Archive for September 13th, 2010

Three Videos From Opening Day

For those of you who couldn’t make it to the stadium yesterday, I had a couple of people point out these videos that were shot at the stadium yesterday and posted to YouTube.com, so I thought I’d share them here.

Here’s a video of the Patriots taking the field, along with the National Anthem and the Jets flying over the stadium:

Here’s another video shot from the stands of the Patriots first touchdown of the season:

Another shot of the flyover from the author of the above video:

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Kraft: Patriots “Never Had a Deal With Logan”

Patriots owner Robert Kraft surprised Dale & Holley of WEEI on Monday afternoon for “Patriots Monday”, and sat down for an interview to discuss the story that came out yesterday from ESPN’s Adam Schefter regarding disgruntled guard Logan Mankins.

In the interview the Patriots owner said that the chain of events didn’t quite play out like the earlier report from Schefter had indicated. According to the ESPN report, it had been said that a deal was reached with the veteran guard, and that it fell apart over the the team’s request for a public apology. Kraft says that that wasn’t the case at all.

“There is a misconception that we have had a deal with Logan Mankins,” Kraft said. “We have never had a deal with Logan Mankins.

“I hate violating a private conversation but I think it’s worthy because it speaks to this issue that — I got a call three weeks go, maybe, something around that time, from Logan — and he apologized to me for the comments that he made in the public media,” Kraft explained during his interview. “He said that he regretted he did it. He knew in retrospect that they were not true. And I accepted his apology because he is a high quality guy.

“I also said to him, ‘You know Logan, it would be nice if that was made public because I’m hoping we do a deal with you. And I don’t want people to think that the way you do a deal is to say something that’s not true or involve ownership.’ ”

Regarding the public apology, Kraft said that Mankins admitted he felt bad and that he’d be willing to do it, and claimed he would do so in the event the team re-signed him, or even if he got traded elsewhere.

“He understood that and he said ‘Look, Mr. Kraft, I feel bad,” said Kraft. “I will correct what I said either when I sign with the New England Patriots or if I get traded and sign somewhere else.’ And he said that ‘My hope and intention is that I’ll be a Patriot and go into the Patriots hall of fame.’ And I said the same thing to him. And then there’s been a negotiation but we have never had a deal.”

Listening to Kraft’s comments on Monday, things sound like they’ve at least reached an amicable point between the two sides. Being a man of principle as it’s believed that Mankins is, one would have to believe he’ll be happy with the fact that Kraft took the time to go on the air and set the record straight – as it paints Mankins in a much better light.

Whether or not it will help the two sides reach an agreement remains to be seen, but at least after hearing this news the chances now seem a little better than they did following what we heard yesterday.

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Quick Patriots Notes & Headlines: Sept 13th

A day after yesterday’s 38-24 win over the Bengals, the game seems to have changed the outlook for most people who were initially skeptical about New England’s chances this season.  

Coming into the game a lot of people wondered if their young defense would be able to shut down the passing game of opposing offenses, but in their first showing things seemed to work out pretty well.  Bill Belichick’s defensive unit held the Bengals to just three first half points as New England took a 24-3 lead into the locker room at halftime.

After taking another look, here are some other notes worth mentioning from yesterday as we start turning the page toward New England’s upcoming game against the New York Jets this weekend:

  • The Patriots still managed to put up 38 points despite not having wide receiver Julian Edelman, who missed Sunday’s game with a foot injury.  Edelman tried to fight his way onto the field after spening time with the medical staff prior to the game, but ended up being inactive.
     
  • Unlike Terrell Owens, it’s hard to dislike Bengals receiver Chad Ochocinco.  The veteran showed a lot of class, getting in between a scuffle yesterday between one of his teammates and a Patriots player, and helped mediate a peaceful resolution.  He also showed some more class after he got drilled by safety Brandon Meriweather near the end of the game, but after the play congratulated him on the big hit.
     
    He made a mention of it a few minutes ago on Twitter, tweeting, “Headed to lift weights to get the soreness out, can’t even look to the left thanks to Merriweather, great hit though, i need a neck brace :(”
     
  • In case you didn’t know, Patriots linebacker Gary Guyton, who returned an interception for a touchdown yesterday, has his own website.  Be sure to check out his site GaryGuyton.com, and you can also follow him on Twitter @GaryGuyton59.  If it wasn’t for Twitter, you’d have no idea he spent last night watching Inception.
     
  • Carson Palmer was obviously frustrated after yesterday’s game, and when asked about facing Bill Belichick’s defense, Palmer said,“I haven’t played against anybody better.”
     
  • Heading into this weekend’s game against the Jets, Randy Moss said yesterday that after matching up against Derrelle Revis last year and struggling, Moss claims that he spent his offseason working to elevate his game thanks to the Jets defensive back.

“I prided my offseason on Revis,” said Moss during his press conference yesterday.  “He opened my eyes up as a wide receiver, that there was a cornerback out here that I really had to get on my ‘A’ game. So I prided my offseason on staying off of Revis Island.”

A couple of interesting online local Patriots stories to check out this morning:

Christopher Price of WEEI.com has “10 Things We Learned From Yesterday’s Game”, including Welker’s amazing return where he scored two touchdowns and is putting the first football he caught in the endzone somewhere special as it signifies the culmination of the long road he faced back to the football field.

Ron Borges of the Boston Herald looks at how the defense played yesterday, pointing out that despite giving up 21 second half points was still pleased with how things turned out.

And finally, Dan Shaughnessy looks at yesterday’s postgame rant by Moss and calls it one of the best meltdowns he’s ever seen.

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Moss Goes Off After Sunday’s Win

Coming off of Sunday’s 38-24 Patriots win over the Bengals, the players all seemed like they were pretty upbeat and feeling good about what went on out on the football field.

A surprisingly happy Bill Belichick actually spent the majority of his press conference talking about how proud he was of the team’s effort, and how he was going to enjoy this one before moving on to next week’s game against the Jets. That’s pretty rare for a guy who is usually quick to forget about a victory and turn the page, yet he seemed happy with the way things turned out and was going to let himself enjoy it.

Then came Tom Brady, who laughed and also made a joke about the fact that it was “too bad” that the Indianapolis Colts lost their season opener, along with saying that he crashed his car so he could get rid of his “2010″ in order “to get the 2011″ model.

Then in walked Randy Moss, with his hat cocked sideways and his headphones dangling around his neck. Usually Moss is pretty laid back and entertaining when he talks to the media, but not today. The veteran had a lot on his mind and a room full of media members to speak it to, and he didn’t hold very much back.

After a week of hearing people react to his comments where he felt “unappreciated”, he felt the need to use Sunday’s opportunity at the podium to “set the record straight”. If the goal was to improve his public persona and get more people on his side, by all accounts it seems like all he really did was make things worse. He also took another shot at the organization by saying in any line of work, it’s always nice to have the person you work for “tell you that you’re doing a good job” – which apparently he must feel hasn’t happened here in New England.

“If you work for somebody, and you work for somebody unless you’re independent, and your boss comes to you, sometimes you want your boss to tell you that you’re doing a good job. You know what I’m saying?,” explained Moss. “That’s every man or woman in here that works for somebody. You want your boss to be able to say he read your column last night or this morning, he liked your column. And that’s just the way with football. If you do a good job and you think that you’re doing a good job, you want to be appreciated, man. I really don’t think that me personally, I’m appreciated. I don’t want you all to take anything out of context that I’m saying, because I am a man and this is a job. And I take my job very seriously to heart.”

“Me being unhappy doesn’t have nothing to do with me toning my game down. I’m here, and I understand my role. My role is to take the ball deep and take the top off the defense. And I think earlier in the week a lot of people were coming at me long about me being unhappy.”


In the past people had written that Moss quit on his previous teams like the Vikings and Raiders, something he says won’t happen here.

The veteran seems to have a chip on his shoulder from something someone said or wrote last week, and said that he feels like people here in New England “want to see him fail”. He feels it stems from his past transgressions, and was likely referring to stories from in the past where it’s been said that he quit on his pevious teams. But he emphasized that isn’t the case here because he “takes his job seriously”, and was using this press conference as an opportunity to make that point.

“When it comes to football, I take my job seriously, as I’ve said time and time again,” said Moss. “And I think there’s . . . I don’t really want to say here in the organization, but I think here in the area, I think here in the New England area a lot of people don’t want to see me do good. The reason why, I really don’t know, I really don’t care. ”

The other part of the problem appears to have something to do with the fact he’s in the final year of his current deal and doesn’t have a new contract. According to Moss the team has yet to reach out to him about the possibility of him staying in New England, which seems to be the real point the veteran was trying make during his 14-minute tirade.

“I just told you all, if you’re working for somebody and you have a policy, you like to feel appreciated, you know what I mean?” said Moss. “And I’m not saying I’m not appreciated here, but I would like to feel that sometimes, and this is the last year of my contract. There has not been anything discussed, not anything said, no type of letter, nothing.”

When asked about whether or not if he’d sign if he received an offer from the team before the year was over, Moss said if that happened, he’d “accept it”, but he won’t accept it should it come during the offseason once the year is over. At that point Moss claims he’ll go play football somewhere else.

“Look, I don’t want to talk about [my] contract. I just want to let you all know because I’m here to play my last season out. OK? If opportunity later on this season presents itself for me to be a New England Patriot, I will accept that. But if it doesn’t, I must move on.”

“I’ve already shown that I can play still at a high level at age 33. To be offered a contract after this season is over, that would be a smack to my face.”

The veteran also told reporters that he expects a visit with Bill Belichick tomorrow in his office after his rant, but said “if I do, then I’m gonna have to just explain to Bill how I feel.”

When asked about his relationship with Patriots owner Robert Kraft, Moss also called it “fair”, and that he really doesn’t see him enough to be able to call it much more than that.

“It’s fair,” said Moss. “Mr. Kraft is a businessman. He’s not really seen around here a lot during the week. But on the weekends and things like that? Oh yeah, he’s here, and we have a relationship. Is it where I want it to be, or where he wants it to be? I don’t know. I don’t really know how busy his schedule is. But as an owner, we have a fair relationship.”

How this plays out remains to be seen, but for now the veteran says that if the Patriots want him, they need to show it. Otherwise he’s still got a family to take care of and if that means he’ll need to move on, so be it.

“I’m not ready to leave the league yet, but I still have a family to provide for,” said Moss. “So all I’m saying is if I’m wanted here, I want to be here. If I’m not gonna be here, then that’s it. Simple as that. That’s all I’m saying.”

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