Joe Fortenbaugh (Nat'l Football Post) Pats continuing to be aggressive.
The 6’4", 272-pound Fells caught 21 passes for 273 yards with three touchdowns in 2009 for the St. Louis Rams. A three-year veteran out of California-Davis, Fells is used primarily as a blocker.
Mike Reiss analyzes why a proposed Anquan Boldin trade wasn't in the cards.
"In New England, a big consideration is always the locker room," noted former NFL front-office executive Mike Lombardi, now a regular on NFL Network who also writes for the Web site National Football Post.
In the end, locker-room considerations were probably the biggest factor that squashed the possibility of Boldin coming to the Patriots.
Had they traded for Boldin and signed him to such a rich extension, they risked creating friction with someone like Welker, who prior to his injury was making a strong case for a potential pay raise over the $1.9 million he is due to earn in 2010. A team has to be careful bringing in a player from the outside and paying him an average of $8 million per season when the NFL's most productive receiver over the last three years is already on the roster and scheduled to earn one-quarter of that.
More than Welker himself, signing any player from elsewhere and making him one of the highest paid players on the club before he plays a down in a Patriots uniform can send a mixed message to others. Players keep score in the locker room, and if the Patriots didn't have veterans like Tedy Bruschi, Junior Seau, Mike Vrabel and Rosevelt Colvin at linebacker, they probably wouldn't have done it for Adalius Thomas in 2007, which is the only time they've really made such a signing in recent years.
That's probably why, assuming the reports are correct, the Patriots' interest in Boldin was tied to him playing out the final year of his contract.
- Patriots.com has collected a wide-ranging sample of what the "experts" are predicting the Patriots will do in the first round come draft weekend. Most of the usual suspects listed.
- Patriots Today - Comments from the Combine. (4.45 min. video)
- Mike Reiss notes free-agent TE Daniel Fells visited with the Patriots on Monday.
- Mike Reiss quotes Adam Schefter that the Patriots reached an agreement in principle with CB Leigh Bodden on Monday and offers his analysis of the agreement which would be a win-win for both sides.
- Albert Breer notes the uncertainty of Bodden's fate. His decision will come sometime today.
- Tom E. Curran notes the confusion regarding Leigh Bodden is the fault of Alvin Keels. Keels, also the agent of Bengals '09 draft pick Andre Smith, "could screw up a one-car funeral."
- Mike Reiss notes the Patriots are scheduled to host veteran TE Alge Crumpler on a free agent visit at Gillette this week.
- Mike Reiss reports the Patriots hosted free-agent linebacker Marques Murrell at Gillette Stadium yesterday.
- Chris Gasper notes the Patriots' focus in the first foray of free agency was on taking care of their own, building, or rebuilding, from within.
- WEEI offers the transcript of Peter King on the Dennis & Callahan show. King thinks the Pats should have pursued Boldin.
- Ian Rapoport checks in on one of the more peculiar draft prospects around, DE Greg Hardy (Ole Miss).
- Mike Reiss notes the Patriots currently field the NFL's oldest offensive unit with an average age of 27.9, and need to infuse some youth this offseason.
- Tom E. Curran feels the Patriots air of infallibility is waning. For the first time since 2000 their roster is a disheartening mix of the aged, the underachieving, the young and the overmatched.
- Tom E. Curran reports the Patriots have not yet extended an offer to Kevin Faulk.
- Mike Reiss reports DE Jarvis Green is in Denver for a free-agent visit with the Broncos today.
- Jeff Howe breaks down the Patriots 2000 draft, with the selection of Tom Brady making it one to remember. Check here for links to the full Belichick-era Draft series.
- the Patriots' moves so far in free agency, saying they need to add players externally to fill holes. (Plus 50 second video clip.) (ESPNBoston) checked in on
- Clark Judge (CBS Sports) Patriots needs: Former elites have plenty of holes. They better score big with their many picks if they intend to keep their grip on the AFC East.
- Tim Graham (ESPN) Bodden's agent is saying the New England deal is not signed, despite reports of an agreement in principle, plus other Patriots news.
- Bucky Brooks (NFL.com) Active teams in free agency can reevaluate draft strategies.
- Joe Fortenbaugh (Nat'l Football Post) Tuesday's pro day workouts. It's a big day around the country as several prospects are set to perform for NFL personnel.
- NFL.com Pro day workout schedules and analysis.
- Mike Mayock (NFL.com) With Combine over, some players moving up prospect rankings.
- Dan Majors (Pittsburgh Post-Gazette) Police to interview Roethlisberger, 7 others. QB's lawyer sees 'no criminal activity'; DNA test sought.
- Vic Carucci (NFL.com) Latest accusation against Roethlisberger sounds unsettling alarm.
- Gary Myers (NY Daily News) Ben Roethlisberger's stupid behavior justifies NY Giants' choice in 2004 draft.
- Alex Marvez (Fox Sports) Free-agency winners & losers. Why the Jets are losers with the Cromartie pickup.
- Gary Myers (NY Daily News) Players love Jets head coach Rex Ryan, but he faces big test with Antonio Cromartie.
- Paul Schwartz (NY Post) Jim Sorgi will not be doing for the Giants what he did with the Colts: back up a Manning at quarterback.
- Michael Lombardi (Nat'l Football Post) Bengals won’t spend to get Marshall. Also, Tebow starts private workouts, Sorgi has info, plus more notes.