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Stock Up: Martellus Bennett dominating all over the field, especially in the red zone
- Updated: August 5, 2016
Newly acquired Patriots tight end Martellus Bennett has been creating tidal waves in New England both on and off the field in the early stages of training camp. True, most fantasy scoring formats don’t award points for appropriate Jay Cutler bashings or mentioning you’ve dated two girls at once when asked about the QBs splitting reps; however, TDs have long been the life blood of fantasy, and Bennett, alongside fellow monster tight end Rob Gronkowski, has reportedly been putting on a show in the red zone.
In an article titled “Towers of terror rise in Foxborough,” the Boston Globe’s Jim McBride writes: “the twin tight end terrors (both are 6 feet 6 inches, with Bennett weighing in 10 pounds heavier at 275) have been the rage of camp, taking turns producing highlight play after highlight play…While they can produce from anywhere on the field, the pair are particularly daunting in the red zone because of their size, strength, and ability to get open. Gronkowski put on a red zone tour de force Monday, and Wednesday it was Bennett’s turn. Bennett caught two touchdowns from Tom Brady, leaving safeties Jordan Richards and Devin McCourty frustrated.”
Given his massive size, Bennett was always expected to make an immediate red zone impact with the Patriots, and these reports are encouragingly confirming his presence. A double digit TD season truly is not out of the realm of possibilities for Bennett, and we’ll see plenty of contests with both Gronk and the former Bear notching scores. As a 60% or better shot at a weekly TD, Bennett would deserve TE1 consideration on his scoring upside alone.
Yet, there’s a far greater fantasy ceiling that is currently going unrecognized in the expert community. Later, the paper mentions how, “Bennett continued to be a terror, catching four passes from Brady during a late two-minute exercise. He has been giving the safeties all they can handle.” Additionally, the article notes how every practice Bennett and Gronk work off to the side with Tom Brady and tight ends coach Brian Daboll, building chemistry on the entire route tree. Bennett’s also been reportedly picking Gronk’s brain on different techniques and adding to his personal repertoire, further broadening his already deep skillset. Those dismissing Bennett as a mere TD-dependent option are severely overlooking the former Bear’s potential to be a consistent and reliable target all over the field.
With his TD upside confirmed and his chemistry budding all over the field with a revenge-driven Tom Brady, Bennett is shooting up my tight end rankings. He leaps up to TE8, above Julius Thomas, and is up from the 120s to the 90s on my latest Big Board.