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Martellus Bennett Conference Call Transcript 3/17

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Q: How much are you looking forward to getting to work with Tom Brady and how do you figure to fit into the offense with Rob Gronkowski?

MB: I'm excited to meet the entire team: not just Tom, but everyone over there. Learn more about the Patriot Way. As far as fitting in, I'll just go out there and try and do what I do. I'm not really worried about that. I'm just trying to make plays.

Q: What were your initial thoughts when you found out you were traded?

MB: Yeah, I've currently been in California training and living life in the sun. My wife's getting tan and things like that and hanging out with my daughter, too. My daughter is at Disneyland. I was just living life and got the call and made the move and now I'm back to living life again.

Q: What kind of a combination do you think yourself and Rob Gronkowski will be able to provide at the tight end position?

MB: I think Gronk has always been an awesome tight end and I look forward to learning more about him. There are some things that he does that I don't do, and I'm pretty sure there are a lot of things that I do that he doesn't do, so it'll be a good challenge to push each other and continue to help us grow as individual players as well as a tandem to do what we can to help the team.

Q: What comes to mind when you think of things that the two of you do differently at the position?

MB: It just varies. There are a lot of things we do alike but you have to look to the tape. It's a long list of things. We kind of have different styles as far as playing but I think the one thing that we both love to do is run with the ball in our hands and I think for the last couple of years me and him have both been the best at that. He does a lot of good things. You just look at his numbers, making big plays, to showing up every week, always being reliable for Tom [Brady] and I'm just trying to come in and do the same thing.

Q: What has been your perception of the 'Patriot Way' from your time in the league thus far?

MB: I don't know too many guys around the league that were here that talked about it much. I think it's something that you've got to be in house to learn. I think I'll learn much more after I get in and figure out how things operate once we start to get into the flow of things. Right now it's just the offseason. The only thing I saw was this beautiful building.

Q: What are your impressions of linebacker Shea McClellin?

MB: I thought the last two years Shea has grown a lot as a player. Just watching him grow, becoming a better linebacker, running around, changing his body. He's an excellent guy. He's a great teammate, a great human being overall, but he's just a really fun guy to play with and he brings it every single week, so that's all you can really ask for in a teammate, a guy that's going to show up and bring it every single week and that's what you get with Shea.

Q: Were you expecting at all to be traded or is this something that blindsided you?

MB: I already knew that it was a possibility. I just didn't know where or what or when or how it was going to happen but I knew it was a possibility of coming so – just like any other thing in life you just be prepared to make sure you flow where the wind goes. [I] just try to be a dandelion.

Q: Do you have any feel for why things didn't work out for you with the Chicago Bears?

MB: I don't think it didn't work out in Chicago. I thought I played very well in Chicago. I put up great numbers, did some great things, made my first Pro Bowl there. Statistically I thought it was a great job. We had a coaching change, an organization change, the guys I came in to play for changed, so it was just another change.

Q: Do you think the Bears decided that you couldn't fit it anymore?

MB: I don't know. You'd have to ask them.

Q: What would you say your strengths are out on the football field?

MB: Well, I think it's a balance of being able to block, pass protect, and being a complete tight end is probably my biggest strength. I think run-after-catch when the ball is in my hands, being able to make things happen is probably one of my biggest strengths, and being able to get open in clutch situations.

Q: What are your thoughts on joining an organization that has had such a run of recent success? Do you feel like that's part of your career that may have been missing?

MB: I think losing can be contagious and I think winning can be contagious, so I'm just looking forward to getting out and playing and I'm going to try and contribute and continue that tradition.

Q: You dealt with a bit of a rib injury last year. How is your health now?

MB: I'm healthy. I prefer my ribs barbecued.

Q: Have the Patriots talked to you at all about the possibility of a long-term deal?

MB: That's between them and my agent. They talk to my agent. I don't do that part. I just do my job of becoming a better football player and I let my agent and the team and the organization handle that part.

Q: Do you think it is fair to say your relationship with the organization in Chicago soured and if so, when?

MB: I don't know. You'd have to ask them. I feel like talk to those guys, you have to talk to them. We were cool. I think it's just time for change. I don't take it personal. I'm all about the future so I'm a progressive person.

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