NFL Rumors: Patriots Were In Running For Michael Bennett Before Trade To Eagles

The Philadelphia Eagles bolstered their already-fearsome defensive line Wednesday, reportedly agreeing to terms on a trade that will send Seattle Seahawks defensive end Michael Bennett to Philly.

Bennett had been mentioned in various trade rumors earlier in the week, and several teams made pushes to acquire the three-time Pro Bowler. Included on that list, according to ESPN’s Dianna Russini, was the team Philadelphia defeated in Super Bowl LII — the New England Patriots.

Pass rush is one of the Patriots’ biggest areas of need entering 2018, as they never sufficiently replaced Chris Long, Jabaal Sheard and Rob Ninkovich following their departures last offseason. It would not be surprising to see New England address the position early in the 2018 NFL Draft.

The Patriots employed Bennett’s brother, tight end Martellus Bennett, last season, but they are releasing him, ESPN’s Field Yates reported Wednesday, citing a league source. Martellus Bennett had a $2 million option bonus due March 16, and releasing him frees up cap space for the Patriots.

ESPN’s Josina Anderson was the first to report news of the Bennett trade. Philadelphia reportedly will send a 2018 fifth-round draft pick and wide receiver Marcus Johnson to Seattle in exchange for Bennett and a seventh-rounder.

Bennett played in all 16 games for the Seahawks this season, tallying 8 1/2 sacks, 24 quarterback hits and 14 tackles for loss.

Thumbnail photo via Mark J. Rebilas/USA TODAY Sports Images

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