Peter King mentions that "several from the players' side singled out Patriots owner Bob Kraft for his role in getting momentum going when there was very little last spring."
As one of the key members of the players' side told me: "He told us, 'I'm not going to hope either side makes a bad deal, because then our relationship suffers, and then the whole business suffers. And my family's going to own this team for years and years. We want to see it healthy for both sides.' That registered with us. He's a real deal-maker.''
Kevin Foote (Daily World) Kevin Faulk facing questions as well.
"Like everybody else, I'm kind of waiting to see what's going to happen," Faulk said. "I've heard a lot of different people speculating on the answers to those questions, but it's hard to say. We just have to get back to it and see how it goes."
So it was going to be a unique offseason for Faulk anyway as he attempted to recover in time for the 2011 season. Not being able to work with and get advice from the Patriots' training team during the owners lockout, though, complicated his recovery.
"I'm a football player," Faulk said. "All I know is hard work. That's the only way I've ever known how to do things. But those guys (trainers) are professionals. They know what they're doing. "If I'm feeling soreness, I might figure that's just part of football and keeping fighting through it. Those guys know how to deal with it. Not being able to communicate with those guys definitely made it tougher for me."
"I don't really know what to expect," Faulk said. "For me, the important thing right now is to get back on the field, take a hit and get through the mental part of it."
One thing Faulk is convinced of, however, is the typical NFL offseason of the past was much more useful than some recent analysis has portrayed.
"I think it's very crucial," Faulk said. "I hear people saying that it's not important, but I think it's very important for a lot of reasons. First of all, you get a feel for the new players on your team. It's more than just going through the mini-camps and the OTAs. You're building a team."
"Even when you're just working out together in the offseason, you're building your team. You're building trust and faith in one another when you see your teammates working hard. It's very important."
- Shalise Manza Young reports Tully Banta-Cain underwent surgery Friday night for an abdominal tear and will be out for 4-5 weeks.
- Karen Guregian reports Tully Banta-Cain's surgery wasn't considered major and it went "outstanding," according to a source.
- Mike Reiss talks about Banta-Cain's surgery and his role on defense.
- Greg A. Bedard reports the Players Association executive committee is scheduled to meet today in D.C. to, hopefully, vote on an agreement.
- Mike Reiss breaks down the current Patriots roster by position and takes note of some of the club's bigger question marks.
- Christopher Price has a to-do list for the Patriots as soon as the lockout ends.
- Karen Guregian lists Bill Belichick's five main problems to solve right off the bat.
- Greg A. Bedard and Shalise Manza Young discuss five questions the Patriots will face once the lockout is lifted.
- Karen Guregian says there's two sides to NFL two-a-days.
- Mike Reiss targets some rookie free agents who could be on the team's radar.
- Mike Reiss offers some quick-hit thoughts from the Patriots and around the NFL.
- The Boston Herald looks at America's five longest sports work stoppages.
- Peter King (SI) MMQB: Making sense of the new CBA and how it will affect the game.
- John Clayton (ESPN) 2011 free agency: It's going to be wild.
- Rich Cimini (ESPN) Prepare for a chaotic week.
- Gregg Rosenthal (ProFootballTalk) There will be no "Hard Knocks" this year.
- Gene Wojciechowski (ESPN) Yes! Knucklehead season almost over.
- Adam Schefter (EPSN) Source: New timeline starts Monday.
- Adam Schefter (ESPN) Sources: Deal to end lockout reached.
- Sam Farmer (LA Times) First vote on labor deal by NFL players expected Monday.
- Gregg Rosenthal (ProFootballTalk) Report: Player reps flying to D.C. Sunday, final points reached.
- Gregg Rosenthal (ProFootballTalk) Seven things you may have missed in new CBA.
- Mike Florio (ProFootballTalk) Opt out clause still lingers.
- Mike Florio (ProFootballTalk) New CBA sets up eventual 18-game stare down.
- Mike Florio (ProFootballTalk) Source: Eller case could still screw up settlement.