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New England Patriots links 2/27/20 - 2020 Combine, Franchise Tag window & “Brady’s gone” rumors open today

Daily news and links for Thursday

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New York Giants v New England Patriots Photo by Adam Glanzman/Getty Images


  • Evan Lazar’s Combine Notebook: CBA progress, Belichick’s pit stop, offensive line media day.
  • Deyscha Smith offers 5 bits of Patriots news to come from the combine: Bill Belichick was at Middle Tennessee State University, Dante Scarnecchia is helping out, and the team could be meeting with Tom Brady.
  • Michael Hurley offers a reminder of just how badly Bill Belichick loves football. “Clearly, Belichick isn not much one for resting on his laurels.”
  • Nick Goss reports how Bill Belichick went to Middle Tennessee State to scout a draft prospect.
  • Doug Kyed discusses the multiple factors affecting the Patriots approach to 2020 free agency.
  • Mike Reiss catches up with ‘Swiss army knife’ Kyle Van Noy who proved an ideal fit for a Patriots defense defined by multiplicity and ever-evolving game plans. Van Noy is wrapping his head around being an unrestricted free agent for the first time in his career, and the choices ahead.
  • Darren Hartwell hears from Nick Caserio on why he is on board with the new NFL Combine limitation on player interviews.
  • Andrew Callahan takes a look at which wide receivers the Patriots could target in the draft.
  • Ryan Hannable tells us which running backs stand out from Patriots perspective at the combine.
  • Andy Hart examines the centers at the combine.
  • Mark Daniels notes TE Thaddeus Moss would welcome a return to New England with the Patriots. He played a year of high school football in Rhode Island.
  • Doug Kyed profiles Kentucky’s Lynn Bowden Jr. “the toughest, most competitive player in the draft.”
  • Mark Daniels profiles URI OL Kyle Murphy, hoping to prove doubters wrong at the combine.
  • Karen Guregian wonders if the Bills, Jets and Dolphins believe the Patriots will finally lose their hold on the AFC East - with or without Tom Brady.
  • Ricky Doyle notes Mike Giardi asked around at the combine and learns exactly why Tom Brady’s free agency is complicated.
  • Scott McLaughlin highlights ESPN’s Jeff Darlington on “Get Up” that he would be “stunned” if Tom Brady stayed in New England.
  • CBS Boston reports Thursday’s Tom Brady updates are not great for those hoping he returns to the Patriots.
  • Alex Barth notes reports of Tom Brady’s possible departure are gaining strength. /Yet, actual news stays the same.
  • Lucy Burdge highlights Adam Schefter on WEEI: ‘I haven’t heard anything that makes me think (Tom Brady is) coming back’.
  • Karen Guregian examines Andy Dalton as a fallback plan for the Patriots. /Puh-leeze.
  • Michael Hurley ranks the shock value of potential Tom Brady destinations.
  • Adam London reports former Patriots executive Michael Lombardi seems to believe both the Titans and Raiders indeed plan on entering the Brady sweepstakes.
  • Ricky Doyle NFL Rumors: Did combine uncover three possible Tom Brady landing spots?
  • Ryan Hannable explains how URI became New England’s college football factory.
  • Adam London notes ESPN+ recently asked all 32 reporters for a “daring offseason move” for their teams. Patriots: Cutting ties with Devin McCourty to infuse youth at safety.
  • Nick O’Malley takes a look back at which Patriots had the fastest (and slowest) 40-yard dash times
  • Nicole Yang reports Tom Brady, Gisele Bündchen celebrate their 11th wedding anniversary, with pictures of where they first met.
  • Justin Leger posts the latest Instagram from Chase Winovich begging Tom Brady to stay in New England.
  • Christopher Price reports ex-Patriot Kevin Faulk has become the running backs coach at LSU. /Good for him!
  • Locked On Patriots podcast: Mike D’Abate is joined by Mark Schofield with an on-location report from the 2020 NFL scouting combine. (26 min.)
  • Patriots Beat podcast: Mike Petraglia talks with Evan Lazar coming at us live from Indy. (36 min.)


  • Joel Corry (CBS Sports) Agent’s Take: Franchise tag and transition tag salaries for each position, plus more to know on both tags.
  • Gregg Rosenthal ( [Updated] 2020 NFL franchise/transition tag primer: No-brainer candidates?
  • Staff (USA Today) How to watch NFL combine: Live stream, schedule, drills for quarterbacks and more on Thursday.
  • Rob Tornoe (Philadelphia Inquirer) Everything you need to know to watch and stream the NFL Scouting Combine
  • Anthony Treash and Ben Linsey (Pro Football Focus) 2020 NFL Scouting Combine: Notable quotes and analysis from Day 2.
  • Albert Breer (SI) The 17th game is clearly the focal point of the whole CBA; Plus MMQB Mailbag on Gurley, Tua, the XFL, Tom Brady’s future, and more.
  • Danny Heifetz (The Ringer) NFL Combine Takeaways, Day 3: CBA talk is overshadowing everything else. Plus: Tua looks to be healthy—could Washington be interested?
  • Chris Trapasso (CBS Sports) NFL combine 2020 results: A.J. Epenesa, Marlon Davidson winners as edge rushers and defensive linemen weigh in.
  • Gary Gramling (SI) Where do old QBs fit in the new NFL: As Mahomes and Lamar usher in a new age of offensive football, how do Brady, Rivers and Brees fit in an NFL they dominated for so long. /Hm... still about winning, isn’t it?
  • Josh Alper (ProFooballTalk) Report: Patriots haven’t reached out to Tom Brady yet.
  • Mike Chiari (Bleacher Report) Tom Brady Rumors: ‘Strong buzz’ QB will leave Patriots; ‘It’s not looking good’.
  • Michael David Smith (ProFootballTalk) Giants named as potential Tom Brady suitor.
  • Darin Gantt (ProFootballTalk) Chargers can’t get away from Tom Brady questions. /join the club.
  • Kalyn Kahler (SI) How much do teams care about marijuana-related incidents, given the CBA changes to the policy? /Now teams won’t have to publicly justify taking a risk on a player with those red flags.
  • Chris Trapasso (CBS Sports) 2020 NFL Mock Draft. Pats pick LSU S Grant Delpit.


  • The Boston Globe passes along a report from ‘league sources’ that the NFL is getting closer to wrapping up its investigation into the Patriots’ videotaping incident from December. /Molehill meets mountain.
  • Alex Barth highlights the speed in which both the NFL and MLB are crawling to the finish line of local investigations.
  • Alex Barth looks at the policy and wonders if the Patriots could charge the Buccaneers with tampering after Bruce Arians’ Tom Brady comments
  • Jenny Vrentas (SI) With differing views on proposed new CBA, players will vote via ‘democratic process’.
  • Mike Florio (ProFootballTalk) Executive Committee vote changes from 6-5 against to 7-4 against CBA proposal.
  • Jarrett Bell (USA Today) In CBA clash, NFL players facing class divide between big names and no-names.
  • Mike Florio (ProFootballTalk) Aaron Rodgers explains his opposition to proposed CBA.
  • Mike Florio (ProFootballTalk) Russell Wilson publicly opposes CBA.