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The moves are coming in fast and furious now. The Patriots bided their time to begin the offseason, but in back to back days they made significant trades. On Wednesday evening, ESPN’s Adam Schefter reported that the Patriots and Chicago Bears agreed to a deal sending tight end Martellus Bennett and a sixth round pick to the Patriots for a fourth-round draft pick.
Bennett is an instant upgrade for the Patriots at the second tight end position behind Rob Gronkowski. The Pats gave up relatively nothing for a player who is one year removed from catching 90 passes. The move allows the Patriots to get back to their two tight end offense that allows them to play all kinds of formations. Bennett is a fine run blocker as well as a pass catcher. Having Bennett on board allows the Patriots to play anything from two tight ends Ace set power football to five-wide empty sets without having to change personnel. This could mean a return of the hurry up high-octane Patriots attack that has been missing the last few years.
The 6’7″ Bennett played in 11 games last year catching 53 passes before ending the season on injured reserve with a rib injury. If he can grasp the Patriots playbook than the team has gotten themselves a steal. After being drafted by the Cowboys Bennett famously said: “Any quarterback that can get Jessica Simpson, I’ve got to play with him”. Now he gets to play with Tom Brady, who I am sure he knows is married to Super Model Gisele Bündchen.
In other Patriots news, the team acquired veteran running back Donald Brown. Brown was a first-round pick of the Indianapolis Colts out of UConn. Brown has never lived up to his draft status as his best year was 2011 when he ran for 645 yards. The last two years in San Diego he has played in 22 games rushing for 452 yards and a less than ideal 3.1 yards per carry. On the bright side, he can catch the ball out of the backfield which could help the Pats if Dion Lewis does not return to form following his torn ACL.