Tom Brady's agent starting a league for non-NFL-eligible players

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Tom Brady's agent starting a league for non-NFL-eligible players

Tom Brady's agent, Don Yee, and former NFL wideout Ed McCaffrey have founded a new professional football league for players who have graduated high school but aren't yet in college and are not NFL-eligible. 

It's called the Pacific Pro League, and it plans to hire players this winter for games that will occur in the summer of 2018. It will be a four-team league, with 50 players per team, based in Southern California that projects it will pay players an average salary of $50,000 for eight games. Players will also receive paid tuition and books at local community colleges, according to a statement sent out by the league. 

"We're hoping to do a good job developing players for pro football," Yee told Patrick Hruby of Vice Sports, "as well as helping them find a path for life outside of football."

The idea is to give football players that have graduated high school -- but haven't been out of high school for three years -- an opportunity to train professionally. 

"In every other sport you can think of, even global sports, young and emerging talent is about to be professional directly from high school or even younger," Yee told Vice. "The only outlier is football. I felt it should no longer be an outlier."

The Pacific Pro League's advisory board includes former NFL coach Mike Shanahan, former NFL official and current analyst for FOX Mike Pereira and ESPN reporter Adam Schefter.

Steelers show up to training camp with ridiculous cars

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Steelers show up to training camp with ridiculous cars

The most annoying logic in sports is the “Look at the silly things this team is doing; that’s why they STINK!” logic.

Let people do what they're going to do. The Texans didn’t lose because they were wearing letterman jackets and the Dolphins haven’t failed to reach the playoffs because T-Pain re-did their fight song. Teams win and lose because of what they do on the field. 

Anyway, the Steelers showed up at training camp in some bonkers vehicles. That’s why they stink. 

This will factor in 0.00 percent to how the Steelers fare this season, but it makes one kind of wish Adalius Thomas was still in the league because maybe he’d have that flying car by now.  
 

No Patriot more excited to return than Rob Gronkowski

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No Patriot more excited to return than Rob Gronkowski

FOXBORO -- The most excitable player on the practice field on Day One of Patriots training camp wasn’t some young kid getting his first taste of the massive crowds at Foxboro for practice, or established veterans like Stephon Gilmore and Brandin Cooks, or even Tom Brady, who lives for this.

The player who was bouncing from first step to last was none other than Rob Gronkowski. 

“I’ve definitely had a longer vacation than a lot of guys,” said Gronkowski. “I’d probably say I was the most eager to get going, to get rolling.”

Gronkowski hasn’t played in a game since he suffered a season-ending injury back in the Week 12 win over the Jets. Back surgery followed and while the imposing tight end has been ahead of schedule the entire time, seeing is believing.

Gronk made a handful of nice grabs, including three in the end zone. All resulted in an exuberant display from the 28-year old.

"It’s football," he said. "Just when you’re feeling good out there and making plays you just want to have fun. That’s the whole game of football. Have fun out there, enjoy it and have competition. Competition is huge. That’s what gets you better. That’s what makes you better as a player. That’s what makes the team better -- competition.”

Running around in shorts and shells is a continuation of a process that saw Gronk work with the team during both OTAs and mini-camp. This weekend, another milestone, practicing in full pads, not that there’s a rush.

“I don’t mind the first two days without pads,” he said. “I’m not going to lie. You wanna get acclimated to football and to the movements and everything. You want to get your body back to it. It’s been a while since you’ve been having competition like that . . . but then after that, you’re ready to roll.”

And when that time comes, Gronk will welcome this defense -- and any other -- taking their shots.

“I always want to take hits. When we put those pads on, I’m going to definitely be ready. I am going to be ready to take hits, ready to play ball.”

He’d better be. Gronk punctuated those scores with spikes and dancing and some other nonsense that will no doubt be filed away by the defensive player. Of course, they can’t light up their own tight end, and who would want to extinguish that passion anyway?

"I don’t even notice know what I did,” he said. “It wasn’t like a real spike, it was just like tossing it to the ground. Juiced up, just trying to make plays out there.”