Former New Orleans Saints wide receiver David Patten lost his life at 47, ESPN reported Friday. Local reports say he was involved in a motorcycle accident Thursday evening. A three-time Super Bowl champion with the New England Patriots, Patten retired from the NFL in 2010 and finished his degree at Western Carolina, where he had been working as an assistant football coach.
Patten made the leap to the NFL after initially joining the old Arena Football League’s Albany Firebirds, contributing to a number of teams including the Cleveland Browns, the Patriots, the Washington Football Team, and the Saints. In 147 career games, he caught 324 passes for 4,715 receiving yards while scoring 24 touchdowns. But his first real break came on special teams, where he fielded 111 kickoffs for 2,273 return yards and one touchdown.
In his two-year stint with New Orleans, Patten played well as the No. 2 receiver to Marques Colston, totaling 65 receptions for 954 yards and four touchdowns in 21 games. Injuries slowed him down, though, and eventually led to his retirement a few years later. But his contributions to the early-days Sean Payton offense helped lay the groundwork for lasting success.
It’s always tough to see someone pass away so young. May he rest in peace and his memory be a blessing.
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