FRISCO, Texas – Though not officially finalized yet, the Cowboys have agreed to trade a conditional 2021 seventh-round draft pick to the Patriots for Michael Bennett. Here's my scouting report on the veteran defensive lineman:
Name: Michael Bennett
College: Texas A&M
Games Studied: 2019 (Patriots vs. Miami, Buffalo, Washington)
- Played all over the defensive line for the Patriots. They likely traded for him this past spring due to that flexibility. The Patriots look for players who can function week to week playing multiple positions.
- Should line up as a nickel tackle for the Cowboys with the ability to rush from defensive end. Would give them a combination of DeMarcus Lawrence, Maliek Collins, Robert Quinn and Bennett on those sub-package downs.
- I was surprised at how strong he plays for his age (33 years old). When he extends his hands, he can control blockers. There were several snaps in the Miami/Washington games where he just flat overpowered the blockers at the point of attack.
- Like all good pass rushers, Bennett can take that long step to gain ground on a blocker. We often see that with Lawrence. When they can get to the corner, it makes it hard on the blocker. Don't see a lack of quickness here. Still can win when on the move.
- Uses his hands like Lawrence to combat the blocker in order to break him down. This works well against guards that struggle with a rusher who plays with quickness and technique.
- Bennett has a feel for how to work the gaps to defend the run. If he does have an issue, there were times where he got caught on a block while he was attempting to work on the move. The Redskins had a long run due to the fact he got turned on the play.
- Even on a hot day in Miami, he did a nice job of staying after the ball and hustling to make plays.
- He has always been productive wherever he's played. Promise that the front office did their research on him before they made this trade.
- Scouts I've talked to about him say he loves football and playing the game, but he's a different cat and always been. Feel like passing game coordinator Kris Richard had a big hand in bringing him over for the stretch run and will be the point man on this transition.