Bennett had been dealing with a shoulder injury for much of the season, although his recent hamstring injury that kept him out of Sunday's game against the Dolphins was also a major reason for the roster move, per Ian Rapoport of NFL Network.
He appeared in two games with the Patriots after being claimed through waivers from the Green Bay Packers.
Bennett had just 233 receiving yards in seven games with the Packers before questions arose about his shoulder injury. Rapoport reported the tight end suffered a torn rotator cuff that caused Green Bay to waive him before New England picked him up.
While he had signed a three-year deal prior to the 2017 season, the Packers said he "failed to disclose a medical condition," and several members of the organization ripped him for quitting on the team. Bennett responded by claiming the team doctor was pushing him to play.
He was healthy enough to play upon joining the Patriots, catching six passes for 53 yards in two games. However, he was held to just 24 total snaps during his time with New England, per Pro Football Reference.
Although the Patriots were likely hoping for a repeat of 2016, when Bennett tallied seven touchdowns and was the starting tight end in the Super Bowl, he will now undergo season-ending surgery. After considering retirement during the season, he might have played his last game.
Fortunately for New England, there is plenty of depth on the roster, with All-Pro Rob Gronkowski backed up by Dwayne Allen. Jacob Hollister should also get some playing time going forward.