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Patriots reportedly trading three-time Pro Bowler Michael Bennett to the Cowboys



The New England Patriots traded Michael Bennett's defensive end to the Cowboys of Dallas for the seventh round, which could become the sixth round pick, to Adam Schefter of ESPN . The trade ends Bennett's controversial hiring in New England, highlighted by stopping in Week 7 for behavior detrimental to the team after expressing his dissatisfaction with his defense role in front of his position coach.

The trade brings Bennett back to the NFC East, where he last played in the 201

8 Eagles with the Philadelphia Eagles. Bennett was one of the NFL's most productive corners in the second half of the 2018 season, finishing with 68 tackles, 37 rushes and 22 stops in just 716 clicks (after 70 pressures, 44 rushes and 32 stops in 931 snaps in 2017 with Seattle Seahawks). Less clicks led to an increase in production for Bennett, who had 30 hits and nine hammers (his highest in both categories since 2015)

Bennett took a pay cut for 2019 when he restructured his deal with the Patriots ($ 6.5 million), but an increase in 2020 ($ 10.25 million). The Cowboys can save $ 8.25 million in cap if they decide to split ways with Bennett after the offseason.

New England was looking at a 4-3 primary defense when the Patriots traded a fifth round pick in 2020 for Bennett in March. After their acquisition, the Patriots signed Jamie Collins backfield and defensive tackle Danny Shelton, bringing them back in style 3-4, which meant hitting Bennett's overall fit. He only played 130 defensive snaps in Week 7.

Bennett has 2.5 sacks and five tackles in six games with the Patriots this season, though he doesn't play anywhere near a full set of shots. He has 65.5 sacks, 13 forced strikes and 182 hits in 11 reserves over 11 seasons and can be rejuvenated in Dallas.

Cowboys are by week, so Bennett won't make his debut until Week 9 against the New York Giants, Dallas is looking for help on the defensive end, as the Cowboys were tied for 16th in the NFL with 17 sacks, receiving limited production by Demarcus Lawrence (3.5 bags). Robert Quinn (6.0 sacks) suffered a rib injury in Sunday's win over the Eagles, but he is expected to return against the Giants. Bennett will serve as a rotation piece behind Quinn and Lawrence, supporting Dallas' speed of passage as the Cowboys prepare to make the NFC East title run.

In addition to suspending New England week, Bennett has been marred by controversy over the past few seasons. Leaving him in Philadelphia led to a desire for a postseason raise, which he said was not happy with his playing time before Derek Barnett suffered a season-ending injury and a refusal to switch sides.

The legal issues also followed Bennett, stemming from an April 2017 incident in which Bennett claimed officers used excessive force on him and said police were "threatening to hit my head". Clark County Sheriff Joe Lombardo said he found no evidence that officers who encountered Bennett had racially profiled him or used excessive force against him, and the incident remains pending. Bennett claims he injured a 66-year-old paraplegic who worked at NRG Stadium to control access to the pitch at Super Bowl LI, but charges were dropped due to insufficient evidence.

Bennett is looking to resurrect his career in Dallas, his fourth team in the last three seasons. The pairing with the Cowboys seems odd, given the recent history of Bennett, but the Cowboys are clearly dealing with the three-time Pro Bowl defensive end that has been productive for nine games.


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