On Tuesday, Rolling Stone teased their upcoming article detailing Aaron Hernandez's troubles leading up to his alleged murder of Odin Lloyd.
After conducting interviews with family friends, high school teammates, and NFL sources, Rolling Stone unveiled a number of troubling issues that Hernandez was involved with.
They wrote, among other things, that "Hernandez was a heavy user of angel dust, and had become so paranoid over the last year that he carried a gun wherever he went."
"He surrounded himself with a cohort of gangsters, and cut himself off from his family and teammates."
The article also unveiled that Patriots head coach Bill Belichick was at his wits end with Hernandez due to his lack of dedication to the team by missing practices and doing "thug-life stunts".
On Wednesday, the article was released with even more details of those events and more.
For one, according to the article, Hernandez realized he was in over his head, and became paranoid of everyone around him. He flew to the NFL Combine this past February where Bill Belichick was, where he told him he felt his life was in danger. A source told Rolling Stone that Hernandez was worried "they were actually trying to kill him", with "they" being the thugs and gangsters he was involved with.
Hernandez then went to California to rehab his shoulder and get away from Connecticut, but according to the Rolling Stone's source, he didn't show up to meetings with his therapist, and stood up Tom Brady, who was running a camp for Patriots receivers.
Later, Hernandez and his fiance got into a dispute that led to a police response. When the news got back to Belichick, he became angry at Hernandez and that's when he threatened to trade or cut Hernandez at the end of the 2013 season if Hernandez didn't shape up.
That led to Hernandez's return back to Boston, where Belichick told him to rent a safe house away from his North Attleboro home for a while to lay low. The safe house later became known as the "flophouse" that Hernandez's troubled friend Ernest Wallace also lived in.
It's unclear how much of Hernandez's paranoia was justified, or due to his reportedly excessive use of angel dust.
According to Wikipedia, "Psychological effects of angel dust include severe changes in body image, loss of ego boundaries, paranoia and depersonalization. Hallucinations, euphoria, suicidal impulses and aggressive behavior are reported. The drug has been known to alter mood states in an unpredictable fashion, causing some individuals to become detached, and others to become animated. Intoxicated individuals may act in an unpredictable fashion, possibly driven by their delusions and hallucinations. PCP may induce feelings of strength, power, and invulnerability as well as a numbing effect on the mind."
So how did Hernandez slip under the Patriots' radar the way he did? According to Rolling Stone, it's partially due to a change in the Patriots security chief back in 2003. Former security chief, Frank Mendes, who served the team from 1990 to 2003, was a former state trooper and had many connections in the force still. When a Patriots player was somewhere he shouldn't be, or doing something he shouldn't, Mendes could rely on his friends in the police force to relay the information quickly and get it to Belichick.
But Mendes was replace by Mark Briggs in 2003, a "tech-smart Brit" according to Rolling Stone. Briggs managed security at Londond's Wembley Stadium, and therefore didn't have the local ties that Mendes had, which led to less tips on what players were up to.