into our thoughts about them.
On what went wrong during his time with the Patriots...
"I don't think nothing happened with me and Belichick. I just think I didn't fit into the scheme ... it was a whole 'nother defense, a defense no one had seen before, honestly. A defense where you had one defensive lineman, three linebackers down. It was just an attacking defense and I guess I didn't fit into that defensive scheme. ... Yeah, I think two-gapping is another thing. We just didn't have many defensive linemen on the field. I think things changed."
On defensive line coach Bret Bielema
"Brett is a cool guy. I think we just ... we had two people who believed in something strongly, I'm a guy who wants to be on the field ... For me, the situation just wasn't a great situation. I came from Philly where we played the 4-3 defense just rushed the passer all the time. ... I worked, I went through the two-a-days with the Lions and the Titans."
On Mike Pennell's comments about Bielema.
"Mike's situation was different than mine. ... I think for (Bielema), it's different when you come from the collegiate level ... you come in and everything a coach says on the collegiate level people have to listen to. Now, you come to the NFL, there are guys who have been in more games than you've coached or they've been in big NFL games. They've made a lot of money. And now they want to be talked to as men. They're not going to be talked to as you would talk to a child. You talked to people who have wives, who have kids, who have mortgages, and they want to be able to come to you and they want you to be honest.
“I think for him, that was what Mike really wanted. He wanted you to be honest: 'Coach, where am I really at? If you change the depth chart, give me an opportunity to understand what I need to do to get my position back.' I feel like for Mike, that's where his battle was with Bret. And I think over at the end, it just didn't fit for him.
"The coach and the player have to be able to adjust, with my perspective in the league."
On the defensive line being a weakness after Bennett and Pennell...
"I think Lawrence Guy should have been in the Pro Bowl, in my perspective. I think sometimes d-tackles get looked over because they don't have the sack numbers. But Lawrence Guy, a guy who was able to play all up and down the line, they asked him to do a lot of stuff. I think he should definitely get a new contract when it comes down to it because he's able to do so much for the defense."
(Hmmm, I wonder where I've heard that before ... #suckitfelger)
"At the end, we just didn't fit in. They had Chase (Winovich), they had all these guys who had been the Patriot Way before we got there so. I think sometimes you just don't fit, some relationships just don't mesh the way they will. Our skillsets were a lot different. At the end, of course we wanted to be there and play in big games."
On whether or not he was upset at the trade to Dallas...