After saying he was finished talking to the media a few weeks ago, Michael Bennett finally broke his silence in an eight-minute session with reporters on Thursday afternoon.
He addressed his (lack of) playing time and comments from a TV analyst that he wasn't happy about not being a starter (see story), but he also talked about a lot more. He's genuinely an interesting guy and a hard one to figure out.
I guess he had a lot to say after a few weeks. He even said he's currently reading "Beyond Religion" by the Dalai Lama and would recommend it. So … if you're looking for a light read.
Anyway, since we haven't heard from Bennett in so long, here he is on a variety of topics:
On playing with Fletcher Cox: "I think Fletch is one of the best defensive players I've ever played with. And that's a compliment because I have played with a lot of great players over the years. I think Fletch is one of the best inside rushers and just one of the best players. I told him the other day, I appreciate the way Fletch plays the game."
On facing Kirk Cousins: "He's so cerebral. I think Kirk does a great job of seeing what the defense is doing and being able to find the check downs and get the offense in the right position. Obviously, you pay a guy $90 million, he's good at something. I think Kirk does a great job at that. Every time I've played him, to me, he's one of the toughest quarterbacks because he takes a lot of hits but always gets back up."
On the last drive in Tennessee: "I think Marcus Mariota played a great game. Everybody in the NFL gets paid and I think Marcus Mariota, he played one of the top games I've seen from a quarterback in a long time. He was able to break the pocket, do some things I haven't seen him do in a while. He just played a great game at the end of the day."
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On getting his first sack last week: "Yeah, it's always good to get a sack. You come to a new team and you want to be able to find a way to contribute in a positive way. And I think getting a sack or making a big play on defense or something that has an impact on the team and can help the defense keep fueling the fire to make those plays."
On playing on the right side of the line after years on the left: "It's like writing with your left hand for 10 years and then they tell you to write with your right hand. It's harder, right? It's one of those things."