The secret life of the Patriots tight end

Patriots tight end Aaron Hernandez  (Photo: Patriots)

Patriots tight end Aaron Hernandez
(Photo: Patriots)

Aaron Hernandez. We hardly knew you. Or so it seems.

We thought we knew you. By all accounts, you seemed like a good guy who suffered a traumatic loss at a young age. Losing a father as a teenager can throw anyone off track. At least for a while.

You needed a male presence in your life and you found it. In your friends. Only they were the wrong friends for someone with your future.

Still, your star shined brightly in high school and college. You entered the NFL draft as one of the most talented players at your position. But suddenly, your draft stock fell. There was talk of a failed drug test.

Despite the red flag, the New England Patriots signed you in the fourth round of the 2010 draft. You were in the NFL. This was your chance. No matter what happened growing up, you could write your own future from here. And you would.

For three seasons, you did everything the team asked of you. In August of 2012, it all paid off. The Patriots presented you with a generous five-year extension. It was the contract that would set you up for life.

By the following June, you found yourself at the center of a murder investigation. At first, we thought it wasn’t possible. Surely your name would be cleared.

But there was more. There were other incidents. Incidents that went back to college. And incidents we knew nothing about. Until now.

There’s still a lot we don’t know. Expect for this…

We thought we knew you.

But in the end, we didn’t know you at all.

XO

For an inside look at the Aaron Hernandez investigation, listen to my podcast.

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