As Steve Belichick used to tell his son, “The hay is in the barn.”



WEEI.com has confirmed via a league source a report that Oklahoma State wide receiver Dez Bryant had a workout with the Patriots at Gillette Stadium on Thursday. Bryant is a 6-foot-2, 225 pound receiver who had 87 receptions for 1,480 yards and 19 touchdowns as a junior in 2008, but sat out most of 2009 after the NCAA ruled him ineligible because he reportedly lied to investigators about his affiliation with Deion Sanders.

According to the latest NFLPA records, four Patriots have had their base salaries increase for the 2010 season because they’ve reached unspecified incentives. Two rookies saw a boost — tackle Sebastian Vollmer went from $395,000 to $420,000, a bump of $25,000, while cornerback Darius Butler went from $395,000 to $545,000, an increase of $150,000. Two veterans also benefited greatly, as safety Brandon McGowan went from $730,000 to $1,330,000 and defensive lineman Mike Wright moved from $1,200,000 to $2,125,000.

Syracuse defensive tackle Arthur Jones will work out for the Patriots this week, according to multiple outlets. Jones is a 6-foot-3, 301-pounder who was slowed by a knee injury at the end of the 2009 season (it caused him to miss the final three games of the year for the Orange and the Senior Bowl, as well as the combine in February), but still managed to land a spot on the All-BIG EAST First Team. In 2009, Jones recorded 19 tackles, including 12 solo and seven for a loss of yards. He also had 1.5 sacks and two fumble recoveries.

The Patriots are going to hold a private workout with Connecticut punter Desi Cullen tomorrow in Hartford, according to a league source. Cullen, a 23-year-old out of Louisville, averaged 42.8 yards per punt this past season (good 28th in the country). A 6-foot, 201-pounder, he’s best described as a combo guy who can punt (he was a semifinalist for the Ray Guy Award), handle kickoff duties for the Huskies, as well as hold for field goals and kick some long field goals.

In Peter King's Monday Morning Quarterback at SI.com, former Patriots wide receiver Donte' Stallworth recounts the events of March 14, 2009, when he hit a man with car, causing the man's death. Stallworth, who was charged with DUI, served a brief jail sentence and received a one-year suspension from the NFL. Stallworth says that he did not feel like he was driving impaired, and he explains in detail what happened when he saw the man was crossing the busy highway.

The Patriots have reached an agreement with veteran free agent defensive lineman Damione Lewis, according to ESPN's Adam Schefter. The 32-year-old Lewis was a first-round pick out of Miami in 2001 and has played with St. Louis (2001-05) and Carolina (2006-09). His finest season came with the Rams in 2004 where he played in all 16 games and ended up with career highs of 61 tackles and five sacks in addition to eight quarterback pressures. For more Patriots news, check out our football blog, It Is What It Is.

 

It's safe to say veteran LaDainian Tomlinson is excited to be in the AFC East for several reasons, not the least of which is the chance to face the Patriots twice a season. The running back, speaking with New York-area media at the Jets' practice facility on Thursday, sounded fired up about the opportunity to square off with New England on a regular basis now that he's in the same division. "It's going to be fun," Tomlinson told reporters.

FOXBORO — Like everyone else around New England, current Patriots backup quarterback Brian Hoyer has heard the rumors the franchise is interested in drafting much-ballyhooed Florida quarterback Tim Tebow. Hoyer, who said he had a chance to meet Tebow the other day when the ex-Gator came to Foxboro for a visit, doesn’t seem fazed about the prospect of competing with the former Heisman Trophy winner for a job.

The NFL announced its 2010 preseason schedule Wednesday afternoon, and the Patriots will open their slate against the defending Super Bowl champion Saints at home on Aug. 12. New England will also face Atlanta the following week in a nationally-televised contest against the Falcons in the Georgia Dome, with that kickoff coming at 8 p.m. The Patriots round out their preseason schedule by hosting the Rams on Aug. 26, and traveling to meet the Giants in the preseason finale the following weekend — the ninth time in 10 years New England and New York will meet in the preseason.