The former New England Patriots tight end, Aaron Hernandez, is dead of an apparent suicide. Hernandez took his own life while incarcerated in a Massachusetts prison where he was serving a life-sentence without parole for the murder of a man back in 2013. Hernandez was found hanging in his jail cell at about 3 a.m. this morning.

Hernandez, who was 27, wasn't pronounced dead until 4:07 a.m. when he was transported to UMass Memorial -- Health Alliance Hospital in Leominster, Massachusetts. He was incarcerated in the Souza Baranowski Correctional Center in Shirley, Massachusetts, according to ESPN.

Not on suicide watch

The former NFL player was housed in the general population area of the prison and he was assigned to a single cell. It appears Hernandez went through some trouble to take his own life. Prison officials said it appeared he tried to block the entrance to his cell by jamming up the door with various items so they didn't have easy access to him if by chance they found him before he died.

Used bed sheet

Hernandez took a bed sheet and tied it to the prison cell window and hanged himself with that sheet. This is a young man who once had such a promising future in the NFL, but he saw that implode after he was given a life sentence for a murder that occurred in 2013.

On Friday Hernandez was acquitted in a double slaying that prosecutors said occurred over a spilled drink in a bar back in 2012.

According to the Boston Globe this morning, the authorities are investigating Hernandez's death and they have notified his family.

General population

The former Patriots' player was in the general population unit known as Unit G-2 and not on suicide watch. Hernandez gave no indication that suicide was a possibility. If he had, there is a section within the prison where he would have been housed while on suicide watch, but again, there was no indication that Hernandez was suicidal.

Suicide note

Prison officials have not found "anything that resembles a suicide note" left behind in his cell. Hernandez was found guilty of killing Odin L. Lloyd back in 2013 in the town of North Attleborough, Massachusetts.This was a case that had many New England Patriots fans stunned at the time.

New England Patriots

Last week Hernandez stood trail and was acquitted in the murder of two men in Boston back in 2012.

Hernandez committed suicide on the same day that the New England Patriots are slated to visit the White House as a celebration of their Super Bowl win.

The team released a statement saying very little, other that they are aware of Hernandez's death. The statement, which was released by Patriots' spokesperson Stacey James, also said the New England team didn't expect to release any comments about his death today.