It was reported yesterday that the New England Patriots released veteran guard Brian Waters, and the release comes after a rather long saga that was on the extremely quiet end once the 2012 season was underway. Waters was considered an integral part of the Patriots offense, due to preseason concerns over Nate Solder‘s ability to improve in year two and concerns over Ryan Wendell being a first-year starter at center. Both Solder and Wendell had phenomenal years right off the bat, and backup guard (now with the Indianapolis Colts) Donald Thomas also had a great season.
But you can’t forget how great Waters was in 2011, and he was an integral part of the Patriots stalwart interior in the 2011 season. Waters has always been one of the best guards in the NFL when he played, and it is amazing to look at how he maintained play at an elite level. It seems like he was just as good in his prime years as he was at the age of 34 or 35.
Brian Waters should be ticketed for the Hall of Fame, even if Patriots fans aren’t exactly fond of how things went late last offseason.
The Patriots termination of Waters’s contract comes after the Pats tolled his deal on the reserve/DNP (“report” not “play”) list, which effectively kept Waters on the team. It seemed like Waters preferred to play for a team in the state of Texas, and he asked the Patriots for a raise in order to stay in New England. Unsurprisingly, the Pats rejected.
Things are locked up tight on Waters’s end, and all I can tell you guys is this. Please don’t hate on Waters, don’t send out inflammatory tweets about him, and show everyone that Patriots fans are indeed among the most classy out there. I do have a source (I almost never have sources, but I do have one in this case) close to Waters who told me what I will write in the final paragraph of this piece. Don’t make the same mistake that I once did earlier this season and speak ill of Waters, because we just don’t know what is going on. I mean, I would hate to have the same happen to me if I was in that position. Besides, Waters has had an amazing career thus far, and his class and ability throughout his career (another reason why to give him at least the benefit of the doubt) were top-notch.
What I can tell you is that it is true that Waters wanted to play closer to his family in Texas, and I can tell you that if Waters decides to keep playing, then he will try to play closer to his family. That’s what I know at this point, and that is certainly enough to give this guy the respect that he deserves. What we don’t know is whether or not he will hang up the spikes, and I’m sure he will make the best decision in that regard.
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