I was just thinking about this Branch thing and how the Patriots management has responded. PATs Management is Smart Their decisions were not arbitrary but very calculated to achieve what they wanted ... to set a precedence on how they would respond to players who act like Branch in the future. IMO, here's what their actions say to players: 1. If you want to force a contract extension we may make you a fair offer but it maybe not as much as if you had waited until we approached you. 2. If we can not come to an agreement we will be ready to let you hold out all season. 3. You will get charged penalties and loss any salary while on reserve/did not report list. 4. We will find a way to move on without you and still be effective. I believe the fair offer but firm stand PATs have used will serve them well in the future. Also players will have to see what has happened to Branch's reputation, a sad thing for Deion. ( his agent's license should be revoked ) I see a silver lining to the Branch Cloud.