Notes from the owners meetings: Kraft to speak

Notes from the owners meetings: Kraft to speak
March 18, 2013, 12:30 pm
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PHOENIX -- Odds and ends from the NFL Owners Meetings at the Biltmore in Phoenix.

  • Patriots owner Robert Kraft is planning to speak to the media on Monday around 3 p.m. Eastern. With agitation remaining over the way the Wes Welker's departure has been framed by Welker's agent David Dunn, expect Kraft to be glib about what went down last week.
  • On the docket for Monday is an address from NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell and a briefing from the NFL's Competition Committee on the proposed rules changes.
  • The Rams' signing of Jake Long on Sunday night should be the domino that falls and sends Sebastian Vollmer wherever the Patriots free agent tackle is bound for. Long got four years and $36 million with $20 million guaranteed. Vollmer won't be in that class financially but he can probably reasonably ask for something between $5 and $6 million. Suitors have been seemingly few for Vollmer but Miami, which lost Long, is said to be interested in bringing Vollmer in at right tackle and putting Johnathan Martin at left tackle.
  • The waiting game for the Pittsburgh Steelers continues with no offer yet tendered by the Patriots on RFA wide receiver Emmanuel Sanders. I spoke Sunday night to Steelers GM Kevin Colbert who said, "Good player..." when asked his impressions of Sanders. Sanders was originally a third-round pick out of SMU. He turned 27 on Sunday. If the Patriots sign him to an offer, the Steelers have a chance to match or will receive the Patriots third-round pick in exchange. Given the Steelers are over-the-barrel financially and the Patriots know that, New England is probably trying to entice Sanders to take something in the area of $3 million per season over three years (guesstimating). Sanders would then have to weigh whether he'll have a big 2013 on the tender - especially with Mike Wallace gone - and be in line for more money as a UFA or should he jump for the dough now.
  • The Patriots - and none of the four teams he's visited - have yet made a move on ex-Falcons defensive end John Abraham. I spoke to Falcons coach Mike Smith about Abraham Monday morning asking how he believed Abraham would fit in New England. "Depends what they want him to do," said Smith. Abraham played 25 to 30 snaps a game, said Smith. He can bring pass rush. At what cost? That's probably where the disconnect exists. If Aqib Talib is getting $5 million to be their shutdown corner, can Abraham make the same as a situational player at 34?
  • Kraft is also expected to be on with Mike Florio on Pro Football Talk Live on Tuesday from Phoenix.