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Patriots News and NFL Notes: 5 Things to Know 4/23

Ian Logue
Ian Logue on Twitter
April 23, 2021 at 10:37 am ET

Patriots News and NFL Notes: 5 Things to Know 4/23(PHOTO: Christopher Hanewinckel - USA TODAY Sports)

🕑 Read Time: 5 minutes

Some Patriots news and NFL notes on this Friday:

1) It’s amazing how a recent interview with ESPN writer Seth Wickersham has stirred up old reports and making them seem new, which is causing everyone to rehash an old topic.

The interview in question came as Wickersham recently sat down for a podcast with Missouri reporter Harrison Vapnek, who asked him about the infamous report from 2018 where Wickersham had reported on the internal issues that went on in New England, which reportedly caused a rift between Robert Kraft, Bill Belichick and Tom Brady.  Those problems also included the circumstances surrounding the Jimmy Garoppolo trade during a tumultuous 2017 season, which Belichick was reportedly reluctant to do.

Wickersham then mentioned that the Patriots head coach was apparently unhappy enough to explore potential openings in Washington and the Giants, as well as Miami, although he also spoke of it as if it was old news.

For those who might remember, that news actually came out in January of last year with a report from then NBC Sports Boston’s Gary Tanguay, which set off a firestorm of people who were shocked at this apparent revelation.

Now, after Wickersham’s mention of it, people who apparently weren’t keeping up are treating this like it’s new, which it’s obviously not.  But that’s dominated the news cycle over the last few days, yet, mostly because they must have missed it the first time.

There’s no point rehashing everything, so I’ll save you minutes of your life that you’d otherwise not get back.  At the end of the day, Belichick never left, Tom Brady did ultimately depart, and aside from that, the rest is history.

So for anyone who hasn’t been following along, there’s definitely nothing to be concerned about.  But it’s just funny how a missed report by some can turn into breaking news.  The media landscape in 2021 is definitely odd, to say the least.

As for the reason for Wickersham’s interview, he was on the podcast with Vapnek promoting his new book coming out in the fall called, ‘It’s Better to Be Feared: The New England Patriots Dynasty and the Pursuit of Greatness’.  It’s set to hit bookstores this October.

2) File this under, “in case you missed it”, but Julian Edelman will be joining the cast of “Inside the NFL”, which airs each week on Showtime during the NFL season.

The long-time Patriots receiver obviously hung up his cleats recently, capping an incredible career and he’s now moving on to the next chapter.  Edelman did a good job of preparing himself for life after football, having marketed himself quite well on social media.  He’s built quite a presence on YouTube, which has seen him put together his own shows where he talks about things like food and movie reviews.

Those endeavors helped build more than 132,000 subscribers, setting himself up with a strong video audience.  Even better, he currently has 2.8 million Instagram followers, as well as 1.4 million on Twitter.  Needless to say, he’ll definitely remain in the feeds of all his supporters, which will certainly help him marketing-wise.

Edelman and his production company, Coast Productions, are also teaming up with ViacomCBS, to which the former Patriots receiver said, “We’re gonna make movies, shows and docs on networks like Showtime, Nickelodeon and Paramount+”

He’s quite savvy and it should be interesting to see what happens with him moving forward.

3) Switching gears back to football, in the latest Mock Draft by Mel Kiper and Todd McShay, they have the Patriots making a trade with the Lions up to #7 to take Mac Jones.

That trade comes on the heels of the 49ers selecting Justin Fields out of Ohio State at #3 overall, which allows Jones to slide down far enough for New England to make the deal with Detroit to go up and get him.

Kiper: We needed a trade for a quarterback — they happen every year — so I’m going to make one with myself since I’m the general manager of the odd-numbered teams. This deal sees the Patriots jump eight spots to get their guy, while the Lions add the Patriots’ second-round pick (No. 46), plus future selections, maybe even their first-rounder in next year’s draft. It’s a lot to give up, but Bill Belichick & Co. need a long-term solution at the game’s most important position.

However, Kiper notes that Jones’ chances of being available here is just 6.8%.  That’s likely because the 49ers are still rumored to be his landing spot, as well as potentially Atlanta at #4, who is also considering drafting Matt Ryan’s successor.  In this draft, they have the Falcons taking Kyle Pitts.

Overall, it’s tough to say if the Patriots will part with the draft capital necessary to move up that high, which Belichick historically hasn’t done.  Instead, the next question will be who they might target in the later rounds, which seems to potentially be the more likely scenario if their guy isn’t there by the time they’re on the clock.

4) Speaking of Patriots quarterbacks, it’s business-as-usual for Cam Newton, who recently got together with Jonnu Smith, Jakobi Meyers, Trent Brown and Kendrick Bourne down in New York City.

Newton has joined fellow QB Jarrett Stidham and his teammates on both the East and West coast for some throwing work as they continue getting ready for the season, but it seems like this recent trip was also more of a team-building weekend for a group that continues getting to know one another.

Newton is coming off a difficult season but the hope is that with one year under his belt and the fact he’s recovering well from injuries he reportedly dealt with last season, along with a pretty stacked roster, that the results will be different this season.

5) Meanwhile, Stidham has had a busy offseason and it sounds like the Patriots seem to have taken notice.

NFL Network’s Mike Giardi recently talked about the fact the team has “a pretty good feeling” about what they’ve seen from Stidham, and to not count him out just yet.

“I said this quite a bit last year, but there’s a pretty good feeling about what Jarrett Stidham has done during the course of this offseason,” said Giardi.  “I don’t know if you want to take the cheese again, that’s just what I’m being told, that they like, sort of, his demeanor right now, that they feel like there’s a bit more urgency to his operation, if you will. He’s the one who organized the workouts on the West Coast earlier this offseason so maybe Jarrett Stidham is saying, ‘I’m not done just yet, this isn’t Cam’s job just yet.'”

According to Tom Curran, he believes that both Newton and Stidham will definitely have competition heading into training camp, which means that both players will have to reach a higher level this season.  Which one responds will be interesting to watch as Stidham seemingly fell apart after Newton’s signing and was more or less a non-factor in 2020.

Seeing Stidham elevate his game would certainly be a good thing, not only to the Patriots’ offense but also in raising his stock should they eventually opt to move on from him.  We’ll likely have a better understanding of the future at the quarterback position after next weekend, which will hopefully see them come away with their final key piece heading into this season.

Patriots News – 04/25, Mock 4.0, NE Doing Homework on Trask

About Ian Logue

Ian Logue is a Seacoast native and owner and senior writer for, an independent media site covering the New England Patriots and has been running this site in one form or another since 1997.

Tags: 2021 Patriots Draft Bill Belichick Cam Newton Detroit Lions Jakobi Meyers Jarrett Stidham Jonnu Smith Julian Edelman Justin Fields Kendrick Bourne Mac Jones Miami Dolphins New England Patriots NY Giants Ohio State Trent Brown Washington Football Team

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    2 years ago

    Both Newton and Stidham will have competition. Did the writer mean that they will compete? With whom? Ya know I mean, you know what I mean?

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