Curran's Dallas Diary: Ups and downs of the job

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Curran's Dallas Diary: Ups and downs of the job

By TomE. Curran
CSNNE.com

DALLAS - It's 11:30 your time, 10:30 mine and I'm in the media center with abouteight other saps who didn't get their work done yet. Or are smart enough to be getting tomorrow's work done today. While I'm sitting here, puzzling over what to write, the flat screen TVs, set up around the giant ballroom, are all tuned tothe NFL Network. They are doing their countdown of the 100 Greatest Players and have just rolled through Marino, Hannah, Elway, Merlin Olsen and Gale Sayers and are at Tom Brady, No. 21. So I'm sitting here, at Super Bowl 45, watching the highlights of Brady from Super Bowl 36, 38 and 39. I'm watching Antowain Smith's timeless high step from the sidelines after Adam Vinatieri's field goal sailed through in New Orleans. I'm seeing Brady in the snow against Oakland and remembering the postgame press conference when I asked him if he'd touched the ball with his left hand on the Tuck Rule play and him smirking and saying, basically, "Guess not."I mean, Iwas AT all those things.And not just a bystander but, you know, INVOLVED. Having the chance to ask questionswhich yield answers that won't be forgotten. At least by me.
Lucky s. I'm into the fourth of eight days here and officially missing my family now. I have three boys -- 14, 13 and 11 -- and they are not of a mind to spend a lot of time crushing it with me on the phone. So the conversations are about 90 seconds long with each of them. And my wife -- a teacher in Walpole -- is beyond being up to her ears in responsibilities. Parent. Teacher. Home supervision. Taxi driver. Homework checker. Breakfast maker. Ref. Tough deal for her. Be home soon. I'll check in with y'all tomorrow.
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Tom E. Curran canbe reached at tcurran@comcastsportsnet.com.Follow Tom on Twitter at http:twitter.comtomecurran

Hurley: Why the rush to clear Manning's name?

Hurley: Why the rush to clear Manning's name?

Michael Hurley discusses the NFL's investigation into Peyton Manning's alleged PED use with Toucher and Rich. Hurley wonders why their was such a rush to clear a retired player and continue the probe into still-active players.
 

Solder, Blount, Harmon take part in Patriots on-the-field work

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Solder, Blount, Harmon take part in Patriots on-the-field work

The Patriots had a handful of veterans who missed spring practices back on the field Monday.

The team's website posted video of a training camp "sneak preview," featuring clips from a practice held three days before the official start of camp. In the video were shown offensive tackle Nate Solder, running back LeGarrette Blount and safety Duron Harmon getting in some work after all three were absent from OTA practices open to the media. 

Solder suffered a biceps injury last season that landed him on season-ending injured reserve, which helped throw the Patriots protection in front of Tom Brady into a state of flux for much of the remainder of the season. Should Solder be able to participate in camp practices, as it appears will be the case, the team will have a stabilizing presence on the left side of the line as it prepares for the regular season.

Blount also landed on IR last season after having suffered a hip injury late in the year. He hit the open market as an unrestricted free agent this offseason and eventually signed a one-year deal to remain in New England. If healthy, Blount figures to have the edge in claiming the "big back" role that he's filled for the Patriots at different points over the course of the last three seasons.

Harmon sported a red non-contact jersey during Monday's workout, indicating that he may still need some time before he's ready for any kind of tackling drills this summer. The fourth-year safety explained earlier this month that he was "ready to go" for camp after "just trying to clean up some things physically" during the spring.