Morning Sports Update

Jakobi Meyers and Ted Karras expressed interest in returning to the Patriots

"I feel I fit in well, but that’s a long way off for now."

Jakobi Meyers
Jakobi Meyers during the Patriots-Bills matchup on Dec. 26. AP Photo/Winslow Townson

The Celtics defeated the Pelicans on Monday, 104-92. Jayson Tatum’s 27 points helped Boston mount a comeback after a slow first quarter.

And tonight, the Bruins host the Hurricanes at 7 p.m. Today is Willie O’Ree Day in Boston, ahead of his jersey retirement tonight (more on this below).

Patriots players on free agency: Following the Patriots’ loss to the Bills on Saturday, many players now have to ponder uncertain futures as free agency looms.

Two of those players, wide receiver Jakobi Meyers and offensive lineman Ted Karras, shared their thoughts on potentially staying in New England during end-of-season media availabilities on Monday.

Advertisement:

Asked if he would like to stay with the Patriots, Meyers said he would “definitely” like to see it happen.

“I feel like I’ve gotten better, as a player, a person, all of it,” Meyers, who joined the Patriots as an undrafted free agent in 2019, told reporters. “I think about my first day in the league and just where I was mentally, I just wasn’t who I am today. I just feel like I’m a much better player, a much better man. When you got a situation like that, it’s something you want to hold on to.”

Still, the 25-year-old Meyers knows the NFL is a business. As a restricted free agent, the Patriots will be able to match any offer for Meyers. New England could potentially put a draft pick tender on Meyers, forcing any team that tries to sign him to send a first or second-round pick to the Patriots as compensation.

After posting career highs in catches (83), yards (866), and finally adding his first two receiving touchdowns, Meyers understands that there are components of free agency that go beyond what he wants as an individual.

“At the end of the day, all I can do is control what I can control,” Meyers said. “I felt like I did that to the best of my ability this season, just trying to go out there and play hard and play tough. The rest of that is in somebody else’s hands. There’s nothing that I can really stress about right now. I’m just excited about whatever opportunity comes my way. I’m going to attack it head on.”

Advertisement:

Karras, 28, echoed Meyers’s thoughts. He is set to become an unrestricted free agent.

“I would always love to come back,” he explained.

“I know this isn’t the time to make any of those decisions, and I know that the organization is going to look at everything,” Karras noted. “Whatever happens, happens. I understand it’s a business. Obviously, [I] love being here and love the people here. I feel I fit in well, but that’s a long way off for now.”

Both players won’t be able to sign contracts elsewhere until the new league year officially begins on March 16.

More from Boston.com:

From the weekend: Bill Belichick’s day-after press conference following the Patriots’ postseason loss.

On this day: In 1958, O’Ree made his first appearance for the Bruins and in doing so became the first Black player in National Hockey League history. Boston defeated the Canadiens 3-0.

O’Ree’s No. 22 will be retired by the Bruins tonight on the 64th anniversary of his momentous debut.

Willie O'Ree Boston Globe 1958

Daily highlight: Russell Westbrook threw down a thunderous dunk on Rudy Gobert in Monday’s 101-95 win over the Jazz.

Conversation

This discussion has ended. Please join elsewhere on Boston.com