Martellus Bennett, the former tight end who had two stints with the New England Patriots, was not happy with Jimmy Garoppolo for missing the week four game of the 2016 season, and he let the world know. So why is this relevant now? Julian Edelman validated Bennett’s comments on a recent podcast. That year the Patriots had a record of 14 – 2 that season. They would complete the most remarkable comeback in the history of the NFL, winning Super Bowl LI before trading Jimmy Garoppolo shortly after.
Marty Bennett Rips Garoppolo On Double Coverage.
Julian Edelman confirmed that Bennett was not the only Patriots player upset with Garoppolo.
Bennett said, “Bro, we lost two games. One of them was because Jimmy Garoppolo was being a b—-. He decided not to play right before the game. Jacoby came out and played with a f—ed up thumb and played his heart out, but Jimmy was just being a b—- about it all. That’s why he… you can’t win with a b—- for a quarterback, first of all.”
There’s anger from Bennett, but is he furious at Garoppolo not playing due to being injured? If you listen, it’s not the injury that bothered him. It’s how Garoppolo went about things that bothered him.
Bennett continues, “That was the whole thing with him: He didn’t want to come out and do anything because his agent was trying to protect his body or some s— like that. Which, I can’t fault him for that. But like, you should have made that decision on Thursday. Now it’s Sunday. So anyways, he’s not going out there, so now Jacoby straps up and we lost to the Buffalo Bills. We shouldn’t have lost. It was just last-minute, trying to make adjustments for what Jacoby could do.”https://fansided.com/2022/06/27/julian-edelman-rips-jimmy-garoppolo/
The Patriots lost two games that season and had Garoppolo not waited to inform the team or had played, the Patriots may have gone on to have a perfect season. It’s a what might have been story, and the former teammates have good reason to be angry with Garoppolo.
Danny Amendola’s Opinion And Gronkowski’s Thoughts
Not every former teammate of Garoppolo thought he was soft. His former receiver, Danny “Playoff” Amendola, expressed confidence in him in 2017.
Danny Amendola said, “He can throw a good ball, he’s smart, he’s a football player, he’s tough. I think he’s ready.”https://www.masslive.com/patriots/2017/11/new_england_patriots_players_r_2.html
Gronkowski in 2017 on Garoppolo being traded. Even though some people in the organization were upset with what happened, nobody expected Garoppolo to be traded. Listen to Gronk.
Gronkowski’s said, “I mean, yeah, it is (weird), for sure. You’re not surprised, but at the same time you kind of are surprised. It’s definitely a little weird feeling…” “I definitely didn’t see that playing out, but it’s the NFL. You see things like that happen all the time now.”https://www.masslive.com/patriots/2017/11/new_england_patriots_players_r_2.html
One has to wonder how much impact the week four match up played in determining Garoppolo’s fate. Was it the cherry on top of the Garoppolo versus Brady battle that gave the Brady camp the final push? Although six years later, Garoppolo’s decision not to start still causes grief, one can imagine how much anger was felt when thinking of trading the quarterback. How did Kraft feel about truly Garoppolo?
Edelman Validated Bennett’s Comments & Thoughts On Jimmy
Edelman starts with saying, “I mean, I don’t know, we’re all football players here. But Jacoby, he tore ligaments in his thumb in the win against [the Texans in Week three]. So we go into Week four and I guess Jimmy was practicing and then decided not to play. Jacoby played with no ligaments in his thumb, which you can’t do that as a quarterback. You can’t grip [the football].
In that week four game Brissett went 17 of 27. The problem and real reason why the Patriots lost was not Brissett’s hand. It was lack of fundamentals and execution. The Patriots barely averaged four yards a carry and went 1-12 on third downs. They fumbled the ball five times, losing one.
“A lot of guys got mad at it. I’m not going to lie, I got mad about it. I sacrificed my body all day long. I was taking shots for this, numbing up that, ribs, broken ribs, shoulders, Grade three hanging on by limbs just to play. I can understand why Marty thinks like that.”
They gave up nine penalties for 75 yards. The team failed to stop Buffalo from converting on third down and lost the time of possession battle by 13 minutes. Would Garoppolo of playing really of made that much of a difference?
Edelman continued, “You also have to look, hey, [Garoppolo] got paid $30 million. So maybe I’m the dumb guy who didn’t make as much money to sacrifice for that team. I guess I played for the memories, not the money.”https://www.boston.com/sports/new-england-patriots/2022/06/27/julian-edelman-jimmy-garoppolo-martellus-bennett-comments/
Edelman seems upset that Garoppolo put himself or his wallet before the team. That’s not part of the ‘Patriots Way” mantra that means team first. The Patriots operate like a corporation, so it’s expected for players to realize their importance and to protect themselves to get a head.
Players around the league getting paid 25 percent or more of teams’ salary cap show that not everyone is playing to have fun. Not every player is willing to take one for the team like Brady. Not every player is playing for ‘memories,’ as Edelman put it. How things are going, the NFL may have to cap how much individual players can make per season shortly.
How Did The Patriots Truly Feel About Bringing Garoppolo Back?
Jimmy Garoppolo was rumored to be “plan A” in 2021. There were rumors all the way into the preseason that Patriots were working on acquiring him. However, one of the NFL’s top inside guys says that might not of been the case. Look at what Ian Rapaport tweeted.
Since being traded to the 49ers, Garoppolo has missed at least 17 games, but he’s also helped them reach a Super Bowl. So did the Patriots have any interest in Jimmy Garoppolo, or was it all mind games by Belichick in 2021. We saw them talk at Mac Jones’s pro day, and there was speculation that the Patriots convinced the Niners to avoid Jones.
Edelman On The Current Franchise Quarterback
Edelman thought Mac Jones hit a “rookie wall” in 2021. What does he feel about Jones going forward? And does he take a shot at Garoppolo when talking about the Patriots’ 2022 starting quarterback? You are the judge of that, but he put pressure on the defense if Mac Jones gets properly developed.
Edelman said on the I am Athlete Podcast, “If he strengthens up, and he uses last year for the starting point, and he doesn’t smell his own roses and he goes out and he gets better this year – because we ultimately see our biggest leaps from that Year 1 to Year 2 for that quarterback, I think he could be a good quarterback. He’s not quite there yet.”
Jones has been hard at work. He has been working with throwing coach Tom House to improve his arm. House has worked with Brady, and Eli Manning and was credited with Drew Brees’s return after injury in San Deigo. Mac Jones also reportedly had an excellent mini camp and OTAs.
The Gillette Gazette has several articles about Mac’s offseason so far. Mac also seems team-oriented, unlike the other quarterback Edelman talked about. It was just reported that Jones was working out with his wideouts while most others were enjoying the summer.
Edelman continues, “You’ve got to look at the Patriots back in 2001 to 2004, those first three Super Bowls. I mean, they weren’t tossing the ball out the stadium. It was a defensive-built team. That’s the thing that I’m worried about with the Patriots: Is their defense gonna be there to allow Mac to have this slow progression into becoming what he becomes?”https://sports.yahoo.com/mac-jones-succeed-2-julian-161000328.html
According to Pro Football reference, throughout the 2001 to 2004 seasons, the Patriots fielded the following ranked defenses: Sixth, Seventeenth, First, and Third. Brady played with a top 10 defense three of his first four years, meaning he had to do less and had the ball more. That allowed Brady to develop both confidence and skill.
It is a lot of pressure to put on the defense. A defense who just finished second in the NFL. However, if this Patriots team is following the early dynasty blueprint, the defense should take a major step back in 2022 before returning to glory in 2023 and 2024.
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