HOUSTON, TX – FEBRUARY 01: Martellus Bennett #88 of the New England Patriots answers questions during Super Bowl LI media availability at the J.W. Marriott on February 1, 2017 in Houston, Texas. (Photo by Bob Levey/Getty Images)

BOSTON – New England Patriots tight end Martellus Bennett will be allowed to stay in the country for the time being after a federal judge in Massachusetts today put a freeze on the executive order President Trump signed on Monday to deport the 9-year NFL veteran. The president ordered Bennett removed from the country early Monday morning, seemingly in response to the player saying he did not plan to attend the White House championship ceremony.

In the order, Trump described Bennett as a “very OVERRATED tight end who only played because the great Rob Gronkowski was hurt” and stressed that “Bennett has been let go by three teams in his career, showing how worthwhile he is to NFL teams and this country. He is the worst player on the New England Patriots, a team I otherwise know very well and have great respect for. Sad!”

After the Patriots knocked off the Falcons on Sunday night, Bennett was asked by reporters if he would go to the White House and responded: “I’m not going to go. It is what it is. People know how I feel about it.” Teammate Devin McCourty has since announced that he will also not be seen with Trump, telling Time magazine: “Basic reason for me is I don’t feel accepted in the White House. With the president having so many strong opinions and prejudices I believe certain people might feel accepted there while others won’t. I can’t imagine a way I go there.” Today’s action by the federal judge will at least temporarily prevent a deportation order for McCourty, as well.

The executive order stated that Bennett “is a threat to the American people because anyone who would not want to come to the White House must hate America. Also, he only had 62 receiving yards in the Super Bowl while Tom Brady, who is great and a great friend, had 466 yards. We don’t need those who aren’t the best of the best in this country.”

Constitutional experts say it is unlikely that Trump’s order will be upheld at any level, but there is some hope in the appeals court.

“A lot of Americans, judges included, hate the Patriots,” said one analyst. “So they may look past the letter of the law to take a chance to punish the team.”

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