Morning sports update: Adam Schefter thinks Rob Gronkowski taught the Patriots a lesson regarding Tom Brady’s future

"That's not the way that organization operates."

Tom Brady and Rob Gronkowski during the Patriots' divisional round playoff win over the Chargers in 2019. (Photo by Maddie Meyer/Getty Images)

Tonight the Celtics face the Magic in Orlando at 7 p.m. Boston is trying to extend its recent winning streak to three in a row.

In the Australian Open, Serena Williams fell in the third round, but 15-year-old Coco Gauff defeated defending champion Naomi Osaka to advance. Her post-match interview produced a humorous soundbite:

Adam Schefter’s latest view on Tom Brady’s free agency: Technically, the Patriots have until March 16 before Tom Brady can begin speaking with other teams in the “legal tampering period” of NFL free agency. But as ESPN’s NFL insider Adam Schefter pointed out, New England is likely to want clarification from Brady before that.


The reason goes back partly to a missed opportunity in the offseason a year ago when tight end Rob Gronkowski waited until March 24 to officially announce his retirement.

“Here’s the situation: I don’t believe the New England Patriots are waiting until March 16 to get an answer from Tom Brady,” Schefter explained on ESPN Thursday. “Last year, Rob Gronkowski wound up retiring in late March. I don’t know the conversations they did and didn’t have before, but New England missed the window on free agent tight ends. So I don’t think they’re going to let Tom Brady go to free agency, all of a sudden, sign with Team X, and then on March 20, say ‘Well, what do we do at quarterback now?’ That’s not the way that organization operates.”


Trivia: Who was the last quarterback to start a game for the Patriots who was not originally drafted by the Patriots?

(Answer at the bottom).

Hint: He was given a long-winded nickname by ESPN announcer Chris Berman that was derived from Frankie Ford’s 1959 song, “Sea Cruise.”

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Mel Kiper Jr.’s first mock draft of 2020: With the 23rd pick in the first round of his projected 2020 NFL draft, Kiper has the Patriots selecting Alabama safety Xavier McKinney.

Mikaela Shiffrin won today’s World Cup downhill race in Bansko, Bulgaria: Shiffrin defeated Italian racer Federica Brignone by 0.18 seconds to notch her first win of 2020 and the 65th of her career on the World Cup circuit.


Jarvis Landry survived an epic game of dodgeball to earn an AFC victory:

On this day: In 2003, Paul Pierce scored 45 points against the Nuggets in a bizarre 77-58 win. In a remarkably low scoring game, Pierce outscored the Nuggets 19-11 through the first quarter and had 28 points by himself at halftime, only one behind Denver’s entire roster (29).

Daily highlight: Lamar Jackson nailed the crossbar from 50 yards.

Trivia answer: Scott Secules

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