Patriots Captain to Return After Mulling Retirement

New England Patriots

Getty New England Patriots captain Matthew Slater

Fans of the New England Patriots got some good news as it was announced that a key piece of the team would be returning for 2023.

The organization announced that special teams star Matthew Slater would be returning for his 16th season.

“It is a great honor and blessing to return to the Patriots for my 16th season,” Slater said. “I thank God for His continued grace and provision over my career. I look forward to continuing to play under the leadership of Coach Belichick. Thank you to the Kraft family and the entire Patriots organization for allowing me to continue to pursue my childhood dream. See you in the fall. God Bless.”

Patriots owner Robert Kraft was happy to hear that the captain wasn’t retiring.

“I couldn’t be happier to learn that Matthew Slater has decided to return for his 16th season with the New England Patriots,” said Kraft. “Matthew’s drive to be the best at what he does will one day earn him enshrinement into the Pro Football Hall of Fame. Yet, as stellar as his football career has been, he is an even better person. He is led by his faith and spirituality, dedicated to his family and committed to his craft. There is no better leader for our younger players to follow and no better ambassador for the Patriots organization. He is truly special, and I am grateful that his contributions to the team will continue.”

Matthew Slater Debated Coaching for the New England Patriots

At the beginning of February, Slater discussed that the decision to return or retire was one of the hardest choices he has ever made while appearing on “Tim Hatch Live.”

“It’s something that we’re still very much praying through,” Slater said. “I have to be honest, it’s one of the most difficult decisions of my life. You know you have a passion and a love for something, but things change in life. Things change, and it’s not just about what I want now. I have to consider what Shahrzad (Slater’s wife) wants, I have to consider what’s best for our children.

“I will always consider myself a New England Patriot,” he added. “So, if I can serve in the role of a coach, administrator on the staff, that’s something that I would welcome with open arms. We’ll see. There’s always change in football, so we’ll see what plays out.”

Devin McCourty has a Choice to Make

McCourty is in a similar position as Slater was. McCourty is a free agent who is near the end of his NFL career.

The Patriots veteran appeared on the “Peter King Podcast” and stated that he wouldn’t rush into a decision.

“I told myself during the year that once the season ended to not rush and really just give it some time,” McCourty said. “With the season ending, now I’m trying to test out that next phase and see what it’s like doing the TV stuff. I went down to New York and did CBS. I want to go to L.A. and do NFL Network just to kind of see how all of that feels and how it works. Then I’m just going to take time, go on vacation with my wife and kids, and just relax and try to see what’s next.

“I’m not 100% sure either way, but I know I want to take my time,” he added. “You do something for 13 years, I don’t want to rush to make a decision. I have time and I’m just trying to figure everything out.”

Read More
Comment Here
Notify of
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
Would love your thoughts, please comment.x