This Martellus Bennett tweet has crossed my timeline a few times in the past hour:
While Bennett’s sentiments are generally accurate here — there are a lot of fans who treat athletes like avatars, and celebrating job loss (or, even worse, injury) is the height of this dehumanization — he isn’t the best spokesperson for this movement.
If you’ll recall, back in November Bennett was a member of the Packers and wanted to have season-ending shoulder surgery. Their medical staff, led by Dr. Pat McKenzie, thought that Bennett was still able to play. On his way out the door, Bennett bashed McKenzie, who is known as one of the more conservative doctors in the NFL:
“They tried to f— over me,” he continued. “Dr. [Patrick] McKenzie trying to cover his own ass. After trying to persuade me to play thru a major injury and me choosing to get surgery. They have access to all my medical records. My shoulder wasn’t where it is now at the beginning of the season. I f—– it up playing for the Packers.”
“Dr. McKenzie didn’t make [me] feel safe and was pushing [me] to play, which I thought was weird. Not that he was trying to get me play thru it but the way he was saying things. I didn’t trust him. So I got three other opinions from doctors, who all said I need to get it fixed. So I decided to do that. And they decided to waive me with some bullshit excuse. Failure disclose.”
After he was waived, Bennett was picked up by the Patriots, and went out and played for two weeks. Let that sink in: Bennett publicly slammed a team doctor for suggesting he could still play, and then went out and played for a different team. As a Packers fan, this really ground my gears. He’s one of the last people who should be giving this lecture.