Branch returns to Patriots with family in mind


Branch returns to Patriots with family in mind

FOXBORO -- Deion Branch could have signed with another team. Interest was shown around the league, and he even entertained the idea of playing elsewhere after being released by the Patriots just days after the final preseason game.

And while maybe, just maybe, he had his own personal reasons for signing with another team, that wouldn't have been in his family's best interest.

So, nearly a month later and two games into the regular season, Branch re-signed with the Patriots on Tuesday, and he was back at Gillette Stadium on Wednesday.

"I'm very blessed to have my priorities in line, and I think that's the difference that may separate me from some younger guys," said Branch before Wednesday's practice.

Those priorities were his family.

"That's something that you know, hey, there's plenty of teams that are interested in you," said Branch. "But are you interested in going to play for those teams? Those are the things that I had to answer. That's the stuff that I was truly battling with. Am I ready to uproot my family and move from here to go and play for a that team?"

"Family is more important. My wife and my kids, school just started. There's a lot of stuff going on, a lot of things that factors into your decision. You've got to make sure you make the right decision for your family."

Branch has children in pre-kindergarten, first grade, and sixth grade. He made it clear that the biggest reason he re-signed with the Patriots was because he didn't want to take his young children away from their friends, knowing how tough it would be on them at such an early age.

"It's mainly important for me to just understand my kids' feelings," said Branch. "To know that they're growing. It's hard to move your kids. When you're grown, we can adapt to a certain environment. But when your kids go to different schools and have to make new friends, that takes a little while. And I think I took that into consideration a lot, knowing my kids' feelings. They're very open-hearted kids, man. They love being around people. And the last thing I wanted to do was put them in an environment they didn't want to be in."