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Patriots pass rusher Michael Bennett voices frustration with role on New England

Bill Belichick, Michael Bennett, Patriots

When the New England Patriots acquired defensive lineman Michael Bennett in a trade with the Philadelphia Eagles during the offseason, it was viewed as many as a move to replace Trey Flowers, who signed with the Detroit Lions in free agency.

However, six weeks into the 2019 campaign, it is looking nothing of the sort.

Bennett has played only sparingly thus far, and during Thursday night’s win over the New York Giants, the veteran played just 11 snaps.

Afterward, Bennett expressed some frustration with his decreasing role.

“I don’t know what’s happening,” Bennett said, according to Greg A. Bedard of Boston Sports Journal. “You have to ask Bill (Belichick). I wish I knew. If I had a better answer, I would tell you. You’ve got to ask them, man. I’m just trying to do what they ask me to do.”

Bennett’s playing time has dipped each game, with his snap percentages going from 49 percent in Week 1 to 22 percent on Thursday evening. The percentage has dropped each week.

As far as the 33-year-old potentially being traded by the Week 8 deadline?

“I don’t know. We’re about to find out,” he said. “I really don’t know what’s going on. I wish I knew. I’d tell you.”

Patriots head coach Bill Belichick has had nothing but good things to say about Bennett since training camp, and Bennett has reciprocated in kind, so this just seems to be a matter of Belichick feeling other players are more equipped to handle the job.

Bennett has logged just five tackles and 2.5 sacks thus far this season.