Danny Amendola on 2018: 'I don't want to leave, but it's a business'

FOXBOROUGH, Mass. --Danny Amendola. Not done.

The 32-year-old New England Patriots wide receiver, who hinted in mid-December that he'd like to continue his playing career for a 10th season but wasn't quite ready to confirm it at the time, talked about playing again in 2018 during a moderated Q&A with students at Bryant University on Tuesday.

Amendola, whose clutch performances in the playoffs showed he still has plenty to offer, said his preference as an unrestricted free agent is to return to the Patriots.

"I'm a free agent this year, so let's say -- the unknown. We'll see what happens. I definitely want to be here. To tell you the truth, I don't want to leave. But it's a business. I've learned that," he said during the Q&A.

Amendola's talk at Bryant was focused on his experience with the Patriots and what it takes to play and win with character at the championship level, focusing on the themes of perseverance, grit, character and community service.

As for the Patriots' personnel at wide receiver, players currently under contract for 2018 include Brandin Cooks, Julian Edelman, Chris Hogan, Phillip Dorsett, Malcolm Mitchell, Kenny Britt and Bernard Reedy.

Even with so many receivers, it's hard to imagine the Patriots wouldn't have a spot for Amendola, who has accepted a reduced salary in each of the last three years to remain with the team. Amendola played 49.9 percent of the offensive snaps and finished with 61 catches for 659 yards and two touchdowns in the regular season, while adding 26 receptions for 348 yards and two touchdowns in the playoffs. He was also the team's primary punt returner in 2017.