It's been a different offseason for New England this year, compared to last year's big-name signing spree.
In '08, as today's Providence Journal points out, it's been mostly about keeping the players the team already has, like superstar WR Randy Moss.
"I think a big part of free agency for us was re-signing players we were able to re-sign," head coach Bill Belichick said at last week's NFL meetings. "Randy is one of those. He gave a lot of leadership off the field, outstanding production on the field."
Belichick also acknowledged the losses the team has suffered in the defensive backfield, notably CB Asante Samuel, while hinting that there could be more moves at that position between now and training camp in late July.
"There's certainly going to be a different look to our secondary," Belichick said. "We lost a couple players; we signed four players. We don't really go to camp for another four months, so something could happen between now and then, too. We'll see how it goes.
Belichick, meantime, has recently been helping out old friend Nick Saban at the Alabama Crimson Tide coach's football clinic, according to a story in a Tuscaloosa paper.
Back here in Foxboro, after his record-setting first season with New England, how can WR Wes Welker top his 112-catch performance in '08? Welker told The Boston Globe that he's not really concerned about personal numbers, but more with wins.
"I could care less how many catches it is [this season]. It really doesn't matter," said Welker. "It's about improving and getting better and helping the offense move down the field, and if that means catching 112 catches that is what it means. If it means blocking and running the ball 40 times a game then that is what it needs to be."
There's also a Globe feature on the forthcoming Hall at Patriot Place, where New England football on all levels, from youth to the pros, will soon be on display.