Organised team activities are kicking off around the league, and it's last years Super Bowl losers that all the attention is on.
The Patriots' tumultuous offseason of rumours seemingly won't end as two of the game's biggest stars failed to report for the beginning of OTA's, Monday.
More worryingly for the Pats, the star pair's hold outs don't seem to be ending any time soon.
It might be a little too early to hit the panic button for Patriots fans though, given that attendance over the ten days of OTA's is entirely voluntary.
However, the public disharmony that has emerged from sources close to the organisation this offseason make this situation a little more uncomfortable than it would maybe have been in other years.
Neither Tom Brady nor Rob Gronkowski were present as New England kicked off it's workouts, and it's possible that both of them will hold out for the entire duration of OTA's.
NFL Insider Ian Rapoport reported that the Pro Bowl duo would likely attend the team's minicamp from June 5-7 though.
Both men are rumoured to be seeking new deals ahead of the 2018 season, which is the obvious explanation for their absences.
Brady has two years remaining on his current deal and is only set to earn a base salary of $14 million this year, far below the standard market price for top tier QB's in the climate of 2018.
Gronkowski is only the fourth highest paid player at his position, despite having an excellent argument for being the best tight end in football, and is only scheduled to make $8 million this season.
Gronk's deal is in the works though, and Pats fans will want to keep an eye on the fourth day of OTA's for a possible return to the practice field for their dynamic TE.
That's because any new deal he negotiates can't pass until exactly one year after the date he signed his last extension, which was May 24th 2017.
So, it's likely that Gronk will participate at some point.
Brady on the other hand seems perfectly comfortable working out on his own, with his trainer Alex Guerrero, instead of building an early rapport with the flurry of new receivers on the roster.
It's a situation that won't bother the team for now, especially given Brady's ability to keep himself in shape, but they sure won't want to see it drag out any longer after OTA's come to an end.
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