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Patriots release Aaron Hernandez
Aaron Hernandez was arrested Wednesday morning and charged with murder in connection with the shooting death of an acquaintance. Shortly after his arrest, Hernandez was released by the Patriots, who expressed their disappointment at his alleged involvement in the situation. Hernandez's release leaves the Patriots with one fewer option on offense this season, as they try to absorb Wes Welker's departure and Rob Gronkowski's injuries.
The ''breath of fresh air'' storyline is a pretty common one whenever a struggling team gets a new coach. It generally goes like this: The old system that the previous (unsuccessful) coach used was a busted relic, while the system the new (and hopefully successful) coach is cooking up is a work of genius. Most of the time, it's pure hype, but in the case of the Eagles, who seem to be buying into Chip Kelly's fast-break system, there might be something to it. Kelly already has influenced pro offenses with his hurry-up style devised when he was Oregon's coach. We would appreciate you not bringing this up a year from now, in the event Kelly's offense doesn't quite translate to the NFL.
Last season's Eagles looked demoralized as they went 4-12, but a new game plan could turn them around quickly, considering the talent they possess.
Normally, the Patriots are pretty strong at tight end -- one might argue that they have the best 1-2 punch in the league -- but there's reason for concern heading into this season. Rob Gronkowski's battling a mysterious arm infection, and Aaron Hernandez will miss significant time in the preseason after having shoulder surgery. It's difficult to imagine the modern Patriots without a huge emphasis on their tight end passing game, but they might have to make do if neither player can stay healthy.
The modern Patriots are nearly always on the short list of preseason Super Bowl contenders, but if their tight ends are at less than 100 percent, they might be in for a disappointment.
The Patriots have signed Aaron Hernandez to a long-term deal, notably before they gave Wes Welker anything of the sort. Welker has been Tom Brady's primary target in recent years, but is this a sign that he has been moved down the receiver heirarchy?