Ben Watson, now a free agent, reportedly wants to keep playing

Finalist Benjamin Watson of the New Orleans Saints speaks during the 2015 Walter Payton Man of the Year Finalist press conference prior to Super Bowl 50 at the Moscone Center West on February 5, 2016 in San Francisco, California. (Photo by Mike Lawrie/Getty Images)
Finalist Benjamin Watson of the New Orleans Saints speaks during the 2015 Walter Payton Man of the Year Finalist press conference prior to Super Bowl 50 at the Moscone Center West on February 5, 2016 in San Francisco, California. (Photo by Mike Lawrie/Getty Images)

Ben Watson was not activated by the Patriots at 4 p.m. on Monday, making him a free agent, but the 38-year-old has no plans to retire, according to the NFL Network's Ian Rapoport.

Signed by the Patriots, Watson's second tenure with the Patriots (and out of presumed retirement) began with a four-game suspension for an offseason violation of the league's performance-enhancing drug violation, then Watson was concussed by Panthers safety Eric Reid in the preseason, and then the Patriots obviously chose not to activate him by Monday's deadline.

It's the kind of timeline that'd lead you to believe that Watson would indeed retire, but the decision was undoubtedly made by the Patriots, who saved just under $2 million in cap space by cutting ties with Watson.

There's also Watson's first tweet since leaving the Patriots, which indicated that while he tried his best to make the Patriots, it was Bill Belichick's decision not to cut a player from the 53-man roster to bring Watson into the fold.

With Watson cut, the Patriots will roll with a tight end group featuring Ryan Izzo and Matt LaCosse.