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Jul 27 2014 - Jordy Nelson (Packers), WR Jordy Nelson broke the news himself about his new contract as drills were being run at Green Bay's Nitschke Field Saturday (July 26).
Nelson told his fellow wideouts and the quarterbacks that he took care of the particulars of the four-year, $39 million deal across the street at Lambeau Field shortly before the first practice started.
"I just wanted them to be the first one to know so they didn't have to find out when they came back in here (the Lambeau locker room)," Nelson said after practice.
By the middle of practice, nearly everyone on the team received the news, including head coach Mike McCarthy, who was apprised by general manager Ted Thompson out on the field. Several teammates were quick to congratulate Nelson before practice finished.
"Jordy Nelson is an outstanding football player and a great ambassador for the Green Bay Packers (and) obviously an excellent family man," McCarthy said. "It's something that everybody's excited about and glad to see Jordy will be here for some time."
With Nelson going into the final year of his contract, the new pact has the 29-year-old with the Packers through conditionally the 2018 season. The extension reportedly includes more than $14 million in guaranteed money with a signing bonus of $11.5 million.
"Now, he can buy all the land in Kansas," quarterback Aaron Rodgers quipped about Nelson, a Kansas native. "I'm very happy (for him). It's fun to see guys like that who are incredible teammates, phenomenal players and good guys get rewarded. That's what we've done around here. Guys who have gotten second and third contracts are the guys who, for the most part, have been raised up in the system, done things the right way, the Packer way, and gotten rewarded for it.
"It's fun to see Jordy re-sign for four more (years). I told him that's five (seasons left under contract) for him, and I've got six (years) left. So, we're going to have to do one more (contract extension) after that and stick aroun
Jul 24 2014 - Josh Gordon (Browns), WR Josh Gordon will appeal a pending one-year suspension in a meeting with NFL officials on Aug. 1, according to an ESPN report.
Gordon has a string off off-field incidents since entering the NFL as a Supplemental Draft pick in 2012, and is facing a yearlong suspension following another failed drug test this offseason. The suspension was reported leading up to the NFL Draft in May, two months before Gordon was charged with a DWI in North Carolina earlier this month.
The Browns open training camp Saturday, and will not know Gordon's status for at least another week. However, coach Mike Pettine made it clear that the franchise has no intention of giving up on the troubled receiver.
Jul 24 2014 - Justin Blackmon (Jaguars), WR Justin Blackmon was arrested in Edmond, Okla., and charged him with possession of marijuana, according to multiple reports.
Blackmon was reportedly stopped for a traffic violation, and police officers smelled the odor of marijuana coming from his car. A search found marijuana, and Blackmon was taken into custody.
It is the third arrest for Blackmon, who is currently suspended indefinitely by the franchise. following his third violation of the NFL's substance-abuse policy.
Blackmon served a four-game suspension at the start of last season following his second violation during the 2012 offseason.
The former Oklahoma State star caught 64 passes for 865 yards and five touchdowns in 2012, but has run into a string of off-field issues that have put his NFL future in jeopardy. He was arrested in 2010 in Oklahoma on a DUI charge that was reduced to underage drinking and again in 2012 following a traffic stop in which he failed a breath test that showed his blood alcohol content to be three times the legal limit.
Jul 24 2014 - Ray Rice (Ravens), RB Ray Rice has been suspended for the first two games of the regular season by the NFL following his offseason arrest on an assault charge stemming from an incident with his fiancee, according to ESPN.
Rice stands to lose more than $470,000 in base salary and will also be fined $58,000, per the report.
Rice can practice with the team and play in preseason games, with the suspension beginning Aug. 30. He is eligible to be reinstated Sept. 12, meaning Rice will miss a pair of key home games against division rivals - the season opener against the Cincinnati Bengals and a Week 2 tilt against the Pittsburgh Steelers on Thursday night.
Jul 23 2014 - Rob Gronkowski (Patriots), TE Rob Gronkowski, who had set a goal of returning from a torn anterior cruciate ligament by September, was fully cleared for training camp.
The first team practice is scheduled for Thursday, and coach Bill Belichick confirmed Gronkowski will be on the field, not on the physically unable to perform list.
"He's been here," coach Bill Belichick said Wednesday at Gillette Stadium. "He would be ineligible to (appear on PUP list) because he's been cleared to play."
Gronkowski hurt his knee Week 14 against the Cleveland Browns. His entire 2013 calendar year was filled by injuries and rehab, including multiple surgeries on his forearm and a procedure on his back. He missed six games in 2013 and was limited into the regular season.
The 25 year old, who also had back issues at the University of Arizona, is a two-time Pro Bowl selection with 42 career touchdown receptions since entering the NFL as a second-round pick in 2010.
"It's a positive," guard Logan Mankins said. "We were all hoping Gronk would have a good recovery and so far he has. We'll just see where he is and how good he is right now. It's great to have him out there. He's a dynamic blocker. He does a great job blocking and he's a big target for Tom (Brady) to get the ball to when he gets open. Any time you can have Gronk on the field, it's great."
Belichick did not disclose a snap count or any limitations for Gronkowski in training camp, but it's possible he'll be a spectator for preseason games.
"Rob has always worked hard," Belichick said. "He worked hard as a rookie, so he has always worked hard when he's here. I can't speak for the rest of the time, but from what we've seen he has been consistent."
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