Patriots

Patriots release long-time kicker Stephen Gostkowski

Patriots release long-time kicker Stephen Gostkowski

Tom Brady isn't the only long-tenured member of the Patriots leaving New England this offseason.

The Patriots are releasing veteran kicker Stephen Gostkowski on Monday. The release was first reported by The Boston Globe's Jim McBride and was confirmed by the team later on social media.

New England selected Gostkowski in the fourth round of the 2006 NFL Draft to replace Patriots legend Adam Vinatieri, and he's spent his entire 14-year career in Foxboro.

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Gostkowski made the Pro Bowl four times during his Patriots tenure but struggled with injuries and inconsistency over the last two seasons.

He made just 84.4 percent of his field goals in 2018 and went on injured reserve four games into the 2019 campaign with a hip injury that required surgery.

The 36-year-old leaves Foxboro as the Patriots' all-time leading scorer (1,775 points) with three Super Bowl titles to his name. He was New England's longest-tenured player after Tom Brady left to join the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.

Gostkowski's release will leave the Patriots without a kicker, as Nick Folk finished the 2019 campaign as their kicker but currently is a free agent.

NFL players rip league's postgame jersey swap policy for next season

NFL players rip league's postgame jersey swap policy for next season

A tradition that became popular in international soccer has become a staple of NFL postgames in recent years, but it might not be allowed during the 2020 season.

Swapping jerseys with an opponent is now commonplace in North American professional sports leagues. We often see younger players swap jerseys with veterans who they grew up watching. Former New England Patriots quarterback Tom Brady is a sought-after player for the postgame jersey swap. Multiple players from the Washington Redskins asked for his No. 12 jersey after a Week 5 game last season.

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Well, unfortunately for NFL players, swapping jerseys could be banned in the upcoming season as the league tries to implement social distancing measures amid the COVID-19 pandemic. However, the NFL and NFLPA have not yet agreed on all of the medical protocols for gamedays. NFL Media's Tom Pelissero reported the latest information Thursday:

Players were not pleased with this development, to say the least.

One of the most outspoken players was San Francisco 49ers cornerback Richard Sherman, who tweeted the following message. It earned a retweet from Patriots running back James White, among other players.

Many other players were not afraid to share their displeasure with the jersey swap potentially being banned. Here are some of those reactions:

With opposition so strong and coming from several of the league's stars, it'll be interesting to see if the league eventually eases up and allows jersey swaps to happen as normal next season.

WATCH: Cam Newton, N'Keal Harry meet for first workout as Patriots teammates

WATCH: Cam Newton, N'Keal Harry meet for first workout as Patriots teammates

Cam Newton is wasting no time getting to know his New England Patriots wide receivers.

The new Patriots quarterback, who officially signed a one-year contract with the team Wednesday, linked up with wideout Mohamed Sanu last week for a few throwing sessions in Los Angeles.

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This Wednesday, it was N'Keal Harry's turn to catch passes from Newton, according to Boston.com, which obtained video of the duo's L.A. workout from EBA Sports.

The video shows Newton meeting Harry for the first time as a member of the Patriots before throwing the second-year receiver a handful of passes.

Newton and Harry worked out together for about two hours and were later joined by Cleveland Browns star wide receiver Odell Beckham Jr., per Boston.com.

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Harry has been working hard this offseason to improve his game after a disappointing rookie campaign. The Patriots' 2019 first-round pick appeared in just seven games last season due to a nagging ankle injury, catching 12 passes on 24 targets for 105 yards and two touchdowns.

It's encouraging to see the 22-year-old on the practice field with Newton, who's aiming to bounce back from his own foot injury that limited him to two games in 2019.

Newton will have to beat out second-year QB Jarrett Stidham for the starting job, and it appears he's eager to get started while developing chemistry with his new pass-catchers.