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Patriots share some tremendous Matthew Slater mic'd up footage after retirement announcement

Patriots fans remember Matthew Slater as a player who was all about community
Patriots fans remember Matthew Slater as a player who was all about community 02:28

BOSTON -- Matthew Slater didn't officially announce his retirement until this week. But his intentions to walk away from the game were known for quite a while, especially among those reporting to work at Gillette Stadium on a daily basis.

Fortunately, that situation allowed the team to properly capture what would be Slater's final NFL game after a 16-year career. While we all saw the hoodies honoring Slater worn during pregame, we're now privy to the conversations Slater had throughout the snowy afternoon in Foxboro.

That's because Slater was mic'd up for the game, and the Patriots shared a 7-minute video from that game after Slater announced his retirement.

From pregame embraces with his parents and team owner Robert Kraft, to Aaron Rodgers telling Slater he's a Hall of Famer, to in-game action, to opponents sharing their respect, the video culminates with Slater's emotional postgame speech in the locker room.

"Hey man, I appreciate everything you've done for the game, bro," Jets special teamer Justin Hardee told Slater during the game. "I promise you. Larry Izzo, when I was a rookie, an undrafted rookie, I was like, 'Hey man, I want to watch some film.' I was hurting, my rookie minicamp. He put on some Matthew Slater film from '14, '15, and it changed my life. I love you, bro."

For anyone that followed Slater's career, that mic'd up video provided a nice encapsulation of what he meant to the team and the organization. That game, though, came at the end of a disappointing 4-13 season. Another video captures Slater from the meatier times of the dynasty, featuring his postgame speeches made in much more celebratory locker rooms:

The team also shared a career retrospective:

And to cap it all off, the team's social media page invoked the emotional ending to "Toy Story 3" to offer one final "so long, partner" to the longtime special teams captain:

Slater was the final remaining member of the Patriots roster who had won three Super Bowls with the team, and his departure certainly represents the turning of a new leaf in team history. While his role in the locker room will be impossible to replicate, the team made sure to properly send him off into retirement.

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