Slater among Brandt's 'unsung heroes'

Longtime NFL personnel man Gil Brandt, now an analyst for NFL.com, recently dug in to the NFL specials teams landscape and highlighted his top players in three categories: four-core players, long snappers, and kick-blockers.

Patriots wide receiver standout Matthew Slater was one of three players mentioned by Brandt under the four-core category, which refers to those who play on the kickoff, kickoff return, punt and punt return units.

Slater, who has played an integral role in the Patriots special teams units in recent seasons and served as a captain in 2011, was re-signed to a three-year contract this offseason. Although the Patriots have a massive haul of receivers competing to stay on the active roster, Slater’s special teams merits project to keep him on the team.

Current Oakland Raiders long snapper Jon Condo, who briefly spent time with the Patriots in 2006, checked in as Brandt’s top snapper.

To see the full list, click HERE.