FOXBORO, Mass. – The Patriots took care of business with all of their draft picks by officially signing first round selection Brandon Meriweather today. The two sides were reportedly close to a deal on Friday, the team's first day of training camp, but the move to get Meriweather on the field wasn't completed until today.
By signing his deal, reportedly a five-year contract, Meriweather is the last player aside from Asante samuel to report to camp. The two sides came to an agreement late Friday, when Meriweather's agent, Joby Branion, told the Boston Globe the two sides were close and only had a few details to work out.
Head coach Bill Belichick spoke briefly on the topic of Meriweather's joining
the team. "Well we expected him to be in here," the coach said after
practice. "He has a long way to go," the coach added.
Meriweather was selected by the Patriots in the first round of the 2007 NFL Draft (24th overall) out of the University of Miami. The 5-foot-11, 200-pound defender appeared in 52 games with 1 starts recording 293 career tackles – a school record for a defensive back. The 23-year old also managed 2.5 sacks, 7 interceptions and 25 passes defended.
Kareem Brown, the Patriots fourth round pick in the 2007 NFL Draft, was suspended until Monday for violating team rules according to a report in the Boston Globe. While no further details of Brown's suspension were available, it could not have been a worse start for the rookie to begin his first professional training camp in the dog house.
Brown is vying for a reserve role on a line filled with first round talent.
Although Brown has the same pedigree as nosetackle Vince Wilfork – both
attended University of Miami – don't expect any favoritism from the coaching
staff just because of Miami's football powerhouse reputation.
The injury to defensive back Chad Scott coupled with the continued holdout of Asante Samuel, left a void at cornerback position on Saturday. It was a hole fourth-year veteran Randall Gay was only too happy to fill. Injured much of the past two seasons, Gay has been the forgotten man in the Patriots secondary. After starting as a rookie, injuries have limited him to just 8 games with 2 starts the last two years.
Gay worked with the first unit in corner drills during much of the session on Saturday.
With his contract signed, rookie Brandon Meriweather was thrust into action his first day of camp. The coaches inserted him into the lineup during team drills on Saturday's practice.
Free agent signee, Tory James also saw action at the corner position.
Ellis Hobbs Did Nothing Wrong
The Boston Herald reported that Patriots cornerback Ellis Hobbs received a note from the NFL to let him know they made a mistake. The issue concerned a pass interference call that came during the Patriots' loss to the Indianapolis Colts in the AFC Championship game. Hobbs was flagged for interference, but the cornerback protested that he made no contact with the receiver. The penalty gave the Colts the ball at the one yard line and they scored on the next play, further fueling their historic comeback.
While it's water over the dam now, Hobbs can feel justified he did the right thing. Unfortunately, it's too late to do anything about it other than to chalk it up to an "I told you so" moment.
PUP List Adjusted
The team announced a number of players on the PUP list late Friday. One name that was unexpectedly on it, wide receiver Donte Stallworth. Other's on the list include:Richard Seymour, David Thomas, Chad Jackson, Troy Brown, Mel Mitchell and Eddie Jackson
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