The New Orleans Saints finished last season with a 13-3 record and one playoff victory before being bumped out in the NFC Championship Game. Tight end Benjamin Watson knew that he was going to retire at the end of the season and he was hoping to finish things out with a Super Bowl victory, but it wasn’t meant to be. Now, just four months after retiring, Watson may end up taking another shot at a second championship ring.
ESPN‘s Adam Schefter reported on Saturday evening that Watson may end up coming out of retirement for “the right situation.” The All-Pro tight end is expecting twins next week with his wife and that is what he’s focused on at this time, but there is still a good bit of time before training camp begins for the NFL.
It appears as if Watson has never actually filed the retirement paperwork with the NFL as he’s not mentioned as being officially retired. Schefter even comments that Watson “intended to retire” after last season, but he’s now considering a return.
Benjamin Watson is an unrestricted free agent as last year he signed a one-year deal with the New Orleans Saints. The Saints had looked at bringing him back for the 2019 season until he said in December that he had plans to retire and focus more on staying healthy and being with his family.
Former Saints’ TE Benjamin Watson, who intended to retire after last season, is now considering a return to the NFL, according to sources. Watson is currently focused on welcoming twins next week. But after their arrival, he may be open to coming back to the right situation.— Adam Schefter (@AdamSchefter) April 20, 2019
Benjamin Watson has played 15 NFL seasons with four different teams and played for New Orleans twice. He had an incredible on-field relationship with Drew Brees and was always a true locker room leader for the Saints.
While it wouldn’t have been a bad idea for Watson to return to the Saints if he changed his mind about retirement, that is highly unlikely now. The Saints ended up signing coveted free agent tight end Jared Cook away from the Oakland Raiders in one of the prize signings by any team during this offseason.
In his reported final season in the NFL, Watson ended up with 400 yards on 35 receptions with two touchdowns. He’s a longtime veteran who would be a welcome addition to any team in the NFL, and even if not with the Saints, Watson could still end up back with one of his former teams.
Another team that was chasing Jared Cook in free agency was the New England Patriots, but they lost out to the Saints. With the retirement of Rob Gronkowski, the Pats would most certainly be interested in Benjamin Watson if he truly does decide against retiring from the NFL as he planned on doing back in December.