After being traded by the Seattle Seahawks to the Philadelphia Eagles — Michael Bennett’s time in Philly is sure to come to an end in the next few weeks. It’s not because he played terribly or had a bad attitude, but rather he would not like to come off the bench in 2019.
Why would the Eagles part with their most productive defensive end from last season, especially when he carries a seemingly reasonable $7.2 million cap number for 2019? No. 1, they’ll be returning both starters and Bennett has made it clear that he prefers not to come off the bench. No. 2, the outspoken 33-year-old would likely make his feelings known again, privately or publicly.
And the Eagles, who declined to comment through a team spokesman, don’t want an unhappy player or any further potential disruptions to their locker-room culture. Bennett is an acquired taste, and for the most part, he was a loyal soldier in his one season in Philadelphia, but mostly only after he became a starter.
Not only would he lose playing time, he wasn’t willing to take a paycut to stay on the Super Bowl contender.
“I’m not willing to take a pay cut, I actually want a pay raise,” he said on NFL Network.
The 33-year-old Bennett is a versatile defender who was able to play inside and outside, and was a steady contributor during the 2018 season as he racked up nine sacks for the Birds.
“Whatever team I go to, I want to get paid more than what I’m getting paid right now,” he added.