Matthew Slater and Bill Belichick only needed a few minutes to agree he’s coming back

When the Patriots announced that the SWAT captain Matthew Slater will return for his 16th season, coach Bill Belichick said he’s thrilled. And that’s all Slater needs.

Slater, 37, told he had a very brief conversation with Belichick to confirm both sides still want him to play in New England.

“I ran into him outside the gym,” Slater said. “I went out, he came. I told him that I feel I wanted to come back and play. And it was very well received. He was thrilled that I felt this way.”

Slater said he would have listened if Belichick had told him it was time to retire.

“If Bill said, ‘Okay, it’s time,’ that would remove all doubts about the game,” Slater said. But he wanted me back. The conversation only lasted two minutes, maybe three minutes.”

Slater’s father, Hall of Famer forward Jackie Slater, played 20 seasons with the Rams, so 16 seasons on the same team isn’t that much.

“I am in a very unique position. My father has more experience with what I do than I do. The conversation between us was about what 16th grade in his career looked like for him. And how he felt physically,” Slater said.

Whether Slater can play as long as his father remains to be seen, but he’s not ready to leave just yet, and Belichick isn’t ready to lose his special team captain.


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