The Patriots returned to Massachusetts not as Super Bowl victors for the sixth time but as runners-up for the fifth. As they cleaned out their lockers and exited the facility for the finally time of the 2017-18 season, only one player spoke to the media.
Via NBC Sports Boston, it was defensive lineman Eric Lee. The rest of the players had nothing to say.
“I ain’t got nothing for you,” Bademosi said. “I don’t owe you guys sh-t.”
Two years ago, fans and reporters pounced on Panthers quarterback Cam Newton for making a quick exit from his press conference after a loss to the Broncos in Super Bowl 50. That happened only minutes after the loss; the Patriots players had a full day to process their disappointment before opting not to conclude the season with one last batch of comments for reporters.
Maybe they were hoping to avoid questions about the curious benching of cornerback Malcolm Butler. Maybe they were discouraged from talking. Maybe they still couldn’t process the fact that they’d lost a game most believed they’d win.
Regardless, there was — and likely will be — no further explanation from Patriots players regarding the last game of a season that nearly ended in yet another Super Bowl win.