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Hightower Patriots

Patriots star Dont’a Hightower opts out of season, joins 5 other teammates sitting out over health fears – Fox News

Bill Belichick already had his work cut out for him this season in dealing with the absence of Tom Brady but on Tuesday, a total of six New England Patriots had reportedly chose to opt out of the season, including three-time Super Bowl champion Dont’a Hightower.

Sources told ESPN that the 30-year-old inside linebacker is planning to opt-out of the season amid pandemic fears. He told the NFL Network on Tuesday that his biggest concern is his newborn child.

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“Me and my fiancée are just more concerned with the health of our family than football — especially the new addition to our family,” he said of his 2-week-old son.

A three-time Super Bowl champ and a two-time Pro Bowler, Hightower being absent will surely be noticeable. He joins five other teammates who have decided to opt out, including Brandon Bolden, Patrick Chung, Marcus Cannon, Danny Vitale and Najee Toran.

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Hightower is going into the final year of his contract and he was set to earn a base salary of $8 million, ESPN reported. But with the opt-out clause, he will only earn $150,000. An agreement with the league and the NFLPA will offer a $350,000 stipend to players who opt out but are considered high-risk.

Kansas City Chiefs’ Laurent Duvernay-Tardif was the first NFL player to opt out of the season, saying Friday that he doesn’t want to risk transmitting the virus just “to play the sport that I love.”

“This is one of the most difficult decisions I have had to make in my life but I must follow my convictions and do what I believe is right for me personally,” his statement read. “I cannot allow myself to potentially transmit the virus in our communities simply to play the sport that I love. If I am to take risks, I will do it caring for patients.”

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Since then a number of players have opted out. As the number continues to grow, there is serious concern about how the season will be impacted.

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Julian Patriots

Patriots’ Julian Edelman offers to take DeSean Jackson to Holocaust Museum following anti-Semitic posts – Fox News

New England Patriots star Julian Edelman addressed DeSean Jackson’s anti-Semitic social media posts on Thursday and offered to take the Philadelphia Eagles wide receiver to the U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum in Washington, D.C.

Edelman is one of the few Jewish players in the NFL. He expressed his thoughts in a video posted to his Instagram.

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“I have seen DeSean play in his career, make outstanding football plays, communicated over social media,” Edelman said. “I have nothing but respect for his game. I know he said some ugly things, but I do see an opportunity to have a conversation.

“I am proud of my Jewish heritage. For me, it is not just about religion. It is about community and culture as well. I am unusual because I didn’t identify as Jewish until later in my life. Whenever I encountered hatred, it never really felt like it was aimed at me. It was only after I was part of this community that I learned how destructive hate is. Anti-Semitism is one of the oldest forms of hatred. It’s rooted in ignorance and fear.”

Edelman said he was called an anti-Semitic term on the football field in 2011 and said there was “no room” for that in the sport. He said he didn’t want to distract from the Black Lives Matter movement but also said both the Black and Jewish communities share some similarities.

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“One, an unfortunate similarity is that they are both attacked by the ignorant and the hateful. It’s really hard to see the challenges a community can face when you’re not a part of it. So what we need to do is, we need to listen. We need to learn. And we need to act. We need to have these uncomfortable conversations if we’re going to have real change,” he added.

“So to that end, DeSean, let’s do a deal. How about we go to DC and I take you to the Holocaust museum and then you take me to the museum of African American History and Culture. Afterwards, we’ll grab some burgers and we have those uncomfortable conversations.”

Earlier this week, Jackson posted a passage from a book falsely attributed to Adolf Hitler. He also praised Louis Farrakhan in two other Instagram posts. Those items have since-been deleted.

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Jackson has apologized twice for the posts.

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offense Patriots

What will the Patriots’ offense look like with Cam Newton at quarterback? | SC with SVP – ESPN

What will the Patriots’ offense look like with Cam Newton at quarterback? | SC with SVP – ESPN
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Draft Patriots

Patriots draft pick Justin Rohrwasser vows to remove tattoo associated with controversial group – Fox News

New England Patriots draft pick Justin Rohrwasser said Monday he is going to remove a tattoo associated with a so-called anti-government group.

Rohrwasser told CBS Boston the tattoo, linked to The Three Percenters, doesn’t represent who he is and that he got it when he was 18. He said he didn’t know what the ink symbolized before he got drafted over the weekend.

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“I went on to Twitter and I saw the tweet. I saw that someone had taken a picture of me and put it with my tattoo and linking me to some horrific events, you know, obviously Charlottesville and these horrible things,” he told the station, adding that it never came up when he played at Marshall University.

Rohrwasser initially said he was going to cover up the tattoo, but changed course over the last few days.

“As soon as I saw what it was linked to on Saturday, it was exactly that time I knew I had to get it totally taken off my body. I said cover it up [to reporters], but I want to get it removed from my body. It’s shameful that I had it on there ignorantly,” he said.

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Justin Rohrwasser was taken in the fifth round on Saturday. (Photo by Tim Warner/Getty Images)

Justin Rohrwasser was taken in the fifth round on Saturday. (Photo by Tim Warner/Getty Images)

“I’m sorry for all my [friends and] family that have to defend me. Putting them in that compromising position is one of the biggest regrets I’ll ever have, so to them, I’m sorry. I’m going to learn from this. No matter what, it’s not who I am, hopefully you’ll all find that out.”

Last year, Rohrwasser’s told The Herd Zone his tattoos were “all random.”

Rohrwasser, a fifth-round draft pick, said Saturday the Patriots are getting a guy who is a “hard worker and somebody who is going to chase after the best version of themselves and a good teammate.”

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He hit 85.7 percent of his field goals last season at Marshall.

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Newton Patriots

Cam Newton and Patriots are perfect match that might not happen – New York Post

April 28, 2020 | 11:12am | Updated April 28, 2020 | 11:15am

Could Cam Newton really be headed to New England? Oddsmakers seem to think so.

One sports book, PointsBet, has moved the odds of a Patriots-Newton marriage to the heavy favorites at -190, despite unwavering reports of the team’s disinterest in the 2015 NFL MVP.

Jeff Howe of The Athletic wrote on March 24 that “it doesn’t appear the Patriots have any immediate interest in adding [Newton],” and reiterated that stance on Monday.

“FYI nothing has changed here. The Patriots haven’t shown any interest in signing Cam Newton, per source,” Howe tweeted.

After the Panthers dumped him for Teddy Bridgewater this offseason, Newton remains the last big-name unsigned quarterback in a seemingly dead market. Jameis Winston is expected to sign with the Saints and is the most recent QB domino to fall. The Dolphins and Chargers were long-shot landing spots until they drafted Tua Tagovailoa and Justin Herbert, respectively, with back-to-back picks in the first round of the 2020 NFL Draft.

The Patriots’ quarterback situation remains unresolved after their breakup with Tom Brady after 20 years. Unable to pursue one of the prominent free agent options due to salary cap limitations, the team signed two undrafted quarterbacks this weekend — Michigan State’s Brian Lewerke and Louisiana Tech’s J’Mar Smith — after not selecting a high-profile prospect as many expected.

Former Carolina Panthers quarterback Cam Newton
Former Carolina Panthers quarterback Cam NewtonGetty Images

Their bloated cast of backup-caliber signal-callers is now comprised of 2019 fourth-rounder Jarrett Stidham, journeyman Brian Hoyer, Lewerke and Smith.

Stidham is the frontrunner of their rag-tag depth chart, but the 23-year-old is considered very much an unfinished product. He appeared in three games last year in mop-up duty, and completed two-of-four attempts for 14 yards, zero touchdowns and one interception.

Newton, 31, won the Heisman Trophy and was selected No. 1 overall in the 2010 NFL Draft out of Auburn. His NFL career has been marred by injuries, however, the most recent of which a Lisfranc injury he suffered in the 2019 preseason which sidelined him for most of the regular season leading up to his release.

With NFL physicals suspended in the wake of the coronavirus pandemic, Newton poses an even bigger risk to prospective teams, who are unable to assess him in person.

PointsBet lists seven potential teams other than the Patriots for Newton.

— Jaguars +300: The Jaguars are an intriguing landing spot for Newton if they still have lingering doubts over  2019 sixth-rounder Gardner Minshew.

— Steelers +700: The Steelers are also an interesting prospective team in light of 38-year-old Ben Roethlisberger’s health.

— Broncos +1000: Even John Elway remains uncertain if 2019 second-round pick Drew Lock can be a franchise quarterback.

— Bears +1100: It’s doubtful Newton ends up in Chicago after the team traded for Nick Foles this offseason and with Mitch Trubisky rostered.

— Redskins +1500: A reunion with Ron Rivera seems unlikely, especially after the team acquired former Panthers backup Kyle Allen instead of Newton to back up 2019 first-rounder Dwayne Haskins.

— Raiders +1500: The Raiders already signed an expensive backup for Derek Carr in adding 2015 No. 2 overall pick Marcus Mariota.

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