Brady agrees to be plaintiff in potential suit

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Brady agrees to be plaintiff in potential suit

By Tom E. Curran
CSNNE.com

Niiiice saber rattling!If the NFLPA chooses to decertify and bring the NFL to court to challenge the league's antitrust exemption, the three plaintiffs in the case will be Tom Brady, Peyton Manning and Drew Brees. (What, no Cromartie?!)
It was later reported that Patriots guard Logan Mankins would join the three quarterbacks as a fourth plaintiff if the NFL is taken to court.
Understand, this news is almost ALL sizzle and no steak. Everything would have to go down the crapper before you see Brady, Manning and Brees striding into court side-by-each to make their cases againsta league that's earned the threemen more than a quarter-billion combined. But what this news does in the waning hours of the current CBA is let the owners: 1) know that the players will take them to court and make their lives a living legal hell with an antitrust suit the players will win (the franchise tag is - at its core - unconstitutional); 2) shows that the biggest guns are on board and willing to stand up for the guys they sweat with against the guys who sign their checks, and 3) lets the owners contemplate the visual image of these three well-spoken league icons nodding in agreement as a lawyer rips the NFL a newie. Oh, and 4) no doubt pisses off their respective owners. While this may be a wholly symbolic move, underestimating Brady's allegiance to his teammates and the rest of the league would be a mistake. He's already spoken out against the 18-game season. Meanwhile, his laborious contract negotiations with the Krafts in 2005 and 2010 took away the innocence he had when he was starting out. He's seen how the sausage gets made. He knows how much the owners make off the players' sweat, blood and cartilage (it's work the players choose andare well compensated for, I know). If anyone were to suggest Brady is biting the hand that's fed him, he could reasonably ask, "Who's been feeding who?"

Tom E. Curran can be reached at tcurran@comcastsportsnet.com. Follow Tom on Twitter at http:twitter.comtomecurran

Curran’s 100 plays that shaped a dynasty: A nice pair of kicks

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Curran’s 100 plays that shaped a dynasty: A nice pair of kicks

We're into the Top 10 now.

These are the plays of the Bill Belichick Era you best never forget. And probably can't. They're the ones that led directly to championships -- most for New England, a couple for the other guys. Or they're plays that signified a sea change in the way the New England Patriots under Belichick would be behaving from there on out.

I did my best to stack them in order of importance. You got a problem with that? Good. Let us know what's too high, too low or just plain wrong. And thanks for keeping up!

PLAY NUMBER: 4

THE YEAR: 2001 (actually Feb. 3, 2002)

THE GAME: Patriots 20, Rams 17

THE PLAY: Vinatieri 48-yarder in Superdome delivers SB36 win

WHY IT’S HERE: When the Red Sox won the World Series in 2004, it was viewed nationally and locally as a cathartic moment for a long-suffering region. Deliverance for a fanbase that resolutely suffered through 90 years of star-crossed heartbreak with a mix of stoicism and fatalism. “Long-suffering Red Sox fan” was a badge of honor, an identity. And New Englanders – baseball fans or not - would self-identify with the hideous notion of Red Sox Nation. There was no “Patriots Nation.” To drag out the forced metaphor, Patriots fans were living in tents and cabins in the wilderness, recluses. Reluctant to be seen in town where they’d be mocked. And suddenly, they cobbled together one of the most improbable, magical seasons in American professional sports, a year which gave birth to a dynasty which was first celebrated, now reviled but always respected. And while so many games and plays led to this 48-yarder – ones we’ve mentioned 12 times on this list – Adam Vinatieri kicking a 48-yarder right down the f****** middle to win the Super Bowl was an orgasmic moment for the recluses and pariahs that had been Patriots fans when nobody would admit to such a thing.
 

PLAY NUMBER: 3

THE YEAR: 2001 (actually Jan. 19, 2002)

THE GAME: Patriots 16, Raiders 13

THE PLAY: Vinatieri from 45 through a blizzard to tie Snow Bowl

WHY IT’S HERE: Two thoughts traveling on parallel tracks were running through the mind while Adam Vinatieri trotted onto the field and lined up his 45-yarder to tie Oakland in the 2001 AFC Divisional Playoff Game, the final one at Foxboro Stadium. “There’s no way he can make this kick in this weather,” was the first. “The way this season’s gone, I bet he makes this kick. It can’t end here. It can’t end now.” From where I was sitting in the press box I couldn’t see the ball clearly, probably because I was looking for it on a higher trajectory than Vinatieri used. So I remember Vinatieri going through the ball, my being unable to locate it in the air and then looking for the refs under the goalposts to see their signal. And when I located them, I saw the ball scuttle past. Then I saw the officials’ arms rise. Twenty-five years earlier, the first team I ever followed passionately – the ’76 Patriots – left me in tears when they lost to the Raiders in the playoffs. Now, at 33, I was covering that team and it had gotten a measure of retribution for the 8-year-old me.
 

Buy or Sell: Should NFL not test for marijuana?

Buy or Sell: Should NFL not test for marijuana?

Greg Dickerson and Mike Giardi give their take on whether the NFL should not test for marijuana.

Buy or Sell: Patriots will not lose at home even without Tom Brady

Buy or Sell: Patriots will not lose at home even without Tom Brady

Greg Dickerson and Mike Giardi give their take on whether they think the Patriots will be not lose a home game during Brady’s suspension.