The Ravens reportedly had some illegal padded practice at rookie camp https://t.co/wiq8PMmqvw pic.twitter.com/zuxyLZSnOl

— Yahoo Sports (@YahooSports) May 17, 2016

There's still hope Tom Brady won't miss any time to start the 2016 season. (Andy Marlin/USA Today Sports)

There’s still hope Tom Brady won’t miss any time to start the 2016 season. (Andy Marlin/USA Today Sports)

It’s been roughly three weeks since a federal court ruled Tom Brady must serve his four-game suspension for his role in Deflategate. Nothing new has happened with the case since, besides Brady and the NFLPA getting extra time to plan their next step.

There are still many questions with the case from a legal standpoint — the biggest being will Brady in fact miss the first four games of the season?

Pro Football Talk’s Mike Florio had a great breakdown of what is next for Brady. Here are some of the highlights:

— By Monday, Brady and the NFLPA will likely file a petition for a rehearing of the federal appeal. If the petition is granted, Brady likely will able to play the entire 2016 season as the full U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit hears the case.

— On the other hand, if the petition is denied, Brady and the NFLPA would need to take further action to delay the suspension and persuade the U.S. Supreme Court to consider the case.

— Brady and the NFLPA would need to ask the Second Circuit for a stay of the suspension while an appeal is prepared for the U.S. Supreme Court. If the request is denied, Brady and the NFLPA would then need to present to the full U.S. Supreme Court, but to the lone Supreme Court justice assigned to the Second Circuit.

— As it stands now Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg is that person, which Florio says is good news for Brady as she typically sides with labor over management. She could be the key to the entire case as if she did issue a stay, Brady wouldn’t have to serve a suspension until likely 2017 at the earliest.

As always with this case, stay tuned.

Blog Author: 
Ryan Hannable

At an average of 316.4 pounds, the Patriots have the 13th-heaviest starting offensive line. And at an average height of 6-foot-5, New England is tied for the second-tallest starting offensive line.

By way of comparison, four other teams have an average height of 6-foot-6, good enough for tops in the league. (Chargers, Steelers, Chiefs and Saints). The shortest? Nine teams have a starting line that averages 6-foot-4. At an average of 327.2 pounds, the Raiders have the heaviest starting offensive line. San Diego (327), the Niners (322.8), Rams (322.8) and Seahawks (320.2) all round out the top 5 when it comes to highest average weight. At the other end of the scale are the Falcons (304.4 pounds) and Texans (304.8)

The numbers were assembled by the crew over at SB Nation (check out the link for the breakdown for the entire league), and utilize the starting lineup projections at Rotoworld.

Blog Author: 
Christopher Price

Danny Amendola took a beating during the 2015 season.

Danny Amendola

Danny Amendola

Danny Amendola took a beating during the 2015 season.

This is why it’s not much of a surprise that he had offseason surgery on both his knee and ankle, according to Jeff Howe of the Boston Herald. The report adds both surgeries occurred after the playoffs and he still is rehabbing. The ankle injury was a bone spur and deemed a “quick fix.”

It is unknown at this time how long the injuries will keep Amendola out. There’s hope he will be ready for training camp, but nothing — even Week 1 — is guaranteed.

Amendola suffered the knee injury against the Bills in Week 11 and missed two games — Week 12 at Denver and Week 16 at the Jets. He finished the season with 65 catches for 648 yards and two touchdowns.

The receiver recently took a pay cut as his contract is now two years worth $7.35 million with $750,000 more in roster bonuses/catch incentives. He was scheduled to have a base salary of $11 million over the next two seasons before he restructured.

For more Patriots news, visit weei.com/patriots.

Blog Author: 
Ryan Hannable

With the number of trades the Patriots have made with the Bears of late, it’s evident the two organizations have a strong working relationship.

The relationship is strong enough that the two teams will have joint practices at Gillette Stadium on Aug. 15 and 16 prior to the Aug. 18 preseason game. It will be the second preseason game of the season for both teams.

With the number of trades the Patriots have made with the Bears of late, it’s evident the two organizations have a strong working relationship.

The relationship is strong enough that the two teams will have joint practices at Gillette Stadium on Aug. 15 and 16 prior to the Aug. 18 preseason game, the Patriots announced on Monday. It will be the second preseason game of the season for both teams.

Bill Belichick is a big fan of joint practices, but typically will only have them with teams he has a good relationship with and it appears the Bears and coach John Fox are now in that category.

Joint practices are now an annual occurrence for the Patriots as they’ve partnered up with the Saints the most times, including last year in West Virginia. The Patriots host the Saints in the first preseason game, which may be too early to hold joint practices this year.

For more Patriots news, visit weei.com/patriots.

Blog Author: 
Ryan Hannable
Bill Belichick continues to rely heavily on former Rutgers' players like Devin McCourty. (Jim Rogash/Getty Images)

Bill Belichick continues to rely heavily on former Rutgers’ players like Devin McCourty. (Jim Rogash/Getty Images)

Bill Belichick still has a soft spot for the Scarlet Knights.

The Patriots’ roster is at 90 players, and while it will obviously continue to grow and evolve and change as the regular season draws closer, at this point on the calendar, no school is better represented than Rutgers. Five former Scarlet Knights — Devin McCourty, Duron Harmon, Logan Ryan, Jonathan Freeny and Kevin Snyder — are currently on the Patriots’ roster, making them the school of choice.

Four different schools have at least three players on the New England roster: Alabama, Mississippi, North Carolina State and Stanford. (It’s been a big offseason for the Wolfpack, as three former N.C. State players: defensive lineman Markus Kuhn, offensive lineman Joe Thuney and quarterback Jacoby Brissett were all added within a month or so of each other.) Sixteen different schools are represented with two players, while everyone else is tied with one.

Check out the complete list below:

Rutgers — 5
Alabama, Mississippi, North Carolina State, Stanford — 3
Arizona State, Arkansas, Auburn, Eastern Illinois, Florida State, Georgia, Houston, Illinois, Kent State, Marshall, Michigan, Minnesota, Oregon, Pitt, Texas Tech, UCLA — 2
Alabama A&M, Arizona, Boise State, Brown, Cal, Colorado, Connecticut, East Carolina, Florida Atlantic, Georgia Tech, Hawaii, Louisiana Tech, Louisiana-Monroe, LSU, Maryland, Memphis, Michigan State, Missouri State, Monmouth, Navy, Nebraska, Nevada, North Carolina, North Dakota State, Ohio State, Oklahoma, Purdue, Sacramento State, Southern Miss, Tarleton State, Temple, Tennessee, Texas, Texas A&M, Texas Christian, Tiffin, Vanderbilt, Virginia, West Alabama, Western Michigan, Wisconsin — 1

When it comes to the roster breakdown by conference, the Patriots are currently led by Big 10 players (17). The SEC is a close second (16), while the Pac 12 (12), ACC (10) and American Athletic Conference (7) round out the Top 5. A complete list is below:

Big 10 — 17
SEC — 16
Pac 12 — 12
ACC — 10
American Athletic Conference — 7
Conference USA, Big 12 — 5
Mountain West — 3
Ohio Valley, Mid-American, Missouri Valley — 2
Southwestern Athletic, Ivy League, Sun Belt, Big Sky, Mid-American, Gulf South, FCS, Great Lakes Intercollegiate Athletic, Lone Star — 1

Blog Author: 
Christopher Price

Veteran pass rushing specialist Dwight Freeney is 35 years old, but he doesn’t sound ready to retire.

Veteran pass rusher Dwight Freeney was asked about the possibility of signing with the Patriots.  (Christian Petersen/Getty Images)

Veteran pass rusher Dwight Freeney was asked about the possibility of signing with the Patriots. (Christian Petersen/Getty Images)

Veteran pass rushing specialist Dwight Freeney is 35 years old, but he doesn’t sound ready to retire.

The veteran free agent, who had eight sacks last season with Arizona and 119.5 sacks over the course of his illustrious career, is interesting in sticking around as long as possible, and said he would love to return to the Cardinals, even after they swung a deal to obtain Chandler Jones.

Freeney, a New England native who has long been a favorite of Patriots coach Bill Belichick, was also asked about the idea of continuing his career in New England.

“Well, that’s hard to fathom. But I’m not against Bill,” Freeney told Peter King’s MMQB. “I understand the dynamic involved, but at the end of the day, this is a business. My first allegiance right now is to Arizona, if they’re interested. But if it happened that I ended up in New England, I can tell you, both sides would win.”

With the Colts, Freeney was always a handful for the Patriots to deal with — Matt Light said Freeney was the toughest matchup he faced over the course of his career.

“He’€™s a guy that I had a lot of respect for. It’€™s not just the way he plays the game, it’€™s how many different ways he can make you look silly out there, [of] which, there are plenty,” Light said of Freeney in 2012 shortly after New England’s longtime left tackle announced his retirement. “I can go through them all. We can go watch film of he and I, and you’€™ll see it yourself. He’€™s just an all-around great player. And he’€™s not a guy that talks a lot out there, he doesn’€™t have anything to say to you, he’€™s not trying to beat you with his words. He’€™s going to go out there and he’€™s going to put the work in and he’€™s going to show you how bad you can look.”

While Freeney isn’t the overwhelming pass-rushing presence he used to be, as a situational player, he could be an intriguing fit with the Patriots. One thing to remember when it comes to a possible Freeney-in-Foxboro scenario is that New England acquired a veteran pass-rushing end in Chris Long, and also has established players like Rob Ninkovich and Jabaal Sheard already in the system. If the Patriots are interested, it’s unclear how they might make it all fit, but Freeney’s response certainly provides some food for thought.

Blog Author: 
Christopher Price