Fanene bonus hearing set for 22, 23 July

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    Fanene bonus hearing set for 22, 23 July

    Fanene bonus hearing set for July 22, 23

    Jonathan Fanene, Kellen Clemens AP

    A $3.85 million question will be resolved next month.

    Last year, the Patriots signed defensive lineman Jonathan Fanene.  He received a $3.85 million signing bonus, $2.5 million of which already has been paid.

    The Patriots later cut him, claiming that he had failed to disclose a physical condition when he was signed.  A fight under the labor deal resulted in a ruling that the team’s effort to recoup “some or all” of the signing bonus may proceed.

    And proceed it will on July 22 and 23, according to Nick Underhill of

    On those days, a hearing will be held.  Pre-hearing depositions (i.e., sworn testimony) have been conducted, with coach Bill Belichick among the witnesses.  (If he hates press conferences, he’ll love depositions.)

    Court documents, per Underhill, indicate that the Patriots allege Fanene has arthritis in his left knee, and that he hid from the team the fact that needs prescription drugs to practice and play.  A source familiar with the case tells Underhill that the Patriots will have to prove that Fanene was self-medicating without their knowledge to win.

    This suggests that, if the Patriots were giving him the medication during offseason workouts and training camp, they essentially ratified the contract, accepting him for whatever condition he has.  (Unless, of course, it was diabetes.)

    Either way, some or all of a big chunk of money is riding on the outcome.

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    Re: Fanene bonus hearing set for 22, 23 July

    What does this all mean for this year's current team/situation? Does it mean we will get 3.85 million in salary cap relief this season? Or does it simply mean that Kraft will get a nice bonus check to put towards his girlfriend's acting lessons? Because if it helps this team sign some players to help this team win right now, great. If all it means is that Kraft will be able to gold plate his helicoptor blades, I could care less.