Martellus Bennett: I told to not claim me, but Patriots did anyway

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It’s easy for those who believe the theory that Martellus Bennett talked his way out of Green Bay, because he left enough breadcrumbs to make not just a trail, but a sandwich.

But after his return to the field with the Patriots last night, he said he had to be talked into reporting to New England. He said he told his agent to tell teams not to claim him, since he wanted to get surgery on an injured shoulder. And even after the Patriots did, he said it took a conversation with coach Bill Belichick to convince him.

“When Bill called and said they claimed me, I was like, ‘No [bleeping] way,’” Bennett said, via Phill Perry of NBC Sports Boston. “Then he was like, ‘What’s going on?’ And I told him . . . We had a quick conversation and I was just like, ‘Let me think about it and I’ll call you back.’

“Even then, it wasn’t like, ‘Hey, you want to come?’ It was like, ‘Let me just call you back in a few minutes. Give me a chance to think about it and regroup.’ Because I don’t even know if I went through the seven stages of grief yet. I’m probably on Step 3.

“I think the group of guys on this team couldn’t be a better place for me to, with what I’m going through right now, this situation, it couldn’t be a better place for me, all the familiar faces and friends and things like that. It’s been good to have those guys around.”

He must have felt better, since the Packers had already ruled him out last week, but he managed to get across country and prepare himself to play seven snaps last night, catching three passes for 38 yards. Asked why the shoulder allowed him to play with Tom Brady when it was too painful to with Brett Hundley, he said it was a matter of motivation.

“It wasn’t where I was, it was just about the injury,” Bennett said. “It was like one of those things, I talked to six or seven doctors about it and it could go either way. It was like one of those things I felt I should get fixed. And then after trying to get it fixed and getting waived, you just get that vengeance in your heart. It’s just like, ‘All right, that’s how you’re going to do it? Then [expletive] it. Let’s go ball.’ ”

He also knows that explanation won’t satisfy the former Packers teammates, who rode to the defense of team doctor Pat McKenzie after Bennett said he was encouraged to play hurt there

“I got criticism from all of my former organizations,” Bennett said. “I mean, [expletive]. At this point, it’s like I’m rubber and you’re glue. Anything you say bounces off me and sticks back to you . . .

“Like I told the guys, ‘In order for the Phoenix to be reborn, he must first turn to ashes.’ ”

When you quote both Greek mythology and Pee Wee Herman, you know it must be serious.

87 responses to “Martellus Bennett: I told to not claim me, but Patriots did anyway

  1. He’s not a full-time tight end right now. He was on the field for seven plays. They aren’t going to put him on the field for more that 20 snaps a game. Belichick will manage him. That probably was not an option in GB because they were paying him more and it would have looked bad. He’s in a good situation.

  2. “I got criticism from all of my former organizations.”

    A person with adequate mental health and emotional maturity might think “Hey, I may need to adjust my behavior.” But not Ol’ Marty B. Just keep deflecting and blaming others

  3. Even with a bum shoulder it is probably tough to say no when the Greatest NFL Head Coach of All-Time (Bill Belichick), and the Greatest NFL General Manager of All-Time (Bill Belichick) comes calling.

    Also helping to sway Bennett’s decision may have been the text message he got from the Greatest NFL QB of All-Time (Tom Brady), and the Greatest NFL Player of All-Time (Tom Brady).

    Hopefully Bennett can at least contribute as a receiving TE down the stretch and into the playoffs. There is no way that the Pats will give Bennett that $2 million roster bonus at the start of the 2018 league year, but if Bennett decides he wants to keep playing after he gets his shoulder fixed in the off-season, I imagine he will find work and a decent salary with the Pats or Seahawks. I doubt any other teams will touch him at this point.

  4. He talked to six or seven doctors and it could go either way, but the Packers doc was wrong for saying he could play?

    The Packers doc told him he could play and he said he couldn’t, but then he could play and did play for the Pats?

    I think the Packers have a claim.

  5. Wow, the guy is a consummate liar. Had multiple drop games in GB and after being “forced” to play by GB Dr. McKenzie, he felt unpressured to play vs Denver for the Pats. Good riddance. He has to answer for how he bailed on his team. Current and former Packers have said as much.

  6. “Even then, it wasn’t like, ‘Hey, you want to come?’ It was like, ‘Let me just call you back in a few minutes. Give me a chance to think about it and regroup.’ Because I don’t even know if I went through the seven stages of grief yet. I’m probably on Step 3.

    There’s a lot of idiots in the NFL today, but these Bennett brothers take the cake.

    WTF?

  7. No matter how he wants to spin it, he quit in Green Bay and that is not someone you want anywhere in the locker room, training table or on the field.

  8. Seems like the Packers got screwed over on this one. Have 0 respect for Bennett as a man, but he did figure out a way to jump off a sinking ship in on to a real deal chance to get a ring… Steange situation…

  9. No team will force you to play if you don’t want to, duh. But, it’s obvious we know what’s behind that close door.

  10. “When you quote both Greek mythology and Pee Wee Herman, you know it must be serious.”

    Not to mention, using the word “like” like a 13 year old girl….

  11. uncommon1 says:
    November 13, 2017 at 6:37 am
    “I got criticism from all of my former organizations.”

    A person with adequate mental health and emotional maturity might think “Hey, I may need to adjust my behavior.” But not Ol’ Marty B. Just keep deflecting and blaming others.
    _______________________________________________________

    If that were true, who is the first person you can think of modeling his behavior?

  12. He’s right — it’s about Motivation. Only who wants the guy for a teammate. He’s not “motivated” so he doesn’t play?

    Include me out.

  13. Blount did the same thing to Pittsburgh. The cheatiots need to have the hammer laid down for all their blatant tampering. Strip all their draft picks for the next 3 years

  14. This poor guy, he’s just been oppressed his whole life I just feel so bad for him, in fact his brother has also been oppressed his whole life the poor Bennett bros. just can’t catch a break or a pass in Marty’s case.

  15. .
    No one has brought up the fact that had the Patriots not claimed him on waivers, Bennett could have gone to Pittsburgh. The Steelers haven’t had a quality red zone TE in years. Even in his hampered state he could have been a difference maker for Roethlisberger and Co.
    .

  16. Packers have no claim. They’re saying he had a bum shoulder pre signing and didnt tell them. No proof of that. It may even have been slightly torn and he wouldnt have known necessarily.

  17. Blount and bennett were both cut. Are we to believe belichick Jedi mind tricked teams into cutting when they could have suspended?

    Then both players went on waivers where any one of 30 or so teams could have claimed them. More Jedi mind tricks and no teams do.

    Darn those Belichick mind tricks!

  18. A good defense will make him a non factor, just use press coverage and jam his shoulder real good when he comes off the line. That is, if his shoulder injury is actually a thing and not a fairy tale.

  19. torchtheweb says:
    November 13, 2017 at 6:45 am
    Wow, the guy is a consummate liar. Had multiple drop games in GB and after being “forced” to play by GB Dr. McKenzie, he felt unpressured to play vs Denver for the Pats. Good riddance. He has to answer for how he bailed on his team. Current and former Packers have said as much.

    ————
    Go for it dude. We will watch and cheer for you.

  20. Lot of salty Pats haters jumping all over this to get over the embarrassment of having to sleep with their mommy again last night. You are all missing the key points here:
    1) A torn rotator cuff is playable but won’t get better without surgery – a common football issue.
    2) That decision is more for the team than a doc. With Rodgers gone it’s a tough call, but I’d edge toward saying play until the Div is definitely lost. But not if it means losing the player – clearly the Pack had decided after 7 games Bennett hadn’t been that great to worry about upsetting anyway.
    3) And Pack lose my sympathy in cutting him and 100% falsely claiming the shoulder was “undisclosed” to get out of the contract. He played most of last season banged up (ankle, SHOULDER, knee) but in their rush they didn’t MRI before signing. They knew who Bennett was, and about the shoulder.

  21. learysdisciples says:
    November 13, 2017 at 7:19 am
    That’s a good story…almost believable.

    ——————-
    In so many words he basically said “I saw no point in trying any more so I quit on my team and bailed. But then I saw a more attractive offer so I took it”. I find that pretty believable actually.

  22. straighcashhomey says:
    November 13, 2017 at 8:04 am
    patriotmaleorgy-must stink to be a colts fan huh?
    ————————————————-

    At least in Brissett the Colts have a promising young QB to build around if they can extend him before his rookie contract expires, and they do not cause a premature end to his career as the Colts management have apparently done with Luck.

  23. pftstory says:

    I think the Packers have a claim.
    ^^^^^^^^^^^^

    The Packers can make a “claim” – even if it’s not valid. They’ll never see a penny of reimbursement from MB because they cut him.

    They have a valid claim of gross mismanagement against TT and MM, the simplest resolution would be to cut both of them.

  24. For those that think the packers got hosed on this one: who was it that released Bennett?

    Bennett played for the Pats last night because Green Bay threw a temper tantrum and cut him, rather than let him get the surgery he wanted. If they weren’t so stupid, they would have let him get the surgery and then no body gets his services. But by cutting him, the Patriots are the ones that get a player looking to play hard for a ring. Packers screwed this up bigly by releasing him like morons. I agree with all that has been said about Bennett in the comments above. But Green Bay is STUPID for releasing him

  25. “Ok. So you play when Pats want you to but won’t when Packas want you? We get it.”

    He was interviewed after last night’s game and specifically asked how he could play for the Pats if injured but not the Pack. His response was “Its not if you can play but if it makes sense to play”.

    Ie; playing hurt and risking further injury for a team that is falling apart in the Pack and has no chance at a Super Bowl, no it didn’t make sense to take that risk. Play for the Pats and a chance at another ring, worth the risk. Owners and GMs make business decisions all the time that screw players over. Here’s a case of a player making a similar type of business decision.

  26. “I got criticism from all of my former organizations.”

    A person with adequate mental health and emotional maturity might think “Hey, I may need to adjust my behavior.” But not Ol’ Marty B. Just keep deflecting and blaming others.
    _______________________________________________________

    If that were true, who is the first person you can think of modeling his behavior?

    His brother.

  27. As a Pats fan, I was really hoping they wouldn’t hitch another ride on the crazy train that is Martellus Bennett. When I’d heard they grabbed him off waivers, then I was hoping that he’d just come in and contribute while keeping his mouth shut. Looks like I’m 0-for-2.

    While the Pats can certainly use him, they definitely don’t NEED him. I really would have preferred they had left him alone.

  28. joe6606 says:
    November 13, 2017 at 7:42 am
    Blount did the same thing to Pittsburgh. The cheatiots need to have the hammer laid down for all their blatant tampering. Strip all their draft picks for the next 3 years
    ————————————————————————————
    In both situations the team released them and they passed through waivers. As reigning super bowl champs, the Pats were last on the list. As long as he isn’t a distraction or bad for the locker room, he was worth the pick up for now. It’s a very simple equation for BB. Other teams over think it. MB only out there for seven snaps, Duane Allen was used primarily as a blocker. McDaniels creates the impression that MB will catch passes, DA blocks only. What does he do? Calls for a pass play in the end zone to DA that all but sealed the win. It’s the little things that add up, so continue whining and crying while the Pats rack up another win.

  29. If there ever was a conspiring collaborating plan for the pats to fleece the packers via martellus, than Barr putting down aaron was a cherry on top of belichicks banana split.

  30. wib22 says:
    November 13, 2017 at 8:23 am

    How can the cheats still get away with these moves?
    _________________________________________________________

    Only chip could equate the waiver process with ‘these moves’ lol.
    At least 28 teams, including your dollfins, had the opportunity to put in a waiver claim that would have kept him from New England.

  31. Just shut your mouth. There’s no way you can spin this.

    .. and to all those calling out the Patriots, give it up!

    Bennett is the one talking out both sides of his blow hole, and he is going to have to deal with the fallout on this. All the Patriots did was claim a player they KNOW can help them win, provided he’s healthy enough to play. More power to them. Don’t pretend you wouldn’t want your team to do the same thing!

  32. Who would put a waiver claim for someone who refuses to play because of a “shoulder injury” (bennett) or literally walks out on the team (Blount). Both players actively engaged in horrifically disruptive behavior for the sole purpose of getting cut so they could join the team of their choosing. If you don’t think belicheat had no role in these behaviors you’re very naive

  33. For those that think the packers got hosed on this one: who was it that released Bennett?
    ======

    The Packers didn’t get hosed at all.

    They’re going to get their money back, and Bennett will be a cliff not in a lost season.

  34. No doubt M.B. is a loudmouthed mercurial whack job- but when viewed from both sides i would tend to tip it in Bennets’ favor.

    No way Green Bay gets money back- they would have to be incompetent to not see a pre- signing injury and to detect severity. Money back talk is more about saving face here.

    It is completely normal for players to try and manage their own surgery schedule, better to try and get healthy for next year, since the season was mostly gone. Contracts always favor teams- players only strength is to stay reasonably healthy- another vote for more reasonable,smaller, but guaranteed contracts.

    It is plausible, and most likely that Nelson and Rodgers get different treatment as to long term health than other players. Nelson’s recent injuries certainly would have been dealt with differently if Rodgers was down during them.

    Bennett stated in in his I-gram post that he only talked of retirement after things were going south with GB management to assure them he wasn’t looking to use an injury to make G.B. have to pay out the rest of his contract. Put into context that is much more reasonable retirement talk and would let GB off the hook financially.

    G.B. cut him- no reason for him not to go to a familiar winning team that wanted him for a half of a season. Most likely he’ll be managed sparingly, and more in blocking and as a “safety outlet” receiver.. A blocking tight end is much more important in N.E. than in G.B.’s system.

    I still don’t like the guy, but BOTH sides didn’t exactly handle it well, and all this talk of Ra- Ra College style- take one for the team talk is a bit naive in todays NFL where teams churn through dump players purely for business reasons – works both ways.

  35. Who would put a waiver claim for someone who refuses to play because of a “shoulder injury” (bennett) or literally walks out on the team..
    =====

    They’re made for eachother!

    Classy is as classy does.

  36. But Green Bay is STUPID for releasing him
    =====

    Wasted year, young roster. Don’t need a under-performing malcontent that doesn’t want to play. Smartest thing the Packers could have done.

    .. If Bennett had just shut his gob, this is a dead issue. He defamed a top level team employee and its going to land him in court, and are likely to put a big dent in his wallet.

    Hope it was worth it for him. Something tells me that won’t be the case.

  37. packers still win without him. good riddance. green bay is not the place for that type behavior. glad they cut him.

  38. So it started with the Packers doctor wanted him to play, but he talked to 3 other doctors and they all told him that he needs surgery. Now it’s he talked to 6 or 7 doctors and they all told him it could go either way? Well which is Bennett?

  39. So it started with the Packers doctor wanted him to play, but he talked to 3 other doctors and they all told him that he needs surgery.
    ======

    Bennett was never told by a Packers team doctor to play through the injury.

    Outright lie.

  40. Marty’s success is another evidence of the greatness of the Patriots system. It can virtually elevate players and put them in the best position for success. That’s why it is an exercise in futility trying to compare players in the Patriots system to others around the league or in history. It’s the SYSTEM.

  41. “All the Patriots did was claim a player they KNOW can help them win, provided he’s healthy enough to play. More power to them. Don’t pretend you wouldn’t want your team to do the same thing!”

    Yes but if their team does something within the rules that maybe fans of other teams don’t like, its just fine.

    If the Pats follow the rules and fans of other teams don’t like the result it is somehow “cheating” or Bill Belichick “conspired with Marty to make this happen”.

    Heck there were people posting last night that the Pats were “cheating” even though the main reason they got up so far so early in the game was the horrendous special teams play by the Donks. Ie; somehow Belichick and the boys “made the Broncos special teams play bad”. In their eyes it had nothing to do with the clearly terrible ST coach that Denver has, the poor preparation his playes had or the mistakes his players made, only that the Pats must have “cheated”

  42. Blount did the same thing to Pittsburgh. The cheatiots need to have the hammer laid down for all their blatant tampering. Strip all their draft picks for the next 3 years
    ————————-
    Like our great coach always says “we’ll see how it goes”. He’s a head case alright, but if anyone can manage him, Big Bill can. If he becomes more liability than asset, it’s easy to kick him out the door.

  43. ““I mean, [expletive]. At this point, it’s like I’m rubber and you’re glue. Anything you say bounces off me and sticks back to you . . ”

    Dude… what are you 6 years old!?!? If not, mind of a 6 yr old, for sure!

  44. I just went back to some of the October injury reports for the Packers. Why wasn’t Bennett listed?

    There is a reason guys like Trump and Jones rant and rave about suing and don’t sue. They don’t want to be deposed. A good litigator would carve up the Packers coaches, front office, and team doctor in videotaped depositions. I don’t think Bennett is worried about being deposed.

  45. joe6606 says:
    November 13, 2017 at 11:26 am
    Who would put a waiver claim for someone who refuses to play because of a “shoulder injury” (bennett) or literally walks out on the team (Blount). Both players actively engaged in horrifically disruptive behavior for the sole purpose of getting cut so they could join the team of their choosing. If you don’t think belicheat had no role in these behaviors you’re very naive
    —————————————————————-
    Talk about naive—- Bennett hits waiver wire. BB says to someone “look into it”.. They call MB’s agent and gets real scoop. MB is hurt but questionable as to whether he can continue to play. He’s on a bad team and likely retiring at the end of year. He figures he can get paid and repaired on GB’s dollar. They let him go so that plan is out the window. Pats pick him up.

  46. Hate Bennett as much as you want, he clearly makes it easy, but I have no doubt that GB tried to screw him up in order to recoup some of the signing bonus back. Think of this logically. Bennett could either have surgery and go on IR, or he could play it through and have surgery later. What would GB prefer? Bennett going to IR means they lose all the signing bonus if they cut him. The only way to recoup some money is he if retires or they cut him for basically fraud. For Bennett OTOH, it makes more sense to get surgery, go on IR, wait for GB to cut him and then go to a desk job.

    So, how far fetched is it for a team doctor toeing the team line and “pushing” (within ethical boundaries) the player towards playing? Honestly, I find it a bit fishy how quickly the team and players ran to help their doctor’s reputation with long testimonials. It’s apples to oranges but I’m sure many players would gladly vouch for Dr. Rydze too so that’s why I don’t really buy that much stock into GB’s assurances.

  47. I’ve no doubt that GB tried to screw him first. Think of this logically. Bennett could either have surgery and go on IR, or play through it and have surgery later. What would GB prefer? Bennett going to IR means they lose all the signing bonus if they cut him. The only way to recoup some money is he if retires or they cut him for basically fraud. For Bennett OTOH, it makes more sense to get surgery, wait for GB to cut him and then retire.

    So, how far fetched is it for a team doctor toeing the team line and “pushing” (within ethical boundaries) him towards playing? Honestly, I find it a bit fishy how quickly the team and players ran to help their doctor’s reputation with long testimonials.

  48. ibillwt says:
    November 13, 2017 at 1:15 pm

    Blount did the same thing to Pittsburgh. The cheatiots need to have the hammer laid down for all their blatant tampering. Strip all their draft picks for the next 3 years
    ————————————————————————————————————————-
    You know that they’d still win the SB even if that happened.

  49. So, how far fetched is it for a team doctor toeing the team line and “pushing” (within ethical boundaries) him towards playing? Honestly, I find it a bit fishy how quickly the team and players ran to help their doctor’s reputation with long testimonials.
    ======

    There is no way on earth Dr. McKenzie advised him to play.

    It sounds like he didn’t recommend surgery. That I would believe, and whats so terrible about that? Apparently, as per Bennett himself (if you believe a word he says) 3 other doctors have told him the same thing since leaving Green Bay.

  50. There is no way on earth Dr. McKenzie advised him to play.
    It sounds like he didn’t recommend surgery.

    So what did Dr. McKenzie advise or recommend Bennett to do then?

  51. So what did Dr. McKenzie advise or recommend Bennett to do then?
    =====

    If Bennett said he wanted surgery, the Packers wouldn’t have denied that.

    They are one of the most conservative medical staffs in football. As an example, neck injuries. They have cut about a dozen players due to neck problems, not even entertaining the idea of letting them rehab and return to the field. All-Pro’s even, Sterling Sharpe, Nick Collins, core guys on title-contending teams.

    They wouldn’t have refused surgery if that’s what Bennett wanted. No chance.

    I’ll continue to believe Dr. McKenzie acted ethically, and Bennett did not.

  52. But aarons444 buddy, doesn’t that enforce my point? If GB has a history of cutting injured players, how likely was it they’d cut Bennett too? Logically then, Bennett would prefer surgery and IR while GB would like to cut him before that if they wanted to recoup part of the signing bonus.

    GB cannot possibly deny that Bennett was hurt and that surgery was a viable option. The team doctor cannot force a player but he can make recommendations. But this doctor, by all accounts, never recommended one alternative over the other which validates Bennett’s claim “Not that he was trying to get me to play thru it but the way he was saying things.”

    So to recap, the doctor didn’t recommend surgery, the team that has a history of cutting injured players cut an injured player with a nonsensical “failure to disclose” designation and no one sees anything wrong there? Forget how you feel about Bennett for a moment.

  53. But aarons444 buddy, doesn’t that enforce my point? If GB has a history of cutting injured players, how likely was it they’d cut Bennett too? Logically then, Bennett would prefer surgery and IR while GB would like to cut him before that if they wanted to recoup part of the signing bonus.
    =====

    How do you figure?

    Sharpe, Collins, Finley, and the guys you haven’t heard of all wanted to play. Finley talked about a comeback earlier this year.

    The Packers acted in the best interests of everyone. They don’t want a player dying on being crippled on their field.

    .. as for Bennett, they wouldn’t have prevented the surgery. No way. No chance. Its not what Bennett wanted.

    If he wanted surgery, he’d be on IR right now. Period.

  54. You said. “They are one of the most conservative medical staffs in football.” That implies that even if it’s 50-50 they’d err on the side of caution and advise surgery. Right? But they didn’t.

    So their conservative doctor didn’t think this was a serious injury while the team is claiming that Bennett failed to disclose a serious injury.

    One of them has got to be wrong.

  55. You said. “They are one of the most conservative medical staffs in football.” That implies that even if it’s 50-50 they’d err on the side of caution and advise surgery. Right? But they didn’t.
    =====

    If you’re suggesting the medical staff acted unethically, I can’t say it any more definitively that I don’t believe that was the case.

    At the end of the day, treatment is up to the patient. If Bennett INSISTED on surgery, it would have been performed.

    3 other doctors, AS PER BENNETT HIMSELF, have suggested the same course of action as Dr McKenzie.

    Bennett is doing what is best for HIMSELF. But somehow, he’s a victim for it?? Anyone can see how transparent that is.

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