per the NFLPA Calendar: Basically, what this says is that if anything is going to happen with Asante, if he's going to be extended or traded or what have you, it needs to happen by July 14th, 4pm. Previously, before the new CBA, this is around when teams were just being allowed to start negotiations with their franchised players -- and the negotiations could carry well into camp and the regular season. What this deadline does is basically tie the Patriots hands, and prevent them from further negotiating. Starting July 15th, Samuel's only options will be to sign his tender and play, or wait 10 weeks before signing his tender and playing. Since no contract extension can be negotiated, Samuel cannot posit his hold-out as conditional on the team doing something. Previously, franchised players could continue their holdout well into camp, promising to report for camp if the team would only sweeten the pot, or promise not to franchise him next year. Now, the July 14th deadline makes this impossible. At that point, Samuel's choice will be binary -- either sign the tender and play, or hold out for 10 weeks, sign the tender, and play the latter half of the season. He will no longer be able to put the onus of reconciliation on the franchise. What this tells me is that, barring a last-minute trade or extension, we'll know shortly after July 14th what's going to happen with Samuel -- if the hold-out threat is only a bluff, part of his present negotiations, than he'll quickly change his tune and say he's reporting for camp. If he really is as angry and hurt as he says he is, than he just might hold out. Either way, since there's nothing the Pats can do differently after that point, there's no reason for Samuel not to just lay down his hand.