Patriots

Did Patriots almost sign Colin Kaepernick? Robert Kraft addresses rumor

Did Patriots almost sign Colin Kaepernick? Robert Kraft addresses rumor

To be frank, the chances of Colin Kaepernick signing with the New England Patriots were always very slim.

But Patriots owner Robert Kraft didn't exactly slam the door on a recent report connecting the free agent quarterback to his team.

The New York Times' Devin Gordon asked Kraft in a recent interview about an unconfirmed mid-September report that the Patriots had talked to Kaepernick about potentially signing him as a backup. Here's how Kraft handled the question:

"In the interview, Mr. Kraft called the report a 'rumor' that had originated with a lawyer in Kaepernick’s camp," Gordon wrote, "but when asked if that meant the report was untrue, he paused for three seconds. 'I’m done talking about it,' he said finally."

That's certainly not a confirmation that any discussions took place, but it's also not a denial, either.

The initial report did seem suspect: Kaepernick's attorney, Mark Geragos, hinted to TMZ in September that two NFL teams could be interested in signing his client, then made a cryptic reference to rapper Meek Mill -- who Kraft visited in prison -- to insinuate one of those clubs was the Patriots.

Basically, it would have been an easy report for Kraft to squash, but for whatever reason, the Patriots owner pulled back.

Of course, this is all water under the bridge now. Kaepernick hasn't played an NFL snap since 2016 as he continues to raise awareness of racial inequality and police violence against minorities in America, while New England appears content with Brian Hoyer as its backup for ageless quarterback Tom Brady.

Click here to download the new MyTeams App by NBC Sports! Receive comprehensive coverage of your teams and stream the Celtics easily on your device.

 

NBC SPORTS BOSTON SCHEDULE

NFL Rumors: Antonio Brown sent "intimidating" text messages to artist accusing him of sexual misconduct

NFL Rumors: Antonio Brown sent "intimidating" text messages to artist accusing him of sexual misconduct

After a Sports Illustrated story detailed new allegations against Antonio Brown, the Patriots' wide receiver reportedly sent "intimidating" text messages to the accuser. 

An artist, who accused Brown of sexual misconduct after he made a sexual advance toward her and fired her for not reciprocating, received messages from Brown after SI released the original story.

Photos of the messages are included in the story, including Brown asking his associates to investigate his accuser. The artist, who has remained unnamed, had her lawyer write to the NFL for the intimidation to stop, according to Robert Klemko. 

Here is part of what the accuser's lawyer had to say:

Our client ... is understandably frightened by these text messages, which are clearly intended to threaten and intimidate her. While she certainly qualifies as a ‘starving artist,’ she has never approached Mr. Brown, nor will she, about seeking money to compensate her for his sexual misconduct, contrary to his allegations in the text messages.

According to the story, the NFL responded to the letter within an hour and arranged a phone call between investigators and the artist's attorneys. The Patriots and Brown's agent Drew Rosenhaus did not comment. 

Sports Illustrated also texted the number used in the group messages associated with the alleged intimidation, asking the number linked to Brown if they would confirm nor deny the charges brought to him. The number responded with, "foh clown."

The wide receiver is also facing allegations of sexual assault and rape from Britney Taylor. As of now, Brown has not been placed on the commissioner's exempt list and is eligible to play Sunday against the Jets.

Click here to download the new MyTeams App by NBC Sports! Receive comprehensive coverage of your teams and stream the Celtics easily on your device. 

Tom Brady and Jamal Adams sound off on NFL officiating during Jaguars vs Titans

Tom Brady and Jamal Adams sound off on NFL officiating during Jaguars vs Titans

Tom Brady couldn't contain his disappointment in NFL officiating Thursday night after Titans edge rusher Kamalei Correa was flagged for roughing Jaguars quarterback Gardner Minshew. 

Here's the play that netted the Jaguars 15 yards during a first-half drive:

For two seasons now, the NFL has been trying to protect quarterbacks from plays where defensive players drive them into the ground on sacks and/or QB hits. Plenty of quarterbacks have suffered collarbone and/or shoulder injuries that cause them to miss significant time, so the league has put an emphasis on calling bigger hits on quarterbacks. 

But sometimes, plays like these don't warrant a 15-yard penalty and players have been expressing their frustration lately. 

Jamal Adams was recently fined for a hit on Browns quarterback Baker Mayfield on Monday Night Football, calling the league a "damn joke" for fining him. And if a quarterback is complaining about a rule protecting quarterbacks, then it's probably time to reconsider how it's being called out on the field. 

Brady and Adams will square off against each other this Sunday when the Jets visit the Patriots in Week 3, so it'll be interesting to see what Adams will do if he has a chance to put a hit on Brady, and how the QB will react if it happens. 

Click here to download the new MyTeams App by NBC Sports! Receive comprehensive coverage of your teams and stream the Celtics easily on your device.