Brandon Bolden opens up about cancer battle in 2018


Brandon Bolden took a moment Thursday to open up about a subject much bigger than football.

The New England Patriots running back revealed on Instagram that he battled cancer in 2018. His diagnosis came after the Patriots' Super Bowl 52 loss to the Philadelphia Eagles.

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He spoke to reporters about the motivation behind his Instagram post and what he went through after being diagnosed with cancer almost four years ago.

"It was epidermoid carcinoma," Bolden said. "I got it removed in 2018 and still was cancer-free at the beginning of this season and feel fine. It was just one of those moments where -- I was messing with my son and my little brother about this -- I actually looked in the mirror and I was like, 'I got my full face back.' That's what made me go through the pictures and everything else.

"Just to show, like, I had cancer and I did not think I was going to be able to play another down in the NFL, and here I am three years after, going on four years, after having the surgery and still working strong. It took a lot and it was a lot of naysaying from doctors and everything else. I'm just here to prove people wrong and continue to grow and get stronger."

A number of current and former Patriots teammates showed their support for Bolden including Damien Harris, Jonnu Smith, Patrick Chung, James White, Duron Harmon, and Danny Shelton.


Bolden is in the midst of his eighth season and second stint with the Patriots. Signed as an undrafted free agent in 2012, Bolden has been a key player on special teams in addition to the backfield and has helped the Patriots to two Super Bowl titles.