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New England Patriots Talk: Media OTAs Kick Off In Foxboro

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New England Patriots Talk: Optional Team Workouts Kick Off In Foxboro

As of today, OTAs for all 32 NFL teams with the media were officially underway. Every team had to work with their new players to get a feel for how well they will transition to the NFL. The Patriots were fully engaged today with all players attending with the exceptions of [Wide Receiver] Malcolm Mitchell, [Full Safety] Duron Harmon, [Kicker] Stephen Gostkowski and [Middle Linebacker] Dont’a Hightower all not attending.

Among the many players today, [Tight End] Rob Gronkowski was in full effort today. It seems that this will indicate that his back surgery that he had this past December is behind him and appears to have made a full recovery. With news of his re-structured contract, which if he plays up to his full ability, will become the most highest paid Tight End in the entire NFL.

One who was of particular note at the OTAs was [Cornerback] Malcolm Butler. With all the buzz around him this off-season, one would wonder what he would be thinking of how to approach the upcoming training camp, especially with him missing two weeks of voluntary workouts. When commented by the media about Butler’s struggle with contract disputes between him and the Patriots, he stated:

“The past is the past,” Butler said. “I’m just here to do a job and do anything to help the team win. Just moving forward. Whatever happens, happens.

“Just got to keep working. Ignore the noise and keep working no matter what. You’ve got a job to do no matter where you’re at. I’m glad to be here to do this job.”

While Butler seems to be pushing himself further, he has already been established as the #1 Cornerback on the team as he was selected to play 1-on-1 with new [Wide Reciever] Brandin Cooks from the New Orleans Saints. With Stephon Gilmore playing against Julian Edelman fairly establishes where the two are on the depth chart. Overall, the OTAs for players looks promising despite the dreary overcast over Foxboro this morning.

And in other news, it seems that the Quarterbacks are all present and accounted for with Tom Brady leading the way and backed by Jimmy Garoppollo and Jacoby Brissett. Tom Brady overall had the best of the reps with 9 of 14 completions compared to Jimmy’s 7 of 13 and Brissett only getting 3 of 6 on completion drills today. The players are all likely to improve as summer comes closer and the weather improves. Hopefully, we will be seeing more improvement before cuts began, especially as the new NFL regulations now abolished the roster reduction to 75 players. Instead, teams now only have a ‘cut down day’, where they take a 90 man roster down to a 53 man roster. This will come after the fourth pre-season game and will be finalized within that week. Things will be tough especially a team this loaded for the reigning Super Bowl champions.

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Patriots Talk: Josh McDaniels And The Colts Wouldn’t Have Worked Out

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A Case of Behind The Scenes

 

 

Josh McDaniels and the Patriots thought their time to depart after their tough loss in Super Bowl 52 was unavoidable. However, not only did Josh McDaniels get extended, but its been many rumors that Robert Kraft had contacted McDaniels literally hours before he was suppose to take off Tuesday for Indianapolis.

 

It’s difficult to know anything within the Patriots’ organization as they have remained firm in not explaining what goes on behind closed doors. However, multiple sources over at ESPN for the past week since the story broke out about McDaniels’ abrupt decision to not become the Indiapolis Colts Head Coach. The way things broke down was that Kraft and Bill Belichick got together and sat down with McDaniels. With Defensive coordinator, Matt Patricia going to Detroit, this seemed like a desperation move to maintain the coaching staff from the previous season.

 

However, according to ESPN writer Mike Reiss, there was more to the situation then just that. In one of his articles regarding the McDaniels’ decision, he stated:

 

Belichick offered to include McDaniels on more of the inner workings of the organization, from roster construction to financial/salary-cap related considerations. That was viewed as “extremely valuable” to McDaniels. Ownership also endorsed it as a way to extend Belichick’s influence on the organization in future years, although no assurances were given to McDaniels that he would succeed Belichick. McDaniels, who a source confirmed got a significant raise, has privately said in the past that he did not want to be the coach who succeeds Belichick. Although he since may have changed his mind, McDaniels knows Belichick, after five Super Bowl victories, will be a hard act to follow.

Beyond financial and professional stability, McDaniels also was thinking of his family. He wanted a long-term commitment from the Patriots so his four children, ages 12 to 3, would be able to attend the same schools over the next several years. The transient life of a coach doesn’t always make that possible.

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Former NFL Official Claims Eagles Used Illegal Play To Win Super Bowl

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Did you have doubts that the Eagles lined up correctly on the Nick Foles touchdown catch?

Well, you are not the only one with a former analyst now claiming that Philly was indeed lined up illegally on the play.

Appearing on the Talk of Fame Network, former head of officiating and FOX rules analyst Mike Pereira said the Eagles were in fact lined up illegally.

“I know the league came out and said that it’s a judgment call, which it is,” Pereira said, via Pro Football Talk. “The down judge, who was the one that [the play] was on his side of the field, they felt that it was his judgment, and [receiver Alshon Jeffrey] was close enough. Well, he wasn’t. They lined up wrong.

“Not only that, it’s a trick play. And if you’re going to run a trick-type play, then you have to be lined up properly. You could either have six men on the line, or you could have an ineligible number lined up at the end of the line, which was the case. I know what the league has said, but they would have been a lot more comfortable if they would have called an illegal formation.

“We always use a yard [within the line of scrimmage], maybe a yard-and-a-half. But that’s two [yards], and even a little bit beyond two. It’s kind of one of those that has no effect on the play. I get it. But they didn’t line up properly. And it really should’ve been called.”

Bottom line is it was simply a judgment call be the officials, might have been the completely wrong judgment, but based on what we know about Super Bowl LII the New England Patriots were never going to win the game. The Malcolm Butler benching paired with Doug Pederson‘s mindset of keeping his foot on the gas and exposing New England’s weaknesses were the reasons the Patriots lost the game, not this particular play.

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Boston Herald Runs Ron Borges’s Tom Brady Hoax Story

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Thursday night Boston Herald reporter Ron Borges penned a story with this headline “Tom Brady wants to get paid like Jimmy G, or he’ll skip OTAs”. A headline and a story that was uncovered as a hoax on Friday.

The Kirk and Callahan show on WEEI revealed that one of their texters pretended to be Tom Brady’s agent Don Yee when texting Borges. The texter dubbed “Nick in Boston” informed Borges that Tom Brady intended to sit out New England’s preseason workouts unless he was paid like Jimmy Garoppolo who signed the largest deal in NFL history on Thursday.

K&C tweeted out the screenshots of texts with Borges outing the story as a complete and utter hoax.

Borges story was actually refuted right off the bat on Thursday night with both NBC Sports Boston and NESN claiming the story held no truth.

As for Borges, this is not his first major failure as a reporter. Since the Herald ran the story they are now looking into the matter.

Overall tricking Borges isn’t a great thing to do. Lying about someone’s identity is never nice with some reporters coming to the defense of Borges. But it is hard to have sympathy for a “journalist” that failed to check his sources and run with a story with only one source confirming of a major story.

Either way, there is no truth to a Brady holdout.

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