ORIGINAL STORY: The Patriots have lost one of the founding fathers of their dynasty, as reports circulated Friday morning that former New England wide receiver David Patten has died at age 47.
Details surrounding Patten’s reported death weren’t immediately clear, but former Patriots teammates Richard Seymour, Joe Andruzzi, Damien Woody and Matt Chatham were among those who paid tribute via Twitter.
“heartbroken (broken heart emoji) great man of God? lost for words – David Patten? (praying hands emoji),” Seymour tweeted, while also sharing a photo of Patten’s touchdown catch in the Patriots’ Super Bowl XXXVI win over the then-St. Louis Rams.
Andruzzi shared the same photo and tweeted, “So sorry for the loss of a great friend and teammate. Prayers to his entire family. God bless (praying hands emoji and heart emoji).”
Woody shared a different photo of Patten in a Patriots uniform while tweeting, “Rest in Power to my former teammate, one of the best men I’ve ever known?.prayers to David Patten’s family (praying hands emoji) #Patriots.”
Patten spent four seasons with the Patriots from 2001 to 2004, winning three Super Bowl titles as New England formed its dynasty in the early days of the Tom Brady-Bill Belichick era.
He’s perhaps best remembered for his performance during New England’s 2001 playoff run. He had eight catches for 107 yards in the famous “Snow Bowl” divisional-round playoff game against the then-Oakland Raiders, caught the Patriots’ only offensive touchdown in the AFC Championship Game against the Pittsburgh Steelers and caught New England’s only offensive TD in Super Bowl XXXVI against the Rams.
Patten also played for the New York Giants, Cleveland Browns, New Orleans Saints and Washington throughout his 12-year NFL career, which spanned from 1997 to 2008.
UPDATE (Friday, 11:45 a.m. ET): Avery Wilks, a reporter for The Post and Courier in Charleston, S.C., has confirmed with the coroner’s office that Patten died in a motorcycle accident Thursday night.
UPDATE (Friday, 12:05 p.m. ET): Sam Gordon, Patten’s manager at G2 Sports Management and a close friend of the former Patriots wide receiver, confirmed Friday that Patten died Thursday night in a motorcycle accident.
“His legacy will live on,” Gordon told NESN.com. “People will remember him for the contributions to the berth of the Patriots dynasty, but he will be remembered as a man who always served and never left you hanging. His legacy is he was a man of God and the best of us.”
” … What I learned from David was to always be your authentic self, to always be respectful and treat people how you would want to be treated,” he added. “I always treat people with the same respect and integrity that David did.”