Report: Seahawks Traded Michael Bennett to Eagles Despite Better Patriots OfferMarch 8, 2018
The Philadelphia Eagles can't stop picking up wins over the New England Patriots.
During an appearance on NFL Network's Up to the Minute on Thursday, Ian Rapoport reported the Seattle Seahawks agreed to trade defensive end Michael Bennett to the Eagles even though the Patriots offered a slightly better package that included more appealing draft-pick compensation:
"This was a complicated situation. First of all, the Bennett brothers were going nuts trying to get it somehow so they could play together on the Patriots. I know Martellus Bennett was talking about taking less salary, trying to stick around so the Patriots could then trade for his brother. ... Now from what I am told, this was basically done, a done deal between the Seahawks and Eagles—this was Tuesday morning. Then the Patriots came in late and said, 'Well, maybe we'll give you this'—a little bit better draft-pick compensation. The problem was the [Seahawks-Eagles] deal was basically already done. ... The Seahawks are honorable people, and they did the deal that was basically consummated earlier."
In the end, the Seahawks ended up shipping Bennett and a seventh-round draft pick to the Eagles in exchange for a fifth-round choice and wide receiver Marcus Johnson.
For Seattle, the move was all about clearing cap space as the front office embraces wholesale personnel changes on defense. The Eagles were happy to aid the Seahawks in their pursuit of more flexibility.
By adding Bennett, the Eagles have substantially improved a defensive line that led the league in quarterback hits, pressures and opponents' average rushing yards last season, according to NFL Network's James Palmer.
Bennett, who has made three straight Pro Bowls, will also give the Eagles additional flexibility up front.
Although he's conventionally viewed as a defensive end, Bennett can swing inside to defensive tackle and open up additional pass-rushing permutations. That means he may line up at tackle alongside Fletcher Cox on obvious passing downs, with some combination of Brandon Graham, Chris Long and 2017 first-round pick Derek Barnett flanking them at defensive end.