What Was Traded?
Michael Bennett, formerly of the Philadelphia Eagles will suit up in red, white, and blue next season. The Patriots decided on this trade on March 8th, still unsure of the return of Trey Flowers. This moved proved to be worth it as Flowers found himself in Detroit. New England found a new defensive end, giving up a 2020 5th rounder for Bennett and a 7th in 2020.
Why So Low?
There’s no disagreement in the fact that even at 33 years old, Michael Bennett can still ball. So why did we trade him and a 7th for only a 5th? This was necessary to create cap space for more moves in March. Michael Bennett told the team he would not take a pay cut, and with his contract needing work, Howie Roseman found it best to trade him away. Bennett was going to cost $7.2 million next season, a fee Roseman deemed too high. With the money saved by trading away Bennett, the Birds were able to bring back players like Brandon Graham, and Ronald Darby.
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What Does This Mean?
Losing Michael Bennett certainly isn’t good for Philly. The 3 time Pro Bowler had 9 sacks and 30 quarterback hits this season. The Eagles are now down another defensive end, chipping away at one of their biggest strengths. However, there is obviously good that came from this trade. The Eagles entered 2019 free agency with $20 million and were able to free up a few million in the coming year. It was clear Michael Bennett wanted more money, but that was not going to happen on this team. There are plenty of positions that need more attention and Howie Roseman did what he had to do to make money to keep upgrading the roster. The Eagles now sit on much more cap, giving Roseman the power to do what he does best.
With stars on the D-line like Fletcher Cox, Brandon Graham, and the rising star Derek Barnett, there is still tons of talent. But, with the uncertainty of Chris Long returning for another year and retirement of Haloti Ngata, it’s hard not to be a little nervous. Roseman went out and brought in veteran DT Malik Jackson and brought back a former Eagle in DE Vinny Curry.
There are also options to draft another lineman. The Eagles have the 25th overall pick, and a few linemen are standouts. It’s unlikely the Eagles will trade up for a guy like Nick Bosa or Josh Allen. It wouldn’t surprise me to see the birds snag someone like Dexter Lawrence or Montex Sweat if available. Regardless of what the future holds, the Eagles still have a great defensive line that will be one of the most dominant in the league in 2019 and for years to come.
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