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Sources tell D&C that Brady deal is almost done

09.07.10 at 9:37 am ET
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WEEI is reporting that a new deal for Tom Brady is close. (AP)

“Tremendous progress” has been made on a new contract for Patriots quarterback Tom Brady and the deal is close to being done, according to sources close to WEEI’s “Dennis & Callahan” show.

(To listen to audio of the report, click here.)

The former NFL MVP is scheduled to earn $6.5 million this season in the final year of a six-year contract he signed in 2005. It was a deal that was considered close to being an upper echelon contract when he signed in 2005, but now, leaves him woefully underpaid when compared to other quarterbacks around the league.

Both the Patriots and Brady have been mostly mum about any sort of negotiations regarding a new deal, and the quarterback said earlier this summer he’s “not into playing games” when it comes to hammering out a new contract.

“I just want to come out here and do the best I can do,” Brady said in an interview earlier this summer. “You know, whether you make $1 playing, or you make millions of dollars like we do make, I just really enjoy playing quarterback for this team. I have since the day I stepped on the field. It’s something I relish, and every year is an opportunity.”

Patriots’ management has long maintained that they want Brady around for a long time.

“[Brady’s] just somebody I have a great amount of admiration for and somebody that I like a tremendous amount and is a great guy,” Patriots president Jonathan Kraft told WEEI earlier this summer. “From where I sit the relationship that we’ve had with him and the relationship that I’ve had with him is the same as it’s always been and if anything, it’s stronger. … I’ll echo what [Patriots owner Robert Kraft] has said a bunch of times, I really believe that Tom Brady is going to be the quarterback of this team for a long time to come.”

A Tuesday morning report from the Boston Herald quotes a source close to the negotiations as saying the Patriots have offered Brady a three-year deal worth $58 million that comes out to $19.3 million annually.

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Slater survives another cutdown in Foxboro

09.07.10 at 1:00 am ET
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Matthew Slater. (AP)

FOXBORO — Since he arrived in Foxboro as a fifth-round pick out of UCLA in 2008, few players have displayed as much positional versatility as Matthew Slater.

He’s one of only a handful of players under Bill Belichick who has worn a white (offense) and blue (defense) jersey, working as both a wide receiver and defensive back on the practice field. In addition, he’s served many roles as a special teamer, including on kick coverage and as a gunner.

Despite some rough moments over the course of his two seasons in New England, Slater has survived. He was one of 10 players singled out for their attendance in the offseason conditioning program. In addition, he remains one of the fastest players on the team. Those two points, as well as his versatility, ultimately won his a spot on New England’s 53-man roster this season.

The 25-year-old acknowledges some people wonder how he’s managed to stick around as long as he has. (One poster on this site wrote: “Matthew Slater stinks. He must have blackmail photos of the Krafts to make the team.”) Slater, a serious man of faith, said that sort of thing is out of his hands.

“I’m a big man of faith, and I just thank God,” the 6-foot, 198-pounder said on Monday afternoon. “Everybody has their own reasons as to why I’m here, why I wouldn’t have been here. But in the end, it’s in God’s hands. I’m a firm believer in that. For whatever reason, he just chose to bless me to be here another year. My first response was, ‘Thank you, Jesus.’ And now, it’s time to work.”
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Read More: bll belichick, Matthew Slater, Pierre Woods, Sam Aiken

McKenzie will be added to Pats’ practice squad

09.06.10 at 10:07 pm ET
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Linebacker Tyrone McKenzie has cleared waivers and will be added to the Patriots practice squad. McKenzie, 6-foot-2 and 245 pounds, was drafted by the Patriots in the third round (97th overall) of the 2009 draft out of South Florida. He missed the entire 2009 training camp due to an injury and was placed on injured reserve on Aug. 31 and missed his rookie season. He was released over the weekend, but will now join New England’s practice squad.

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Moss: ‘Feels like I am not wanted’

09.06.10 at 8:26 pm ET
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In an interview Monday with CBSSports.com, Patriots wide receiver Randy Moss spoke about his frustration regarding his current contract status. Moss is entering the final year of a three-year deal and believes that his level of the play with the Patriots warrants an extension.

“When you have done so much and put so much work in, it kind of feels like I am not wanted,” Moss told CBSSports.com. “I am taking that in stride and playing my final year out and whatever the future holds is what it holds, but it is kind of a bad feeling — feeling not wanted. It is not like my production has gone down. I am speaking from an individual standpoint. I don’t know about Tom [Brady's] or whoever else’s contract.

“I am a little older and understand the nature of the business — the older you get the more your skills supposedly diminish, but I think I am getting wiser in how to use my physical skills. That’s the frustrating part when you put so much heart and desire into things and feel like you are not wanted.”

Moss — who until Monday had not addressed his contract situation since May — had his 10th 1,000-yard receiving season in 2009. He also led all AFC players and tied Vernon Davis of the 49ers and Larry Fitzgerald of the Cardinals for NFL honors with 13 TD catches.

Page, White ready for new start with Patriots

09.06.10 at 6:22 pm ET
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FOXBORO — When he was asked if he had any preconceived ideas about the Patriots before he was dealt to New England over the weekend, it’s no surprise defensive back Jarrad Page — a former college baseball player who was selected three different times in the MLB draft before opting for a football career — dropped a baseball metaphor on reporters.

“The Patriots area team that’s kind of like the Yankees,” Page said Monday afternoon after his first practice in Foxboro. “You never like them, but when you get a chance to play for them, you’re excited. You’re really happy you get to go to a team that’s a perennial winner.”

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Jarrad Page was dealt to the Patriots over the weekend. (AP)

Pinstripes aside, Page and linebacker Tracy White got their first taste of life with the Patriots on Monday, less than 48 hours after New England picked them up in separate deals.

Page is a 6-foot, 225-pound defensive back who was taken in the seventh round of the 2006 draft out of UCLA. The 25-year old started all 16 games in 2007 and 2008 for the Chiefs, coming away with a career-high four picks in 2008. (He has 10 interceptions over four seasons in the NFL.)

But he landed on IR with a calf issue, and the two sides grew apart. (He felt he was misdiagnosed.) He requested a trade over the summer, and the Chiefs acquiesced this past weekend, sending him to the Patriots for an undisclosed draft pick.

“He’s been a productive player, and we’ll see exactly how he fits in,” Patriots coach Bill Belichick said of Page, who will wear No. 44, formerly worn by linebacker Tyrone McKenzie. “I’m glad we got him. I think he will be a good addition to the group. I think he will help us. Looks like he’s been able to do some different things in the past and we’ll see how all that fits in with us.”

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Read More: Bill Belichick, Jarrad Page, Patriots, Tracy White

Patriots add James and Mastrud to the practice squad

09.06.10 at 4:11 pm ET
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The Patriots have just announced they have added running back Javarris James and tight end Jerod Mastrud to the practice squad. Here’s the text of the complete announcement that was just made by the team:
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Wheatley, Ojinnaka and Kaczur only three missing from start of practice

09.06.10 at 3:19 pm ET
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FOXBORO – Just got back from the media availability portion of Patriots practice. The following players were not on the field: cornerback Terrence Wheatley, offensive lineman Quinn Ojinnaka and offensive lineman Nick Kaczur. The following players were on the field but in sweats: wide receiver Julian Edelman, cornerback Kyle Arrington, running back Laurence Maroney, defensive end Jermaine Cunningham, defensive lineman Ron Brace and offensive lineman Rich Ohrnberger.

In addition, there was a “mystery player” wearing No. 84 and working with the receivers. He looks like a tight end — we’ll try and get more information on him as the day progresses.

The practice was on the lower fields behind Gillette Stadium and was in full pads.

Read More: nick kaczur, Patriots, Quinn Ojinnaka, Terrence Wheatley
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