Tag Archives: Rodney Harrison

WATCH: Rodney Harrison’s Full Patriots Hall Of Fame Honoree Halftime Speech

Robert Alvarez
October 15, 2019 at 9:11 pm ET

The New England Patriots honored 2019 team hall of fame inductee Rodney Harrison at halftime during the teams game with the New York Giants.

Harrison, a two-time Super Bowl champion during his six-year tenure with the Patriots, gave one final speech to Patriots nation thanking them for the honor.

Check out his full speech below.

Before the game, teammate Tedy Bruschi shared his thoughts on another honor that may be in Harrison’s future.

Patriots Training Camp Day 5 Observations

Steve Balestrieri
July 30, 2019 at 8:00 am ET

A short but intense rainstorm slowed the festivities of the day as the Patriots always hold their in-stadium practice for season ticket holders and Foxboro residents after their annual Hall of Fame induction ceremony. 

Rodney Harrison and Leon Gray were enshrined in the Patriots Hall of Fame in the late afternoon but the sun returned and added a steamy aspect to things. But fans didn’t care and they flocked into Gillette Stadium after the ceremonies were over. 

Not Practicing – Julian Edelman and Yodny Cajuste remain on NFI, Edelman, however, was in attendance and later signed autographs after practice was over. Those on PUP remain Demaryius Thomas, Nate Ebner, Cole Croston, and Ken Webster. Croston was seen on the sidelines which may be a good sign for him returning soon. Byron Cowart and Dontrelle Inman were also not in attendance again.

Pat Chung is no longer wearing the red non-contact jersey and now seems a full participant. David Andrews and Isaiah Wynn are still limited. 

And recently acquired offensive lineman JJ Dielman has retired, the third OL to do so this spring after Jared Veldheer, and Brian Schwenke.

The practice was conducted in helmets, shorts, and shirts, with no pads and no contact. In reality, it was more of a walkthru than a spirited practice session after the past two days in full pads. Our observations included:

Demaryius Thomas was on the field, but not taking part in practice. (SBalestrieri)
Edelman and Michael Bennett sign autographs for fans. (SBalestrieri)
The Patriots offense loosens up. (SBalestrieri)
  • Danny Etling was acting as the QB for the scout team while Chung was taking snaps as the scout team running back. In his stead, Obi Melifonwu saw many of Chung’s normal reps, lining up as a deep safety.
  • Perhaps Chung’s lining up was in homage to Rodney Harrison, who Bill Belichick earlier had said that Harrison would line up anywhere in practice. Belichick then compared Harrison and Chung and spoke about how both broke arms in the Super Bowl but wouldn’t leave the field and remained with air casts on to support their teammates. 
  • Conducting practice in a half-speed, walkthru pace can mess with a QB’s timing, Jarrett Stidham badly overthrew James White who was all alone in one rep.
  • N’Keal Harry had a concentration drop on a deep ball from Tom Brady which drew groans from the crowd. 
  • Brady targeted Braxton Berrios frequently while James White joined Brandon Bolden and Damien Harris in getting a lot of reps from the backfield.
  • Dan Skipper is getting a lot of reps at left tackle as Joe Thuney returns to his normal left guard position. 
  • Bill Belichick said before practice that the team would work on Situational football as their focus Monday night and they did, conducting several down and distance scenarios during the session.
  • Among the players speaking with the media after practice were Maurice Harris, Mike Pennel, and Lawrence Guy. 
  • After the session, players signed autographs for the fans and then everyone was treated to a fireworks display inside Gillette Stadium. 

Follow me on Twitter @SteveB7SFG or email me at [email protected]

Listen to our Patriots 4th and 2 podcasts on blog talk radio as Russ Goldman, Derek Havens and myself from PatsFans.com discuss the latest Patriots news and game analysis.

Patriots Training Camp Day 3 Observations, Old-Timers Day

Steve Balestrieri
July 27, 2019 at 6:09 pm ET

Apologies for the late post… sometimes life can throw us a curve, or strand you on the road with a broken-down car…

The Patriots were back on the field in full pads in near-perfect weather conditions on Saturday morning. Prior to the practice session, Nick Caserio spoke to the assembled media and announced that Sony Michel would return to the field today. Caserio was pressed several times for more information on the open GM position for the Houston Texans but he held firm and reiterated that his focus was on making this team better. 

“Look, I’m in a great position,” Caserio said. “I’ve got a great opportunity each day to come in here and serve this team and this organization, and I enjoy doing that, and that’s what I’m excited to do. I’m going to continue to do that to the best of my ability.”

For a complete look at the Caserio interview see our FB page.

Caserio did say that Michael Bennett was excused for a personal reason and that out of privacy concerns, they wouldn’t discuss it. Caserio also had a wry smile when discussing Tom Brady’s day off on Friday. 

“Every day, we do what we think is best,” Caserio said. “Tom’s fine. I wouldn’t put too much stock in that.”

Finally, he spoke with glowing terms about Ty Law and Rodney Harrison, and he said that Saturday’s practice was going to be run-heavy with a focus on the running game.

Michel and David Andrews did return to the field, although neither got too involved in the play. But it was a positive outlook nonetheless. 

Besides Troy Brown helping out with WRs, there were a host of former Patriot greats on hand today. Randy Moss had a moment with Tom Brady before the QB got up the stairs to the practice field. Later, Brady was uncorking some deep passes Moss’ way after the session was over. Rodney Harrison was on the field and on the hill with fans and media members. Rodney signed a ton of autographs for the fans and had a nice interaction with several. Rob Ninkovich, now with ESPN was there as well as Willie McGinest who shared some time with Bill Belichick after practice and with Brady as well. 

Rodney Harrison autographing footballs for fans (SBalestrieri photo)

And then there was practice.

Our practice observations included: 

  • N’Keal Harry caught a really nice touchdown pass from Brian Hoyer. He showed his athleticism by leaping over J.C. Jackson in the corner of the end zone.
  • Brady struggled in his return to action on Saturday, going 0-4 in 11-on-11 work and just 2-8 overall in the run-heavy session.
  • Danny Etling continued to practice as a wide receiver and filled in at QB in some running back drills for the depth guys. He stayed late after practice working on both WR and QB drills. 
  • Nick Caserio was on the field and tossing fade routes and quick slants in goalline situations on a side session with Ben Watson and Matt LaCosse
  • Brandon Bolden and Damien Harris were both getting a lot of reps in the running game. 
  • Braxton Berrios, Maurice Harris, and Gunner Olszewski continued to field punts and were joined by Pat Chung today (still wearing the red non-contact jersey).
  • James White took a pretty good pop on an inside run by Christian Sam. It was an audible hit that got everyone’s attention.
  • In other side sessions, Brady worked with Harry and Jakobi Meyers while Hoyer worked with James White and Damien Harris.
  • Maurice Harris continues to catch everything thrown his way. He’s off to a strong start thus far.
  • The big men had some one-on-one battles at the far end of the field. Derek Rivers beat Marcus Cannon, Mike Pennel bull-rushed Ted Karras in a good battle, James Ferentz beat both Adam Butler and Nick Thurman in good action.
  • Umfomba Kamalu appeared to beat Andrew Beck but afterward had to run a lap so he may have jumped offside.
  • Jarrett Stidham hit James Develin for an easy touchdown when someone in the secondary blew their coverage and left him all alone.
  • Stidham also hit Maurice Harris on a nice throw.
  • Stephon Gilmore and  Jackson had pass breakups 

Play of the Day:

Jackson had a beautiful pass breakup on a deep ball from Tom Brady to Phillip Dorsett. Dorsett had gotten behind him and had a step and a half lead. Brady arced a deep 40-yard pass perfectly in the bucket, but Jackson closed and tore the ball out as they tumbled to the ground. 

Follow me on Twitter @SteveB7SFG or email me at [email protected]

Listen to our Patriots 4th and 2 podcasts on blog talk radio as Russ Goldman, Derek Havens and myself from PatsFans.com discuss the latest Patriots news and game analysis.

VIDEO: Rodney Harrison’s Top Patriots Plays

Robert Alvarez
May 18, 2019 at 1:58 pm ET

On May 6th, safety Rodney Harrison was selected to be the 29th member of the New England Patriots Hall of Fame.

On Twitter, the team paid tribute to Harrison with a highlight reel of top plays from his Foxborough tenure.

Check out some of the best below.

Harrison will join offensive tackle Leon Gray in an induction ceremony outside The Hall at Patriot Place on July 29th.

Patriots Fourth And Two: What Can Jamie Collins Offer The Patriots This Time Around?

Russ Goldman
May 16, 2019 at 2:28 pm ET

In this episode of Patriots Fourth And Two, we debated the signing of Jamie Collins, and what his arrival could mean for the team. We also discussed the other recent signings for the team which include Ben Watson. We finished up the show by talking about Rodney Harrison, who will be inducted into the Patriots Hall Of Fame.

Rodney Harrison Is the People’s Choice for the Patriots Hall of Fame

Steve Balestrieri
May 7, 2019 at 6:30 am ET

The voters have spoken for the Patriots team Hall of Fame and Rodney Harrison has garnered the most votes, having bested both Richard Seymour and Mike Vrabel. He’ll be getting his red jacket at a ceremony later this summer.

Harrison, on a teleconference call with the media, said he was surprised by the vote. “I was kind of like frozen because I’m telling you, I had it in my mind that I wasn’t going to be the guy,” Harrison said. “You just kind of get used to that, whether it’s Pro Bowls or things like that. Once they told me, I just thanked God and gave Him all this praise. And I just started receiving all these text messages from (Patriots LB Tedy) Bruschi and a whole bunch of people, so it was just a really, really proud moment for me and my family.”

Rodney Harrison finished Super Bowl XXXVIII with a broken arm but refused to leave the field

Harrison was often overlooked at how good he was because of his reputation as a dirty player. He only garnered two Pro Bowl nods but between 2003 and 2008, he was one of the most valuable players on the Patriots defense. Bill Belichick has said that Harrison was the best practice player he ever coached.

“That’s why it meant so much to me, so much more to me because it’s not going by reputation. You don’t have to have a certain reputation — good, bad or indifferent. The fans knew that I loved football. I gave everything for the organization, for my teammates, and for the fans and my family.”

Harrison had seven interceptions in nine playoff games for the Patriots, including two in Super Bowl XXXIX against Philadelphia. He also came to the Patriots with a reputation for tough, physical play and in his first two seasons (both Super Bowl wins) he led the Patriots in tackles with 140 (a career high) and 138.

Harrison is the only defensive back in NFL history with 30 sacks (30.5) and 30 interceptions. He was a team captain for all six of his Patriots seasons. He will be inducted with Leon Gray at a ceremony to be determined later this summer.

All three nominees are very deserving but Harrison has been the most visible with his hosting of Sunday Night Football telecasts with Tony Dungy. That certainly didn’t hurt his candidacy. Both Harrison and Seymour belong in Canton.

Of those Patriots’ teams that won three Super Bowls in four years, Harrison becomes the seventh player to be inducted into the team’s HOF. He’ll join Troy Brown (2012), Tedy Bruschi (2013), Ty Law (2014), Willie McGinest (2015), Kevin Faulk (2016) and Matt Light (2018).

VIDEO: Finalists Announced For 2019 Patriots Hall of Fame

Robert Alvarez
April 17, 2019 at 9:55 pm ET

On Tuesday the three finalists were announced for the New England Patriots Hall of Fame class of 2019.

Safety Rodney Harrison, defensive lineman Richard Seymour and linebacker Mike Vrabel all made the final cut.

All three players were integral pieces to a Patriots defense that earned multiple Super Bowl championships in the early 2000s.

Vrabel has been a finalist each of the last four years, while Seymour has been a finalist in each of his three years of his Patriots Hall of Fame eligibility. Harrison is a first-time finalist. It is also the second straight year that three teammates have been selected as finalists. 

Fans can vote at Patriots.com/hof through May 3, and the team will announce the 2019 Patriots Hall of Fame selection the following week.

The 2019 inductee will join the senior committee’s 2019 selection Leon Gray in an induction ceremony on the NRG Plaza outside the Patriots Hall of Fame later this summer.

Check out the video profiles on each nominee below.

Best Of Social Media: The Patriots Celebrate Christmas

Robert Alvarez
December 26, 2018 at 4:59 pm ET

On Tuesday, current and former members of the New England Patriots took time to share Christmas messages and photographs over their social media accounts.

Check out some of the best below.

View this post on Instagram

‘Twas the night before Christmas. Happy Holidays!

A post shared by Jonathan Jones (@getitonjones31) on

View this post on Instagram

Merry Christmas fam

A post shared by David Andrews (@bear_6060) on

View this post on Instagram

Merry Christmas Everyone

A post shared by Jeremy Hill (@jeremyhill) on

View this post on Instagram

Merry Christmas from the squad!

A post shared by Duron Harmon (@dharm21) on


VIDEO: Tom Brady’s Sunday Night Football Interview With Rodney Harrison

Robert Alvarez
November 8, 2018 at 3:41 pm ET

Before the Patriots squared off with the Green Bay Packers this past weekend, quarterback Tom Brady sat down with former teammate Rodney Harrison for a one on one interview that discussed the quarterbacks he emulated as a kid, the traits Aaron Rodgers possesses, and why he doesn’t like the label of being called the best ever.

NBC Sports released the full 17 minute interview with Harrison that you can check out below.

Monday Daily Rundown 8/29: New England Patriots News and Notes

Ian Logue
August 29, 2016 at 5:00 am ET

Good morning, and here’s a look at this morning’s top stories.

Looking at Where the Patriots Rank After Three Weeks – Now that we’re three weeks through the exhibition season, it was interesting take a few minutes and looking at where some players sit in terms of overall statistics after three games.  Granted these numbers are a little useless given the fact the league doesn’t take into account playing time and quality of opponent (whether or not players are facing first or third string defenses, but nonetheless, there are a few Patriots who are in the top 10 in a few different categories.

Jimmy Garoppolo is second in the NFL in passing yards with 406, trailing Dallas’ Dak Prescott, who has 454.  Prescott has the edge in terms of touchdown passes having thrown 5 compared to Garoppolo’s one, which is probably the bigger area of concern thus far as he struggled Friday night as he continues gaining experience in the offense.  He only had three pass attempts down in the red area against the Panthers but did have two completions for 6-yards.

Meanwhile Tyler Gaffney checks in at #5 for rushing yards with 153, trailing DeMarco Murray’s (TEN) 153, Derrick Henry’s (TEN) 154, Malcolm Brown’s (LA) 155, and Christine Michael’s (SEA) 157.  LeGarrette Blount is close behind at #7 with 115 behind Dallas’ Darius Jackson (120).

The leading receivers are tight end A.J. Derby, who comes in at #7 overall with 10 catches for 138 yards, followed by Chris Hogan, who shot up and comes in at #11 after his big performance Friday night.  He now has 9 receptions for 115-yards through three games.  The overall leaders right now starting at the top are the Jets’ Robby Anderson (11 catches, 203 yards), Atlanta’s Aldrick Robinson (7 catches, 202 yards), Buffalo’s Walter Powell (12 catches, 189 yards), Tennessee’s Tajae Sharpe (9 catches 163 yards), Houston’s Will Fuller (8 catches for 144 yards) and Tampa Bay’s Mike Evans (8 catches, 143-yards).

Defensively, just one player for the Patriots made the list and that was Trey Flowers, who has 13 tackles, which has him tied with 10 other players for 6th most in the NFL.  He’s also currently 4th in sacks this preseason with 2.5 trailing Minnesota’s Justin Trattou (4.5), Denver’s Dekoda Watson and San Francisco’s Marcus Rush (both tied with 4), Miami’s Julius Warmsley, as well as Baltimore’s Matt Judon and Tampa Bay’s Jacquies Smith (all three tied with 3).

One other name that stood out was defensive back Cre’von LeBlanc, who was tied for the 4th most passes defensed with 3, which is a crowded group that has him joined by 15 other players.

These numbers don’t include the results from Sunday night’s battle between the Jaguars and Bengals, which as of the writing of this isn’t quite over yet.  But it gives you a glimpse at a few players who have had a productive preseason, and it’s going to be interesting to see how a couple of them end up when the team begins thinning out their roster.

Jones in the mix to return punts in 2016 – Cyrus Jones has had a good preseason returning punts, finishing with three returns for 85-yards, including a 60 yard return Friday night against the Panthers.  Overall this preseason he’s returned six for 109 yards and one fair catch, with the rookie having more or less exclusively handled that role.  D.J. Foster, Chris Harper, and V’Angelo Bentley are the only other players to have returned a punt, with each having one at this point in the preseason.

Bill Belichick was asked if he would consider giving Jones that responsibility to begin the season, and the Patriots head coach surprisingly gave Jones a pretty good endorsement.

“I think that’s a consideration,” said Belichick in a conference call on Saturday.  “Obviously, Danny [Amendola] and Julian [Edelman] have a lot of experience returning punts for us as well as kickoffs in the past. We’ll see how it goes, but we have good depth at that position and that’s always a good thing to have.”

It makes sense for Jones to start the year and take over those responsibilities, especially since Amendola and Edelman are both still trying to get fully healthy heading into the season.  Jones has also flashed in the secondary, including having made a pretty good play on an interception the previous week against Chicago.

For now Belichick said he has a lot of confidence in not just Jones, but in several of the guys who have gotten work in and he’ll wait and see how things play out heading into the regular season.

“We have confidence in all of those guys back there,” said Belichick.  “Last night we even had D.J. [Foster] who got a chance to handle the ball. We’ll see how it goes going forward, but I think we have good competition and good depth at that position.”

Belichick Pleased With Brissett – Jacoby Brissett’s performance Friday night was noteworthy, especially given his perfect 9-of-9 passing performance along with a touchdown.  Despite the fact Brissett saw most of his action late in the second half against lower tier players, Belichick was quick to dismiss that notion because in his mind, it was what he felt to be a pretty level playing field.

“I think particularly in this game, the competition was pretty level throughout the game in terms of when both teams substituted and who was out there, so it was a relatively level competitive playing field,” said Belichick Saturday.   “I think Jacoby continued to do some really good things. His passing stats last night we’re good which is always a good thing; 9-9, no turnovers, that’s a good place to start. There are a number of things he could have done better, like every player that played. He’s certainly learning and getting better at things every week, but there are new things that happen every week; different situations, different matchups against different defenses, so it’s a process.”

The biggest thing Belichick has been pleased with so far is the fact that Brissett’s been working hard and paying attention, which he believes is obviously one of the most important attributes a player can have.  So far for Brissett, it seems to be paying off.

“I think that’s the most important thing for any young player, to continue to improve, continue to make progress, to correct some of the things from the week before, or maybe from things that come up in practice,” said Belichick.  “They’re going to experience new things; they’re not all going to go right. They’re going to have to correct those and build on those while progressing in other areas that have previously been addressed and just continue to keep improving on a daily basis and then when they get a chance to play, show progress.”

“That’s the most important thing, really for all players, but especially for young players, that we see that improvement. That’s a good thing if players are working hard and paying attention to the instruction that they’re being given and they improve. Then we’re on the right track and hopefully we can continue to build on that.”

New England’s pass rush has been terrific during the preseason. (USA TODAY Images)

Pass Rush Off to a Good Start For the Patriots – The Patriots have been making some noise on defense during the preseason and they made Cam Newton pretty miserable during their win Friday night.

So far through three games they have six interceptions, two fumble recoveries and two defensive touchdowns and were all over Newton, picking him off twice while holding him to a dismal 13-of-29 passing and a paltry QB rating of 25.1.

They’ve looked good for much of the preseason, and that’s definitely a good sign considering how they finished last season.  As Jeff Howe of the Boston Herald pointed out on Sunday, the Patriots finished with 21 takeaways last season, which was their second-lowest total in 16 seasons under Belichick.

Logan Ryan was one of the players who picked off Newton, making a perfect read and a terrific leaping grab against receiver Kelvin Benjamin.  Ryan said they’ve been working hard in drills during practice, which obviously paid off against Carolina.

“We’re continuing to get the ball, which is something that we’ve harped on. Turnovers are contagious,” Ryan said Sunday via Patriots.com. “We’re going to keep sticking to the drills in practice.”

“We always try to be a confident group. We put a lot of work in… I just know we’re having a lot of fun, taking it one week at a time.”

No Rift Between Belichick and Brady – One of the more annoying sports takes over the past two weeks has been the notion of frustration in the lack of playing time for Tom Brady creating a rift between he and Belichick.

Former Patriots safety Rodney Harrison, who faced a 4-game suspension of his own during his career when he admitted in 2007 about his use of HGH while he was recovering from a significant injury, said that the two have too much respect to let anything come between them.


“First, it’s a very respectful relationship,” Harrison told the Boston Herald. “And knowing Tom, he wants to be out there. He’s a very competitive guy. He feels like the more reps you get, the better prepared you are, and even though he’s not playing those first four games, and even though he’s accomplished so much in his career, he still wants those reps to feel comfortable.”

“But it still comes down to Belichick. He’s the head coach and he has to make some tough decisions, and that’s giving Jimmy Garoppolo as many reps as possible. Tom’s had 15, 16, 17 years of reps. It’s time to give the young kid reps, build his confidence, and see what the team’s capable of doing with him.”

Former teammate Heath Evans, who is now with the NFL Network, also dismissed the notion, telling the Herald that the ‘stupid’ speculation is just nonsense.

“No one knows anything,” Evans said.  “People are just speculating stupid stuff that never takes place in that building. Period. The end. That’s where I stand on it.”

But given the fact there will be four weeks where Jimmy Garoppolo’s development will likely fuel even more discussion, you can bet some of the topics that will arise between now and October should continue to be just as nauseating until Brady returns.

Kearse Heads off to Injured Reserve – Defensive lineman Frank Kearse never got much of a chance to get going in training camp and after battling an undisclosed injury, Kearse landed on injured reserve on Saturday.

The veteran was originally signed by New England as a free agent back on March 11th and is a former 7th round selection by the Dolphins.