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Patriots’ Matthew Slater Retires: ‘God Used the Game of Football’

Photo from the Patriots’ Instagram

Patriots’ Matthew Slater Retires: ‘God Used the Game of Football’

By Movieguide® Contributor

Matthew Slater, a special teams player for the New England Patriots, just announced his retirement and thanked God for his time in the NFL.

He began his announcement with 2 Timothy 4:7, which reads, “I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith.”

“As a player, God used the game of football to instruct, discipline, encourage, and develop me as a person,” he began. “In 2008, I came here as a young man with hopes and dreams. In 2024, I can retire knowing this experience has exceeded any hope or dream I ever had.”

Slater’s career was marked with success. During his 16 years in the NFL, he was a 10-time Pro Bowl player and served as a team captain for 13 years.

Sports Spectrum reported, “With 10 appearances, Slater owns the record for most special teams Pro Bowl selections. He spent his entire career with the Patriots after being a fifth-round pick in 2008 out of UCLA, and was a team captain for 13 consecutive seasons. He is the son of Pro Football Hall of Famer Jackie Slater, and could very well end up in that same select company one day.”

For more inspiring sports stories, check out Sports Spectrum.

He thanked his family for their support throughout his career.

“To my mother and father, Annie and Jackie Slater: Thank you for committing to raise and support me the way you did,” Slater said. “Thank you for instilling in me the importance of faith in Christ and the importance of loving the people around you.”

Slater shared his gratitude for his wife, Shahrzad, and their children.

“Thank you for the sacrifice, grace, forgiveness and everything else you did to support my dream and our family,” he expressed. “To my children, Jeremiah, Hannah, Noah, and Micah: Thank you for inspiring daddy every day. The five of you have seen me at my very best and at my very worst. Through it all, your unconditional support has bolstered me. I love you all.”

He also praised God.

“Many of you know me to be a man of faith. I truly believe without the grace and mercy of the Lord Jesus, I would not be writing this,” Slater explained. “Lord, thank You for making a way when there seemed to be none. Thank You for preserving my body and my mind throughout the years. Thank You for all the wonderful people you sent into my life. Thank You for Your grace and mercy in my life. This is Your story, and I am thankful You chose me to be a part of it. I love You.”

Slater concluded his letter with Psalm 115:1, which says, “Not to us, O Lord, not to us, but to your name give glory, for the sake of your steadfast love and your faithfulness!”

Many of his former teammates shared their thoughts on his retirement. Quarterback Tom Brady posted, “A true champion. The best teammate and an even better man. Congratulations on the perfect career.”

“He is a role model, not just for young players, but for everyone,” Patriots CEO Robert Kraft said. “He is a man of integrity and high moral character who is led by his faith and committed to his family. There is no finer person than Matthew Slater.”

Now more than ever we’re bombarded by darkness in media, movies, and TV. Movieguide® has fought back for almost 40 years, working within Hollywood to propel uplifting and positive content. We’re proud to say we’ve collaborated with some of the top industry players to influence and redeem entertainment for Jesus. Still, the most influential person in Hollywood is you. The viewer.

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Now more than ever we’re bombarded by darkness in media, movies, and TV. Movieguide® has fought back for almost 40 years, working within Hollywood to propel uplifting and positive content. We’re proud to say we’ve collaborated with some of the top industry players to influence and redeem entertainment for Jesus. Still, the most influential person in Hollywood is you. The viewer.

What you listen to, watch, and read has power. Movieguide® wants to give you the resources to empower the good and the beautiful. But we can’t do it alone. We need your support.

You can make a difference with as little as $7. It takes only a moment. If you can, consider supporting our ministry with a monthly gift. Thank you.

Movieguide® is a 501c3 and all donations are tax deductible.


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