- Mike Reiss, ESPN New England Patriots reporter
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Cleaning out the Patriots' notebook:
1. The Patriots tweaked the contract of guard Rich Ohrnberger during the season, adding two years so it extends through 2012. Ohrnberger had signed a standard one-year deal when he was promoted off the practice squad in late September, but the sides later extended the deal so it matched up with the four-year deal Ohrnberger had signed as a fourth-round draft choice in 2009. The Patriots potentially have big holes to fill at guard and Ohrnberger -- a player the Patriots traded up to select -- projects to be in the mix.
2. If the Steelers beat the Packers in the Super Bowl, it puts the Patriots in play to be part of the NFL's season-opening game in 2011. In recent years, the defending Super Bowl champion hosts the NFL opener on a Thursday, and the Patriots are scheduled to visit Pittsburgh next season. Pittsburgh also hosts Baltimore, Cincinnati, Cleveland, Jacksonville, Tennessee, St. Louis and Seattle. If you're the NFL's schedule-maker, who would you pick?
3. Former Patriots linebacker Shawn Crable, the 2008 third-round draft choice who never fully emerged and landed with the New York Jets' practice squad this year, has yet to be re-signed by the Jets. The Jets have exclusive negotiating rights with him the rest of the week. While on the subject of the Jets, Rich Cimini of ESPNNewYork.com breaks down some of their big offseason decisions.
4. A nice added bonus for Patriots players in the Pro Bowl: If the AFC team wins, each player will receive $45,000. Even in a losing effort, the payout for each player is $22,500. Not bad for a trip to Hawaii.
5. Thanks for the reminder, Glen Farley. I enjoyed this article on today marking the 25th anniversary of the Patriots' first Super Bowl appearance.
Cleaning out the Patriots' notebook:1. The Patriots tweaked the contract of guard Rich Ohrnberger during the season, adding two years so it extends through 2012.