BOSTON (CBS) — Martellus Bennett is doing a lot of learning in his first season in New England.
The tight end is getting used to his new surroundings at Gillette Stadium. He’s learning just how competitive his new teammates are now that training camp is underway. He’s also learning how to play with not one, but two quarterbacks.
But the eight-year NFL veteran has done a similar juggling act before, so getting acquainted with both Tom Brady and Jimmy Garroppolo shouldn’t be a major challenge over the next six weeks.
“I’ve dated two girls at the same time,” Bennett joked with reporters following day two of Patriots training camp on Friday.
One thing is evident whenever Bennett opens his mouth: the guy has a great sense of humor. But he’s also serious when the situation calls for it, and it sounds like he’s fitting right in with his new teammates.
“Every single day I’ve been here since OTAs has been very competitive. Everyone does their job so well and everyone is competing,” he said of the first days of camp. “You have to bring it every day.”
And bring it he does. Bennett has matched that competitiveness on and off the field.
“Even in the cafeteria,” he joked.
Things got a little chippy during practice on Friday. Brady slammed his helmet to the ground after a pass of his was batted away. There was trash talk towards the defensive players when the offensive guys made a play, and vice versa. Football is alive and well at Gillette, and Bennett is pumped to be a part of it.
“That’s just football; it is what it is. I like guys with an edge, and I think a lot of guys on this team have an edge,” he said. “When they have that, it makes you bring it up a notch too.”
Friday was not the first time Bennett has seen the fire in Brady’s eyes, either. He’s been a member of the Patriots for just over four months, and has yet to play a meaningful snap with his new quarterback, but he’s already determined to match Brady’s rage when the football is snapped.
“He’s been competitive even when we’re just working out. It’s fun because he plays at such a high level that you have to match that level. Oil and vinegar don’t mix; you want to make sure you rise to the top when he rises to the top as well,” he said eloquently.
The Patriots are hoping that adding Bennett and his 23 career trips to the end zone to All Universe tight end Rob Gronkowski gives them an unstoppable dynamic duo at the position. Bennett, Gronk and Brady spent extra time together on Thursday in hopes of building even more chemistry.
Bennett says he’s played with some great quarterbacks over his football career, but none of them are like No. 12.
“Tom is just really good,” he said. “I tell them every day, ‘you guys are lucky, you’ve been playing with Tom Brady forever.'”
Though he’s having fun and fitting right in, Bennett is just happy to be back on the field after a rib injury limited him to 11 games in 2015. He’s set to become a free agent after this season, and while he wouldn’t mind a lengthy stay in New England, that’s not something he’s thinking about at this time.
“I’m not really thinking about next year. I’m just having fun playing football,” he said. “It’s just a joy to be out there playing the game. I’m enjoying the process. I don’t think about tomorrow, I just think about my todays.”
Bennett has his fun at times, but he’s already sounding like a Patriot.