It’s the deadest period on the NFL calendar.

Making snap judgments based on a few spring workouts isn’t good football business. But after watching 10 spring practices involving the Patriots over the last six weeks -- four at rookie minicamp, four at the organized team activities (OTAs) and two at full-squad minicamp -- we know a lot more about the team than we did in the days following the draft.

FOXBOROUGH -- In a high-tech world, Shawn Springs is a low-tech cornerback.

Contract disputes usually come with angry rhetoric, harsh words and prolonged absences.

While there were major moves on offense and defense this offseason for the Patriots, no unit saw more important changes than special teams.

Truth be told, before he got to New England, Fred Taylor wasn’t the biggest Tom Brady fan.

It remains one of the unassailable truths of professional sports, even in a bad economy.
And, for some reason, the Patriots continue to fight it.
When it comes to high-end talent, the closer you get to free agency, the more it costs. The longer you wait, the worse it gets.



Call it summer vacation.

For most of his career, he’s been a leading man. But this offseason, he’s been a bit player, content to let others take center stage.

Rodney Harrison, who announced his retirement from professional football on Wednesday morning, will be remembered as having a unique place in New England’s football legacy.