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#pounditTuesday, April 13, 2021

Football

Could Julian Edelman’s knee injury mean the end of his Patriots career?

Julian Edelman

Julian Edelman played in just six games last season after suffering a knee injury, and the veteran receiver is still working to get back to 100 percent health. Unfortunately, he may not be able to in time for the 2021 season.

Edelman’s knee issue is one that has hampered him for two years and will likely force him to miss at least some of next season, according to Karen Guregian of the Boston Herald. A source familiar with Edelman’s injury said surgery can provide temporary relief but that Edelman may never be fully healthy again.

All indications are that Edelman is going to try to fight his way onto the field, but it is now fair to wonder if the New England Patriots can keep him. They have already handed out big free agent contracts to wide receivers Nelson Agholor and Kendrick Bourne, and they may add another player or two at the position in the draft.

Edelman’s base salary for 2021 is a reasonable $2.8 million, so there is no major risk to keeping him. However, the Patriots could free up roughly $3.5 million in salary cap space if they release or trade him.

There was talk before last season that the Patriots and Edelman may want to move on from one another with Tom Brady gone, but he’s still considered an important leader in New England. He remained committed to the team even without his best buddy on the roster, though he did have a funny take on the Tampa Bay Buccaneers winning the Super Bowl.

Edelman caught 100 passes in 2019, so he is still capable of producing if healthy. Bill Belichick will probably want to keep him around to help mentor the team’s young receivers, but the lingering knee issue could force the Patriots’ hand.

Photo: Jeffrey Beall/Wikimedia via CC-by-SA 3.0

Ex-NFL player Phillip Adams was alleged gunman in South Carolina shooting

Phillip Adams

The man who killed five people in a shooting in South Carolina on Wednesday has reportedly been identified as former NFL player Phillip Adams.

A source briefed on the investigation told Meg Kinnard of The Associated Press that Adams is the man who shot and killed five people, including well-known doctor Robert Lesslie. Adams then shot himself and committed suicide early Thursday morning.

Adams grew up in Rock Hill, S.C., and his parents reportedly live near Lesslie’s home. Lesslie, 70, and his wife Barbara, 69, were pronounced dead at the scene along with their two grandchildren, who were 9 and 5. A man who had been working at the home, 38-year-old James Lewis, was found shot to death outside. A sixth person was hospitalized with “serious gunshot wounds,” according to the York County Sheriff’s Office.

Adams had reportedly been treated by Dr. Lesslie.

Police were called to the victims’ home at around 4:45 p.m. on Wednesday and spent hours searching for the suspect. They found him in a nearby home just after midnight. The investigation is ongoing, but The Associated Press reports that Adams was identified as the shooter.

Adams was drafted by the San Francisco 49ers in the seventh round of the 2010 NFL Draft. The former South Carolina State star went on to play for five other teams, the last of which was the Atlanta Falcons in 2015. He suffered multiple injuries during his NFL career, including concussions and a broken ankle.

Jared Goff’s girlfriend Christen Harper named finalist for SI Swim Search

Christen Harper

Sports Illustrated has revealed its annual “Swim Search” finalists, and Detroit Lions quarterback Jared Goff’s girlfriend is one of them.

SI this revealed the 15 finalists who are hoping to land a spot in the publication’s annual Swimsuit Issue. Christen Harper is among the Final 15. She said in an Instagram post that she has fulfilled a lifelong dream by shooting with the magazine.

Harper, a model and actress, has been dating Goff for quite some time. The two were together back in 2019 when Goff led the Los Angeles Rams to the Super Bowl, which is when we introduced her to you.

Harper has four credits on her IMDB page, but it sounds like shooting for the SI Swimsuit Issue is as exciting for her as any acting gig she has landed.

H/T Egotastic Sports

Tom Brady cracked hilarious joke after visiting Disney World

Tom Brady Bucs

Tom Brady cracked a hilarious joke on Twitter after making a visit to Disney World.

Brady recently went to Disney World as part of an advertising campaign following Tampa Bay’s Super Bowl win. Disney World shared a tweet on Monday of Brady’s visit and included a few photos of him in the new Star Wars land.

Brady responded to the tweet, joking that he keeps playing “for the free trips to Disney World.”

It’s not even free; Brady is likely getting paid to go. But that’s how it works — the more famous you are and the more money you have, oftentimes the more likely you are to receive free stuff.

But everyone knows how hard-working and driven Brady is to win, which makes the tweet so great. Disney World better come out with some new rides to keep Brady motivated!

This was a nice redemption for Brady, who bombed with his April Fools’ joke.

The Tom Brady and Rob Gronkowski Tampa party continues! Treat yourself or a friend with this great Tampa Fiesta shirt. You can buy it here.

This NFC team reportedly ‘loves’ Trey Lance

Trey Lance

Much of the talk leading up to the NFL Draft has been about Zach Wilson, Mac Jones and Justin Fields. Trevor Lawrence has been the presumed No. 1 pick and regarded by many as the top quarterback prospect. But there is one other quarterback in the mix to go highly, who isn’t receiving too much buzz: Trey Lance. However, one team reportedly “loves” him.

Michael Lombardi said on his “The GM Shuffle” podcast episode published Wednesday that he knows Washington loves Lance. He also suggested Washington could trade a haul to move up for Lance.

“I think Washington is going to be the next team to unload all their picks to try to get a QB,” Lombardi said. “I think they love Lance. I don’t think, I know Washington loves Lance. So, will they trade up to get Lance? That remains to be seen.”

Washington won the NFC East last season and made the playoffs, meaning they will be picking at No. 19. They would have to do some work to move up in the draft. Whether they make a move depends on how motivated they are to get Lance. The window seems to be open for them to move up to No. 4 if they want.

Washington currently has three QBs under contract: Ryan Fitzpatrick, Taylor Heinicke, and Kyle Allen. None of the three are franchise quarterbacks, which could lead Washington to have interest in a QB this draft. Might they move up for Lance? It would probably take a lot. We know one person who would be a fan of the move.

Ravens CB Davontae Harris thinks all 22 Deshaun Watson accusers are lying

Deshaun Watson

Davontae Harris on Wednesday expressed his doubts about the allegations Deshaun Watson is facing.

The Baltimore Ravens cornerback tweeted that the allegations Watson is facing are getting “questionable.” He also shared his belief that the women aren’t telling the truth. Harris said these 22 women are making it harder for — in his words — actual victims — to come forward.

22 women have filed lawsuits against Watson, alleging he sexually assaulted them. The cases follow a similar pattern of Watson reaching out to women to arrange massages and then allegedly acting inappropriately while with them.

Watson’s defense team shared statements from 18 women who backed the Houston Texans quarterback. The numbers indicate that Watson sought and/or received massages from at least 40 women over the last year or so.

Houston police are investigating at least one criminal complaint against Watson. All the other lawsuits are civil cases, where the burden of proof is lower. A woman came out publicly this week and attached her name to her accusation against Watson.

Aaron Rodgers has plan to host Jeopardy full-time while playing in NFL

Aaron Rodgers

Aaron Rodgers is campaigning for a real shot at becoming the next host of “Jeopardy!”

Rodgers filmed 10 episodes as the guest host of “Jeopardy!” The first five episodes are airing this week, and the second five are airing next week. The show is searching for a replacement for beloved longtime host Alex Trebek, who died last year.

Rodgers is 37 and won NFL MVP last year, so he has no reason to believe his football career is ending any time soon. The Green Bay Packers quarterback believes he can host Jeopardy while playing in the NFL.

“I don’t think I’d need to give up football to do it,” Rodgers said of hosting. “They film 46 days a year. I worked 187 this year in Green Bay. That gives me 178 days to do ‘Jeopardy!’ So I feel like I could fit 46 into that 178 and make it work. It would be a dream job for sure, and I’m not shy at all about saying I want the job. That’s how I went into it. I want an opportunity to be in the mix.”

Rodgers told “Good Morning Football” on Tuesday that he still loves football and does not want to give it up.

Rodgers is a longtime fan of the show and competed in a celebrity event in the past, so he has ties to it. It was generous of the show to give him a shot, and maybe they legitimately are considering him for the role.

But despite what Rodgers believes, it’s hard to imagine the timing would work for him to host while also playing for the Packers. The bigger issue probably is all the competition he will have with potential hosts, not to mention the trolls.

49ers brass to watch Justin Fields’ next workout

Justin Fields

The San Francisco 49ers are said to be targeting Mac Jones with the No. 3 overall pick in the upcoming NFL Draft. They are still doing their due diligence regardless.

NFL Media’s Ian Rapoport shared on Wednesday that Justin Fields is going to throw again for NFL teams on April 14. 49ers head coach Kyle Shanahan and GM John Lynch are expected to attend this workout.

Jones had two workouts in March. The second one conflicted with Fields’ first workout. Lynch and Shanahan attended Alabama’s second Pro Day rather than Fields’ workout. San Francisco also made a big trade with the Miami Dolphins to move up in the draft a few days after Jones’ first workout.

The Niners are expected to take Jones in the draft, but they’re definitely giving Fields a look.

Dak Prescott looks sharp in video posted by trainer

Dak Prescott

Dak Prescott’s recovery from the fractured ankle he suffered last season appears to be right on schedule.

In a video posted by quarterback trainer Damian Devon, Prescott is seen practicing quick screens. Notably, he is planting firmly on his right foot, which is where he suffered the injury.

It’s a small step, but it’s nice to see Prescott throwing. It’s also good to see him putting emphasis on his right ankle without any apparent issue.

The Cowboys will be counting on Prescott to recapture his old form after the ankle injury. That’s certainly what they’ll be paying him for. They will have monitored his rehab progress closely, and this video should only serve to make them feel optimistic.

Josh Allen sums up his thoughts on the franchise tag

Josh Allen

With Josh Allen heading into the final guaranteed year of his rookie contract, both he and the Buffalo Bills know it’s time to start thinking about an extension.

While Allen’s fifth-year option is certain to be picked up, there is still uncertainty about what will happen after that. The Bills have signaled that extension talks are planned, but we don’t yet know how closely aligned the quarterback’s demands are with what the Bills might be willing to pay. That means the franchise tag could be on the table after 2022.

In an appearance on The Ringer’s “10 Questions with Kyle Brandt,” Allen had a pretty amusing response when asked what he thought about the franchise tag: “ew.”

That’s almost certainly how most quarterbacks feel about it too, but sometimes teams are left with no choice. That’s what happened to the Dallas Cowboys, but that worked out alright for Dak Prescott in the end. Still, it sounds like Allen wants to avoid that. Ultimately, it may come down to how willing he is to compromise.