BREAKING NEWS: New England Patriots Will Sign One Of The Best Tight End If…Read More.
Green Bay Packers tight end Jared Cook is set to become an unrestricted free agent in March and the New England Patriots should be the first in line to bring him on board. At 6-foot-5, 250 pounds, Cook would be the perfect replacement if Martellus Bennett signs elsewhere.
The New England Patriots have said resigning Bennett this offseason is a priority, however, it’s unlikely the team is going to be able to keep the tight end. Even though Bennett appeared to fit in nicely in New England, he’s going to command at on the market, especially after his impressive 2016 season in which he put up 701 receiving yards and seven touchdowns. With that kind of productivity, another team is going to pay him a lot of money.
If I was a betting man, my money would go on Bennett leaving town. His situation reminds me a lot of Darrelle Revis and his contract situation with the Patriots. Darrelle Revis signed a one-year contract with New England back in 2014, won himself a Super Bowl ring, and then bolted town during the offseason for a big payday.
Bennett appears to be on a similar path. The Chicago Bears traded Bennett to the Patriots last offseason, and just like Revis, Bennett won his first Super Bowl. Bennett has also made comments on NFL Network saying, “I’m going into free agency as a Super Bowl champion. You know they overpay Super Bowl champions.”
So with Bennett likely going to sign elsewhere, Cook would be a great fit for the Patriots. He’s abundantly athletic and fast. Belichick loves tight ends who can create mismatches and Cook can certainly do that. He’s coming off a down year for the Green Bay Packers, playing in 10 games and starting five. This is music to Bill Belichick’s ears, because now New England could easily sign him to a cheap deal, maybe even a one-year “prove it” deal.
Just to give everyone some true insight on the two tight ends, check out their career stats below. Both tight ends are turning 30 before training camp, and both of these players have remarkably similar numbers.
The Patriots have been a tight-end focused offense ever since they drafted Rob Gronkowski and Aaron Hernandez in 2010. Tom Brady loves to control the middle of the field and the red zone with big tight ends. Over the years guys like Scott Chandler, Michael Hoomanawanui, and Tim Wright were red zone threats catching touchdown passes from Brady.
Of course, Aaron Rodgers does have a say in this matter since he did mention in his post-NFC Championship press conference that he hoped the Packers would re-sign Cook. However, if Cook is looking for a career year or to be a focal point of an offense, signing with New England makes all the sense in the world.