Ex-Patriots LB, NFL Network analyst Willie McGinest apologizes after arrest, alleged assault

Former New England Patriots defensive star and current NFL Network analyst Willie McGinest apologized in a statement Friday after he was arrested following an alleged assault at a West Hollywood nightclub.

McGinest, 51, was arrested Monday following an incident on Dec. 9 and charged with felony assault with a deadly weapon.

"First and foremost, I want to offer my deepest apology for my lapse in judgment and behavior on December 9 at a restaurant in West Hollywood,” he said in a statement. “To my family, community, friends, and youth I mentor, please know I feel horrible for my actions and take full responsibility.

"To my colleagues at the NFL Network and those I work closely with as an advisor to professional and community-based organizations, please know I am embarrassed and regret what occurred.

"Most of all, I am disappointed in myself, as I know this is an isolated incident and is not reflective of my faith, role as a father, life's body of work, or the role model I've worked hard to become. It is personally devastating that decades of community service, youth engagement, mentoring, and professional development would become an afterthought in a single moment that should have never happened.

"This incident has prompted me to deep self-reflection — mind, soul, and spirit. I know that violence is never the answer to such situations, no matter how intense the provocation. Rest assured, I will take whatever steps necessary to restore the public trust, mend damaged relationships, and ensure this never happens again."

McGinest was arrested Monday after an incident that took place at Delilah in West Hollywood on Dec. 9. He was charged with assault with a deadly weapon and released on bond after turning himself in. Specifics of the incident aren’t clear, though a TMZ video allegedly showed McGinest exchanging words with a man before the incident started.

McGinest spent 15 seasons in the league, almost all of which were with the Patriots. He won three Super Bowls in New England, and then finished his career with three seasons with the Cleveland Browns before retiring in 2008. He had 804 total tackles and five interceptions throughout his career.

McGinest has worked as an analyst for ESPN and Fox Sports after retiring. He now works for the NFL Network, though he has been suspended.

Willie McGinest
Willie McGinest has been suspended from the NFL Network after his arrest earlier this week. (AP/Ron Schwane)