BOSTON (CBS) — Even if he never again made an appearance in Foxboro, Kevin Faulk would have his legendary status cemented within the Patriots organization.
Yet Faulk, a Patriot through and through who spent the entirety of his 13-year career in New England, further established his standing among fans last week, when he took the stage at the NFL Draft to announce the team’s pick while donning a Tom Brady jersey.
With fan voting still open for the Patriots Hall of Fame, Faulk figures to get a bump for sporting the No. 12 jersey at the draft. But he told NESN’s Nikki Reyes that the move had nothing to do with boosting his chances of getting voted into the team’s hall of fame.
“That wasn’t what that was for. That was for something more personal, more close to my heart than anything. So that has nothing to do with that at all,” Faulk told NESN.
As for the decision, Faulk seemed to be wearing the jersey solely in support of Brady, and not necessarily in protest of commissioner Roger Goodell or executive vice president Troy Vincent, who accompanied Faulk on stage.
“It was just to show the respect for being a teammate of his and understanding who he is not only to the New England Patriots but to the National Football League,” Faulk said. “Troy has a job to do, just like Roger Goodell has a job to do. Troy is a former player, so Troy also understands how we feel about certain things, too. So Troy didn’t really say anything, because he could have easily stopped me from walking out there.”
Faulk later referred to the ongoing DeflateGate saga as “ridiculous,” but didn’t attack the league or commissioner.
“Mr. Goodell and everybody else, they have a job to do. They have to try to defend the integrity of the game. And that’s their job,” Faulk said. “A lot of us aren’t agreeing with their opinions, but that’s what they have to do, and I’m glad I’m not in that situation.”
Faulk said he appreciated hearing support from his former head coach, Bill Belichick, and that Brady himself reached out with a word of thanks for the support.
“It’s bad. It’s tough. But knowing Tom, he knows how to deal with it,” Faulk said. “All those growing pains that we go through, it only makes us tougher and stronger later in life.”