Recently, the New England Patriots have been pictured as a “fear-based” organization by one member of the Philadelphia Eagles. According to Eagles offensive lineman Lane Johnson, the “Patriots Way” is run by fear and it’s never fun to play football in New England. Johnson said that while the Patriots are winning, players are not having fun during their stint in Foxborough. Several players came to the Patriots’ defense, including retired linebacker Tedy Bruschi, who said that Johnson didn’t know what he was talking about. According to Bruschi, he had a lot of fun during his stint with the Patriots from 1996 to 2008.

During that span, Bruschi won three Super Bowls and earned one Pro Bowl appearance in 2004.

Solder grateful for his stint with Patriots

Recently, offensive tackle Nate Solder spoke about his experience with the Patriots, where he served as Tom Brady’s blindside protector since 2012. The Patriots wanted to keep Solder during free agency, but they failed to do so due to salary cap limitations. Solder went on to sign a massive four-year, $62 million deal with the New York Giants. In a Players Tribune article, Solder discussed his stint with the Patriots, calling it a “tough and businesslike environment.” Solder added that everything in New England is predicated on performance. Despite these issues, Solder never had any complaints during his time in New England, calling it an “incredible place to play.” While the environment could be tough sometimes, Solder said he’s grateful for the years he spent with the Patriots.

Solder said the Patriots have set a standard and established a winning culture that he will forever cherish.

Patriots allowed Solder to focus on sick son

Solder was particularly thankful to the Patriots when they allowed him to focus on his son, Hudson, who was diagnosed with cancer when he was just three months old in 2015.

Solder said head coach Bill Belichick and offensive coordinator Josh McDaniels helped him and his family during that tough stretch in their lives. Solder said Belichick allowed him to skip practice and team meetings to focus on his son while McDaniels told him that his son is more important than football. “They treated me like a human being instead of a football player or a left tackle,” Solder said.

Solder was also grateful to team owner Robert Kraft for his kindness and generosity during Hudson’s path to recovery. According to Solder, Kraft put him and his family in a hotel near a children’s hospital during a snowstorm so they would not miss his son’s chemo appointment.