|Wes Welker, 2 others reinstated under new NFL drug policy, no word on Brandon Browner, Brian Tyms||09.17.14 at 10:55 am ET|
Wes Welker can now begin getting ready for NFL action. Brian Tyms and Brandon Browner presumably must still wait.
Under terms of the new NFL/NFLPA drug policy, players who tested positive in the offseason for stimulants banned under the old PED policy will be reinstated. Patriots coach Bill Belichick was asked Wednesday if he’s heard from the league on the possible impact the new agreement might have on Browner and Tyms.
“You have to talk to the league about that,” Belichick said. “We don’t know anything. It’s a very confidential policy and it’s really handled between the league and the players. Coaches are really out of it. I’m like Sergeant Schultz [from Hogan’s Heroes]. I don’t know anything.”
The joint announcement released Wednesday morning named only three players who qualify to return this week: Welker, Cowboys defensive back Orlando Scandrick and Rams receiver Stedman Bailey.
This brings up the question of why Browner and Tyms, two Patriots with pre-existing four-game suspensions, must still serve their suspensions.
Dolphins defensive end Dion Jordan also argued that his four-game suspension came from taking a banned stimulant.
NFL.com’s Ian Rapoport reports that the league and players union have agreed to a higher threshold for a positive marijuana test and a two-game suspension upon conviction or plea agreement for driving under the influence.
HGH testing, according to the release, should begin by the end of the month and will be fully implemented this season. NFL.com’s Albert Breer reported Wednesday that union sources claim there should be approximately 20 players affected by retroactive enforcement of the new policy.
The names of all the players who are affected by the new policy won’t be made public, according to Breer. Some players who had entered into the early stages of the program will simply be moved back a step. Names are kept confidential in the early stages of the league’s drug program. Players on the first or second step of the marijuana policy could be moved back according to Breer.
|NFL Draft’s Potential Patriots: West Virginia WR Stedman Bailey||03.07.13 at 11:37 am ET|
WEEI.com will continue to provide daily insight and analysis regarding options that might be available to the Patriots when it comes to 2013 NFL draft. Here is one is a series of profiles of players who could be on the board when it’s time for the Patriots to make a selection.
Position: Wide receiver
School: West Virginia
Weight: 193 pounds
Achievements: 2012 All-America second team (AP), 2011 All-Big East second team (coaches)
What he brings: Bailey has established a reputation as a player who shows great physicality during his routes, using his hands and body to create separation. He displays great body control and has proven to be a very reliable target. He is an intelligent receiver who finds holes and picks up first downs. Also, his quick feet and agility in the open field makes defenders miss. Bailey has a running back-type build and is difficult to tackle, frequently picking up yards after contact.
Where the Patriots could get him: Round 2 or 3
Notes: Bailey had 113 receptions in 2012 and set single-season school records for receiving yards (1,627) and touchdowns (25). He also set a WVU record for consecutive 100-yard receiving games with five. In 2011, he had 72 receptions for 1,279 yards and 12 touchdowns. As a redshirt freshman in 2010, Bailey played in all 13 games, making 24 catches for 317 yards and four touchdowns. Bailey leaves West Virginia as the school’s all-time leader in touchdown receptions with 39.
Related articles: WEEI.com: Don’t forget about Stedman Bailey
Video: Here is a package of Bailey highlights vs. Marshall, Baylor and Texas in 2012.
|40-yard dash times for wide receivers||02.24.13 at 10:02 am ET|
INDIANAPOLIS — Everyone loves them some 40-yard dash times, so we’ll update this post throughout the day with the results of some guys the Patriots could potentially look at. Click on the players’ names for stories we’ve written about them at the combine. Times are unofficial.
Tavon Austin, West Virginia: 4.25, 4.31
– Austin’s an explosive guy who models his game after Wes Welker. Could be intriguing at 29th overall if he’s there. His first time is one-tenth of a second slower than Chris Johnson‘s record.
Stedman Bailey, West Virginia: 4.50
– One of the WEEI.com draft binkies this year, I’d like Bailey in the middle rounds over Austin. That time isn’t great for his size, so maybe this drops him to the third round. Had 25 touchdowns last year.
Justin Hunter, Tennessee: 4.41, 4.44
– Good time for the 6-foot-4 Hunter. A possible first-rounder.
Da’Rick Rogers, Tennessee Tech: 4.52
DeAndre Hopkins, Clemson: 4.50
Terrance Williams, Baylor: 4.52
|Don’t forget about Stedman Bailey||02.22.13 at 4:06 pm ET|
INDIANAPOLIS — Tavon Austin is getting a lot of attention in the pre-draft process, and rightfully so, but Pats fans shouldn’t be too quick to overlook another West Virginia receiver.
Stedman Bailey‘s measurables don’t jump off the chart — he measured in at 5-foot-10 and 193 pounds — and while he’s taller than Austin, he doesn’t come close to being as fast, yet Bailey has been dominant in college. He led the nation with 25 receiving touchdowns last season and hauled in 114 passes for 1,622 yards last season.
While Austin currently projects to go in the first or second round, Stedman figures to be more of a mid-round guy. He sees himself as versatile when it comes to potentially being used in the slot or on the outside, so while Austin is the flashier option to potentially replace Wes Welker, don’t sleep on Bailey, who can be had later and potentially bring his big numbers to New England.
“Sted is definitely an underrated player,” Austin said Friday of his teammate, “and I think he should be higher than [where he is].”
As for why he’s flying under the radar, Stedman says he feels it’s “definitely” because of his measurables.
“From what I hear, time and time again, ‘He’s only 5-foot-10 and he probably won’t be able to that type of stuff in the NFL against bigger corners’ and stuff like that,” he said. “I feel like if I was 6-foot-3 or 6-foot-2, anywhere over 6-foot, with the numbers I put up I would probably be the No. 1 receiver (in the draft) but that’s not the case. It’s something I can’t control, so I just go with the flow.”
Considering he plays a position that’s been known to have its fair share of divas, Stedman seems more focused on performing well than getting the attention he deserves. He said he plays with a “dog” in him, but he doesn’t mind flying under the radar with fans and the media as long as NFL understand what he has to offer.
“I feel like I deserve the credit that’s due, but there’s a lot of things that I can’t control,” he said. “I don’t boast about it, or I don’t try to argue with anybody about it. I feel like my film work should speak for itself. I put up a lot of good numbers in college, broke a lot of records at West Virginia. If I was anywhere two inches taller, I’d probably be the No. 1 receiver in this draft, but that’s not the case.”