Published: Sat, January 06, 2018
Hi-Tech | By Cory Rios

7 things we learned from ESPN's report on Patriots' rift

7 things we learned from ESPN's report on Patriots' rift

It also examined a purported disagreement between Belichick and Kraft regarding the decision to trade Jimmy Garoppolo to the San Francisco 49ers. The story looked at alleged differences between Belichick and Brady regarding the role of Alex Guerrero - the quarterback's fitness coach and business partner - within the team. With the team in the midst of another Super Bowl run, a recent report by ESPN's Seth Wickersham suggests a possible tension within the organization that can sink the dynasty sooner rather than later. In a statement he released jointly with Brady and Kraft, the message was more verbose than Belichick's usual post-game analysis but no less dismissive.

Ultimately, the Patriots had to decide whether to take a second-round pick in 2018 (which could become the next quarterback groomed to eventually replace Brady) or to let it all play out over the next several months, with the worst-case scenario being a Garoppolo departure as an unrestricted free agent, with a third-round compensatory draft pick in 2019.

"For the past 18 years the three of us have enjoyed a very good and productive working relationship".

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The joint statement from Kraft, Belichick and Brady says reports in recent days "have speculated theories that are unsubstantiated, highly exaggerated and flat out inaccurate" and that the three "stand united". It is unfortunate that there is even a need for us to respond to these fallacies.

Guerrero and Brady's work together has reportedly produced confusion on the team as players don't know whether to work with Brady and Guerrero or the team's medical staff. They have won five Super Bowls, appeared in two more, and appeared in the playoffs in all but two of those years. The same thing could have been done with Garoppolo, if the Patriots had been able to carry $22.5 million or so in cap space for Garoppolo until they deal him to a new team. Until then, it's anyone's guess as to whether the team is still together, or is breaking apart.

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