The Patriots acquired Martellus Bennett in March from the Bears, giving them an impressive second tight end to go with Rob Gronkowski. Bennett, who is notorious for starting his seasons strong only to fizzle once October comes around, doesn't figure to be a primary target in New England. But if the team opts to use multiple tight ends on a regular basis, he's still a candidate for 50 catches (roughly three per week). He'll also be a candidate to score against opponents who have great goal-line run defenses, since Bennett will give the Patriots another option to target. His best value is as a final-round pick up for those owners who spent a first-round choice on Gronkowski.
The Bears agreed to exchange Bennett for draft picks from the Patriots on Wednesday, Adam Schefter of ESPN reports. With the acquisition, the Patriots will trot out a receiving corps led by a two-headed monster at tight end for the first time since the 2012 season. Working in tandem with Rob Gronkowski, Bennett brings sure hands (66% career catch rate) and game-breaking potential (27 receptions of 20-plus yards and 14 touchdowns in three campaigns with the Bears) to the party in New England. In an offense that relies on precise route-running in order for Tom Brady to carve of the opposition, Bennett should prosper in his new climes.
Bennett (ribs) is unlikely to remain with the Bears in 2016, NFL.com reports. Bennett and the Bears have reportedly struggled to see eye-to-eye for some time now, and with Bennett owed $5 million heading into the final year of his contract, this offseason may ultimately mark the end of their relationship. Whether via trade or releasing Bennett, the well-rounded tight end could benefit from a change of scenery, and his absence would likely allow Zach Miller to build on his strong finish to last season.
Bears tight end Martellus Bennett (ribs) was placed on season-ending injured reserve Tuesday. Unable to play through a rib injury on Thanksgiving, Bennett then returned for Sunday's loss to the 49ers, catching three passes for 14 yards on four targets. He actually wasn't listed on the injury report last week, but it seems unlikely that this would be unrelated to the rib issue from a couple weeks ago. Zach Miller is now set to serve as Chicago's top tight end, with Khari Lee and Rob Housler providing depth. Bennett should be fine for offseason activities, as he's likely just dealing with broken ribs, according to NFL.com's Ian Rapoport.
Bennett caught three of four targets for just 14 yards in Sunday's loss to the 49ers. The veteran managed his lowest yardage output of the season in his return from a one-week injury absence, although his efforts mirrored the underachievement of the rest of the Bears offense Sunday. Bennett has struggled to replicate his career year from 2014, and he has found the going especially tough since the bye, as he is averaging fewer than 4 catches and 33 receiving yards per game. Another week removed form his injury, Bennett will look to step it up against the Redskins next Sunday.
Bennett (ribs) is active for Sunday's game against the 49ers, Rich Campbell of the Chicago Tribune reports. After logging full participation in each of the Bears' three practices during the week, Bennett's status for Sunday's game was never in much peril. While he's ostensibly healthy enough to see a high snap count, Bennett's seen his primacy in the passing game decline of late with the emergence of backup tight end Zach Miller. In the last four weeks, Bennett has recorded a modest 16 catches, 133 yards, and one touchdown.
|* indicates player did not play that week|
|WK||DATE||OPP||OPP RANK||OPP FPTS|
|11||11/20||@San Francisco 49ers||7||6.13|
|12||11/28||@New York Jets||2||4.75|
|13||12/04||Los Angeles Rams||25||8.25|
|16||12/24||New York Jets||2||4.75|
|3 Year Avg||101||69||705||5||36||10.22||102|