The New York Giants took a chance signing Martellus Bennett last offseason, a player who had a reputation for being lazy during his stint with the Dallas Cowboys. But he was inked him to a one-year contract which ends at the conclusion of this season. The gamble General Manager Jerry Reese took on Bennett was a successful one, despite the poor production from the offense this season. Bennett hopes to remain a Giant not just for another season or two, but for many seasons.
"I’m happy I’ve been here and I want to be here for a long time," Bennett said. "But you all know how that goes."
Bennett had a career year with the Giants, now that he is free from Jason Witten's shadow. In 15 games he's posted 54 receptions for 611 yards and five touchdowns. Bennett has also proven to be an excellent blocker, sealing off the edge for the running backs, a skill that often goes unnoticed in tight ends. Bennett believes another year with the Giants would improve his level of play even more.
"To get another season in this offense, I think I can be twice as good as I was this year and continue to improve. As a player I’m still growing up. I haven’t hit a plateau or anything like that," Bennett said. "I’m just still increasing my ability and playing better week to week, whether it’s blocking, running routes, the way I’m getting open, things like that. Every week has been getting better and better and better. So I think the sky’s the limit."
Bennett was a second-round pick for the Dallas Cowboys where he was never really given an opportunity to showcase his ability. One reason for that was playing behind all-pro tight end Jason Witten. While he excelled as a blocker in the running game, he never produced as a receiver. The Cowboys opted not to extend his contract, allowing him to become a free agent. He proved to the NFL this year that he is a starting quality player.
"I think the biggest knock on me was who I was as a person, which nobody knew," Bennett said. "I think my teammates will tell you I’m one of the first people here every single day, I’m one of the last people to leave, and I go hard every day. Whether it’s practice or it’s a game, they know that I’m going to go hard."
If Bennett is to be re-signed, he hopes to recruit his brother Michael to play with him on the Giants. Michael Bennett is currently a defensive end for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, who has nine sacks this season, more than any player on the Giants' defense. The Giants may be looking for a replacement for Osi Umenyiora who is expected to walk after this season. Bennett has always hoped to play on the same team as his brother in the NFL.
"I don't know if New York can handle two Bennetts," he said.
If Michael Bennett's personality is anything like his brother's, the Giants' locker room could be quite the scene. However, Bennett stated he wasn't aware of any talks between his agent and the Giants.
Also…Football, Jason Witten, Martellus Bennett, Michael Bennett, New York, New York Giants, NFL, Osi Umenyiora