Now as a New England Patriot in the twilight of his career, Torry Holt wants to do everything he can to win his second Super Bowl and help bring the Patriots their fourth.
And while he’s at it, the 12-year veteran is also focused in on being a mentor to second-year receivers Julian Edelman and Brandon Tate, who have been soaking up the knowledge Holt — credited with assisting Mike Sims-Walker’s development in Jacksonville — has dropped on them since arriving in New England as a free agent this offseason.
“I talk to them a lot about being consistent, day in and day out,” Holt told the Boston Herald. “If you want to have a long career in the National Football League, you have to be consistent. You have to be focused. You have to have passion about what you’re doing.”
In Holt’s case, to show Edelman and Tate the passion he’s displayed during his career, all he’s got to do is show the young guys his left hand and the funky, deformed middle finger he’s been hauling in touchdowns with, and tell the story behind it.
Notes Herald writer Karen Guregian:
It’s a lesson to behold.
“It’s a part of me,” Holt said proudly of the warped finger. “It’s a symbol of my work.”
The finger has been dislocated countless times. Holt never opted for surgery, shoving the digit back into place more times than he cares to remember. But that’s what tough-guy football players do with mangled fingers. They deal with it no matter how painful or grotesque.
“I’m representing the old school players,” Holt said, “the Deacon Jones’, the Merlin Olsens’, because old school players played with these.”
Edelman and Tate may not follow suit in that particular way. But they sure have an opportunity to learn a lot from one of the NFL’s most dedicated, crafty receivers.