By: Ian Logue
New England suffered a tough loss at the hands of Eric Mangini and the Cleveland Browns yesterday, and there is certainly plenty of misery in the media this morning – so here are today’s headlines.
Tom Brady was up early this morning with WEEI’s Dennis & Callahan, and said he knew the team was “in for a dog fight”. The transcript isn’t yet available, but you can listen to it on demand via this link.
Jeff Howe of NESN.com points out that the Patriots now have an added challenge of trying to monitor the health of kicker Stephen Gostkowski, who suffered a “thigh” injury yesterday and had to leave the game. He also reports on some of the others who were injured Sunday.
Mike Reiss takes a look at wide receiver Wes Welker, who stepped in during Gostkowski’s absence and kicked an extra point following their second touchdown yesterday.
Reiss also takes a look at a couple of candidates who could come in and fill in for him in the event he’s not able to return this week.
Reiss writes in another piece that the Patriots got knocked back a notch following yesterday’s 34-14 loss.
The Boston Herald syndicated a piece this morning from the Akron Beacon Journal on runningback Peyton Hillis, who did a number on New England’s defense yesterday after racking up 184 yards rushing against them.
Shalise Manza Young writes that Mangini “the comedian” showed up after his team handed Belichick an embarrassing loss yesterday.
Monique Walker of the Boston Globe writes that it all started to unravel quickly for New England from the start of the game, and the players admitted afterwards that it was a poor week of preparation that ultimately led to the loss.
The Globe also has a piece on former Patriot tight end Ben Watson, who had one catch for 24-yards in yesterday’s game but is Cleveland’s receiving leader.
Greg Bedard of the Globe writes that the work now begins for the Patriots, who up until yesterday managed to hide the fact that their defense was ranked 28th in the NFL. That obviousy ended yesterday, with linebacker Jerod Mayo calling it an “awakening”.
The Herald has the “Problem of the Game”, which resulted in the defense getting completely run over yesterday.
Ron Borges has the “best and worst” of yesterday’s game, and gives his take on several different situations from Sunday’s loss.
Borges also writes that Mangini outdid Belichick yesterday, and has a lot of interesting comments (as usual) after this loss.
Larry Brown writes that Mangini got the better of his old mentor yesterday, and Belichick gave a weak handshake. He also writes that Belichick ended up giving motivation to Cleveland thanks to his head games from earlier in the week.
Karen Guregian writes that Hillis did a good job against a Patriots defensive line, who up until yesterday hadn’t allowed a runningback to gain 100-yards against them.
Guregian also writes that the Patriots walked out of Cleveland “battered and exposed” after yesterday’s blowout loss to the Browns.
One guy who struggled mightily from the start of the game was tight end Rob Gronkowski, who muffed a fair catch on the second kickoff of the game which lead to a touchdown for Cleveland. Ian Rapoport writes that after the game, Gronkowski owned up to his mistakes in what was just an awful game for the rookie
Mike Rodak of ESPNBoston.com breaks down yesterday’s first quarter, which fell heavily in favor of the Browns after New England gained just 21 yards, 10 of which came from Tom Brady.
And finally Christopher Price has “10 Things We Learned From Yesterday’s game” which is a terrific in-depth look at many different areas, including the fact that the Patriots don’t yet have a reliable option in the passing game and that ended up being their undoing yesterday.
That’s it for this morning. We’ll have more later on, so be sure and check back throughout the day for updates.