The Patriots have been faced with some adversity off the field in the early part of the season.
Bill Belichick’s mother passed away two weeks ago and then last weekend, James White’s father was tragically killed in a car accident, which also left his mother in critical condition.
White missed his second game Sunday against the Raiders, but his teammates said afterwards they were playing for him in their 36-20 win.
Here’s what his teammates had to say.
Rex Burkhead: “For James, it really is tough. A lot of us, we think about him every single day and just his situation. He's an unbelievable person, player and leader of this team. And so the situation him and his family are going through, it's sad. We just try to go out there, we try to play for him and give it our all and try to focus on what we can. Of course, a bunch of guys have been reaching out to him, just hoping he's doing okay given his situation. But it's rough, it's tough. He's a brother to me, another running back on this team of course, so I really feel his pain in this whole situation. It is tough.”
Matthew Slater: “Yes, and I will echo what those guys said. We certainly played for James, and not just James, but his entire family. This has been a difficult week for all of us. Obviously, James has been thru so much this week and most of us can’t even begin to imagine what that must have been like for him and what it continues to be like. We want him to know that we love him and that he has our support. And certainly for us, as a team, it brings perspective beyond the game of football. Life is such a fragile thing and anything can happen in any point in time that could change your life, people you love, changes their lives. So we look forward to James getting back, so we can just support him, put our arms around him and let him know that we love him. We know what he has to do to be with his family. We will continue to pray for his mom, his brother and his entire family. We will be supporting him all year long.”
Sony Michel: “Throughout the week, especially with him missing practice, we're always thinking about him. Especially I can speak for myself, thinking about him a lot, just texting him, making sure he's good, keeping high spirits. The rest of the running backs did the same thing and we all kind of came together and played hard. That's what James White does. He doesn't complain, he goes to work every day. He's one of those guys – I'm sure you hear it all the time, but it's who he is.”
Julian Edelman: “I mean, we were [playing for him]. One of our brothers is hurt and it puts a lot of things in perspective. James White being the man that he is – an outstanding guy on the field, in the locker room, off the field – to go what he’s going through this last week, our thoughts and prayers have been with him. And it did give us motivation to go out there and play for him because you know for a fact the kind of guy James White is, if something like that happened to one of us, he would do the same thing. So, it’s been tough. It’s been a real tough situation and my heart and my prayers, my love and everything goes towards him and his family. So, he’s definitely a huge motivating factor for this week.”