The Death of Aaron Hernandez

Joe Finfrock, Sports Writer

Aaron Hernandez was a tight end for the New England Patriots. In 2015, Hernandez was convicted of first degree murder of Odin Lloyd, the boyfriend of his fiancee’s sister. Hernandez was sentenced to life in prison.

Hernandez was plagued with issues since the start of his career. While at the University of Florida, he failed a number of drug tests, a bar fight, and was rumored to have some sort of gang affiliation. Despite all of these red flags, Hernandez was selected with the fourteenth pick of the fourth round by the New England Patriots in 2010.

The Patriots claimed to have never heard of his troubles, but their track record of having players with issues like Hernandez’s may prove otherwise.

Despite being the second string tight end on the Patriots, Hernandez got a heavy workload. In three seasons, Hernandez had 175 receptions for 1,956 yards and 18 touchdowns. In each season, the Patriots made the playoffs.

On April 14, 2017, Aaron Hernandez was cleared of a double murder he was previously indicted on via appeal. Hernandez was still serving life for the murder of Odin Lloyd despite his victory in court. Hernandez was set in the midst of appealing his final murder charge when he committed suicide in his jail cell on April 19. Under Massachusetts law, when a defendant dies in the midst of an appeal, the charges must be dropped. Hernandez died a convicted murderer, but he left behind a clean slate.