Patriots release Gonzalez, sign three others

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Patriots release Gonzalez, sign three others

New England headlined some Tuesday afternoon action with the release of wide receiver Anthony Gonzalez.

The team is now down to 11 receivers on its active roster.

Gonzalez was signed to a one-year deal on March 17. The receiver had 99 career catches for 1,307 yards and seven touchdowns in five seasons with Indianapolis. His time there was pocked by injury; Gonzalez played just 11 games in the last three seasons. Upon his arrival in New England, he said the worst was behind him and he hoped to make his mark here.

Mini-camp is just two weeks away.

On the plus side, the Pats signed unrestricted free agent OL Jamey Richard, rookie free agent tight end Nick Melillo, and seventh-round draft pick defensive back Alfonzo Dennard.

Bringing in another TE for the meantime makes sense. Defensive end Alex Silvestro had to play the part during Thursday's OTA session as Rob Gronkowski is still physically limited and Daniel Fells was absent.

Melillo is a 6-foot-2, 226-pound rookie free agent out of Kentucky. He played 32 games, catching 23 passes for 240 yards and a touchdown while with the Wildcats.

Tom Curran wrote a great story about why Dennard's thought to be worth backing -- reportedly, to the tune of four years, 2.157 million.

Richard was brought in on Friday.

Brady hears from Manning and Favre on wins record, but not Goodell

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Brady hears from Manning and Favre on wins record, but not Goodell

The congratulatory messages rolled in for Tom Brady following win No. 201 on Sunday. He heard praise from his teammates and coach Bill Belichick and he received a game ball from Patriots owner Robert Kraft. Two of the guys he recently passed on the all-time wins list reached out as well.

Both Brett Favre (199 career wins) and Peyton Manning (200) touched base with the new record-holder after he surpassed the two retired quarterbacks in back-to-back weeks. 

Favre posted a video online to show his support for Brady, which Brady saw after a friend sent it his way, he told WEEI's Kirk and Callahan Show.

"We were in touch this week a few times just with a couple of things that we were talking about football-wise," Brady said of Favre. "We exchanged some text messages, too. He’s a great guy. He’s someone I’ve always looked up to . . . There’s nobody physically or mentally tougher than that guy and endured the streak that he had. It was incredible. I’ve always really looked up to him. It was really cool."

Manning checked in, as he's wont to do, with something a little more traditional.

"I did hear from Peyton. He's someone that I've always been in touch with for a long time. I've known him for 16 years. He sent me a very nice note," Brady said. "I have a lot of respect for him and all that he accomplished, too. He's a great guy. We share a lot of things in common and I just always appreciate him as well."

Kirk and Callahan co-host Gerry Callahan acknowledged that the NFL sent out a tweet recognizing Brady's achievement, but he wondered if Brady had heard anything from commissioner Roger Goodell. Brady laughed when he heard the question initially. When he didn't respond at first, Callahan circled up again.

"I don't hear anything from the league," Brady said.