For a while now, everybody assumed that Philadelphia Eagles defensive end Michael Bennett is frustrated with his non-starter role. He makes it clear that it is just not the case.
We could all assume that this was going to happen, right? Of course. Back in the Spring, the Philadelphia Eagles traded for Seattle Seahawks defensive end, Michael Bennett. A lot of Eagles fans were quite worried about what would happen in the locker room considering that Bennett had a bad reputation with teammates over the last year or so.
The Eagles obviously weren’t worried about that as they have been the team that cures those chemistry issues off the field. LeGarrette Blount supposedly would hate his time in Philadelphia while Jay Ajayi would be nothing more than a constant problem to coaches. Clearly, that wasn’t the case at all last season.
Naturally, the Eagles gave Bennett a shot and nobody outside of the Philadelphia fan base wanted it to work out. And ever since NBC’s Cris Collinsworth blurted out that Bennett was ‘unhappy’ with a coming off the bench role during week one, everybody assumes that Bennet is the odd man out in the locker room. Unfortunately for the doubters, that’s not the case.
Where’s Bennett’s head at?
The Philadelphia Inquirer’s Jeff McLane had the chance to speak to Bennett recently on the topic, and Bennett was quite honest. While he admits that he does desire more playing time (who doesn’t?) he is not upset with his role. He is merely adjusting to it.
"“You always want to play more, but in this situation, you just want to win,”“We’re 2-2, so the most important thing is not my individual stats or the individual playing time,” Bennett said. “It’s really about the wins. Obviously, you want to be in a situation where we’re in 4-0, or at least 3-1. So for me, it’s just about winning. That’s the true test of character — how many ‘W’s you can get.”"
Bennett also touched base on the fact that he is playing on the opposite side of where he’s used to playing. While that doesn’t sound like a tough adjustment to anybody else, switching sides does have a major effect on players. And as Bennett plays in a much more limited role behind Derek Barnett, he doesn’t have a ton of opportunities to really get settled in on gameday.
This week will be a different story though as Derek Barnett has been ruled out for Sunday. With the second-year defensive end out, Bennett will get an opportunity to play a much more significant role for the first time with the Eagles defense. So for those who are wondering, Bennett just wants to win football games. There’s no bad blood in the Eagles locker room.