<
>

Seahawks' Michael Bennett stands by past criticism of Jimmy Graham

Just because Jimmy Graham is his teammate now doesn't change Michael Bennett's opinion that the tight end is overrated.

In 2014, after the Seattle Seahawks beat the New Orleans Saints in a divisional-round playoff game during their Super Bowl run, Bennett called Graham "overrated" and also told 710 ESPN Seattle in a postgame interview that the tight end was "one of the softest players in the NFL."

"I still feel the same way, just because he's on my team I don't stop feeling that way."
Michael Bennett on Jimmy Graham

On Thursday, in an interview with "Justin and Gee" on 710 ESPN Seattle, Bennett said his take on Graham hasn't changed, but he'll be a good teammate to him now that the tight end is on the Seahawks due to a blockbuster trade with the Saints in March.

"I still feel the same way, just because he's on my team I don't stop feeling that way," he said. "Obviously I'm going to be a better teammate to him ... I can't do the things I was doing to him when we were playing him."

Bennett said his feelings toward Graham aren't as "harsh" now "because he's my teammate now" but said the Seahawks' games against the Saints had helped to shape his opinion of him.

After the Seahawks' playoff victory in 2014, Bennett labeled Graham as a player that doesn't block. On Thursday, he said Graham will have to change his playing style to adjust to the Seahawks' offense.

"We have a different philosophy than what he had with the Saints, so the things he was expected to do with the Saints are going to be different here. Obviously we're a running team so he's going to have to block and do all those things," he said.

Bennett also said Thursday that he never requested a trade from the Seahawks, refuting a report that originated out of Dallas earlier this offseason.