New England Patriots special teams standout Matthew Slater has reportedly agreed to a two-year contract extension to stay in Foxborough.
It’s hard to find another player who more embodies “The Patriot Way” than 34-year-old Matthew Slater.
Since arriving in the NFL as a fifth-round pick out of UCLA way back in 2008, Slater has become the consummate special teams ace at the professional football level. His effort on every kick and punt return is the stuff of legend, and he represents everything the New England Patriots value in an athlete and in a locker room leader.
And now, according to Bleacher Report’s Scott Polacek, the team can rest a little bit easier, as their unrestricted free agent appears to be headed back for his 13th NFL season.
Slater reportedly agreed to a two-year contract extension worth $5.2 million. It’s a similar deal to the one he signed following New England’s loss to Philadelphia in Super Bowl 52. And while nothing is guaranteed — especially not in the National Football League — it could conceivably carry Slater all the way to the end of his career.
While he hasn’t expressed any interest to this point in retiring from the game he loves, he’ll be 36 by the time he’s a free agent again. That’s young for most of us, but in football years? It’s practically extinct.
Slater had one of his best seasons yet in 2019. He blocked a punt against the Dallas Cowboys that was recovered for a touchdown in Week 12, and he also scored his first career touchdown on a blocked punt recovery back in Week 4 against the Buffalo Bills.
For his efforts, Slater was named to his eighth career Pro Bowl, breaking Steve Tasker’s old record of seven Pro Bowl nominations for a special teams player. Tasker, like Slater, also was a gunner for his team.