BOSTON (CBS) — Ty Law spent the first 10 of his 15 NFL seasons in a New England Patriots uniform, and never officially retired because it didn’t feel right that the last jersey he wore belonged to the Denver Broncos.
Law spent the final five years of his career splitting time with the New York Jets, Kansas City Chiefs and Denver Broncos following a career in New England that saw him win three Super Bowls, anchor a record-breaking defense and pick off countless quarterbacks.
But on Friday, Law will be back home in Foxboro and can finally say he hung them up as a member of the Patriots, as the four-time Pro Bowler will take his place in the Patriots Hall of Fame.
Fans voted Law into the team’s Hall of Fame last spring, choosing him ahead of former Pats head coach Bill Parcells and corner Raymond Clayborn, who set many of the records that Law would break during his New England career. Law will join Tedy Bruschi (2013), Troy Brown (2012) and Drew Bledsoe (2011) as the only players to be selected by the fans into the Patriots Hall of Fame in their first year of eligibility.
“It was very humbling and I’m very thankful for the fans for making this moment happen for me,” Law told WBZ-TV’s Levan Reid shortly after trying on his Hall of Fame jacket at Gillette Stadium on Monday. “They continue to support me on and off the field, so this is an incredible experience to be back home.
“Now I can finally rest because I wasn’t really at peace. My last jersey was a Denver Broncos jersey — nothing against that organization, but that wasn’t the way I wanted to go out,” said Law. “I never signed retirement papers because I wanted to do it as a New England Patriot.
“This has solidified the fact that I’m a Patriot for life,” Law said happily. “The last jersey that I’m donning is a Patriots red Hall of Fame jersey.”
Ty Law 1-on-1:
Jersey or not, many would have considered Law a Patriot for life regardless, due to his numerous accolades while wearing a New England uniform. He became the first Patriots player to lead the NFL in interceptions with nine picks in 1998, and tied Clayborn’s career franchise-record with 36 interceptions. Law also finished with the most interception-return yards in team history.
But Law seemed to save his best plays for the postseason.
In Super Bowl XXXVI, when the Patriots raised the Lombardi trophy as Super Bowl champs for the first time in franchise history, Law picked off a pass by Rams quarterback Kurt Warner and returned it 47 yards for the game’s first points. In the 2003 AFC Championship Game, Law intercepted Peyton Manning three times in the Patriots 24-14 victory over the Indianapolis Colts, en route to their third Super Bowl title in four years.
That game against Manning will go down as one of Law’s favorite moments during his storied NFL career.
“It was one of those games where you just felt good and nothing could go wrong. You very seldom get that feeling, but that was my day. There was nothing that Peyton or Marvin [Harrison] could have done that would have beaten me,” Law told Reid. “There was no way they were beating me, and fortunately for me they tried me and came at me. I will never forget that – it will always be a special moment in this place (Gillette) and that took us to the Super Bowl and we got another championship out of it. That will always be one of the more memorable moments of my career.”
Law’s induction ceremony, which is free and open to the public, will be held outside The Hall at Patriot Place beginning at 4:30 p.m. on Friday, just prior to the team’s annual in-stadium practice for season ticket members. In addition, and in a very fitting fashion, Law will be honored during a halftime ceremony at the Patriots Thursday night game on Oct. 16 against the New York Jets.
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