Former Super Bowl Champ Patten dies in motorcycle accident | Sports news


COLUMBIA, SC (AP) – Former NFL recipient and three-time Super Bowl champion David Patten Jr., who caught Tom Brady’s first touchdown pass after the season to help the Patriots win their first title, died in a motorcycle accident .

Richland County’s medical examiner Naida Rutherford said in a statement that Patten was killed in a crash outside of Columbia, South Carolina, Thursday night. The South Carolina Highway Patrol announced that two other vehicles were involved in the accident.

Patten played 12 seasons in the NFL after being signed to the New York Giants as a free agent in 1997. He spent three seasons in New York and also played for Cleveland, Washington and New Orleans.

But his biggest highlights came as a member of the Patriots, making two iconic catches to help New England take their first Super Bowl win of the 2001 season. During the Patriots’ 24-17 win over Pittsburgh in the AFC championship game, he pulled in an 11-yard TD from Drew Bledsoe. He followed suit with an 8 yard TD bouncing reception from Brady in the second quarter of the Super Bowl. It was New England’s only attacking TD in a 20-17 win over the St. Louis Rams.

Patten played for the Patriots from 2001 to 2004 and was a member of the 2003 and 2004 championship teams. He appeared in 147 NFL career games, catching 324 passes for 4,715 yards and 24 touchdowns.

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In a statement, coach Bill Belichick named Patten “an essential person and player in the history of the Patriots”.

“It breaks my heart to hear of David’s tragic death at such a young age,” Belichick said. “I am grateful to have trained David. He’s an important person and player in the history of the Patriots, without whom we would not have become Super Bowl champions. “

Team owner Robert Kraft said he was “unhappy”.

“He was a devout Christian who after his football career followed his passion and started his own ministry,” said Kraft. In New England he will always be remembered as a three-time Super Bowl champion. “

Condolences also flowed from several former Patten teammates on social media.

“Rest in power for my former teammate, one of the best men I have ever known,” wrote Damien Woody, former Patriots attacking lineman.

Richard Seymour, who played alongside Patten in each of her three Super Bowl victories in New England, wrote on Twitter that he was “heartbroken”.

“Great man of God … speechless,” said Seymour.

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