The Patriots are putting the finishing touches on their deal with defensive end Michael Bennett. However, before they finalize the deal, one of the things the Patriots wanted to know was what Bennett planned to do the during the national anthem?
Would he stand? Sit? Kneel? Or remain in the locker room?
On Monday night, Bennett told the public what he told the Super Bowl champs: He’s staying in the locker room.
The noted anthem protester made that announcement during a speech at Princeton University.
“I explained to them is that my integrity mean everything,” Bennett said, via ESPN. “I think they respect that about me, they respect who I am as an individual.”
Patriots Owner Robert Kraft, coach Bill Belichick, and quarterback Tom Brady, have all voiced support for President Trump at various times. With the president’s well-known public stance against anthem protests, one might think that Bennett’s presence in New England could become a source of friction between the Patriots brass and their friend in the Oval Office.
Though, when asked about those relationships, Bennett sounded a hopeful tone.
According to CBS in Boston:
With regard to the relationships that Trump has with owner Robert Kraft, head coach Bill Belichick, and quarterback Tom Brady, Bennett said he looks forward to having discussions with his new bosses and co-workers. The author of a book titled ‘Things That Make White People Uncomfortable,’ Bennett does not intend on shying away from any topics.
‘I think it’s important not to to run away from those conversations, or not hear their ideas about why they think the way they do,’ Bennett said, per ESPN. ‘I think it’s an opportunity for growth to have those conversations. If we don’t allow ourselves to have those conversations, we’re stunting our growth.’
Michael, will be the second Bennett brother to play for New England. His younger brother Martellus played for the Patriots in 2016 and 2017.
Follow Dylan Gwinn on Twitter @themightygwinn