Well, that was a freebie.
One day after he was waived by the Packers, former Patriots tight end Martellus Bennett has been awarded to the Pats on waivers. The news was first reported by ESPN's Adam Schefter.
Former Packers’ TE Martellus Bennett claimed on waivers by the New England Patriots, per source.— Adam Schefter (@AdamSchefter) November 9, 2017
Bennett is in the first year of a three-year, $21 million contract signed in free agency, but as ESPN's Mike Reiss pointed out, the money already paid to him and the ability to cut him before next season meant his contract was unlikely to be a deterrent.
Any team claiming Bennett would be inheriting his contract, which extends through 2019 and calls for a $2 million bonus to be paid early in the 2018 league year. That is manageable both in the short and long term. They could also decide not to pay the bonus and not have any obligations on their salary cap for 2018 and 2019.
Acquired from the Bears for a fifth-round pick prior to last season, Bennett had a career-high seven touchdowns for the Patriots last season. He served as a big part of the Patriots offense, particularly after Rob Gronkowski was lost for the season.
Not interested in paying what Bennett would get in free agency, the Pats elected to trade for Dwayne Allen and let Bennett walk. Bennett has no receptions this season, while Bennett had 24 receptions for 233 yards and no touchdowns in seven games for Green Bay.