NFL deal 'not close' but calendar driving urgency

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NFL deal 'not close' but calendar driving urgency

By Tom E.Curran
CSNNE.com PatriotsInsider Follow@tomecurran FOXBORO - A source close to negotiations told me Thursday night that players and owners are "not close" to ending the NFL lockout but that "good progress" has been made. That jives well with the comments earlier Thursday by Patriots owner Robert Kraft who acknowledged progress as well but cautioned, "It would be misleading to say anything that would not make it crystal clear that there's a lot of hard work still to be done."The fact that we're into June and that training camps and the preseason are now in some jeopardy seems to be a motivating force. "I want football back," Kraft said. "I think we're getting close to having to put this thing to bed so we don't miss any events. I know that's the intent on both sides. ... The good news is, we're talking. I think we went 34 days without talking and the lawyers on each side were doing stuff. That, to me, isn't progress." One of the looming post-lockout issues to be confronted is how free agency will be initiated when this is all over. Does free agency begin immediately? Is there a short grace period? "There are people discussing this but this is part of how we do this and that's something I'm going to let the league office speak about," answered Kraft when asked aboutfree agency's start.While it hasn't yielded an agreement, the two rounds of talks without litigators have significantly changed the tenor of these negotiations -- as Kraft insisted all along they would."We've had the head of the union and five players and a mix of different owners and the commissioner all focused on the issues and what's good for the game and trying to solve that and I think that's positive," he pointed out. "I hope progress keeps happening . . . The good news is both sides care about the health of this game long term. That's our sole focus. Building on that is very positive." Tom E. Curran canbe reached at tcurran@comcastsportsnet.com.Follow Tom on Twitter at http:twitter.comtomecurran

Police report values Brady's stolen jersey at $500,000

Police report values Brady's stolen jersey at $500,000

TMZ got a hold of the Houston Police Department’s report for the theft of Tom Brady’s Super Bowl LI jersey. In it, Brady’s jersey, which went missing in the locker room following the Patriots’ comeback win over the Falcons, is valued at $500,000. 

Some highlights from the police report:

- The item is listed as a “Shirt/Blouse/T-Shirt.” 

- The theft is marked as not being a hate crime. 

- Maybe this was filled out in a rush, but there were some real struggles with apostrophes. Twice in the summary, the Patriots are referred to as “the Patriot’s.” In the second occurrence, “Patriots’” is written as “Patriot’s.” Weird. 

Following is the summary and below is the report, per TMZ:  

On 2/05/17, the City of Houston hosted Super Bowl LI in the NRG Stadium. Shortly after winning the game, New England Patriot’s quarterback Tom Brady noticed his game jersey missing from his locker in the Patriot’s designated locker room. 

Belichick changes the name of his boat to 'VII Rings'

Belichick changes the name of his boat to 'VII Rings'

That didn't take long. A couple weeks after his team beat the Falcons in Super Bowl LI, Bill Belichick's boat was spotted bearing the name "VII Rings."

Belichick rode around in "V Rings" in the years after the Patriots beat the Eagles in the Super Bowl since by that point he'd racked up three titles with the Patriots and two with the Giants as defensive coordinator. When the Patriots beat the Seahawks two years ago, he moved on to "VI Rings."

Belichick recently donated a 24' Grady White vessel to Sail Newport, a Rhode Island non-profit, for use "as a support and safety vessel for all of our instructional programs and regattas," said Brad Read, executive director of Sail Newport. But Belichick has "VII Rings" to help him enjoy whatever days off he's afforded himself before he gets started on his preparations for 2017.