|Report: Patriots in on Brian Hartline, possibly to replace Danny Amendola||03.05.15 at 3:55 pm ET|
The Patriots are considering all of their options when it comes to their wide receivers, and one of them may be veteran Brian Hartline.
According to Cleveland.com, the Patriots are among a group of four teams seriously considering making a bid for the 28-year-old veteran of five NFL seasons and may have already made a preliminary offer. Hartline hit the market after playing just two of the five seasons in his contract he signed with the Dolphins in March 2013. Miami signed him for five years and $30 million, with $12.5 million guaranteed and a $7 million signing bonus.
Amendola, 29, signed a similar contract at the same time, inking for five years and $28.5 million with $10 million guaranteed and a $6 million signing bonus. Amendola’s production picked up in the second half of this season and he played a key role as a kick returner. He had five catches for 48 yards and a touchdown in the Super Bowl win over the Seahawks. He also had two touchdown receptions in the playoff win over the Ravens.
Still, Amendola’s targets and catches were down drastically in 2014, his second season in New England, catching just 27 passes for 200 yards and only one touchdown on 42 targets. He caught 54 passes for 633 yards on 83 targets in 2013. His biggest impact came on kickoff returns, returning 20 kicks for an average of 24.1 yards.
Cleveland.com reports that the Patriots could be willing to cut Amendola and replace him with Hartline if it clears cap space and gives them more flexibility.
The Patriots are reportedly in the mix with the Texans, Browns (Hartline went to Ohio State and is from nearby Canton, OH), Bears and possibly the Colts. The Dolphins have already not ruled out making a run again at the receiver, who was a fourth-round pick of Miami in 2009 and has played his entire six-year career in South Florida. Hartline caught 298 passes for 4,243 yards and 13 touchdowns. In 2012 and 2013, he became just the fifth receiver in Dolphins history to record back-to-back 1,000-yard seasons. Last season, Hartline was relegated to a back-up, grabbing only 39 passes for 474 yards and two touchdowns.
If he chose his hometown Browns, he could help fill the void left by Josh Gordon, who’s serving a minimum one-year ban for violating the NFL’s substance abuse policy.
|Report: Peyton Manning prepared to take $4 million pay cut to stay with Broncos||03.04.15 at 4:13 pm ET|
According to a report from ESPN’s Chris Mortensen and Jeff Legwold, the perennial All Pro quarterback is ready to take a $4 million pay cut to play for the Broncos in 2015. He was scheduled to make $19 million next season. According to Mortensen, Manning will agree to the pay cut to free up cash for Denver to be aggressive in the free agent market, potentially signing their own targeted free agents.
There had been speculation that Manning had been considering stepping away from the game after 17 NFL seasons, not including 2011, when he sat out his final season with the Colts due to a neck injury.
The money would be guaranteed, assuming he passes his physical.
Manning, who turns 39 in March, is also scheduled to make $19 million in 2016, the final year of his five-year, $96 million deal he signed when he landed in Denver in 2012. Manning was fourth in the NFL in passing yards in 2014 with 4,727 yards and second in the league with 39 touchdown passes. If Manning agrees, he will be the second marquis quarterback to re-do his deal in the last three months. On Dec. 29, Tom Brady signed a three-year, $27 million restructured contract, converting $24 million in full guarantees to an injury-only clause with the Patriots.
Manning played the last month of the 2014 season with a quadriceps injury. The Broncos lost to the Colts in the divisional round of the playoffs at home. That playoff loss was his ninth “one-and-done” of his career.
— Chris Mortensen (@mortreport) March 4, 2015
— Jeff Legwold (@Jeff_Legwold) March 4, 2015
|Bryan Stork (knee) upgraded to probable for Super Bowl, joining 6 others||01.31.15 at 5:50 pm ET|
Bryan Stork (knee) was officially upgraded to probable from questionable on Saturday afternoon, just over 24 hours before kickoff against the Seahawks. Stork was limited in practice all week, and last week as well, after injuring his knee in the divisional round game and missing the AFC title game.
Six other players are still listed as probable, including Tom Brady (ankle) who participated in full in practice all week. Darrelle Revis (rest) was limited in practice Friday for the first time all season, and is probable for the game. Also probable include the players who were limited in practice all week — Akeem Ayers (Thur. and Fri. foot), Dont’a Hightower (shoulder), Chris Jones (elbow) and Sealver Siliga (foot).
The final injury report of the season came out on Friday for Super Bowl XLIX.
Here is the complete UPDATED Patriots injury report:
|Pete Carroll ‘will support’ any decision of expectant father Richard Sherman||01.30.15 at 11:42 am ET|
PHOENIX — Earlier in the week, Vince Wilfork said he would always choose family and faith over football.
Sherman has been asked this week what he would do if his son arrived in the hours before or during the Super Bowl.
Sherman thinks his boy will be a “disciplined young man,” waiting until after Sunday’s game. Sherman still would not commit on whether he’d miss the game.
‘Well that’s up to Richard,” Carroll said. “He knows that he has an opportunity to face a great decision. Whenever our players have a personal family issue that comes up, it’s always about the family first and they have to decide what’s best for them, and I support that. However he goes with that- if he’s faced with that decision- we’ll support that. We’ll see how that goes. Wish him luck.”
Of course, Carroll couldn’t help adding a little humor. “Can’t wait to see little Petey.”
PHOENIX — Even Katy Perry couldn’t resist making fun of the ridiculous hype.
We’re not talking about the Super Bowl but rather Deflategate.
Wearing a two-piece combo with a football design covering her chest, Perry made a joke before promoting her halftime performance on Sunday.
“I don’t think I’m so much of an expert on the game of football, but I can assure everyone in here, nothing in my performance will be deflated,” the pop superstar said during Thursday’s press conference.
As for hyping her own act, the 30-year-old Perry promised sharks and lions would be on stage as part of her highly-anticipated performance.
Perry also promised a secret surprise guest.
“It will be a real female-fun night. Jaws will drop, faces will melt,” Perry said.
|Bill Belichick on HOF election for Junior Seau on Saturday: ‘It’s obviously got to happen’||01.29.15 at 2:22 pm ET|
CHANDLER, Ariz. — Junior Seau will be elected to the Hall of Fame this Saturday by pro football writers.
At least that’s the assumption Bill Belichick is going on. The Patriots coach couldn’t have made his support for the player and the man more evident Thursday morning, two days before the election takes place.
“Well, it would mean a lot. It’s obviously got to happen. I can’t imagine having a Professional Football Hall of Fame without Junior Seau in it,” Belichick began. “The one word that comes to me when I think of Junior in life and football [is] passion. He’s a very passionate guy, lot of energy, lot of enthusiasm. First guy in the building in the morning, watching film, lifting weights, ready for practice, always loved to practice, flying around on the practice field, energy before the game on the sideline [and] during the game, emotional player, but a smart player.”
Seau was a 10-time All-Pro, 12-time Pro Bowl selection, and named to the NFL 1990s All-Decade Team. The San Diego native played college football at Southern Cal before being chosen by the Chargers as the fifth overall pick of the 1990 NFL draft. Seau started for 13 seasons for the Chargers before being traded to the Miami Dolphins, where he spent three years. Then, before the 2006 season, Belichick finally got a chance to coach one of his favorite players. He did so for the final four seasons of his career.
“[He] was a player that played with a purpose; played with good physical skill; but also good concentration, good awareness. Great team player, very supportive of his teammates, I mean, everybody in the locker room loved Junior,” Belichick said. “They loved what he did and they loved the way that he interacted with the team. He was a great player. I was very fortunate to have the opportunity to coach him. We had a lot of great experiences together.”
Seau retired after the 2009 season Obviously it was the end of his career; things were a little different than when he was in San Diego and so forth. But he brought a lot of energy and passion to our team, and I personally had a very good relationship with Junior. I loved coaching him and he always expressed how much he enjoyed playing on the New England Patriots and that meant a lot to me.” Read the rest of this entry »
|Source: Fire alarms ‘not bothering [Patriots] at all’||at 1:55 pm ET|
CHANDLER, Ariz — It hasn’t risen to the level of Alarmgate yet but there’s been some loud goings on at the Patriots’ Super Bowl hotel the last two night.
But fortunately, the players haven’t been affected. So says two sources close to the team staying at the expansive Sheraton Wild Horse Pass resort.
On Monday and Wednesday nights, the alarms sounded but no Patriots have reported losing any sleep.
One player told WEEI.com that “those things aren’t bothering us at all” and “I haven’t heard any teammates saying anything at all about them.”
It’s not known exactly how or why the alarms are going off. All that’s known is that the alarms in question are located in a corner of the huge compound far removed from the players.
“If there has, I haven’t heard it,” Brady said. “I must be sleeping through it, so that’s good.”