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Monday, March 11, 2013
Patriots-based free agency chatter

By Mike Reiss

Sharing some links, thoughts and analysis on some of the Patriots-based chatter during the "legal tampering period" of free agency:

1. Kraft -- Brady wants to play beyond 40. Mike Garafolo of USA Today caught up with Patriots owner Robert Kraft in New York, and the topic of Tom Brady's contract extension came up. The extension takes Brady to his 40th birthday, although Kraft thinks that might not be the end point for Brady. "We have a contract now until he's 40, but he'd like to play beyond that," Kraft says.

2. Will 'Skins be competition for Patriots with Talib? The Patriots hope to re-sign cornerback Aqib Talib, although the presence of Talib's former coach (Raheem Morris) and general manager (Bruce Allen) could make the Redskins a contender for Talib's services. Mike Garafolo of USA Today touches on this dynamic. One wonders if the Redskins will have the cap space to contend for Talib's services.

3. Getting to know Desmond Bryant. Yahoo! Sports NFL columnist Jason Cole tweeted that Raiders defensive lineman Desmond Bryant has multiple teams interested in him, including the Patriots. Over the last three days, we've treaded lightly when it comes to tweets and stories about the Patriots "expressing interest" in a player; the idea is to pass along the information while noting the context that any player/agent would naturally want to pass along word that there are multiple suitors. In this case, Bryant (6-6, 311) has the type of physical makeup and upside that could be appealing to the Patriots. He's 27 and entering his fifth season.

4. Cruz control for Patriots. CBS Sports NFL Insider Jason La Canfora passed along word that "several sources believed the Patriots would make a run at [Giants receiver Victor] Cruz, but that was prior to Cruz changing agents recently and going with Tom Condon." The Giants are tendering Cruz at the first-round level as a restricted free agent. It would be hard to imagine the Patriots getting involved at that draft-compensation level, as well as dishing out the big contract.

5. Carter finds home in Calgary. Patriots 2011 sixth-round draft choice Markell Carter is attempting to revive his career in the Canadian Football League, having signed with Calgary today. Carter, who spent most of his rookie season on the Patriots' practice squad, didn't hook on with another NFL team after the Patriots released him in 2012.