Gronkowski pops into White House briefing

The Latest: Gronkowski pops into White House briefing

The Latest: Gronkowski pops into White House briefing

President Trump welcomed the New England Patriots to the South Lawn of the White House Wednesday to congratulate them on their fifth Super Bowl championship.

Trump has been a supporter of the New England team for years and has a very close relationship with both Kraft and Belichick, which was evident in each of their remarks as they addressed the audience gathered on the lawn.

A notable absence was quarterback Tom Brady, who made a morning announcement citing "family matters to attend to". He posted a wedding photo of his parents on Instagram and wished them a happy anniversary. The projected range of attendees was thought to be somewhere between 27 (the number of players that showed up for the Patriots visit to the White House in 2005) and 36 (the number that showed up to the White House visit in 2004).

Several players this year alluded to U.S. politics as motivation for not attending: "I just don't feel welcome in that house", running back LeGarrette Blount reportedly told the Rich Eisen radio show.

The team's visit also comes on the same day that former Patriot, Aaron Hernandez reportedly hanged himself in a MA correctional facility. He was serving a life-sentence for first-degree murder.

Ex-French Diplomat, Accused Of Raping Daughter, Acquitted By Bengaluru Court
The case had shot to limelight since it involved a foreign diplomat creating a diplomatic standoff. Pascal Mazurier had been accused of raping his three year old daughter by his wife in 2012.

A team spokesman said the Patriots were aware of the reports of Hernandez's death but the club wasn't expected to comment. Tight end Rob Gronkowski stuck his head in the door of the briefing room as Press Secretary Sean Spicer was holding a televised press briefing.

Gronk just strolled in, asked if they needed help, laughed, and then left. "Bob I want to commend you for building such an extraordinary organization".

The president has a close friendship both team owner Robert Kraft and Belichick, referencing a letter of encouragement the coach wrote him before a crucial primary contest past year. However, many members of the team, including quarterback Tom Brady, were noticeably absent.

Kraft, who has been incredibly outspoken about his friendship with Trump, took the overcoming odds narrative to the extreme. Kraft called the president "a very good friend of mine for over 25 years", and "as mentally tough and hard-working as anybody I know".

President Trump was a few minutes away from beginning his story about Bill Belichick's letter of encouragement - "This handsome letter", Trump would say - when he began listing a few of his favorite memories from Super Bowl LI.

Markets Right Now: Banks lead early stock gains
NAVIENT NUDGES DOWN: Student loan servicing company Navient announced a smaller profit and less revenue than investors hoped. USA crude futures CLc1 fell 3.8 percent to settle at $50.44, while Brent crude futures LCOc1 dropped 3.6 percent to $52.93.

Kraft's company donated $1 million to Trump's presidential inaugural committee, according to filings released Tuesday. Others include the owners of the Houston Texans, the Washington Redskins, the Jacksonville Jaguars and the LA Rams.

The New York Times compared Wednesday's attendance with the turnout in 2015, and even though the Trump administration isn't the best with crowd estimates, the difference is stark.

Blount-who is now an unsigned free agent-and McCourty both previously said in interviews they wouldn't take part in the festivities because they didn't feel welcome at the White House. "I believe certain people might feel accepted there while others won't". That includes Brady in 2015.

"Brady did visit the White House with the Michigan Wolverines after their 1997 national championship win, as well as the Patriots' first three Super Bowl victories".

James Gunn to write, direct 'Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3'
The success of the first film means that everyone has been anticipating the upcoming follow-up, Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 . He wrote that the US leg of the press tour will begin this week, and he will then head to Europe to publicize the film there.

Recommended News

  • Oil edges lower; US crude supply data seen as bearish

    West Texas Intermediate for May delivery slipped 41 cents to $52 a barrel at 11:30 a.m. on the New York Mercantile Exchange. The declines are welcome news after steady gains earlier this year that pushed petroleum inventories to record levels.
    Stocks, dollar under pressure after soft US data

    Stocks, dollar under pressure after soft US data

    Benchmark Brent crude futures were down 43 cents at $55.46 a barrel, while USA crude futures were down 45 cents at $52.73. Worries over the upcoming French elections as well as softer USA economic data added to the bearish sentiment.

    Trump to meet Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas on May 3

    Ahead of Abbas's visit to Washington, a high-ranking Palestinian delegation is scheduled to arrive in U.S.to prepare for the visit.
  • New York Yankees vs

    New York Yankees vs

    RHP Juan Minaya (right abdominal strain) is throwing batting practice and could start a rehab assignment in the next week. Willy Garcia hit a two-run homer for Charlotte against Pawtucket, a day after he was optioned to Chicago's Triple-A team.
    Venezuelans gear up for major march against Maduro

    Venezuelans gear up for major march against Maduro

    Around 40 opposition protesters accused of committing acts of violence during the past week's demonstrations are now being held. They included state workers like Leidy Marquez, who was bused in from Tachira state on the other side of teh country.
    Mariners managers Scott Servais discusses his team avoiding a no-hitter

    Mariners managers Scott Servais discusses his team avoiding a no-hitter

    Andriese (1-0), who had lost seven of nine decisions dating to June 25, allowed one run and four hits over six-plus innings. But with one swing, Haniger broke up the no-hitter, sending the crowd into an extended applause for the first time.
  • Tech sector splits on visa changes after 457 dumped

    Tech sector splits on visa changes after 457 dumped

    Earlier, the Labor leader hit out at Malcolm Turnbull's "cosmetic" announcement, questioning what impact the changes will have. Employers who hire foreign workers will have to contribute to a new training fund to support apprenticeships and traineeships.
    Muslim Jakarta governor candidate ahead in election, early count shows

    Muslim Jakarta governor candidate ahead in election, early count shows

    Ahok congratulated his opponent and told a televised news conference: 'We now will come together and forget this campaign. Polls opened Wednesday morning and several million of Jakarta's residents are expected to vote.

    Dylan Hartley set to captain England in Argentina after Lions squad omission

    Obviously it's a shock to me, I only found out an hour ago, but I'm truly over the moon. And we are playing the best team, back-to-back world champions in their own backyard.
  • United CEO says no one will be fired for dragging incident

    United CEO says no one will be fired for dragging incident

    Munoz, who came under fire for his initial response to the episode, said he takes full responsibility for what happened. The company is now conducting a review of its policies on overbooked flights - with details expected later this month.

    North Korean mock-up birthday video shows missiles blowing up US

    Pyongyang said it may test missiles on a weekly basis, and warned of "all-out war" if the USA takes military action. The launches are consistent with North Korea's long history of provocative behavior.
    Dam managers made missteps in handling crisis

    Dam managers made missteps in handling crisis

    Then, with the lake behind the dam swelling from rain and runoff, water began running down a never-before-used backup spillway. The group that includes six House members from California said a changing climate raises risks for aging dams around the U.S.

We are pleased to provide this opportunity to share information, experiences and observations about what's in the news.
Some of the comments may be reprinted elsewhere in the site or in the newspaper.
Thank you for taking the time to offer your thoughts.