FOXBORO -- Aaron Hernandez spoke to the media for the first time Thursday after the birth of his first child, a daughter named Avielle Janelle, on Tuesday.
"Definitely a life-changer," said Hernandez, who missed Tuesday's practice to be with his fiancee and their newborn. "Every time I come to the stadium I can't wait to go see her. She's a cutie. I can't wait to go back and basically look at myself."
For Hernandez, who turned 23 years old on Tuesday, the birth of his daughter was the ultimate birthday gift.
"It's crazy," he said. "The best birthday gift you could have having a daughter on your birthday. Especially daddy's little girl. It's an honor. I couldn't ask for my life to be better at this point. My life is pretty good. Thank God for that. It's a blessing. I still feel blessed daily."
Hernandez signed a deal that will keep him in New England through 2018 this summer and called then called it a life-changing moment. He knows the birth of his child will change him, too. And he believes it will be for the better.
"I'm going to look at things differently," Hernandez said. "I may be young and wild, but I'm not. I'm engaged now. I have a baby so it's just gonna make me think of life a lot differently, and doing things the right way because now another one's looking up to me. I just can't be young and reckless Aaron no more."
Hernandez was limited in practice on Wednesday and was back to work with his teammates in the Patriots practice bubble on Thursday. Asked if he would be ready for Sunday's game against the Bills, he was non-committal.
"Game-time," he said, implying that he would be a game-time decision. "That's it."