A new Boston Globe report sheds light on the erratic and sometimes disturbing behavior of late former New England Patriots tight end Aaron Hernandez.
The Globe spoke with former teammates while recounting a story between Tom Brady and Hernandez’s college teammate Tim Tebow over how difficult he was to deal with.
It’s part of the publication’s “Gladiator” series profiling the former tight end who killed himself in prison while serving time for the 2013 murder of Odin Lloyd.
Brandon Lloyd warned about Aaron Hernandez
Former New England wide receiver Brandon Lloyd told The Globe about a warning he received from receiver Wes Welker. Hernandez threatened to “f— up” Welker after he teased him about need help with film, according to the report.
“He is looking at me wide-eyed, and he says, ‘I just want to warn you that [Hernandez] is going to talk about being bathed by his mother,” Lloyd said of a story Welker told him. “He’s going to have his genitalia out in front of you while you’re sitting on your stool. He’s going to talk about gay sex. Just do your best to ignore it. Even walk away.”’
‘Everybody’ knew about Hernandez’s criminal connections
The Globe paints a picture of Hernandez as a disruptive force who sought constant attention in a Patriots locker room that accepted him because of its desire to win at all costs under head coach Bill Belichick.
Hernandez maintained relationships with criminal friends from his nearby hometown in Bristol, Connecticut. It was not a secret in the locker room, former linebacker Dane Fletcher told The Globe.
“I knew they were trouble,” Fletcher said. “Everybody kind of did.”
Hernandez a headache for Brady
It didn’t even matter if Hernandez caused problems for Brady.
Lloyd told The Globe about an incident involving New England’s five-time Super Bowl winning quarterback.
“[Hernandez] was out at the walkthrough in flip-flops trying to run around,” Lloyd said. “He was laughing. He was loud. And Tom keeps it serious in the walkthrough. And Tom says, ‘Shut the f— up. Get the f— out of here.”
Hernandez did not respond well to Brady’s demands.
“It was like he went from this child-like, laughing, disruptive behavior and he storms off in a fit of rage,” Lloyd said.
The report referenced 2011 audio after a Patriots game with the Denver Broncos in which Brady told Tebow that Hernandez and linebacker Brandon Spikes were “a lot to handle” after Tebow thanked Brady for looking after his former Florida teammates.
Hernandez reportedly looked up to team leaders
Despite the tension, Hernandez looked up to Brady, receiver Julian Edelman and offensive coordinator Josh McDaniels, according to the report, and wondered aloud about them coming to visit him in prison.
“They always say they love me,’’ Hernandez said in the recorded call. “I used to say, ‘If I was ever in jail, would you come visit me?’ They all said, ‘Yeah, this and that,’ but I knew those [expletive] wouldn’t.’’
Lloyd painted a picture of an erratic Hernandez who would shift gears from macho and angry to sensitive and insecure.
“There would be swings where he’d be the most hyper-masculine, aggressive individual in the room, where he’d be ready to fight somebody in fits of rage,” Lloyd said. “Or he’d be the most sensitive person in the room, talking about cuddling with his mother. Or he’d ask me, ‘Do you think I’m good enough to play?'”
The Globe noted that Hernandez suffered multiple brain injuries and went on to play the week after a concussion, his second documented brain injury.
“I just do what the coaches ask,” Hernandez said at the time.
After death, Hernandez was found to have suffered from severe CTE, a degenerative brain disease found in people who have suffered repetitive brain trauma.
Monday’s was Part 3 of a six-part series from the Globe that has previously reported on sexual and physical abuse that Hernandez suffered as a child.
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