Kraft was on vacation in Europe and returned on Saturday. This was the first time he commented about the incident involving Hernandez and his arrest as a suspect for the murder of Odin Lloyd. While he couldn't get into specifics due to the fact that the investigation is ongoing, he made it clear that the Patriots never knew how bad Hernandez's off-the-field problems were although they knew he was immature.
In 2010, Hernandez, who was a troublemaker while at Florida, admitted to the Patriots that he used drugs but said if they drafted him, he would submit drug tests. That was enough for Kraft to give him another chance.
“Here’s a guy writing a letter, taking responsibility. The only thing I ever heard on Aaron Hernandez was he was very young, immature and potentially had problems presented in this letter. Never saw signs of anything else,” Kraft said.
Interestingly enough, the letter which the "guy" wrote had problems "presented" in it. Hmmm.
When it came to not seeing signs of anything else, the pronoun "I" takes a powder.
In fact, Hernandez even donated $50,000 to Kraft's foundation, the Myra Kraft Giving Back Fund, which he established in memory of his late wife, in 2012 after signing a five-year, $40 million contract.
“He wanted to be a role model for the Hispanic community. He said that when he signed his contract,” Kraft said. “He said, ‘You gave me a second chance,’ and I believed him.”
Note "role model" as grandstanding. Grandstanding is done for a reason. It is similar to the grandstanding or boasting we see in statement analysis in which we often conclude the very opposite.
Former New England Patriots tight end Aaron Hernandez enters a courtroom for a bail hearing.
Kraft went on to say that Hernandez did everything the Patriots asked for in practice and games, and that he never kept tabs of him off the field. However, he did admit the Patriots brass agreed they would cut him from the roster if he were arrested for having any involvement in Lloyd's murder.
“If any member of the New England Patriots organization is close enough to a murder investigation to actually get arrested – whether it be for obstruction of justice or the crime itself – it is too close to an unthinkable act for that person to be part of this organization going forward,” Kraft told the Globe.
Hernandez was cut hours after he was arrested on June 26. His jerseys were removed from the team store and fans who owned one were allowed to exchange it for another jersey at the team store this past weekend.