According to Karen Guregian of the Boston Herald, Wilfork was so disillusioned about his situation that he not only asked for his release, but cleaned out his locker.
Wilfork was bothered by the fact the Patriots asked to restructure his deal, rather than pay the 31-year-old $7.5 million coming off a torn Achilles.
Citing two sources, Guregian reports that Wilfork ripped his nameplate off the locker as well.
Patriots owner Robert Kraft struck a more diplomatic tone Monday, telling our Mike Florio (in an interview you can see on Pro Football Talk on NBCSN at 5:30 p.m. ET)
“Well you know in the 20 years that I’ve owned the team having Vince is one of the more special people both off and on the field,” Kraft said. “He and Bianca and the way he conducts himself. You know we’ve had in my recent past four players that have been career Patriots and Matt Light, Troy Brown, Kevin Faulk and Tedy Bruschi of course. And there’s ups and downs and are they going to stay, aren’t they going to stay.
“It’s my hope and desire that Vince is with us next year. I think he’d like to be and we’d like to have him and try to do everything we can to close the order.”
It’s going to take more than diplomacy to fix this one, as finding a middle ground on money for a longtime Patriots fixture is going to matter.