Patriots running back Rex Burkhead agreed to a revised contract Tuesday that will provide the team almost $1 million in needed cap room, a source told the Boston Herald.

Burkhead will receive $550,000 guaranteed upon signing and drop his base salary from $2.5 million to $1.05 million. He can also make $400,000 in roster bonuses. The reworked deal affords Burkhead more guaranteed money, while also acting as a pay cut by reducing his total potential earnings for the season. Burkhead’s new guarantees, however, should secure him a roster spot.

Last year, Burkhead led all Patriots running backs with a 4.6-yards-per-carry average. Releasing Burkhead outright this summer would have created nearly $3 million in cap space, according to Over The Cap. His contract is set to expire after 2020.

Instead, the Patriots now hold almost $1.3 million in room and have retained their most versatile running back. Entering the week, they ranked last in the NFL in cap space. The team is likely to pursue more avenues for creating cap room, having previously held between $3 and $8 million in most years for in-season expenditures.

EAGLES: Philadelphia wide receiver DeSean Jackson has apologized after backlash for sharing anti-Semitic posts on social media over the weekend.

“My post was definitely not intended for anybody of any race to feel any type of way, especially the Jewish community,” Jackson said in a video he posted on Instagram on Tuesday. “I post things on my story all the time, and just probably never should have posted anything Hitler did, because Hitler was a bad person, and I know that.”

The team issued the following statement: “We have spoken with DeSean Jackson about his social media posts. Regardless of his intentions, the messages he shared were offensive, harmful, and absolutely appalling. They have no place in our society, and are not condoned or supported in any way by the organization. We are disappointed and we reiterated to DeSean the importance of not only apologizing but also using his platform to take action to promote unity, equality, and respect. We are continuing to evaluate the circumstances and are committed to continuing to have productive and meaningful conversations with DeSean, as well as all of our players and staff, in order to educate, learn, and grow.”

The NFL also issued a statement, saying: “DeSean’s comments were highly inappropriate, offensive and divisive and stand in stark contrast to the NFL’s values of respect, equality and inclusion. We have been in contact with the team which is addressing the matter with DeSean.”

Jackson, a three-time Pro Bowl pick, is in his second stint in Philadelphia, returning last season to the team that drafted him in the second round of the 2008 draft.

BROWNS: Cleveland has renegotiated defensive end Olivier Vernon’s massive contract for next season, a person familiar with the talks told the Associated Press on Tuesday.

Vernon’s future with the Browns seemed uncertain as he was set to make $15.25 million – the largest current one-year contract on Cleveland’s roster – in 2020. But the club reworked his deal and he’ll earn $11 million, said the person who spoke on condition of anonymity because the team is not publicly disclosing the agreement.

ESPN was first to report Vernon will get a $7 million signing bonus, $3.75 million base salary, $250,000 workout bonus and $2 million in incentives. The 29-year-old Vernon joined the Browns last season after coming over from the New York Giants in the blockbuster trade that brought wide receiver Odell Beckham Jr. to Cleveland.

JOE STALEY has joined the ever-growing list of retired NFL offensive linemen whose bodies have undergone significant changes since stepping away from football.

The former 49ers great told ESPN he’s lost 50 pounds since announcing his retirement in April following 13 years in the NFL. Now freed from the daily rigors of a diet designed to maintain girth, Staley has also lost four inches off his waistline in less than three months.

The new-look Staley said he donated five garbage bags of his old clothes while also restocking his collection of belts now that he’s gone from a size 40 waist to 36.

 

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