When news came this morning that a Patriots player would be announcing his retirement, most thought it would be linebacker Derrick Burgess, who after not showing up for camp we learned was contemplating hanging up his cleats.


Patten helped the Patriots win three championships (Photo: Icon/SMI)

Instead it was wide receiver David Patten who is apparently calling it a career, and announced his retirement this morning.  The 35-year-old had signed with New England earlier this year after sitting out football in 2009 and was thought that he would be a good fit and mentor to some of the younger draft picks the team had.  However, he may have simply gotten out there and realized that there’s a faster and younger group he was competing against, and felt that it was time to move on.

Belichick has fond memories of Patten, telling reporters during this morning’s press conference, “We have a lot of guys that work hard,” Belichick said. “David sets the pace as far as work ethic.”

Patten had some memorable moments in New England, including catching touchdown passes in the 2002 AFC Championship game along with another a couple weeks later when the team won their first Super Bowl.  He also became the first player since 1979 to run, throw, and catch a touchdown pass in a match-up against the Colts on October 21, 2001 when they surprised everyone by blowing out Indianapolis at the RCA Dome 38-17.

Patten was with the Patriots from 2001-2004 as part of three Super Bowl-winning teams.