Faulk 'gained another family' in Pats fans

FOXBOROUGH, Mass. -- Former New England Patriots running back Kevin Faulk, who retired last month, was honored at halftime of Sunday's game against the Buffalo Bills.

Faulk was introduced by Patriots owner Robert Kraft. The following is a transcript of Faulk's remarks to the fans:

"This has been amazing. Ever since I announced my retirement, I didn't know how I was going to accept it. But you, you the fans. I didn't really know how I was going to accept not playing football anymore, but you are the ones who got me through it. From the Twitter messages, personal messages you sent me and let me know how I played the game of football is how it is really meant to be played, I want to thank you once again for all those kind words that helped me.

"It helped me get through the times, when I made a decision and I knew that it was it for me. It helped me get through those times. It helped me think about those memories, those championships, the guys that we played with, Coach Belichick, Mr. Kraft, Mrs. Kraft, who we dearly miss. It helps me remember all of those things.

"For the past 13 years, my only goal was to take care of my family. I've done that. On the same token, I gained another family, and that's the New England Patriots nation. Also, I want to thank Mr. Kraft, his family, Mrs. Myra, who like I said before, we really miss. She was part of the inspiration for a lot of the guys on this football team. I want to thank him and his family dearly. Thank you, Mr. Kraft, once again.

"I also want to thank my family. My wife, my three kids, my sister and her two kids. My two best friends in this whole world, who actually moved up here with me, to deal with the things that I was dealing with. Thank you all for being there, because I needed you. Thank you all very much.

"Once again, the opportunity to play in front of these magnificent fans has been the real reason why it has really pushed me and pushed the football team that I played on for 12 years to be so successful and who we are.

"Now I'll continue to go not as a football player, but to go as a man in a world that we know is fastly changing. I want to thank you all because you helped me do that as a football player.

"The many opportunities, the many players I got an opportunity to play with, the many coaches I had the experience to be coached by, I just want to thank them for the many opportunities.

"I got a lot of stuff about this in my retirement speech. Before I leave, I want to clear this up, and I want to straighten it out right now. Today, in Gillette Stadium, there's nothing going wrong between Tom Brady and Kevin Faulk. Tom Brady is the person and probably the reason why this organization is where it is today. For anyone to talk about, 'OK, I didn't say his name in my retirement speech,' it was only because he wasn't in the building. I acknowledged everyone that was in the building. He is a pillar for this New England Patriots organization, and I want to tell him thank you."