Michael Bennett Opens Up To Media, Says He Is Adjusting Well To The Cowboys Defensive Scheme

Matt Galatzan
November 11, 2019 - 7:20 pm

Matthew Emmons/USA Today Sports

DALLAS (105.3 The Fan) - Since being traded to the Dallas Cowboys at the trade deadline, defensive lineman Michael Bennett has been quiet in terms of his interaction with the media. That changed on Monday afternoon when Bennett opened up in his first at-large media interview with reporters, in which he spoke about his adjustment to his new organization. 

"It's been pretty much a good journey coming from New England, coming here," Bennett said. "A lot of great players, and I'm just trying to figure out how to get in there."

Part of what has made that adjustment easy for Bennett was his familiarity with the Cowboys scheme, which he intimated is pretty standard when it comes to your average NFL defense. 

"I knew a lot of it. I've seen them play a lot of football," Bennett told reporters. "It's all the same really when it comes down to it. The scheme is very familiar for something I'm used to. So, like I said I just came from the place with the most defenses in the league, so any other defense is pretty much easy to learn."

Perhaps more importantly though, was his preexisting relationship with Cowboys defensive backs coach Kris Richard, who Bennett spent years within Seattle, as part of the legion of boom, which was once one of the most dominant defenses the NFL has seen in recent memory. 

"We go way back," Bennett said of his relationship with Richard. "I think we grew up together, we played a lot of winning football together, I'm used to winning, and that's part of the process, we've always been friends, always been texting when I wasn't playing in the offseason, checking the family, so it’s always been a close relationship."

The veteran Bennett, who at 33-years-old is well aware of his current limitations, at least compared to what he used to be capable of, admitted that he is still learning a lot from the other players around him, and has been particularly impressed with Cowboys defensive end, DeMarcus Lawrence.

"I'm just a part of (the defense). DeMarcus is the key to it," Bennet said. "DeMarcus is one of the best players I've played with and I've played with a lot of great players in the NFL. Whether it was Ronde Barber, or whether it was Cliff Avril, Earl Thomas, Richard Sherman, Fletcher Cox, all of these great I've played with, Gerald McCoy. I always say DeMarcus Lawrence is at the top of that list of guys that I've played within this league. I think he's got great leadership, He's also a great captain, and he goes out there and puts it on the line every single week. I think he leads by example, so for me it's great to be around a young guy like that, to be able to feel that energy again, to feel excited about playing football, and I think it’s an honor."

As much as Bennett has enjoyed his quick stint with the Cowboys, however, he knows the end is approaching. That knowledge is also a major factor in why he restructured his contract with the Cowboys, in order to reduce it from a two-year deal to a one-year deal just over a week ago. 

"It could be my last year in the NFL. I've just been chilling, thinking about what's the best thing for my family, what's the best thing health-wise for my future. So, I just take it one game at a time, one year at a time. The opportunity is a great opportunity, but right now it’s just enjoying this game, enjoying these seven games, and playing football free, just enjoying myself, being a kid out there again. I'm an old man right now, but at the same time, I try to stay as young as I can."

Bennett will try to help the Cowboys defense, which was gashed by running back Dalvin Cook and the Minnesota Vikings on Sunday night, to get back on track as they begin a gauntlet of tough test that includes matchups with the Detroit Lions, New England Patriots, and Buffalo Bills over the next few weeks.