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Tee Higgins can’t join the Bengals until he signs his tender. The receiver hasn’t signed his tender and doesn’t intend to anytime soon, Adam Schefter of ESPN reports.

As expected, Higgins is not expected to sign the tender before next week’s organized team activities.

Higgins, the only franchise-tagged player who has not received a long-term extension this offseason, is scheduled to make $21.8 million on the one-year, fully guaranteed franchise tag.

Higgins, 25, played 12 games last season, missing four games with a fractured rib and then Week 18 with a hamstring issue. He caught 42 passes for 656 yards and five touchdowns, all career lows.

He had 1,000-yard seasons in 2021 and 2022 and has 257 catches for 3,684 yards and 24 touchdowns in his four seasons in Cincinnati, which made him a second-round pick in 2020.

If the roast of Tom Brady was awkward for Brady’s kids, it also was at least a little weird for one of Bill Belichick’s sons.

With lingering tension between Bill and the team (especially after the 10-part Apple documentary that seemed to paint him in a negative light), Brian Belichick continues to work for the Patriots after his dad’s departure. Brian Belichick continues in his job as the team’s safeties coach.

New coach Jerod Mayo was asked on Monday to address how Brian has handled recent events.

“True professional,” Mayo said. “Any time you see your dad and your brother go somewhere else, the natural thing would be to go with them. But he is a New Englander. He is a Patriot. I am happy to have him. I know [defensive coordinator] DeMarcus [Covington] is happy to have him as well. I think he is a great coach, and I still think he has room to grow. He has really taken it by the horns and worked on his development. So, [I’m] excited to have him.”

Brian has spent seven prior years with the Patriots. He enters his fifth year as safeties coach. He graduated from Trinity College in 2016.

Receiver DeVante Parker signed a one-year, $1.2 million deal with the Eagles this offseason. Parker, though, won’t play a down for his new team.

He announced his retirement Monday night.

“I want to see my [four] kids, spend quality time with them,” Parker told Adam Schefter of ESPN. “I want to be there for them whenever I can.”

Parker, 31, played nine NFL seasons after the Dolphins drafted him 14th overall in 2015. He played seven seasons with Miami and two with New England.

He finished his NFL career with 369 catches for 5,266 yards and 27 touchdowns.

“I’m just going to take things slowly,” Parker told Schefter when asked what was next for him.

The GOAT is having a month to remember. Or maybe to forget.

Regardless, May 2024 isn’t likely to bring closure to his lingering effort to purchase a chunk of the Las Vegas Raiders. According to Mark Maske of the Washington Post, it’s “doubtful” that a vote on the proposed transaction will be held at this week’s meetings in Nashville.

The deal was first struck in February 2023. Fifteen months later, the league still hasn’t voted on it.

It’s believed that the agreement as initially configured tied the equity transfer at least in part to employment. When the owners slammed the door last year on giving equity to employees — a rule change majority owner Mark Davis opposed in the meeting where it was discussed — the primary concern became the steep discount Brady would be getting.

Other concerns relate to Brady’s work with Fox as the network’s top game analyst. It’s a clear conflict of interest, since Brady will have a fiduciary duty to the Raiders and while also getting access to proprietary information regarding the team’s opponents and competitors. This isn’t about trusting him to keep his mouth shut; his status as an owner of the Raiders would compel him not to.

Last week, the league said that there are no limitations on the games Brady can work for Fox, because he’s “not an owner of the Raiders.” This implies that, once he is (if he is), things could change.

It’s hardly unfair to expect him to pick a lane. Minority of the Raiders or broadcaster of all teams. One of the other. Not both.

This isn’t about his accomplishments as a player. This is about precedent. It’s a bad one. And so, at a time when Brady seems to have too few people around him who are willing to say “bad idea” (e.g., to be roasted), at least nine owners must be willing to do what none of his friends, associates, and/or assorted yes men will.

As expected, CeeDee Lamb is not expected.

The Cowboys begin organized team activities Tuesday, but their star receiver will continue to be a no-show at the voluntary work, Ian Rapoport of NFL Media reports.

Lamb wants a contract extension and the question now is: How long does he stay away? Running back Ezekiel Elliott and right guard Zack Martin both held out into training camp in recent summers, and the Cowboys eventually gave both what they wanted before the season started.

Quarterback Dak Prescott, Lamb and edge rusher Micah Parsons, all of whom are expected to reset the market at their positions if only briefly, all want extensions. Parsons also has not participated in the team’s offseason program, though it is unknown whether he will show up Tuesday.

Lamb is set to make $17.99 million this year on the fifth-year option and is eligible for the franchise tag in 2025, but he wants to be paid as one of the top receivers in the NFL now.

Lamb and Vikings receiver Justin Jefferson both are waiting for new deals, which complicates both their situations. Bengals receiver Ja’Marr Chase also is seeking a long-term extension. All three hope to reset the market.

Dolphins receiver Tyreek Hill’s $30 million a year average is the highest at the position currently.

Lamb led the league with 135 catches for 1,749 yards and 12 touchdowns last season in earning All-Pro honors for the first time.

His contract issue is, by all appearances, unresolved. That didn’t prompt Rams quarterback Matthew Stafford from attending the start of 2024 OTAs.

After the Rams didn’t use a first-round pick on a quarterback, Stafford’s camp leaked concerns regarding the lack of security in his contract beyond 2024. The team’s initial position was to whip up a word salad. Soon, however, coach Sean McVay seemed to concede that Stafford will get the revised contract he wants.

If he has, it’s still in someone’s drawer. Or they’ve reached a verbal agreement that has yet to be reduced to writing.

Folks in St. Louis would have clear advice for Stafford — get any verbal promises from the Rams in writing. ASAFP.

Stafford could still leave the voluntary offseason workouts at any time. He also could skip mandatory minicamp or boycott training camp. Yes, he’d fined. He’s made more than enough since entering the league 15 years ago to afford it.

Complicating the situation is the Lions’ recent move to give Jared Goff a deal worth $53 million per year in new money. Thus, in addition to more guarantees in 2025, Stafford also might want more dollars.

Behind Stafford, the Rams’ options are Jimmy Garoppolo, Dresser Winn, and possibly Stetson Bennett. So, yes, Stafford has leverage if/when he refuses to show up.

The Broncos will begin the season without Drew Sanders.

The second-year linebacker tore his Achilles early in the offseason program, Mike Klis of 9News reports.

The injury occurred before the draft in late April, according to Klis, and Sanders already has undergone surgery to repair it. The hope is Sanders can return sometime before the end of the season.

Still, he will miss most of the 2024 season.

The Broncos drafted outside linebacker Jonah Elliss in the third round, with Elliss joining Jonathon Cooper, Baron Brown and Nik Bonitto at outside linebacker.

Denver made Sanders a third-round pick last year, and he began at inside linebacker before moving to outside linebacker midway through the 2023 season.

He played all 17 games and saw action on 258 defensive snaps and 297 on special teams as a rookie. Sanders totaled 24 tackles, a tackle for loss and a fumble recovery.

Cornerback Jaycee Horn has played 22 games and missed 29 with injuries since the Panthers made him the eighth overall pick in 2021.

Horn, 24, decided to change his offseason training in an attempt to stay on the field in 2024. He went back to what he did in college at South Carolina and added more weightlifting to his offseason training.

“Just trying different things,” Horn said Monday, via Joe Person of “Obviously, what I did the years before didn’t work with dealing with injury — and it can be some unlucky-ness. Just trying to switch something up and start from ground zero and build my body back up.”

Horn has had some soft-tissue injuries like a hamstring in Week 1 last season that required surgery. He missed 10 games. But three broken bones in his foot as a rookie and a fractured wrist his second season were just bad luck.

He has made only four interceptions and 13 passes defensed in three seasons.

“I watch tape,” Horn said. “I know what I’m capable of, and I still feel like I’m one of the best DBs in this league. I’ve just got to be out there to show it. So, that’s what I’m looking forward to doing.”

NFL teams can designate one player from outside the United States as their international roster exemption, and the Panthers have chosen a player with more American football experience than most.

Junior Aho, a defensive lineman from France, has signed with the Panthers. He gets the team’s international exemption, which means he does not count toward the Panthers’ 90-player offseason roster limit and also won’t count toward the practice squad limit if he’s on the practice squad during the regular season. He would count toward the 53-player limit if he makes the active roster.

Aho started playing for an American football club in his hometown of Nice, France, which got him a shot to play in college in the United States, first at New Mexico Military Institute and then at SMU.

After going undrafted last year, Aho signed with the Vikings and was on their practice squad.

When the NFL schedule was released last week, 31 teams learned that they will be playing games in prime time this season.

The Panthers were the only team to be left out of the fun. They will have a standalone game when they face the Giants in Germany on a Sunday morning in the U.S. in Week 10, but they will otherwise be playing Sunday afternoon games for the rest of the season.

On Monday, head coach Dave Canales said that those are the breaks for a team coming off of a 2-15 season.

“You got to earn it, you got to earn prime-time games,” Canales said, via the team’s website. “They don’t just throw you on prime-time games for no reason. . . . We have to build something, a version of football that we’re proud of and be able to accentuate the strengths and talents of our guys that we have.”

Canales believes the team will get to that point, but that they have “a long way to go” before they will be scoring the most desired spots on the schedule.