When reports broke during the NFL’s legal tempering period that the New England Patriots will trade for Indianapolis Colts tight end Dwayne Allen, it all but sealed the fate of unrestricted free agent Martellus Bennett: The veteran, who himself joined the Patriots via trade – coincidentally at the same conditions as his de facto successor – was on his way out of Foxboro.
Now, Adam Schefter reported, it became known where this way would lead him: to the Green Bay Packers.
Former Patriots TE Martellus Bennett is signing with the Packers, per source.
Bennett, who was a key contributor for the Patriots’ offense during their 2016 Super Bowl winning season – especially after Rob Gronkowski was placed on injured reserve – caught 66 passes and seven touchdowns for New England. While he did not become a part of another productive two tight end attack, he did his job despite struggling with an ankle injury throughout the season.
As a reward, Bennett won his first Super Bowl ring. And what appears to be a lucrative free agency contract in Green Bay:
As a result of Bennett signing with the Packers, the Patriots - depending on the contract - might be in line for another compensatory draft pick. Once the details of the contract become public, we should get a clearer picture. One thing seems certain, though: It will either be a third or at worst a fourth round selection.
EDIT: Wow, Bennett signed a cheap 3-year, $18.45 million deal with the Packers. That is $6.15 million per season and is much less than what most anticipated. It should still net the Patriots a 4th round compensatory pick, but it’s fair to wonder if the Patriots should have kept Bennett at this price instead of acquiring Dwayne Allen.