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Patriots OLB Matthew Judon not looking to throw 'tantrums' upon arrival to mandatory minicamp

Matt Judon has shown up to the New England Patriots' offseason program, and he apparently isn't going anywhere.

Entering the final year of his contract and coming off a major injury, with the Patriots amid a full rebuild in the post-Bill Belichick era, Judon's future in Foxborough is ripe for speculation. But Judon told WZLX radio in Boston that he's not planning to stage a holdout -- or a "hold-in," as he did last year -- as a way of trying to get more money.

"Uh, right now, I'm just gonna get ready to play," Judon said on Tuesday morning. "And you know, you kind of don't -- you kind of keep throwing tantrums, tantrums, tantrums, and then you don't come out there and do what you're supposed to do? It kind of gets old real fast, you know."

Judon sat out the mandatory program last year and received a minor contract tweak a year ago. He's not planning a repeat performance. In fact, Judon appeared to be critical of his own approach in 2023.

"I ain't really trying to do that," he said. "I'm just trying to come out here and play football, get ready for this upcoming season, and put our defense and (ourselves) in a position where we can win the most games or be the most effective. So that's what I'm really on right now.

"I ain't worried about holding out, sitting out ... kind of protesting. ... Because that last year, that stuff was trash. I ain't really like that. Like, I'm a football player. I don't want to get into the agency side. So I'm gonna come out here and play some football."

Judon, who turns 32 in training camp, is coming off a season-ending torn biceps injury that limited him to four games last season. But he had four sacks, five tackles for loss and a safety in those four games and has 32 sacks in his 38 regular-season games and might have something left in the tank. Judon said in May he will be “out for a vendetta” this season and has plenty left he wants to accomplish.

At this stage of his career, Judon added on Tuesday that he's willing to bet on himself. That's why he reported and is back at work. Judon also hinted that another financial adjustment could be in the offing.

"Bro, I'm in the building right now," Judon said. "We ain't far apart, you feel me. You've seen me with my helmet and jersey on (Monday). I'm not mad. …

"So I'm trying to play football. I want to play football. That's what I've been blessed to do. I've been blessed to be really good at it. And so playing football is kind of what I really want to do. The money will come. It'll come if I'm good enough, right? If they value what I do."

Judon sounded like a man Tuesday who was thinking about his legacy and how he might be remembered down the road.

"I got goals," he said. "I got goals and aspirations I want to get done in my career, and just my legacy. So when I go back and tell my sons, you know, 'Your dad was kind of a baller,' it'll be true. It'll be true. I think my kids and stuff are gonna be set up for the rest of their life, how much I have already been paid. So I'm gonna be alright, whatever I get paid."

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