Pats Cutting Their Ties

Backup QB O’Connell Cut By Patriots

In a surprising move, the New England Patriots released quarterback Kevin O’Connell on Sunday in the midst of a back-up quarterback competition.  O’Connell was thought to have the inside track on the number two spot in the depth chart but Bill Belichick and company thought otherwise and released the two-year player.

O’Connell impressed the Patriots coaching staff in his two-years in New England after being selected in the third round of the 2008 draft out of San Diego State.  O’Connell was cut tby the Patriots a month after the Pats cut ties with Matt Gutierrez.  The 6-foot-5 quarterback is the third quarterback to leave New England in the past year, joining Gutierrez and Matt Cassel.  

With O’Connell now out of the picture, Andrew Walter looks to be the back-up to Tom Brady. The release of O’Connell must mean that Belichick likes the look of Brian Hoyer, a rookie out of Michigan State, who was recently signed by the Patriots.    

Pats Send Smith To Broncos

New England Trades Le Kevin Smith To Denver

The New England Patriots traded defensive end Le Kevin Smith to the Denver Broncos in exchange for a 2010 fifth-round draft pick.  

Smith was drafted by the Patriots in the sixth round out of the University of Nebraska in the 2006 draft and played in 31 games in three seasons with the Patriots.  With a plethorea of defensive ends and outside linebackers, the Patriots send Smith to Denver to a coach, Josh McDaniels, that knows Smith well.

The fifth-round choice that the Patriots acquire will most likely be the pick that New England sends to Oakland in exchange for Derrick Burgess. 

Patriots Acquire Burgess From Raiders

Pats Sack The Opportunity Of Adding Pass-Rusher

The New England Patriots acquired defensive end Derrick Burgess from the Oakland Raiders for a 2010 third-round and fourth-round pick.  

The acquisition of Burgess, a two-time pro bowler, instantly upgrades the Patriots defense and gives them a dynamic pass rush from the defensive end position.  The 6-foot-2-inch Burgess cost the Pats two draft picks in 2010 and $2 million for base salary in 2009.

Burgess has 47 career sacks and is a eight-year veteran of the NFL. Disgruntled in his past few years in Oakland, a change in scenery and management should brighten Burgess’ outlook on playing, much like that of Randy Moss in 2007.

New England tried to acquire Burgess back before the draft but couldn’t come to an agreement with Oakland regarding draft picks.  However, the two teams kept the lines of communication open and pulled the trigger on a deal just one week into training camp.   

Patriots Training Camp Announced

The New England Patriots have announced that their 2009 training camp will open to the public on July 30.  

With Tom Brady back on the field, Patriots fans will be excited to see if Terrific Tom can return to his 2007 form.  Also, with  Joey Galloway and Fred Taylor in camp, fans will get to see some new faces in a familiar uniform.

Patriots Third-Rounder Done For Season

Linebacker Tyrone McKenzie Tears ACL In Mini-Camp
The New England Patriots lost rookie linebacker Tyrone McKenzie to a torn ACL in which he suffered in rookie mini-camp this past weekend.  

McKenzie, seen as the possible future replacement of Tedy Bruschi at inside linebacker, tore the anterior cruciate ligament in his right knee during coverage drills in Patriots mini-camp.
The Patriots recently released Bo Ruud due to the promise of their second round draft pick. The Patriots now have starters Jerod Mayo and Tedy Bruschi along with Gary Guyton, Eric Alexander, Vinny Ciurciu, and Antonoio Appelby as their only inside linebackers on the roster.