PHOTO: Chicago Bears quarterback Jim Miller (15) watches from the sideleine during the second half of their NFC Divisional Playoff game against the Philadelphia Eagles Saturday, Jan. 19, 2002, at Soldier Field in Chicago. Miller injured his shoulder in the first half and sat out the remainder of the game. The Eagles won 33-19. (AP Photo/Stephen J. Carrera)
NewsWire: Passing Camp and More
The news of the day appears to be a little slow as is the norm this time of the season. On the Newswire, there is more on the former Patriots than current ones. The Jim Miller story, Otis Smith retires, Keith Traylor talking to the Dolphins, Ty Law talking to everyone and some current camp thoughts.
Miller signed on with the Patriots for the 2004 ride to the Super Bowl as the backup quarterback. He had previous experience as a starter for the Chicago Bears and saw limited action under center everywhere else he played. Entering the league in Pittsburgh, Miller only saw the field for 5 games in 3 seasons with the Steelers.
His other stops included Atlanta, Chicago and Tampa Bay. Chicago is where Miller had the majority of his success, although the Bears at that time weren't serious contenders except for the 2001 season. Miller led the Bears to a 13-3 record during the regular season winning the NFC Central Division crown. The run ended with a 33-19 NFC divisional playoff loss to the Philadelphia Eagles.
Miller was listed on the Patriots injury report with a shoulder injury all season. Along with Brady, both players were finally removed from the injured list for the Super Bowl.
Miller signed with the New York Giants as a free agent in 2005, but was sidelined with an injured his shoulder in camp. The Giants have reached an injury settlement with the veteran quarterback, who at this point, may decide retirement is an option. The Giant Insider has more on Miller's injury settlement
Otis Returns then Retires
Otis Smith, the former Patriots defensive back, has decided to call it quits. Smith, another Patriots fan favorite had to wonder what was going on in New England last year when the team went through a rash of injuries in the secondary. Patriots' fans were clamoring for the return of Smith, while Belichick and Pioli opted to sign players like Earthwind Moreland and Hank Poteat.
Smith always appreciated the fans of New England and wanted to retire as a Patriot according to comments made to Tom Curran of the Providence Journal.
"That's where I had my most success," Smith said. "Playing in two Super Bowls and winning one obviously made it the most memorable. Not only that, but the fans in New England appreciated me more than anywhere else."
Former Patriots Making the Rounds
Keith Traylor and Ty Law are working on making visits to a number of potential suitors this offseason as they search for gainful employment in the 2005 season. Traylor, released in a cap savings and youth movement was a key part of the Patriots success in 2004. The big man in the middle held the fort while rookie nose tackle Vince Wilfork learned the position.
Traylor who considered retirement, expressed his desire to play one more year after the Super Bowl. The Patriots however, have decided Wilfork is ready to man the position, and have a number of young defensive linemen they would like to work into the rotation, including talents like Ty Warren, Jarvis Green and Ethan Kelly on the interior.
Traylor is in negotiations with the Dolphins according to reports out of the Miami area. It's assumed that Traylor will step in to replace either Larry Chester who's having surgery, or Tim Bowens who has been battling his own maladies.
Law on the other hand has been the most traveled of all the former Patriots. He has made stops in Pittsburgh, Kansas City, New York, Miami and reportedly involved in talks with a number of other teams.
The Detroit Free Press is reporting that Lions coach Steve Marriucci is considering the Pats all-pro defender. The Lions, who were in need of an upgrade on their defense, went with wide receiver Mike Williams of USC in the first round of the NFL draft. This took many draftniks by surprise considering top defenders were still on the board when they picked. It was even more of a surprise considering they have spent their first round draft choice on a receiver the past two seasons and that was considered an area of depth for them.
Peter King of Sports Illustrated has been hawking the notion that Law will land with the Jets, but this morning's news out of New York is that Donnie Abraham will not retire afterall, greatly diminishing the need to add a player like Law.
Passing Camp Begins
The Boston Herald is running a report on Patriots passing camp that began on Tuesday at Gillette Stadium. Passing camp is considered a time for quarterbacks to get in tune with their receivers during the offseason to work on their timing. Camp offers the opportunity for veterans to get to know the rookies and free agents, while rookies continue to use it as a time to learn the playbook and get familiar with the system.
Much of the rumblings on rookie holdouts are over the issue that rookies need as much time as possible to get to learn the system their new team runs. If they come from smaller schools, the offensive schemes are likely to be significantly different that offenses being run in the pros.
The Patriots have four quarterbacks on the roster; Tom Brady, Doug Flutie, Rohan Davey and Chris Redman. In addition, their receivers are; David Givens, Deion Branch, David Terrell, Tim Dwight, Bethel Johnson, P.K. Sam, Ricky Bryant, Michael McGrew, Cedric James and Jake Schifino. Mark Bartosic is on injured reserve NFL Europe and may be on his way out with all the competition ahead of him on the roster.
Patriots Message Board Sightings
San Diego Charger fans have been swinging by the forums to voice their opinion on which the best running backs in the AFC are. LaDanian Tomlinson was not specified on the list, causing a ruckus on the Minute Men forum. While LT wasn't on the list, neither were some other top backs in the AFC, including Chris Brown, Priest Holmes and Jerome Bettis. This is not a slight to LT or those other backs, just an opportunity for fans to voice their opinion on who belongs and who doesn't.
The Rest of the NEWSWIRE can be found here: Patriots News Wire
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