Skip to content

Patriots teammates: Hernandez a loner

Getty Images

If anything has become obvious, it’s that very few people, if any, truly knew Aaron Hernandez.

The people who worked alongside him are not exempt from that, as several said he was as mysterious around the Patriots as he is to investigators now.

Jeff Howe of the Boston Herald spoke to a number of his former teammates, and while none gave their names, there was a general sense that Hernandez was an enigma to them.

“No one hung out with him,” one player said. “No one.”

Another added: “Out of 53 guys, surely there’s someone you could find to hang out with. Instead, he chose to revert to his network from his hometown.”

The reliance on old friends plays into the “influenced by a bad crowd” blanket that is being thrown over Hernandez by many at the moment. Of course, those in his old neighborhood could easily point to him as being the bad element that was dragging them down.

But while former Patriots teammate Deion Branch was the only teammate to refer to him as a “a great guy and a great friend,” others apparently didn’t share that opinion.

“I just think he fooled everyone,” a former teammate said.

That can’t be argued, even by those who claim with the benefit of hindsight they were scared away from him.

Permalink 89 Comments Feed for comments Latest Stories in: Aaron Hernandez case, New England Patriots, Rumor Mill, Top Stories
89 Responses to “Patriots teammates: Hernandez a loner”
  1. floratiotime says: Jul 3, 2013 11:12 AM

    What choice did he have? They could have been in rival gangs. No homey is taking that big a chance.

  2. kenbell97 says: Jul 3, 2013 11:14 AM

    On the bright side, that will make the transition into solitary confinement much easier..

    Don’t drop the soap Aaron!

  3. fballguy says: Jul 3, 2013 11:14 AM

    Wasted talent.

  4. vikingsrulez69 says: Jul 3, 2013 11:15 AM

    Well, kind of hard not to be a loner when you shoot everybody who will hang out with you…

  5. daburgher says: Jul 3, 2013 11:16 AM

    If he someone gets out of this, he’ll be dead or arrested again in no time.. hes clearly incapable of making good decisions

  6. fanofevilempire says: Jul 3, 2013 11:16 AM

    Just because he is a loner doesn’t mean it was obvious he could possibly be a murderer as well.
    This guy thought he was above the law and he
    would never be held accountable for shooting people, which is how he thought best to handle
    disagreements with others.

  7. wwwmattcom says: Jul 3, 2013 11:17 AM

    Without dough he is sure to have less friends.

  8. urfinished says: Jul 3, 2013 11:19 AM

    “Jeff Howe of the Boston Herald spoke to a number of his former teammates, and while none gave their name…”

    Smartest decision by the Patriots since Tony Eason was the QB.

  9. mrgroovesd says: Jul 3, 2013 11:20 AM

    I guess Hernandez didn’t quite get the concept of being apart of a team.

  10. blackshirtz says: Jul 3, 2013 11:22 AM

    He has the perfect situation right now then… being locked up in solitary confinement and all.

  11. samwade611 says: Jul 3, 2013 11:22 AM

    maybe you should watch replays of games after Hernandez scored touchdowns and watch all those guys celebrate with him then ask those same guys about him.

  12. cappa662 says: Jul 3, 2013 11:22 AM

    Easy to say when the guy as at rock bottom… but why weren’t you saying this when he was scoring touchdowns?

  13. rgtre10 says: Jul 3, 2013 11:22 AM

    The most refreshing thing about all this AH talk, all the other stories which weren’t stories have passed by the wayside and are no longer of interest. I will say I expect to see old Billy Bob Bellicek blow his lid at some point during camp as it’s truly going to be a circus up there with Brother Tim and now the AH fiasco going on…

  14. relggigeht says: Jul 3, 2013 11:23 AM

    I bet they were all in on Spy Gate together:)

  15. SilentMajority says: Jul 3, 2013 11:25 AM

    This, “Influenced by a bad crowd,” meme that is being bantered about is pure BS. You only have in your life what you want in your life. If he didn’t want those bad influences in his life they simply would not have been a part of his life. It’s not like any of his other friends lived in his multimillion dollar neighborhood.

  16. apkyletexas says: Jul 3, 2013 11:27 AM

    This is the Belichick spin-master at work. Bill has told all players to deny any knowledge whatsoever of Hernandez. Within a couple weeks, Bill hopes to have all traces of Hernandez scrubbed clean from all Pats record keeping.

    Soon, Goodell will begin the process of destroying all Hernandez videos. NFL reps are already being trained to respond to all questions with the following statement: “Hernandez who?? Never heard of him!”

  17. vikes69 says: Jul 3, 2013 11:28 AM

    i am amazed at how well the Pats hid these problems. it seemed like the kid had out grown his party days, and really matured, and now hes being investigated in 4 shootings…..

  18. jlambert58 says: Jul 3, 2013 11:28 AM

    After seeing that pic of Belichick kissing his elbow, they seemed kind of close.

  19. davekezer says: Jul 3, 2013 11:28 AM

    Makes you wonder if getting drafted by a team not so close to his hometown would have been a big benefit to him. Not making excuses for the guy, but he obviously needed to get away from those people.

  20. Iknoweverything says: Jul 3, 2013 11:28 AM

    Typical Patriot reaction.

    While he was on the team Hernandez was a great guy and everyone loves Hernandez……….after he is gone, NOW Hernandez was a loner, an enigma, and no one liked him.

    The Pats must have the most two-faced, hypocritical players on one team…..EVER.

    But just look at their “fanbase” as examples. 95% of the “fans”12 years ago were bashing on the team while they ran errands for their fat women in their overpriced Volvo, while feeding their face with Chowder. Now after a few illegitimate titles, obtained by cheating, these new “fans” adore this team and still are the most obnoxious creatures on the fake coast.. In 3 years when the team is back to being a perennial loser, all those “fans” will suddenly become Giants fans

  21. jg725 says: Jul 3, 2013 11:28 AM

    Put a name to your quotes or shut up – although everything points to him being a class-A dirtbag, if you’re going to speak – put your name on it

  22. malek773 says: Jul 3, 2013 11:29 AM

    I find it really hard to believe that he wasn’t friends with anyone from the team. Did he stay in the hotel by himself when they traveled to games? Did he really never go out to dinner or something with some of his teammates?

    To me this sounds more like what the Patriots orginization wants its players to say about AH. I bet you more than one guy in that locker room spent some QT with him. The orginization is just trying to distance itself from him as fast as possible.

  23. mksnpcola says: Jul 3, 2013 11:30 AM

    I bet his kindergarten report card said “Doesn’t play well with others”

  24. crush22 says: Jul 3, 2013 11:32 AM

    Replace the “N” with a “L” and they would be correct.

  25. GenXJay says: Jul 3, 2013 11:32 AM

    Shocking. Just now, people are starting to separating themselves from everything Hernandez.

  26. jimmyt says: Jul 3, 2013 11:33 AM

    Disband that sorry team.

  27. 13forgbp says: Jul 3, 2013 11:34 AM

    that must be part of the recipe to get a $40 mil contract from the Pats

  28. themackstrong says: Jul 3, 2013 11:34 AM

    Not taking any blame away from Hernedez but where were the Patriot leaders? You always here this Patriot Way but now that things unfolded they are quick to distance themselves.

  29. bennyb82 says: Jul 3, 2013 11:34 AM

    I have a feeling Deion Branch was exaggerating how good of a friend Hernandez was to him. They probably had a great time playing football together, but that is probably where it ended. Sounds like Hernandez was living a double life and it began taking its toll…and he started getting sloppy, maybe because a part of him wanted to be caught so the lies could end. He very well could be more at peace now in jail than he ever was on the outside.

  30. shots732000 says: Jul 3, 2013 11:34 AM

    A loner and a loser.

  31. rc33 says: Jul 3, 2013 11:34 AM

    Just like when Chris Herren was traded from the Nuggets to the Celtics, it’s one of those cases where “going home” was almost certainly the worst scenario for this guy.

  32. rr2000k says: Jul 3, 2013 11:34 AM

    Patriots teammates: Hernandez a loser

    I fixed it for ya!

  33. stlunatik says: Jul 3, 2013 11:35 AM

    He needs to do a sit down interview with Geraldo

  34. officialgame says: Jul 3, 2013 11:37 AM

    In this case being a loner is a good thing.

  35. maxkingpin says: Jul 3, 2013 11:37 AM

    Sounds a bit like “Big frog in the little pond” for AH. Most people didn’t even consider him the best TE (Gronk) on his team. But he was a really big deal with his cadre.

  36. zeedoubleyou says: Jul 3, 2013 11:39 AM

    “maybe you should watch replays of games after Hernandez scored touchdowns and watch all those guys celebrate with him then ask those same guys about him.”

    For anyone who played football, you run to the endzone and celebrate with whoever scores a touchdown. It doesn’t matter if he’s your best friend or an acquaintance, that’s part of being a team.

  37. mogogo1 says: Jul 3, 2013 11:47 AM

    Of course everybody was scared away. Have you checked out the guys he was hanging with? Players friends and family bump into each a lot. No way did nobody notice that Aaron’s guys were trouble.

    I’m sure they didn’t think he was a murderer personally, but the Pats’ brass must have just been waiting to find out somebody in his crew had been arrested. Betting the Tebow signing was to try and rein him in, but it came too late.

  38. patriotenvy says: Jul 3, 2013 11:48 AM

    Being in the military full time and dealing with a lot of new troops who came from troubled youth, the time we used to worry about was when they went home on leave for the first time and were around their old influences. So many that where doing good to that point would get into trouble or would get busted on a drug test afterwards.

    But those were kids right out of high school – not college.

  39. Walter Sobchak says: Jul 3, 2013 11:48 AM

    What?!?!?!?! Hernandez was a loner? The Pats should be fined for not doing their due diligence, and Kraft should have his toe nails removed with rusty pliers, and Belichick should be suspended for the season, blah blah blah… (Eye roll). There, just saved all the morons the trouble of having to try to type that out. Did I miss anything?

  40. jm91rs says: Jul 3, 2013 11:52 AM

    Even former teammates won’t give their names? This guy has everyone scared!

  41. undeadjesus says: Jul 3, 2013 11:52 AM

    Just because someone is a loner doesn’t mean they have extreme anti-social tendencies. A vast majority of people called “loners” are just people who like peace and quiet away from other people.

    You never see this: “REPORT: Murder was a social, outgoing people person” because that’s boring and doesn’t get people talking. But if the guy kept a small circle of friends, well then he must be loner and let’s make that a big part of the whole story.

  42. loubearkane says: Jul 3, 2013 11:55 AM

    At age 16 his father dies , starts hanging out with wrong crowd(BLOODS) 17 he’s 6’4 230 that’s a big boy starts trying to prove he’s about that life. If the Gainesville attempted murder comes back on Hernandez you have a young adult with no direction other then the direction of his “gang” The adults in his life are kissing his a** because they want his to go to there school or get in his pockets knowing his potential. He is a SOCIOPATH!!!!!! Every one that has been in a supervisory role from 16-now has enabled him.

  43. umainebearman says: Jul 3, 2013 11:55 AM

    Hmmm Hernandez is being described almost the same way people described Jeffrey Dahmer and the uni bomber. Loner kept to himself, people seemed to like him.

  44. patriotinvasion says: Jul 3, 2013 12:01 PM

    Somehow the definition of “The Patriot Way” has been spun by the media to mean that they don’t employ trouble makers. Not sure where they got that from because “The Patriot Way” was really a off the cuff label created by Tedy Bruschi to describe the team’s “one game at a time” and “no one is bigger than the team” mentality. Do your research people.

  45. irishking says: Jul 3, 2013 12:08 PM

    The Pats have no choice but to distance themselves from Hernandez. “Who?” “Him” “Never heard of the guy.”

  46. ampats says: Jul 3, 2013 12:15 PM

    Gotta love some of these comments ,especially from someonewhoknowsnothing about the Patriots or their fans.

    Did anyone on this website forsee any type of this character for Hernandez? As someone who follows the Patriots closely for almost close to 40 years I might add, he was becoming a poster child nationally. Puma signed him to a huge endorsement as their company spokesman,along with muscle milk and others.

    I was shocked and still remain in shock that this is who he was on his dark side.

    Hate all you want, the Patriots as an organization did the right thing and I guarantee anyone that there will be no circus in Foxboro as long as Bill Belichick is concerned. Hernandez disappointed a lot of people.

  47. moxicity says: Jul 3, 2013 12:16 PM

    I wouldn’t admit to knowing him either…might find myself dead, in a rental car ditched off some road somewhere…coincidentally, of course…

  48. jbeagles23 says: Jul 3, 2013 12:17 PM

    Watch out San Fran. Nnamdi was considered a loner too

  49. mattcapelle says: Jul 3, 2013 12:18 PM

    If he’s smart, he will have his lawyer start laying the ground work and claim his behavior is due to “concussions” a-la Titus Young.

  50. raiderlyfe510 says: Jul 3, 2013 12:20 PM

    Offensively the Patriots are practically an all white team like the 80’s Celtics. I can see how he didnt fit in… and its not surprising that Deion Branch was the only one to refer to him as a friend.

  51. harrisonhits2 says: Jul 3, 2013 12:24 PM

    People do get away with living double lives you know.

    Look at Mike Vick and what he got away with for years that most people had no suspicion of at all.

    When I was younger I provided concert lighting systems to a club that had gay nights. On the gay nights there was a guy who was a transvestite and worked as a “waitress” there. During the day he was an attorney an no one in his office had the slightest idea about his fetish. He got off on the fact that no one in his regular life knew about his secret.

    Even had some of the Pats players been closer with him it is unlikely they would have figured out what Hernandez was hiding.

  52. thegreatgabbert says: Jul 3, 2013 12:25 PM

    The players are bitter because Hernandez wouldn’t let them be part of his circle. No matter how many tattoos they got to try to impress him.

  53. beerjunkie says: Jul 3, 2013 12:27 PM

    Headline should read: Hernandez, a waste of flesh; should take a seat in an electric chair Thursday. Let the fireworks begin.

  54. cmoney20 says: Jul 3, 2013 12:44 PM

    Funny how the Patriots released Brandon Lloyd because they didn’t like his “behavior”…..Karma

  55. CKL says: Jul 3, 2013 12:53 PM

    raiderlyfe510 says:
    Jul 3, 2013 12:20 PM
    Offensively the Patriots are practically an all white team like the 80′s Celtics. I can see how he didnt fit in… and its not surprising that Deion Branch was the only one to refer to him as a friend.
    Umm…what? Fells, Lloyd, Cannon, Vereen, Ridley, Bolden, Hoomanowanui, none of them are “white”. Deion is a sweet, gentle person who would find something good to say about Charles Manson.

    And yeah I wish none of them had commented at all if they weren’t going to put their names on it.

  56. The Prophet says: Jul 3, 2013 12:53 PM

    I would take teammate statements with a MAJOR grain of salt, as who the heck is going to admit to being anything more than a workmate of a possible serial killer. I wouldn’t be surprised to hear Patriots say, “Hernandez? Never heard of the guy, didn’t even realize he was on the team!”

  57. alleycatzz says: Jul 3, 2013 1:00 PM


    Sinking Ship…

  58. mattwalshvideo says: Jul 3, 2013 1:00 PM

    Alfonso Denard is a criminal loner, has he been cut yet?

    Oh of course not he can help on the field, the “real” Patriot way.

    Stay Classy NE

  59. staff2cj says: Jul 3, 2013 1:02 PM

    Real killahs move in silent and stay all by their lonely

  60. thestrategyexpert says: Jul 3, 2013 1:05 PM

    Branch implied he hung out with him. I think that lots of Pats probably hung out with him and they just don’t want to be connected to him or attached to his crimes. I have a hard time believing he was such an unknown ghost to everybody associated with the Pats, but that’s what they would have you believe now.

    I wish some reporter had interviewed the team before the arrest about what they thought of AH and who are his friends. That way they couldn’t duck out of the question with a false answer now. At least ask the Pats to clarify who is and who is not somebody that each of them would associate with so they don’t have any outs to act completely innocent and ignorant the next time something bad happens.

  61. thevikes99 says: Jul 3, 2013 1:05 PM

    You can take the kid out of the ghetto, but you can’t take the ghetto out of the kid. Wasted talent and wasted life!

    You can’t help those who don’t want to be helped.

  62. ninetysixer says: Jul 3, 2013 1:09 PM

    sorry, I call BS, what did they expect his teamates to say?

  63. tyvanharpen says: Jul 3, 2013 1:23 PM

    I love seeing big ego’s come crashing down. It’s even better when it’s a gang banger. If this lifestyle is so great and sexy then Aaron should be in heavenly bliss. This should be the pinnacle for him. I love looking at his face and waiting for him to melt down and start crying. Have to admit at this point though he has been stone cold. His Mom still thinks he’ll be founf innocent. That is the real funny part of all of this.

  64. 8ovie8 says: Jul 3, 2013 1:25 PM

    I mean look at that purple shirt, I bet he was banging with the 3rd Street Saints… probably talking with Julius or Johnny as we speak..

    I know but darn, when can you reference Saints Row on Profootball talk!!!

  65. jiggy3198 says: Jul 3, 2013 1:26 PM

    Look what happens to people who get close to him they end up dead or shot and left to die. Or mysteriously die in a car accident

  66. hehateme2 says: Jul 3, 2013 1:30 PM

    Betting the Tebow signing was to try and rein him in, but it came too late.?

    Really? Tebow? Why would you drag him through this murder spree?
    This has nothing to do with his signing IMO.

  67. tombradyswig says: Jul 3, 2013 1:36 PM

    The World: Hernandez a loser!

    throw away the key, this guy is as bad as jeff Dahmer!

  68. r81ders says: Jul 3, 2013 1:42 PM

    This team is a joke when he was scoring TD every one was on his nutz…now they claim he was a outcast WOW…Pats have not one a SB since spygate..they say my team is disfunctional check your self befor ya reck yourself Pats..bye the way we do get the last laugh.

  69. cubano76 says: Jul 3, 2013 2:01 PM

    @ jg725 says: Jul 3, 2013 11:28 AM

    Put a name to your quotes or shut up – although everything points to him being a class-A dirtbag, if you’re going to speak – put your name on it


    I’m pretty sure your real name is not jg725 is it?

  70. mrwalterisgod says: Jul 3, 2013 2:12 PM

    “Hello! Welcome to Taco Bell can I take your order?”

    AH: “Yea, can I get a couple burritos, no guacamole, some tacos and a large rootbeer”

    “Sir, we are all out of taco shells unfortunatel-”



  71. malvaren18 says: Jul 3, 2013 2:26 PM

    No Hernandez, No Welker I wonder how good is Brady going to be this year.

  72. packerbackernj says: Jul 3, 2013 2:40 PM

    Poor guy just wanted to be left alone. odin Lloyd wouldn’t stop bothering him. only nature to put two in his dome executioner style to get some peace and quiet.

  73. richndc says: Jul 3, 2013 2:41 PM

    They knew he was trouble when he refused the “eat a deuce from Tom Brady’s caboose” initiation to the team–what a loser!!

  74. richndc says: Jul 3, 2013 2:43 PM

    Just love that richndc guy!! He always makes the best comments!!!

  75. 52lightsxout52 says: Jul 3, 2013 2:46 PM

    Reading through all these comments, hasn’t anyone pointed out the obvious? The man is a psychopath. By all accounts he seems to fit the profile.

  76. iowahbr says: Jul 3, 2013 3:15 PM

    Assuming he is found guilty I feel confident that when he gets out in 2043 he will be a different person. We’ll just have to wait and see.

  77. ruthlssjag says: Jul 3, 2013 3:53 PM

    Am I considered a “friend” considering I “owned” Hernandez )literally)… on my fantasy team? I sure hope the FEDS/FBI don’t come knocking on my door. Ahh daaaam, I guess I’m focked either way. D’ooooh!!!

  78. lightcleric says: Jul 3, 2013 4:05 PM

    “none gave their names”

    I was going to criticize them for not putting their name on it.

    Then I realized they might end up in a car “accident” like his uncle’s son-in-law if they did.

  79. urmomsmyho says: Jul 3, 2013 4:07 PM

    Sorry but the Pats just can’t wash their hands of Hernandez. They had to have some idea he was a bad seed. This is an organization that goes to great lengths to gather information about players. In retrospect it now makes sense why Belichik picked up Ballard a year ago. He probably knew the clock was ticking on Hernandez’s destructive behavior.

  80. lanman11 says: Jul 3, 2013 6:26 PM

    Branch was just being Branch. He was being a good (former) teammate as usual, and being supportive of a teammate that was yet to be found guilty, and possibly just extending AH the privilege of having someone believe the best in him until proven otherwise. Nobody would want to be abandoned like this based solely on accusations. That would speak poorly on all of us. Of course this looks really really really bad for AH. But it is nice to see that someone had the grace to extend hope until hope was lost. After all, in some way, whatever happened to AH to make him this way, if he is guilty, is also a tragedy.

  81. raiderlyfe510 says: Jul 3, 2013 7:53 PM

    Yeah it’s a tragedy on all sides.

  82. laserrocketarm31 says: Jul 3, 2013 9:20 PM

    Right, he was “mysterious” because he did not hang out with anyone. Where do you pick up these “writers?” The local kindegarten?

  83. natijim235 says: Jul 3, 2013 10:46 PM

    all this but mike brown gets slammed because bengals shied away from him in the draft

  84. macker1283 says: Jul 3, 2013 11:46 PM

    People gotta get off this “he just couldn’t get away from his old friends” blah blah blah crap. The evidence says HE called his old friends, told them to come up to Mass to help him kill someone who HE wanted to kill. The other two guys didn’t even know Oden Lloyd. I know the media loves to frame stories, but this isn’t a “bad crowd dragging him down” story so get off it.

  85. craigmaitland says: Jul 4, 2013 12:03 AM

    “Classy” franchise and “classy” players. Isn’t the “patriot way” supposed to be one as a team? Isn’t Bellicheck the perfect coach for reclamation projects?… Pats have been a scumbag team for yrs. sad that it takes a murderer for some of the media to see it.

  86. themackstrong says: Jul 4, 2013 12:54 AM

    patriotinvasion says: Jul 3, 2013 12:01 PM

    Somehow the definition of “The Patriot Way” has been spun by the media to mean that they don’t employ trouble makers. Not sure where they got that from because “The Patriot Way” was really a off the cuff label created by Tedy Bruschi to describe the team’s “one game at a time” and “no one is bigger than the team” mentality. Do your research people.


    I have watched for years as Teddy Bruschi himself along with Rodney Harrison, Heath Evans, Willie McGinest and M. Lombardi any chance they gets talk the “Patriot Way” pointing to success and this high standard that is exclusive to New England. Belichick brought on Albert Haynesworth and Chad Johnson with that same naive thought and Pats fans where all on board until they didn’t produce. Now that the flaws of your team are on display for the world just like any other, you can’t claim “The Patriot Way” only means this….

  87. nananatman says: Jul 4, 2013 9:02 AM

    Influenced by a bad crowd is not a defense for 3 murders and shooting a man in the face.

  88. axespray says: Jul 4, 2013 2:44 PM

    So he was basically Dexter Morgan in the lockerroom or something.

  89. drognib says: Jul 5, 2013 6:41 AM


    Not making excuses for the guy, but he obviously needed to get away from those people.


    More to the point, they needed to get away from him.

Leave a Reply

You must be logged in to leave a comment. Not a member? Register now!