They wanted Faulk to go out on top

INDIANAPOLIS -- In the aftermath of the 21-17 loss to the Giants in Super Bowl XLVI, cornerback Kyle Arrington expresed disappointment that the Patriots couldn't send running back Kevin Faulk out on top.

The assumption is that Faulk, the longest tenured Patriot (since 1999), will be retiring.

"I just feel real bad for guys like Kevin, trying to go [off] into the sunset," Arrington said.

Faulk was approached by a reporter after the game and politely said that it wasn't the right time to talk about his plans. He didn't play in Super Bowl XLVI and because of that, he said there wasn't much to say in the aftermath of the game.

Perhaps Faulk will shed light on his thinking later today at Gillette Stadium when coach Bill Belichick and players will be made available to media members at approximately 3:30 p.m. ET.

Faulk had a challenging season after he returned on a one-year contract. He opened on the physically unable to perform list, and when he was activated, he was thrown right into the mix by playing 39 of 58 snaps in an Oct. 30 loss to the Steelers.

He was inactive the next week -- suggesting that the workload might have been too much, too soon as he was coming back from a torn ACL -- and ended up appearing in five games the rest of the season while totaling 49 snaps.

As for the Patriots' big-picture look at running back, the top issue will be determining the status of unrestricted free agent running back BenJarvus Green-Ellis, who led the team with 667 yards on 181 carries (3.7 avg.) and 11 touchdowns during the regular season.

Danny Woodhead (2012), Steven Ridley (2014) and Shane Vereen (2014) are all under contract, so those are the known variables for next season at this time.