Since this was brought to my attention as a possibility shortly after the Super Bowl loss, and I sort of brushed if off as nonsense. Turns out this thing is getting more and more likely by the day.
According to Mike Reiss of ESPN Boston, New England Patriots left tackle Matt Light is expected to retire from the team and NFL after 11 seasons. More from Reiss:
If Patriots offensive tackle Matt Light retires, as expected, it won't be because he can't play any more. The 2011 season was one of his best. More than anything, I think it would be because he's always been about more than football, appreciates the run he's had, and would like the idea of walking away when he still can. (ESPN)
I've always sort of gotten this sort of vibe from the long time Patriot. Not only did the news of him partying after the Super Bowl loss add to it, but to me, he's always been that sort of player in my eyes. He's 33, and has certainly paid his due to this league. He's an all-pro offensive lineman who's been to three pro bowls and has been the anchor to what's been a phenomenal pass protection group for Tom Brady.
If Light does retire, his loss will be felt around the team, but it's certainly not the end of the world. The team seemed to plan for this day last season, as they drafted left tackle Nate Solder with their first round choice last season. They could also simply shift Sebastian Vollmer from the right to the left tackle position and have Solder play on the right.
While it's shocking news for those outside the organization, the Patriots planned for this day last year and are well prepared for Matt Light to walk into the sunset with three Super Bowl rings.