By: Ian Logue
My apologies for the fact there was no links entry yesterday. Thankfully Comcast restored our services late last night, so we’re back in business this morning.
The big news yesterday afternoon was the fact the Patriots made their first major set of cuts, the most notable of which was safety James Sanders.
Monique Walker of the Boston Globe has more on Sanders release, with head coach Bill Belichick telling reporters Monday that it was a tough decision to let him go.
“Tough release there with James Sanders,’’ Belichick said. “James has been a good guy to have on this team. A hard-working kid. He really has developed from the time he came to us as a draft choice from Fresno [State] and he’s been a really solid team player for us but we just, part of the move, needed to release people. But he was a tough one.’’
Dan Duggan of the Boston Herald writes that Sanders was told by Belichick that rather than be traded to somewhere he didn’t want to play, the team opted to simply release him.
“He just said it was time for both of us to move on and wished me the best,” Sanders said. “He said he felt like he owed it to me to release me, instead of trade me to somewhere I didn’t want to go. I don’t know how much of that was true. But that was it.”
Tom Curran of CSNNE writes that it was Sanders injury that ultimately made him a cap casualty after he was only able to participate in four practices this preseason.
Rich Garven of the Worcester Telegram has more on the cuts, which he noted included 11 players in total as the roster begins to take shape.
Karen Guregian writes that the move to cut Sanders has a ‘deep impact’ and puts Brandon Meriweather on the spot because Sanders was his safety net.
The Atlanta Constitution reports that Sanders is set to make a visit to the Falcons on Tuesday.
Mike Rodak of ESPNBoston.com has more on the rest of the guys who were cut, which included snaper Matt Katula, and Jonathan Wilhite.
Rodak also has an entry on the Patriots players who are eligible for the practice squad should they be cut and clear waivers when the team is forced to make their final moves next week.
Chris Forsberg of ESPN Boston has an article on the fact that head coach Bill Belichick was forced to have the team work at an undisclosed facility due to the fact there was no power at Gillette Stadium for most of yesterday.
Forsberg also has some quotes from Deion Branch, and Andre Carter in this entry.
Jeff Howe of NESN has an article on the fact that it was a turbulent flight back for the players, with wide receiver Jeremy Ross pointing out that the turbulence was ‘no joke’ in a tweet around 3am that night before the buses pulled into the stadium at around 4am.
Christopher Price of WEEI writes that New England is moving on from their ugly loss to the Lions, with several players – including linebacker Jerod Mayo – talking about the fact they simply didn’t play well.
“We were out there — we knew how bad the game was. We just didn’t make a good game plan,” said linebackerJerod Mayo. “We learned a lot from the film and that’s one thing that we’ll take with the loss. We learned a lot, and hopefully we can move forward in a positive direction.”
Patriots.com has Mayo’s complete conference call transcript.
On Sunday I had an entry on the fact that Branch has yet to have a single reception so far during the preseason, and it looks like everyone else was thinking the same thing on Monday because that was a topic of conversation by several of the other local writers.
Rich Thompson of the Boston Herald has an article on the fact that Branch isn’t concerned about it, and he’s more focused on helping his team work out the kinks offensively.
“My job is to go in there and execute plays,” Branch said. “Definitely you want the ball, but we understand, and I understand, what we are doing as far as working the kinks out of the offense. Right now I’m not stressed over the fact that I haven’t caught a ball.”
Tim Britton of the Providence Journal has his ‘notebook’, which also leads off with Branch – who said that he’s got plenty of confidence that Tom Brady will eventually be able to find him if he needs him.
Patriots.com has Branch’s complete conference call transcript.
Steven Sanchez of the Taunton Gazette has an article on Leigh Bodden and Devin McCourty, who are ready to try and be leaders for New England’s secondary this season.
Paul Kenyon of the Providence Journal writes that McCourty admitted that Saturday night’s game wasn’t a good one for the starters.
Danny Woodhead was on WEEI yesterday and talked about a variety of topics, including the tough hit he took two weeks ago down in Tampa Bay. You can listen to the audio here.
Christopher Price reports that the Patriots are set to sign James Dearth as their new long-snapper. Dearth will replace Matt Katula, who was released yesterday.
Jack Dickey of Deadspin.com has a column wondering why Bill Belichick has been stockpiling mediocre Jets players this offseason.
Greg Bedard of the Boston Globe takes a really good in-depth look back at Saturday night’s debacle, and points out that on lions quarterback Matthew Safford’s 16 dropbacks, Stafford’s average release time was 2.07 seconds. Almost everything was a three-step drop, and throw on first read. Seven of his passes got off in under 2 seconds. There’s plenty more in this entry – so check it out.
Tom Curran also has ’48 lines’ from the loss in this entry, which is also pretty interesting.
Rich Garven of the Worcester Telegram has an article on tight end Will Yeatman, who he believes may no longer be a long-shot to make the roster.
Monique Walker of the Globe has an article on the fact guys like Albert Haynesworth and Shaun Ellis may see the field this week against the Giants during New England’s final exhibition game.
Jeff Howe has an entry on Wes Welker, who told his teammates he’s O.K. after hurting his neck making a tackle on Brady’s interception Saturday night.
Howe also has an entry on Tyree Barnes, who was also part of yesterday’s cuts.
And finally CSNNE.com has an article on the fact that there’s a two-part extensive documentary that will air on Belichick’s life next month on Sept 15th at 9pm, and then Sept 22nd at 10pm. Early indications are that it should be fantastic, so make sure you set your DVR’s accordingly.
That’s it for this morning. Be sure and check back, as we should have more later this morning.
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