NFL notebook: Patriots' Brady gets 3-year extension worth $27M
Tom Brady will be a Patriot until he's 40 years old.
Brady agreed to a three-year contract extension with New England on Monday, a person familiar with the contract told the Associated Press. The extension is worth about $27 million and will free up nearly $15 million in salary cap room for the team, which has several younger players it needs to re-sign or negotiate new deals with.
The 35-year-old two-time league MVP was signed through 2014 and has said he wants to play at least five more years.
A three-time Super Bowl champion, Brady will make far less in those three seasons than the going rate for star quarterbacks. Brady currently has a four-year, $72 million deal with $48 million guaranteed.
Drew Brees and Peyton Manning are the NFL's highest-paid quarterbacks at an average of $20 million and $18 million a year, respectively.
Brady has made it clear he wants to finish his career with the Patriots, whom he led to Super Bowl wins for the 2001, '03 and '04 seasons, and losses in the big game after the '07 and '11 seasons. By taking less money in the extension and redoing his current contract, he's hopeful New England can surround him with the parts to win more titles.
Among the Patriots' free agents are top receiver Wes Welker and his backup, Julian Edelman; right tackle Sebastian Vollmer; cornerback Aqib Talib; and running back Danny Woodhead.
Top prospect from Utah has heart ailment
Top draft prospect Star Lotulelei will undergo more extensive heart tests when he returns to Utah.
Doctors at the NFL's Scouting Combine in Indianapolis found the star defensive tackle and likely high pick has a heart condition, Lotulelei's agent, Bruce Tollner, confirmed in a series of emails with the Associated Press.
Tollner said Lotulelei wouldn't take questions regarding the diagnosis yet. But the 6-foot-2, 311-pound defensive tackle still plans to do a full workout in front of scouts at his regularly scheduled Pro Day on March 20.
ESPN first reported Lotulelei has a left ventricle that isn't operating at maximum capacity. His professional future could depend heavily on what doctors find.
The Utah standout is considered one of the best prospects in this year's draft. He is trying to join Alex Smith as the only players from Utah to go No. 1 overall; San Francisco took Smith with the top pick in 2005.
“You're going to have to get all kinds of second and third opinions,” Cardinals coach Bruce Arians said.
Eagles release DTs Jenkins, Patterson
The Eagles released veteran defensive tackles Cullen Jenkins and Mike Patterson.
Jenkins signed a five-year, $30 million contract with the Eagles in 2011 and started every game the past two seasons. He was due to make $5.5 million this season, but rebuilding Philadelphia cut the 32-year-old Jenkins.
After spending the first seven seasons of his NFL career with Green Bay, Jenkins left for Philadelphia. He had 5 1⁄2 sacks in 2011 and four in '12.
Patterson, the team's longest-tenured player, spent eight seasons with the Eagles. A first-round draft pick in 2005 out of USC, the 29-year-old Patterson played in 115 games with 99 starts. He made 551 tackles, 16 1⁄2 sacks, had four forced fumbles and seven fumble recoveries.
Patterson underwent brain surgery in January 2012 but returned to the Eagles for five games last season. He was diagnosed with a brain malformation in August after suffering a seizure during a training camp practice.
Baker to lead Houston's Super Bowl bid
Former U.S. Secretary of State James Baker will lead Houston's bid to host the Super Bowl in 2017.
Baker will be the honorary chairman of the city's bid committee. He served as Secretary of State under President George H.W. Bush from 1989-92 and was Bush's chief of staff from August 1992-January 1993.
NFL owners are expected to vote in May on host sites for the 2016 and '17 Super Bowls. Miami and San Francisco are competing for the 2016 game, and the runner-up will compete against Houston for the '17 game.