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 »This Week in History

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 Latest Patriots Player Notes
Apr 24 2017 - Mike Gillislee
  RB Mike Gillislee signed with the New England Patriots on Monday after the Buffalo Bills decided not to match the two-year contract offer. Gillislee received a fifth-round tender as a restricted free agent, and the Bills will receive the Patriots' pick in that round of the NFL draft, No. 163 overall. A fifth-round pick in 2013, Gillislee rushed for 577 yards and eight touchdowns on 101 carries last season as LeSean McCoy's backup in Buffalo.

Apr 18 2017 - Matt Lengel
  TE Matt Lengel signed with the New England Patriots after being an exclusive rights free agent. Lengel, 26, was signed by the Patriots to the 53-man roster from the Cincinnati Bengals practice squad on Nov. 2, 2016. Lengel played in six games with the Patriots in the regular season and all three postseason games, including Super Bowl LI. He finished the regular season with two receptions for 22 yards.

Apr 18 2017 - Malcolm Butler
  CB Malcolm Butler signed his tender with the New England Patriots, the team announced Tuesday. The tender was at the first-round level and carries a salary of $3.91 million for the 2017 season, according to ESPN. Butler was a restricted free agent. Butler, 27, has played in 43 regular season games with 33 starts, including starts in all 16 games over the last two seasons. He has six interceptions and 35 passes defensed. He has played in eight postseason games with five starts, and he had an interception at the goal-line that secured the win over Seattle in Super Bowl XLIX. Butler was named to the Pro Bowl following the 2015 season.

Mar 31 2017 - Tom Brady
  QB Tom Brady was set to receive a $14 million deferred signing bonus on Friday as part of the contract extension he signed in 2016 with the Patriots. Brady's deal called for a signing bonus of $28 million, split into two $14 million payments. He received the first installment when he signed the extension. His 2017 salary will be at the bargain price of just $1 million.

Mar 17 2017 - Justin Coleman
  CB Justin Coleman, an exclusive rights free agent, signed his contract with the Patriots. Coleman, 23, originally entered the NFL as a rookie free agent with the Vikings out of Tennessee on May 6, 2015. The 5-11, 190-pound Coleman played in 20 games with three starts over the last two seasons with the Patriots, recording 29 total tackles, eight passes defensed and one fumble recovery.

Mar 15 2017 - Dont'a Hightower
  LB Dont'a Hightower agreed on a four-year, $43.5 million deal to return to the New England Patriots. The contract also includes $19 million in guaranteed money, Hightower's agency, Sports Trust Advisors, announced Wednesday on Twitter. Hightower, 27, was being coveted during free agency by multiple other teams, including the Steelers and Jets, before the Patriots picked up the fifth-year option of the five-year contract he had signed as a rookie. He recorded 65 tackles and 2.5 sacks last season.

Mar 14 2017 - Rex Burkhead
  RB Rex Burkhead sined with the New England Patriots on Tuesday. urkhead spent his first four NFL seasons with the Cincinnati Bengals before becoming an unrestricted free agent earlier this month. Burkhead opened eyes by rushing for 119 yards and two touchdowns on 27 carries in Cincinnati's season-ending 27-10 victory over the Baltimore Ravens.

Mar 11 2017 - Lawrence Guy
  DL Lawrence Guy signed a four-year contract with the Patriots on Saturday, according to published reports. Guy, who is five days shy of his 27th birthday, signed a deal worth a reported $20 million, according to Ian Rapoport of the NFL Network. The 6-foot-4, 305-pound Guy spent the majority of the last three seasons with the Baltimore Ravens, appearing in all 16 games in each of the past two years and starting a career-high 10 in 2016. Guy had 28 tackles and one sack last season after registering career highs in both categories in 2015 with 46 and 4.5, respectively. A seventh-round draft pick out of Arizona State in 2011, Guy spent parts of two seasons with the Indianapolis Colts and San Diego Chargers before landing with the Ravens.

Mar 10 2017 - Kony Ealy
  DE Kony Ealy was traded by the Carolina Panthers, along with a third-round draft pick, to the New England Patriots for a second-round draft choice, ESPN reported Friday. Ealy became expendable when the Panthers re-acquired defensive end/outside linebacker Julius Peppers, who played the last three seasons for the Green Bay Packers. Ealy's best game came in Super Bowl 50 against the Denver Broncos following the 2015 season. He posted three sacks and a forced fumble in that game and might have been the MVP if the Panthers had won. He had five sacks in 16 games, including nine starts, during the 2015 regular season, and had five sacks in 16 games, including six starts, in 2016.

Mar 10 2017 - Stephon Gilmore
  CB Stephon Gilmore is expected to sign a five-year, $65 million deal with the Patriots, with $40 million guaranteed. Gilmore reeled in a pair of interceptions in Week 11 against Cincinnati and finished with a career-high five picks to go along with 48 tackles last season. He has 14 interceptions in his career since being selected with the 10th overall pick by Buffalo in the 2012 draft.

Mar 10 2017 - Malcolm Butler
  CB Malcolm Butler might be traded from the Patriots to the Saints for WR Brandin Cooks, according to multiple reports on Thursday. Butler is a restricted free agent whom New England tendered at $3.91 million earlier this week. Talks toward a long-term deal haven't been fruitful. The 27-year-old has been a fan favorite since intercepting Seattle's Russell Wilson at the goal line to clinch the Patriots' victory in Super Bowl XLIX following the 2014 campaign.

Mar 9 2017 - Alan Branch
  DT Alan Branch is finalizing a two-year deal to remain with New England. The NFL Network reports the deal is worth close to $12 million. The 32-year-old Branch had 49 tackles and 1.5 sacks in 2016. He has started 32 games with the Patriots over the past three seasons. The 10-year veteran played with the Arizona Cardinals for his first four seasons. He spent two seasons with the Seattle Seahawks and one with the Buffalo Bills before joining the Patriots.

Mar 9 2017 - Dwayne Allen
  TE Dwayne Allen is on the move after the Patriots and Colts agreed to a trade on Wednesday. New England is sending its fourth-round pick in the 2017 draft to Indianapolis, which packaged a sixth-round pick in April with Allen to complete the deal. Allen signed a four-year, $29.4 million deal last spring to remain with the Colts, but the former third-round pick (2012) was made expendable due to the emergence of Jack Doyle in 2016. Doyle signed a contract with the Colts last week.

Mar 7 2017 - Mike Gillislee
  RB Mike Gillislee was tendered a qualifying offer by the Bills, making him a restricted free agent. Gillislee rushed for 577 yards and eight touchdowns last season. His average of 5.71 yards per carry (on 101 attempts) led the NFL. Gillislee has 844 rushing yards in two seasons with the Bills. He was originally a fifth-round pick in 2013 by the Dolphins.

Mar 6 2017 - James Develin
  FB James Develin agreed to a two-year contract just ahead of free agency. Develin, an impending unrestricted free agent, was one of the lead blockers last season for LeGarrette Blount, who had 1,161 rushing yards and a franchise-record 18 rushing touchdowns. Develin, 28, has been with the Patriots since 2012, playing in every game in three of the last four seasons. He missed the 2015 season with a broken leg suffered in training camp.

Mar 2 2017 - Stephon Gilmore
  CB Stephon Gilmore is expected to enter unrestricted free agency next week adter the Bills decided not to use the franchise tag on him. With the salary cap now officially set at $167 million, the franchise tag would have meant the Bills would have to pay Gilmore $14.2 million in 2017, and then hope to work out a long-term deal by July 15 to lessen the salary cap hit for this year.

Feb 28 2017 - Dont'a Hightower
  LB Dont'a Hightower will become a free agent on March 9 as the New England Patriots reportedly passed on using the franchise tag on him. The Super Bowl hero could still return to the Patriots but ESPN reported that Hightower is intent on testing the free-agent market. Hightower earned $7.751 in 2016 during his fifth NFL season. The franchise tag is expected to be worth approximately $14.7 million. The Patriots can negotiate with Hightower until March 7. Hightower's fourth-quarter strip sack of Atlanta Falcons quarterback in Super Bowl LI was one of the biggest plays as the Patriots rallied from a 25-point comeback to win the contest. Hightower, who turns 27 on March 12, had 65 tackles and 2.5 sacks last season. He has 404 tackles and 17 sacks in his career.

Feb 24 2017 - Rob Gronkowski
  TE Rob Gronkowski says there is "no doubt" he will be ready for the start of the 2017 season with the Patriots despite undergoing the third back surgery of his career. "Yes, for sure," Gronkowski told ESPN when asked if he expects to play in Week 1. "No doubt." Gronkowski, who underwent season-ending back surgery in December, played only eight games during the 2016 season after missing time earlier in the season with a hamstring injury and bruised lung.

Feb 17 2017 - Michael Floyd
  WR Michael Floyd pleaded guilty to extreme DUI and was sentenced to jail in a criminal case related to his December arrest in Scottsdale, Ariz. The Arizona Cardinals released Floyd on Dec. 14 -- two days after his drunk-driving arrest in which police said he had a blood-alcohol level of .217. Floyd, 27, faced seven charges but the other six were dropped on Thursday when he entered a guilty plea and began his sentence, according to court documents. He will spend 24 days in Maricopa County (Ariz.) Jail and another 96 days on house arrest. Floyd also will be required to complete 30 hours of community service, attend alcohol abuse classes and pay a fine of $5,115.99 as part of his plea.

Feb 16 2017 - Tom Brady
  QB Tom Brady and the New England Patriots are discussing a contract extension. The 39-year-old is signed through the 2019 season and has a cap hit of $14 million in 2017 and $22 million in both 2018 and 2019, the Boston Herald reported. Brady will be 42 when his current contract expires. On Sunday, he told Peter King of MMQB.com that he would like to play well into his 40s.

Feb 13 2017 - Tom Brady
  QB Tom Brady says his record-setting performance in Super Bowl LI wasn't his best game ever despite the historic 25-point rally. Brady threw for a Super Bowl-record 466 yards, two touchdowns and one interception in a 34-28 victory in overtime to win his fifth championship ring and record fourth Super Bowl MVP Award. He broke, tied or extended nine Super Bowl records. "I don't really think that is necessarily the case," Brady told TheMMQB.com's Peter King, citing a pick-six as one of the reasons.

Feb 10 2017 - James White
  RB James White, one of the stars of Super Bowl LI, finally received a truck for his record-breaking performance, courtesy of late-night talk show host Conan O'Brien and Ford. Quarterback Tom Brady, who gave his MVP truck from Super Bowl XLIX to cornerback Malcolm Butler as a way of saying thanks for his game-saving interception against Seattle Seahawks, said after last Sunday's win over the Atlanta Falcons that White deserved the honor. However, since that championship game in 2015, the Super Bowl MVP no longer receives a truck. Brady won his fourth Super Bowl MVP after guiding the Patriots to 31 unanswered points in an astounding, come-from-behind 34-28 overtime victory against the Falcons. Brady completed 43 of 62 passes for 466 yards and two touchdowns. The Patriots' eight-play, 75-yard drive in overtime ended with White's game-ending, 2-yard touchdown run. In all, White carried six times for 28 yards and two scores to go with a Super Bowl-record 14 catches for 110 yards and a touchdown. The 25-year-old White's three touchdowns and one two-point conversion totaled a record-setting 20 points in the Super Bowl.

Feb 7 2017 - James White
  RB James White not only had the production to be a Super Bowl MVP candidate, but the support of the man who actually earned the honor. White caught 14 passes for 110 yards, both game highs, with one touchdown. He also rushed six times for 29 yards and two touchdowns, including the game-winner. White added a key two-point conversion in New England's 25-point comeback to help make up for a prior missed PAT by kicker Stephen Gostkowski. Tom Brady won the MVP award for the fourth time in his career, but as he did back in Super Bowl XLIX when Malcolm Butler could have earned the award with his game-saving interception, the quarterback passed plenty of praise along to his key teammate. "I think James White deserves it. It'll be nice for him," Brady said, giving the truck that comes with the MVP award to his running back teammate as he did with Butler two years earlier. "It's just a great performance by him when we needed it the most on the biggest stage and he really came through for us."

Feb 7 2017 - Julian Edelman
  WR Julian Edelman made a crazy, circus catch for a 23-yard gain in the middle of the field on the way to New England's game-tying touchdown and two-point conversion in the fourth quarter. Forget past Super Bowl circus-catch miseries of David Tyree or Mario Manningham. Forget, even, a Julio Jones sensational sideline grab earlier in the fourth quarter of this Super Bowl battle that appeared to put the Falcons in position to ice the game. The soon-to-be four-time Super Bowl MVP tried to hit Edelman crossing the field. The pass deflected off rookie Atlanta safety Keanu Neal and into the air, falling into a mess of bodies that included Edelman and multiple Falcons. Breath was held on both sidelines and throughout each team's global fandom. When the dust settled, officials ruled Edelman had caught the ball after all, for 23 yards to the Falcons 41. It was both unbelievable and appropriate at the same time. Edelman had been slumping through a series of drops and incompletions. But with the Super Bowl on the line, as he's done in the past, he somehow hauled it in. Replay review at the behest of Falcons coach Dan Quinn verified that Edelman had, indeed, made the unfathomable catch. The ball was clearly in his grip while also trapped against the leg of a Falcons defender, keeping it from hitting the ground. "I knew I had it. I felt like I got it," Edelman recalled. "I couldn't believe it," Tom Brady said, noting history. "One of the greatest catches. We've been on the other end of those." "I don't know," Edelman said behind a bearded smirk when asked if it was the best catch he's ever made. "It was only good if we won the game. Thankfully we won the game." "One of the greatest catches I've ever seen," Brady added. "I don't know how he caught it. I don't think he does."

Feb 7 2017 - Tom Brady
  QB Tom Brady took home his record fourth Super Bowl MVP honor as he became the first quarterback to lead his team to five Lombardi Trophies. It put the wrap on a unique season that opened with the future Hall of Famer serving a four-game NFL suspension in the aftermath of the two-year Deflategate saga. The morning after guiding the Patriots to the record 25-point comeback for the overtime 34-28 win over the Falcons, Brady was on stage with NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell to accept the MVP trophy. While many New England fans hoped Brady might use the spotlight to lash out at the perceived injustice of his suspension, the quarterback unsurprisingly took the high road, as did Goodell. "We just had an extraordinary week here in Houston capped by maybe one of the greatest games of all time," Goodell said to open the MVP press conference. "The two gentlemen that we have here have set new bars across the league. Five Super Bowl Championships and four MVPs for Tom Brady, cementing his legacy as not just a great Super Bowl performer, maybe one of the greatest players all time. And this duo, Coach (Bill) Belichick with his success of five Super Bowls, cementing his legacy as perhaps the best coach of all time. It's a great honor for us, and for me personally, to have both of these guys here this morning. Tom, come on up and get your trophy."

Feb 7 2017 - Michael Floyd
  WR Michael Floyd was a healthy scratch for Super Bowl LI, inactive for the second straight postseason game after playing in just three games overall -- the final two regular-season contests and the divisional round against Houston -- after joining the team off waivers from the Cardinals.

Feb 7 2017 - Jacoby Brissett
  QB Jacoby Brissett was inactive against Atlanta, though the rookie quarterback and the rest of the team's inactives were in full dress for pregame warmups in order to experience the Super Bowl experience as best they could.

Feb 7 2017 - Justin Coleman
  DB Justin Coleman was a healthy scratch for the final game of the year.

Feb 7 2017 - Cyrus Jones
  CB Cyrus Jones closed out his disappointing rookie season as a healthy scratch for Super Bowl LI, though he was among the group of inactives in full pads who took part in pregame warmups.

Feb 7 2017 - D.J. Foster
  RB D.J. Foster was a healthy scratch for Super Bowl LI.

Feb 7 2017 - Jordan Richards
  S Jordan Richards was once again a healthy scratch, a disappointing end to the year for the second year former second-round pick.

Feb 7 2017 - LaAdrian Waddle
  OL LaAdrian Waddle was his usual healthy scratch for the final game of the year.

Feb 7 2017 - Dion Lewis
  RB Dion Lewis left the fourth quarter of Super Bowl LI with a hamstring injury and did not take part in overtime.

Feb 5 2017 - Trey Flowers
  DE Trey Flowers recorded 2.5 sacks of Falcons QB Matt Ryan in the Super Bowl, one of them a key play that helped knock Atlanta out of field-goal range in the fourth quarter.

Feb 5 2017 - Julian Edelman
  WR Julian Edelman made a potentially game-saving catch on the Patriots' game-tying drive in the Super Bowl. He was on the ground to grab a tipped pass. Edelman cradled the ball against a defender's leg and gained 23 yards. "That was one of the greatest catches I've ever seen," Patriots QB Tom Brady said of the Edelman grab. "I don't know how he caught it. I don't think he does."

Feb 5 2017 - James White
  RB James White's Super Bowl-record-tying third TD of the game was a 2-yard overtime run that gave New England the title over Atlanta. White also scored a two-point conversion, and his 20 points were a Super Bowl record. White caught a Super Bowl-record 14 passes (for 110 yards), and he added 29 yards on six rushes.

Feb 5 2017 - Tom Brady
  QB Tom Brady set Super Bowl records for passes (62), completions (43) and passing yards (466) en route to his record fourth Super Bowl MVP. He guided the Patriots from a 25-point deficit to an overtime win against the Falcons, throwing two touchdown passes and one interception.

Feb 3 2017 - Nate Ebner
  S Nate Ebner, the special teams ace who is returning from a concussion, again worked in a red jersey that signals the need to avoid contact Thursday. That Ebner was back on the field after returning to practice Wednesday was a positive sign as he seeks final clearance from the concussion protocol. Said coach Bill Belichick: "I expect him to be ready to play in the game."

Feb 2 2017 - Nate Ebner
  DB Nate Ebner (concussion) was a limited participant in practice Wednesday. He suffered the injury vs. Pittsburgh in the AFC title game. The member of the U.S. Olympic Rugby Team suffered two concussions this season.

Feb 2 2017 - Malcolm Mitchell
  WR Malcolm Mitchell (knee) was a limited participant in practice Wednesday. He missed the season finale and the first playoff game with the injury but returned to play in the AFC title game.

Feb 2 2017 - Dont'a Hightower
  LB Dont'a Hightower (shoulder) was a limited participant in practice Wednesday.

Feb 2 2017 - Chris Hogan
  WR Chris Hogan (thigh) was a limited participant in practice Wednesday. Hogan enjoyed a career receiving game against Pittsburgh in the AFC title game catching nine passes for a club-playoff-record 180 yards and two touchdowns.

Feb 2 2017 - Alan Branch
  DT Alan Branch (toe) was a limited participant in practice Wednesday.

Feb 2 2017 - Martellus Bennett
  TE Martellus Bennett (knee) was a limited participant in practice Wednesday. He was injured in the second half of the playoff win over the Texans.

Feb 2 2017 - Tom Brady
  QB Tom Brady said he is hopeful his entire family is able to make it to Sunday's Super Bowl matchup against the Atlanta Falcons. The three-time Super Bowl MVP's mother, Gayle, has been ill for 18 months and has not seen Brady play in person this season. "I'm hoping everyone can make it. I'm hoping she can be here," Brady said.

Jan 26 2017 - Stephen Gostkowski
  K Stephen Gostkowski missed practice due to illness on Thursday. Gostkowski set the all-time record for extra points in the playoffs in last week's AFC Championship game victory over the Pittsburgh Steelers. The Patriots are not traveling to Houston for Super Bowl LI until Monday, giving Gostkowski time to recover. New England practiced on its outdoor fields Thursday for the first time since the AFC title game. Gostkowski passed former Patriots kicker Adam Vinatieri with his 67th extra point in the playoffs. Gostkowski replaced Vinatieri in 2006.

Jan 23 2017 - Nate Ebner
  S Nate Ebner left the second half of the win over the Steelers with a head injury and did not return. Ebner also plays on special teams.

Jan 23 2017 - LaAdrian Waddle
  T LaAdrian Waddle was a healthy scratch for the AFC title game, sitting out for the second straight postseason week. The veteran backup was inactive 14 times during the regular season.

Jan 23 2017 - Jordan Richards
  S Jordan Richards was a healthy scratch against Pittsburgh, missing his second straight postseason game. The disappointing former second-round pick was inactive five times in the regular season, though he did deal with a knee injury late in the year.

Jan 23 2017 - D.J. Foster
  RB D.J. Foster was a healthy scratch against Pittsburgh, sitting out his second straight postseason game. The undrafted rookie was inactive 13 times during the regular season.

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