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NFL news roundup: Josh Brent retired, HBO's 'Hard Knocks' contract extended

Not a ton of news happened around the NFL on Thursday, but that should change soon as NFL teams open up training camp.

Ronald Martinez

Josh Brent has retired from the NFL to focus on his off-the-field issues, the Dallas Cowboys defensive lineman announced on Thursday. He's had numerous run-ins with the law and is currently awaiting trial on charges of intoxicated manslaughter after allegedly causing the death of fellow Cowboys player Jerry Brown.

"This is the right decision for me, and something that I have given a lot of thought to," Brent said. "I'm at a point where my main focus is about getting priorities in my life in order. Priorities more important than football."

KD Drummond from Blogging the Boys believes this was the right decision for Brent as it should help clear his mind. The move should also clear a couple of other problems that were showing up as he continued to play while dealing with the off-field issues, according to Drummond.

The Cowboys will no longer have the burden of trying to rationalize extending support to a player that even in the face of jail time could not keep himself from breaking the law again; regardless of how minor one may view smoking marijuana.

Brent's actions can possibly be interpreted as him owning up to the situation that he finds himself in and realizing the gravity of the situation he is facing. Should the legal situation turn out in Brent's favor, he simply has to unretire. His rights would still be owned by the Dallas Cowboys and the league could then revisit the possiblity of a suspension.

Hard Knocks series gets mult-year extension with NFL Films, HBO

HBO and the NFL Films crew has extended their deal as it relates to Hard Knocks, it was announced on Thursday. No details were released regarding the length of the deal, but NFL Films' Ross Ketover referred to the extension as a "multi-year extension" and said they'd be around for "a few more years."

The deal isn't one that most NFL teams are likely in love with, considering Hard Knocks has had issues finding teams to appear in the series, but fans seem to still be interested in watching whatever NFL teams are willing to be exposed on HBO.

Ravens first-round pick agrees to contract

Baltimore Ravens first-round pick Matt Elam will sign a four-year deal with the club. The contract is reportedly worth $6.7 million and will include a $3.3 million signing bonus.

Elam is the last Ravens' draft pick to agree to a deal with the team, and, in an interesting twist, the contract was negotiated by Elam himself as the safety never signed an agent. He'll be competing to replace Ed Reed in the Ravens' defensive backfield.

DeSean Jackson is a rapper

Not a great one, but there's a music video and it features (the artist formerly known as?) Snoop Dogg. Fortunately for you, SB Nation did a remix.

More from SB Nation:

Bois: Dante Hall and the legend of the human joystick

DeSean Jackson’s rap single -- with our video remix

Romo wants bigger role in Cowboys’ game planning

On Colin Kaepernick, the ESPY’s and the Dolphins cap

’Hard Knocks’ receives long-term renewal