Matthew Slater Wants to Finish Career in New England

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New England Patriots captain Matthew Slater is a free agent this offseason and wants to continue to play in the NFL.  The longtime Patriots special-teams captain, eight-time Pro Bowler wants to finish his career with the Patriots. 

Photo courtesy of bostonglobe.com

Slater, a leader in the locker room, would be a loss to the team and for head coach Bill Belichick who values special-teams drafted the Pro Bowler in the fifth round in the 2008 NFL Draft. 

Will Slater re-sign with the Patriots?  Slater, who is no stranger at being a free agent, would be signing his sixth contract with the Patriots this spring if he were to come back to Foxboro. 

Slater is coming off a two-year contract that he signed back in 2017.  During that time he was a free agent, the veteran met with the Pittsburgh Steelers.  He ultimately decided to stay in New England and he has been a part of three Super Bowl championships.

"It's hard for me to visualize myself playing anywhere else” said Slater.  "But that's not always my decision, so I think that's out of my control.  I've expressed publicly and privately to remain a Patriot for the entirety of my career and certainly I still feel that way.  So we'll see how it goes."

It is expected that the Patriots will be undergoing a roster turnover this offseason.  Belichick could look to move on from Slater if the price is too high.

The Patriots have some key players from their roster that are free agents this offseason.  Tom Brady, Devin McCourty, Kyle Van Noy, Jamie Collins, Nate Ebner and Joe Thuney are all able to leave New England in March.

Intercept Cancer with the Crucial Catch Collection at NFLShop.comPatriots Head Coach Belichick is so tight lipped with anything over on One Patriot Place that who the Patriots are even considering to bring back is a mystery to us all.  What is clear is some key leaders and veterans are able to leave and Belichick needs to place a value on that as well as how they’ll impact the Patriots on the field.

Slater wants to finish his career in New England.  The Patriots should bring back the veteran.

"I think I've expressed several times my desire to play the entirety of my career here," Slater told Howe. "When you play 12 years in one location, it's hard for you to imagine playing anywhere else.  I've certainly expressed that publicly.  I've expressed that privately.  But again, ultimately, sometimes that decision isn't always in your hands.  We'll see how things go moving forward."

Leadership is a valuable trait, and with the expected turnover in New England and a younger locker room, Slater should come back to New England.  The ball though is in Belichick’s court. 

Slater is coming off his eighth season as a Pro Bowler, most ever for a special teams player. “Matt’s a complete player, he does a great job in whatever role he has” said Belichick. 

If Slater decides that he wants to stay in New England and it's not as a player, he would be a great option for special teams coordinator now that Joe Judge has moved on to the Giants as their next head football coach.  All signs point to special teams assistant Cameron Achord as replacing Judge. 

Slater wants to play, but he definitely should be a future candidate for Belichick's coaching staff.

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Boston Sports Syndicate: Matthew Slater Wants to Finish Career in New England
Matthew Slater Wants to Finish Career in New England
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