New England Patriots Super Bowl Champs

Patriots and WR Julian Edelman Finalizing Two-Year Contract Extension

The Patriots are in the process of finalizing a contract extension with Julian Edelman, who was set to enter the final year of a deal that paid a base salary of $2 million, NFL Network’s Mike Garafolo reports via Herbie Teope of NFL.com.

Since entering the league in 2009 as an undrafted free agent out of Kent State with the Patriot, the 5-foot-10, 198-pound Edelman, who turns 33 on Wednesday, developed into one of the NFL’s most reliable weapons.

Edelman broke out in 2013 with 105 catches for 1,056 yards and six touchdowns on 151 targets, and has averaged 86 catches for 935.2 yards and 5.2 touchdowns on 128 targets over the past five seasons.

He has played a big role on three Super Bowl-winning teams, including capturing the MVP award in Super Bowl LIII’s win over the Los Angeles Rams. Edelman also produced one of the top championship-game circus catches in the Patriots’ comeback win over the Atlanta Falcons in Super Bowl LI.

Patriots OT Jared Veldheer Says He Intends to Retire from Football

Less than two weeks after it began, Jared Veldheer’s career in New England is over, Andrew Callahan of Masslive reports.

The 31-year-old offensive tackle told the team Tuesday he intends to retire, according to a report from ESPN’s Mike Reiss. After starting for the Broncos last season and all but five of his 118 career games, Veldheer agreed to terms with the Patriots on a free-agent contract on May 7. He projected as New England’s next swing tackle after LaAdrian Waddle left in free agency.

Veldheer’s contract was a 1-year deal worth up to $6.5 million, per reports. Tuesday marked the second day of the team’s OTAs.

Before he signed with the Patriots, Veldheer split his nine-year career over stints the Raiders, Cardinals and Broncos. He took snaps at both tackle spots, right guard and center. Veldheer’s departure leaves New England without a single offense tackle who boasts NFL experience, aside from starting right tackle Marcus Cannon.

Report States Patriots and Vikings Have Discussed Tight End Kyle Rudolph

The Vikings are currently locked in a contract dispute with veteran tight end Kyle Rudolph, a dispute that reportedly has caught the Patriots’ attention, Andrew Callahan of Masslive reports.

According to Albert Breer of The MMQB, New England has “talked with Minnesota about Kyle Rudolph,” amid its series of free-agent signings at the tight end position. The 29-year-old Rudolph is due $7.6 million this season from the cash-strapped Vikings. Minnesota drafted a tight end, Alabama’s Irv Smith, in the second round of this year’s draft.

The two sides were reportedly in extension talks until two weeks ago, at which point the possibility of trading him reopened. Rudolph, who intends to be present for the start of the Vikings’ OTAs on Tuesday, said he doesn’t want to be dealt. However, he also told reporters he’s “too young” to take a pay cut.

Rudolph caught 64 passes for 634 yards and four touchdowns last season. He’s earned two Pro Bowl nods — in 2012 and 2017 — over his eight-year career. His best statistical season was an 83-catch, 840-yard and seven-touchdown campaign in 2016.

Patriots Agree to Terms with DT Danny Shelton

The Patriots have reportedly come to terms on a new deal with 25-year-old run stopper Danny Shelton, a player who last season played in 13 games, starting one.

Shelton was credited with 21 tackles last season, including one tackle for loss.

Patriots Ink First-Round Pick N’Keal Harry to Rookie Deal

The Patriots have reached an agreement with their 2019 first-round pick, N’Keal Harry, on the terms of his rookie contract, Nick Goss of NBC Sports Boston reports.

ESPN’s Adam Schefter, citing a source, reported Tuesday the former Arizona State wide receiver and the Patriots have agreed to a four-year, $10,098,348 contract with a $5,364,252 signing bonus.

Third-round picks Chase Winovich and Damien Harris are the only players from the Patriots’ 2019 draft class still unsigned, per ESPN’s Mike Reiss.

Harry was selected by New England with the 32nd pick in the 2019 NFL Draft. He’s the first wide receiver drafted in the first round by Patriots head coach Bill Belichick since he took over the team in 2000.

Patriots Waive Slot Veteran Wide Out Bruce Ellington

The Patriots released veteran slot receiver Bruce Ellington on Wednesday, further thinning the depth at the position, Kevin Duff of the Boston Herald reports.

Ellington, who played for the Texans and Lions this past season, had been signed by the Pats during the opening week of free agency.

His release clears a roster spot for veteran offensive tackle Jared Veldheer, who is expected to sign later this week.

Following the Ellington move, New England’s receiver depth chart is led by Julian Edelman, Phillip Dorsett, rookie N’Keal Harry, second-year pro Braxton Berrios, and Maurice Harris.

Josh Gordon remains indefinitely suspended by the NFL. Demaryius Thomas could become a factor at some point, but he’s just over four months removed from an Achilles tear.

A shifty 5-foot-9 slot receiver, Ellington figured to be on the roster bubble in training camp. He caught 31 passes for 224 yards in the 2018 season.

Patriots Pick Up Arizona State WR N’Keal Harry with Pick 32 in the NFL Draft

The Patriots added a big target for Tom Brady at the end of round one of the 2019 NFL Draft, snagging Arizona State wide out N’Keal Harry with the 32nd pick of the draft.

Harry at 6’2, 228 pounds is a big target with good body control, and he consistently rewards his quarterback for throwing him 50-50 balls.

He doesn’t have an elite second gear, but his size-speed combination and ball skills make him a threat in the vertical passing game.

He flashes the ability to make the first defender miss and is an above-average threat after the catch for a player his size.

Patriots WR Josh Gordon Signs RFA Tender

Josh Gordon’s future in the NFL remains uncertain, but if he’s playing in 2019 it’ll be as a member of the Patriots, Kevin Duffy of the Boston Herald reports.

The talented receiver signed his restricted free-agent tender, according to the league transaction wire.

Gordon, who remains indefinitely suspended by the league, will earn $2.025 million on the one-year deal.

The 28-year-old Gordon emerged as a difference-maker with the Patriots a year ago, destroying defenses after the catch. He became the first New England receiver to average 18 yards per catch since David Patten in 2004. Gordon’s season was cut short in late December when he was suspended for violating the terms of his reinstatement under the league’s substance abuse policy.

The NFL has not yet announced if Gordon’s suspension will carry over into the 2019 season.