Wide receiver Chad Johnson, who caught just 15 passes for 276 yards and a touchdown in his only season with the Patriots, hinted in an interview with the Miami Herald that one of the reasons he struggled in New England last year was because his “personality was controlled.”

The Patriots have signed former Boston College defensive lineman Tim Bulman, according to Pro Football Talk. A Milton native and former defensive tackle with the Texans, the 29-year-old Bulman has been in the league for six seasons -- five with Houston and one with Arizona. His best season came in 2008 with the Texans, when he finished the year with 18 tackles and four sacks.

For more Patriots news, visit the team page at weei.com/patriots.

The Patriots have signed free agent tight end Visanthe Shiancoe, according to Jason Cole of Yahoo! Sports. Pro Football Talk is reporting that New England inked Shiancoe to a one-year deal worth $1.2 million, with $400,000 in guaranteed money and $800,000 in incentives.

The 32-year-old Shiancoe has been in the league for nine seasons, including the last five with the Vikings. The 6-foot-4, 250-pounder has 243 catches for 2,677 receiving yards and 27 touchdowns in the NFL career, including 56 catches for 566 yards and 11 touchdowns in 2009, his best year as a pro.

Multiple reports indicate the Patriots have placed six players on the active/physically unable to perform list for the start of training camp: Tight ends Jake Ballard and Daniel Fells; offensive linemen Logan Mankins and Sebastian Vollmer; linebacker Brandon Spikes and defensive lineman Myron Pryor.

That group joins rookie wide receiver Jeremy Ebert, who was placed on active/PUP last week after failing his physical. Players on the active/PUP can be removed from the list at any time.

The Patriots announced Friday that they will hold joint practices with the Buccaneers next month in advance of their Aug. 24 preseason game. The practices will be held in Florida on Aug. 22 and 23, and will be the second series of joint practices that New England will hold this year -- the Patriots and Saints are expected to take the field together in Foxboro on Aug. 7 and 8 before their game at Gillette Stadium on Aug. 9.

For more Patriots news, check out weei.com/patriots.

It wasn’t a great day for the Patriots’ rookie class.



Five Patriots rookies failed their physicals on Thursday, according to Howard Balzer of Sirius/XM Radio. Seventh-round pick Jeremy Ebert and undrafted rookies Justin Francis, Matt Roark, Jeremiah Warren and Markus Zusevics all failed their physicals, according to Balzer. Ebert, a wide receiver out of Northwestern who was limited in spring camps, was placed on the active/physically unable to perform list, while the other four were placed on the non-football injury list.

The Patriots will kick the tires on another veteran tight end this week, as they will reportedly work out Visanthe Shiancoe on Wednesday in Foxboro, according to Steve Wyche of the NFL Network. The 32-year-old Shiancoe has been in the league for nine seasons, including the last five with the Vikings. The 6-foot-4, 250-pound Shiancoe has 243 catches for 2,677 receiving yards and 27 touchdowns in the NFL career, including 56 catches for 566 yards and 11 touchdowns in 2009, his best year as a pro.

The Patriots have agreed to terms with rookie linebacker Dont'a Hightower, according to Pro Football Talk, making him the final member of New England's draft class to sign.

Should we be worried about Rob Gronkowski?

Is there a reason the Patriots, according to a report in The Boston Globe, have spiked the Summer of Gronk? Is it as simple as a reminder to get ready for work, or is there something more going on?



KIRK MINIHANE

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