By Levan Reid, WBZ-TV SportsBy Levan Reid

BOSTON (CBS) – It’s been an interesting preseason for Matthew Slater.

The Patriots special teamer was on the bubble, but in the last game against the Giants, he gave his all and solidified his spot on this team.

Not only was he named as a member of the 53 man roster, but his teammates saw enough in him to name him one of the six team captains.

The stud college receiver will see most (if not all) of his action on special teams, but what he brings off the field can not be measured.

“It’s kind of a weird shift to go from that to now, being a captain,” Slater admitted. “But I’m just grateful for the opportunity, and just really appreciative that my teammates think of me that way.”

This is a job that Slater will not take lightly. It’s a job that, in many ways, he had been groomed for by his father: Hall of Fame offensive lineman Jackie Slater.

When Matthew got the news on Thursday, his first call was to his dad.

“I know he was a captain during his career,” said younger Slater. “I know he always encouraged me to be a leader, a man that stands out, a man of character. It just means a lot that the guys think that way of me.”

Patriots Blog: The New Guys

Slater has no receptions in his three years in New England, and has not returned a punt or kickoff since 2009. But he has put in a lot of work to become the special teams player that he is, and his teammates awarded him for it.

Tune in to the Patriots season opener at 7pm Monday night on 98.5 The Sports Hub with pregame coverage beginning at 4pm. After the game, tune in to the Postgame show on 98.5, and to Patriots Fifth Quarter on TV38.


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