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.