After announcing his retirement from the NFL last week, the Patriots honored James White with a retirement ceremony on Tuesday.
A few hours after their first joint practice with the Panthers concluded, the Patriots held a special ceremony for recently retired James White.
Several players were in attendance to celebrate White’s success and career, and much of the coaching staff were present as well.
Mr. Kraft would both speak during the event, expressing heartfelt words about how much White meant not only to the team but to them as well.
Both would reiterate the words many Patriots players said when speaking to the media shortly after White made the announcement, with a lot of focus on how wonderful and genuine of a person he has always been.
"“Through all the success he’s had he’s remained very humble and kind. His strength of character we know, he was a great ambassador on the field and off it too.”"
A video tribute highlighting his career would then be played, including his most famous performance from Super Bowl LI.
Belichick would take the stage next, and would not fall short on words to say about the former fourth-round pick.
"“It’s just been a great honor for me to have you on our team, to have your leadership. You’re a role model for all of us, not just the other players but honestly for the coaches. Your work ethic, toughness, commitment to the team are something for all of us to emulate and strive to match.“I just want to wish you the very, very best going forward. You had a tremendous career. I’m very proud to have coached you, very proud of the achievements and accomplishments you’ve made for the organization, and for what you personally have done for me. I sincerely mean that and we’ll miss you, but we’ll never forget the contributions and the standard that you set for us. That will live on and those banners that hang up there wouldn’t be hanging there without you. So I appreciate all you’ve done for me, the organization and for our football team.”"
White would step to the podium last, speaking candidly and from the heart about his life, career and family.
"“I’m extremely grateful to play for such a great organization, great owner, great coach for eight years. This is a special place, I can’t really put it into words. Too many people to thank. So many people that helped me make it to this point.”"
He would go on to express his gratitude for his teammates and describe how much they impacted his life on and off the field.
"“These guys shaped me for who I am. Whether I’ve known them one year, a few weeks, eight years, they all impacted me. … I’m extremely grateful for all of these guys.”"
When discussing his rehabilitation from last season’s injury leading to playing this year, White said he felt his body wasn’t back to 100% and he felt he wouldn’t have the ability to perform at a level he wanted.
White would later mention that his family intends to remain in Massachusetts and he plans to stop by Patriots practices from time to time. He also talked about what his future may hold, providing a few ideas that have come to mind.
If you missed it live, you can watch the event in full below: