And then there are seven.
Patriots wide receiver Marqise Lee intends to retire from the 2020 season, according to Jim McBride of the Globe de Boston.
According to Mike Reiss of ESPN.com, Lee’s decision stems from the fact that he first became a father in February.
Lee received a signing bonus of $ 137,500, along with a base salary of $ 910,000, when signing a one-year contract to join New England during the offseason. Typically, he will keep the signing bonus and his contract will run until 2021.
Considering he’s never played for the Patriots before and considering that Lee never realized the potential that made him the 39th pick in the 2014 Draft, this is not the type of defection. that will freak out Coach Bill Belichick (not that he does anyway). But the ongoing exodus has taken on an atmosphere of death by the thousand for the Patriots; As each subsequent player retires, others may decide to do the same.
“I think everyone has to make their own individual decisions about this,” Belichick told reporters on Friday regarding the possibility of further withdrawals. “They have to weigh their own situation. Each of us is unique and we all have different lives, situations, families, environments and so on. There are therefore no two identical situations. Everyone will have to make their own decision about this. My crystal ball is a little cloudy right now, so I have no idea what’s going to happen in that direction. I think everyone in the league, every team in the league, every player, every coach, everyone in the league is involved to some extent. So we’ll just have to see how it goes.
For the Patriots, this is proving a bit of a problem. But few coaches are better equipped to shrug their shoulders, move on to the next man, expect the same level of performance from the substitutes and pursue wins in what will be a season of chaos for everyone.