Hernandez, serving a life sentence without parole, was acquitted in a double-homicide last week. His attorney pledged to fight his prior conviction and expressed confidence that Hernandez, 27, would be free again.
The attorney, Jose Diaz, said he did not believe Hernandez committed suicide. He would conduct his own investigation, Diaz said.
Hernandez hanged himself with his bedsheet, authorities said.
A fourth-round draft pick out of the University of Florida, Hernandez caught 175 passes in three seasons. At one point, he signed a $40 million extension with the team. Upon his arrest, the Patriots released him.
Former Florida coach Urban Meyer attempted to distance himself from Hernandez.
“Relating or blaming these serious charges to the University of Florida, myself or our staff is wrong and irresponsible,” Meyer said last week.
“Our staff, myself and our families worked very hard to mentor and guide [Hernandez],” he added.