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Sports

NFL Training Camp Body Slams Are What Team-Building Is All About

Martellus Bennett got fined for fighting a teammate, but it'll all be forgotten once the games start.

by David Matthews
Aug 5 2014, 7:50pm

Witness Chicago Bears tight end Martellus Bennett get whipped down by rookie cornerback Kyle Fuller. Witness Martellus Bennett get up immediately and execute what looks to be a flawless underhook takedown. The two had to be separated by teammates and Bennett got fined and suspended because of this, but you can't help but love the enthusiasm on both ends here. The rookie is stepping up to the veteran tight end, which bodes well for when Fuller has to deal with the likes of Vernon Davis charging him in the open field. Meanwhile, Bennett shows that he's not taking shit from anyone this year, even a teammate. It's a win-win situation.

This all happened during Monday's practice, and you can watch the entire video here. They're both in full pads, so they were probably running some drills simulating game conditions. Fuller is a big, physical corner, Bennett is a mountain of a tight end. It's freaking hot as hell in northern Illinois during the month of August. This sort of thing is inevitable. 

Also inevitable: the choruses of tut-tutting over Bennett and the praising of the Bears for punishing him immediately. The Chicago Tribune's Dan Wiederer went so far as to say, "Bennett's act obviously has worn thin with the Bears' leaders" and that the team is being careful and letting a "volatile" player cool off before getting a chance to derail a season with high expectations. I say that last bit is phooey—it's the preseason, and benching him isn't going to make much of a difference. And did I say how damned hot it is in northern Illinois in the summer? Tempers rise along with the heat index when you're far from the cooling breezes of Lake Michigan. Easy prediction: When Bennett's "act" starts to resemble last year's 65 receptions, 700+ yards, and five touchdowns, Bennett will suddenly be a lot less volatile.

Small wonder: David Matthews is a Chicago Bears fan. Follow him on Twitter.