FOXBOROUGH, Mass. -- Brian Waters spent training camp playing with his kids.
The New England Patriots talked to Waters last week and by Monday, one week before the season opener at Miami, Waters was in the locker room preparing for his first practice.
"I had numerous phone calls. It was just about finding a situation that was best for me," said Waters, a five-time Pro Bowl guard. "It's a great organization, so why not? The record speaks for itself. It's a football team that's a contender year in and year out."
Waters said he got the call Friday, visited New England on Saturday and reached a deal Sunday.
"I've been a fan of Brian's for quite a while now," said Mankins, whose locker is next to Waters' cubicle. "He's a good player and a good guy, so we're happy to have him."
Waters spent 11 seasons with the Kansas City Chiefs before he was released at the end of July. Waters says it was a mutual parting. Waters also is a member of the NFL Players Association's executive committee, which kept him busy during the lockout.
He expected to play again, even as teams completed training camp and the preseason with Waters still at home.
"Being home with the family, there's nothing wrong with that. That's not a bad thing at all. I was enjoying that time," he said. "This is what I do. I wanted to play this year and it just so happened that a great opportunity presented itself to me."
Copyright 2011 by The Associated Press