FOXBORO -- Last week, Bill Belichick lauded Aqib Talib's work as a player and employee since Talib joined the Patriots in November.
But Belichick was steadfast about not entertaining case-by-case questions on which players he'd like to have back in 2013.
Talib and Wes Welker are two prominent players with expiring contracts. Belichick addressed their status, saying, "I would not make any decisions on any players into the future now. I just can't do it. There are too many factors, too many unknown things. All of the things I said about Aqib I meant and I still feel that way. Nothing has changed but I can't put unto place an entire plan for the team at this point in time. There's not enough information. It's too early.
"As much as you want to just go case-by-case and list each guy, what his deal is, there is some of that, no question," he acknowledged. "But at the same time, when you're trying to put together a team, you've got to look at the entire team before you just say, 'OK, well, we want to try to keep this guy. Well, we don't want to keep this guy. We Want to try to get somebody else or whatever.'
"You've got to look at the entire context and not just take it one guy, piece by piece," he concluded. "I don't think that's the way you put together an entire football team. You've got to see the big picture and how it all fits together."
With New England Patriots organized workouts finished until next month, Phil Perry puts together another 53-man roster projection.
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When the topic of Deflategate was broached on HBO's Any Given Wednesday with Bill Simmons, which debuted this week, Ben Affleck became all kinds of fired up.
"What they did was suspend Tom Brady for four days for not giving them his [expletive] cellphone," Affleck said. "I would never give an organization as leak-prone as the NFL my [expletive] cellphone . . . so you can just look through my emails and listen to my voicemails?"
Affleck grew up in Cambridge, Mass. and is a passionate Patriots fan. He made no attempts to hide his fandom, and his appreciation for Brady, as he and Simmons (also a Patriots fan) discussed the football-deflation controversy that has now lasted well over a year.
Affleck, who said he would want to cast himself as Brady if ever a Deflategate movie was made, harped on the fact that the league wanted Brady to turn over his phone.
"Maybe Tom Brady is so [expletive] classy and such a [expletive] gentleman," Affleck said, "that he doesn’t want people to know that he may have reflected on his real opinion on some of his co-workers."
Brady is waiting for the Second Circuit to make a decision as to whether or not it will rehear his case against the NFL. Earlier this offseason, the Second Circuit reinstated Brady's four-game suspension issued by the league when a three-judge panel ruled in favor of the NFL, 2-1.
Pro Football Talk wrote on Thursday that a decision from the Second Circuit could come at any time. If the rehearding request is denied, Brady could then take the case to the Supreme Court. Should the Second Circuit grant Brady a rehearing, his suspension would be delaed until the court reached a decision. In that case, Brady could potentially play the entire 2016 season before a decision came to pass.