For the most part, Aaron Hernandez's former Patriots teammates have remained quiet when asked about him over the course of the last week. Hernandez has been accused of murdering a man, so defending him is not really a good idea at this point. It's bad for business, and the last thing any of his former teammates would want to do is come to his aid and defend him and then find out later that he is guilty of murdering Odin Lloyd.

Errr, at least, that's what we thought. But over the weekend, Hernandez's former Pats teammate Deion Branch broke his silence and spoke out about Hernandez. He referred to him as a "great guy" and said that he really hopes that Hernandez isn't guilty of the crime he's accused of committing. Further, he seemed to stand by Hernandez when pressed for his thoughts on the whole situation and defended him several times.

"Aaron is a great guy and a great friend of mine and a great teammate," Branch said during his Skills and Drills camp at Albany State University. "I love him to death, and it was shocking to hear his name involved in this situation. I truly hope and pray he doesn't have any dealings with it…That's my guy, man. That's my guy. It really shocked me. He was a great kid. Overall, I hope the best that he isn't involved with it and I hope he gets his name cleared, but most importantly, I send my prayers and condolences out to the Lloyd family."

We respect Branch's loyalty, and we're glad that he closed his statements on Hernandez by sending his prayers to the Lloyd family. But at this point, if you're Branch or any of Hernandez's other former teammates, you can't use the words "great guy" and "Aaron Hernandez" in the same sentence. After everything we've heard about him in the last week, it's just not right. So a simple "no comment" will suffice from here on out.

RELATED: Gallery: A History of Athletes Catching Murder Charges

[via Albany Herald]