GREEN BAY, Wis. — When veteran tight end Martellus Bennett signed a three-year, $21 million contract with the Green Bay Packers this spring, he never offered any hint that his stay would be much shorter.
But Bennett might be calling it quits after just one year in Green Bay.
Bennett, 30, posted an Instagram story on Saturday saying he is considering retirement after this season, his 10th in the NFL.
“After conversations with my family, I’m pretty sure these next eight games will be the conclusion of my NFL career,” Bennett wrote. “To everyone that has poured themselves and time into my life and career. These next games are for you. Thank you.”
A Packers source confirmed Saturday that the team is aware of Bennett’s possible retirement after the season. Green Bay, which is on a bye this week, has nine games to go in the regular season.
Even after he signed with the Packers, Bennett maintained his home in Long Grove, Illinois, a northern suburb. Bennett spoke frequently about the return trips he made there to see his wife and daughter.
“It’s only two-and-a-half hours from here, so it’s been a blessing,” Bennett said last spring during OTAs.
Bennett got off to a slow start this season and battled drops, but he has 24 catches (fourth-most on the team) for 233 yards without a touchdown.
Before Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers broke his collarbone, Rodgers said he needed to make sure he got Bennett more involved early in games. Earlier this month, Bennett said he wasn’t disappointed in his relatively limited production because he was still getting used to playing with Rodgers, and the Packers were winning. They were 4-1 at the time but have lost two straight since Rodgers went down.
“It’s a long season,” Bennett said earlier this month. “The season’s still getting started. For me, I left a couple of plays on the field here and there, but it’s just getting used to and getting acclimated to playing in a game-type situation with Aaron and the team and the flow of things. So just try to figure out that, try to get in a good rhythm. I haven’t really been able to get in a rhythm yet. But we’re just getting started, and we’re winning games. That’s all that really matters.
“It doesn’t matter if I have 10 catches or two catches. There’s a lot of stuff I’ll make an impact in the game with. It doesn’t matter if I’m getting the ball or not. If my impact on this week’s game is chipping a lot, I’m going to try to do the best job I can do chipping. If they need me to catch 10 balls, I’m going to try to go catch 10 balls. Every single week is different. I know a lot of the outside people look at statistics, but I just look at Ws.”
The Packers signed Bennett after they decided to let tight end Jared Cook leave in free agency. Cook then signed a two-year, $10.6 deal with the Raiders.