Monday, November 27, 2006

General thoughts on The Pats...

We're heading into December, the final month of the NFL regular season. Where are The Patriots at?

Well at 8-3 The Pats have a good record and the division lead. I'm always happy when they hit that 8 win mark. There's no way they can have a losing season now. Of course, expectations for the team are a lot higher than a .500 season these days, but it still gives me a sense of relief to get those 8 wins. Call it a throwback to the days when the Pats did not always expect to contend for the Superbowl on a yearly basis.

The Patriots are currently the 4th seed in the AFC, though that could change and they could potentially move up a spot, maybe two, by the time the end of December rolls around. The Jets are still hanging around and are two games back in the division, but The Pats have a pretty favorable schedule heading into December. It would take an epic collapse for them to lose the division lead at this point.

Sadly The Patriots lost linebacker Junior Seau for the remainder of the year when he suffered a broken arm in Sunday's game vs Chicago. It is a real shame that he had to end his season, and most likely his career in this way, going out on an injury. He was having a stellar season after coming out of a brief retirement to play with The Pats. Maybe the team can give him a Superbowl as a final gift before he hangs em up for good.

The biggest concern for me right now with the team has been the continued problem with turnovers. Whether it's tipped passes that wind up as interceptions or just plain fumbling the ball, the continued turnovers that are occurring, game in and game out, are going to end up being the team's undoing, just as it was last year in the playoffs. Unless they can get the problem fixed, that is. The Pats have a month of December Football to figure out how to fix the turnover problem. This is the time when teams really start to get into full playoff football mode, so hopefully the Pats can put a stop to the giveaway problem as they ramp up for the post-season.

Besides the turnovers, the next biggest concern is the continued rash of injuries to the team's defense. There's not much to say there. Every season, the Patriots sign about 35 cornerbacks and safetys to their roster to start the season and by December, it seems like 33 of them are always hurt. It's the same old story every year, and if anybody can deal with it, through experience if nothing else, it's The Patriots.

Here's a quick look at the top four seeds and their remaining schedule:

Indy - I bleeping hate Indy. It seems like I like them less and less every year. Believe it or not, there was once a time when I actually liked Indianapolis. They used to be one of my backup teams. Those days are long gone. Indy faces Tennessee, Jacksonville, Cincy, Houston and Miami. On the face of things, none of these teams would seem like they would present a huge challenge to The Colts at this point, but Tennessee has been knocking off good teams left and right and Jacksonville always gives Indy a game.

Baltimore - These guys are scary this year, scarier than Indy if you ask me. They've got Cincy, K.C., Cleveland, Pittsburgh and Buffalo. There are some tough games in there, but with the way The Ravens are bowling over teams, none of them are jumping out as a potential loss for The Ravens. K.C. is probably the toughest game they have left.

San Diego - These guys are one of my main Patriots backup teams, except when they are in the way of The Pats getting a higher seed in the playoffs that is. They've got Buffalo, Denver, K.C., Seattle and Arizona. Not necessarily an easy schedule for these guys. Denver and K.C. are going to give them everything they have. Seattle could be a challenge as well.

The Pats - Detroit, Miami, Houston, Jax and Tennessee. There are a few potentially challenging games in there. Miami, Jacksonville and Tenn could be tough games. As long as The Pats continue playing solid all around football and clean up the turnovers, these are all winnable games.

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Sunday, November 26, 2006

Pats win caps off a nice long weekend

Well my long Thanksgiving weekend is winding down. After I write this I'll read a few pages of my book (currently reading Jarhead by Anthony Swafford), then it will be time for sleep. When the alarm goes off in the morning it'll be back to the 9 to 5 routine.

It was a great four days off. Thanksgiving was a lot of fun, though I ate way, way too much. I could hardly move when it was time to leave my Mom's house. It was either that piece of pumpkin pie or that last Harpoon IPA that send me over the edge.

In general, I ate way too much this entire weekend. I did have a salad at one point, but it was a taco salad. Even though technically a taco salad is 'a salad', I don't know how non-fattening that kind of salad really is. In any case, I think it can be said that when the least fattening meal you've eaten over a four day period is a taco salad, you've gone a bit overboard.

Tomorrow I'll get back into the exercise routine of walking and going to the gym on my lunch-break. And it will be back to the same old boring sandwich every day for lunch. Oh well. Only a few more weeks till Christmas vacation...

One of the highlights of the weekend was The Patriots win over The Chicago Bears today. The Bears were a very intimidating team coming into Foxboro. They had a 9-1 record and even Patriots Football Weekly had given the Pats only one out of five possible advantages in the running, passing and special teams categories going into the game.

I watched the first half of the game while I worked on covering up the lolly columns in my basement with pole wrap. I finished up the work just in time to come upstairs and catch the second half in the comfort of my living room.

It was a very exciting game, thought there were quite a few moments of stress. The end of the game was particularly stressful. With The Pats holding onto a narrow lead, I paced the living room, wrapped up in The Lucky Patriots Fleece Blanket, occasionally yelling at the TV.

My baby daughter was rambling around having fun in her walker and with my every shout or curse, she would turn and look at me quizzically, like she was not sure how to react to this noise that I was making. She is not used to seeing me yelling and shouting, so she always looks at me funny at first when something happens during a game and I make noise. Then she smiles when she sees everything is ok and Daddy is just being noisy.

The Pats were successfully trying to run out the clock to end the game when running back Corey Dillon coughed up the ball, giving Chicago a last ditch chance for a comeback. As the yelling ensued, my daughter rambled over in her walker to see what all the shouting was about and game me a smile, like, 'Don't worry Dad. It's going to be ok.'

Chicago quarterback Rex Grossman then proceeded to throw the ball up for grabs and it was intercepted by the Patriots cornerback, Asante Samuel. Game over. Baby smiles are extra lucky.

Some side notes:
Congratulations to Kevin Faulk for taking over as the Patriots all-time record holder for receptions by a running back.

Nice job to Stephen Gostkowski for his 52-yard field goal today. The first try at it was a miss, but as luck would have it, Chicago called time out before the kick, giving him a second chance, which he made.

Welcome back to punter Ken Walter. He did not do too badly I thought, considering he had basically been retired prior to re-joining The Pats today.

Pats linebacker Junior Seau left the game with an arm injury. Hopefully he will be able to return to the team at some point. He had been having a great year after un-retiring to join The Pats.

Today was Tom Brady's 100th game. With today's win Tom Brady now has a 76-24 career record. Nice.


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Sunday, November 19, 2006

Overall, a good day for Football...

It was a very good day for football today, with the exception being Philly's Donovan McNabb suffering a season-ending injury with a torn ACL. That sucks. I hate to see that kind of thing happen to any player.

The Pats laid the whomp down on Green Bay today, putting an end to their thankfully short, two game losing streak and winning for the first time at Lambeau Field, 35 to zipola. No more losing streaks for the rest of the year now Patriots. Thank you.

Amazingly, this was only The Patriots second time playing at Lambeau Field and only the third time they have played in the State of Wisconsin. For some reason, these two teams don't seem to cross each other's paths that often.

Even though The Packers are not an upper echelon NFL team right now, they are always tough to beat at home and it was good to see the Pats get this win. It's amazing what it does for my mood. All is right with the world again and I can now head into the short Thanksgiving Holiday week calm and content.

I was sorry to see Far-vre get hurt in the game. Hopefully it is nothing that will keep him from playing next week. I don't like to see players get hurt, on either side of the ball..

In other good Football News, The Indianapolis Colts can now be referred to as 'formerly undefeated'. How 'bout them Cowboys huh? Woo hoo! I mean, Yee-Ha! Dallas beat Indy, 21-14, today. Thanks Dallas. Glad we got that out of the way. Now the rest of us can get on with enjoying the regular season knowing that The Colts won't go undefeated. That is a load off my mind.

As The Pats were winning in Green Bay, The Jets were losing at home, giving The Patriots a little breathing room in the AFC East. I wonder what the magic number for The Pats to clinch The Division is at this point... It's probably something like 3 or something like that. I'd take the time to figure out the Pats magic number and let you know what it is if it were not for one thing: figuring out the magic number would require thinking, and that is something I am not in the mood to do at the moment. Right now I am in the mood for zoning, as in out, soon to be followed thereafter by sleeping.


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Friday, November 17, 2006

Please note:

I would just like to note the following:

It's the middle of November and the temps here in the Northeast U.S. are in the 60s. Fabulous. I hope it stays like this all winter. I hope it is 55 degrees in the middle of January. Global warming rules.

You may have noticed that I've been throwing around the word 'awesome' a lot lately and I feel the need to point out that 'awesome' is not a word that can be applied to just anything around here. 'Awesome' is definitely not an adjective to be taken lightly. To receive the 'awesome' moniker on this site, something must be truly AWESOME. So if I tell you that I think something is awesome, that means that I think it's really, really good and super cool too.

Unless I am being sarcastic.

Like when I describe getting cut off in traffic by a person talking on their cell phone while driving their Ford Expedition as awesome, that's not really awesome. That's the opposite of awesome. Or if I describe the feeling of finding out that Jessica Biel has been dating Derek Jeter as awesome, that is total sarcasm right there. That is definitely the opposite of awesome. Oh my sweet Jessica, what were you thinking?

Please don't tell me that Jeter has also dated Jessica Alba. There are some things I'd rather not know. Maybe he has, maybe he hasn't. I honestly don't know, but if he has, then don't ruin it for me. Let Jessica Alba remain pure in my mind. Thank you.

While I have been using the word 'awesome' quite a bit recently, on the flip side, I have been trying to curtail my use of the word, 'fuck'. Overuse of this word limits it's effectiveness. Plus it's naughty.

A couple people have e-mailed me, ok one person, has e-mailed me, asking what I thought of the The Sox shelling out 50 million just to talk to some Hekimatzuizilla guy. (Apparently he's a pitcher?) My answer: The Pats are playing Green Bay this weekend.

Seriously, talk to me when pitchers and catchers report. I'll see who shows up at The Fort and tell you what I think then. Right now it's football season.

This may be one of the most pointless posts I have ever written. And that's saying something.

One last thing. The End Zone is on Fridays now, so head over to Faster Than the World and check it out if you get a chance!

Ok as you were. Happy Friday.

Thursday, November 16, 2006

Oh yeah, the scout team!

Vinny Testaverde's recent arrival in Foxboro has had a few people scratching their heads. My initial thought was that he would provide a good veteran presence for Brady to work with, but the question was asked if Vinny would be playing on the scout team and a little light-bulb went off.

Yes. The scout team!

One of the less heralded roles that former Pats backup Chandler Bing, I mean, Damon Huard, played on the team was his ability to run the Pats' scout team. He was known to be able to mimic opposing quarterbacks right down to the letter, including quarterbacks such as Peyton Manning, and that provided a great deal of help to the defense's game preparation week to week.

Yes. The scout team! Helping Tom Brady! Fetching coffee for the coaches! Whatever! As long as the team is getting better and gets back on the winning track, it's all good. I have not had to live through a Patriots losing streak in 4 years and 2 games is long enough I think. Time to get back to winning streaks.

This upcoming game against Green Bay will be interesting. The Pats used to play Green Bay rather frequently in the late 90s, especially after they met in the Superbowl, but that has tapered off over the last few years.

Seeing The Patriots playing at Lambeau is always kind of cool. There's something about that stadium that is unique from all the others in the league. It has a certain aura about it.

I'm sure we will hear all kinds of Far-vre / Brady comparisons leading up to the game. The old war horse vs. the latest and greatest QB and all that. Whatever. As long as The Pats come out of the game with a win and Chicago hands The Jets a loss this weekend, I'm good.

Tuesday, November 14, 2006

Some thoughts from Captain Crabby Crankypuss...

I've been in a crabby, cranky mood the last few days. I don't really know why, I just have. It's not just because The Pats lost again on Sunday, though that certainly did not help matters. Maybe it's that time of the month for me. I don't know. November is kind of a rough month for me. Some events occurred during the month of November a long time ago that unfortunately still haunt me to this day. I hate it because this fucking ball and chain just does not ever go away. I've tried Jack and I've tried Jesus, but I still carry shit around that won't go away. Whatever. Enough about my problems.

The Pats are tearing up the grass field down at Gillette and will replace it with an artificial surface. I have mixed feelings about it. I think the game should be played on grass, but I guess if The Pats are going to let people play soccer on it and have concerts and other stuff going on on top of the field, then it's probably the best thing to do.

It has been painfully obvious that the grass surface does not hold up to all the abuse that soccer, concerts and football put on it. The field looked horrible at the start of the season and it only became worse as the games continued. At one point it looked more like The Pats were playing on a beach out there than on grass.

Personally I don't think that soccer should be played on that field, but I can understand why the Krafts allow it. A privately financed stadium needs to generate revenue and that's the bottom line.

An artificial surface will be able to stand up to far more abuse than a grass surface can. An improved surface should also reduce the risk of injury as well. Anybody that has ever played sports on a bad surface knows that it can be hard on the ankles and knees. It's not fun when you're running down the field and roll your ankle because you hit a bad spot and stepped into a giant divot on the field.

I wish the field at The Razor could have remained a natural surface, but in the long run, it's probably the right thing to do.

The Pats signed Vinny Interceptaverde as their emergency quarterback. I guess I should not pick on him with that name anymore now that he's a Patriot, especially considering the number of picks that Brady has thrown in the last few games.

I'm not really sure what the rationale for signing Testaverde is, but I'm guessing that one reason might be that it provides a benefit to Tom Brady to have a veteran QB presence around to talk with about different situations and to bounce different ideas off of. Up until now, Brady has been the veteran / mentor to Matt Cassel and it's been kind of a one way street. Cassel gets valuable knowledge from Brady, but how much is Cassel really helping out Tom?

Now Brady will have a person there for him to turn to who has been around the league and has faced all kinds of different situations while playing quarterback. Brady has not been himself this season. Hopefully having a guy like Testaverde around will be a help to Tom as he continues to work on getting better every week.


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Monday, November 13, 2006

What I said

Richard Seymour's comments on the Pats' recent loss to The Jets this past Sunday pretty much echo the same thoughts that I had immediately after the loss...

"Just from looking at the game film, we don't question anybody whether they're hustling or putting their best foot forward. We just have to do a better job and play smarter than we're playing now."
-Richard Seymour

It's not that the Pats are not working or playing hard, it's the mental mistakes during the game that are killing them. The Pats have been making it too easy for the opposition and have been beating themselves. Clean up the mistakes during the games and the team will be right back on track.

The world did not end after The Pats lost yesterday...

When The Patriots lose a game, the following day always sucks. Yes, I am well aware that I take these games way to seriously. Here are a few things that help me feel better after The Patriots loss to The Jets yesterday:

- The Pats are 6-3. Obviously you want to win all of these games but that is not realistic. 6-3 is a decent record at this point in the season, so I need to try to maintain some perspective and not act like they are 3-6.

I tend to be very up and down when it comes to following my teams. When things are going well, I think that we are going to win The Superbowl. If the slightest thing goes wrong, I want to immediately hit the panic button. I get all, 'Oh shit, we're going down! The season is over!' when in reality that is not the case..

- We still hold the lead in the Division. Yes, the race has tightened, but The Pats are still in the drivers seat as far as the AFC East goes.

- The Pats have lost the last two games mainly due to turnovers. That is a problem that they should be able to fix.

- I have to admit I have become somewhat spoiled by The Patriots and their performance over the last few seasons and my expectations week to week may be unreasonably high. Expecting them to go 6-0 in the AFC East is a prime example of that. If The Pats lose a game, even a divisional game, it is not the end of the season... The Playoffs don't start tomorrow.

- In 2001, the Pats were 5-5 at one point. No-one expected anything from them that year and they went on to win the Superbowl. I am not saying that I expect history to repeat itself, or that this year's Patriots team is the same as the 2001-02 team, I am simply using that example as a way to remind myself that the way things look at mid-season is always very different than the way things end up as teams head into the playoffs. A lot can (and will) change between the middle of November and the middle of December.


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Sunday, November 12, 2006

Turnovers kill Pats again...

That Patriots / Jets game today was one of the most frustrating Pats games I've watched in a very long time, even worse than last weeks loss to the Colts.

The Patriots offense was running in the mud all day, both literally and figuratively. I don't understand why, but it feels like the Pats are almost refusing to go with what seems to be their strength on offense, the running game. Dillon looked great running the ball today, but hardly touched the ball. I think he got 10 carries all day.

The Pats looked great throwing the ball against Minnesota a few weeks ago but overall, the Pats' passing game has felt totally out of sync all season. There have been times when it seems like they are starting to click, but then it falls apart.. This current crop of receivers is not what I would term as 'sure handed'. Yes, they have made some nice catches, Reche Caldwell's catch and run for a TD today was very nice to see, and with the 2 point conversion tacked on, that score pulled the Pats within 3 at the end of the game, but plays like those seem to be few and far between.

It feels like more often than not, passes are getting dropped or tipped. I feel like The Pats are continually taking shots down field and 'going for it' with long passing attempts as well, instead of sticking with what works, consuming the clock and moving the chains with the running game and short to intermediate passes. I wish The Pats would get back to running the ball more and get Dillon more involved. Stop trying to force the passing game. Go with what works.

Defensively, the Pats were missing some key players today. Rodney Harrison was out as well as Ty Warren. Richard Seymour was in the game but spent a lot of time on the sidelines. The Pats seemed to be unable to stop the Jets defensively, who simply moved the chains with the running game and short to intermediate passes, like I was screaming for The Patriots to do.

With the loss, The Pats fall to 6-3 and The Jets climb to 5-4 and only one game back for the Division lead in the AFC East. The result of this game will make things interesting over the next few weeks. The Pats could have effectively wrapped up the division with a win. Instead they are looking at a dog-fight the rest of the way if The Jets go on a run.

Maybe this loss will serve as a wake up call to The Pats. It's not like I think they are putting out less than 100% or playing lethargically, like they are assuming they are going to win these games, they just need to clean up the mistakes. Eliminate the damn turnovers and they are in a different position right now. It's that simple.

The last 2 games were both lost due to turnovers. Clearly Brady is still not on the same page with his receivers. They have made progress since the beginning of the year, but now we are in the second half of the season and this is where teams either elevate their game, of get left behind.

I hope tomorrow I won't hear anyone say, 'This is not how The 3 Time Superbowl Champions play.' Whenever I hear someone say that kind of thing it makes me nuts.. The Pats won the Superbowl two years ago. This is a different team now, a very different team. People need to stop expecting these guys to play every week like the 2004-05 Superbowl Champions.

Thankfully there are still a lot of games left and I think the Pats can pull it together. We are still in good shape at 6-3, but we're looking at another week of living with a loss. That sucks. The Pats ended the last of their many long running streaks today. Until today, they had not lost back to back games since 2002. Now that streak is over. I'm pretty sure that was the last one.

It's time to start thinking of the team as what they are, a 6-3 team who is in the playoff hunt, but not guaranteed anything. Hopefully they'll get back on track next Sunday against Green Bay.


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Friday, November 10, 2006

Very Superstitious..

This morning as I was getting ready for work, I went into the closet and was trying to decide what to wear for a shirt today. I started to reach for a green flannel shirt but before I could take the hanger off of the rack, I quickly stopped and paused as a voice inside my head said, 'WAIT!'

Voice: 'The Pats are playing The Jets this weekend. You can't wear green. Green is the enemy color. You don't want to give any help to the Jets by wearing something green do you? Better wear something blue. Dark blue. Patriots blue'

I put the green shirt back on the rack and grabbed a blue shirt instead. And I put on some Patriots socks for good measure.

Yes, I have issues.


Yesterday I got an e-mail from ticket master telling me about some upcoming concerts and shows. One of the concerts listed was Bob Seger and The Silver Bullet Band and it was going to be on a Saturday night. 'Hey that might be a fun night out,' I thought, so I called my Wife to see if she would be interested in going. She was more than happy at the idea of getting a night out, so I clicked on the link to see about getting a ticket.

Guess how much? For Bob Seger. You'll never guess.

Seventy-Five Dollars!! For Bob Seger! What??

I was thinking the tix would be 30 - 40 bucks, max. Am I crazy to think $75 is way to much for Bob Seger tickets? Would you pay $75.00 to see Bob Seger? Maybe I am just cheap (I am.) That price seems to be a little recockulous to me. Plus add in all the fees and other nonsense that get tacked on any you're looking at probably $90.00 a ticket. For Bob Seger. 

I like his old songs but I am not what you would call a die-hard Seger fan. I was just looking for a fun night out with my Wife. Needless to say, the Wife and I will not be seeing the Bob Seger show. Maybe if we're lucky Clutch Grabwell will be playing somewhere that night instead.


Things were fairly sedate at the Dunkins this morning when I went in to get my Friday sammich and coffee. There was no parking lot craziness or other Dunks related issues to report today.


One last thing, The Bruins continue to be 'The Hub of Frustration', losing again, last night to Toronto. The B's are not fun to watch right now. Not fun at all. The Bruins suck right now ok? There I said it.

Sooner or later they're going to turn things around. Ever the optimist...

Tuesday, November 07, 2006

Harrison has broken shoulder...

Mike Reiss of the Boston Globe is reporting that Pats safety Rodney Harrison has a broken shoulder blade. The timetable for his return is unknown.

That is a shame after the amount of effort he put in to get back on the field this season.

The report says the the injury will not require surgery. Hopefully Harrison will only be out for a few weeks.

In the meantime, ug.

Troy Brown is The BALLS...

Have I mentioned that Troy Brown is 'THE BALLS'?

Well he is.

Somewhat lost in the hoopla and frustration surrounding last Sunday night's Patriots / Colts game was Troy Brown's record breaking 535th pass reception.

( photo)

Brown passed Stanley 'The Steamer' Morgan as The Patriots all-time leading receiver and etched his name at the top of The Pats' receiving record with catch number 535. Not too bad for a guy who almost did not make the team back in 1993.

Morgan's previous record of 534 catches had stood for over 20 years. Who knows how long Troy's record will last once he's finished with the game? I don't know, but I won't be surprised to see a giant Troy Brown banner hanging at Gillette some day, commemorating one of the greatest players in Patriots history.

Troy Brown does it all for The Patriots.

Troy Brown = THE BALLS.

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Monday, November 06, 2006

Recockulous turnovers cost Pats...

Monday AM. I'm still stinging from last night's Pats loss to the increasingly hated Colts. Yea, I know it's just a game. Easy for you to say.

My Wife came downstairs as I was getting ready for work this morning and asked, 'so, how did it go.'

'They lost.' I replied flatly.

'I had a feeling. It did not sound too good,' she said.

Yes, I can get quite vocal during games, especially when my team is continually wasting scoring chances by turning over the ball. And that is what gets under my skin more than anything, not so much that The Pats got beat, because I don't expect them to go 16-0 during the regular season, it's the way that they lost.

That was a completely winnable game for The Patriots last night, but the story of the game is the 5 Patriot turnovers. The excuse everyone will be using today is that some of those INTs were tipped balls, but that does not matter. It's on Brady just as much as it is on the receiver. Brady needs to put the ball in a spot where the receiver can cleanly make the catch, and not have to try to jump, stretch and contort himself to make some kind of miracle grab. That's how balls get tipped up in the air like a volleyball, just waiting for a defender to grab it.

Even with all the mistakes, penalties, dropped and tipped balls that went right into the hands of The Colts, The Pats were there at the end of the game and they had a chance to tie the score in the final two minutes, but in the end they could not overcome their own mistakes as the game ended with a final, deflating turnover on a tipped ball interception. Don't call it a comeback.

The bottom line is, I can bitch about last night all I want, but that is not going to change the final score. Today is going to be my usual, 'bitchy after a Patriots loss so don't bug me' day, then tomorrow it's time to suck it up and get back to business.

Like I said last night after the game, there's still half a season in front of us and a lot of things can and will happen during the next eight games. The Pats can practically seal up the AFC East with a win over The Jets this upcoming Sunday, so I'll be looking ahead to that.

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Sunday, November 05, 2006

Pats / Colts: 2nd Half thoughts as we go...

Some of these penalties are absolutely ridiculous. Hands to the face on Pats linebacker Mike Vrable? Hmm on the replay Vrablel's hands were on the guy's shoulders. I did not know shoulders=face. That ref #14, I don't know his name, I think he needs his prescription checked. I think he was the same guy who called 'taunting' on Troy Brown. Idiot ref...

Adam Vinatieri misses his first field goal attempt of the year. Ha-HA!!

Another turnover by The Patriots. This time Dillon coughed up the ball. I can't believe the Pats just keep giving the ball to Indy's offense like this. This game will be lost on these turnovers. Sickening... The Patriots Defense really needs turn up the heat and get a turnover themselves... A sack of Manning and then an incomplete pass results in a punt. At least The Colts did not get points this time. The score remains 17-14, Colts...

Time to stop typing for a while and concentrate on the game...

End of the 3rd. Colts went up by 10. Pats got 3 back to pull to within 7. They could have gotten more but a sure fire TD pass was tipped away by The Colts and then the rookie, I'm not going to bother trying to spell it right, Pats kicker shanked the field goal attempt wide right...

4th Q. 24-17, Colts. Time to dig in Patriots. You're only down by 7 here. Get it back. Penalties and turnovers are killing The Patriots. We need to play clean for the remainder of this thing to have a chance...

INTERCEPTION PATRIOTS!! With the Colts driving for a potential back-breaking score. The Pats pick Manning off. Now we need to get this thing tied up. NOW.

Dammit another tipped ball results in yet another turnover for The Patriots. That makes 4 turnovers in this game. Turnovers. Penalties. The clean game I was hoping for is not happening. 10 and change left in the game and the Colts are driving, as they have been all night. I hope the Pats can hold them to a field goal here... Damn this has been a frustrating game for Patriots Fans.

The Pats stopped The Colts on 3rd down and The Colts boot a field goal. 27-17, Colts. Not out of reach, yet, but The Patriots need to score a TD here and pull this thing to within 3. I'm trying to contain the stress in this game but it has not been easy. I've been clutching The Lucky Patriots Fleece Blanket.

I take these games to seriously. Dammit.

The Pats got a field goal to cut it back to 7 points. 6 and change left in the game. Not much time left. It's basically on the defense at this point to get the ball back into the hands of the offense as quickly as possible. No more posts till it's over. I could be in a bad mood tomorrow...

Well the game is over and The Patriots have fallen to The Colts, 27-20. Fuck. There's not much to say in this one except that there were 5 Patriots turnovers in this game and that cost them the game. Granted, several of Brady's interceptions came on tipped balls, including the final one, which came with The Pats trying to drive for a tying score, but that does not matter. A turnover is a turnover and that is what cost The Patriots the game. The numerous penalties against The Patriots did not help. Many of them came on 3rd down where they had The Colts stopped, but instead allowed their drives to continue.

There's not much else to say. Did I mention, fuck. Oh and I will be in a shitty mood tomorrow. This loss effectively puts The Pats in 3rd place or somewhere thereabouts in the AFC, depending on tie breakers and all that. The good thing is that there are 8 games left in the season (This is where I try to make myself feel better, in case you can't tell.) and there is plenty of opportunity there for The Pats to make a run at one of the top two playoff seeds. But in the meantime, dammit.

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Pats / Colts: 1st Half...

Some quick Pats / Colts thoughts at half-time...

The first half was not what I would call stressful. Frustrating is probably a better term to use. The Pats inability to stop the Colts passing game was very tough to see. I honestly thought that The Patriots would be able to do a better job against the Colts receivers, but The Colts are marching down the field with every possession.

The Pats looked good offensively. The running game has done a great job and there have been several big catches by The Pats receivers to move the chains.

Obviously, turnovers are the big thing The Patriots have to stop. The Colts have two interceptions and one of them led to a quick seven for Indy. The second one was because of a tipped ball, but still, it prevented the Patriots from scoring or possibly taking the lead.

Some of the penalties in the game so far have been ridiculous, but none was worse than the 'taunting' penalty called on Troy Brown. That was a total B.S. call if ever there was one.

Rodney Harrison has been out for most of the 1st Half after sustaining an arm injury. I hope he can come back in the 2nd half. The Patriots secondary seemed to be doing a better job with him in there, but if he can't get back in the game, the rest of the Patriots defense is going to have to step up...

Now The Pats are kicking off to the Colts. Let's hope The Pats can make things a little more difficult for The Colts... Have I mentioned that my extreme dislike for Peyton Manning continues to grow almost every season. I friggin can not stand that guy. I hope the Pats can get some turnovers off of him in this 2nd half...

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Friday, November 03, 2006

Pats / Colts / B's and Maple Syrup...

Hype it up baby. This Sunday, the greatest football game of the century will take place in Foxboro MA with The Pats facing The Undefeated and assuredly, this time, unstoppable Indianapolis Colts. At least, that's how the sports writers are talking about the game.

Haven't we been here before? The Colts come into Foxboro toting their ridiculous offensive numbers and best in the AFC record. HOW CAN THE PATRIOTS POSSIBLY STOP THEM?? Of course, this time around, people have come to the realization that the Pats HAVE stopped them, almost every single time, in this same type of situation, so the guys at ESPN are hedging their bets a little with this game. They've become a little gun-shy about picking against the Pats, even if deep down in their hearts, they really, really want to. That's you I'm looking at Tom Jackson.

Personally I would prefer to see the Patriots get a complete and total lack of respect heading into this game. I wish everybody at ESPN and the national sports media would unanimously pick the Colts to win and talk about how nobody can cover The Colts receivers and how The Pats don't have a chance because they no longer have Deion Branch and Adam Vinatieri is now kicking for The Colts.

That kind of thing just gets Rodney Harrison and Tedy Bruschi and the rest of The Pats D that much more fired up. In my mind, a seething mad Harrison is a good thing. Unfortunately, the 'Experts' have learned their lesson about picking against The Pats over the last few years, so the disrespect factor is not as high as I would like to see.

I expect The Pats / Colts game on Sunday will be a good game and there are playoff implications riding on the outcome, but in the long run it's still just one game half-way through the season. Regardless of who wins the game, there's still a lot of football left to be played in front of both teams and anything can happen in the 2nd half of the season.

Ok. Now that I've gotten the rational part of the post out of the way, I honestly think The Pats are going to kick The Colts ASS on Sunday. I think this will be the one of those famous 'blueprint' games where Belichick shows the rest of the league, 'This is how you beat the Colts. Here you go. Have at it and have fun with it.'

A few random thoughts:
- I can't believe the Bruins lost that game to the Buffalo Sabers last night. I turned the TV off and The B's had a 3 goal lead in the third period. I came into work today and saw the score was 5-4 Buffalo and could not believe my eyes. Unbelievable. The fucking 'Hub of Hockey'. The Hub of Frustration is more like it.

- My Wife did not feel like arguing with my kids about dinner last night so she made them waffles and gave them some apple slices to go with it. My kids were dipping the apples in the maple syrup. To quote my own children when my Wife puts a vegetable on their plate, 'Yuck.'

I thought it was bad enough that they like to dip apples in ketchup, but apples and maple syrup?? Ug.

Then they were asking me, 'Want some Dad?'

'Ah, that's very nice sharing but no thank you.'

My Wife tells me to just be happy they are eating something healthy. True. I have always said that she is the smart one.

- The fact that not a single member of the Red Sox starting infield from this past season was awarded a Gold Glove is ridiculous. It is beyond ridiculous. It is recockulous. The Sox had one of the best fielding teams in the history of baseball last season and no Gold Glove love for a single player? I guess so. No Gold Gloves for YOU Red Sox infielders!

Add in the fact that a Gold Glove was awarded to Derek Jeter and that makes things even more recockulous.

Yes, that's right. When you get beyond ridiculous things become 'recockulous'. And that is what this whole Gold Glove fiasco is. Recockulous. Feel free to use that word by the way.

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Tuesday, October 31, 2006

Happy Halloween and all that...

Hey what's up interweb? I am super sleepy this morning. I was up half the night watching The 3 Time Superbowl Champion New England Patriots lay a beat down on The 0 Time Superbowl Champion Minnesota Vikings.

I like that The Pats were in a nationally televised game, but damn, those games just go way too late. I wish they could start a little earlier. But that's not going to happen. So I may as well suck it up.

Happy Halloween to all you ghouls out there. My Daughter loves Halloween and came into our bedroom this morning saying 'Trick or Treat!' I think she's a little excited. She will be a Princess for Halloween and my Son will be Superman. I am going as Tom Brady, the football equivalent of Superman.

I have been informed however, that even though I will be dressing up, I am not eligible to receive any candy this evening because I don't have a trick or treat bag. Oh well.

Fuck I need a coffee.

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Monday, October 30, 2006

Nice win for The Pats vs The Vikings...

Going up against the #1 rushing defense in the league, The Pats countered and successfully went to the air in this game vs. The Vikes. Tom Brady has been spectacular, hooking up with multiple receivers and moving the ball down the field almost at will with the passing game. The Patriots' screen passes have been devastatingly good against The Vikes.

The Pats defense has been simply unrelenting in this game as well. They have been all over The Vikes' quarterbacks, applying non-stop pressure as well as stuffing the run.

9:14 left in the game and the score is 31-7, Pats. The Troy Brown / Pats reception record watch is down to one. One more catch and he has the Pats receiving record all to himself.

At this point, I'm looking for Brady to come out of the game. No need to keep him in there and risk injury at this point. The Vikes need 3 TDs and a field goal just to tie. With the way The Pats D is playing, I'd say that's highly unlikely with 8:30 left in the game... Highly unlikely.

I'd like to see Troy Brown get the receiving record before the game ends but if he doesn't, he'll get it next week in front of the home fans.

Under 5 min left in this one. The Pats made a statement in this game as we get ready for The Colts to come into The Razor next week. Cut that Meat.

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Burn Brady Burn...

I'm watching the Pats / Vikes game and I'm a little hinky about posting this, for fear of jinx, but I have to say, Tom Brady and the Pats passing offense is absolutely EN-FUEGO to start this game. Brady has made one mistake so far that wound up as an interception for the Vikes. Other than that, Brady has been spectacular.

On Defense, The Pats have been on the attack, coming after The Vikes QB, Brad Johnson, and keeping the pressure on him, non-stop. The result, multiple interceptions for The Pats, including one that prevented The Vikes from getting points on the board.

Now we need to turn these turnovers into points of our own.

10-0 Pats in the 2nd. Feels like the score should be higher.

Ok. Not too many words on this. Don't want to break the spell...

More later.


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Sunday, October 22, 2006

Pats win against Buffalo...

The Pats looked good against the Bills from what I saw today. I was at my Mom's house for an early dinner / birthday thing so I did not get to really sit and watch the game, though I did catch several of the big plays.

Tom Brady appeared to take a beating in this game and I noted that several members of Buffalo's offense seemed to have it out for Rodney Harrison today. Harrison became entangled with various players on The Bills side of the ball after the play had ended on several occasions, and during the plays where there was no extra-curricular activity afterwards, Harrison could be seen noticeably jawing with several members of the Bills offense after the play was over. Also, I used the word 'several' on several occasions in that last paragraph.

Pats RBs Maroney and Dillon both performed well in the running game and at one point Maroney pulled of a fantastic kick-off return for 74 yards.

The Troy Brown / Patriots all-time reception record watch continues. Troy got 2 in today's game. That leaves him needing only 4 more catches to take the Patriots all-time receiving record for his own.

All in all The Pats looked solid as I ran back and forth between my Mom's kitchen, the dinner table and the living-room TV. It was a good start for the 2nd half of their season.

Next week we'll face a very dangerous Minnesota Vikings team on the road. The Vikes upset the Seahawks today. This next game will be a challenge for The Patriots and it will be in front of a national audience on Monday Night Fooseball.

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Sunday, October 15, 2006

There's no Football today...

Well, there's no Patriots football today that is, but you can still read my NFL story over at Faster Than the World. Check it out. I hope you like it.

I am going to be getting some stuff done today I hope. We are, supposedly, after weeks of delay and frustrating waiting, going to be putting the finishing touches on our basement room today.

I can't tell you how good this is going to feel to get this thing done, not just because I'm sick of working on it, but because we can finally get rid of the piles of stuff that are all over the place in our house.

My Wife and I are both people who do not like a mess. If the kids make a mess with their toys and stuff, that is fine, but we want it picked up before bed. Otherwise, we're likely to put it all in a big trash bag and throw it out the door. Well over the past year that it's taken to do this project, the stuff that had been piled up in the basement, out of sight, has been piled up all over the house. It had to go somewhere while we worked.

This has caused an underlying current of stress for my Wife and I. It's just a daily thing that is there, silly or not. I hate seeing those piles and my Wife hates seeing those piles. We know we have no choice and they have to be there, but we hate them none-the-less, and it gets under your skin, and it causes a stressful environment. It's just one more thing you have to deal with.

Well hopefully after today, that problem will be rectified and it's going to be a relief.

And If I'm going to spend the day in the basement working, at least it's a bye week for The Pats.

Monday, October 09, 2006

Let me know when style points start to count in the NFL...

Today was a day off for me. Yup, I was one of the lucky ones. It was a good day. We took the kids to the top of Mount Wachusett, which is a 'mountain' located near our house.

I have a hard time referring to Mount Wachusett as an actual mountain, having been a frequent visitor to the real mountains out West (The Rockies), but whatever. It's still a nice place to take the kids and walk around.

It was a warm, clear day and we had some great views all around. We brought our lunch with us and had a little picnic and, the highlight of the trip, we saw a frog! Yes, that's right, a real. live. FROG! It was swimming in a walled in pond at the summit, along with some fish, and my goodness, it was breathtakingly exciting.

The things that my kids get excited about... it's funny. They came very close to swimming with the frog on several occasions, but thankfully they managed to stay out of the water.

After we came home, I did a little reading on the interwebs and I was surprised to read so much bitching about The Patriots game yesterday. The Pats won the game, but, it was not considered by many to be a 'good' win.


I don't get it. The way some people talk about The Patriots right now, you'd think they were 1-4, not 4-1. I read and hear a lot of, 'Yeah, they're winning, but it's not convincing. They're ugly wins.'

Phht. Whatever dude.

A lot of people seem to think The Patriots are going to stomp every team they face into the ground. They think they're going to run for 200 yards in every game and not allow a touchdown on defense. Well why not, I mean, they ran for umpteen-something yards last week, why didn't they do it again this week? Hmm. I don't know, maybe because they played against a different team this week?


Instead of being happy that the team got the win, against a divisional opponent no less, most of the stuff I read had people complaining about the way they got the win. Who cares? They way they got the win was by scoring more points than the other team. The last time I checked, style points don't count for shit in the NFL.


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Sunday, October 08, 2006

Yankees lose, Patriots win. Yay!

Ok, I could not say this until now but, REVERSE JINX!! Ha ha! It worked!

All that time I was going along saying that Detroit could not beat the Yankees and how if The Tigers lost, the A's could not beat the Yankees, it was the classic, 'Reverse Jinx'. And it worked. And I am happy.

My Wife is happy too because my 'Yankee Elimination' beard was getting really scruffy.

Now we can enjoy the rest of the MLB playoffs in peace, which is nice, but there's one thing I've gotta say about the baseball playoffs that really bugs me though. What is with all the champagne in the MLB playoffs? They love to pop the cork in baseball don't they?

There's a champagne shower for making it into the playoffs, then a champagne shower for each series win. I don't get that. I mean, I'm sure it's fun and all but here's the thing, YOU HAVEN'T WON ANYTHING YET!!

Do you ever see this in any other sport? You don't see people popping open the bubbly for advancing into the next round in hockey or football and I'm pretty sure it does not happen in basketball.

The champagne should not come out until you have won the championship and you're walking off the field / ice / court with the trophy held high over your head. That's just what I think.

The Pats got the 20-10 win against The Fish today to improve their overall record to 4-1. Meanwhile, The Bills and Jets both lost their games, so The Pats continue to pull away from the rest of the AFC East.

Todays' game was pretty much low stress for me. I had a good feeling about this one all week going in and even though The Patriots were facing The Fish, who always play The Pats tough, I was never really worried about this game, even when, at one point in the game, it was only a 3 point Patriots lead.

That is very unusual for me. Usually I'm acting like a maniac during games, but today I was quite calm throughout the entire game. I had the Lucky Pats Beer Mug and my lucky Patriots socks and my confidence in the Pats ability to get the win. It was quite zen-like. Ohhhhhmmmm.

The Pats running game was not really there this week, and the passing game was not spectacular but the bottom line is they got the job done. Kevin Faulk fumbled the ball on a return at one point in the game, which I was not happy to see, but that is Faulk. He has a tendency to fumble every now and then. Thankfully there was no damage done.

On the other hand, The Pats were able to take advantage of several Miami turnovers and turn them into points and that was pretty much the game. Overall I thought it was a good win for The Patriots heading into a bye week.

I watched some of the Philly / Dallas game. It was looking like Dallas was going to get a game-tying touchdown in the closing seconds of the game, but Dallas QB Drew Bledsoe had the ball intercepted in the end-zone and Philly took it all the way back for a back-breaking TD. Too bad for Drew. I kinda felt bad for him. Oh well.

I saw that Indy managed to beat Tennessee in that game, 14-13. Tennessee gave The Colts a game there. I was hoping Tennessee would hand Indianapolis their first loss. Disappointing.

I was surprised to see Green Bay take the 23-20 loss to St. Louis today and I was also surprised to see The J-E-T-S get annihilated by Jacksonville, 41-0. Oakland lost again by a score of 34-20 to San Fran and now they are sitting at 0-4. Good.

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Monday, October 02, 2006

Mondays are always better after a Patriots win...

What a difference a week makes. Last Monday, after The Pats were beaten by Denver, I was glum and depressed. This Monday, even though, well, it's Monday, I'm in a pretty good mood. A Patriots win on Sunday will do that for me.

Yes, I realize that it's not necessarily a good thing that the outcome of a football game can have a profound effect on my mood, but like it or not, that is the way it is.

The Pats looked good yesterday against the Bengals and I hope they will only continue to get better as the team continues to gel both on offense and defense. A win like yesterday's can be a big step in bonding the team and creating that special team-first attitude in the locker-room. You could tell that the 'us against them' mentality was already forming by reading some of the players comments. When you have guys like Tedy Bruschi saying things like (paraphrased), 'We know all we have are the people in this room,' you know the team is starting to come together.

Jarringly switching gears, I love how the sports media, ESPN in particular, seems to be falling all over itself to try and poke fun at some of the 'expert' picks that were made in the NFL's pre-season, as if they were not the ones that made those predictions in the first place. You know, the ones that have all turned out to be completely wrong? Yeah, those.

'Ha ha ha! Who were those fools who picked Miami to win the Superbowl this year? Miami is 1-3. What a bunch of dummies those NFL experts are. Ha ha h.. Oh. Wait. We made those picks? Ummmm... ahh. Yeah. Hmmm.'

It would be even more funny if Miami turned the tables on the 'experts' yet again and went on a little run over the next few weeks (when they're not playing The Patriots of course).

Stupid media.

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Sunday, October 01, 2006

Pats / Bengals: 1st Q

The 1st quarter of this game has been scary for the Patriots. The Bengals seem to be able to move the ball up and down the field, almost at will. The bright spot has been that the defense has been able to hold Cincy to field goals. 6-0, Cincy.

Offensively, I thought the Patriots first drive looked good, except for the scary almost fumble by Faulk. The running game was moving the ball. Then The Pats decided to try and go for the big gainer on 3rd down instead of giving it back to their running backs. Result: incomplete. Punt. The Pats need to work the running game and keep Cincy's offense off the field. I hope they will quit trying to go for the home-run and just grind it down the field, with the running game and quick passes, like it's looks like they've been capable of doing...

The Pats need to take care of the ball too. Faulk almost fumbled it away on the 1st drive and the 2nd drive ended with an interception, not Tom Brady's fault, as it was tipped, but that does not mean Cincy has to give the ball back...

That's my armchair quarterback opinion for the 1st quarter. Time for the Pats to get their attitude going in the 2nd.

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Another rainy Sunday...

It's another rainy Sunday here so I've been stuck inside, looking out the windows at the wetness, thinking about all the jobs I have to do outside. Oh well, what are you gonna do?

My kids are watching a movie and my Wife is painting the stairway that leads to the basement. I got it all sanded down last week, now it's her turn. She does the detail work.

I've been watching a little bit of the Jets / Colts game. It's a rare event, but I'm actually rooting for the Jets in this one. I have a strong dislike for Peyton Manning and even though the Jets are a division rival, I think a Colts loss would provide more benefit to The Patriots, as far as future playoff implications go.

One thing I have noticed so far this football season, that has kind of been bugging me, is the officiating in the games. I feel like the games are way too over-officiated right now. I feel like it has gotten to the point where the officials are now getting in the way of the game being played. I am not just talking about The Patriots games I've watched either. I'm seeing it all over the place. I've seen it just today in the Jets / Colts game. The slightest amount of contact by a Defensive Back on a Receiver seems to end up with a flag getting thrown for pass interference.

I know the rules in the NFL are skewed toward the offense, but come on, are teams no longer allowed to play defense anymore? Are you still allowed to try and stop a receiver from catching the ball? I thought football was a contact sport, but I'm seeing tons of rouging the passer calls, illegal contact calls, unnecessary roughness, etc etc.

Guys, it's football. People get hit in football. That is what the game is all about. The refs need to let the players play the game and get the hell out of the way with their damn yellow laundry.

Pats / Bengals at 4 o'clock. This game has me a little nervous. The Bengals are a good team and The Pats will have their hands full in this one. Tom Brady does not usually have bad back-to-back games and hopefully another week with his new receivers, as well as focusing on cleaning up the mistakes in the passing game will pay off. Hopefully the running game will get back on track this week as well.

Defensively, well, you know the drill. Stop the run and make them go to the air. Of course, as usual, half of our secondary seems to be injured, but isn't that the way it always seems to be for The Pats? At least now, after all the injuries this team has had in the secondary the last few years, the players that are coming in as replacements, like Hank Poteat, are practically regulars at this point, so hopefully there won't be too much of a drop off.

I used the word 'hopefully' a lot in those last few paragraphs, so how about one more. Hopefully The Pats will get the win today.


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Tuesday, September 26, 2006

Moving right along...

Now that I've had a full day to sulk about The Patriots loss to the Broncos this past weekend, I'm back on track and ready for the next game.

That last game was not enjoyable, to put it nicely. The Broncos defense did to The Pats what the Pats like to do to other teams: take away what you're good at and make you have to do something you don't want to do. In The Pats case, that 'something' is obviously throwing the ball instead of running it, which is kind of an odd thing to say with Tom Brady as your QB, but if Brady's got nobody that can get open for him to deliver the ball to, what is he supposed to do?

If there was one thing that really bothered me about last week's game, it was seeing Brady so emotional and frustrated throughout the game. Brady is the guy you expect to remain cool, calm and collected. Seeing him angrily ripping off his chin-straps and screaming at the refs was an unsettling thing to watch.

The passing game is going to be a work in progress until Brady and his new receiving corps can get on the same page. I can only hope that this situation will continue to improve throughout the season as Brady gets used to his new targets.

The Pats have a tough game coming up this week vs. The Bengals. (When was the last time you heard someone say something like that about The Bengals?) I am glad to see that the Bengals are respectable again, though I hope they will suck this weekend.

Defensively, I think The Patriots are in good shape. I am not expecting them to shut down Cincy's offense, but The Pats D should be able to keep the game within reach. That means The Pats are going to have to be able to match up with Cincy on offense and get some points on the board... It would be nice to see passing attempts end up in completions this week as well as field-goal attempts actually making it through the uprights.

I know as a fan, I have become a little bit spoiled by the last few years of The Patriots success. I expect to see The Pats come out and steam-roll teams, but the fact is, they have never done that, even when they were going 14-2. They are just not that kind of a team.

The Pats are 2-1 right now and honestly, that is nothing complain about. The hand-wringing that is going on over the state of the team, something I am guilty of myself, is a little bit overboard at this point in the year. 2-1 is not a bad record at this point in the season, so lets keep things in perspective.

Things will get straightened out in Foxboro. Like I wrote in my NFL column on Faster Than the World last Sunday, it's not even October yet, so remain calm.


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Sunday, September 24, 2006

Pats / Donkeys 4th Q: Oh my god

Dude. I can't believe what I am watching in this game.

The Pats are just falling apart here. What is it about Denver? It's like they have kryptonite in their uniforms or something. I don't get it. The Pats don't play like this against anybody else in the league.

I would like to twist my own head off right now because this game is making lose my mind.

My wife asked me why I am torturing myself. Why don't I just go to bed?

Because I can't.

It's not like I'm going to sleep anyway. I'm just going to lie there in bed and wonder what's going on in the game, so I may as well watch it.

By the way, my hatred of the Broncos continues to grow as they jaunt around Gillette stadium, obviously making remarks at the fans around the field and trash talking with The Pats players.

I fucking hate them.

Maybe we won't win this game. I hope we see them again in the playoffs. One of these days we'll turn things around against this Denver team. Miami used to own us at one time too... Not anymore.

Can we at least score a TD here?

The Pats go to the 2 min drill and, thank-you Football Gods, my request is granted.

Ok. Now, I don't want to sound greedy but how about a little Broncos turnover. Maybe with a recovery by The Pats D? Please?

Well, there's 2 min left and the score is 17-7, Broncos. Somehow I kind of doubt The Pats are going to come back in this game. Of course, miracles can happen, but... it doesn't look good. Fuck.

This has been a rough game. Offensively, the running game was looking ok early, but then Dillon got hurt. I'm not sure what happened to him but he did not return after leaving the game. He suffered some kind of arm injury... Rookie Laurence Maroney has not done much since and the passing game is not clicking. I hate all the harping that goes on about the Deion Branch situation, but it's starting to become painful what the lack of quality receivers is doing to The Pats offense. As much as I love him, you can't rely on Troy Brown as your number one receiver. There were a lot of disappointing drops in this game as well. In some cases, receivers were getting hit on the numbers and could not hang on to the ball.

Defensively, I thought The Pats did a good job. The D is the only reason the Pats were able to stay in this game at all. The D kept things close, but after a continual stream of 3 and outs on offense, sooner or later, the other team is going to score, and they did. It sucks but that is the way it is.

Even though they are a 2-1 team, The Patriots are dealing with a little bit of adversity right now.

How will this season's team handle it? We'll find out. Next up, The Bengals.


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3rd Quarter: Are you kidding me??

The Patriots just cannot get a break in this game. It's fucking ridiculous. It feels like everything is going against them.

I thought for sure the Pats had a safety on a punt to Denver, but no. It was ruled that the Denver player was stopped at the 1 fucking yard line. Jeez... Then you have a pass to Troy Brown going incomplete with a Bronco defender practically surfing on his back... No call. Un Believeable.

A Patriots defensive back defends a pass and it's pass interference. Are you not allowed to play defense in this game anymore??? WHAT THE HELL? This game is fucking insane.

A pass to a Bronco receiver is jarred loose. Tedy Bruschi picks it up, but, it's not a fumble. Nope. It's an incomplete pass... WHAT!?

I'm starting to lose it. I'm stopping here because I need to get a beer. I have not had one yet. Maybe that's the problem. The lucky Patriots beer mug is not present.

Well I'll fix that promptly...

The Patriots are being too stubborn with the running game. They are not getting shit with Maroney in there. He has not been able to break free. The Pats should go to the air and get the tight ends more involved in the passing game. The Pats receivers really need to step up here too. I feel for Tom Brady right now. He's got nobody out there that he can count on except for Troy Brown. He seems to be the only receiver out there that is consistently making catches for The Pats.

The penalties in this game have been ridiculous. Kevin Faulk pulls off a fine punt return, getting the ball inside The Broncos side of the field, but with 3 penalties on the play, two of which are against the Broncos, somehow it's all offsetting. Do over.

This game is slipping away. Here comes the 4th Quarter... The Patriots need a turnover in this game. Badly.

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2nd quarter: Running in cement...

If the 1st quarter was irritating, the 2nd quarter was infuriating. The score at the half, 10-0, Denver.

The Pats just can't seem to get in a rhythm on offense. It looked like they might get at least a field goal, only to have it blocked.

The Patriots defense seems to be coming within inches of getting to Broncos QB Jake Plummer, but you know, there's no tackling of QB's allowed in the NFL anymore, so any kind of contact at all is being called as a penalty.

The Pats need to come out in the 2nd half and get something going or this thing will be out of reach.

The offense is looking stagnant against the Broncos right now. We need to put together a drive and sustain it for 6.

Damn I hate Denver. (understatement)

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Pats / Donkeys: 1'st Quarter..

Well let me say, right off the bat, that the radio is still out of sync with the television. I've tried three different stations and the closest one to the game is 102.1 out of Springfield.

This game has been a slug-fest in the 1st quarter. Both offenses have shown flashes but neither one has been able to finish off a drive.

NBC is going nuts with the Deion Branch angle. Jeez guys give it up will ya? It's starting to get on my nerves. In fact, NBC's coverage in general is annoying. I am so tired of the gimmicks and exploding graphics, and sideline reporters and blah, blah, blah, blah, blah. Just show me the fucking game ya bunch o' knobs.

Ok. time for the 2nd quarter. Time for a Patriots score or 5.

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Pats / Donkeys: Revenge time

The Patriots will face off against the Denver Broncos tonight at The Razor in Foxboro. This is the 'vengance' game for last years playoff defeat in Denver. Of course, the outcome of tonight's game will not change the past, but if The Pats can win, it will certainly help to erase the painful memory of that playoff loss.

On offense, The Patriots running game has looked great in the first two games. The passing game, on the other hand, has been a work in progress, though I expect that is an area that will continue to get better and better as Tom Brady gets more work in with his new receivers Chad Jackson and Doug Gabriel.

Defensively, The Pats have been ferocious at times, but inconsistent play, particularly in the tackling department, has allowed opponents to keep the stress-o-meter for us fans up near the top of the red-line.

I'm sure there was a lot of work done in that area over the past week down in Foxboro. If the problem the team has had with finishing off tackles in the last two games has still not been cleaned up this week, I will be very surprised.

The Broncos come into Foxboro at 1-1, with a loss to St. Louis in Week 1 and a win over Kansas City in Week 2. It's hard to judge this Broncos team right now. They are certainly not as scary as some of the Broncos teams The Pats have faced in the past, but they are still going to be a handful. This is going to be a tough game, no doubt.

Hopefully The Pat defense can get to The Broncos QB, Jake Plummer, and rattle him into making some mistakes. On the offense, let's keep the running game going and get some more consistency in the passing game. There's my forte folks, statements of the obvious.

Personally, I always hate to play The Broncos. It is unavoidable fact, as much as I hate to say it, that The Broncos have pretty much owned The Pats over the years. At one point in time, after The Pats had not beaten Denver in over a decade, it got to the point where it was almost embarrassing.

I will always remember the scene that The Broncos former tight-end, Shannon Sharpe, made during one particular beating The Pats took at the hands of The Broncos. As the Pats were getting demolished on the field, Sharpe was on the sidelines shouting at the cameras, 'Call in the National Guard, because we are killing The Patriots'


Things have kind of evened out somewhat over the last few seasons between these two teams, but The Broncos still seem to take away more wins than losses when playing against The Patriots. Actually our fantastic TV announcers, who I am about to turn down in favor of Gil Santos and Gino Cappelletti on the radio, just reminded me that The Broncos have won 4 out of the last 5 against The Pats.

And I hate that.

The Patriots are now over .500 as a team over the course of their entire history. Lets keep it going tonight.

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NFL Gameday picks over at FTTW...

Hey what's up everybody? Hope your weekend is going good. I just wanted to post a reminder to check out my NFL column, 'The End Zone', over at Faster Than the World.

Today I went out on a limb and did something I hardly ever do, I made a bunch of game-day picks. So head over there and check them out, then tell me how wrong I was about such-and-such a game in the comments!

More on the Pats / Donkeys game later. Gotta sand some drywall this afternoon. (Wicked fun.)

Oh, and have you noticed I've started the last three posts with the phrase, 'what's up?'

What's up with that?

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Tuesday, September 19, 2006

Over .500 all-time. Sounds nice...

With the Patriots win over the Jets this past weekend, The Pats now have an all-time winning percentage as a team over the course of their entire history (357-356-9).

That is pretty damn cool.

Lets' keep it going this Sunday against Denver.

Other than The Pats, things have been kind of slow around here lately... Not a whole lot going on that's really worth writing about, unless you want to hear about me mowing the lawn or working on my never-ending basement project. Yes, that's right, it's still not finished. Oy, don't get me started...

It was good to see the Red Sox take 3 out of 4 this weekend in New York. The MFY may clinch the AL East, again, but at least it won't be against The Sox.

Gotta take the small victories where we can get them.

The Sox start a series with the Twins tonight that I was hoping would have a little more meaning to it a few weeks ago. Hard to believe there is only a little more than a week and a half left till the end of the regular baseball season.

Of course, there is the playoffs. Just because the Sox are out of it, that does not mean I won't still follow baseball in the post-season.

My backup team to the Red Sox is the Twins this year, so I hope they can get in as the Wildcard. In the West I'll be rooting for San Diego, so I hope they can get in too.

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Monday, September 18, 2006

Pats hang on for win against Jets...

Wow. What a fucked up game that was. The Patriots / Jets game went from cruise mode to total stress mode in the span of a few minutes.

The Pats had a 17 point lead as they walked off the field at the half. They scored another 7 in the 3rd quarter to make the score 24-0, Pats.

Suddenly, the next thing you know, the Jets score 14 in the 3rd and then tack on another 3 in the 4th to make the score 24-17.

Either The Patriots defense forgot how to tackle or The Jets slathered up in vaseline in the locker room during the half, because some of those plays, with the way the Jets offenders were able to elude The Patriots defenders, were just plain nuts. Guys were missing tackles all over the field.

How it happened does not matter, only the outcome does, and I had to sweat out the end of the game hoping that The Pats would hang on for the win.

Did I mention the little bet that I had going with Michele over at Faster Than The World? The loser had to write a 4 stanza poem about how much they loved the opposite team. When the Jets cut the lead to 7 points, I started trying to think about what kind of nice things I could say about The Jets and I was not having much success at it.

The Pats offense went into grind mode with running backs Dillon, Maroney and Faulk in the 4th quarter to close out the game and I gotta say, the Pats running game was very impressive again. When the Patriots want to work the clock, they work the clock, and there's not a lot the other team can do about it.

The Pats drove to inside the Jets 20 and tried to seal the deal with field goal, which would have given the Pats a 10 point lead with under two min left on the clock, only to have rookie Stephen Gostowski's kick blocked. Welcome to what we like to refer to as, a high-pressure situation, rookie. Thankfully this kick was to maintain the lead, not to tie or take a lead.

The Jets got one last shot to tie the game but Tedy Bruschi was on the field for The Patriots and it was his interception of a Chad Pennington pass that finally put an end to the stress.

End result: 24-17, Pats.


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Sunday, September 17, 2006

You want poems?

I got fuckin' poems...

Well thankfully, The Patriots won the game today against The Jets, 24-17, meaning I did not have to write a poem about how much I love the NY Jets, which clearly, I do not.

Michele on the other hand, who is a Jets fan, was not so lucky, so in keeping up her end of the bet, here is her poem. Enjoy.

Ode to the New England Patriots

I’m supposed to be nice in this poem
but that’s kinda hard, you know
when I have to write about a team
whose past includes blesdoe

and not to mention also
the various forms of hells
that I would have to think about
in order to mention parcells

plus the fact that its’s new england
which includes boston in its place
which makes me think of the red sox
which makes me want to stab your face

so I’m trying hard to be nice here
and use language like a lady
but the only thing I can come up with
is “do you have naked pics oftom brady?”

Ok, maybe that was not the over-flowing fountain of love for The Patriots that I was hoping for, but I have to give Michele credit because that's a lot better than I would have done if the tables were turned.

When the Jets cut the Pats former 24-0 lead to a measly 7 points at 24-17, I started trying to think of nice things that I could say about The Jets if I had to write a poem about them and the only thing I could think of is that their uniform is green. Losing that game would have been bad enough, but then having to follow it up by writing a poem about The Jets? Oy. That would have been rough.

Maybe we'll have a rematch when The Pats play The Jets again in November...

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Pats / Jets at 4 o'clock, so let's rock...

Hey what's up interwebs? I just wanted to get in something quick here before the Pats / Jets game at 4 PM today.

I've been very busy doing chores and getting stuff done around the house so that I can kick back and watch the Pats game without interruption this afternoon.

4:00 games totally rock.

This Pats / Jets game is going to be very interesting. First off, you've got the whole AFC East divisional rival thing going on, plus it will be former Pats defensive coordinator, now Jets head coach, Eric Mangini's first game vs his former mentor, Patriots head coach Bill Belichick. On top of that, it's Pats / Jets and that right there is enough to get the blood pumping.

Ok, that's all I've got right now. I've got to get prepped for the game. Be sure and swing over to Faster Than The World and check out my post in The End Zone. It's all about the great, wise and magnificent Football Gods. Hope you like it.

While you're over there, Michele and I are trying to come up with a fun little wager between ourselves. Michele is one of the co-founders of FTTW and she happens to be a Jets fan, so if you've got some ideas on how we can torture each other, based on the outcome of Pats / Jets game, let us know in the comments over there. Let's keep things within reason though. Like I'm not going to root for the Jets all season if I lose, so think 'fun', not 'ridiculous'...

To close things out, thank you Football Gods, as always.


The bet is set: The loser is going to have to make a post with a haiku praising the other team.


Update 2:
It was decided that bet was too wussy. So the loser must now write a four stanza poem about your love of the others team and post it on both sites.


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Monday, September 11, 2006

Patriots trade Branch to Seattle in exchange for 1st round pick...

Well The Patriots have finally come to a resolution in dealing with holdout wide receiver Deion Branch. They have traded him to Seattle in return for The Seahawks 2007 first round draft pick.

It is good to have this situation finished and done with, but I have to say, I was hoping that The Pats were going to eventually work out a deal with Branch that would have kept him in a Patriots uniform. I think the team has a good chance to go all the way this year and Branch could have provided the Pats with a great offensive weapon at wide receiver.

At least the Patriots will get something for him, though with a lot of people picking The Seahawks to go far into the playoffs this year, possibly even the Superbowl, I'm not sure how much value that additional pick is going to get them. Only time will tell on that.

In the meantime, even without Branch, I'm hoping to see The Patriots passing game improve as the team gets receivers such as Chad Jackson back from injury and Doug Gabriel comes up to speed with The Patriots system.

In Belichick We Trust

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Sports talk radio can bite me...

Only on sports talk radio do you have to feel bad about 'not winning good enough'.

I was listening to WEEI's Dennis and Calahan on the radio this morning while driving in to work as they interviewed / interrogated Tom Brady about his performance in yesterday's game, which happened to be a win over The Pats' divisional rival, The Buffalo Bills.

As I was listening to Brady's responses to the radio hosts' questions, I could not help but notice how sorry and apologetic Brady's voice sounded as the hosts of the show sat back and critiqued the mistakes he had made during game.

Let me say again, THE PATRIOTS WON THE FUCKING GAME, but from the tone of the interview and the sound of Brady's voice, you'd think The Pats had lost by 10 points.

Yeah, Brady was not exactly en-fuego Sunday. He was not his usual, sharp self and he was undoubtedly disappointed with the outcome of some of his plays, but Brady will work to evaluate and correct his mistakes on his own and with the help of his coaches. I'm pretty sure he does not need some idiot radio talk-show host to assist him in pointing out the problems with his game.

Oh wait, one of the show hosts is a football coach for 9 year old kids, so he's got the cred to pick apart 2 Time Superbowl MVP Tom Brady's performance yesterday... Phht. What a joke.

Brady made mistakes yesterday, but he also had some big plays too, and bottom line: The Pats won. Who cares by how many points it was or how it happened? It was a good comeback victory. End of discussion. Move on. I can't stand hearing people complain that a team did not win 'good enough'. An ugly win is still a win.

This is why I don't listen to sports radio. The hosts of these shows don't deserve to hold Tom Brady's clipboard on the sidelines during a game, yet here they are questioning him about the mistakes he made during a game that he helped his team to win.

Listening to a bunch of self-proclaimed 'experts' sit around with the benefit of hindsight and rip a team and the guys who were actually on the field and coaching the game... it's not for me. If it were not for the The Boomer Esiason / Tom Brady / Coach Belichick interviews on 'Patriots Mondays,' I would not listen to sports radio at all.

"Other than that I have no strong opinions no this subject"

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Sunday, September 10, 2006

Pats / Bills 2nd Half: Comeback time...

This post was a bit delayed because as soon as the game ended, I had to get out and cut my lawn. Hey, that's life.

The Pats came out in the 2nd half and were still sputtering a little on offense but the defense continued to get better as the game continued. The play of the game was a huge defensive stop by the Patriots, when The Bills decided to go for it on a 4th and 1 at the Pats 7 yard line. That was the turning point of the game.

A score of any kind by The Bills at that point would have put a lot of pressure on the Pats passing game, which was obviously not at it's best today. A field goal would have made things difficult for The Pats. A TD probably would have put the game out of reach.

Thankfully, the Pats defense kept The Bills from putting up more points on the board. On the following drive, Tom Brady started to click with his receivers and The Pats were able to drive 93 yards for a TD. That cut the Bills lead to 17-14.

The Pats had gained the momentum and even though they were still a bit inconsistent at times, they got the job done. A field goal by their rookie kicker, Steve Gostkowski, tied it up 17-17, and on the next series, The Pats came up with a safety after sacking the Bills QB in the end-zone to make it 19-17, Pats.

As the 4th quarter ticked away The Pats were able to mount a long, clock killing drive. They moved into position to put more points on the board, but thankfully it was unnecessary. The Pats had been able to work the clock down to under two minutes and were able to kneel on the ball to take the 19-17 score into the locker-room as the final outcome of the game.

As for me, this game was stressful to watch. I got that familiar, tight chested feeling that often happens to me during games like this. Don't worry though, I'm not going to be keeling over any time soon.

My baby daughter got to take in her first ever Patriots game and I think she liked it. She seemed to particularly enjoy the part where I ran around the room a few times after Brady had tossed a TD pass to Pats running back Kevin Faulk, cutting the score at the time to 17-14, Bills.

Offensively, The Pats were inconsistent overall, but they made the plays when it counted. The lack of any kind of intimidating receiver that could keep the secondary honest seemed to really hurt The Patriots passing game. This is an area of concern but I have a feeling we will see an improvement next week.

Defensively, things started off slow, but continued to get better and better as the game wore on. The Pats D seemed to become more ferocious with each ensuing play.

Both the offense and the defense seemed to be out of rhythm at the start of the game, almost as if the team was remembering how the pace of a real NFL game worked. The good news is that the play on both sides of the ball improved throughout the game. I'll take that as a good sign and leave it at that.

One interesting thing to note was that the crowd noise at The Razor was able to cause Buffalo some problems on offense today. Incredibly, the new NFL commissioner talked in a pre-game interview about the fact that he is looking for ways to prevent the fans from having this kind of an impact on the game. He is effectively trying to take away a big part of the home-field advantage, which is the 12th Man, THE FANS WHO ARE PAYING TO SEE THE GAME. Insanely stupid. That is the only way I can think to describe what my feelings are about this plan the comish has hatched...

Game one is in the books. 15 to go. Damn I'm glad The Patriots are back.

(Oh, and the lawn looks great!)


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Pats / Bills - 1st Half thoughts...

Some quick thoughts on the Pats / Bills game at half-time:

17 - 7 Bills at the half. It's been frustrating to watch.

- Right off the bat, the radio broadcast on WBCN is totally out of sync with the TV broadcast. The play is over on the TV before the call even starts on the radio. I switched over to 102.1 (WAQY) out of Springfield and it is a lot better. It's still a little behind the play, but not horrible. I can at least watch the game with Gil and Gino calling it this way. You'd think the primary station, WBCN, would be right on and in sync with the plays, but, for some reason it's totally off. Whatever. 102.1 works and I can watch the game without having to listen to the boobs calling the game on the TV.

- The Pats offense is totally out of sync as well. The running game has shown some sparks here and there, but mostly seems to be inconsistent. The passing game looks awful right now. Brady is having balls batted down left and right and has narrowly avoided getting picked off on several occasions. Things were off to a bad start right out of the gates with Brady fumbling the ball on the opening drive. That resulted in a Bills TD less than 12 seconds into the game. Sheesh.

- Defense: After starting the game with some inconsistent play as well, they seemed to have shorn things up as the game has worn on. Early on, The Pats looked like they had the Bills stopped behind the line of scrimmage on several occasions but somehow The Bills have managed to make something out of it. The Pats seemed to have stopped that kind of stuff from happening as the 2nd Quarter got going.

- There's not much good to say right now. Thankfully, it's only half-time and there's time for The Pats to get back in this thing.

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Friday, September 08, 2006

God-Damm I love Rodney Harrison

This is from a story in the Boston Herald today that talked about how things work in the Patriots locker room.

One locker room scene yesterday had Willie Andrews kindly agreeing to an interview. The first-year defensive back was about five words into his first answer, when Rodney Harrison walked by.

“You don’t have anything to say,” Harrison said, without breaking stride. “You’re a rookie. You haven’t done anything yet. What could you have to talk about?”

Andrews gave a sheepish look back at the 13-year-veteran.

“I guess I have nothing to say,” Andrews said.

Dude. I fucking love this shit. Rodney Harrison is 'THE BALLS'. He makes me want to swoon. (In a very manly, masculine sort of way of course...)

And how about Tedy Bruschi, out there on the field practicing while wearing a cast on his broken wrist with the words, "Bear Down," written on it.

The Patriots are going to win the Superbowl this year.

Meanwhile the always bright and sunny Boston press is doing it's best convince Sox fans that the season is over and not to waste their energy hoping for the Red Sox to make the playoffs. Well I say, FUCK THAT. Was it over when the Germans bombed Pearl Harbor? Hell no.

Ok, so maybe the Red Sox playoff chances are slim to none. I'm going to keep rooting for them and hoping they get in anyway. I'm just kinda crazy like that. 'Some people say that I'm nuts, I'm crazy, I'm a little wacked... Welcome to the show!'

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Thursday, August 31, 2006

Eagles release Pinkston, too bad he's still effing hurt...

The Philadelphia Eagles released receiver Todd Pinkston yesterday. When I saw the article headline, my first reaction was, 'cool, he could wind up with the Pats'.

Then I read the article. The guy is hurt. He's recovering from a torn achilles tendon and is still playing with pain.

'F that,' I said to myself, 'Next..'

Too bad. The Pats could use another decent receiver.

Unlike most folks, I have a feeling the Deion Branch holdout situation is going to be a prolonged problem. The Pats will move on without him and I think they will be ok, but at the same time, it is a shame because Branch could really be the key piece for the Pats offense that makes the whole puzzle fit together.

The Pats have depth on the O-line, they look to have a great stable of running backs, the tight-ends look phenomenal so far, and of course, you've got Tom Brady at QB. The receiver situation is the weak spot, but the addition of Branch to the receiver corps could make a world of difference. Unfortunately, you can't count on him showing up, so we move forward without him.

The Pats will play their final preseason game against the NY Giants tonight. The key to the game tonight is very simple: NO INJURIES!!! Thank you. And a special thanks to YOU oh wise, powerful and always merciful Football Gods.

[The Football Gods like to be buttered up a little before the real games start. They appreciate that.]

In Belichick We Trust

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Sunday, August 27, 2006


Hey what's up everybody. Hope you are having a nice weekend.

Today's been a pretty laid-back day, which is somewhat rare for me. I'm usually going somewhere or doing some kind of chore, but this weekend was just fun. No working on anything.

I went to see The Pats game yesterday vs. The Washington Redskins. It was a good game. The Patriots flat-out destroyed Washington. It was quite an impressive show. Of course, it's only pre-season, so it is totally meaningless. Teams can look unstoppable in the pre-season and then go 2-14 on the year. Not that I think the Pats will have a bad year, I think they look to be in good shape for the season.

It's been a cloudy, rainy day around here and I've just been kicking around the house not doing much of anything. I've been feeling pretty tired today because I did not get home from the game till about 2:30 AM this morning. That's way past my bedtime. Thankfully it was a Saturday night game so I had all day today to get back to normal. I even took a nap. I can't remember the last time I took a real nap that involved actually falling asleep.

My Wife and I started moving some stuff out of the living areas of our house and down into our basement today. Our basement is not finished, but it is to the point where we can start using it.

Our house has been a mess for almost a year now as I have been working down there, turning the basement into a room. My Wife is a school teacher and has a friggin ton of... stuff (I wanted to say shit, but it's not really shit, it's all useful stuff for school, it's just that there is a LOT of it.) and it had to go somewhere while I worked, so we've had boxes stacked up all around the house.

My Wife and I are both kind of neat and orderly type people. We don't like messes. We like things to be organized and put away where they belong. I guess you could say we are both somewhat obsessive perhaps, not OCD obsessive, but we definitely don't like having the house a big mess. We are both that way so it's never a problem, but having these stacks of boxes all over the place has been a constant irritation to each of us. Today we started moving the boxes back where they belong. It felt so good to get those things out of the way and back in the basement where they belong.. It's like we got part of our house back and actually, if you think about it, we did!

I've only got a couple things left to do down there and the basement will be 100% done. We're going to put in some cabinets and shelves and also a large table for the kids to do arts and crafts and stuff like that on. Once that is done, a little more paint, and that fucker is done.

I've been jamming down there with my guitars a little. It's pretty echoey down there. I need to get some stuff on the walls and on the floors to keep the sound from bouncing around so much.

I'll probably write a little more about the Pats game later on. A good time was had by all, other than ingesting maybe one too many processed meat products. I'm going to download the pics I took at the game from the camera and if there are any interesting ones in there I'll post a few.

Enjoy the rest of the weekend gang!

Saturday, August 26, 2006

Tailgate prep is serious business...

The last few days I've been getting ready for the Pats game, just getting things planned out, who's bringing what, etc, and my Wife has been having a great time making fun of me.

'You don't plan out vacations as well as this tailgate thing. I'm going to have to come see this extravaganza someday,' she says.

Hey, tailgating is serious business! If it's not planned out right, you'll show up to the stadium and there'll be a bunch of guys looking at each other saying, 'I thought you were supposed to bring the beer!'

Can you imagine the horror?

Well, that's where I come in. It's my job to make sure that kind of thing does not happen. The last few days, I've been making sure the sausages, peppers, onions, various meat and meat by-product based foods, as well as other artery-clogging substances, and of course, beer, are all being taken care of.

Don't make fun. Tailgating is serious business my friends...

Ok, maybe the whole planning thing got a little over the top when my Dad started sending out spreadsheets of who's bringing what...

My sister-in-law and her friend will be coming to the game with us. When she saw the list of the suggested items we'd be cooking, she asked if maybe she should bring any fruit or vegetables to kind of even out the 'meat-fest,' as she called it.

'Hmmm,' I said, 'you mean like pineapples and limes stuff? Are you going to make some frozen tropical drinks or something? That would be cool.'


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Friday, August 25, 2006

Happy Friday, Pats latest gambit...

Hey what's up inter-dweebs. Did you ever notice I'm usually in a good mood on Friday? Well duh, most people like Friday right?

Hope everybody is having a good one.

I'm pretty psyched because I'm going to see The Pats in pre-season game 3 tomorrow vs The Washington Redskins. Yeah, I know, it's only pre-season, but I'm still excited to go. I'll take any chance to go and see the Pats, pre-season or not. Game 3 is usually the best of the pre-season games.

Hopefully the weather will be ok. Earlier reports called for rain but the weather report has a sun with a cloud on it right now, so hopefully that will hold out. I'm planning on bringing my camera so if I manage to get any pics that are interesting I will post them up, hopefully not to long after the game.

This latest maneuver by the Pats in the Deion Branch hold out, giving him the ability to seek a trade, is very interesting. Personally I like it.

I like Branch as a player, but I think maybe he has an over inflated idea of what he should be paid. Of course, from his perspective, I'm sure he sees how things worked out with Richard Seymour's contract after he held out, and how his former team-mate David Givens got paid down in Tenessee and figures, he's due.

Well, to tell the truth, Branch is due. I'm not saying the Pats should not pay him, but the Pats have their idea of what he's worth, and Branch has his. Some people say, hey, the team has plenty of money, they're millions of dollars under the salary cap, why don't they just pay him what he wants? They will, but they will pay him what the team thinks he is worth, not the other way around.

Personally, I like that. I like that The Pats do not cave in to players. That is just me. I root for the laundry baby, not the name on the back of the jersey. I have faith that Belichick and Pioli know what they're doing. Call it blind faith if you want to. Three Superbowl titles have earned them that faith, at least from this fan anyway.

This latest move puts the ball squarely in Branch's court. Feel free to go out and test the market Deion and find out what you can really get out there. Find out what you're really worth and get back to us.

I mean, why not? Branch is sure as hell not contributing anything to the team right now, despite his contractual obligations to do so, so if The Pats can trade Deion for a player or players that are actually going to be on the field and producing, why not? Maybe one Deion Branch can get the Pats a couple decent players that will actually get on the field. How about a receiver or maybe a linebacker and a 2nd round draft pick?

During the Belichick Era, The Pats have always been about the team, not the player, and the bottom line is, one way or another, things will work out. The Pats, the team will be ready to go in September, wether Branch is still a Patriot or not.

In Belichick We Trust

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Wednesday, August 23, 2006

Pats release Gramatica, go with rookie kicker...

To the surprise of, well, nobody, The Pats released kicker Martin Gramatica, deciding to go with the younger, stronger leg of rookie Stephen Gostkowski to take over the Pats' kicking duties.

I think The Pats made the right move in going with the rookie. It's pretty much a no-brainer really.

It would have been one thing if Gostkowski was missing his kicks, but he showed accuracy on field-goals and the ability to put the ball into the end-zone on kickoffs. You've got to go with the younger, stronger leg of the rookie kicker over the, hate to say it because I am one, older guy.

It's not that Gramatica did a bad job in camp, in fact, he did quite well I thought. Even though he was cut by the team, I think The Pats actually did right by Gramatica. They brought him in, gave him a chance to show what he could still do and that he was healthy, and they let him go with plenty of time to maybe hook on with another team. Based on his performance, I would not be surprised at all if Gramatica draws some interest around the league from teams looking for a kicker.

The bottom line is that Gostkowski has nothing but upside, whereas Gramatica, while he showed that he can still perform, is on the downside of his career. Had The Pats gone with Gramatica, they would have been in the same spot as they are now in a year or two. In going with Gostkowski, The Patriots kicking position will hopefully be in good hands for the next several years.

In Belichick We Trust

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Monday, August 21, 2006

Weekend wrap up

Hey whats up everybody! Hope you had a nice weekend, outside of Red Sox baseball related matters anyway.

I did not get to see the Pats / Cardinals game on Saturday because I was out that night, but I caught the end of the game on the radio as I drove home. I was somewhat surprised at the outcome to be honest. I was expecting a little bit more of a challenge from the Cardinals, but I'm sure not going to complain about a game that was totally dominated by The Patriots, who won 30-3.

I'll be going in person to the next Pats game, vs. The Redskins, this upcoming weekend. That should be a lot of fun. The 3rd pre-season game is usually the final 'tune up' game for the regular season and it generally features the longest amount of playing time from the starters, so I am looking forward to that.

I went to see Rollins Band play in Boston Saturday night and had a super-fantastic time.

This was my first time seeing Rollins live and he did not disappoint. It was an incredibly good show. I'm not going to say too much about it right now as I will be posting more on that later. I was working on an incredibly over-long post all about the show last night, so look for something on that a little later in the week.

I did not see any of the Red Sox game last night since I was busy doing other things, and you know what, that is just fine. I was irritated when I got up and saw the score this morning, but, I would have been even more irritated if I had actually sat and watched that debacle.

I am not throwing in the towel on The Sox playoff hopes, but if they don't get things turned around soon, they'll be playing for pride in September.

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Saturday, August 19, 2006

Wearing number 55...

Linebacker Junior Seau un-retired himself and signed with The Patriots yesterday.

Hmmm. Interesting.

That's all I've got to say about this right now. I don't think it's a bad thing, but I'm not going to jump up and down with excitement over it either.

ESPN's Len Pasquarelli calls it, 'desperate'. Well, yeah dude. Have you seen who's playing at inside linebacker for the Patriots right now? Chad Brown and Monty Beisel just ain't getting it done at the position and Bruschi is hurt, though he hopefully will be ready for the start of the season. That leaves the Pats pretty thin at inside linebacker, so yeah, The Pats are trying to do something to help improve the team. Wether it's a 'desperate' move or not, it's better than doing nothing.

I don't know if Seau is going to provide the answer that the Pats are looking for, but, if he doesn't, they're no worse than they were before.

At least they are trying to fix the problem, though the real answer is to inject some young blood into the team at the inside LB position. Unfortunately nobody is stepping up, at least not yet...

In Belichick We Trust

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Thursday, August 17, 2006

Pre-Season Game 2: Not the old Arizona Cardinals anymore...

The next Patriots pre-season game, vs. The Arizona Cardinals, should prove to be pretty interesting. In previous years, seeing the Cards on the schedule was usually a yawn inducing event, but no more.

The Cards are looking to compete with the rest of the NFL this year with Curt Warner at QB and Edgerrin James running the ball, not to mention Dennis Green coaching the team. This is not the old, pushover Cardinals team that the rest of NFL has become accustomed to.

I'm not saying I expect the Cardinals to go undefeated this season, but they should have a good, competitive team this year. This should be a good test for the Patriots in pre-season game two.

From a team perspective, I was actually disappointed to hear that The Cardinals rookie QB Matt Leinart will probably play in this game. I'd much rather see the Pats face an experienced QB like Curt Warner in pre-season than a rookie who is just getting his feet wet in training camp.

Forget about the novelty of seeing Leinart in his first NFL, albeit pre-season, game. Pre-season is about preparation, and which QB is going to give the Pats a better challenge to help them get ready for the season, Warner or Leinart? Exactly...

Or, the Cards could always put in our old friend, former Patriots backup QB Rohan Davey, who is now a backup QB for Arizona. Don't be surprised to see him out there along with former Michigan QB John Navarre as well. Usually in pre-season game 2, everybody plays, then the team goes out for pizza afterwards.

On a side note, I used to work with a guy who actually wanted to see the Pats play Rohan over Tom Brady. Phhht. I still can't believe that one. I used to rag on this guy to no end, but wanting to see Rohan Davey in a game over Tom Brady? He deserved everything he got.

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Saturday, August 12, 2006

Pats / Falcons thoughts...

Just a few quick thoughts on the Pats / Falcons game, which the Pats lost in the closing seconds, 26-23. Yeah so the Pats lost. No biggie. The scores in these games mean nothing and do we really want to see the first pre-season game go into over-time? Ah, no. I think not. The most important outcome of this game: no injuries. Thank you.

I was so excited to get out of work yesterday afternoon and listen to some pre-game talk on the radio as I drove home. That is, until the pre-game hosts were introduced. Unfortunately Ron Borges is still a part of the Pats pre-game radio show and he did his best to take the fun out of the whole fucking thing.

I can't stand Borges and his hatred of Bill Belichick and the Patriots organization was on full display. His distain for the men that brought 3 Superbowls to New England practically dripped from every one of his statements during the show. I honestly don't know what they're thinking by having him as part of the Pats pre-game show.

As for the game itself, I missed a lot of the 1st quarter of the game. My kids were putting up a little bedtime battle, so I could not sit and watch the start of the game, but here are some totally worthless thoughts on what stuck out at me with the game overall.

Running Backs:
The running game looked sharp, with Dillion, Maroney and Faulk all showing signs of what will hopefully be a very effective ground game. Cobb, (or was it Cobbs? There were so many guys named Cobb(s) in this game I lost track) looked good in the 2nd half. I thought he looked better than Heath Evans. The screens were effective and the blocking looked good to me, (and let me just state once again that when I say, 'looked good to me', I realize that means absolutely nothing.)

Passing game:
Not much to say about the passing game. It was pretty much all about Matt Cassell getting lots of reps. I thought he looked ok. No issues, couple bad throws but, eh, it's pre-season and he's the backup..

I was a little disappointed about the play of the linebackers. Poor tackling. Lots of missed tackles. Poor coverage in the passing game as well. Linebacker is a position that is a bit of a worry right now, but that's what these games are for, to expose weaknesses early so they can be fixed.

It was kind of hard to get a gauge on the kicking game. The rookie Gostkowski's kickoffs looked good. He's obviously got a big leg. It's still up in the air as far as who has the edge here, Gostkowski or Martin Gramatica.

It was nice to see some Patriots football again and to hear Gil Santos and Gino Cappilletti calling the game. I missed all those guys. I missed football.

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Friday, August 11, 2006

As promised, a few pics from Pats training camp...

Ok, I know I'm really late in putting these up since they are from the first day of Patriots Training Camp and here we are with the 1st pre-season game tonight.

It's not my fault. There was an earthquake. A terrible flood. Locusts. IT WASN'T MY FAULT, I SWEAR TO GOD...

Ok. Here's the pics. There are only a few of them because most of the ones I took all look the same, long distance shots of the field, but I thought these were pretty interesting because you could actually see some stuff going on.


First, here is a shot of the front of my fridge. Thought you might find it interesting.

Yes, today I feel... like a champion!


Here's a shot of the practice fields. You can see there are 2 fields, defense on the left, offense on the right. There were some kicking drills going on on the left hand field as well. The stands are to the right and all across the front. Behind the stands are concessions and other fun things.


Brady airs it out to Reche Caldwell. (This pic came out good I think.)


Tedy and Mike take a little break between drills.


This one is a little hard to tell what's going on but this is a blocking drill.

Well there's the pics from camp. I'm not a pro photog, with a telephoto lens, but I still think they're pretty cool. Hope you like them and it made your Friday a little more fun.

In Belichick We Trust


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Monday, August 07, 2006

"He's 33 years old. He'll never play again"

"...That's all the motivation I need." ~ Rodney Harrison

Told you he'd be back. I never doubted it. Not for a second. But I will admit, Harrison surprised even me when I saw the news that he had been taken off of the Pats physically unable to perform (PUP) list today. I knew he'd be back but I did not think it would be this soon. All I can say is, 'Awesome'.

As I have said before, Harrison is the balls. He is one of my favorite players and it's great to see him back on the field. Nice job Rodney. Nice job.

In other good Patriots news, Randall Gay, Dan Koppen, Richard Seymour and Johnathan Sullivan were also removed from the PUP list today. Gay, Koppen and Seymour's return will provide a nice emotional boost to the team this week as we head into the 1st preseason game of the year vs Atlanta this Friday.

Hell, it's even good to see Sullivan out there and starting to get his reps in. Sullivan, who since he was acquired via trade from The Saints, has done nothing but make Pats fans wonder if he's going to do something besides be a fuck-up, is a former 1st round pick and could provide some nice depth at DL if he can just get his act together. Now that Sully's finally on the field, maybe Coach Belichick and his staff, along with veterans like Seymour, can polish some shine back onto that former 1st round draft pick status.

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Friday, August 04, 2006

Pats '06 schedule for iCal, Fixation on AL East standings worsens...

Let me get this out of the way first:

If you're looking for a good place to grab The Pats '06-07 schedule for Apple iCal, check out the ones that are in Google Calendar. Just do a search for 'Patriots' and a bunch of them will come up. There are several good ones in there that you can subscribe to right from iCal. Go Pats!

Next: My fixation on the AL East Standings:

My fixation has now officially switched over to the AL Wildcard Standings. Yes, I know the Sox are only 1 game back in the East, and they could easily return to the top spot, especially considering some of the teams we'll be facing over the next few weeks, but then again, if they can't take 2 out of 3 from Cleveland...

I don't want to sound like I am pushing the panic button, even though it looks like I am. Ok. Fuck it. I am. Sort of... Maybe I'm pushing the 'really nervous' button...

Hey, I'm allowed to be irrational sometimes. I am a Red Sox fan after all.

I'm not giving up on winning the Division but the bottom line is, all I really care about is making the playoffs [Insert Jim Mora rant: PLAYOFFS??] and the Wildcard represents the minimum that the Sox have to achieve in order to get in. Am I lowering my expectations? Well fuck. I guess I am. But so what, as long as we're in the playoffs at the end, who cares?

The Sox are looking at a golden chance to make some hay over the next few weeks with games against Tampa Bay, Kansas City and Baltimore coming up. Unfortunately, the team is pretty banged up at the moment so none of these series are necessarily locks for The Red Sox to win, but hopefully The Sox can still take advantage of some, so-called, 'weaker' teams before the 2nd half of August rolls around and the schedule becomes a lot more difficult.

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New NFL rules, referees got style

Have you seen the new uniforms for NFL referees? So stylish. Phht. Sometimes the NFL is a little ridiculous with this stuff. Whatev.

Speaking of changes I don't like, what's with this new rule change regarding instant replay? Instant replay can now be used to determine if a player is down by contact. Coach Belichick talked about it earlier this week:

“You can’t really play to the whistle any more. You have to play to the ball, because the whistle really might not be the end of the play. I think in this particular rule, we’re kind of going into an area that we haven’t gone into. The old adage of play to the whistle might not be good enough any more..."

That does not sound good to me, but every team will have to deal with it this season. That's the NFL, always tinkering.

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Thursday, August 03, 2006

MSM Patriots coverage: You guys need to relax

There is a report in the Boston Herald that Tedy Bruschi may or may not have broken his wrist. It could be a break, it could be a sprain. Why wait to find out when you can just jump to conclusions right?

I'm waiting for somebody in the press to ask Coach Belichick, 'Is it possible to break your wrist and then not have it be broken?'

The Herald actually has a poll on their site asking, 'How will the team's playoff chances be affected if Bruschi is lost to injury?' Don't you think that's a little ridiculous? Especially at this point in time, since The Pats have not even played a pre-season game yet?

I know this might sound crazy, but if Bruschi is hurt, how about waiting to find out what is actually wrong with him before you try and predict how it will affect the Patriots playoff chances 6 months from now. Come on. Get a grip you guys.

The Boston press needs to relax a little in regards to the day to day events going on at Patriots Training Camp. There has been an over-the-top reaction to pretty much every single little thing that has happened during The Pats training camp so far, from who's on or off the practice field from one session to the next, to Deion Branch's hold out, to Tom Brady's recent comments about said holdout in Sports Illustrated.

In fairness, I should point out that not everything coming out of the press these days regarding The Patriots is a total over-reaction. I am not a big fan of The Boston Globe, but recently I started reading Mike Reiss' Patriots Blog, Reiss's Pieces, and it has been a great way to get 'just the facts' on the day to day activities at Patriots Training Camp.

In Belichick We Trust

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Tuesday, August 01, 2006

Patriots Training Camp is cool

So what's up gang? I took this past Friday and Monday off from work and had a nice long weekend. I needed a break from the day to day grind and I wanted to get some July-time in before it disappeared 'till next year.

Maybe you noticed I took a break from the site as well. Like I said, I wanted to get some time baking in the summer weather before it's gone for the year. It will be cold and dark around here soon enough and there will be plenty of time to sit in front of a computer screen then.

In the meantime, last Friday was Day One of The New England Patriots training camp and I was in attendance, along with the rest of the family. I packed the Wife and Kids into the mini-van and trucked them down to Foxboro MA to take in some real, live, Pats Practice.

Now I can say that I saw the Pats play football this year. It was not in a game and it didn't count for anything, but I got to see live Patriots football.

The Patriots Training Camp is a lot of fun. If you are a Pats fan and have some time off while Camp is in session, I would say that you should definitely head to Foxboro and check it out. Unlike some teams (The Redskins,) The Patriots don't charge a dime for you to come and watch them practice. Parking is free and Camp attendance is free too. There are bleachers setup around the fields to watch the practices and there is plenty to see and do. There are full concessions set up behind the bleachers as well. I gotta say, it's pretty cool.

I had two, 4 year old kids with me and they were not bored, so that right there should tell you something. Unfortunately, we did not get there in time for the Punt, Kick and Pass games that were set up for kids, but my kids still had a good time anyway.

We sat on the grassy hill on the back-side of the practice fields. There are two fields set up parallel to each other, one for the offense, one for the defense. We were near the field where the offense was practicing. The running backs were on the back-side of the field and the QB's and receivers were on the front-side, practicing the passing game right in front of us.

That was a great show. We got to see plenty of Tom Brady and Matt Cassel passes to various receivers such as Troy Brown and Kevin Faulk.

Later in the practice there were some one on one passing drills with the CB's and Safeties coming over to provide a little coverage on the receivers and there were some defensive line vs. offensive line drills as well. It was very cool to watch.

I wish I had some really definitive descriptions of the day to pass on but really I just sat on the grass, enjoyed the sun and tried to take it all in. I spent some time watching some defense and punt drills that were taking place on the other fields, but for the most part, I paid most of my attention to the passing drill action taking place on the field in front of me.

It was really cool to hear Brady barking out plays in the huddle as well as seeing Coach Belichick addressing the team. I could not make out what he was saying, but his mono-tone voice was very recognizable. Tedy Bruschi and Mike Vrabel were hanging out between plays for a short time near our part of the field and that was cool to see too.

During the practice the players are all business. For the most part they ignore the presence of the fans and are focused on their jobs. The only exception might be an occasional smile from a receiver if they get a round of applause on a good catch, but that's about it.

I did not hang around to the very end for autographs. Once practice broke up, the players were just kind of milling around on the field and getting together in small groups. People were lined up at the ropes along the field for autographs but the players did not seem to be in any rush to come over. We waited a short time but when it became obvious the players would not be sauntering over to the ropes any time soon, we decided it was time to head out.

I am not a huge autograph collector so I was not really disappointed. I would have rather have gotten a few close-up pics of some players but it was not a big deal. We had kept the kids out in the hot sun for quite a long time and we decided it was time to head home.

We made a quick stop in the Pats Pro-Shop where there was a leather bound Patriots recliner, with cup holders. Ohhh....

I told my Wife about it, but she just rolled her eyes. 'Forget it,' she said.

I took quite a few pics while I was at camp and I will try and put a few up tomorrow. Most of them are not that great, they are just long distance views of the practice fields and stuff, but I will put a few up anyway so you can get some idea what the day was like. Look for that tomorrow or the next day at the latest.

It's hard to believe, but the Pats 1st pre-season game is only a week and a half away.

In Belichick We Trust

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Thursday, July 27, 2006

PUP Me...

Camp has not even started and the Pats have 10 guys on the Physically Unable to Perform (PUP) list. THE HELL??

On the List:
WR Bam Childress, CB Randall Gay, S Rodney Harrison, WR Chad Jackson, T Nick Kaczur, C Dan Koppen, RB Patrick Pass, LS Lonie Paxton, DL Richard Seymour and DL Johnathan Sullivan.

How the hell can all these guys be hurt?? I mean, Harrison, yeah I know, he's still recouping from his injury, but come on!! How the fuck can Chad Jackson be hurt already? Richard Seymour? What the hell happened to him that he's on the PUP list?

I am at a loss.

Oh and LB Chad Brown is back on the team. Whoop.

Go Pats

In Belichick We Trust

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Shout out to Lushy, YO! Pats camp tomorrow! YO!

What's up 'yall. I know. Folks from Massachusetts are not supposed to say, 'yall, but hey I live out in the sticks, well, the Massachusetts sticks... Whatever that is. For what it's worth, there are 3 dairy / beef / buffalo farms within 3 miles of my house. Anyway..

I wanted to send out a quick thanks to Lushy over at Such a Pretty Face for sharing that cool NFL opening day countdown that's over there in my sidebar with me. Thanks Lushy!

I am now officially off for the weekend. I'm taking Friday and Monday off to enjoy some hot July weather before it's gone.

Tomorrow I'm taking the fam down to Foxboro to take in some real live foosball. Well, real live foosball practice that is. My kids are all excited to go down and see Patriots Training Camp: Day 1. They've already got their Tom Brady jerseys all laid out and ready to go for tomorrow. I think this is going to be fun. I'm looking forward to it.

I'm hoping to get some good pics while I'm at the Pats Training Camp and maybe I can get an autograph or two, or maybe I can make eye-contact with Coach Belichick. Hey you never know. Anything can happen.

I was going to bring my whistle and bull-horn with me too. I was thinking maybe I could help out the coaches, you know, yelling at the players through my bull-horn and blowing my whistle.


But, then I did some thinking and decided that might not go over well...

That's tomorrow. I'll tell you all about it later.

Earlier this evening I made my Wife a Pina Colata. I had never made one before but I followed the directions and I thought it came out ok, but when I gave it too her she kind of smiled weakly at me and said, 'um. that's good.'

'What's wrong with it?'

'Nothing. It's good.'

'No it's not. When I make you a good drink you're all excited and, "MMMMMM THATS GOOOOD!"'


I took it back and put more rum in it. Cruzan rum. From the Virgin Islands. The greatest place on Earth. But more rum didn't fix it. So I tried more pineapple and more cocoa-nut milk. Still no go. Then my Wife took the pineapple and looked at the can. Expiration: 2004. Maybe that's it.

'Gimme that. I'll drink it. You want a Mango Margarita?'


That's more like it.

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Branch ad-nauseum, Sox lose, Yanks win...

Expect to hear daily reports on Deion Branch's holdout as the press does everything in it's power to whip Patriots fans into a frenzy about the situation.

Link: - N.E. Patriots: Agent: Branch wants fair treatment.

I gotta admit, Deion not being at camp does bug me. The Patriots internal rule of not discussing pretty much anything at all with anybody outside of the organization can be a double edged sword sometimes.

There's no denying the Patriots' information clampdown policy is a good thing for the team, but with situations like Deion's hold out and Maroney's contract, I can't help but wonder what's going on. Are the two sides talking? Are they close to making a deal? Are they not talking at all? What's going on? We'll never know. That's just the way it is with The Patriots.

After taking the first two games against the A's, The Sox lost yesterday's series finale.

I have not watched any of the last few West Coast games. 10 PM is just too late for me to start watching a ball game, so every morning for the last few days, I'd wake up and check the scores.

I'd see the Sox had won, 'YES!' Then I'd see the MFY had also won, 'DAMMIT!'

Last night I actually watched the end of the Texas / MFY game to see if the Yankees would lose.

My wife was flabbergasted. 'This isn't even the Red Sox. Why are we watching this?'

'The Sox lost today so I want to see if the Yankees will lose. COME ON TEXAS!'

'Well I'm not watching this. This is ridiculous,' she said.

Of course, the Yankees did not lose as I had hoped they would. Texas had them on the ropes in the late innings but could not close the deal and the Yanks wound up gaining ground on The Sox in the standings.

The Sox just can't seem to put any distance between themselves and the Yankees, but, that's the way it always is I guess.

Even though I keep telling myself not to, it seems I've become fixated on the AL East standings. That is not good. I have a hard time letting go once I've become fixated on something. Dammit.

Wednesday, July 26, 2006

Branch plans no-show for Camp

Looks like Deion Branch is going to crank this little contract dispute he's been having with the Pats up a notch. He plans to miss the start of Patriots training camp, and will not be joining the team until the contract issue is resolved.

As a fan, if there's one thing thing I don't like, about sports in general, not just The Patriots, it's reading about squabbles over contracts and money.

Branch is going to try and play a little hard-ball with The Pats. Fine (pun intended). The Patriots don't generally cave in to this kind of tactic, but Branch does have the team at a bit of a disadvantage here. The Patriots don't have an especially potent group of receivers at the moment. Yes, they have rookie Chad Jackson, but to me, he does not count as a known quantity yet. Jackson has shown there is a lot of potential there, but he has yet to play a down of actual NFL football. Bethel Johnson had a lot of potential too...

The bottom line is, the Pats are thin at receiver and are going to need Branch to play this year. The team could take the stubborn route and continue on without him, and I would not put it past them to do so, but hopefully this contract issue will get worked out quickly, a-la Richard Seymour's previous situation. I'm sure that Branch is thinking the exact same thing, 'Hey it worked for Big Sey'.

Maybe for now, The Pats will take the same approach with Branch that they did with Seymour. Throw him a bone to make him happy and get him to Camp, then work out a long term deal afterwords.

Either way, training camp is going to start on Friday, with or without Branch's presence, and with Deion holding out and rookie running back Laurence Maroney as of yet unsigned, this will open the door for other players to get some reps. I'm sure Corey Dillon will not be upset if he does not have to share time with Maroney for the first few days of camp.

Until Branch gets his new contract, I expect to hear a lot of, "I can only comment on the guys that are here," quotes from Coach Belichick, but I think both sides know that the team is better with Branch on the field, not sitting at home paying fines and getting pissed off.

Let's hope this contract talk ends quickly and we can get back to talking about what's happening on the field, not off it.

In Belichick We Trust

Monday, July 24, 2006

Great Googily-Moogily. Law signs with K.C...

Ty Law and the K.C. Chefs, I mean, Chiefs, made the news official today after Law passed a physical for the team. He signed a 5 year, 30 million dollar contract with K.C. Of course, at age 32, it will remain to be seen if he will actually collect on all 5 years worth of that contract.

Personally, I would have liked to have seen Ty Law back in a Patriots uniform this year, so I will admit to being disappointed by the news that he had signed with K.C., but I was not under the delusion that he would come back to The Patriots for the same sentimental reasons that I wanted him back, to take ownership of several team records and to finish out his career with The Pats. I knew from the start of free-agency that it would be the team that offered Law the largest amount of dollars that would acquire his services.

I'm sure Ty will do very well out in K.C. with their new Head Coach, Herm Edwards, and with Law playing alongside a quality cornerback in Patrick Surtain, I'm sure the K.C. defense will be much more formidable this year than it has been in years past.

On paper right now, K.C. has a pretty good looking team.

Thankfully in the NFL, the games are played on grass, not paper.

Meanwhile, my team, (yes, that's right, it's MINE,) The Patriots, are heading into Training Camp this week. Camp starts this Friday and the last time I checked, The Pats have 3 draft picks remaining to be signed. No worries. History has shown the distain that Coach Belichick holds for rookies who show up late to camp due to contract issues. I'll be surprised if the last three players, including 1st rounder Laurence Maroney, are not signed by the time camp starts on Friday.

While we're on the subject of wether some people (Deion Branch, cough! cough!) will showing up to camp on time or not, I noticed this tidbit today. It seems the NFL has increased the maximum daily fine for players who are under contract and fail to report to camp. As stated in the article, the amount of the fine has nearly tripled, going from 5,000 to 14,000 dollars a day.

Maybe some players (Deion Branch, couggh! Sorry! Something in my throat,) will be thinking twice about holding out this year. Hopefully Branch will be at Camp and there won't be any problems, but what I'd really like to see is the whole issue with Branch's contract situation put to rest once and for all.

I can tell you one person who won't be holding out at the start of the Pats Training Camp this Friday, ME!

I'm planning on heading down to Foxboro for the afternoon camp session on Friday and I'm going to bring my kids with me. Yes, I am going to shamefully use my children as bait to attract players and get their autographs and pictures.

Lets face it, no football player can resist a cute baby all decked out in a Patriots outfit, spit-up or no spit-up.

Friday, July 21, 2006

West coast baby. Pretty Cool Huh?

Anybody out there every had Reiner beer? Awesome stuff. Ok. It's the West Coast equivalent of Budwieser. But still. I don't care. I love it. Is it still around? I can't seem to find any references to it in google. What's up with that?

10 PM

Wife: What, is the game just staring now?

Me: Yeah, they're playing in Seattle.

Wife: Well I'm not staying up for this.

Me: I probably won't either...

And yet, here I am, still watching the game, wondering if I should grab another beer out of the fridge. At 11 PM.

Tek just hit a home run to make it 4-0, Sox. That is good because the AA starter on the mound for The Sox will need all the help he can get tonight.

So, while you're here, what's goin' on? Happy Reward Friday.

How about Shea Hillenbrand and his little tirade up in Toronto? Remember when he was considered 'un-tradeable' by many in Red Sox Nation? Till all of a sudden he got traded for pitcher Bun Yun Kim, who did nothing but irritate me... and Hillenbrand called Theo 'A Fag' on the way out of Boston. Hmm. I wonder what Shea called the guys up in Toronto? Dumb-Ass.

I was watching 'NFL Tonight' on ESPN earlier this evening and they did a feature on Tedy Bruschi and the day he spent with a young boy from the 'Make a Wish' foundation who had lived through a heart condition very similar to Tedy's.

Tedy had him down to Foxboro and gave him the grand tour of Gillette Stadium, with a locker all decked out for him, uniform, pads, helmet, a game ball, the Lombardi Trophy.. everything. Bruschi had this young boy run out onto the field through the big football helmet, run down the field for a touchdown, dude, he gave this little kid the works, the fucking works.

I gotta say, Tedy Bruschi made me cry. Watching how happy he made that little kid with all the stuff he did for him, I was all misty and choked up. Somebody punch me in the arm, quick.

Tedy Bruschi is the best. '54'

Thursday, July 13, 2006

I know style...

Quick back-story:

We have an old couch that is going to go in the basement. There is nothing wrong with it, other than the fact that, according to my Wife, it's the wrong color.

Me: "What's wrong with it? It looks fine to me."

Wife, rolling eyes: "IT DOESN'T MATCH!"

Me: "Doesn't match what? Everything down here is white. How can it not match?"

Wife: "It doesn't match because it's going to be up against a big green wall!"

Me: "Phht. Looks fine to me."

Wife: Rolls eyes.

There you have it. That's the back-story.

So my Wife has been on a quest to find a slip-cover for the couch that will match the Green Monster that I've painted in my basement. For you men out there, I know there's a lot of you bachelor-types who might not know this, but a slip cover is a fancy cover that fits on the couch and makes it look like it's got different upholstery. It's kind of different from the old sheet you might have used, or maybe are using right now... Women like this stuff. I don't know why. It's along the same lines as decorative pillows.

Anyway, The Wife is on a quest for a slip cover. Tonight we were sitting in the living room. I was watching the Sox / A's game, which is still in doubt as I write this, with the score tied 3-3, and my Wife was searching on the internets for slip-covers.

I glanced over at some of the pictures of the various styles she was looking at and asked, "Do they have any Patriots slip covers?"


"You didn't even look!"

"I don't need to look. I just know they don't have any."

"Gimme that thing," I said, grabbing the lap-top.

I fired up google and did a couple quick searches. Sadly, I had to concede to her. I was not able to find any cool Patriots slip-covers.


Look what I did find!


While I was searching for some Pats slip-covers, my Wife had gotten up to get herself a drink of water. She came back and asked in a smirky tone, 'Well, did you find any Patriots slip-covers?'

'Nope. Better!' I said, showing her the Patriots couch.

She was aghast.

'We need to get this,' I said. 'THAT THING IS AWESOME!!'

'We can't afford it.'

'Look! There's even a matching recliner!'

'We can't afford it.'

'How about as an anniversary present for you?'

'Oh, yeah. That's real romantic. Just what I want, a Patriots couch.'

I guess some women just don't know style + romance when they see it.

Friday, June 30, 2006

NFL Owner Power Rankings: Kraft #1...

Sports Illustrated recently put out an article that ranked the NFL's team owners.

I found it very interesting that The Patriots owner, Robert Kraft, was ranked as the #1 team owner in the league. Not that I disagree with their assessment, though I am admittedly biased.

The reason I find it interesting is due to the fact that Kraft was once perceived, by the media at least, as a meddlesome owner, a tinkerer who interfered with the Football Operations of the team, who generally got in the way and stuck his nose where it didn't belong.

Looks like that perception in the media is long gone now... I should also mention that that, even though the owner of my team happens to be listed as #1, these Owner Power Rankings, compiled by these so called 'media experts' are about as useful as the Team Power Rankings that are done by the same bunch during the season.

It's cool that Kraft is ranked as #1, but in the end the whole Power Ranking thing is all pretty meaningless. Interesting, but meaningless.

(Did I mention that The Pats Training Camp starts in 4 weeks, on July 28th?)

Thursday, June 29, 2006

Hey Sully, this ain't how we roll in N.E...

When the Pats traded Bethel Johnson to The N.O. Saints in return for for Johnathan Sullivan, I figured it was a pretty good trade. Johnson had a few shining moments here and there as a Patriot, but as a former second round pick with blazing speed, he never lived up to his potential and seemed to spend a lot of time in Coach B's doghouse.

Sullivan, a D-Lineman originally taken in the 1st round by the Saints, was pretty much the same type of player. He seemed to have a lot of potential when he was drafted, but he never lived up to it. His work ethic had been described as 'dubious' and he never really contributed to the Saints D.

The Pats gave Johnson several seasons to pull it together in New England but it never happened, and it did not look like it was going to happen any time soon, so it seemed like it was a good idea for the Pats to swap Johnson for a D-Lineman.

Even if he had not lived up to his 1st round pedigree so far, I felt that if there was anybody in the league that could work with Sullivan to get him on the right track, it was Belichick and The Pats. I figured at the very least he would provide some depth on the D-Line, as opposed to Johnson, who, at times, was not even dressing for games.

Then I read this story about Sullivan getting arrested on drug and driving charges. Although a fairly minor offense, this is not the Patriot way and this kind of crap won't be tolerated here in New England.

Hopefully Sullivan will quickly learn how things work with The Patriots and get his act together. Maybe a couple of the the veterans on the team, perhaps someone like Richard Seymour, can take Sullivan aside, give him a few noogies and knock some sense into him. Otherwise, I would not be surprised at all if at some point The Pats decide not to waste their time with Sullivan and just cut him loose entirely.

It would be nice if The Pats could get something out of this player, but if the headache is not going to be worth the return, why bother?

4 weeks till Training Camp by the way..


Wednesday, June 14, 2006

Patriots Mini-Camp rolls on...

With the Patriots Mini-Camp in session, all the football chatter has me a little giddy. I'm so psyched to see those guys on the field, even if it is only a 3 day camp. Not that I want to accelerate summer to get to football season or anything... I hope this summer is as long and drawn out as possible, but I do like seeing Football Related Activities taking place in Foxboro.

As expected, Deion Branch is sitting out the Mini-Camp in an attempt to force The Patriots hand on getting a new contract. No surprise there, but I hope this does not become a prolonged issue. As I said previously, Branch is a good receiver. He deserves to be paid, but he does not deserve to be paid as one of the best receivers in the league, because he's not at that level.

Tom over at Pats Pulpit sums it up best:

"Branch is "upper middle class" or maybe the "lower upper class." He's very good, but he's not quite great. You'd rather have him on the field than on the sideline, but you're not counting on him to make the decisive play, or draw defenders off the other receivers."

In other news, Rodney Harrison is not on the field, but he is running and apparently is mashing the crap out of golf balls. Those are all good signs that he is making progress. He will be on the field this season. Maybe not for the opener, but he'll be out there.

The Herald has some good Camp related articles today, so check those out for the round up...

GO PATS and try to stay calm. It is only Mini-Camp...

Monday, June 12, 2006

It's a Mini!

Pats mandatory Mini-Camp. Mandatory Patriots Mini-Post.

Tomorrow... For a football-starved Patriots Nation, this is the first chance to get a small taste of what lies ahead for The Patriots this season. We will finally get to see the 2006-07 Patriots, as they stand at the moment anyway, gathered in one place.

This may be only a short, mini-camp, but this is where the team will start to lay the foundation for the upcoming season. Here are a few things I'm interested in:

- Coaches: Belichick is still running the show, so no worries there, but there are now two new coordinators working both sides of the ball. I am hoping to hear some news about how the new coaching dynamic is playing out.

- Receivers: Deion Branch and his contract will get a lot of ink over the next few days, I'm sure. It sounds like he may be taking the Richard Seymour approach to getting a new deal. Hey, it worked for Richard... Branch deserves to be paid appropriately, but if he's looking for the Pats to break the bank, he may be disappointed. I have a feeling he is aware of this...

- Rookies: It is always exciting to see the new crop of rookies come out and play with the vets. I will be looking forward to hearing how they are meshing with the rest of the team.

- Defense: Tebucky's back along with a hopefully recuperated, Defensive Secondary. I'm hoping to hear some info on how Harrison is doing. I'm not expecting much news, this is The Pats after all, but hopefully we will hear some stories about elusive glimpses of Harrison running around and intimidating the fuck out of anybody that ventures near his area of the field.

- Brady: Word is going around that Tom Brady is more focused than ever after what happened in the Playoff game in Denver last season... I've got goose-bumps...


Wednesday, May 24, 2006

Go pick a different number rook... Bush loses numbers game; back can't wear No. 5.

I don't know why this whole thing got under my skin so much, but for some reason this little, 'jersey number 5', drama that went on with Reggie Bush really bugged the shit out of me.

Maybe the reason I found this story so annoying was because of the fact that Bush has not fucking done anything in the NFL yet?  Bush had a great college career but he's in the NFL now, meaning what he did in college now means shit as far as I'm concerned.

Respect is something you have to earn in the bigs rookie, they don't just hand it out with your new jersey. Now go wash some jock-straps, and when you're done there's some veteran players over there who need you to pick up their shit and carry it out to the practice field...

Wednesday, May 17, 2006

Ty Law tease...

The last few days on NESN SportsDesk, the tease going into the 1st commercial break has sounded something like this: "...and coming up on SportsDesk, Ty Law visits the Pats! Will Law be making a happy return to The Pats?"

Translation: Now that you've gotten the Sox update, we're going to dangle this little carrot in front of you and hope you will hang around to watch the middle segment of the show...

Yes, Law has been into Foxboro for a physical, but that does not really mean anything. He's just shopping himself around, that's all. He's going to be visiting K.C. and a number of other teams as well.

It would be great to see Law back in a Pats uniform, but I don't see it happening. Ty has shown all along that he is more worried about feeding his family than owning any of the Pats' team records.

I think the current scenario with Ty Law is very similar to what went on with Keyshawn Johnson when he was a free agent. Belichick has a good relationship with Johnson and reportedly he has a good relationship with Ty Law as well, but as we saw when Keyshawn was available, having a good relationship with Belichick does not necessarily mean he's going to pay the big bucks that Ty will assuredly be looking for.

Law supposedly has a good relationship with Herm Edwards out in K.C. too, but I think the person that Law gets along with better than anyone else is Mr. Benjamin Franklin.

Like I said, it would be great to see Law back with The Pats, but Ty is going to sign with the team that pays him the most money, not the team who's head coach he has the best personal relationship with.

I wouldn't be getting that Ty Law jersey out of the closet yet...

In some unrelated NFL news, for some reason, this whole Reggie Bush jersey number story really bugs me. I don't know why, it just does.

Saturday, May 13, 2006

Preparing for [Ticket Master] battle...

In a few minutes I will be battling the the hordes on Ticket Master, in an attempt to get some Patriots tickets... The Target will be a Sept or October game if possible, but I'll take anything I can get.

Fingers crossed...

10:10 AM and Ticket Master is pissing me off so bad.. I've been giving my vocabulary of swear-words a good workout while I attempt in extreme frustration to get a ticket to any game... ANY FUCKING GAME!! WHAT THE FUCK TICKET MASTER YOU SUCK ASS!!

Update 2:
10:20 AM. Well I am sure the tickets are all gone by now but I am going to continue to try for another few min before I throw in the towel. Ticket Master makes you enter a security word to prevent automated programs from getting tickets. What a joke that is. The last one I had to enter was 'gouger'. 'How appropriate,' I thought...

Update 3, Final Update:
10:25 AM. In what I know in my brain is an exercise in futility, I'm making one last run down the list of games trying to get Pats tickets. 2 tickets, any price, somewhere in the stadium. You'd think that would not be so hard. Nothing available.

Instead of making you try to get tickets for individual games, Ticket Master should have a 'just give me a ticket to anything; any game, any price, any seat in the stadium' option.

The sick part of this whole masochistic, exceedingly frustrating process is that I logged into Ticket Master at exactly 10 AM on the dot and from the moment I started in my attempt to get a ticket, nothing was available. 10 seconds after 10 and nothing is available... HOW CAN THAT BE?? The tickets have only been on sale for 10 seconds and nothing is available??

I know. Tickets are long gone. But I gave it one last try. El-Zilcho. I quit.

Has anyone ever been successful in getting a ticket to a game through this process? I try every year. Why do I bother? ARG!!!

As my wife just aptly stated: 'It's ridiculous that normal people cannot get tickets to Patriots or Red Sox games.'

[Deep breath] Well that was fun.

On with the rest of my day. I've got a drop-ceiling to install...

One Last Update:
10:40 PM:
I just read Tom's post over at Pats Pulpit and he pretty much described the same experience I went through this morning, just with less swearing. It's a shame that real Pats fans can't get tickets to a game but I'm sure some corporate dick who does not even follow the game of football will get their choice of the best seats in the house this season.

It sucks.

Wait a min... I recall Belichick saying in his post-draft press conference that Scott Pioli was the man and to just give him a call if you wanted to get hooked up with tickets... Hmmmmm...

Monday, May 01, 2006

Pats draft thoughts...

I wish I could offer some in-depth insight on the players the Patriots have chosen in this year's draft, but I have never been a draftnik and I don't follow college football so I really know very little about the Pats draft choices. I'll start to learn more about the new guys on the team when rookie camp starts and when my Patriots Football Weekly shows up at my mailbox to fill me in on the details.

Even though I can't really speak about the players the Pats selected, I can tell you that I was not unhappy or surprised by any of the positions that The Pats tried to fill. When I heard they drafted a running back, my reaction was, 'cool, we need one of those'. The same thing goes for my reaction when they traded up for a receiver, took yet another tight end for the something-eth year in a row, took a fullback/tight-end (versatility my friends) and also a kicker. Wether it was done through the draft or through free-agency, these were all areas on the team that The Pats needed to take care of.

The remainder of the Pats picks provided depth in the O Line with a guy who's played every position on the line except for center and a 2nd O-Lineman that Charlie Weis compared to Joe Andruzzi (would Charlie steer Bill wrong?)

The Pats also added depth to their D Line with two extremely versatile players. The first of the linemen the Pats chose has played in multiple positions on the D-Line, while the second D lineman the Pats picked could actually wind up becoming a linebacker for The Pats.

The Pats also added another body to the crowd in the defensive backfield. As I'm sure Troy Brown would say, the more the merrier.

My bottom line reaction to all of this basically was, 'sounds good to me'. The Pats are not going to fill every hole on the team through the draft, and as Belichick said himself, "We still have some work in free agency to fill out the roster so we can have as strong a team as we can heading into training camp." 

It's all just pieces of the puzzle my friends. I think the Pats did a good job of taking care of a lot of the team's needs with this year's draft and like Bill said, there's more work to be done before camp starts.

In Belichick We Trust

Tuesday, April 25, 2006

Odd and ends...

Quick note to self: Don't work on website posts after 11 PM. You are prone to making lots of grammatical errors.

Self replies: Thank you, you tool.

If you have not checked out The New England Patriots Podcasts yet, you have been missing out on some great shows. The guys over at Patriots Football Weekly have been doing two pre-draft Podcast shows a week and they have been very informative. They are definitely worth checking out.

Fred Kirsh, if you want to thank me for the PFW Podcast plugs, a complimentary renewal to my PFW subscription would be nice. Hint!

Google Calendar: Did you know you can add the Red Sox and Patriots schedule to Google calendar by just doing a quick search in public calendars? Well you can. And it's awesome.

Despite the Pats glaring need at wide receiver this year, this very informative article over at The Cold Hard Football Facts explains why it would probably not be in the Patriots' best interest to pick a receiver in the 1st round of the NFL draft.

Also, I gotta say, this Draught Party CHFF is planning at The Cask this weekend sounds like it will be a blast. I am highly considering sneaking out of the house and making an appearance... We'll see.

Monday, April 24, 2006

Some Pats pre-draft thoughts...

The NFL draft is coming up this weekend and the Pats are loaded with picks, with multiple draft picks in the 3rd (2), 4th (2) and 6th (3) rounds.

Despite the alarming departures of some popular and, more importantly, very productive free agents earlier in the year, if you take a look at the Pats overall roster, things are not in that bad a shape right now.

O-Line / D-Line: The Pats are solid in the trenches. In the O-Line group you've got Neal, Koppen, Mankins, Light and Hochstein, and on the D-Line you've got Seymour, Wilfork, Warren and Green.

Contract issues aside (I believe Koppen will be due some bucks soon,) in these two areas, the Pats are pretty much set. I'm guessing the Pats will mainly look to add depth in these positions just in case of injuries.

Linebacker: Even though the Pats lost Willie McGinist, they are still in decent shape at Linebacker, with a group that includes Bruschi, Colvin and Vrabel. The problem is that after these guys things get a little thin, with Banta-Cain and Beisel following up.

This is an area on the team that could definitely use an injection of youth. The Pats need to start bringing in some new guys here to serve as the linebacker core of the future.

Quarterback: It goes without saying we are set here. The Pats need to bring in a veteran to compete with Cassell for the #3 job. 

Tight Ends: The Pats like to run a lot of two tight end sets and right now they only have two players at that position, Daniel Graham and Ben Watson, both of whom are known to hit the injury list at least once a season. The Pats were solid at #3 with Fauria, but now that he is gone to The Kingdom of Dan down in Washington, The Pats will need to acquire a 3rd tight-end.

Corner / Safety: If there's one area the Pats have depth, it's in the D-Backfield. The problem is, the last few years, they've needed all of that depth and then some to make it through the season. The Pats have got corner-backs and safeties up the ass but this is still an area the Pats will continually look to improve. They need to find that 'shut-down' corner of the future as well as well as a player they can groom to eventually take over the reins at strong safety.

The most glaring need on the Pats roster right now is at wide receiver. The Pats have Deion Branch, Troy Brown and Reche Caldwell as their number one, two and three receivers right now. Bam Childress and Bethel Johnson are also in the mix, along with a few other players that you probably would not recognize if they ran into you on the street.

That mix does not inspire a lot of confidence in me right now. Tom Brady is the focal point of the Pats offense and that means he's got to have somebody to throw the ball to. Branch is a good number one, but he will be double teamed like crazy if the Pats do not get a bona-fide #2 receiver to line up with him. I'm sure Troy Brown will be as reliable as ever and can always be counted on to make plays, but I am not sure he is a #2 receiver at this point. He is (and really always has been) more of a #3, slot-man. The rest of the guys on the list are relatively unknowns at this point. Aside from the fact that he was on Angela's fantasy team, (which actually inspires confidence in me that he's probably a decent player,) I know very little about Caldwell, the free agent who was brought in from San Diego.

I will be shocked if The Pats do not draft a wide-receiver this year. Frankly, I don't see how they can't.

Running back: The Pats have a good group of running backs but age and injuries could decimate this area of the team in the blink of an eye. The Patriots need to add some depth here. If Dillon is not able to perform again this year, The Pats have no-one that can step in to replace him right now.

Patrick Pass and Heath Evans did ok filling in last year, but the Pats need to find a real back up running back for Corey Dillon. I would love to see them find one of those diamond in the rough, Curtis Martin type picks in this year's draft, a running back who can come in and be part of a new foundation at this position, which has never truly been solid since the departure of Martin. (By the way, I predict Curtis will never win, or even play in a Super Bowl thanks to his good buddy Bill Parcells and his 'poison pill' contract... How's that workin' out for ya Curtis?)

So to sum up, yes, the Pats certainly have some holes to fill, but this is not what I would consider a 're-build' year, it is more of a re-tool and tweak year. With the bounty of draft picks The Pats have at their disposal, I'm sure a lot of those holes will be getting plugged up very soon.

IN BILL (and Scott) WE TRUST

Wednesday, April 12, 2006

The good news we've been waiting for: Seymour is LOCKED IN

You like Apples? How about these apples: Seymour, Pats agree to long-term contract extension.

Terms were not disclosed, but the article speculates that Seymour could retire in a Pats uniform. Fan-effin'-tastic!

This is great news for Patriot Nation. As we watched one big name after another leave the team at the beginning of free-agency, I had been hoping The Pats were behind the scenes at Foxboro working on a deal with Seymour. It's good to see that hopeful thought realized.

Maybe we will soon hear a similar story regarding Dion Branch's contract as well. Fingers are crossed.


Some thoughts on The Pats recent signings...

So the Pats were busy last week (for them anyway), signing four players. None of them are big name, break the bank type players, but all of them are solid and, with the obvious exception of Gramatica, will provide good depth in the secondary, an area that has continually been snake-bit with injuries for the past several years.

I expect all of these players will mainly be special teams contributors, but that should not be considered any kind of slight towards them. Anyone that's followed the Pats during Belichick's reign knows that Special Teams are not an area that is considered any less important than Offense or Defense. All three phases count in The Pats system.

The most recent signings were Tebucky Jones and Martin Gramatica. I've gotten the general impression that people are 'down' on these two signings and I don't really see why.

I'll talk about my thoughts on Gramatica first. I get the impression that people are somehow expecting the Patriots to just go out and replace Adam Vinatieri. Well, that can't be done, so I think bringing in Gramatica is a good move. Prior to his injury, he was a very good kicker with good distance and accuracy. He is supposedly fully recovered from his injury and now will get a shot with to resurrect his career with The Pats. That story sounds kind of familiar... Frankly I like Gramatica over Paul Edinger.

I expect The Pats will also bring in a rookie kicker to camp and let the two players battle it out for the position. Who knows, they could even bring in a player from NFL Europe to add to the compitition as well...

The other player signed recently, Tebucky Jones, has come under a lot of derisive talk as well. Why are people so down on Tebucky Jones? He is an exceptional special teams player and is a quality safety as well. He is a former starter for the Pats, who is familiar with their defense, and if we get bit by the injury bug again, Tebucky will provide The Pats with a very good backup at the safety position.

I am not trying to convince anybody that Tebucky is the perfect player, and I know all about his tendency to occasionally whiff on tackles, but I'm not expecting him to replace Rodney Harrison (who will be back this year). He is a special teams guy and a backup and I think he fits in well in his intended role. If we start losing players in the defensive backfield again, I'd rather see Tebucky back there than Artrell Hawkins or Gus Scott. I think Tebucky may still be carrying the stigma of the failed experiment playing at corner under Pete Carroll. When he moved over to his natural position at safety, he showed an immediate improvement. He was a very good player when he was with the Saints as well. Stop dissing Tebucky.

Earlier in the week The Pats had signed Mel Mitchell. I don't have a huge amount to say about this signing that's not already been talked about in the papers and the article I linked to. He's a good special teams guy and provides depth in the secondary.

Finally, Eric Warfield, from K.C., another decent corner, not a guy that makes you jump up and down in excitement over the signing, but a good addition that ads depth in the secondary where we need it.

The Pats also kept one of their own, signing cornerback Randall Gay today. Hopefully he (along with everyone else back there) can stay healthy this year.

With all the guys The Pats have brought in to provide depth in the secondary, I'm hoping this will be the year we will see Troy Brown spend the entire season focusing on offense.

I will admit to being pretty freaked out several weeks ago after seeing Adam and Willie leave The Pats for other teams, but I have settled down at this point. The draft is only a few weeks away and the Patriots are loaded with picks. That is the area where the Pats have always tried to build the team and I am looking forward to seeing who The Pats will get in the draft this year. I'm sure the free agent signings are not done either.

There's still a long way to go between now and the opening game in Sept.


Sunday, April 09, 2006

Pats schedule thoughts...

After the brutality of last year's Patriots schedule, this year's schedule is much more reasonable. There is a long way to go and a lot of stuff that will happen between now and the start of the NFL season, but here are my worthless thoughts with a look at this seasons games anyway.

Sep 10 Buffalo 1:00pm - The Pats will be opening up the season at home against the Bills. It's always good to start at home with your own crowd behind you. The Bills are one of those teams where the record does not matter for the Pats. They are always tough.

Sep 17 @N.Y. Jets 4:15pm - The Jets are going to be starting in their first year with their new head coach, Eric Mangini, who, while he was a fine defensive coordinator (for all of one year), has zero head coaching experience. This will be an interesting game. Normally I would say the Pats roll in this one due to the coaching factor, but Eric has a little inside information that may throw a little twist into this one. I still see this one as a win for The Pats.

Sep 24 Denver 8:15pm - A home vengeance game against The Broncos on Sunday Night Football. Realizing it's way too early for predictions in a game like this, I'll pick the Pats, for the incredibly logical reason of, 'because'.

Oct 1 @Cincinnati 4:15pm - I know I've said this before and I will say it again: 4:00 games rock. Cincy is not a pushover team anymore. This one will depend on the health of Cincy's quarterback, Carson Palmer. This should be a fun game, either way.

Oct 8 Miami 1:00pm - Miami comes to New England in early October and the weather should be fantastic, unless it is rainy or something. Either way, there won't be any snow. I'm sure they Fish are very grateful.

Week 6 BYE - The bye week comes at a pretty good time. Almost right in the middle of the schedule. Nice.

Oct 22 @Buffalo 1:00pm - Just as Miami should be happy to be heading to N.E. in Oct, I am also happy to be heading to Buffalo in October. Buffalo is always a crazy place to play late in the year, with the snow and the wind. I'd rather head up there when the weather is decent.

Oct 30 @Minnesota 8:30pm - Dome team in dissarray. Nuff said.

Nov 5 Indianapolis 8:15pm - Indy comes to N.E. The NFL just wants to keep giving the Pats opportunities to beat up on Peyton Manning in prime time I guess. I think the 'Greatest QB in the History of Football' luster is finally gone from Manning after last season. It'll be interesting to see Adam's reception at the Razor with a horse-shoe on his helmet.

Nov 12 N.Y. Jets 1:00pm - Jets at home. With more than half a season behind Magini to 'settle in' as head coach, it will be interesting to see the difference in the Jets at this point in the season compared to our initial meeting in game 2.

Nov 19 @Green Bay 1:00pm - Has Brett Farve made his decision on wether to retire or not yet? Geez... Pats at Lambeau. This should be a fun game. And, once again, I can't help but notice that we will be playing a cold weather team in the fairly mild month of November. Fantastic.

Nov 26 Chicago 1:00pm - Chicago comes to Foxboro. This should be another fun game. The Pats are playing some cool teams that they have not seen in a long time this year. When was the last time Chicago was in Foxboro? I can't even remeber... I still want vengeance for SB XX.

Dec 3 Detroit 1:00pm - As we enter December, we head inside to a dome to play a, well, let's just be honest, a team that's not very good. Of course, there's always the 'Any Given Sunday' factor, but I think The Pats should win this one.

Dec 10 @Miami 1:00pm - December 10 and we're in Miami. This is more of a favor for Miami than The Pats, but I don't think you'll hear any loud complaining in Foxboro either. I think the AFC East will be a battle between The Pats and Miami this year, so this will be a key game for both teams.

Dec 17 Houston 1:00pm - A warm weather / dome team heads up to N.E. for a nice cold December game. Welcome to The RAZOR Houston.

Dec 24 @Jacksonville 1:00pm - And once again, we head south, this time for a rematch with Jax. This one will be tough. Jax will have revenge on their minds for last year's playoff loss and both teams will be making a playoff push at this point in the year.

Dec 31 @Tennessee 1:00pm - David Givens will be wearing the flaming thumb-tack on his head, but will we miss him at this point in the year or will we will be saying David who? We'll see. New Years Eve. Let's kick the New Year celebration off right with a Pats win. Sounds good.

Thursday, April 06, 2006

Pats 2006 schedule now available

The Pats Schedule is here! The Pats Schedule is here!! WOOO!!

There. I got all excited. Happy now NFL?

New England Patriots 2006 Team Schedule

Dissection to follow later...


Friday, March 24, 2006

Pats keep Troy Brown, Stephen Neal...

Good news. That Pats will keep Troy Brown, Football Player, and Right Guard, Stephen Neal.

I am very glad to see that Troy will be back this year. It would have been a shame if Troy's final play as a Patriot was his fumble in last year's playoff defeat to Denver. After 14 years, it's likely this could be his final season, (but you never know).

Troy needs 21 catches to overtake the great Stanley Morgan as the Patriots All-Time Leading Reciever. No problem, as long as he can focus on playing offense this year and not have to worry about filling in at corner.

I'm also glad to see Stephen Neal back. The former wrestler has developed into a very good offensive lineman. It's good to see that all the work the Pats put in to help Neal become a top performer will not go to the benefit of another team. Now Neal is locked in and is sticking with The Pats. Nice.


Because WEEI still sucks, Pats Football Weekly Podcast...

I was hoping to hear some Patriots news on my way home from work yesterday, so I tuned into Boston sports radio station, WEEI. I was quickly reminded of why I had abandoned that station some time ago. The 'conversation' pretty much consisted of the hosts and the phone callers trying to out-yell one another, and sounded something like this:






Thrown in there were some really clever sound effects too...

Later that evening, I was reading looking for some news and I learned that the 'Patriots Football Weekly In Progress' radio show is now being offered as a downloadable PodCast. (I'm not sure if there is a way to subscribe to it in iTunes...)


I have not listened to it yet. I'm going to check it out today on the ride in to work. I figure it's gotta be more informative than the 'conversation' that takes place on EEI..

You can subscribe to the Pats Football Weekly Podcast in iTunes, click here. (Now if I could just find a decent Red Sox PodCast.)

Bye bye, 'EEI...

Thursday, March 23, 2006

Patriot Nation breathes a sigh of relief... Vander-jackass a Cowboy

Are the Dallas Cowboys intentionally trying to create the ultimate team of misfit football players? Now that Vanderjerk has signed with Dallas, the Cowboys now feature a locker room full of some of the most disruptive personalities in the NFL.

They've got T.O., they've got Terry Glenn, they've got Vanderjerk and of course they've got the ring leader himself, Bill Parcells, who is taking orders from megalomaniac Jerry Jones. It's like the NFL version of the Legion of Doom. It's like watching a car wreck happening right before your eyes. You can see all the pieces of disaster aligning for the big crash and you can't peel your eyes away from it.

If you follow the NFL, you simply have to pay attention to Dallas now, just to see what kind of insanity is going to ensue down there. I can only imagine what that locker room will be like.

As a Pats fan however, all I can say is, 'whew'! The idea of seeing Mike Vander-jackass trotting onto the field at the Razor in a Pats uniform, literally made my stomach turn. Hopefully the Pats just sign Edinger now and be done with it.

In the meantime, you'll have to excuse me now, because I've got to go throw up.

Makes me sick...


Wednesday, March 22, 2006

Sick day...

Yes, I'm still feeling like I got a kick in the stomach today over the Adam Viantieri Colts signing, but I'm going to allow myself only one day to dwell on this whole 'Adam is a Colt' thing. What's done is done so I may as well get over it and move on. Today will be my Adam Vinatieri sick day and then that's it.

If it helps you feel better, you are more than welcome to vent your thoughts about this disaster in the comments area. Swearing is allowed, (in case you did not notice from my earlier tirade).

I am pissed off that this happened and even though I am, by my own admission, usually a blind follower of the Belichick / Pioli brain trust, even I am really wondering what the hell is going on down in Foxboro. [Anger swelling. Remain calm...]

Meanwhile, the Pats need a new kicker and let me just say, Vander-jackass is not an option. Absolutely not. Bill, Scott, don't even think about bringing that tool into Foxboro.

That apparently leaves Paul Edinger, who paid a visit to Foxboro yesterday, as the Pats only real option at this point. He's a cold weather kicker, he's got a young leg at age 28 and he has some experience kicking with the game on the line.

There's also a rumor going around that Miami's Olindo Mare may become available at some point. I'm sure the Pats radio guys, Gil Santos and Gino Cappiletti, would be happy if he were to join the Pats. They'd have a ball with his name every time he came in to kick. Mare is an accurate kicker who has killed the Pats plenty of times in the past with his leg, but he's also a warm weather guy and he's getting up there in age...

Oh by the way, buried at the bottom of the Edinger article I linked to above is the news that Tim Dwight is now a Jet and Stephen Neal is meeting with Miami.

Are the Pats trying to keep any of their free agents? WTF!!? Has anybody called Keyshawn Johnson or Sam Madison yet? Ok, I'm getting all freaked again... Arg.

Tuesday, March 21, 2006

Still in shock...

It's been several hours since I read the news on ESPN that Adam Vinatieri is now an Indianapolis Colt and I'm still in shock and a bit of denial, though I am now at least able to control my tourrettes syndrome-like reaction at the idea of Adam wearing a horseshoe on his helmet..

I keep checking ESPN and other sites for news that it's not true or that it was some kind of mistake... Nope. This is for real.

I am in complete and utter disbelief that The Pats could let something like this happen. The Patriots have oodles of salary cap room and could have easily made Adam happy without making hardly a dent in their salary cap.

I just don't get it.

How it went down earlier:
Me upstairs; checks OHHH FUCK!! YOU GOTTA BE KIDDING ME!!!

Wife downstairs: What's wrong? Did something happen? Is everything ok?

Me: NO!!!!

Wife echoing up from downstairs: Oh my god, what's the matter??

Me yelling from upstairs: Adam is now a Colt!!

Wife: What?

Me: HE'S A COLT!!!

Wife: Who? What are you talking about?

Me: Adam Viantieri signed with the COLTS!! [Biting tongue so as not to swear around impressionable children]

Wife: Ohh jeez...

Later that evening, watching TV...

Me: I can't believe Adam is a Colt.

Wife: What are they doing? Is anybody left on the team?

Me: Tom Brady, as far as I know... I can't believe Adam's a Colt.

Wife: Ok. Is this going to go on all night?

Me: I can't believe Adam is a Colt. [Punches couch pillow]

Wife: Ok, it's over now. Get over it! [Huffs]

Is this a test of faith from the Football Gods? Are they trying to find out if all my 'In Belichick We Trust' is just an empty statement? There has got to be something going on down there in Foxboro, some kind of mega deal that's waiting to be unleashed.

I was just thinking earlier today that I officially can't wait for baseball to start. I don't know what suddenly caused this feeling, maybe it happened because it is now officially Spring, I don't know, but something clicked today and I really want some baseball games to start soon.

On that note, I think I will borrow an old saying that used to be used for The Sox and apply it to The Pats current situation.

No matter what happens, there'll be 53 players on the football field come Sept.


Aww FUCK. Vinatieri a Colt??

You gotta be fucking kidding me Adam Vinatieri a Colt?? What the FUCK!?

Peyton Manning and Adam Vinatieri are now on the same team. I can't fucking believe it. Talk about skewed reality.

Next thing you know, Vanderjerk will be a Patriot. Imagine that scenario. Vander-jackass and Rodney Harrison sharing the same locker-room.

I'm so beyond flabbergasted right now. I'm literally too shocked to even try to say anything remotely substantial or logical. All I can bring myself to say is, FUUUUCK!! Fuck Fuck Fuck Fuckin' FUCK!

Friday, March 17, 2006

Somebody signed...

So The Pats finally signed somebody, former San Diego receiver, Reche Caldwell.

Don't feel stupid, I have no idea who he is either, but you know what, that's ok, because I don't have to know who he is. Bill Belichick and Scott Pioli know who he is and that is good enough for me.

Meanwhile, back at the ranch, I found this article the other day and thought it was link worthy.

It kind of talks about stuff that we already know, that the Pats don't make big splashes in free agency, yadda yadda yadda, but even so, I did find it was somewhat soothing to my jangled Pats Fan nerves, so there ya go...

Can somebody in Foxboro give Troy Brown a call?

Hey Bill and Scott,

Faithfull Pats fan, mrbandw here. Hey I was just wondering if somebody over there could give Troy Brown a call.

I know you guys are really busy right now, getting ready for the draft and making deals and trying to find somebody to play receiver, linebacker, corner and running back, so just give me Troy's digits and I'd be happy to ring him up and let him know that we definetely want him to come back to the Pats next year, and to just sit tight and you guys will get around to calling him eventually.

Thanks dudes, TTYL

Your faithful fan on the internets,

Wednesday, March 15, 2006

See ya Willie...

I always knew it could happen, but I always thought it wouldn't. Willie McGinest is a now a Cleveland Brown. I had this crazy idea in my head that The Pats were going to try and make him an offer that would keep him in a Patriot uniform this year.

It's going to be weird seeing #55 coming after QB's in that ugly brown uni with the orange helmet... Dammit.

Oh, and since we're talking about guys heading out of Foxboro, I never gave props to Christian Fauria, now with the Redskins. He was a good tight end. All the guy ever did was catch touchdowns. Good luck down in Dan Snyder's kingdom dude.

Andre Davis is now a Buffalo Bill. Davis was a mainly a disappointment last season but he came on strong towards the end of the year. Eh. See ya Andre. Hopefully his performance does not suddenly take off now that he's playing for a division rival...

Last but not least, Matt Chatham is now a Jet. He was a decent backup LB for the Pats and a solid contributor to the team. See ya Matt.

The Pats are going to sign somebody, besides Artrell Hawkins and Hank Poteat, eventually...

In the meantime just keep repeating after me, In Belichick We Trust... [and sign Adam fer chrissakes, will ya??]

Tuesday, March 14, 2006

Now departing...

Ahh, the changing face of the NFL. Free agency is well under way and there are a lot of big name players jumping to new teams.

As expected, David Givens got the lucrative offer he was hoping for. He'll now be playing for Tennessee.

I can't say this was unexpected, though the recent stories in the press had given me a false hope that Givens might be back with The Pats. I'll be sorry to see Givens leave the team. He was a solid contributor in the receiving corps.

However, at the same time, reading that Keyshawn Johnson was recently cut by Dallas has me somewhat intrigued. The Pats just lost a good receiver in Givens. Could Johnson take Givens' spot in the receiving corps for The Pats? Would he be able to fit into New England's 'team first' style?

Johnson seemed to be fairly well behaved with The Cowboys under Parcells and he is still a very productive player. Keyshawn would certainly make a nice target for Tom Brady and along with Deion Branch, that would be a nice one-two receiver combination... Johnson was with the Jets during Belichick's tenure there but I can't say that I have the slightest inkling of a clue as to wether the two of them saw eye to eye.

The size of Johnson's ego makes me think that the chances of him coming to New England are slim. Mr, 'Give me the Damn Ball' probably would not be able to handle the title of '#2 receiver'. At the same time, my gut tells me The Pats might show some interest in him. It's possible that feeling is the meatballs I ate for dinner as well.

It's starting to sound like Willie McGinest could be joining RAC and former Patriot Ted Washington down in Cleveland. RAC is working on putting together a formidable defense down there...

Still no news on Adam Vinatieri. Every day I check ESPN's headlines throughout the day, looking for some news on Adam's situation. I'm hoping something is happening behind the scenes at Foxboro that will have Adam signed to the long term deal he is looking for...

Around the rest of the NFL, The AFC East just got a bit more interesting. Dante Culpepper is now a Miami Dolphin and the competition for the Division Title just got even tougher, depending on the state of Culpepper's knee, that is.

On a final note, which team is going to pick up the T.O. time bomb? I wonder if a desperate AFC East team will take a chance on him... Doubtful, and hopefully, not. It's being speculated that he is headed for Dallas. Parcells, Terry Glenn and T.O. Talk about a match made in heaven...

Now that the Free Agent game is underway, it may be another week or so before we see any arrivals in Foxboro. There is always a slight exodus at the beginning of free agency as the Pats bide their time and wait for some of the dust to settle. I have no doubt things are busy in Foxboro.

In Belichick We Trust

Friday, March 10, 2006

Will they stay or will they go now?

With Free Agency set to begin in just a few hours, here are the remaining players on the Patriots unrestricted free agent list. Tomorrow could very well be a sad day for New England fans, depending on what many of these players do.

Adam Vinatieri
David Givens
Tom Ashworth
Stephen Neal
Troy Brown
Andre’ Davis
Matt Chatham
Tim Dwight
Heath Evans
Christian Fauria
Doug Flutie
Chad Scott
Michael Stone

We already lost Willie, but hopefully he will return. Reports in the press seem optimistic that this will happen, unless he gets some unbelievable offer from some other team, such as the Cleveland Browns...

I have pretty much resigned myself to losing Givens at this point, but hopefully Adam will return to the Pats. Hopefully we can get most of the O-Linemen on the list back with the Pats as well. We need that depth on the O-Line that these guys provide and at this point they are all experienced and versatile veterans.

Troy Brown should return and I hope we can keep Fauria as well. He was not extremely productive last year but he is a good 3rd level Tight End...

Davis could wind up being a diamond in the rough if he can stick around and continue the strides he made late last year.

Lets face it. I'd like to see them all come back, but that's not gonna happen. At this point Pats fans hope for the best and wait to see some arrivals in Foxboro instead of departures... Such as Kevin Mawae perhaps? We'll see...

In Belichick We Trust

Thursday, March 09, 2006

I hate it when my favorite players get cut...

I first read the news over at 'Cursed to First'. Big Willie McGinest has been cut by The Patriots due to salary cap reasons.


Sometimes the cold reality of the NFL just plain sucks. Despite a series of groin injury problems earlier in his career, Willie has been one of the Patriots' best players over the past 12 years. Since putting those injury problems behind him, Willie has proven himself to be an unstoppable force on the Pats D. The man is simply a sack producing, offense disrupting, machine.

The problem is that Willie also happens to be 34 years old and although he is still a high quality player, as was evidenced by his record-setting performance in the playoffs this past season, his cap number of almost 7 mil is just too high for a player of his age. (Hey, can't a fellow thirty-something get some respect? Yo. Willie is still a playa.)

Hopefully Willie will be back with the Pats, but the word on the street is that there are several teams out there who may be interested in procuring his services. Guess we'll just have to wait and see... as always.

In the meantime, for those of you looking for more Pats news, I'll point you to several quality sites to check out. has a very good article looking at what the Pats next off-season moves might be.

Tom over at Patriots Report has been writing some extremely informative posts looking at the Pats offseason and their potential draft moves.

Pats Pulpit has also been putting out some great Patriots off-season info as well.

Finally, props go out to Miguel over at for the awesome salary cap info his page provides.

Good news out of Texas... no more acronym talk

The word has come down and it is good. The NFL owners have accepted the players union proposal and have extended the CBA for another 6 years. Thank goodness. Too bad they could not have extended it for another 50 years so we would not have to talk about it again for a very long time...

Now that the CBA is out of the way, free agency will start on Friday at some point (there are reports on ESPN stating that the owners would like to extend the start of free agency for one more day.)

With the new salary cap sitting at close to 110 Million, the Pats are in extremely good shape to go out and sign free agent players. Even if the CBA had not passed, the Pats would have been ok. They would have still been under the cap, but they would have been very restricted in their ability to go after players. Now, that will no longer a problem and I am very interested to find out who the Pats will try to go out and get on the free agent market.

As far as some of The Patriots own free agent players go, it has been reported that the team made an offer to Adam Vinatieri that would have kept him the highest paid kicker in football but he turned the offer down. Apparently Adam wants to find out what his value is on the free agent market and nobody can blame him for that.

Hopefully Adam will enjoy his ride in the waters of free agency and then decide that New England is the place to be, but if he does not, I am content with the knowledge that The Pats tried to sign him with a lucrative offer, which was then not accepted by the player. The Pats have done their best to keep Adam in New England and that is good enough for me. As the old saying goes, you can lead a horse to water but you can't make him drink.

Wednesday, March 08, 2006

NFL CBA B$ - Let's make a deal...

This is it. No, really. This really is it, the final day of decision for the NFL team owners. It's now or never. They either hold their noses and ratify a new Collective Bargaining Agreement, or they start down the long painful path to NFL Armageddon.

I'm hoping that the owners take the deal, even though, from what I've read, they don't particularly care for the offer they are being made. From this fan's perspective, I don't really care how all that money is divided up, all I care about is that the game is not interrupted and that it's integrity remains intact. For that to happen, that means there needs to be a salary cap.

It would be a shame if the NFL were to devolve into what Major League Baseball has become, where select teams, such as the Yankees and the Red Sox, teams with money to spend, are the perennial contenders year in and year out, while the majority of the teams, teams with far less money to spend, wind up as continual also-rans.

If you are a fan of the Washington Redskins, a team with a George Steinbrenner like owner in Dan Snyder, an owner with plenty of money and no apparent problem with throwing large amounts of it around, maybe an uncapped NFL is a future that you would like to see come to fruition, but what if you are a fan of a team like the Jacksonville Jaguars? Do you really want to see your NFL team turn into the Tampa Bay Devil Rays of football, a team that seems to have no hope of ever keeping up with the big boys of MLB? Or maybe you'd like to compare your NFL team to the Toronto Blue Jays, a team that puts up a fight every year, but continually ends up in the middle of the pack. Buffalo Bills fans, can you picture that scenario?

From my standpoint as a Pats fan, I want to see the NFL continue with a salary cap in place, but I'm confident that my team will be ok either way. The Pats have shown that they know how to be successful within the Salary Cap system, and if it were removed, I'm sure the Krafts would make good use of their money and bring the best players they could to New England.

I will admit, there is a greedy, stupid little part of me that would love to see this happen, because in an uncapped NFL, The Pats would be able to remain as one of those upper-echelon teams for many years to come, but the football fan in me is thinking about the big picture, and the game of football itself, and I know that without a salary cap, the overall quality of the game would begin to decline.

The thing that makes the NFL the greatest of the professional sports leagues is the quality of the competition every week. The NFL is the only pro game that I will watch, even if my team is not playing in the game. I will sit down on a Sunday afternoon and thoroughly enjoy watching a K.C. vs Jets or Atlanta vs. Green Bay game. And while I may occasionally watch an NHL game featuring a team other than the Boston Bruins, simply because I enjoy the game of hockey, I can't say that about baseball or basketball. I would never sit down to watch a baseball game not featuring the Red Sox or a basketball game not featuring the Celts. There's just not enough interest in the sport itself there for me.

In the NFL, it is different. In the NFL, every team has a chance to win, every week, regardless of the win-loss record. In the NFL, every year there is a chance that this could be the year for your team to win a championship, even if your team went 2-14 the previous season. Only in the NFL can a team go 5-11 one year and then the following year, win the league Championship. Stuff like that just does not happen in the other professional sports leagues.

Hopefully the NFL owners do the right thing, take the deal and stay on the path of football goodness that currently exists with a salary cap in place.

Unfortunately, putting my faith in a bunch of very, very rich men to cooperate with each other and share their money for the good of the game does not give me a warm and fuzzy feeling, but I'm hoping that at the end of the day, the NFL owners will recognize what is at stake.

Friday, February 24, 2006

I miss football...

While most people around here seem to be frothing at the mouth for baseball to start, I am one of the oddballs that is sitting here pining for football. Damn I miss it. When does camp kick in?

The Pats off-season has kicked in in earnest with the scouting meat market combine taking place this past week, as well as the start of the free agency period right around the corner.

When it comes to the players on The Patriots, I am like Spock. I try really hard to be all cold and un-emotional, but sometimes, I just can't help it, that damn emotion just comes out.

It's looking like The Pats could potentially be losing some very good players during this off-season and if one of them is named Adam, I may have a conniption. Hopefully it won't come to that. If the Pats let the best clutch kicker in the history of the NFL go to another team, I will be beyond upset. I will be fucking pissed off. In my mind, Adam is one of the core pieces of this team that you do not want to lose. Yes, you might have to pay more than you would want to for a kicker, but as Gino Cappiletti has said on many occasions, Adam is more than just a 'kicker', Adam is a 'football player' and he is part of the group of key players that has made the Patriots what they are over the past 10 years. Just fucking sign Adam. Don't piss me off...

From reading the various reports, and from my own common sense in watching and understanding the situation, it seems inevitable that The Pats will lose David Givens. That really is a shame. He has been a go-to receiver for The Pats over the last 4 years and for selfish reasons, I would hate to see him leave the team.

At the same time, this is Givens' chance to make the big, big bucks and you can't begrudge a guy for wanting to hit the pay-dirt when his chance comes up... You never know, maybe he will want to stay with The Pats. The chance to play for a Superbowl contender does have it's merits, but it's hard to pass up what I'm sure will be offered to Givens for his services by teams that are looking for a high quality receiver.

Some other notable players on the Unrestricted Free Agent List are:
Tom Ashworth
Troy Brown
Matt Chatham
Andre' Davis
Tim Dwight
Heath Evans
Christian Fauria
Doug Flutie
Artrell Hawkins
Stephen Neal
Hank Poteat
Chad Scott
Michael Stone
Ross Tucker

Some will be back and some won't. Regardless of how attached to a player a fan may become, there will always be someone that will eventually take their place and hopefully help The Pats to return to the Superbowl on '07. That is the cold reality of the NFL (but if Adam's not back I'll still be fucking pissed. Stupid emotions...)

Sign Him...

I completely understand that all the uncertainty surrounding the current state of the NFL's Collective Bargaining Agreement is throwing everybody's contract negotiations all out of whack.

I also realize that Belichick and Pioli are doing the right thing by not making rash decisions until the CBA situation is worked out.

That being said, from a purely emotional standpoint, I have to say: Bill, Scott, SIGN ADAM!

I still get a little misty just looking at this photo...

You guys have a week. Make it happen... Just make it happen.

Sunday, February 12, 2006

Pats / Sox Nation Frapper Map...

The Patriots and Red Sox Nation map on Frapper has been slowly but surely gathering new members.

I am glad to see people seem to like the map. If you have not added yourself, swing on by and stick a pin in there! No obligations. It's all just for fun!

Monday, February 06, 2006

My lame Superbowl...

Various Superbowl XL afterthoughts:

- Every time I clicked over to the ABC's pre-game coverage, hoping to catch some Bill B, Super B pre-game analysis, they were showing a commercial or some ridiculous segment that I had absolutely no interest in.

- I tried to limit my Football intake yesterday, just to give my wife a break (I'm so thoughtful). After all, game coverage did start at like 10 PM Sat night...

- While watching the NFL Films Superbowl highlight shows, it seriously started to feel like nearly every other Superbowl had either The Cowboys, Steelers or The Steelers, Cowboys. It began to get a little sickening.

- I had forgotten how much I hated 'The Mile High' salute.

- I missed the pre-game ceremony featuring the MVPs from past Superbowls and I also missed Tom Brady doing the coin flip. I was watching the Superbowl 36 highlights, which ran till 6:30 PM, and I was so into it that I completely forgot the Superbowl starts at some weird time like 6:18 or something... I was kind of bummed that I didn't get to see Tom Brady and Dion Branch up there with all the other Superbowl MVPs and I really wanted to see Brady flip the coin. I was actually looking forward to that more than the game itself but when I switched the channel over to the game it had already started. Oh well.

- After looking forward to the Superbowl all week, I missed watching most of game and didn't even see the end of it.. Some time late Sunday afternoon I came down with some kind of 'stomach thing' (I'll spare you the details) and around the beginning of the 2nd quarter of the game I became so uncomfortable, I had to go up to my bedroom and lay down. I tried to watch the game for a little while in bed but the flickering from the TV screen was making me feel worse, so I shut it off.. I didn't know who won the game till this morning. I was hoping I would find out it was Seattle but I had a feeling it was going to be Pittsburgh... It was.

- I was reading some of the news about the game on the interweb this morning and I was pissed when I read that all the lame-ass Pittsburgh fans at the stadium had booed Dion Branch and Tom Brady during their MVP introductions and had booed Tom Brady during the coin flip. Pittsburgh fans are like school on Saturday. And to think I actually felt a small amount of pity for them last week. F U Steeler fans. I can't believe I actually felt a little bad for you guys. I hope you're finally satisfied. It only took your team 14 years to back up all the talk with an actual accomplishment.

- Even though I would have preferred watching the game instead of lying in the fetal position in bed, it sounds like I did not miss much of a game. I won't be surprised if the Superbowl XL highlight show is scheduled for an early morning time-slot on ESPN2 next year.

- 5 months till Training Camp starts...


Sunday, February 05, 2006

The Superbowl is a Holiday. Happy Superbowl!

Despite what my mother-in-law may like to believe, The Superbowl is a holiday, a great holiday and, as far as I'm concerned, the best holiday of the year.

Today is a day when everybody gets the same present, a (hopefully) great Football Game to watch with the two best teams in the NFL fighting for the right to be called 'Champions'. For fans of the eventual winner, it's a very special present indeed, for as a football fan, when your team wins the biggest game of all, there's nothing like it in the world. The feeling of seeing your team win The Superbowl can only be described as pure joy. It's a feeling of happiness that stays with you for months afterwards and you get a heart-warming feeling in your chest with every reminder of it. A smile will come to your face every time you see that Sports Illustrated ad featuring your team on the the cover of the hard-bound Superbowl Champions commemorative book.

As a Pats fan, I've considered myself to be very lucky these last few years, watching my team take home the Lombardi Trophy 3 times. I went through what I refer to as sports-inflicted torture during all 3 of The Pats recent Superbowl appearances, but the payoff at the end made all the writhing on the floor, acting like a complete lunatic and pulling out every insane superstition in the book worth it.

For me, Superbowl 36 (Pats / Rams) ranks beneath only my wedding and the birth of my children as one of my life's greatest moments. (My wife feels a little differently about that. 9 months pregnant at the time, she was literally moments away from calling an ambulance at the end of the game as I collapsed and lay sprawled motionless on the living room floor, reveling in the feeling of pure bliss.)

Of course, just because my team is not in The Big Game this year, that does not mean I won't thoroughly enjoy watching the Superbowl. Even when your team is not in it, the Superbowl is always a game to look forward to and the Superbowl games of last few years have been very exciting and enjoyable to watch.

Superbowl 34 was an incredible game, with the Titans missing the game winning TD by about 1 foot as the final seconds came off the clock. I didn't think a Superbowl could match that type of excitement until my Pats took on the Rams in what may have been the most exciting Superbowl ever played in SB 36.

Ok, Superbowl 37 may not have been considered 'exciting', but as a lifelong hater of the Oakland / La-La Land Raiders, I was quite happy to see the shellacking that the Tampa Bay Bucs put on The Raiders and, adding insult to injury, I appreciated the fact that the ass-whooping was applied by the team's former coach, Jon Gruden, only one year removed from his head coaching position at Oakland. I was also thankful to Oakland QB Rich Gannon for erasing Pats QB Drew Bledoe's name from the record books as the owner of the record for tossing the most interceptions in a Superbowl.

My team played and won in both Superbowl 38 and 39, so obviously, I am biased about those being great games, but I think even non-Pats fans would have to agree that both of those games were very exciting to watch. Superbowl 38 had it all: Defensive chess matches and Offensive firepower and in Superbowl 39, the game once again came down to the wire (and a near heart attack for me).

I'd like to wish the best of luck to the fans of both Pittsburgh and Seattle today. I'll be pulling for Seattle, but if Pittsburgh wins, that's ok too. Overall, I'm pretty neutral here. I'm mainly pulling for Seattle to win simply because they've never been in the big game before and also because Seahawks LB Lofa Tatupu is the son of one of my favorite Patriot players, Mosi Tatupu.

Yes, The Pats are not in the game this year, but at least there's a little bit of Patriots flavor in it. I'll be trying to catch Bill Belichick's pre-game analysis in between the NFL Films Highlight shows that air on ESPN2. And of course, there's the 'Patriots Hour' on ESPN2, with the Superbowl 38 and 36 highlight shows starting at 5:30 and Tom Brady doing the coin-flip to start the game.

Enjoy the Superbowl everybody. Let's hope it's a good one because after this it's a long stretch till August.

Thursday, February 02, 2006

Playoff nightmares...

Last night I had a real hard time sleeping.

I had a crazy nightmare that I had tickets to a Patriots playoff game, but when I got to the stadium (for some reason carrying with me a life-size Tedy Bruschi cardboard stand-up), the guy manning (Freudian slip right there?) the gate would not let me inside.

I kept telling the nightmare gate-keeper that there was nothing wrong with my ticket, but he kept giving me the the run-around and made me do all kinds of silly things.

I had to go to the Pats front office and get my credit card checked and then, after I came back to the admission gate with a printout of my balances, the ticket guy was telling me that my card was maxed out, even though it was not, and because of that I could not use my ticket to get into the game. I had to go work it out with the credit card company if I wanted to get in.

The whole time I could see through the gate that the game was starting and I was missing it and I kept asking the burly ticket guy with the big handlebar moustache what any of this stuff had to do with my ticket to the game. My ticket was perfectly legit and real so let me in! But he would not let me in. I was barred from The Pats playoff game.

I tossed and turned all night, fitfully going back and forth between the admission gate and The Pats front office, calling the credit card company on some pay phone, and begging the admission gate guy to just take my ticket and let me in, all the while missing the Pats in the playoffs.

I think my sub-conscious has not yet come to grips with the fact that The Pats are not in the Superbowl this weekend. My wife just thinks I'm nuts.

Sunday, January 29, 2006

A day without Football is like a day without Sunshine...

A weekend without football. It's not easy going cold turkey but it happens every year and every year it's not fun. The NFL should think about doing some kind of season recap during the off-week before The Superbowl. They could have a special multi-hour show featuring all of the best plays from the past season. I'd watch it.

Thankfully, in lieu of football, TLC was showing an Overhaulin' marathon which kept my lazy ass entertained for several hours. There was a lot I could have accomplished today, but instead, I watched Chip Foose create automobile art. And I don't feel bad about it.

Wednesday, January 25, 2006

ESPN2's NFL Films Superbowl Highlight Schedule...

Extreme thanks go to Ms. Brightside for finding this and pointing it out to me.

ESPN2's schedule for airing the NFL Films Superbowl Highlight shows on Super-Sunday can be found here.

Note to Pats fans:
Superbowl 31 (Pats / Packers) and 20 (Pats / Bears) air between Noon and 1 PM.
Superbowl 39 (Pats / Eagles) airs at 4:30 PM
Superbowl 38 (Pats / Panthers) and 36 (Pats / Rams) air between 5:30 and 6:30 PM.

Extra coolness: The schedule was based, partially at least, on a survey where people ranked the best Superbowls and picked the order in which they preferred to have them shown. I can't help but notice that Superbowl 36, Pats / Rams, will bring us right into the start of The Big Game. Nice.

Sunday, January 22, 2006

AFC / NFC Championship games...

Two weeks in a row of rooting for the Steelers? It was a surreal experience to be sure, but since there is no other team in the NFL that I dislike more than The Denver Broncos, it came down to a making a choice between the lesser of two evils.

Before the game began, the announcers noted that it was a beautiful day for a football game in Denver. One of the people I was watching the game with commented that it was a beautiful day for a game here in Massachusetts as well.

Hey, I didn't say it.

I've pretty much come to terms with the fact that The Pats are done for the year, but I'll admit to feeling a pang of bitterness at the start of the AFC Championship Game when it was The Denver Broncos taking the field at Invesco Stadium and not The Pats running out onto the field at The Razor. I shoved it down and cast it aside. The Pats' season is over. End of story. Move on.

The Steelers pretty much dominated the Denver Broncos in front of their own fans, sending Denver off the field to an embarrassing chorus of boos at half-time, down 24-3. Although I enjoyed watching the Broncos get a beat down at the hands of the Steelers, one thing I've never understood is how a fan could boo their own team, especially on a day when they're playing for a chance to get into the Superbowl. Lame.

I took vindictive pleasure in the fact that Denver gave up 4 turnovers, 3 of which which the Steelers converted into points, but I also found myself wishing that those Denver turnovers had taken place last week (it always comes back to The Pats for me).

The final score of the AFC game was 34-17, Steelers. Although I would have loved to have seen it, I missed Shannon Sharpe's reaction to the final result of the game. I like to imagine that Boomer Esiason leaned over to say, "Call The National Guard because The Steelers just killed The Broncos..."

In the NFC game, the Seahawks rolled over the Carolina Panthers. It was barely even a contest, with the 'Hawks winning the game easily, 34-14.

So it looks like my hoped for Superbowl scenario is set. Seahawks vs. Steelers. Whew. Now I can finally stop rooting for The Steelers, which has made me feel all icky.

I think this match-up actually has the potential to be a pretty competitive Superbowl. I'll be hoping for a Seahawks win. Now the big question is, what do we do between now and February 5th?

Friday, January 20, 2006

McDaniels named Pats Offensive Coordinator, Belichick locked in long term.

With his on the job training complete, The Pats named Josh McDaniels as their Offensive Coordinator today.

I figured this move might happen a little farther down the line in the off-season, but it makes sense that The Pats would pull the trigger on the move now. The coaching staff is now set and and The Pats have one less loose end to deal with.

It sounds like we can include Bill Belichick's status in that statement as well. It seems like hardly a word has been spoken about this, but Pats owner Robert Kraft recently revealed that Belichick's contract situation had been quietly taken care of, either via an extention or a new contract, (he would not divulge any details) and that Coach Belichick will be patrolling The Patriots Sideline and calling the shots for The Pats for a long time to come.

It's stuff like this that makes me truly appreciate The Patriots in such a profound way, I have a hard time even expressing it in words. This team is run so professionally and in such a methodical, business-like way, it is incredibly impressive to me, especially in this day an age. Compared to the way some teams operate, it continues to be a uniquely refreshing thing to witness.

There's no circus. There's no drama. There's no silly side show press conferences. The Pats take care of business and that's it. GM / Head Coach Bill Belichick's contract is getting close to expiring? It's taken care of. It's a done deal. Before there is even a hint of a possibility that his contract could expire and potentially cause problems, (there was still at least a year left on the previous contract), Belichick is locked in for the long haul, with hardly even a whisper about it in the press (as intended). Then the news is tucked away, barely a paragraph long, in an article that talks about Bob Kraft's thoughts on the Denver game and the upcoming off-season.

Have I mentioned that I love this team?

Now then, what was that some people were saying about The Pats Dynasty coming to an end? Don't expect it to happen any time soon. When you're team is solid at the top, you've got no worries. Yes, there may be some down years, but with Kraft and Belichick running the show, I know this team will always be competing for a Championship.


Thursday, January 19, 2006

He's Back, Baby!

Great news that I am very glad to hear, Theo Epstein will be returning to the Red Sox, though I am curious to know what his actual position will be.

Apparently we have to wait till next week to find out. Why? Well to annoy us of course! Hey, I'm just glad he's going to be back. I needed some good news to shake me out of my, upcoming weekend with no Patriots Fooball, funk.

Speaking of this weekend's games, I'll be rooting for the lesser of two evils, The Steelers, in the AFC match-up and the Seahawks in the, "In all honesty I really don't care who wins as long as it's a good game", NFC matchup.

Pats offseason needs...

Micheal Felger had a nice article in the Herald laying out The Pats offseason needs. Rather than re-iterate Felger's article, I'll just lay out some of my thoughts on the Pats off-season needs.

Front office:
Please. Kraft, Belichick, Pioli. We are golden.

The Defensive Coordinator job was filled by Pats linebacker coach Dean Pees almost immediately after Eric Mangini took the Jets job. Problem solved. I'm sure The Pats knew this was coming and they were obviously well prepared to replace Mangini. Pees was named as the DC literally hours after Mangini took the job. Next...

Last season, The Pats did not have a formal Offensive coordinator. QB Coach Josh McDaniels called in the plays with input from Belichick. I have a suspicion that last season was on the job training for Josh and won't be surprised if he is officially elevated to the position of Offensive Coordinator this year. I would not be surprised if he retains his responsibilities as QB coach as well.

QB - Flutie will be gone. Cassel takes the #2 spot. The Pats just need find a solid veteran to compete with Cassel and fill the #3 spot.

Tight ends -  I think we're set there. Might need to pick up a 3rd Tight End in case Fauria is not back. I like Fauria so I hope he comes back. He did not have as good a year this past year as he did in previous seasons, but he's still a solid 3rd Tight End.

Running back -  Dillon and Faulk will be here next year but I would love to see the Pats try and draft a running back. Although plugging in free agent running backs has worked well over the last several years, it would be nice if the Pats could get a young 'franchise' running back to come in and be part of building a young foundation for the future.

Receivers - Felger thinks Givens may be gone next year and I hate to say it but he's probably right. I love Givens but let's face it, he is going to get a big offer from somebody and The Pats will most likely decline to match it. Bethel Johnson is gone. Andre Davis came back from his injury and was a solid contributor. He will probably be back. I hope Troy Brown comes back for one more year but I won't be surprised if he retires. Tim Dwight was ok on returns this past season but did not break any for TD's. The Pats had zero returns, on punts or kick-offs, run back for TD's last year, so that could make The Pats look for another specialist in that area... I expect The Pats will do their usual bit of finding receivers through the draft and free-agency.

O-Line: Solid. I expect few changes there. This is now a deep and experienced group. That's about the only positive thing that came out of all the damn injuries last year.

Linemen - If the Pats can just make Seymour happy, this is an area that is set. If the Pats cannot make Seymour happy, we have a problem. Hopefully the team will come up with a deal that is favorable to both parties. The run defense was terrible when Seymour was out of the lineup last year. Richard deserves the big bucks. The question is, will the Pats pay him what he thinks he deserves? This situation is going to stress me out all off-season. I hope the Pats and Seymour work this out.

Linebackers - This remains a solid group, but these guys are starting to age a bit as well. I expect to see the Pats bring in another LB either through the draft, free-agency or both. I will be curious to see what happens with Biesel and Brown. Could one or both be gone next year?

Cornerback / Safeties - As I mentioned above, if there was one good thing about the ridiculous amount of injuries last year, it's that our defensive backfield got a ton of valuable game experience. Gay will be back. Hobbs hopefully continues to make strides and Samuel will be back as well. Wilson will be back but the safety position is a concern. It's uncertain wether Harrison will be back from his leg injury or not. I will be praying to The Football Gods for his return to the field next year. The defensive backfield will be another area that the Pats will continue to draft players in. There is a chance that Ty Law could return to The Pats as well.

Kicking - We've got Adam. I would not mind seeing the Pats just sign him long term and end this franchise tag dance they do with him every year. Josh Miller should be back for punting duty.

Did I miss anything?

Wednesday, January 18, 2006

Universally despised?

After my site got linked by Deadspin the other day, I was prompted to leave my comfortable nook here in Patriots Nation and take a little spin around the web to see what others are saying about The Pats.

I learned that there are quite a few people out there who don't like The Pats! Can you believe it?

Of course, I completely understand the reason why some people dislike my team and I have no problem with it. In fact I appreciate it, since it comes from winning 3 Superbowls.

I've been on the other side, so I understand perfectly. Nobody likes to see the same team winning year after year, unless it's your team that is. I was sick of the 49ers in the 80's and I hated the Cowboys in the 90's, so I get it.

That being said, I hope some of the non-Pats fans out there will understand where we are coming from as well. After The Pats won SB 39 I wrote this:

"New England Patriots... Dynasty. Back when I was in college, a freind of mine was a big Niners fan. He would always talk about how his team was the 'Team of the 80's' and I would always say, well, someday it will be the Patriots turn and he would kind of laugh at me while I was being totally serious"

A lot of us waited a long time for this to happen to our team. Personally, I always thought winning one Superbowl would be the ultimate, and I never even dreamed of winning three. For long time Pats fans, this is a very special time so try not to begrudge us too much for enjoying the ride while it lasts.

Notice I did not say 'lasted'. The Pats may be out of it for this year and our dynasty may not run forever, but I'm sorry to have to inform you that it's not over yet either...

Oh, another thing I learned while rummaging around on the interweb, is that Raiders fans are still bitching about the 2001 Snow Bowl game. In-credible. All I can say about that is, people who live in glass houses should not throw stones. Two words for you Raiders fans who are still hung up on 'The Tuck Rule': Ben Fucking Drieth.

Dealing with the loss of Patriots Football...

It's a hollow feeling, knowing that The Pats are not going to be playing football this Sunday. Still, with a drawer full of Superbowl Championship t-shirts, I feel that I can't bitch about it too much.

In dealing with the end of The Pats season, I've been through several phases and now I am almost whole again.

Late Saturday night:
Accept reality of loss - "Holy fuck did that ever suck!"

All day Sunday:
Experience and bear the pain or grief - "I'm in a bad mood today. Don't bother me."

Mon - Tue:
Adjust to a world in which the Patriots Season is over - (sigh)

Withdraw and reinvest emotional energy - "All you people who think The Pats run is over can kiss my ass. We'll be back next year!"


Tuesday, January 17, 2006

Mangini to the Jets?

It's being reported that The Patriots' Defensive Coordinator, Eric Mangini, will shortly become the new head coach of the NY Jets. The deal has yet to be formally announced, but based on various news stories, it sounds like it's a virtual certainty at this point.

I had been pretty much ignoring this story up until recently, simply because I had found it hard to believe that The Jets would actually want to hire a guy with only one year of coordinator experience under his belt to take over as their new head coach, but it looks like it's going to happen.

Mangini seems to be a good up and coming coach. He did a great job as The Pats' secondary coach in prior seasons and while I would not say he was 'outstanding' in his 1st year as The Pats defensive coordinator, he did a decent job in his 1st year. The Pats D started out slow and then picked it up as the season went on, though it's reported that a big part of the team's 2nd half defensive turnaround had a lot to do with Belichick getting more involved.

I am happy that Mangini is finding success and I wish him well (except against The Pats of course), but I can't help but wonder what the Jets are thinking with this move. With only one year of coodinator experience, is Mangini ready to step in as a head coach in one of the toughest, if not the toughest market in the NFL?

I guess we'll find out. The Jets are in bad shape all around right now and I don't expect to see an immediate turnaround, though they can only go up from where they are now... I'm sure there will be some improvement, but next year could wind up being a tough one for the potential new head coach of the Jets. Could this be a repeat of the Pete Carroll years down in NY? We'll see.

In the meantime, this leaves The Pats in a lurch at the defensive coordinator position. What will the Pats do now? Will they look to fill the job from inside or outside the Pats organization? Pepper Johnson could be an internal candidate to move up and take the DC job. Or, does Belichick go out and get a coordinator to run the offense next year and then switch over to do double duty with the defense? Could Josh McDaniels be a potential internal candidate to run the offense?

With so many questions yet to be answered, it's already an interesting offseason for The Pats.


It's official. Eric Mangini is the new head coach of the NY Jets and I've got Elton John's 'Benny and the Jets' stuck in my head. "Eric... Eric... Eric Man-gini and the Jetttts."

Next season, Pats will face two teams in the AFC East that have Belichick proteges as head coaches. There's already Nick Saban coaching down in Miami and now Mangini and the Jettts (Sorry. Cant get the Elton out of my head). That means that The Pats, Jets and Fish will all be playing a very simelar style of defense next year. It also means that all 3 coaches are going to have a good idea what the other guy is going to try and do on defense. It should prove very interesting to see what kind of twists Belichick adds to his defensive schemes in order to keep our copy-cat AFC East rivals guessing.

We can now add Defensive Coordinator to The Pats' list of offseason needs.

Update 2:
Literally hours after Mangini took the Jets HC job, The Patriots named Dean Pees as their new defensive coordinator. No fucking around there. I love this team.


Sunday, January 15, 2006

Here's something you won't hear me say very often...

Go Steelers. I would love to see Pittsburgh upset Indy, in a spiteful, venomous sort of way...

Chances are high that it could happen, with Pitt up 21-10 late in the 4th.

Of course, it is with bitterness that I also realize that had The Pats not handed the game to Denver on a silver platter last night, we could be looking at a home game next week for the AFC Championship.

Ahh. What might have been... (sigh).

The Steelers won! Final score: 21-18, Pittsburgh.


Wow, that was sweet. The Steelers practically hand the game over to Indy for a chance to at least tie it, and Vander-jackass misses the field goal. Couldn't have happened to a nicer guy.

Oh, too bad Manning. Such a shame. Heh. (I know, I'm a jerk.)

I actually do feel kinda bad for Dungy though. My venom towards the Colts does not extend to him.

I'm sure the main stream sports media around the country are collectively committing hari-kari right now, with their golden boy Manning bounced from the playoffs, AGAIN!! Wait a min, I thought he was the greatest player in the history of the NFL?! Hmmm. Too bad they don't give out trophies for the best regular season.

I'll be rooting for Chicago in the NFC match-up...

10 -1

The Patriots seem to have a trend of setting incredible NFL records and then quickly ending the record setting run soon there-after. Unfortunately, that trend continued Saturday. After setting a record for consecutive post-season wins last week... well, we know what happened.

This Patriots loss is tough, very tough to take. The Pats had a great season this year and overcame many difficult obstacles. Getting into the divisional round of the playoffs is an impressive accomplishment after everything the Pats faced this season. Unfortunately, that is very small consolation for me at this moment. The fact that The Pats did this to themselves and gave the game away with 5 turnovers only makes things worse.

Off we go into the offseason. Sign Seymour ASAP and start looking into potential defensive coordinators in case we lose Mangini to The Jets. I expect The Pats will be evaluating the offensive coordinator possibilities as well.

As for the rest of the NFL playoffs? Go Seahawks. Yeah, I know they will probably not win against the eventual AFC opponent, but I cannot root for any of the AFC contenders. If it were a team like The Chargers, or even K.C., I could have gotten behind them, but I can't root for Denver, Pittsburgh or Indy. I despise all three of those teams.

I suppose everyone's NFL wet dream will finally come true this year and pretty boy Peyton will finally get his ring. Is that bitterness I hear? Yes my friends it is... Nobody's perfect.

Fucking Denver. Dammit.

Even though the end of The Patriots season did not turn out the way I wanted, I am still proud of our team. We will be back next year and we will continue to be a contender. Count on it. But right now... Fuck. This sucks.


Saturday, January 14, 2006

Pats / Donkeys: 2nd Half: Do or Die time...

Well I had managed to calm down for half-time, but as soon as the 2nd half started, the blood pressure and stress-o-meter shot right back up to the max.

I am no longer able to sit on the couch. I have wrapped myself up in my Lucky Patriots Fleece Blanket and have taken to writhing in agony on the Patriots 'Nautical Blue' colored carpet with every play.

The wife has officially had enough of watching this performance and has headed upstairs to read... That is good. The Pats do better when she is upstairs reading... Time to bring out the superstition factor. Whatever it takes...

I've got 4 beers left for the 2nd half. 2 for each quarter, one for no holds barred game emergencies and one for either celebration or... well we wont talk about the 2nd option.


End of the 3rd:
A crushing turn of events for The Pats. After driving to the Broncos 5, a Brady interception leads to another Denver TD. 17-6 Broncos. The Patriots totally controlled the 3rd quarter, yet they continue to turn the ball over. All 17 points for The Broncos have come directly off of turnovers... Time is running out...

15 min left in the season...

12 and change left in the season. Adam just missed a field goal, so it's still 17-6, Denver.

I am starting to get that sick feeling in the pit of my stomach. It kills me to say this, but I think it's going to take a football miracle at this point for The Pats to come back in this one... dammit.

Down to 8 and change left in the season and Denver has scored yet another TD as a direct result of a Patriot turnover. It's now 24 - 6, Denver. The Broncos have scored all 24 points off of Patriots turnovers. The Patriots have literally given this game away. The Pats have held Denver on defense and have driven the ball on offense, yet they have handed this game to Denver with turnovers.

This is a horrible, gut wrenching feeling I am experiencing right now. It's going to take an absolute miracle for The Pats to come back at this point. What a way to go out...

Under 7 min left now. The Pats just put up a quick TD to cut the score to 24-13, but the clock is now the enemy. Denver is killing the clock now and it sure seems to be running especially fast. 4:30 to go... Thats it for me. I'll be busy praying to the Football Gods.

Pats / Donkeys: 1st Half = Total stress...

Half-time post.

1st half result: 10-3 Donkeys.

Stress. Total stress.

The fact that the Pats are down by a TD is lucky, but also a shame, because the defense put up an incredible performance during the 1st half, holding Denver out of the end-zone with a goal-line stand from within the Pats 5 yard-line, as well as just being able to keep Denver points off the board the entire half with The Broncos starting on the Pats side of the field for literally the entire game.

The Pats have had awful field position every time they have gotten the ball. Yet, they still managed to get the 1st score of the game with a field goal. After that, things fell apart. A Kevin Faulk fumble led to a Denver TD and then an Ellis Hobbs fumble on the ensuing kickoff led to a field goal. Result: 10-3 Denver.

Like I said, it could be worse right now. There were several missed scoring opportunities by both teams in the 1st half and being down by a TD is not totally unmanageable for The Pats. They just need to pull things together and protect the damn ball.

Unfortunately, The Broncos get the ball right back to start the 2nd half. I hope The Patriots can turn things around in the 2nd because it would be a shame if the Pats lost the game because of those turnovers.

30 min left... Don't let it end here Patriots. You withstood the 1st half onslaught. Time for some 2nd half heroics.


Pats vs. Denver: tonight!

Well here it is, the day has arrived and it is somewhat of a bittersweet day. These next few weekends will feature the best football games of the year, but it also means that the football season is drawing to a close. 4 games this weekend, 2 next week and then, the big one: The Superbowl.

They say with baseball, the season is designed to break your heart, starting in the spring, with everything coming back to life, winding it's way through the long, hot days of summer and finally ending in the fall, just on the cusp of winter. What does that mean for football then, starting in the fall, with the leaves falling off the trees and working it's way through the short cold winter days? Hmmm. I guess I'm not philosophical enough to figure that one out. Football does not tend to have the same kind of romantic sensibilities applied to it as with baseball, which is, frankly, fine by me. I appreciate that football has a more straight-forward style. Football certainly does provide a respite from the dreariness of winter, and when it's over, it's a bleak stretch between the Superbowl and Spring Training...

We are at the point of the year when every football game is very exciting to watch, because we are seeing the best teams facing each other in do-or-die situations. I don't usually watch a lot of games outside of The Pats games during the regular season, but during the playoffs, I watch all the games. My wife can't stand this of course, but she puts up with it because she knows there's only a few weeks left. (I think she actually likes football more than she lets on, but she just does not like to admit it! Very stubborn!)

In any case, thankfully the end of the football season is not here yet! The Patriots will play the Broncos in Denver tonight in a Divisional Playoff game. Lets hope the Pats season will continue to next weekend as well.

I have confidence that this is a winnable game for The Pats, but I will admit it, if there's one game I dread seeing on my team's schedule every year, it's an away game at Denver. No other team in the NFL has laid the smack down on The Pats more consistently over the years than The Denver Broncos. They are like the bully that has pushed you around for years and you're best effort at fighting back has always ended up with a bloody nose. Until recently that is...

Fortunately, that 'bully' factor has been mitigated over the last few years and The Pats are not as easy for the Broncos to push around anymore. As I mentioned in an earlier post, the Pats have split the last 6 games against the Broncos:

W (home) 24 - 23
W (away) 28 - 19
L (away) 31 - 20
L (home) 24 - 16
W (away) 30 - 26
L (away) 28-20

As you can see, things are tilted a little bit too much in The Broncos favor over the last few games. Let's hope The Pats can even that out tonight with a win.

I've always felt that The Denver Broncos are to The Pats, what The Pats are to the Indianapolis Colts. For this reason, I had originally preferred to play The Colts this weekend. However, I've changed my thinking on this now. I'm thinking that this year's Playoffs is now very similar to the 2003 playoff run.

In '03, I was felt that the toughest test The Pats would face in the playoffs would be the game vs. The Tennessee Titans, and that if they could get past Tennessee, they rest would be cake. I had no fear of Indy then, and I have no fear of them now.

I think this year's playoffs are very much the same as '03. This game tonight vs. Denver is the toughest test the Pats will face in the Playoffs and it's much better to face The Broncos now than to have potentially faced them in an AFC Championship game. If they can win tonight, I have no doubt that The Pats can beat Indy or Pittsburgh for the AFC Championship.

First things first though. The Pats have got their work cut out for them in Denver, but I think that having already played them in the regular season will provide a boost to The Patriots chances of winning. Plus, we all know that this is a very different Patriots team, both on offense and defense, than the one that Denver faced in October.

Hopefully we will see a lot of this sort of thing tonight:


The music that runs in my head when I think about tonight's Pats game is Black Flag's 'Forever Time'

Time Time Time Forever time
It's time to walk by me
One last time, it's time
At first Relax
Get set
Get your message from time
Time, time, time, time Time
Time Time Forever time
It's time to look into my eyes
One last time,
It's time I feel

I'm some kind of death machine
With skin and muscles and a heart
That pumps my blood
Time, time, time, time, time
Time Time Forever time
It's time to kiss me goodbye
One last time,
It's time

This is the first time
This is the last time
It's my only time
But it's only time
Time Time Time


Wednesday, January 11, 2006

Pats opponents 2006, Gino dissed again...

The Pats schedule for '06 is now available.

Home: Bills, Dolphins, Jets, Texans, Colts, Broncos, Bears and Lions.

Away: Bills, Dolphins, Jets, Jaguars, Titans, Bengals, Packers and Vikings.

Of course, The Pats still have some games left to play on this year's schedule don't they?

The Pats face a difficult challenge this weekend out in Denver. Let's face it, historically, The Pats have not done well against Denver, especially when playing them at home. However, in the last few years, The Pats have turned things around a bit and have split the last 6 meetings with The Broncos.

The Patriots team that the Broncos will face in the playoffs this week is vastly different and greatly improved over the team that they played during the regular season. As you've probably read in about 10 other Pats sites, the Pats will be playing with Seymour, Bruschi, Mankins, Dillon, and Faulk this time around; key players who were all missing from the lineup for the 1st Broncos match-up during the regular season. In addition to that, we have a defensive backfield who's play is markedly improved over the group that took the field in October.

If the Patriots defensive line can stop the run, and I am confident that they can, that puts pressure on Jake the Snake. I expect to see Colvin and McGinnist turned loose in this game and hopefully this will press The Snake into a mistake (I'm a poet and didn't know it!). Additionally, the consistency and improved play of the front seven helps take the pressure off our secondary. The big plays have been cut down.

What this all comes down to, is that although the Pats will certainly be in a difficult and hostile environment, they still have an excellent chance at taking this game and moving on to the next round.

Well, as you can see, I've done an excellent job of talking myself out of all my worries in this game Saturday. The problem is, I can try and talk myself into a guaranteed win all I want, but talk is cheap. I think The Pats have a very good shot, but they cannot make mistakes. This cliche is totally true: The Pats need to play their best game of the year Saturday.

In the other AFC match this weekend, I will be shocked if Pittsburgh beats Indy, but I am hoping they will at least smack the Colts around and beat them up a little. Indy has not faced a 'tough' opponent in many weeks and may not be used to the smack that Pittsburgh is sure to bring.

If the Pats can get past Denver, hopefully they will face up against a very sore Indianapolis squad. First things first though... It's still 3 Games to Glory. The Playoffs are stressful, but I expect the stress-o-meter to get jacked up to the max for this Denver game.

In other Pats news, Gino Cappilletti was once again dissed in the NFL Hall of Fame ballot.


What the hell? Seriously. Who fucking votes for this thing anyway?? Gino should be in Canton. End of discussion.

Sunday, January 08, 2006

Up next, Denver...

Looks like the Pats will be heading to Denver to face the Broncos after Cincy got their asses handed to them today by Pittsburgh. Of course, it did not help much that Cincy lost their starting quarterback, Carson Palmer, in like the 3rd play of the game.

Still, things looked promising for Cincy early and they managed gain a pretty good lead at one point in the game. Unfortunately, things fell apart eventually and it seemed like every time I popped my head into the living room to check on the game, Cincy backup QB John Kitna was either fumbling the ball, dropping the ball or just plain throwing the ball away while running for his life.

It's too bad this happened to Cincy. That has got to suck. Your team is finally in the playoffs again after suffering for 15 years in the Football Phantom Zone, and within the 1st five min of the game, your starting QB is being carted off the field with a torn up knee. Damn. I feel for ya Cincy.

For the Pats, it's now 3 Games to Glory. This Denver game will be a very difficult match-up for The Pats. The last time we played them, they ran up a big score on several long plays down the middle of the field. Despite being down by a large margin, The Pats went on a comeback run and nearly stole another game in Denver, but came up just short, losing 28-20.

That was then, this is now.

The Pats have eliminated the problem of giving up big passing plays and are stout against the run once again. Our secondary is still our biggest weakness, but I am much less concerned about them going up against Jake Plummer than I would be about facing Peyton Manning. Our secondary is gelling and is battle tested now. The communication back there has improved tremendously and although they got burned a few times against Jacksonville, the Pats CB's and Safeties held their ground and laid out some killer hits along the way.

Personally, I would have preferred to face Indy next week, but if we have to go to Denver, so be it. It's a situation where you have to pick your poison. Neither road would have been easy. That being said, I like The Pats chances against Denver.


Saturday, January 07, 2006

Pats / Jags: 2nd half...

Well things have certainly turned around big time for The Pats in the 2nd half.

A huge TD run by the big Tight End, Ben Watson, who shrugged off 3 tacklers and took it to the house, followed by a 73 yard interception return for a TD by Asante Samuel, have put the boots to the ass of Jacksonville, big time.

28-3 Pats with 13 and change left in the 4th.

Leftwich is going to have to go to the pass now. Time for the D to shut things down. Nice job Pats. Lets buckle down now and finish it out...

11:39 in the 4th:
Jax is not going to go down with out a fight. They are in the Pats red zone and driving. Come on D. Hold them to 3...

Whoa. Wilfork and McGinnist just sacked Leftwich for a 15 yard loss on 3rd down. That's what I'm talking about.

The Jags went for the FG on the ensuing 4th down play and missed. Nice job defense!!. I gotta say, with Bruschi standing on the sidelines with his winter coat on, these guys have really stepped it up. Impressive... Most impressive (that's my Darth Vader circa 'Empire Strikes Back' voice. Heh.)

8:30 in the 4th and Leftwich is now standing on the sidelines. Garrard is in for Jax... 12th Man. You don't seem loud enough to me right now. Yell louder.

7:40 and The Pats just stuffed Fred Taylor on 3rd down. [Side note: I remember when Taylor came into the league w/ Robert Edwards.]. They're going for it on 4th and just converted on big play to the Pats 23. Fuck...

The Jags got to within the 10 but could not push it in. The Pats take over on downs inside the 10. Effin-A Cotton. Effin. A!

4 min and change. I think we can relax now with the score 28-3. There would have to be a series of miracles at this point for The Jags to come back in this game...

Wow. Brady just completed a pass to Dillon with a guy hanging off his leg and another guy grabbing at his chest. Damn the Pats just missed getting the 1st down by inches. Either way I have serious man-love for Brady right now after that play (not in a gay way, perv).

Total desperation for the Jags now. The Pats are just teeing off on the QB at this point. The Jags are going for it on 4th down again on their own side of the 50. They don't convert the 4th down and The Pats take over. This game is over my friends.

That's another NFL record for my team by the way... 10 playoff games without a loss. Let's keep that streak going. Willie McGinnist was huge tonight and set an NFL record for sacks in the post-season. Nice job Willie!

Cincy wins tomorrow, we go to Indy next Sunday. Pitt wins, we go to Denver for another Saturday night game. I wonder, is Indy is shaking in their cleats right now? I'll be rooting for Cincy tomorrow...


Pats / Jags: 1st Half

Hey gang. Checking in with a quick post for the Pats / Jags game. I could have gone to the game tonight but the price for the ticket was way out of my league. $160.00. That's a lot of milk and bread. Too rich for my blood. Oh well.

The 1st half has been very frustrating to watch.

One of the things that is getting under my skin is that Gil and Gino are waaaay ahead of the TV tonight. Usually the radio is only a few seconds ahead but tonight it is a good 10 seconds ahead, to the point where Gil is finishing the call just as it is starting on TV. At one point I actually considered going with the regular TV audio (I know, inconceivable!) but then realized it's Al Michaels and Jon Madden. F-that.

Although the Pats have the lead, which is obviously good, I feel like they are taking too many shots at the home run TD score instead of just trying to make 1st downs and sustain drives. This Jags team can kill you if you allow them to keep the score close, so we don't want to let these guys hang around.

I suspect this has been part of the reason for the continual attempts at long touchdown shots, that the Pats want to build up a quick insurmountable lead. Unfortunately, they have not been successful at it.

The Jags secondary has been tough and our receivers have been well covered.

Dillon and Bruschi's presence on the field has been sporadic. Faulk has come in and done a great job as the primary back but the D definetley seems to be missing Bruschi. The Jags big receivers have been taking advantage of our secondary.

The Jags have not played a very clean game themselves with quite a few penalties and a turnover. Thankfully they have only been able to put 3 points on the board.

Let's hope things get better for The Pats in the second half and they can start to put some distance between themselves and Jacksonville.


Friday, January 06, 2006

Playoffs Eve...

This Pats / Jags match-up tomorrow has me nervous.

I'm not comfortable with everybody and his uncle picking the Pats to win this game. The experts are giving the necessary lip service to the Jags, but in the end thats all it seems to be, lip service... Makes me feel kinda funny. Kinda like how everybody picked the Colts to annihilate The Pats in the Divisional playoffs last year. Look what happened to them. Nobody gave the Patriots a chance in that game and they utterly humiliated Indy.

Then again, The Pats are not the Colts. They know what they have to do and a bunch of loud mouthed football pundits and fans are not going to distract them or take away their focus. I'm sure they are not taking this Jacksonville team lightly, even if everybody else is. You can count me in the group that's not taking them lightly either. Anything can happen in an NFL Game.

Of course, this is normal behavior for me (though my wife would question exactly how 'normal' it is).

I always get nervous for Playoff games. It's a one game season now. There's no 5 game or 7 game series in the NFL. If you lose, you go home. Done. Of course, that is one of the things that makes the NFL great, but at the same time, it also makes it extra nerve wracking.

One thing that helps ease my worries is knowing that despite whatever the 'experts' say, The Pats know better. I know they are prepared and ready to play. Tom Brady has had his best season this year and he can be counted on to elevate his game in the playoffs.

It is also good that The Pats will have this game at home in their familiar surroundings at Gillette. I know our 12th Man at The Razor will do everything possible to help the defense and make things even harder for The Jags.

(Sean Brady/

Lets rock.


Thursday, January 05, 2006

Don't look now...


It's hard to believe the playoffs are already here. 4 Games to Glory.


Pats / Fish Recap

I awoke early on New Years Day. It had snowed the night before and I had to head outside and clear the driveway before I could pack up the car and drive down to my Dad's house to meet him for The Pats game later that day.

I was running a little behind thanks to the shoveling I had to do, but thankfully the roads were practically empty on this early Holiday Sunday Morning, so I was only about 15 minutes late.

I was pretty hungry by the time I got to my Dad's house, since I did not have time for breakfast before I left, and I would have loved to have stopped for a little snack at Dunkin's but we did not have time. We were meeting his friends in town and then we were heading to Foxboro in a caravan.

We got to the stadium a little after 10:00 AM and pulled into the surprisingly empty Gillette Stadium Parking lots. $35.00 is all it takes to get in. I was saying to my Dad that it looked like a lot of people were not going to show for the game, but he then told me that his buddies in the caravan who come to a lot of games had told him that the lots are almost never full. Interesting.

Once we got a good spot I immediately hopped out of the van, cracked a beer (I was dyin' for a roadie on the ride to the stadium) and started setting up for some tailgatin'. My Dad's old Dodge van, a.k.a. The Ultimate Tailgating Machine, is really, really cool. It's a conversion van and it's got a stove, a table, couches, even a small bathroom inside of it. We got the chili heating up on the stove and started setting up our table and grill. Once the grill was set up, we threw in the sausages and peppers and proceeded to enjoy the full-on Pats tailgating experience.

One of the guys that was with us had never been to a Pats game and he could not believe the setups some of the people had, with their grills and all the food that people brought with them. I kicked back in my Pats chair and warmed up with some hot chili and cold beer, listening to the Pats pre-game on my old transistor radio that I'd had since I was a kid.

We did the tailgate thing for a few hours and around noon started to get ready to head into the stadium so we did not miss the tribute to the 1985 AFC Champions. That '85 season was very special to both me and my Dad.

My Dad is a hard-core, old-school Pats fan. He does not follow any other teams. He could care less about baseball, (he's never even been to Fenway Park,) and has relatively no interest in hockey or basketball. He'll watch the Celts if they're in the playoffs, but thats about it. He only really cares about The Pats. He used to have seasons in the 70's and was in attendance at many 'memorable' games back then, including the Monday Nighter where somebody got stabbed in the parking lot.

Unfortunately, due to the over-the-top rowdiness (and stabbings) at Foxboro back then, my parents felt things were too unsafe at the stadium to bring me to any games during those days. Even though I never got to attend a game in my youth I still loved The Pats and by 1985, I was a seasoned and salty Pats fan.

My first 'Patriots Memories' were from 1976 and it's often been said that the '76 team could have gone all the way. Of course we all know what happened to that 1976 team, and, let me take this opportunity to say, once again, FUCK YOU BEN DRIETH.

That was my first real taste of being a Pats fan. To have success within reach and to come so tantalizingly close, but falling just short. We never gave up on The Pats though. Even in the down years, we never got off the band wagon. We'd be watching a game and my Dad would be yelling, "COME ON YOU BUMS!! GET EM, GET EM and I'd be there yelling right along with him.

After '76 I went through all the ups and downs with my Dad in following the team. I remember many games getting blacked out on the Boston channels because of attendance at Foxboro being too low and we'd tune the game in on channel 22 out of Springfield, MA. It was on a really fuzzy UHF channel and it was like watching a game through a snowstorm. You could hardly even see the game. We had this small brown box that sat on top of our furniture-sized TV set. The box was used to control the direction of the antenna on the roof. It had a circle in the middle that had the points of the compass on it and it had this white dial dial with a red arrow in the middle of the compass that you would turn to all the different compass points and try and fine tune the reception.

As you would turn the dial, it would point the antenna on the roof east, west, north, south. When the dial moved, the thing would make this loud 'ca-CHUNK' as the antennae would move around. Me and my Dad would dick around with that dang antennae, moving it back and forth, trying to fine tune the reception the whole game.

"Oh! Hold it stop it right there! Stop! STOP!! I think I see Grogan!"

I remember my Dad watching former Patriot Jim Plunkett winning those Superbowls while playing for the damn Oakland Raiders. He would just say things like, "He used to be a Patriot," and not much else. I could tell it really bugged the hell out of him to see the former Pats star winning it all with the god damn Raiders.

So, as you can imagine, after a decade of watching The Pats shooting themselves in the foot whenever the opportunity presented itself, when they went on their roll in 85 and eventually beat the Dolphins in what was at the time their personal house of horrors, the Orange Bowl, we were pretty excited about it. I still have the newspaper clippings of Coach Berry getting carried out of the stadium in triumph.

Back to the present, we arrived inside of Gillette just in time to hear Sully from Godsmack sing the National Anthem. That was pretty cool and I thought he did a great job. I'm a big fan of Godsmack so I was glad I did not miss Sully.

After Sully, the 85 team came out and we gave a big hand to each of the players and coaches as they were announced.

Once the Tribute ended, we headed up to our seats for the game. No sherpa or oxygen mask were necessary but we did bring the radio so we could hear Gil and Gino call the game along with a warm stadium blanket to help keep warm.

The fans around us were all cool. There were a few Miami fans here and there. They tried to make a few comments about the score during the game but comebacks like, "Heading down to watch your boys play golf next week?" along with a few well placed snowballs, pretty much quieted them right down.

There was one guy who was dressed in black and it turned out he was a stealth Fish fan. He was kind of bugging the people around us and the guy he was with, who was a Pats fan, seemed totally embarrassed.

"Dude, what's with your buddy? He's a fish fan?? Why'd ya bring that guy with you?"

"He's my cousin. I told him not to embarrass me."

"Oh man."

The Pats fan just shook his head, "Hey, what are ya gonna do"

The game itself turned out to be really fun and enjoyable, even though the starters got pulled early, nobody was bothered by it one bit. Everyone was cheering loudly to try and help out the D when they were on the field and rooting for the Offense when they were out there. The Pats did everything to win, except actually win, which I am convinced was intentional, and nobody minded one bit.

At half-time they had what I though was a very impressive ceremony that featured a platoon of soldiers who were re-enlisting. Everyone was very solemn and respectful as they took their Oaths and they got a huge cheer from the crowd when they finished. I was totally impressed by those guys.

After the game we headed back to the Ultimate Tailgate Machine for a few more snacks and beers while the traffic cleared out. There were some kids sitting on the huge piles of snow around the edges of the parking lots who were providing entertainment while trying to throw snowballs into a trash barrel.

A good time was had by all.

Tuesday, January 03, 2006

Non-Win for the Pats... with game pics!

Hi gang, sorry I have not had a chance to write about the Pats game on Sunday. I had a great time, even though the Pats did not win. Let's not call it a loss, lets just call it an intentional 'non-win'. The Pats 2nd and 3rd stringers gave the Miami #1's a good game and nearly sent the game into overtime at the end.

I wonder if Belichick instructed Cassel to throw high on purpose during the 2 point conversion attempt at the end of the game... I can just imagine Coach B's stoic voice in the headset: "Ok Matt, nice job. I think we've made our point. Now throw it out of the end-zone and hit the showers. I've got a playoff game to get ready for..."

I'll write more on the game later. I can tell you there will be no face-melting explosion stories. Sorry. In the meantime, enjoy the photo album that I made with pics from the game.

Wednesday, December 28, 2005

Which is better, 3rd or 4th seed?

All kinds of thoughts about the upcoming Pats game and wether the 3rd seed is better than the 4th seed...

I'm going to the game Sunday and want to see a win, but I won't mind if Belichick only has the starters in for the 1st quarter or so. I don't expect Belichick to play to lose, but if he only puts Brady and the rest of the starters in to keep them sharp, then pulls them once they've had a few quality drives, I'm fine with that. Treat it like a pre-season game. There's no bye week for these guys so this game should be used to keep guys from getting stale and then allow them to rest and avoid injury.

Nobody knows better than The Pats that the playoffs are a whole new realm of football. Take this week to catch your breath before it starts.

I have a feeling Cincy is not going to put up too much of a fight vs. K.C., meaning Pittsburgh cannot let up and make a mistake against a weak team in Detroit. No rest for Pittsburgh this weekend. They've got to clinch that playoff spot on their own. Cincy is not going to be much help.

My gut tells me The Pats get the #3 seed this weekend, without even trying too hard. Then again, Miami's new Head Coach, Lou Saban, will want to finish out his 1st season on a winning note and beating his Division Rival and the Defending Superbowl Champs would be a nice way to close out the season with a winning record. He may pull out all the stops for this one...

So with all that going on, the possibility for a playoff game vs Jacksonville still is there for The Pats. And how about Jacksonville? Is anybody getting more disrespected than these guys? Nobody in the press or in the NFL fan-base is giving them a chance. They are being looked at as an easy victory and are not even being considered when people think about teams moving to the next round. In the case of the Pats, people are talking like they don't even have to play Jacksonville. They are an afterthought before the game has even been played. People have been talking about a re-match with The Colts for 2 weeks. Pats fans should know, don't disrespect an opponent. It can come back to bite you.

So who is it better to face in the playoffs, Jacksonville or Pittsburgh? I still feel that we have a better chance of beating Jax, just based on their situation: warm weather team, QB returning from an injury and could be rusty, weak schedule... It certainly sounds more favorable than playing a more game-tested, cold weather team that is already familiar with the Pats in Pittsburgh.

If it happens that we end up playing against Pittsburgh in the 1st round, let me just say that while I think Pitt may be tougher than Jax, I still feel that we can win against The Steelers. I certainly am not afraid of playing Pittsburgh, and if we do have to play them, at least it will be on our own turf, not that horrible, injury inducing surface at obnoxious Heinz field.

The possibilities swirl...

The bottom line is that whatever happens, I will just be happy to be at the game this Sunday. I have no doubt The Pats will play to win. Like Belichick says, you can't control what's going to happen in the playoffs. Always play to win, and then take it from there.

My tickets for the game are way up high at The Razor. I'm not in the last row at the top of the stadium, but I'm pretty damn close. Doesn't matter. I'm going to be there. Temps are predicted to be in the 40s and it should be a good day for football.

Tailgate prep starts later in the week.


Tuesday, December 27, 2005

I'll be the 12th Man on Sunday...

My Dad was able to score some tix to the Pats game on Sunday from some guy with seasons who would rather stay home. I'll take em! The last time I was at a Pats game was the Miami 'Snow Fireworks' game.

It should be a good game and I am really looking forward to it. I am very interested to see who starts and for how long. Plus, I am excited for the tribute to the '85 AFC Champs.

I have to admit, I'm feeling somewhat conflicted over this game. On one hand, I obviously want to see them win, but in the big picture, does a win this weekend wind up hurting The Pats in the long run?

I have said that I think the 4th seed is the easier way to the Superbowl by playing Jacksonville and then if they win, The Colts. A win on Sunday gives The Pats a very good shot at landing the 3rd seed. A third seed means facing Pittsburgh and then, should they win, traveling to Denver. That is a tough road. Not impossible mind you, but tough, no doubt.

Either way, it will be difficult, so I guess there is no sense in spending a lot of time fretting over it. I can't not want them to win, and I'm sure the same can be doubly said for Belichick.


Monday, December 26, 2005

Pats / Jets MNF...

1st Half

Well here we are in the 'final' Monday Nite Foooballll game. Why are they making so much hoopla over this? It's still going to be on next year, it'll just be on ESPN instead... Who cares? Gil and Gino are on the radio as always for me, so whatev... Gil and Gino are way ahead of the TV right now which is a little strange. They usually adjust it to match up as the game goes on.


The Pats opened up the game nicely with a great looking opening drive for a TD. That was followed by a pass interception by Asante Samuel and things were looking good.

Unfortunately, things have not gone so well since then. Samuel suffered some sort of injury on the INT. Hopefully he is ok. Brady then got picked off by Ty Law who brought it back to the house for a TD.

Game tied, 7-7. You have to wonder what's going through Ty Law's head when he looks over at the AFC East Champs sideline. Was the money worth it for you Ty? How's 3-11 feel right now?

I am not being a very good '12th Man' tonight. I was a Christmas Cookie eating machine the last few days so I'm not all that good for jumping around and yelling right now. I'm still good for touchdown laps around the house though, so I'm not completely mailing it in...

Now we have Tedy Bruschi getting helped off the field. That is not good to see at all. They are driving him to the locker room on the golf cart. Oh no.

Technically this game counts, but in reality this game is absolutely meaningless in the big picture. In all honesty, I'm looking at this as a tune up game for the Pats. It's an opportunity for them to work on stuff and stay sharp. This game is not worth losing key members of our defense, or anybody for that matter...

Mid 2nd quarter:
The Pats put together another nice drive and another TD pass to Vrabel. That makes 2 for him in this game. Nice to see. Gil reports that Bruschi is out with some kind of leg injury and is getting x-rayed. Oyyyyyyy. Fuuuuck. Please be ok Tedy!!

Late 2nd:
The Pats have been pounding the ball on the ground. Guess Belichick wants his 'backs to get their playoff legs... and thats the 2 Min warning (my Gil Santos imitation there...)

Inside 2 min and the Pats are driving for another score. Troy "FOOTBALL PLAYER" Brown takes a Brady pass to the Jet 2 yard line. 1st and Goal, Pats... Dillon walks in. 21-7 Pats.

The Pats recover the ensuing kickoff. It touched a Jet and they did not pick it up. Free ball and The Pats capitalize. Taking over at the Jet 35. Time to run it up I think...

The Pats just ran the clock after being unable to get within Adam's FG range. No matter. One more score for The Pats in the 3rd and it will be time to start playing the backups.

2nd Half:
The Pats get the ball on the kickoff and drive effortlessly for a TD. 28-7 Pats. Calculate the amount of time left in the game, 20 min and change, and a 21 point lead for the Pats, and I think it's pretty safe to start getting the starters out of the game.

~10 min left in the 4th:
The Jets scored a TD to make it 28-14 but the clock continues to tick... Brady's still in there along with the rest of the starters. I guess Coach B does not like the time vs score ratio yet...

Side note: They keep showing all these nostalgic pieces from past MNF games... Do they think people don't know that ABC and ESPN are essentially the same thing?? Stupid.

The Pats tacked on a FG from Adam, making it 31-14. Good to see The Pats close out MNF in a blowout. I remember The Pats did not even have a Monday Nite game for years and years because people were so out of hand in Foxboro... Thank you Bob Kraft.

Only one more regular season game left. Damn. Where did the time go anyway?


Sunday, December 25, 2005

Playoffs coming into focus...

The AFC Playoff situation came into a little more focus today with Denver locking up the 2nd Seed and a bye week with their victory over Oakland and Jacksonville clinching a Wild-Card spot with their victory over Houston.

That leaves only a few somewhat unresolved situations in the AFC picture.

Pittsburgh has not locked up their playoff spot, but with Detroit on their schedule for the last game of the year, chances are very good that they will be in. At this point, The Steelers would have to have a complete meltdown and lose a home game to the 5-10 Lions to blow their playoff chances. Highly unlikely.

Meanwhile, showing a bit of inexperience (or immaturity depending on your inclination), Cincy blew their game against the Bills today, losing 37-27. Now the Bengals will go into Arrowhead next week to face a very good K.C. team that will be playing for its playoff life in an absolute must win situation. That will be a very tough game for Cincy.

I thought K.C. was all done but surprisingly, they knocked off San Diego today and kept their playoff hopes alive, though their chances of getting into the post-season are in critical condition at this point. K.C. needs a win and a Steeler loss. With Pittsburgh getting an easy opponent in Detroit next week, it's highly unlikely that K.C. will get in. However, if K.C defeats Cincy in their last gasp effort for a shot at the playoffs, the door will be open for The Pats to take the #3 seed with a win over Miami.

Of course, that scenareo is all predicated on The Pats winning their game on Monday Nite vs. The Jets.

The Pats should be able to win against The Jets without too much difficulty, but when facing off against a divisional opponent, I am always wary of putting a check next to the W column before the game is actually played.

I continue to find myself asking the question, would moving into the 3rd seed even benefit The Pats? I still tend to think the answer is no because that would mean the Pats would then face either The Steelers or, potentially, K.C. I'd rather face Jacksonville than either one of those teams.

Jacksonville is not to be taken lightly. They have beaten some good teams this year, with wins over Seattle, Cincy and Pittsburgh, but those wins were all early in the season. If you look at their schedule since their bye week, you'll see they had about as weak a schedule as you could ask for. When they went up against a high quality team, The Colts, The Jags made it somewhat competitive, but in the end could they not hang with the Big Boys.

The Jags play in a comfortable, warm weather environment and have had an incredibly easy schedule for the last few months. I think those two factors will leave Jacksonville unprepared to go into The Razor and face a team like the Patriots in their element with a playoff win on the line. For this reason, I'm hoping the playoff situation will remain unchanged, with The Pats keeping the #4 seed.

That Cincy / K.C game could be a big game next week in determining the final playoff picture...


Thursday, December 22, 2005

I guess this is just the week for bad things to happen...

Matt Light is now the 10th Patriot player on the IR this year. Not that this comes as a surprise, but it still sucks. It would have been nice to have Matt back for the playoffs.

On the subject of injuries, is there something wrong with my eyes or are there only 2 Patriots listed on the injury list this week? (Tom Brady, questionable and Matt Light, out.)

I don't usually talk about news regarding rival football teams, but the news that Wayne Chebret is retiring due to his head injuries is sad.

I have a lot of respect for Chebret. He burned the Pats and had me swearing up and down at the TV almost every time The Pats faced off against the Jets. Chebret was a guy that always came up with a big catch when it was needed. He pissed me off because it was always against my team, but the guy was good. Wayne Chebret was a football player, that is for sure. Too bad his career had to end on this note. Best of luck to you Wayne.

Condolences to the Dungy family...

I would like to offer my heart-felt condolences to Tony Dungy and his family. There are no words for the kind of tragedy that has befallen him. I can only offer my sympathy and say that I am truly sorry to hear the news about Dungy's son.

Here is the ESPN story for those who are new to the situation.

Pats Pro-Bowlers, Sox bowled over...

Like a gentle tap on the shoulder, reminding us who the real team we should be paying attention to this time of year is, The Patriots quietly announced that Tom Brady and Richard Seymour were selected for their 3rd and 4th Pro-Bowl, respecively yesterday.

While the Red Sox got caught with their pants around their ankles with the Johnny D fiasco, and then had a freakin' press conference to highlight it, The Pats just issued a press-release.

"Hi, everybody, hey in case you're interested, we've got the best QB and the best defensive lineman in the NFL on our team. They're heading to the Pro-Bowl again this year. Oh yeah, we also locked up the AFC East for the 3rd year straight, and are the first team in the salary cap era to make it to the playoffs following back-to-back Championships... just in case you're interested."

The Red Sox are like a fender-bender on the side of the highway, with all kinds of flashing lights and people running around, arms flailing, clogging up traffic while people slow down to gawk and stare. Meanwhile The Patriots just keep on rolling as if they are on rails, a well oiled machine that continues to pick up momentum. Yes, the Pats may hit a few pot holes here and there, but adjustments are always made and the momentum continues to grow.

That press-conference the Red Sox held yesterday put their ineptness out on full display for all to see while The Patriots quietly continued to show us how a 'state of the art' franchise operates.

It only makes me appreciate The Patriots even more.


Monday, December 19, 2005

4 Games to Glory, not 3 this year...

Remember folks, it's '4 Games to Glory' this year, not three.

I think its nice that all the fair-weather fans have suddenly found renewed confidence in The Pats, but what is with all the Pats / Colts rematch talk going on? Aren't we getting a little ahead of ourselves here? The Pats have to win the 1st round of the Playoffs before we can start talking about a potential Pats / Colts re-match.

Let's get back to the 'Belichick Way' and take it one game at a time.

The AFC Playoff scenarios are still unsettled. There is still a slim opportunity for The Pats to move up into the 3rd seed, depending on what happens with The Bengals, though I don't know if moving up from the 4th to the 3rd seed will really make that much of a difference or even be that helpful. It will depend on how the Wildcard spots settle out.

On a side note: I think it's great that The Bengals won their division. I feel genuinely happy for the Cincy fans who have not seen a playoff game in 15 years. Great job Marvin Lewis.

Right now, the rest of the season for the Playoff contenders looks like this:

Broncos, 11-3: Oakland, SD
Cincy, 11-3: Buffalo, KC
Jax, 10-4: Houston, Tenn
Pitt, 9-5: Cleveland, Detroit
SD, 9-5: KC, Denver

The Broncos and Cincy both have two tough games left on their schedule and are also vying for the remaining bye week spot in the playoffs. On top of that, they both have to go up against teams that are fighting for their playoff lives right now in SD and KC, although KC is pretty much done I think.

Realistically, the Pats have been eliminated from a chance at the bye and to move into the 3rd spot would be difficult. The Pats would have to win out, which is very possible, but Cincy would then have to lose out, which is very unlikely, with an easy opponent like Buffalo on their schedule next week.

At this point I think it's safe to say that it's either going to be Cincy or Denver getting the bye and the 3rd seed and The Pats getting the 4th seed. Not that it is a guarantee, anything can happen...

In the Wildcard race, Jacksonville has an incredibly easy schedule. I expect they will win out and wind up being the #1 Wildcard Seed. I will be shocked if Jax loses either of it's last two games.

Pittsburgh has a pretty easy schedule too, facing Cleveland and Detroit, though I think Cleveland and our old friend RAC could give them a tough game. The pressure will be on The Steelers because if they lose either game, that opens up the door for San Diego.

Poor San Diego. Playing in the league's toughest division, they now need to win the rest of their games just to have a chance at a playoff spot. That will be very tough with their last two games against KC and Denver. The curse of the NFL Schedule Maker. I guess there's something to be said in facing the most difficult teams early on, like The Pats did, though back in Sept I would not have considered ending the season against The Jets or Miami easy games either...

No matter how things shake out, when the playoffs start, The Pats will be up against some formidable opponents in the 1st round, but the Pats are showing the rest of the league that they are not a team to be taken lightly themselves. In a home game, with our team in Playoff form, I feel confident that the Pats can win against any of the current Wild Card hopefuls.

In a choice between Pittsburgh and Jacksonville, I think I'd rather face Jacksonville.

Pittsburgh seems to be a weakened team, but something about them makes me not want to face them. There's too much familiarity there and like Manning and The Colts, given enough chances, the Steelers are bound to get lucky and beat us eventually. There's too much voodoo in that match-up for me.

I think we have our best chance to win going up against Jacksonville. They are a good team and have the better record, but like the Colts, they also benefit from playing against two weak divisional teams twice a year. Jacksonville will be tough, but they are also a warm weather team with an iffy QB situation. I like our chances against them with Belichick on the sidelines of what will hopefully be a very cold, loud Razor.

Bottom line, whichever team winds up coming into the Razor, here's something for you to think about...

Fear this...

( photo)

Sunday, December 18, 2005

Go Bolts!

I'm sitting here working on Christmas cards (The 4th thing at Christmas that's such a pain to me...) and my wife put on the TV.

"Oh, you wanna watch some Football??"

"Ahhh. No." she says, as she switches to TLC 'What Not to Wear'.

"Ohhhh, Maaaaan," I say.

I get the 'puter and get a quick score check. Hey, the Bolts are beating Indy, 16-3. YAAAAHH.

"Hun. Can we just watch the 4th quarter of the Indy game, pleeeeeeezzze??" Doing my best 3 year old kid imitation...

"We'll see."

The very gay sounding guy on 'What Not to Wear' says, "Ugh. Your wardrobe looks like what you wore in the 7th grade..."

"Hey that kind of reminds me of you," the wife says.

"Humph," I humph.

"Though I think I've got most of that stuff cleared out at this point," she continues.

"Humph," I humph.

Now she's on the phone with her mother ragging on me about how I thought 'Patricia' would be a nice middle name for our daughter once she is born. Apparently she does not like the reasoning that Patricia has "Pat" as in "Pats", as in "Patriots", in the name...

Dang woman.

Score check: FUCK. Now its 16-10 Bolts. Come on you stupid Chargers!!!

Score check: The Hell?? The Colts just scored like 17 points in 5 min. Damn you TLC WHAT NOT TO WEAR I'm MISSING THE GAME!!

OK. TLC is finally over. 2:36 left, Bolts up 19-17. Come on you stupid Bolts!!! SHOTTENHIEMER!!! DONT SCREW THIS UP!


26-17 Bolts. 2:09 left in the game... Come on Bolts D!!! Hold em off! I wanna see that Peyton Manning Face.

Manning interception with 1:30 left. That's it. Uh-oh, Peyton is pouting on the sideline. Boo-hoo. Don't cry now Manning.

Thank you Bolts.

Denver won, so that wrecks The Pats chances for a bye I think. Oh well. We're in so that's all that counts.


Saturday, December 17, 2005

Squish the Fish, Berry the Bears...

It's sounding like the Patriots last regular season game, vs. the Dolphins, is shaping up to be quite an event.

Not only is Sully from Godsmack going to sing the National Anthem, but at half-time, The Patriots are going to have a tribute to the 1985 Patriots, who were the 1st Pats team to win a Conference Championship and get to the Superbowl.

I think it's great that the Kraft family holds these types of events to honor the great teams and players from The Patriots past. People always seem to want to bring up the bumbling aspect of the old Patriots but there is a lot of Patriots history there to be proud of too. It's good to be reminded of it.

I remember that '85 Championship run very well. Up until Superbowl 36, I considered that '85 AFC Conference Championship to be my greatest 'Sports Moment'. To go down to Miami, a place where the Pats had not won a game in something like 20 years, and smack around The Dolphins, who were the only team to defeat the Bears that year, was just an incredible feat. I remember Coach Raymond Berry getting carried off the field in victory. Whenever I think of that team, I don't think about the Superbowl 20 blowout, I think of that AFC Conference Championship victory.

I no longer have my 'Squish the Fish' or 'Berry the Bears' t-shirts, they kind of disintegrated from old age, but I do still have a Superbowl XX t-shirt. Amazingly, it still fits, though I never wear it anymore. I keep it safe in a drawer, along with the Superbowl 31 t-shirts, at the bottom of a stack of Superbowl 36, 38 and 39 Championship T-Shirts. By the way, I have room for more...


2nd Half Pats / Bucs...

I turned on that IM status thingy in case anyone wants to chat me up during The 2nd half of The Pats game.

For AIM and Yahoo messenger, my user name is mrbanw. For MSN and Google chat, my user name is my e-mail.

Pats / Bucs 3rd Quarter:
So far, the Pats D is continuing to go after The Bucs. Good to see. The O seems to be doing a nice job running the clock, but it would be nice to see them put together a sustained drive.

Whoa, scary punt return that was almost a TD for The Bucs if not for a penalty flag. Whew! Close call there... Now let's bring it D...

The Pats D has been relentless in this game, which is great to see. The offense has shown flashes, with Brady going to Givens on several impressive throws. Unfortunately, they have not strung together a drive yet. I think at this point though, as long as that clock keeps running, that's what we really want to see.

4th Quarter:
15 Football min to the AFC East Championship and the Playoffs...

The Pats just scored another TD with Dillon driving it in from inside the 5 to make it 28-0, Pats. Nice. As long as there is not some kind of total collapse on the Pats side, which I seriously doubt will happen, I think this one is pretty safely wrapped up with about 11 min to go... Of course, anything can happen during a game, so The Pats D needs to stay steady and keep the pressure on. I might be kicking back here, but The Pats can't let up...

Oh, did I mention the beer of the game is Wachusett Winterfest?

Under 10 min to go with this one well in hand... Bruuuuuuuusci just sacked Simms. Nice job Pats. Punt it Tampa.

4:00 left in the game. Brady has been going to Givens all day with some absolutely beautiful passes.

That's the 2 min warning. With a 28 - 0 lead, I think we can safely say this now: Congratulations to the New England Patriots, AFC East Champions!! 3 years in a row. Awesome. I love this team!


Pats / Bucs: 21-0 at the half...

The Pats looked great in their opening drive, marching straight down the field for a TD. After that, the Bux D stiffened, forcing several 3 and outs for The Pats.

Along the way however, The Bux made several critical errors during the 1st half, and the Patriots took full advantage, scoring a TD after getting the ball back on a roughing the punter penalty and then scoring another TD after a strip sack of the Buc's QB, putting the Pats up 21-0 going into halftime.

Things are looking like The Patriots that we have all grown to know so well, jumping all over mistakes by their opponents. Now the Pats need to turn up the heat. Don't let up off the gas on D and continue to go after Bucs QB, Chris Simms.

On offense, I expect lots of Clock Killin' with Dillon, Faulk and Pass. Brady has looked stellar so far in this game, despite a few close calls on passes that could have been interceptions if The Bucs cornerbacks had held onto the ball. Thankfully they have been unable to, so no harm done.

I must say, Brady has really been threading the needle on some of his passes so far. He's really looking good and seems to be having no problems that I can see moving around.

This is a FOX game so the graphics are totally over the top, as usual. I can't decide if the snow plow that goes across the top of the screen every now and then is kinda cute, or just annoying. It's not distracting me, so I guess it's ok.

30 min of football to free hats and t-shirts...


Thursday, December 15, 2005

Mind games...

Tom Brady is listed as questionable for this week's game against the Bucs and any opportunity the jackals in the press have had to get a glimpse of him moving around has been hampered, basically leaving them (and therefore, the rest of us as well) to guess how hurt Tom really is.

Is this just a little game Belichick is playing, to force Bucs Coach Jon Gruden to waste time during what is already a short week, preparing for two very different quarterback options in Tom Brady and Doug Flutie? Possibly... but I'll be saying a prayer to the Football Gods asking their good graces that Tom Brady is good to go on Saturday. I know Flutie is a revered figure around here, but I still stick to my original sentiments that the only time I want to see him in a game is for mop up duty, a-la last weeks Bills game.

I want to get the Pats playoffs berth locked in ASAP, then, depending on what plays out in the other playoff scenarios, we can let guys rest as needed. If there's no shot at a higher seed, I say it's ok to give guys a break over the last two games.

It's looking very unlikely that either Denver or Cincy will lose this week, playing The Bills and Detroit respectively. A win this weekend for Denver and Cincy will put both teams at 11 wins each, so the possibility of The Pats moving out of the #4 spot will be practically impossible, should that scenario play out... This is still the NFL, where anything can happen, so we won't know for sure till Monday, but that also means The Pats need to take care of business this weekend and get that playoff spot clinched.

And that's your Statement of the Obvious for today, my friends...


Wednesday, December 14, 2005

1 degree...

This morning when I went outside to start the car it was 1 degree Farenheight outside. One. Up a little farther north it was below zero. And it's not even January yet. Unbelievable. No sense bitching about it, that's what happens in winter.

I was hoping this ultra-cold snap might actually do us a favor and last through Saturday while the oh-so scary (not really) Tampa Bay Buccaneers are in town but it's looking like it's going to warm up and be in the 30's for the game.

Even though it won't be super cold for the game, temps in the 30's can still work in our favor.

30 degrees will be damn uncomfortable weather for the visitors coming from Florida, but after this week of arctic weather, it's going to feel like a heat-wave to The Patriots and their (hopefully) loud-mouthed fans.

While everybody else seems to be girding themselves for the worst against the admittedly tough opponent that is the Tampa Bay Bucs, as usual I have confidence in The Pats. There's free hats and t-shirts riding on this game Saturday, and The Pats don't lose free hat and t-shirt games, especially at home at The Razor.

If there is one cause for concern in my mind it is the state of Tom Brady's leg injury. He's listed as questionable and that's all we know. I saw a quick piece from Tom being interviewed at his locker, telling reporters that Belichick told him not to talk about his injury.

"That's what the boss says, and that's what I do,"

Works for me. Hope you're ok Tom.


Tuesday, December 13, 2005

The Pats blogger groundswell continues...

I was going through and cleaning out my links, removing the ones that are no longer being updated or that I just plain don't read anymore, when I realized that there are actually more Patriots Blogs listed in my links than there are Red Sox blogs. That really is great! Not that it is a competition or anything, and obviously, the amount of Red Sox blawgs out there beyond my short list of links far outnumbers the Pats blawgs.

Still, it's very cool to see the number of Pats blawgs continue to grow. I'm always happy to find a new Patriots blawgger out there on the interweb.

When I first started doing this site a little more than a year ago, there were only 2 other sites (that I was aware of anyway,) that wrote anything at all about The Pats, Cursed to First and The Patriot Act.

Now there are at least 9 Patriots bloggers out there who are dedicated to writing soley about The World Champs, and probably a bunch more that I'm not even aware of. And I should not forget to mention there are a lot of sites like this one, where the writers focus on The Pats but also write about The Sox, Bruins and Celts, among other things...

I guess the point of all this is just to say, if you are looking for some good home-grown Pats talk, definitely check out some of the Pats blogs listed over in my Sports Links and feel free to let me know if I am missing any!

Sunday, December 11, 2005

Pats win but don't clinch East...

The Pats got a nice win against a floundering Buffalo Bills team today, setting a team record for 1st downs in a single game along the way. There was a scary moment when Tom Brady injured his leg or ankle while running for a Touchdown. It was not pleasant to see him limping noticeably during several plays following the injury but as the game wore on, the limp seemed to subside, thankfully.

Hopefully Tom is fine and there will be no lingering side effects from the injury. Statements of the obvious, that is my forte, folks.

As if Tom's injury was not bad enough, there were several plays where our cornerbacks were still lying on the ground at the end, getting help from the trainers. Our secondary seems to be improving every week, so now is not the time for us to loose another guy back there. It appeared that all the corners and safeties made it through the game in one peice, once again, thankfully.

The bad news is that San Diego apparently did not get the message that they were supposed to beat Miami today, so The Pats did not clinch the AFC East. Miami is showing signs of life as the season winds down and they now have a very easy schedule ahead of them, facing The Jets and Titans before finishing up the season against The Pats.

The Pats have a more difficult road with Tampa Bay on Saturday, and then The Jets before facing Miami. Lets hope for some nice cold weather on Saturday and some very loud voices from the lucky people who have tickets to the game.

At this point, a Pats win or a Miami loss clinches it for The Patriots. Personally, I can live without the 'drama' of the AFC East potentially coming down to the final game of the season vs. Miami. Let's just take care of business and get it done on Saturday against Tampa. If things turn out right, there'll be free hats and t-shirts at the end.


Friday, December 09, 2005

Thank you, Jim Lazar...

Hey I actually read an article about the Pats that was positive! How about that? Despite the Pats problems this year, they are in a good position for the playoffs and hopefully this weekend will lock up their AFC East Championship and at a minimum, a 4th seed and a home game in the post season.

Admission time. In the article, Lazar mentions the period a few years ago when the Pats were looking at Tom Donahoe as a potential GM candidate. I am ashamed to admit this, but at the time, I was one of those stupid people who wanted to see Donahoe and whoever was the Coach of Carolina to come in and run The Pats, not Belichick.

As I type this, I can't even remember who was coaching Carolina back then, if that doesn't tell you something. Oh, the shame! It's painful to imagine what might have happened. Get out of my head you terrible thought! Thankfully for all of us, Bob Kraft is smarter than me, much smarter. Feel free to give me an interweb punch in the arm for being so dumb back then. OW!

Oh and by the way, Eric Moulds, I'd like to send a big thank you out to you too! I appreciate your complaints last weekend, as does the Patriots secondary I am sure. As Richard Seymour said:

“He’s one of the best receivers in the NFL...He’s a guy, especially the last couple of times we’ve played them, who’s put up some pretty big numbers. We’re definitely not complaining about him not being in the lineup.”

This weekend's game is not an automatic win for The Pats. The Bills are always very tough at home, but the loss of Moulds is a big weapon removed from the Bills arsenal. We'll take it.

We'll also take Tejada for Manny, but I would not get my hopes up... It seems like every year there's always a great big carrot that gets dangled before Red Sox Nation's eyes during the off season, and I have a feeling this could be it. I'd love to be wrong again though...


Monday, December 05, 2005

Taking care of business

The Pats continued to position themselves for the Playoffs and got a nice win vs. The Jets yesterday. The offense saw the return of Dillon, Faulk and Givens, all of whom made substantial contributions to the win after a lot of time off due to, what else, injury. It was great to see those guys back out there. I had almost forgotten what the 'real' Patriots offense actually looked like.

Games like yesterday's are good for these guys coming back from injury. It will help to get them back into game condition. I'm sure many people will be going on today about how The Pats didn't score enough points and how they defeated a weak team, with a terrible record, blah, blah, blah. Like it doesn't count or something. Whateva. All I care about is that it's a win that gets us one step closer to the playoffs.

With this win, The Pats are now in position to clinch a playoff berth next week. If The Pats beat Buffalo and Miami loses to San Diego, The Pats are in.

It is kind of a sad state of affairs right now in the AFC East, formerly the Toughest Division in Football. Hey, it's not The Pats fault the rest of the AFC East sucks. I like to think of it as a small token from The Football Gods to make up for the ridiculous number of injuries the Pats have endured this year.

I have to say, I'm a little bit annoyed about some of the Pats talk I've heard and read about lately, with people calling this a 'lost' season, a dissapointment and other foolish talk.

I think Richard Seymour may be right. I think some people around here have short memories or maybe are too spoiled by the last 2 years. People seem to have forgotten that up until just the last few years, the Patriots *best* record, in their entire history, was 11-5. 11-5 people. I know this is going to shock some folks, but The Patriots are not going to go 12-4 or 14-2 every single year.

If the Pats go 11-5 or even 10-6 and make the playoffs, you're going to tell me that it's a disappointment? Sorry, but I have to disagree, especially when you consider what The Pats have faced this year with injuries and the difficulty of their schedule.

There is still a lot to play for here folks. Unless The Pats completely fall apart over the next 4 games, which frankly, I don't think they will, they will get, at worst, the #4 seed in the playoffs and a home game. As we saw from this weekend's results, with K.C. knocking off Denver, Cincy taking out The Steelers and Miami defeating The Bills, anything can happen in these last few games. The #3 seed is not locked up yet and there is even an outside chance at the #2 seed for The Pats if things fall into place.

11-5 has clinched a first round bye week in the past. Nothing to play for? Ride it out? Insane. I think a higher seed in the playoffs counts as something to play for.

If you look at the AFC Standings, The Pats are 2 games back of Denver and Cincy right now. Denver has Baltimore, Buffalo, Oakland and San Diego. Cincy has Cleveland, Detroit, Buffalo and Kansas City. Anything can happen.

The other thing I have heard, from 'expert analyst' and fair-weather fan alike, is that even if the The Pats make the Playoffs, they don't have a chance to win. I've actually heard a few people suggest that it would be better for The Pats to miss the playoffs altogether, so that Tom Brady's playoff record will remain untarnished. WHAT?? I almost don't know what to say to that but I have a feeling if you were to ask Brady, he would rather make the playoffs and take his chances with his record...

The Pats didn't have a chance against the Rams in Superbowl 36 either as I recall. Or, for those who still don't want to believe in the Pats Playoff chances and want to go back a few years, maybe you should go check out the '85 Pats, a Wildcard team that won 3 road games to get to The Superbowl, including an AFC Championship against it's nemesis The Dolphins, in a stadium that had been the Patriots House of Horrors for decades.

To summarize, all the Patriots doubters out there can get the fuck off my bandwagon. Feel free to go root for Indy.


Sunday, December 04, 2005

It's beginning to look a lot like a good day for Football

Today is a good day for Football. Its cold and kinda snowy out, which is good football watchin' and playin' weather. The Christmas Tree is all lit up and decorated, I've got a good fire going in the fireplace and I got almost all my chores done yesterday. Now it's time to kick back, relax with a cool one and watch some winter wonderland Foxboro football.

Like I said, this day of football pleasure is made possible by the work accomplished on Saturday.

Yesterday I... went out with the Fam, got a Christmas Tree, tried to put it up in our broken tree stand, had a hissy fit because the tree stand was not holding up the tree, broke the stand into several pieces, waited while my wife went out and got a new tree stand, put up the tree, vacuumed up the pine needles, went outside and hung the icicle lights on the roof, went to plug it in and realized I had put them up backwards and the plug was at the wrong end, remained calm, took the whole thing down, remained (mostly) calm, uttered the F-Word a few times, put the icicle lights back up on the roof, (the right way this time), spit into the cold wind that almost knocked me off the ladder a few times, gave the finger to Mother Nature just to show her, went back inside, plugged in the Christmas Tree lights, tried to figure out why only half of a strand was lighting up, shook the strand vigorously until it lit up and put the lights on the Christmas tree.

Now, it's Football Time.


Patriot nightmare....

My friend's Mom walked into the room. "Your Father just called and you're not going to be happy," she said to me.

"What. Don't tell me they lost..."

"Yes. Sorry."

"How can that be, they were up 44-3!"

As my friend's Mom started to offer an explanation, I thought to myself, 'What am I doing here? Why am I not watching the football game at my own house?'

At that point. I woke up. It was Sunday morning and the game had not even started yet. Whew. Just a bad dream!

The Patriots still have a couple impressive streaks going. Tom Brady had a terrible game last week. He usually follows up his bad games with exceptional performances. The Pats have not lost 2 games in a row in a very long time. Let's hope both of these trends continue this afternoon.

4:00 game, yeah baby.


Friday, December 02, 2005

Godsmack + Patriots...

Ok, most people probably won't find this interesting, but I saw this while looking around on Godsmack's website for news about the new record they're working on.

It seems that Sully is going to sing the National Anthem at the Pats / Fish game on January 1st. Cool.

I also see that George Strait and Skynyrd are both coming to Worcester in Jan. Cool.

Tickets for these shows are kinda pricey tho...

Time for some happy returns?

In checking this week's injury report, its looking hopeful that Tom Brady may have a few more options to work with this weekend against The Jets. There's a good chance at a return to the field of play for Corey Dillon, Kevin Faulk and if we're extra lucky, David Givens.

Whew. Let's hope it happens because these guys can't come back soon enough if you ask me. If there were ever a time when we needed to start getting some of our number one guys back and healthy, this is it. December is here and it's time to make a run for the playoffs.

Heath Evans and Patrick Pass did an admirable job holding things together in Dillon and Faulk's absence. Evans in particular was a pleasant surprise. Maybe he's no Corey Dillon, but he got the job done when we needed it. Even when Dillon and Faulk eventually return, hopefully this weekend, I'm sure it won't be the last we will see of either Evans or Pass. Their presence will give The Patriots a formidable stable of running back options and they will provide needed relief to Corey Dillon and Kevin Faulk until they are back in game shape. As we head into the colder months, I'll be hoping the running game will take a big leap forward with all four of these players available to The Pats.

As we look forward to the Jets this weekend, don't let their 2-9 record fool you. AFC East opponents are always tough so you can just throw the records away for all of these divisional games that lie before us. The Jets will be out to show a little pride and you can bet they will do their best to try to knock The reigning Superbowl Champs down another notch.

This will be the first time The Pats will have to face off against Ty Law this year. Law has been an overall disappointment for the Jets. Despite his claims that he was fully recovered from his foot injury, the injury has continued to be a problem and has hampered him all year.

Looks like The Pats knew what they were doing when they did not meet his overpriced salary demands last off-season. Of course we could have used him in our backfield this season but hindsight is always 20/20. After last year's injuries to our defensive back-field the Pats were extra-stocked in that department heading into the season. Who could have known The Pats would suffer another ravaging amount of injuries to their secondary once again? It's nuts.

It's been speculated that The Jets will let Ty go after this season. Maybe the Pats will have a shot to bring him back at a discount next year. We'll see. First we've got a lot more Football in front of us so lets enjoy it while it's here.

Despite the problems in our secondary, The Pats red-zone defense has shown a lot of improvement over the past few weeks. Lets hope an improving defense along with the return of some of our offensive starters can get the Pats Playoffs run kick-started.

I have a feeling The Pats may have a few tricks left up their sleeves. I'm hoping you'll see us surprise a few people as we make a push for the Playoffs.

Tuesday, November 29, 2005

Damn those Colts...

It was a very rare occasion, but last night, I was rooting for The Steelers. I almost always root against the Steelers but since they were playing Peyton 'Wonder Boy' Manning and The Colts last night, I had to root for them to win. Unfortunately they did not come through. Not even close. 26-7, Colts.

Ok. I'll admit it, soft schedule or no, The Colts are the class of the NFL right now. (Yes, that hurt). Now, can somebody please beat these guys? Damn! If Manning goes 16-0 I might just puke, so somebody needs to notch an X in the Loss column for the Colts.

It's not going to happen this week, unless Tennessee pulls off a miracle, in other words, it's not going to happen this week.

The Colts have still got to face Jacksonville, San Diego and Seattle, so there is hope. I'm thinking it will be Jacksonville that finally ends the streak and pops the corks from the champagne bottles down in Miami.

For the record, and I have talked about this before, I generally don't dislike the Colts. What I dislike is the anointing of Peyton Manning as the greatest quarterback to ever walk the earth when the guy has done JACK SHIT when it has counted.

Don't talk to me about his regular season accomplishments. What's his playoff record since he entered the league in '98? End of discussion. So can we please stop bowing down to this guy until he actually wins something besides his own division?

By the way, no matter what their regular season record turns out to be, The Colts will be upset in the playoffs this year. I can feel it in my gut. In the meantime, we've still got to put up with Manning, The Colts and their damn undefeated record.

You know, I just can't help but think that none of this would be happening if we had The Intimidator patrolling our defensive backfield. God-damm I miss Rodney Harrison. Fuck I wish he were around to show Manning who's the boss. Damn.

(Metrowest Daily News)

Monday, November 28, 2005

Playoff confusion...

Though I am a little embarassed to admit it, ever since the NFL re-aligned the divisions, I still get confused every year trying to figure out which teams will get the bye week and how many wild-card teams there will be for NFL Playoffs. You'd think I'd know it by now since the re-alignment was several years ago, but it just has not sunk into my thick head yet.

This weekend my friend and I were talking about playoff scenarios and I was asking, "So only 1 team gets the bye, and there's only one wildcard now, right? I still can't remember!"

"Ummmmm. I don't know... I can't remember either!"

What a couple of dumb-asses.

Here's a little cheat sheet for those of us who are NFL playoffs challenged. Now there is no need to suffer the embarrassment of NFL Playoffs confusion ever again.

This year, you will look really smart at all the holiday parties when some dumb-ass like me comes up to ask you what happens and who goes where once the NFL playoffs start. Chicks will be impressed and you may even get laid. Then again, if you're wasting your time here, maybe not, but good luck with that anyway!

There are 4 division winners (I knew that. I'm not that dumb) and 2 wild-card teams. The seeding for the 1st round is:

1. The division champion with the best record. (BYE)
2. The division champion with the second-best record. (BYE)
3. The division champion with the third-best record. (Hosts Wild Card #2)
4. The division champion with the fourth-best record. (Hosts Wild Card #1)

See? That's not so hard now, is it?


Sunday, November 27, 2005

Long and short of it...

I had written earlier that if the Pats played a clean game, they'd have a good shot at beating Kansas City at home in Arrowhead Stadium. Unfortunately, The Pats and Tom Brady in particular did not play a clean game, giving up 4 turn-overs on interceptions which K.C. twice converted into points.

Brady was off-target all day, with throws flying high of his receivers outstretched hands on several occasions, limiting the offense's effectiveness and sending Pats defense back out onto the field after too many quick 3 and outs.

In Brady's defense, a couple of his interceptions were balls that bounced off of his intended receivers and fell into the arms of a waiting defender. Unfortunately, that does not nullify the turnover or mean that the defense has to give the ball back.

If there was any bright spot in today's game, it was that the Patriots defense was able to hold K.C. to just a field goal after twice driving to inside the Patriots 5 yard line and once from inside the 15. If it were not for this, the game would have been a total blow-out before half-time. The defense actually rose to the occasion throughout the game and somehow managed to keep the Pats within striking distance all day.

The Pats offense showed some fortitude as well to claw back to within 10 points. There was a chance at a 4th quarter comeback but two Brady interceptions late in the game nullified the opportunity and The Pats fell short, 26-16. Damn.

That leaves the Pats at 6-5. With Buffalo losing today, they still hold the edge in the AFC East. Incredibly, next week will be December, with only 5 games remaining on the schedule. Where did this year's football season go? Time has really flown and it feels like this season has been a blur. It seems like it was only last week the leaves were changing and the air was just getting that crisp fall feeling. Of course then it started raining and didn't let up for like a month straight before it promptly began to snow. Maybe that's why it feels like we missed Fall, but I digress...

Here's what's ahead:

12/4 vs NJ Jets 4:15 PM
12/11 @ Buffalo Bills 1:00 PM
12/17 vs TB Bucs 1:30 PM
12/26 @ NJ Jets 9:00 PM
1/1 vs Miami Fish 1:00 PM

First on the list is The Jets. Despite The Jets horrendous record, don't put it past them to put up a good fight.

The Pats need to have laser focus for these upcoming games because a playoff shot is riding on the results. This is the start of the critical time in the Pats schedule. Thankfully we are playing two warm weather teams in the December months. This plays to our advantage. To win the AFC East Title, these are the 'must win' games.


Saturday, November 26, 2005

K.C. concerns...

This upcoming K.C. game has me a tad nervous. Last week I joked about Bill Belichick listing himself as questionable on the Patriots injury list. Now here it is a week later, and due to the unfortunate death of his father, Belichick has had to hand the reigns over to Dante Scarnecchia for this weeks game preparations.

I don't want to sound callous, because my heart goes out to Belichick for his loss, but from a Patriots perspective, I have to wonder how his absence is going to affect the team's overall readiness for this weeks opponent.

Things should be ok. The Patriots are a veteran team and Coach Scar has been around the block enough times to know what it takes to prepare a team for a game. Plus, this will not be the first time Coach Scar has had to temporarily step into the Head Coach's shoes. He has been here before. Hopefully, The Pats won't miss a beat this week.

Despite a devastatingly personal loss, Coach B will be back on the sidelines on Sunday and that really shows what kind of guts and heart Coach B has. It takes more than a week to recover from this type of thing and I'm sure it will still be a difficult time for him emotionally. From a purely personal perspective, I hope Belichick is doing ok. Hopefully once Sunday arrives, the focus on the game itself will provide Belichick with some respite from any emotional turmoil he may be dealing with. Patriot Nation is behind you Coach.

From an injury perspective, we may finally start to see some guys coming back this week. This is a a good thing to see as we head into an extremely tough environment. Arrowhead stadium is known throughout the NFL as one of the toughest places to play for any opponent. Arrowhead has always been especially difficult for The Pats. Until last year, The Patriots had not won a game in Arrowhead in over 40 years.

Like The Pats, The Chiefs are a 6-4 team, hoping to kick off a solid run towards the playoffs. Unlike The Pats however, it will be much harder for The Chiefs to make the post-season, as they play in what is arguably the toughest division in the league. It is unlikely that they will be able to unseat Denver for the AFC West crown, but if they are to have a shot, games like this Sunday's match with The Patriots are 'must win' games for The Chiefs. This will give them a little extra motivation, as if playing the defending Super Bowl Champs at home is not enough.

Thankfully, The Pats do have some advantages going into this one. The Chiefs have had trouble stopping the pass this year while Tom Brady is among the league leaders in passing yardage. Hopefully this is an area where Brady will be able to take advantage.

The Pats have been able to string together a decent running game the last few weeks using the pleasant surprise that is Heath Evans. Patrick Pass has made solid contributions to the run game as well, when it is on the field. Additionally, there's a chance we could see Kevin Faulk back this week. If the Pats can get any semblance of a running game going to compliment the passing game, it will take the K.C. 12th man out of the game. The potential is there for it to be a good day for The Pats offense.

On defense, things do not look very easy. The Chiefs lost Priest Holmes to injury this year but have not missed a beat with RB Larry Johnson in his place. Stopping the run will be the key to this game and The Pats run defense has been improving week to week. Hopefully we will see that trend continue.

The secondary will finally get somewhat of a break this week. I say 'somewhat' because they still face a potent passing attack led by a dangerous combo in Quarterback Trent Green and Tight End Tony Gonzalez. After Gonzalez however, the Chiefs receiving corps fall off a bit, but going against New England's depleted, though steadily improving secondary, that face-off is almost a wash.

I have a feeling it will be the team that plays the cleanest game coming out on top this week. If The Patriots can run an efficient offense and not shoot themselves in the foot with penalties or turnovers, they should be ok. The defense needs to put pressure Green and try to limit Larry Johnson's running attack.

If you are looking for any other statements of the obvious, let me know. I am here for you, my friends.


Sunday, November 20, 2005

Manning continues to annoy. Colts win shootout...

Once the Pats game ended today, I switched over to the Colts / Bengals match-up. This was a game that turned out to be a shootout, with both teams moving up and down the field almost at will.

Unfortunately, The Bengals came up just short and were not able to knock the Colts off of their lofty perch. They remain undefeated at 10-0 and become more and more annoying and aggravating to watch each week.

With Manning back there gyrating and flailing around with all his signals and calls and nonsense, I can't help but ask the Football Gods to allow someone on the defense to lay a bone jarring hit on him. I never want to see a player get hurt, but seeing Manning get hit with a good, hard, blind-sided sack would be nice, especially if it were followed by a fumble that gets recovered by the defense and returned for a touchdown... Unfortunately, the Football Gods were not willing to provide such pleasures to Manning-Hater Nation today.

At least the Colts have to play a few tough teams now. They've got the Steelers, Titans, Jags, Chargers and Seahawks ahead of them on the schedule before they touch down for a nice easy landing to finish off the season with what will probably be a cakewalk against Arizona.

Although any team can win on any given Sunday, I don't see the Titans or Cardinals ending the Colts win streak. The Jags played Indy tough in the first meeting. They are a team that could do it, but honestly I don't see it happening. You have to point to The Steelers, Chargers and Seahawks games as potential unbeaten-streak ending games. Let's hope... because it's starting to get a little sickening.

As I wonder about the possibilities of the Colts unbeaten streak coming to an end, I can't help but wonder if the Football Gods could potentially have bigger things in mind, like allowing The Colts to actually go undefeated in the regular season, only to be beaten in the playoffs. Ooooooh. Now that would sting wouldn't it? You know what, even I'm not mean enough to wish that kind of pain on Indy's fans... Let's just hope they lose a game, somewhere along the line, k?

2 in a row, here we go...

Before I say anything else, I'd like to extend my condolences to Bill Belichick and his family.

Coach Belichick's father, Steve Belichick, passed away last night.

Considering he just got the news about his father's passing last night, I am amazed and impressed at Coach Belichick's inner strength. I would have to imagine it was extremely difficult for him to focus on the game today considering what he must have been going through emotionally.

Thankfully, The Pats got a win today, beating The Saints 24-17 and winning 2 in a row for the first time all season.

Although I thought the overall play of the defense was much better than last week, they still allowed the game to remain interesting right to the very end.

With the Pats up by a touchdown, The Saints drove down the field in the closing minutes and got to just outside The Pats 20 yard line. Eugene Wilson finally put an end to the stress excitement when he intercepted an Aaron Brooks pass to Joe Horn in the end-zone. Whew. Game over. Thank you.

With Buffalo, The Jets and Miami all losing today, this win gives the Pats a little breathing room as they separate from the rest of the pack a little in the AFC East. They will probably need it as they head to a very hostile environment next week in Arrowhead stadium.

The Chiefs remain a dangerous team, despite the loss of Priest Holmes. Next week's match up is certainly a winnable game for The Pats, but it will definitely be a challenge. This next game will be a good test for The Pats and will help to harden them for a run at the playoffs.

Wednesday, November 16, 2005


Patriot Head Coach Bill Belichick has listed himself as 'Questionable' for this week's game against the New Orleans Saints.

"Despite having a wicked headache from dealing with all the injuries to the team, I should be out there on Sunday," Belichick said.

Belichick was also listed as having a 'tweaked thumb'. The injury appears to have been caused by over use of the remote control while watching a seemingly unending number game tapes highlighting bottom of the barrel free agent safeties, corners, o-linemen, d-linemen, receivers, running backs and fullbacks, all of whom are potential candidates to fill the holes left by the insane amount of injuries to his team.

After watching almost his entire defensive backfield get placed on IR this season, Coach Belichick was asked if he might have to suit up and spend some time at saftey or cornerback himself during this weeks game. Belichick stoically replied, "No Comment".

Koppen and Gay are the latest to go down on IR. Seriously, will it ever end? NO MORE INJURIES!!

This is nuts!!


Sunday, November 13, 2005

Pats grind it out against Miami...

The Pats ground out a nice win against the Miami Dolphins today. It may not have been pretty, but it was a win and I'll take it. And how about Heath Evans coming in for Corey Dillon? That guy was not to be stopped and was bowling over defenders. I was impressed with him!

Miami is never an easy place for The Patriots so for the walking wounded to go down there and get a win is great to see. I think this win helps the team emotionally. I get the feeling a lot of the guys are looking around the locker room and wondering what the hell is going on with their team.

The rag-tag secondary got burned plenty today. Things are getting desperate again, Troy Brown made his first appearance on defense this year, but at the same time, when the game was on the line the secondary buckled down and got it done in the end, holding the Fish to 4 and out from inside the Pats 10 and preventing a game tying touchdown.

The bottom line is that The Pats escaped Miami with the win and moved up to take sole possession of the AFC East.

Ok, the AFC East is not exactly the 'toughest division in football' anymore. In fact, if it were not my own team's division, I'd say it's kind of a joke, with only one team, The Patriots, owning a winning record. That being said, you're not going to hear me complain about it. We're still on track for a playoff spot and that's what counts.

Next week it's the Saints at The Razor. Hope it's chilly. I hate the cold but for The Pats, I am willing to sacrifice.


Saturday, November 12, 2005

Some new Pats Blogs to check out!

Hello fellow surfers of the internets!

Sorry my posts have become so sporadic lately. Real life has been cutting into my blawg writing time the last few weeks. I'm sure it's been putting a big kink in your blog surfing experience but don't fret, I've found a couple really cool Pats blogs for you to check out and read in the absence of anything worthwhile here.

See, I'm always lookin' out for you!

I'm always on the lookout for new Patriots blogs and I found both of these the other day. I think they're both kick ass sites that would be well worth your time to check out!

Land of Patriots

Patriots Fanatic

It's great to see the list of Patriots bloggers continue to grow. I knew there were more voices from Patriot Nation out there!

Thursday, November 03, 2005

Let's talk Colts...

Here is the Colts season results so far.

1 9/11 @ Baltimore Ravens W 24 - 7 - (Ravens currently have a losing record)
2 9/18 JACKSONVILLE JAGUARS W 10 - 3 (Currently have a winning record)
3 9/25 CLEVELAND BROWNS W 13 - 6 - (Browns currently have a losing record)
4 10/2 @ Tennessee Titans W 31 - 10 - (Titans currently have a losing record)
5 10/9 @ San Francisco 49ers W 28 - 3 - (Niners currently have a losing record)
6 10/17 ST. LOUIS RAMS W 45 - 28 - (Currently .500)
7 10/23 @ Houston Texans W 38 - 20 - (Houston currently has a losing record)
8 10/30 BYE

Hmmm. Undefeated. Ok, it's impressive, though the Colts schedule is not exactly like The Pats schedule so far...

1 9/8 W vs Raiders 30-20 (Oakland Currently has a losing record)
2 9/18 L @ Carolina 27-17 (Panthers have a winning record, tied for Div lead)
3 9/25 W @ Pittsburgh 23-20 (Pitt has a winning record, 2nd in Div)
4 10/2 L vs Chargers 41-17 (Chargers currently have a .500 record)
5 10/9 W @ Atlanta 31-28 (Dirty Birds currently have a winning record, tied for Div lead)
6 10/16 L @ Denver 28-20 (Horses currently have a winning record, lead AFC West, toughest div in NFL)
7 10/23 Bye
8 10/30 W vs Bills 21-16 (Buffalo currently has a losing record)

Yes the Colts are undefeated, but I think I see some disparity in the quality of teams The Pats and Colts have faced so far this year.

Do you see an stand-out teams on the Colts list? The Jags are the only team jumping out at me as a 'quality' team. (Sorry RAC). Maybe that's because The Jags are the only team The Colts have faced that have a winning record at 4-3.

I think you can see where I'm going with this. Yes, the Colts are coming in undefeated, flying high-again, while the Pats are 4-3, riddled with injuries and everyone in Patriot Nation is wondering 'could this be Peyton's chance to finally win a game at The Razor'? Well, I will admit to wondering that myself. It could very well happen. This is as good a chance as he's had since 2001. Oh wait. 2001... What happened in 2001?

Remember this?

2001 Patriots:
9/9 17-23 L at Cincinnati
9/23 3-10 L vs N.Y. Jets

(Holy shit the Pats are 0-2 and Peyton Manning and The Colts are next. Oh my god! What will happen?! We are doomed!)

9/30 44-13 W vs Indianapolis

Maybe this is Manning's best shot to get a win at The Razor in forevah, but something in my gut tells me The Pats get it done on Monday night... Plus, The Football Gods don't like an undefeated team.


Sunday, October 30, 2005

Pats / Bills 2nd Half: Pats D comes alive...

The Pats D has come alive in the 2nd, generating some turnovers and finally putting decent pressure on the Bills. The offense has taken advantage and made the Bills pay with touchdowns.

Can I just say, no matter how this game turns out, how fucking great is it to have Tedy Bruschi on the field of play again? It's just fantastic and he's had a great night. Full Tilt, Full Fucking Time. Effin' A Cotton, EFFIN - A.

So, it's the 2 min warning and The Pats just stopped da Bills on 4th down. This 4th quarter has been exciting. With 2 min left, The Pats have 1 time out, as do the Bills. The Patriots need to grind out a 1st down, maybe even 2 to be able to put in Tom Brady's favorite play, (kneeling on the ball and letting the clock wind down.)

Well, the Patriots don't get the damn 1st down, so they'll have to hold on for 21 seconds...

The Bills screwed up the punt [NICE] and wasted a bunch of time running around... 3 seconds left to victory...


Pats win 21-16 and improve to 4-3, alone atop the AFC East. A great win. Bruschi looked like a muther-effing super hero action figure out there on the field. 30 regular season games without losing 2 games straight.

The Colts had this week off and are coming into Foxboro next week undefeated. I don't like that Indy is undefeated. Time to take care of that I think...


Pats vs Buffalo: 1st Half

2 things are jumping out at me in the 1st half: penalties and poor tackling.

The Pats are not sticking guys, wrapping them up and bringing them down. They are slamming into guys and then bouncing off, allowing their opponents to stay on their feet.

The 2nd problem is being caused by penalties. There have been way too many. To make things worse, this officiating crew seems to be very quick to toss the flag.

This effing injury nightmare continues to eat up quality players. Patrick Pass was ripping through the Bills defense early in the game, until he tweaked his hammie, return: questionable. Un-be-fucking-livable...

Despite all this [I'm using that phrase way too much], The Pats are only down by 3 at the 2:00 Warning.

Lets hope things improve in the last 2 min and we can get a score up on the board before the half.

How do we feel about Tedy Bruschi getting back on the field?

Whooooooaaaaaaaaa YEAH!!

Anybody that has seen the Patriots 3 Games to Glory DVDs will recognize that familiar scene that takes place at the end of every Patriots game, where the team gathers around Tedy and he asks them, "How do we feel about a vic-tor-ie??!" WHOAAAAAAH YEAH!! The TEAM answers.

(My personal favorite chant: "How do we feel about free t-shirts?" [WHOOAAAA YEAH!!])

Ok. Yes. I'm having fun with the 'whoa yeahs'!

So as the Patriots begin their second half of the season, Tedy will be back on the field tonight as the team faces off against the Buffalo Bills. His return, along with Richard Seymour, will make a huge difference in so many ways to this defense. Even if neither player is at 100%, the experience and the ability to make plays that they bring on the field is huge.

One of the main problems that has plagued the Patriots so far this year has been a lack of cohesion on D. There has been confusion with the linebackers, cornerbacks and safetys. Of course, this has been exacerbated by the ridiculous number of injuries to the Pats D. Add to that the inexperience the new guys have in the defensive system and the simple fact that many of these players are just not as good as the guys they are backing up. Let's face it, when you have the backups for the backups holding the line for you, well, things might not always go your way.

Despite all the problems and injuries the team has faced so far this year, the Pats came out of an extremely difficult stretch of games at 3-3 and leading the AFC East. A win in tonight's game will begin to solidify that lead as the Pats begin another difficult 10 game stretch that includes 6 games against their AFC East rivals as well as Indy and K.C.

Many people seem to be calling the 2nd half schedule 'easier', but we all know that the games in the AFC East are never easy. Every team brings a little something extra to these AFC East matches and we all know Indy and K.C. are looking to take it to The Pats as well.

But let's not get too far ahead of ourselves. One game at a time is the mantra we should remember to follow.

That and, "How do we feel about a VIC-TOR-EEE!!?" (Go ahead, say it...)

Tuesday, October 18, 2005

Bruschi's back...

This is great to see. Bruschi's coming back to The Pats. Like all Patriots fans, I don't want to see Tedy do anything that will endanger himself, but it sounds like he has gone above and beyond to make sure that he can safely return to football. If he says he can do it and his family is behind him, I say that is great news. I can't wait to see thim come out and take the field in Foxboro. The cheers are going to be deafening.

And I have to say, at this point The Pats need all the help they can get. This 2 week hiatus to let guys heal up a little could not have come at a better time. As I have said, along everybody else, the injuries on The Patriots right now are totally out of hand.

Having Bruschi back on the field immediately helps with some of the issues the team seems to be going through due to lack of communication or experience with the defensive system. Let's face it Beisel and Brown are both decent linebackers. Maybe they are not as good as Bruschi and Johnson, but at the same time, I don't think their problem is that they totally suck either. Think about how well The Teds knew Belichick's system. It was almost instinctive for those guys, where Beisel and Brown are still in a learning phase. I'm sure they know the plays, but I'm also sure that part of the reason they don't have the quick reaction to things that happen on the field is partly because they are both new to the system. Bruschi knows the system cold and that can only help.

Plus over the next few weeks we will hopefully get Seymour, Dillon and a bunch of other guys back. The Pats injury situation last year had been bad,  but I don't think it was ever this bad.

Being 3-3 with the schedule they've had to face and the loss of players they've had to deal with is not all that bad in my opinion. Of course the media is having an absolute field day with it. It has been years since they have had the chance to rip The Patriots and beat on the team when it's down.

I rarely listen to WEEI anymore but I do listen on Monday afternoons to hear Coach Belichick's comments about the game. Prior to Coach B coming on yesterday, EEI played a long segment with callers totally ripping Duane Starks and other guys on The Pats. Yes, Duane did get burned big time during the Denver game, but to me it seemed like the Media was just reveling in The Pats woes from the Denver game.

Of course, my opinion of the Boston Sports Media, and Media in general is about as high as a stack of matches, so it could just be me...

Monday, October 17, 2005

Chore filled weekend...

Well the rain finally subsided on Sunday and there were a few occasional glimpses of sunlight, though it was mainly just cloudy, windy and raw all day. Still, it was better than rain though and I had a lot of outdoor projects that needed to get done.

First I had to pack up my wife's car with some furniture and stuff that she was going to take and try and sell at a yard sale.

Next I had to fill in a big hole in the yard that I had dug the week before. (Don't ask. Believe me you don't want to know.) That was fun.

I'll have to re-seed the whole area where the hole was with new grass because now it's just exposed dirt. I was thinking of making a pretend grave stone and sticking it there, at the front end of the now filled in hole, to pretened like somebody's buried there or something for Halloween. I could write a line from a Johnny Cash song on the pretend grave stone:

"Here lies Less More
4 Slugs from a .44
No Less, No more"

My lawn was incredibly high, having not been mowed in about 3 weeks since it's been raining every weekend, and it really needed to be cut before it got completely out of hand. The grass looked green on top but once I started cutting it, I could see it was a good thing that I did not let it go another week because underneath the nice, dark green top, it was turning a yellowish-green color, meaning that the grass underneath was starting to rot because of all the wet, heavy grass that was matted down and lying on top of it. Not good. So, it's a good thing I cut it but it was a pain in the ass to do. It took forever because I had to go extra slow, since it was so high, and it still got all clumped up so I had to go over the rows twice to chop it all up. Oh well. The weather was pretty unpleasant while I was cutting the lawn and it started to look like it might rain again right in the middle of the job. Thankfully the rain held off so I could get it all done.

The other thing that I had to do yesterday was paint the interior of my basement walls with some stuff called "Dry-Lock". We are going to re-model our basement and turn it into a playroom / den / office / escape from maniac children area, so step one was to repair a few cracks in the foundation and coat it with this goopy, white dry-lock stuff. It's supposed to help cut down on moisture, so I think it will be worth the effort in the long run, but it was kinda tough to apply. Not in a difficult way as in being complicated or anything, it was just hard work to coat the walls with this stuff. Imagine having to paint with warmed up marshmallow Fluff. That's what it was like.

While I was painting away, I listened to The Pats game on the radio. The Pats pretty much got their asses handed to them by the Broncos for most of the game. Denver ran up 2 quick TDs on long bombs from Jake Plummer. It was not fun to listen to.

I hate to use injuries as an excuse, but at this point, the number of starters on this team that are unable to play due to injuries of some kind is getting ridiculous. Dillon, Faulk, Poole, Gay, Harrison, Seymour, Light, Brown, Bruschi, Scott, and on and on and on...

Incredibly, despite being down by nearly 4 touchdowns at one point, The Pats actually made a game of it and came very close to tying the game, pulling to within 8 points with time left on the clock.

Unfortunately, you can only go to the well so many times, and this time, their last ditch drive fell short and the Pats wound up losing 28-20 to Denver. It was a valiant effort, especially when you consider that there were backups for the backups playing at several key positions throughout the game.

Now that The Pats have a bye week, I'm hoping they can heal up and get some guys back. After the bye week they've got Buffalo to contend with, who is always tough, and then they face off against the Colts. I'm like a broken record, but it seems like every week the opponent the Pats are facing gets tougher and tougher. Fine. The tougher the challenge, the sweeter the reward when you accomplish your goal I say.

Thursday, October 13, 2005

Pats pick up a nice find...

The Pats uncovered a nice find and signed former Miami safety Arturo Freeman.

I think this is a great pickup for the team. It really helps to shore up a decimated defensive backfield. No, Freeman's not a player who's at Rodney Harrison's level, but he's a quality safetly who can come in and be effective in a game. Great move by The Pats to pick this guy up.

This weeks game against Denver is probably going to be their toughest challenge of the season so far. The AFC West is stacked with very good teams, up and down, and Denver is at the top. Although the Pats finally got the Mile High Jinx of their backs a couple years ago, that will not make it any easier to win there in this upcoming week's game. Denver is always a very tough place to play and this should be a good game.

I think the important thing in this game is going to be a little different from weeks past, where the focus on the run game was the key. I think this week, The Pats need to get after Jake Plummer and force him into some mistakes. Plummer is a funny guy. Sometimes he looks unstoppable and other times he's an interception machine. Let's hope this week it's the latter.

Denver is a complete team and will be very tough no matter what so the Pats need to play a clean game. This would be a good week to clamp down on the penalties.

Hopefully the Pats will be completely focused on this game and not be thinking about the week off that comes after it. Then again, what am I thinking making a goofy statement like that? This is The Patriots we are talking about...

Oh and did I mention it's a 4:00 game? Nice. AND I hear the sun might even make a brief appearance on Sunday. In case you forgot, the Sun is that big, bright yellow thing that shows up in the sky sometimes. Don't be afraid if you see it...

Tuesday, October 04, 2005

Rough way to start the playoffs...

Okay... Well. That pretty much blew. What was the final score in today's Red Sox / White Sox playoff game, 1132 - 2 or something like that?

Hopefully The Red Sox (and The Patriots, now that I think of it,) have gotten all the 'suck' out of their systems and are ready to play for real from here on out.

We need a big game from our big, big game pitcher tomorrow [Mr. Wells, that's you].

After watching the 'game' this evening, I got an e-mail from The Red Sox that said, 'ALCS Ticket Purchase opportunity'. I got all excited because I thought I had been selected for the chance to enter the virtual waiting room and once again try my hand at getting some Red Sox tickets. Unfortunately, the e-mail said I was not selected, but I'm auto-magically entered in the World Series Tickets drawing. They should make the title of the e-mail say, 'Better luck next time' or something so they don't get folks all psyched thinking they're gonna have a chance at tickets when really it's just a big let down. Oh well. The Sox will just have to get to the World Series now so that I'll have a chance to get tickets.

Oh and in case you forgot, starting tomorrow, NHL HOCKEY IS BACK and regardless of what the media may have you believe, people care and we are excited about it! I watched some pre-season hockey over the weekend and it was great to see The Black and Gold skating again. Hockey Rules. The B's face off against the much-hated Habitants of Montreal tomorrow. The last time we saw them, they were sweeping us out of the playoffs.

My wife is very irritated with the current number of sports teams playing right now.

"Football, Baseball, Hockey... It's a nightmare!"

She likes to go see games live, but does not get into watching sports on TV. She'd rather watch some home makeover show or something. Plus putting up with all my antics during games can get a little... ridiculous (or so I'm told.)

Sunday, October 02, 2005

1000 days later...

As today's Patriots broadcast came to an end, Gil Santos informed us that it's been 1000 days since The Pats have lost a game at The Razor, Gillete Stadium. It was all the way back in Dec 2002. Hard to believe it isn't it?

It's too bad the streak had to end but it could not last forever and it will always be there to look back on.

Today's game reminded me of a 400 meter sprint between a runner who was in top condition and a runner with a bum leg, but lots of heart. The runner with the injury kept pace with his competitor for about half the race, but once they hit the 200 meter mark, the runner in top shape just kicked it into another gear and pulled away, leaving the injured runner gasping away in the dust.

The bottom line in todays game is that The Pats were simply unable to contain San Diego's run game. Tomlinson pretty much did whatever he wanted, whenever he wanted. He ran all over The Pats D and that's why they lost. It did not help that some killer penalties against The Pats gave The Chargers great field possession on their scoring drives.

On the other side of the ball, The Pats played a good game offensively but in the 2nd half were stymied and just could not keep up.

It was not an enjoyable sight to watch, but I have to admit, I remained calm throughout the game. I had one outburst during the 2nd half when Michael Turner busted through about 10 tacklers. After that I was like, "These guys are running all over us. We are done." I resigned myself to fate at that point. For some reason, I just had a feeling going in, 'This is going to be one of those games'. I hate being right.

On a side note, there is something that bothered me almost as much as The Pats losing the game, and that was The Pats 12th Man, or lack thereof. I was really disappointed at the noise level from the crowd when S.D. had the ball, and the number of empty seats as the game wound down really made me feel disgusted in my fellow Pats fans who were lucky enough to have tickets to a game. I felt embarrassed. Maybe we have become spoiled by success.

As somebody who won't be seeing a game in person this year, it annoyed me to see all those empty seats. And that is not meant as some kind of 'poor me, I don't have tickets' statement, it is meant to say, if you're lucky to be at a game, stay and support the team through the whole thing. Don't bail out when things start going bad. The Pats don't quit, neither should their fans.

Despite today's disappointing loss, I have a good feeling about next week's game in Atlanta. It's still early and the AFC East is still wide open.


Lets just WIN ok?

The Sox had Randy Johnson on the ropes yesterday, but couldn't land that knock out punch. It still seems incomprehensible to me that the MFY somehow won the Division again, but sickening as it may be, that is the way it is.

The Sox can still get into the playoffs with a win today.

Hopefully the Sox take all the drama and mystery out of the playoff situation and get it done. How about a nice big offensive attack to ease everybody's blood pressure, hmmmm?

The Pats have a tough challenge ahead of them as well. San Diego is an offensive powerhouse. The home win streak is definitely on the line today. The Pats need to stop the run. If they can do that, I don't think Brees can beat them, even without Harrison in the backfield... Richard Seymour has been an absolute force so far this season. He will the key player on defense.

I've been busting my butt this weekend getting some sorely needed chores done around here, staining the deck and front steps, washing windows and all kinds of other junk. Now, my whole body is sore.

This afternoon I am going to take the wife and kids out to an orchard to do some apple picking before the games start. Then I'm going to come home and sit my exhausted ass down and enjoy some sports.


Tuesday, September 27, 2005

Get well Rodney and Matt...

I was reading about Rodney Harrison over on Firestarter's blog and indications are that his leg injury is pretty bad. This is another big blow to The Pats D. Most likely he will not be able to play the rest of the season, but you never know, Harrison's a pretty determined guy. Maybe we'll see him on the field again for the playoffs... I'll be rooting for him.

Here's hoping one of the scariest, most intimidating players to ever patrol the Patriots backfield gets well and has a full recovery from his injury.


If you look up the word Bad-Ass, it should have Rodney's picture next to it.

Nobody could get themselves worked up into a fervor over a comment, press clipping, or even the slightest hint of disrespect and then make their opponent pay dearly for it like Harrison did.

Damn. We are going to miss you this year Rodney.

On the other side of the ball, news is that Tom Brady's body guard, Matt Light, has a broken leg. I'm not sure yet what the word is on how bad it is and when he could return.


In previous years, Bryan Cox and Ted Washington had both returned to the field after suffering from a broken leg during the season. Hopefully Matt's injury is not too bad and he will heal up quick.

Get well quick you guys, but most importantly, get well!

Be like Tom Petty...

It seems the Football Gods and The Baseball Gods, along with The Weather Gods have decided to mess with us.

The Football Gods are coniving to see how The Pats will do without Rodney Harrison and Matt Light this year. I can't really complain too much about the Football Gods for all they have bestowed upon us Pats Fans, but I certainly hope Rodney and Matt will both be ok.

Besides, the Football Gods tried this trick last year and look how far that got them. The Football Gods need to get more creative. (Actually, no they don't. The Football Gods are Wise and Merciful. Thank you Football Gods.)

Meanwhile, The Baseball Gods and The Weather Gods have gotten together to make things just a tad bit more difficult for The Sox and our Nation's playoff dreams by raining things out at Fenway last night and forcing the Red Sox to play a double header against an always extremely pesky Toronto team.

So now all we have to do is win 2 games in one day. No problem! As Red mentioned over at SG, I can just imagine the lineups for todays games...

You wanna test us? FINE. Have at it. Like Tom Petty said, "I Won't Back Down"

Rally Cap is in place. Bring it on.

Sunday, September 25, 2005

They hate us...

In Pittsburgh that is.


23-20, Pats

I love these guys.

Sox grind it out, Pats need to come out flying...

The Sox got it done in what turned out to be a grinder of a game, beating the O's 4-3. Timlin made things a little interesting to close out the game, but a win is a win and I'll leave it at that. Thanks to some help from Toronto, The Sox are now tied for first place in the Division with the MFY.

Unfortunately, my gut is telling me that the Skankees are going to win today's game. I wish it were not so, but that's how it is, so the Sox must win today. Feel free to prove me wrong Toronto...

The O's are a real pain in the ass and it will be difficult to pull off a sweep against them. Maine is pitching for the O's. He did not pitch well in his last start so let's hope for more of the same from him. Hopefully the Sox will lay the smack down with their bats today and make things a little easier for Wells. I'm glad this is the last we'll be seeing of Baltimore. Let's hope Wells' knee is feeling ok today.

As far as The Patriots go, I'm hoping to see them come out of the gates flying today after a somewhat embarrassing display last week. Cut down the penalties and eliminate the turnovers and The Pats will be in good shape. Our defensive backfield is a little beat up right now but I still feel that the key to beating the Steelers will be to take away the run and make Rothlessburger throw the ball. I have a feeling Belichick has something in mind to confuse the young QB.

On the offensive side of the ball, let's hope the running game can kick into gear this week. Our O-line is still coming together and may be missing Joe Andruzzi's leadership. Hopefully they will open up some holes for #28...

4:00 games rock. Now it's time to get some stuff done around here before the games start, as my wife just reminded me...


Friday, September 23, 2005

I get knocked down, but I get up again...

Last weeks loss to The Panthers was tough to swallow. I was not so upset about The Patriots losing the game, that's going to happen, I was more upset about the way they lost. Mistakes. Mistakes. Mistakes. Poor tackling, penalties, turnovers and questionable calls. That was not Patriot Football.

Carolina did not play their 'A' game either, they just took advantage of The Pats miscues and turned them into points. No disrespect to Carolina, but The Pats beat themselves in last weeks game.

In the end though, the bottom line is that it's a loss and like the majority of the teams in the league, The Pats are now 1-1 heading into another tough game against Pittsburgh.

The Pats are known for putting bad games behind them and bouncing back. Gil Santos pointed out in last weeks Carolina broadcast that he had not seen The Pats play that poorly since the loss to The Washington Redskins in '03. After that game they went on to win 21 straight...

I think The Pats can beat the Steelers. They just have to play clean, mistake free football. Cut down on the penalties and turnovers and The Pats are fully capable of winning this game.

I think this game is going to be a good test for The Pats and we are going to find out a little bit of what this years New England Patriots are made of this week. Like Carolina, The Steelers will have some extra motivation coming into this weeks game but I think The Pats will have some extra motivation as well. They are going to want to show the rest of the NFL that last week's performance was an aberration and make people remember what Patriot Football is all about. They've got something to prove this week against The Steelers.

After last week's game, I heard there was some bitching about the difficulty of this year's schedule from a few Patriot players. The schedule is the schedule. Look at it as a challenge to show up the rest of the league once again... by winning.


Tuesday, September 20, 2005

No I'm not hiding under a rock...

Posting has been pretty light this week...

Have I crawled under a rock after the last Pats game? Has watching the Red Sox continually lose ground to the goddamm Yankees driven me bonkers?

No, I am not cowering in a corner somewhere.

My laptop needs a new hard drive and until the drive arrives and I can get it installed, I'm not using the computer very much. Add that to the fact that I try not to write while at work, and posting has been light.

And to be perfectly honest, I've not been happy with my writing lately. I've been very stressed out the last week or so and I feel that it's been showing through in my posts, so I'm using the wait for a new hard drive as an excuse to take a little break.

Once I get the drive installed in my laptop and I can sit in my living room again, instead of sitting at a cramped desk surrounded by giant piles of junk, I'll get back to doing some regular posting.

Thursday, September 15, 2005

New Pats blog! New England Patriots Pulpit

I'm always looking for new Pats blogs.

For some reason, there are very few of them and I'm not sure why. It seems like most people I know who are Sox fans are also Pats fans, (or vice-versa. (It's not a competition.))

Anyway, you would think there would be more Pats blogs, since there are about a gazzillion Red Sox blogs, but for some reason, The Pats Blogger is a rare bird, so I was pretty excited the other day when I found this new Pats blog:

New England Patriots Pulpit

The list of Pats bloggers grows!


Tuesday, September 13, 2005

Breaking down Week 1 in the NFL...

A quick breakdown of Week One's NFL results.

Yay! - Good
Eh... - Don't really care
Blah - Bad

NE 30 - Oakland 20: YAY! (Obviously)

KC 27 - Jets 7: Yay! K.C. Should have got the shutout. Pennington looked bad. Good!

Jax 26 - Sea 14: Eh...

Cincy 27 - Brownies 13: Blah. I was rootin' for RAC.

NO 23 - Car 20: Yay! The only people rooting for Carolina in this one were Panther's fans...

Buf 22 - Hou 7: Eh... Prefer to see Buffalo lose, just because it helps The Pats in the Division.

Wash 9 - Chitown 7: Eh...

Pitt 34 - Tenn 7: Blah. I always root against Pittsburgh.

TB 24 - Minn 13: Eh... I am ambivalent about both teams

Mia 34 - Den 10: Blah. No win situation here. Fucking hate both teams. Prefer a Denver win, just because it helps the Pats, division record wise.

San Fran 28 - St. Louis 25: Eh... I don't mind seeing Martz lose games.

Dallas 28 - SD 24: Yay! Ok. I hate Dallas and I generally dislike Parcells. Basically I just rooted for Drew to do good in this one and he did. Will he keep it up? Doubt it...

Giants 42 - Ari 19: Eh... Will Arizona ever have a decent year? They are literally the football desert.

Detroit 17 - GB 3: Eh... Staying neutral on this one. I generally always root against The Pack, but with everything going on with Favre, I can't in good concience root against him right now.

Indy 24 - Balt 7 - Blah. Another case of 2 teams that I generally distain playing each other. Believe it or not, there was a time when The Colts were one of my favorite 'backup teams'*, but the Manning Hype-Machine has ruined that. Now I always root against them, even when they play another team I dislike, The Ravens.

Atlanta 14 - Philly 10 - Yay! The Eagles used to be one of my favorite backup teams too, but I pretty much can't stand them anymore either. I'm sick of the McNabb Hype-Machine and T.O. overkill. Vick is over-hyped too but he is fun to watch play. Plus, Atlanta is my NFC Superbowl Pick.

* The 'backup team' is a hold-over from the Dark Times when The Pats used to suck. Every season I would pick a handful of backup teams to root for once the Pats chances for a successful season were officially dead. I always rooted for The Pats first, even when their season had gone down the tubes, but if The Pats lost, I could at least take solace if my backup team was doing ok. The Pats don't suck anymore, unless you are their opponent, then it sucks to be you but I still keep some backup teams, just for fun.

Friday, September 09, 2005

Pats vs Raiders and the clock is ticking...

Currently, the score is 30 - 20 Pats. 3:04 left in the game and this one is pretty much in the bag. I feel safe writing about it at this point.

This one has not been exactly textbook for The Pats. The Pats run game has been stifled for the majority of the game and there have been a lot of drive killing penalties. The score really could be a lot higher for the Pats but I'm not going to be one of those people that complain about an 'ugly' win. Fuck that. A win is a win.

The difficulties in the run game I can understand, going up against a stiff D-Line. The penalties, I'm sure, will be dealt with.

The Defense has played well overall. The early TD allowed to Moss was really the biggest gaffe of the night. Poole should have had Moss initially and then Harrison should have knocked his block off, but neither happened and The Raiders took the early score.

For the remainder of the game, it's pretty much been all Pats, with the Raiders never truly threatening. The score does not really reflect the overall game. The only reason the Raiders even got close was due more to Pats miscues than the Raiders really executing against The Pats.

I felt like the Pats really never got into high gear in this one, while The Raiders were giving it all they had. Good.

In any case, it's good to get this first game and all the hype that came along with it out of the way and get this first win, especially on opening night, with the banner unfurling and all that. Losing on a night like this would not have been acceptable.

It's good to beat the Raiders and a big FUCK YOU goes out, once again, to YOU Ben Drieth. FUUUUCK Yeeewwwww.

During the game, they were showing some arial shots of Gillete Stadium and I could not help but be struck with how beautiful the staduim is and I thought back to the time when we were afraid that The Pats might be moved to St. Louis [The Dark Times]. Bob Kraft's [A.K.A. THE SAVIOR] speech was great (Anybody that rags on that guy should get a big kick in the ass as far as I am concerned) and I really felt true joy welling up in my chest as I watched that 3rd banner being unfurled. I could not help but laugh and clap my hands as I watched it being unveiled.

As for all the pre-game stuff, I did not really get to into all the singers and stuff. Green Day was ok and I though it was cool when the helmet opened up and Ozzy was in there singing(?) Crazy Train.

To be honest I just wanted to see the banner ceremony but at the same time, how friggin cool is it that all this stuff is happening with The Patriots? Just awesome. I hope people appreciate all this and what is happening right now for our team. I feel like a broken record sometimes when I say this but savor this Patriot Nation. Savor it.

Ok. Enough sentamental shit. The Pats are 1-0 with some extra time to get ready for a tough road ahead, starting in Carolina. It's football season muthafuckahzz!!

Oh man. I've got to go to work in a few hours... This is why I hate 9:00 games.


Thursday, September 08, 2005

Pats vs. Raiders... GO PATS!

I am still feeling pretty run down today but I am totally jacked and pumped for The Pats tonight. I can't wait for the Superbowl Banner to be unfurled and the game to start.

All game day rituals are now in full effect, starting with clothing:
Pats Superbowl 36 t-shirt: Check
Pats [work-approved] Polo shirt: Check
Pats socks: Check

Yes, I am one of those guys. And yes I do own and wear a Tom Brady jersey, proudly I might add, and no, I don't care if you think it's gay.

As far as the game goes, I'm not making any score predictions. I'm just going to predict a Pats win.

I think our offense will be fine overall, especially in the passing game and I won't be surprised at all if Brady picks the Oakland secondary apart, even with Woodson back there. Branch, Givens and Brown, teamed up with Grahm and Watson are going to be extremely tough to defend.

The running game is a little up in the air. When you see that the Raiders have guys like Ted Washington, Warren Sapp and Bobby Hamilton on D, you expect your run game will be in trouble, but last year Oakland sucked against the run so it will be interesting to see how Oakland's D is compared to last year.

In an article in Patriots Football Weekly, former Patriot, now Raider, Bobby Hamilton talked about how The Raiders defense was made up of a bunch of big name stars who thought they would just come in and be able to play last year and it didn't happen. Hamilton talked about how the Oakland D did not have that 'TEAM' attitude, like the Pats have, and that was their problem. Have they learned their lesson? Maybe they have but I still think the Pats O-Line will do fine protecting Brady against Hamilton and Sapp.

I am concerned to see how well Corey Dillon does against Ted Washington. The good thing about Dillon is that even if the middle is plugged he can bounce it outside and he is gone. He is not just a straight ahead runner like Antowain Smith was. Multi-dimensional, multi-faceted attack. F YEAH.

As far as The Pats D goes, I think our secondary will be ok too. Everybody keeps bringing up the abcence of Ty Law and wondering how we will 'handle' Randy Moss. Well Ty's been gone since Oct 31, 2004 folks, and The Pats have been fine without him.

Randy Moss. Whatevah. If Kerry Collins can't get him the ball because he's under constant pressure or on his back, what can Moss do? That brings me to the area that I think will be the key of the game and it has been the same area that everyone has focused on all pre-season. Linebackers. Our D-Line is solid, but our Linebackers need to be able to pressure Kerry Collins. Collins is good but prone to mistakes when pressured.

All in all, I think the Pats are the better team. Throw win Homefield Advantage at THE RAZOR ('Not today, not in our house...') and the fact that it is opening night with the 3rd Superbowl Banner being unfurled, how can you not like The Pats chances?

In Belichick We Trust

Wednesday, September 07, 2005

Brain Dump...

I've been feeling very run down and tired lately. I've got all kinds of shit going on and I feel like I just can't keep up with it all. I feel like I keep falling farther and farther back on stuff. Then, just when I think I'm making some progress and start to feel like I'm getting caught up with things, something happens to set me back.

It's as if I'm clawing to barely keep up and keep my head above water lately. Of course, most of these feelings are probably all in my head, but they are there none-the-less. In the meantime, can somebody toss me a life jacket please?

The Sox won on Ortiz's awesome walk-off homer last night and the Yankees lost to the Devil Dogs, making our lead in the East, 4 and our Magic Number, 22. I'm hoping we can win this series against The Angels and head into this weekend series against the MFY with a 3 game lead, minimum. I hope the Sox see the opportunity that is in front of them this weekend. They could really slam the door on The Yankees chances for the division and put a serious kink in their Wildcard hopes too. Seize the moment Red Sox!!

But, first things first. We still need to get past the always tough Angels...

The World Champion New England Patriots kick off the NFL season tomorrow vs The Oakland Raiders. It's still hard to believe it's already time for football! I am pretty excited about this NFL season and am really looking forward to tomorrow's game. It will be so cool to see the 3rd Superbowl Championship banner unveiled at THE RAZOR. I'll probably be bouncing off the walls tomorrow waiting for the game.

I found a cool site, Use it to find the cheapest gas stations in your town. There is a Konfabulator Widget you can use to go along with it here. There's probably a Dashboard widget for gas prices too, but I have not tried any of them out yet.

I've been listening to a really cool podcast that features some great jazz guitar, No Idle Frets, on the way home from work and it really makes the commute fly by. I start listening to it and just zone out driving. The next thing I know, I'm half way home.

I finally reached critical mass on my computer drive, with barely 500 Megs available, so I ordred a new drive to replace it. I bought some RAM too so my computer will be much happier once I get it all put in.

I've been toying with the idea of dropping the silly psudonym that I use around the interweb and just using my first name when I leave comments and stuff on my friend's sites but I'm still building up the nerve to do it. I know, I know, talk about making a big deal out of nothing. I can be such a goof about some things! Oh well.

I'll end this one with a quote to get you ready for The Patriots game tomorrow:

"I had an equipment manager at Michigan. He's got so many Big-Ten rings, he doesn't have enough fingers. He said, 'You know, Tom, you know what my favorite ring is?' I said, 'What's that?' And he said, 'The next one. The next one. That's my favorite."

-Tom Brady


Monday, September 05, 2005

Sox win, MFY keep pace...

The Red Sox got a quality win yesterday with Boomer going 9 strong and 'The Magic Helmet', as he's affectionatly called, slapping in a 3 run homer.

I was truly hoping that The A's and Barry Zito would enable the Sox to take that magic 4 and 1/2 game lead over the MFY as well. Unfortunately, The A's gave us no help and might have wrecked their own shot at a Wild Card at the same time. The Spankees are idle tonight while we play a make up game against The Other Sox. Hopefully Shilling has his shit to-gethah tonight and we can take another 1/2 game to move to 4 up on the Spanks before The United Federation of Anaheim Baseball Players from Los Angeles Angels come to town.

In the meantime, I got this in an e-mail from The Red Sox. Yes, for only $150, I can buy a piece of the field that the Red Sox played the World Series on, I can buy a piece of grass. Wow. You've got to be kidding me. I know The Sox are trying to make money in any way they can, but selling grass?? I'd love to know who actually buys this.

Even if I were to buy a piece of Fenway Sod, I'm sure within the first week of planting it in my yard, it would have a weed growing in it.

Now, if Dave Mellor were to come to my house to plant it, fix my lawn and cut one of those awesome designs in it, that would be a much different story!

4 days to The World Champion New England Patriots kick off the NFL Season and try to do what's never been done before in the history of The NFL. THREE-PEAT.

Friday, September 02, 2005

Pre-season finally over, Sox sweep...

Before I get into last nights games, a rhetorical question:

Why do people feel the need to speed up if you come up behind them on the highway and then attempt to pass them? And I'm not talking about being an ass and tailgating somebody on purpose to annoyingly try and get them to move over. I'm talking about when you're a normal car-length or so behind somebody, and you want to go around them. Why do people speed up and try to prevent you from trying to pass? I don't get it. Then, after a mile, they have slowed back down to their original speed... Ah, the joys of commuting.

Last night was, thankfully, the final pre-season game for The Patriots. Belichick did not play any of the starters and that was fine by me. The Pats did not do to well, losing 27-3 "in what could loosely be called a game", to steal a line from

Last night was more about guys on the bubble getting one last chance to make the team. I felt bad for the receivers on the that bubble, since QB Matt Cassell pretty much threw over everybody's heads.

To be honest, I only half-paid attention to the game. To give you some idea of the level of interest I had in watching it, the highlight for me was seeing the new Dunkin's commercial with Troy Brown teaching the Pats mascot dance moves and answering phones in Bob Kraft's office, (along with playing offense, defense and special teams of course!)

Of all the pre-season games, game #4 is the least meaningful. When pre-season started, I was excited to see some football again, even pre-season football, but now I am sick of it and ready for the real thing. Well, the real thing is less than a week away now. Bring on The Raidahs and let the smack-talk begin!

In Baseball-land, The Sox won and the Yankees lost, getting us back to a much more comfortable, but still tenuous, 3 1/2 game lead. Thank you, Seattle!

Personally, the magic number that will make me happy is 4 and 1/2. Anything over 4 and 1/2 games makes me feel safe about the race for the division. That reminds me, what's the magic number? Do the Sox have a 'magic number' yet?

This weekend the O's come into Fenway while The MFY are playing out in Oakland in what could wind up as a pivotal series for the Wild Card race.  All we have to do is beat these dang pain in the ass Orioles, a team that the Sox always seem to have trouble with, and I think we will be in good shape. Hopefully we can take this series with Baltimore and the A's will help us out in the West.

Think Positive!

Wednesday, August 31, 2005

Pats memory lane...

With the recent news of The Patriots releasing Rohan Davey and going with Matt Cassel in the 3rd QB spot, it made me think back to when Tom Brady 1st joined the team. Its funny to think back to that time when Drew was "THE MAN" and Tom wasn't even 3rd string. Remember, The Pats kept 4 QBs that year. When most teams just kept 3. Tom was #4, just trying to make the team, but Belichick saw 'something' in Brady and kept him around, using a precious roster spot on a 4th QB. A true diamond in the rough.

With everybody in Patriot Nation flipping out about Michael Bishop that year, there was Tom in the background. Think about it. Who knew?

I recall watching him back then in the pre-season thinking, this guy Brady seems pretty sharp. I think there's potential there. Of course I had no idea that I would someday come to revere the guy. Like I said, who knew??

What a great ride it's been for Pats fans. Remember to keep soaking it in gang. These are the glory days. One more dang pre-season game left. One week from tomorrow, it's the real thing.

I expect tomorrow's pre-season game to feature nothing but guys trying to make the team. I will actually be pissed if I see the starters take the field for more than 1 or 2 sets of downs.

Saturday, August 27, 2005

Pats look good in game 3, The Sox... Not so much

The Patriots looked sharp in their regular season dress rehersal last night, crushing the Packers 27-3. The Packers shot themselves in the foot quite a bit last night with penalties and such so it's hard to gauge how much of that factored in to making The Pats look better than they may actually be.

All in all though, I thought they got good pressure on Farve, who threw a lot of errant passes. The corners and safteys seem to be set. I think Bill Belichick is going to have a hard time making cuts in the defensive backfield. There's a lot of good players back there. The Pats seemed a little up and down with defending Green Bay's run game, but most of the time they seemed to hold Green Bay's running backs in check. Right now, the run defense is the only area that I have some concerns with but I have full confidence that by the time the real games start, things will be set.

Earlier in the day, a friend at work said that he had heard that Tedy Bruschi may be manning the sidelines in a semi-coaching role. I was looking for him but I did not see or hear about this happening. Maybe he was there and I missed it... I think it would be great to see Tedy take on this kind of a role during the season. I'm sure having him on the sidelines would be a big help in getting the new inside linebackers up to speed and with dealing with situations that come up during games.

I have a lot of confidence in our Offense. Brady and his receivers looked sharp. Corey Dillon and Kevin Faulk both looked primed and ready to carry the ball. There was a scary moment where David Givens appeared to be hurt after catching a touchdown but seemed to be ok later in the game. I let out a big sigh of relief there. We don't want to lose that guy, especially in a meaningless pre-season game!

Now that pre-season game #3 is over, I am officially sick of pre-season football and am ready for the real thing. There's one more pre-season game left for the guys on the bubble to show their stuff and try to make the team or at least get onto the practice squad.

The Sox won the game last night, barely. In trying to keep things in perspective, a loss would have obviously been worse, but that was one of the least enjoyable wins I've ever watched. At the end of the game I said to myself, "Thank god that one's over!"

Even though the Sox got the win, last night's game really gave me a lot of cause for concern about this team right now. The Tigers are not as bad as The Royals, but what does that mean? The Royals just took 2 out of 3 from us... These are the teams that we should be rolling over. Instead of stretching our lead in the division, we have allowed the Spankees to creep up closer and closer. Talk about blown opportunities...

I feel like our pitching is totally unreliable right now, up and down the line, from the starters right through to the closer. The only guy in the rotation that I have real confidence in right now is Clement. When he takes the mound, I always feel like we're going to get a win. When the other guys are in there, it's more like I'm hoping we can get a win.

Of course, this is all based purely on my own feelings. I'm sure if I were to look at the stats, things would be as bad as they seem. I've just got this lack of confidence in our pitching staff right now. The overall pitching inconsistency is troublesome...

If the Red Sox want to keep their AL East lead, they pretty much have to sweep Detroit this weekend, because, like Iain said, you know KC is going to get swept by the MFY. After this weekend we've got that pesky Tampa Bay team while the Spankees have Seattle. That is favorable for us, if we can finally take advantage for a change and win some of these series against weaker teams, teams we should be able to beat!

Friday, August 26, 2005

Bad start for Shilling, Pats pre-season game 3...

Hey everybody,

Sorry for the lack of posts. I've been kinda busy catching up with work crap and getting everything cleaned up and put away from my camping trip. I had over 500 e-mails to delete read when I got back to work yesterday, plus the normal barrage of disasters. Yay. At least it was a short week for me.

I can't believe how poorly The Red Sox performed on this road trip, especially losing 2 of 3 to the worst fucking team in baseball. The Sox really blew a great opportunity to put some distance between them and the MFY this past week. I guess they want to just keep things interesting till the end of September for us.

I keep telling myself that I should not be so upset about the current state of the Red Sox, since they still have the [slim] lead in the East, as opposed to fighting for a Wild-Card spot, which is the position the Sox are usually in this time of year, but after Shilling's performance last night, I have a sense of impending doom deep down in my gut.

I am admittedly bi-polar when it comes to the Red Sox though, so if they kick some ass this week while the Spankees, hopefully, lose a few, things will be sunny and happy again, but in the meantime I'm gonna be all, fuck fuck fuckity-fuck annoyed.

The Pats play meaningless pre-season game # 3 tonight against the Green Bay Packers. This game stirs up some memories of the last game of the 2002-2003 season. On the day of the game, I happened to have a bunch of my wife's relatives over the house who were full-blown Cheese-Heads so I cooked up some chili and went out and got a bunch of Wachusett Country Ales. The AFC East Title was on the line that day and it was either going to be The Pats or the Jets walking away with the division and a trip to the playoffs. The Pats needed a win and a Jets loss to get into the playoffs. All the Jets had to do was win and they were in and The Pats were out.

During the Pats / 'Fins game, I wound up putting on quite a display for the relatives, jumping around my living room, yelling and cursing at the TV and generally acting like a maniac as the Pats came back in the 4th Quarter and beat the Dolphins on an Adam Vinatieri overtime kick. They were all set up for the AFC East Championship. All that had to happen was for Green Bay to beat The Jets in The 4:00 game.

The Cheese-Head relatives smiled at me and were all, "You're set dude! Farve's gonna crush the Jets. No problem." They had such confidence, so Yay! I was all smiley and sunny-happy too! These Green Bay fans must know what they're talking about since they've watched them all year, right? The Pats were set! Here we come playoffs!

As we all know, The Packers had their playoff berth already locked up at that point and it turned out that Brett Far-v-re didn't really feel like playing that day.

Things did not go well for Green Bay in the 1st half of the game and they were down by 4 at halftime, 14-10. It was not an insurmountable lead but I was starting to get a little agitated and I turned to the Cheese-Heads and was like, "What's goin' on with your boy Farve here. He looks like shit. You know we're counting on him to win this game..." and they said, "Don't worry about it. It's Brett Farve. They're only down by 4. Green Bay will come back strong in the 2nd half. No problem."


Well it turned out that Brett and the boyz played like crap in the 2nd half of the game too and got their asses handed to them by The Jets. As the game wore on to the end and things got more and more out of hand for Green Bay, I horrified my Cheese-Head wearing relatives by shouting "NO HEART, NO FUCKING HEART!!!" at Brett Farve's image on the TV. Then, turning to look them in the eyes, I yelled, "BRETT FARVE HAS NO FUCKING HEART!! HE SUCKS! All you Cheese-Heads, GET OUT of my house!!"

The Cheese-Heads were totally shocked. They had never heard anyone talk about Brett Farve that way and were completely flabbergasted. Welcome to New England Cheese-Heads... Thankfully my wife stepped in and calmed things down, telling her relatives they didn't have to leave and that I didn't normally act like a lunatic.

The Jets won the game and the AFC East, beating Green Bay and a heartless Brett Farve 42-17. The Pats missed the playoffs. To this day the Cheese-Head relatives still can't believe that I actually told them that Brett Farve has no heart (and I have'nt changed my mind about it either..)

Back to the here and now. Of all the pre-season games, # 3 is generally considered to be the closest thing to a game that counts for something. We should get a good look at most of the starters tonight. I'll be flipping back and forth between The Pats and The Sox. Feel free to chat me up if you want to and if anybody wants to try that Google Talk thing, let me know and I'll send you an invite...

Wednesday, August 24, 2005

New England Patriots iCal calendar...

A reader recently asked me if I knew where to get a Patriots schedule for iCal. I've been looking around and have not been able to find one, so I just made one myself.

There is a link to download it over there on your right. Feel free to download it and enjoy! It's a standard .ics file so you can use it in iCal and you should be able to use it in Outlook without a problem.

iCal users, you can subscribe to the calendar by going to your Calendar Menu and picking Subscribe. Just copy in this URL and you should be set.

You can also share it on your own site as well if you wish. I only ask that you give me credit or a link or something if you do. Thanks!

I will be updating it as the season goes on with the final scores, hopefully all wins for The Pats :-)


Update: I've been updating the calendar with the wins and losses and then uploading it, replacing the old one. Let me know if you are subscribed and not getting the updates, (or if you're having any other problems (with iCal that is. Your personal life is your own problem. Heh.)) Also, I realized when I originally uploaded the file, it's name was in uppercase, which can cause problems. I uploaded a new file with all lowercase letters in the name.

Friday, August 12, 2005

It's game night

I just turned on my radio and was greeted by the golden, soothing tones of Gil and Gino during the Pats pre-game report. Ahhhh. It's time for football, people.

At the same time, The Sox are playing what some folks are calling an ALCS preview against the White Sox tonight. Despite this appealing prospect, I will be showing my true colors and watching The Pats pre-season game vs The Bengals. Actually, what I'll most likely be doing is driving my wife nuts switching between the two games...

We are quickly reaching that time of year that she dreads the most, The Sports Nexus, when Football, Baseball, Hockey, Basketball and NASCAR are all in season. I don't really follow Basketball or NASCAR that much, but according to her, Football, Baseball and Hockey are more than enough to deal with.

The 1st Pats game of the year is something to look forward to, even if it is only pre-season. I'll be interested to see who's doing what on defense, who's calling the game on offense, and the usual, pre-season battle to find out who's going to stand on the sideline and hold the clipboard for Brady.

In my living room, I'll be taking a good long look at the pre-season competition between mini-prezels and chips and salsa for the football snack of choice this year. A long time, veteran starter, Mini-prezels will be tough to unseat, but a little competition is always good.

In a completely unrelated topic, Joe Thornton signed a 3 year deal with The Bruins. I've got a good feeling about the B's this year.

Go Pats!

Tuesday, August 09, 2005

Can't let this one go without sayin something...

What is the story with that ridiculous looking getup?

(ap photo)

I'm sure Ty is getting paid ass-loads of money to wear those clothes but geeezzz... He looks like a f'in NBA reject... What a tool.

Ok. Go be a Jet, Ty. I've said what I had to say, now I'm done with you.


Monday, August 08, 2005

Ty Law a Jet...

This morning on my way to work I was thinking about Ty Law. I had not heard of him getting signed yet and I wondered if there was a chance he might come back to The Patriots.

Then when I got to work, I read this: Law agrees to multiyear deal with Jets.

That answers that question. Ty Law is a Jet. This will make things interesting.

Apparently the money is about the same as what The Pats offered, about 6 mil per year, but The Jets are giving him a 3 year deal, laden with incentives I'm sure, as opposed to the 4 year deal The Pats had offered him.

Funny, Ty Law considered The Pats offer an insult. Now, in the end, he will wind up taking less. Making the deal even less attractive to those indoctrinated in 'The Belichick Way', The Jests may actually have to cut some playahs and re-structure some contracts to make room for Ty.

I would not want to see The Pats have to cut players to make room for a big free agent contract, especially if that free agent is an over 30 cornerback coming off a pretty serious foot injury.

The Pats / Jets games will certainly have some added interest now. Personally, I am not shaking in my boots at the prospect of having to face Law twice a year. Don't get me wrong. I'm not disrespecting Ty (Heaven forbid!). The guy is a great cornerback but will he still have that break on the ball that he did prior to his injury?

Plus, The Pats are familiar with Law. His style of play and his tendencies are not going to change. However, I have no doubt that the ever-adaptable Patriots are more than capable of changing up their offensive schemes to deal with Law. In the long run, facing Law will not be any different for The Pats than when they go up against any other high-end cornerback around the league. Would I prefer he had not signed with the Jets? Obvioulsy. I would much rather have seen him sign to a team outside of the AFC East. To be honest, I was hoping he would wind up coming back to The Pats.

Now all I can say is, bring it on.

When I think of The Pats facing off against the rest of the NFL this year, this particular lyric runs through my head:

"With just a touch of my burning hand
I'm gonna live my life to to destroy your world"

"In Belichick We Trust"

Friday, August 05, 2005

Feeling Football antsy...

There is only one week left until we can watch The Patriots play football again and I'm starting to get excited. This time next week I'll be listening to the Patriots Pre-Game report on my radio and I can't wait.

Ok, it's only pre-season, and the 1st game is always kind of, well, not exciting, but still, it's Patriot Football! I'm looking forward to seeing all the new players, and that includes the scrubs, as well as seeing how the game will be managed on the sidelines.

On Defense I expect game management will be pretty straightforward, Eric Mangini will run the defense with input from Belichick, but it will be very interesting to see how Mangini does in his first game, even if it is only a pre-season match.

On Offense, who knows what's going to happen? I am very intersted to find out how the Pats are going to run things from the sideline and call the game on the Offensive side of the ball. Who's going to call in the plays? Will it be Belichick? Will it be Scar? Fears? Questions. Questions. Questions...

I also have to admit I can't wait to hear Gill Santos and Gino Cappilletti call a game again. Turn your tv down and your radio up.

On a side note, one of my favorite interweb sites, The Cold Hard Football Facts has revamped their site and it's looking kick-ass. If you have not been there in a while, go over and check it out! They have added a message board which is very cool. I don't usually get into message boards but so far this one has been fun. I've been enjoying posting on it. Hopefully the board will not go downhill and turn into a disaster like a lot of them seem to do.

Have a nice weekend and hey, (I have not said this in a while) you stay classy Patriot Nation!

Thursday, August 04, 2005

Various topic quickie...

Multiple topics in this post.

First, The B's. Yes, that's right. The Boston Bruins. Hockey. Regardless of what the press wants you to think, a lot of people like hockey and I am one of them.

I was very happy to hear the news a few days ago when The Bruins signed Glen Murray. I'm used to reading about the B's losing guys like Murray to other teams because they're so effing cheap. This time the Bruins stepped up and did the right thing for the team. This is great news for the B's offense.

Then, in today's paper, I read that The B's have signed Brian Leetch. Another great move. It makes me think that the Bruins are actually trying to build a Stanley Cup contender. They even made a concerted effort to sign Mike Modano. Even though it didn't happen and Modano signed with The Stars, the fact that the B's were in the game was very cool. Very un-Bruins like, but I'm not complaining!

The Bruin's will open up the season against the much-hated Habitants, which is quite fitting. In case you forgot, the last time we saw them, they were sweeping us out of the 1st round of the Playoffs.

Next, The Sox. The Manny / Edgah collision last night was scary. The pucker-factor on that one was very high and I was seriously worried that they had hurt themselves. Thankfully both Edgah and Manny seem to be ok. Guys, don't do that again!

How about Manny holding onto the ball and getting the final out even after Renteria bashed into him? Awesome job by Manny. You're a gangstah!

Between this and Clement getting hit last week, that's 2 serious injury near-misses. No more horrifying, potentially terrible injury producing plays for The Red Sox please. We've had enough now. Thank you.

Saving the best for last, The Pats. Richard Seymour is back on the field and recently interrupted a meeting with the Offensive Linemen to tell them he's "been eating raw meat and gunpowder."

I'm tingling.

Tuesday, August 02, 2005

Seymour gets a bump. Should be in camp soon...

It's being reported that The Pats have come to a contract agreement with training camp holdout Richard Seymour. The Pats are going to give Seymour a bump in pay, increasing his base salary by about 2 mil. It's expected that Richard will report to camp within the next few days.

Although this is not the long term deal that Seymour was hoping for, it does at least get him in the same ballpark as other top-paid defensive linemen. Hopefully with Seymour now back in the fold for this year, The Pats will eventually be able to come to a long term deal with him that makes him happy and keeps him in a Patriots uniform for many years to come.

Personally, I'm just glad this little spat is overwith and Seymour will be on the field for The Pats soon. Bitching about player contracts and salaries is no fun. It takes away from the enjoyment of the game. I want to talk about Richard Seymour, The Football Player, not Richard Seymour, The Employee. Now with the $$$ problems out of the way, we can get down to thinking about straight up football and what's happening on the field. Thank you!

In other Patriot news, Charlie Weis stopped by to visit training camp recently. I think it's cool that Charlie is visiting the guys at The Pats camp. I've read lots of quotes from various offensive players talking about how they're moving on without Weis, but it seems there is always a slight hint of saddness there when they talk about how things are a lot quieter on the field now, with a lot less swearing, etc now that Weis is gone. You can tell Charlie is missed. I'm sure it gives all the players that miss him a lift to see Weis at Camp.

It's hard to believe the 1st pre-season game is next Friday!


Sunday, July 31, 2005

TGIF: Thank God it's Football... Jon Papelbon's MLB debut... Christmas in July

The Pats have been in camp for 2 1/2 days and they're already getting pissed and feeling disrepected. When asked about how The Patriots' outside linebackers will deal with the loss of their Defensive Coordinator and their 2 starting inside linebackers, here's what Mike Vrabel had to say:

"When the coaches call for the first defense, eight guys don't run out there. Eleven do.''

Quotes like this one literally give me goose-bumps. Effin'-A I love The Patriots. I'm so glad that football is starting.

It's been raining on and off today so I've been watching the Patriots' 3 Games to Glory III DVD. I felt like I was going to float off my chair at some points as I watched The Patriots completely dominate The Colts in the Divisional Playoff game.

Later on in the day I was going to start watching the AFC Playoff game vs. Pittsburg but I got sucked into watching Jon Papelbon's 1st outing in the majors for The Red Sox instead. He's given up a solo homer but other than that, has been very impressive so far. He struck out his first 2 batters and then got the 3rd to pop up for a 1-2-3 first inning. As he headed for the dugout he got a standing ovation from the Fenway Faithful. How's that for a way to start your first Major League ballgame? Pretty cool.

I was enjoying the baseball game until my kids woke up from their nap. I had promised them they could watch a video when they got up. They came downstairs and wanted to watch... 'Frosty the Snowman'. Unbelievable... I can't believe they want to watch a Christmas special in the middle of summer.

Looks like the sun's trying to come out so I'm going to head to the backyard and listen to Joe and Jerry on the radio.

When Frosty ended I put the Sox back on and found the Twins now have a 3-2 lead. What happened? Dammit...

Handling the press, not the other way around...

Last night after the Red Sox game I watched Terry Francona's press conference. The jackals in the press must have asked the same question 10 different ways. Even as the frustrated Francona stated that he's gone over the Manny situation 'about 9000 times', the press bitches just kept at it. Francona even started to mock the press and began counting, '9002...' as they continued to ask the same question over and over.

When his press conference ended, Francona jumped up and got out of there as quick as he could. He seemed so annoyed, he practically tipped over his chair in his rush to get away from the press bastards. Who can blame him? I like Francona but I think he could use a few lessons from Bill Belichick on how to handle the press and not let them handle you.

Take for example the ongoing situation with Richard Seymour sitting out The Pats training camp. The Press have latched onto the issue and it's now a daily, ongoing question for Belichick. From Felger's story in the Herald, here's a quick sampling how the state of the art team in football deals with the press bitches:

``Here's what we'll do - you don't need to ask the questions every day,'' said an irritated Belichick. ``If there is something, I will lead right off with it and I'll tell you right off the bat. But right now, I'm focused on the players that are here . . . and I have no news to report at this time.''

Talk about a bitch slapping somebody in the nicest way possible. Heh.

I love the way Belichick stomps on the press but it's not just the Head Coach, it's the whole team. The Patriots Organization as a whole owns the press the same way they own Peyton Manning. When the press jackals don't get the answer they want out of Belichick, they descend on The Patriots players... and still get nothing.

Willie McGinist, in a quote from the same story regarding Seymour, slaps down the press like an annoying horsefly that's been buzzing around his head a little too long:

"The players continued to play it close to the vest, even those, like Willie McGinest, who are close to Seymour and talk to him regularly. ``He's doing what he has to do and we're doing what we have to do,'' said McGinest. ``It's only been two days.''


Saturday, July 30, 2005

Seymour Seymour Seymour and other Pats camp stuff

Continuing on the theme of disgruntled millionaires, there's still no sign of Richard Seymour at The Patriots training camp.

I'm very disappointed that Seymour has not shown up for camp. I honestly thought he was smarter than this. He must realize that he is trying to play a game that he can't win with The Patriots. Seymour is sitting out camp in an attempt to force the Pats to re-work his contract. The problem is, he has zero leverage. ZERO.

He's under contract for 2 more years. The Pats don't have to do shit with his contract if they don't want to. Obviously, they don't want Seymour to be unhappy. The Pats want him to be part of the team and they want him to stick around when his Free Agency comes up. At the same time, they are not going to break the bank on him. They're just not going to do it. The Pats didn't break the bank for Ty Law or Tom Brady. Does Seymour think this is somehow going to change for him? It has been suggested in the press that The Pats have already tried to rework Seymour's contract but the price is not meeting Seymour's desired amount. Sounds logical but still it's just some writer's guess. There's no official news from The Pats.

If Seymour does not show up for camp, he only continues to hurt himself as other players get his reps and he faces mounting fines. If Seymour winds up sitting out games, he can only go so long into the season before he forfeits this year and winds up in the same spot next year, no closer to free-agency than he is now. It's just dumb.

The fact is, Seymour is underpaid compared to his peers. Nobody is arguing that and I can understand Seymour's frustration. I've had to live with being underpaid. I've worked with guys who made twice as much as me to do the same job. Did it piss me off? Of course! At the same time, if Seymour wants to use the stance of, "I need to set myself up for the future, I can't take a risk of getting hurt," etc, to me that's fucking bullshit. When athletes use this argument it really gets on my nerves. Isn't he already set up for the future? It's not like he's making league minimum, (a measly 6 figure salary). He came into the league in 2001 and has already made more money than I'll see in my lifetime, so please, spare me the b.s. that he needs that big contract to be 'set' for the future.

I like Seymour. He seems like a good guy and I think he's a great player but at the same time, I don't appreciate his trying to hold my team over a barrel. My good will towards Seymour is starting to wear thin. I'll have no sympathy for him if Jarvis Green comes in and takes his spot. How will his free agency plans work out if he's not on the field next year?

If Seymour has not figured it out by now, nobody on The Patriots is irriplaceable. The Pats are holding all the cards in this game, so hopefully Richard will wake up and get to training camp soon.

It's got to be tough being a millionaire and playing a kids game for a living.

Meanwhile, after TJ's retirement, The Pats are thin at linebacker and now are getting even thinner with Monty Beisel having to sit out today's practice with some 'tightness'.

All the kick returners the Pats brought into camp, all of whom happen to have a history of injury problems, are injured. Oy.

"In Belichick We Trust"

Thursday, July 28, 2005

Ted Johnson announces retirement.

Ted Johnson announced his retirement from The Pats today. The first thing I thought when I read about this was, "Ohhhhh FUCK!"

This is a sudden and shocking announcement. I don't think anybody saw this coming. Of course it comes one day before camp starts. This really puts our Linebacking corps into a spin. We've got some younger guys on the rise and some free-agents that have been signed to the team but none have shown themselves to be the type of player Ted Johnson is. Granted he has had his role somewhat reduced in the last few seasons but I don't think the impact of his presence on the field can be understated. Ted Johnson is a run stopper, pure and simple and is an extremely smart player.

Let me say, this announcement does not take anything away from my feelings about Ted himself. I'm not pissed off at him at all. Ted is one of my favorite players and I completely understand and respect his reasoning for wanting to retire. It's a purely personal decision and as a Pats Fan I have no problem with it.

Really it's the timing of the announcement and the potential effect it's going to have on the team that's upsetting me. I guess if Ted's going to retire, it's best for the team to do it before Camp starts, rather than in the middle of it, which is what has happened the last few years with some O-linemen.

Right now, I'm still in shock. It's going to take me a little while to digest this.

For now I'll just say thanks to Ted for all his years as a Patriot. Even though he did suffer from some injury problems along the way, I think the play of #52 will stand out for a long time to come.

First Bruschi, now Teddy Johnson. Damn... this is a blow. Now we'll have to wait and see how The Pats deal with this. Time for some younger guys to step up. Hopefully Rosevelt Colvin will be back to full-force this season, but he is an outside guy... Well, we'll see what happens next!

"In Belichick we Trust"

Thursday, July 21, 2005

Sox vs Sox...

The Red Sox are about to start a 4 game set against the White Sox and I am a little nervous about this series. Maybe I am more worried than I should be but this White Sox team scares me. Normally I don't get this way about the Sox, no matter who they're up against. I think I'm probably a little bit more nervous than usual because I know the MFY and O's are right behind us licking their chops and hoping the Red Sox stumble against one of the best teams in baseball.

Of course, this is also a good opportunity for The Red Sox to show what kind of team they are.

In other news, Tedy Bruschi made it official. He's sitting out the 05-06 NFL season. I'm a little surprised he did not make an announcement sooner in the year, simply to make the ultra-annoying Boston press go away, but at the same time, he probably wanted to take as much time as he needed to determine his best course of action.

Personally I think Tedy is doing the right thing with this decision. Hopefully he will be back on the field next year, but if he's not, I will have no problem with that. In the meantime, Bruschi is still a Patriot this season and will remain a contributor to the team from the sidelines and the meeting rooms, much like Ted Johnson did when he was battling through his arm injuries.

Thursday, June 23, 2005

Nice comeback win for The Sox last night...

When I checked my mail this morning I was surprised to have a trackback notification from Typepad. Having never gotten one of these before, I was pretty suprised by this. It turns out that Universal Hub liked my recent story about my trip to New York and linked to it. That's pretty cool!

Hello to everybody that arrived here via Universal Hub and thanks for stopping by!

It's totally frantic today here at the ol' Software Factory (like always) but I feel a lot better now after my little rant about work the other day. Sometimes it's good to get stuff that's bothering you off of your chest. The search for job happiness continues...

Moving on to things that might actually interest somebody, I watched the Sox come from behind win last night and was impressed with the methodical hitting and base-running attack The Sox put on The Indians to take the lead in the late innings. Even Big Poppi stole a base last night. You don't see that every day! 

I like Keith Foulke and have been one of the people that have stuck by him despite his problems earlier in the season. That being said,  I have to admit that I was a bit nervous going into the bottom of the 9th with a 1 run lead. Although there were some nerve rattling fly balls, none were hit hard enough to get out of the park and the Sox got the win and the shaaawweeeep over the Indians.

To make things even better, both the O's and the MFY lost last night.

The Pats added more depth to their punt return team by signing RB Chad Morton. The Pats have some speedsters that can return the ball, but outside of Troy Brown, a lot of the guys on the return team have a history of injury problems; Tim Dwight is a prime example of this type of player. It's good to see Belichick adding some insurance just before camp starts.

Hopefully guys can actually stay healthy through camp and the pre-season. If they can avoid the injury problem and not have any linemen retire this time around, The Pats are going to have one of the deepest teams in the league when the season starts.

Finally, before you forget, go over to right now and stuff the ballot box for Johnny! Vote early, vote often folks. 

Monday, June 13, 2005

Bob Kraft's lawn kicks ass...

Check out Bob Kraft's lawn.

No clover, no dandylions, no weeds, no crabgrass of any kind... it's immaculate! Plus, how about those effin' cool logos!

I want my lawn to look like that.

In other Pats news, Richard Seymour needs a head check. Seymour is a great player and seems like a really smart guy. That being said, what is he thinking with this mini-camp hold out? If he wants to protest his contract this is not the way to do it. I hope Seymour figures that out by the time Training Camp starts.

I understand that he thinks he's not being paid fairly and he wants his contract re-done but sitting out mandadory practices is not going to help make that happen. If anything, Seymour is only going to make things worse for himself.

He's under contract for another 2 years and has zero leverage. Why should The Pats pay him more if they don't have to? In fact, Seymour could wind up owing money back to The Pats. Meanwhile Jarvis Green is getting his reps in Mini-Camp.

Earth to Richard, this is Reality calling. In case you forgot, you work for Bill Belichick and you know that he is not going to play along with your game.

I'll give Seymour credit though. After sitting out Mini-Camp, he had the balls to show up and get his latest bling at Bob Kraft's house where he stated publicly that he loves The Pats organization and wants to get another ring. That would be fine with me Richard.

Hopefully this is just a bump in the road and eventually Seymour and The Pats will come together and work out a deal that will make both sides happy, with warm fuzzies and Superbowl Championships all around.

You know what, now that I think about it, I would like to re-negociate my contract too. I'm feeling under paid and under appreciated and I'm going to sit out my job until my boss caves and gives me more money and a seat by the window. Do you think it will work? Yeah, did'nt think so...

On a final note, I found Tom's Brady's comment about the championship rings to be very funny.

"If they get any bigger, you'd have to wear it on your belt..."

Ha. All this and a sense of humor too. Fucking bastard... Just kidding. I love Tom almost as much as Bridget does. I'm just jealous of all The Patriots right now. In fact the entire Patriots Organization has me writhing with envious jealousy. Especially Bob Kraft and his weedless lawn...


Wednesday, June 01, 2005

Nice win for Miller and The Sox...

Last night's Red Sox game against the O's started out with a lot of tension, with the O's holding a 1-0 lead for half the game until The Sox broke things open in the 5th.

Wade Miller did a great job and really seemed to bear down to get out of a potentially scary 7th inning uscathed, even though he was obviously tiring. It was great to see Miller get the win and The Sox make up some ground on the O's.

One thing I did not need to see was Johnny Damon bashing his head against the bullpen wall trying to make a catch. Not that I don't appreciate Damon showing no fear for himself and sacrificing his body to try to make a play, I just hate to see him get injured. And I did'nt need to see all those re-runs from 2 years ago when he collided head first with Damian Jackson. Thanks anyway NESN but I chose not to watch them.

Hopefully Johnny will be fine.

Oh, and Edgah is Playah  of the Week...

Wake goes against Ponson tonight...

On a completely unrelated note, today is June 1st, which means Patriots training camp starts next month. As much as I want to squeeze every ounce of summah-time fun out of the next few months, I can't help but think to myself that Football will be here before you know it, and that is exciting.


Monday, May 23, 2005

Long time, no post...

Hi Everybody!

Sorry I have not posted something in a long time, well, a few days, which I guess is a long time for me. I've been wicked busy at work and at home and have just been too burnt out to post anything.

Another weekend, another rainy day. Are we ever going to have a weekend where it does'nt rain? I am really sick of this weather pattern we are in. At least it was nice on Saturday and I was able to finish up my kid's swingset / slide / rockwall / clubhouse thing. That was a huge project. It was not hard to build, just very time consuming. It took me, my Dad and my Father-in-law 2 days to put it all together. Now it is done and the kids really like it so that makes all the time spent well worth it.

It was actually fun to spend some time together with my Dad and Father-In-Law working on that project and now we can all look at it with pride and watch the kids enjoy it, which is a nice feeling. Warm fuzzies all around!

I did not see many of the games this weekend but I kept up with the results, as I always do. I saw the end of the game Sat and watched Wake's press conference afterwards. Man, poor Wake looked so bummed out after the game. Sitting in front of that brick wall answering questions from the press, he looked like he was up against a firing squad or something. I'm sure it must suck having to sit there and answer questions from those a-holes in the Boston press. That's got to be the worst part of what those guys do...

I listened to most of the game on the radio yesterday. It was nice to hear Clement go the distance for the rubber game of the series.

I also saw in the news that Troy Brown is back where he belongs on The Patriots. Bingo! That is great news. I had hoped he would be back. The Pats also made what I thought was a pretty cool and classy move in signing Otis Smith and then allowing him to retire from the game as a New England Patriot.

"I wanted to retire as a Patriot because the greatest success of my career came in a Patriots uniform." - Otis Smith

My man, OTIS!

Patriots game tickets went on sale at 10:00 AM on Sat and were sold out at 10:05. Unbelieveable... After my failed attempt to buy Red Sox tickets online, I did not even bother with trying to get Pats tickets. As much as I would love to go to a game, I did not want to waste any more time in any virtual waiting rooms so I'm glad I did not waste my time trying to get Pats tickets.

How the heck is your average Joe fan supposed to get tickets to a Patriots game?

Monday, May 09, 2005

Brady contract is done. Brady takes less $$$ to help Pats... - Peter King: Patriots win big in Brady deal.

"To be the highest-paid, or anything like that, is not going to make me feel any better. That's not what makes me happy. In this game, the more one player gets, the more he takes away from what others can get. Is it going to make me feel any better to make an extra million, which, after taxes, is about $500,000? That million might be more important to the team.''
- Tom Brady

Yes, that is an actual quote from Tom Brady in the latest Peter King article. How about Brady? Can I tell you how privileged I feel to have this guy on my team (Yes, it's my team).

He got his new contract, 6 years, 60 mil. Not chump change for sure, but still less than Manning and Vick, two quarterbacks who have not done jack when you compare them to Brady's accomplishments. And before you try to talk to me about Manning's stats, here's the only stat that counts if you want to compare Brady to, well, anybody: 4 years as a starter, 3 Superbowl victories.

Yet Brady does not want to kill his team's ability to compete and sign players in order to be the highest paid quarterback in the league. Winning means more to Tom Brady than dollar signs do. How awesome is that? How classy. How refreshing.

I know, I'm gushing a little bit here, but I can't help it. I'm just happy that he's signed and the team friendly way it was done, is just amazing to me.

Tom Brady is the MAN!

I have a good feeling about The Pats this year...

Saturday, May 07, 2005

Mother Nature, I'm sorry for whatever I did to offend you

I think sometimes Mother Nature has it out for me.

I had tickets to tonight's Red Sox game but it is washed out due to this wonderful weekend rain storm. I was pretty excited to go to the game too.

Trying to think positive, I say to myself, "OK, no problem. Maybe they will reschedule the game to a day later in the summer when it's nice and warm."


They are scheduling the game for tomorrow at Noon as part of a day / night double-header. Tomorrow is also Mother's Day. I can't go to a baseball game on Mother's Day, so I'm fucked.

The weather is supposed to be bad tomorrow too, so I'm going to continue to try and be positive and pray for another rain out for the afternoon game. Otherwise, I'll have to find someone who can use the tickets, which is practically impossible since it's Mother's Day... Of course, with the way Mother Nature has been lately, it will probably be just dry enough for them to play the game tomorrow afternoon, in which case I'll be stuck between a rock and a hard place, with tickets to a game that I can't go see and practically nobody wants to buy...

Positive thoughts. Positive thoughts...

With this weekends non-stop dreariness, I've had some time to start watching 3 Games to Glory III.

All I can say to describe it is one word: "AWESOME". If you're a Pats fan, you need to get this DVD. It's got tons of great behind the scenes stuff, some of which is really funny, and it's also got every play of the Divisional, Conference and Superbowl games. There are some definite 'spine-tingling' moments as well as a few parts that make you laugh out loud and other parts that can make you feel a little misty too. In short, the 3 Games to Glory III DVD totally kicks heinie.

So far, there has been only one downside to watching 3 Games to Glory III. It makes me remember how much I miss football...

Monday, May 02, 2005

Its not like I hate Flutie...

I did not want to talk about Doug Flutie anymore but everybody at the Software Factory keeps coming up to me with a big smile and asking me, "Hey, what do you think about The Pats signing Flutie?"

"Great," I say, "I hope he has a great pre-season and then we never see him take another snap."

Then I get a weird sort of half-pissed, half-quizzical look in response. "Why do you say that?"

"Becauuuzzzzze, if Flutie is in the game, that means that something has happened to Brady."


This is where I start to get a little irritated myself. "What do you mean, 'SO?' I don't want something to happen to Tom Brady. I want him to play." (While all this is going on, I'm thinking to myself, "Why is this so hard to understand?")

"Yeah, but Flutie's got a lot of experience, he's a good backup."

"Exactly. That's great, and I hope that's all he is this year."

At this point, the person I'm talking to gives me a flustered look and then walks away like I've insulted his Mom or something while I'm like, "WHAT?? What's the problem?"

I'm not saying Flutie's not a good backup QB. He's got a lot of experience and hopefully he can be helpful to the team in that capacity, but the bottom line is, I don't ever want to see him in a real game where it counts. This is not because I don't like him or think he sucks (which I don't), it's because if he's in the game that means Brady's out and if Brady's out, that is not good. In fact this whole topic is starting to give me the willies. I'm worried I might conjure up some bad luck by just talking about this.

Backup QB's are like an insurance policy. You want to have a good one and then you hope you never have to use it. I think Brady is the best QB in the league and I am thankful to The Football Gods that he plays for my team. With the exception of 4th Quarter mop-up duty, I don't want to see his backup in a game ever, no matter who it is. I'd feel the same way if The Pats signed Brett Farve to be Brady's backup.

Why couldn't Chandler Bing just have stayed on The Pats?

Friday, April 29, 2005

Pats sign Flutie...

Just when I was going on about how good The Pats offseason has been, they go and throw a wrench in the works and sign Doug Flutie as their backup quarterback. I am not a Flutie fan and I think the guy is a troublemaker. I realize he's been a winner everywhere he's played, including New England. He's also been a disruptive pain in the ass everywhere he goes because he's not content to be the #2 guy.

Well this is probably Flutie's last stop and I personally hope he never sees the field during the regular season, unless it's to come out and take a knee with The Pats holding an insurmountable lead.

Sit on the bench, hold your clipboard, keep your mouth shut and hope Brady can get you a Superbowl Ring to finish out your career Dougie.

The Pats are makin' some nice offseason moves...

As I read more and more about The Pats draft of 2005, I become more and more impressed. Michael Felger over at the Herald has been putting out some good articles about The Pats draft picks. Based on my initial impressions from reading about the guys in this year's draft, there is reason to get excited. They may not be flashy guys who are going right to the top of the depth chart, but they all seem to have that "Patriots" quality; hard working, nasty, team oriented, great attitudes, willing to learn and do whatever the TEAM needs. I'm gettin' psyched... When's training camp start??? Rookie Mini-Camp is this weekend. It will be nice to see a little preview of what these new guys can do.

Felger also says that Troy Brown's situation should become clear within the next week or so. I hope Troy comes back.

I've decided that Mike Felger is the only sports writer in Boston that I actually have respect for.  Unlike most of the other writers that cover the team, his stories are informative and straight forward. I like that there is no underlying hatred of the Pats or thinly veiled jabs at Belichick or the team in Felger's stories.

Mannix and Borges are at the top of the 'I hate The Pats' Boston sports-writer list. If I see they have written an article, I won't even read it. The only time I read their stuff is by accident and usually by the time I'm halfway through the article, I'll be like, "Who the hell wrote this piece of crap?" I'll check the top of the page and sure enough it's almost always Mannix or Borges. There are other writers who are bad too but I don't have the energy to list them all. Mannix and Borges just happen to top the list.

The Pats are still working the Free Agent wire and we may see Chad Brown and / or Aaron Glenn in a Pats uniform soon. The team seems to be stockpiling players at positions that suffered a lot of injuries last year. The downside of this is that the people The Pats are stockpiling with happen to have a history of injuries themselves. The upside is that these are guys who are motivated to show they still have what it takes to play in the NFL and will be signed to 'normal' contracts that won't break the bank. If they get hurt or just plain suck, The Pats can just let them go. They are not getting signed with killer contracts.

Have I mentioned that I love The Pats?


Thursday, April 21, 2005

CHFF rips Borges once again.

The Cold Hard Football Facts bitch slapped Ron Borges (of the Boston Globe) a-gain. Check it out here if you enjoy a good laugh or just want to see Borges get stomped.

Sox dominate, Draft Weekend, Celts vs Pacers...

David Wells dominated the O's last night and after several scoreless innings the Sox bats errupted. The final score was 8-0, Red Sox. Wells went 8 innings and looked great against a scary Orioles team. Baltimore always makes me worried. For some reason they seem to have the Sox number so it was nice to see Wells shut them down last night.

Also, have I mentioned that I love 'Widescreen Wednestday'? The letterbox thing NESN does kicks ass. I wish NESN would do that for more than one game a week. It's not gonna make me buy a new HDTV set, but it's still cool.

Tonight it's Clement vs. Lopez. We'll see how Clement does tonight. I'm rooting for the guy but he has not inspired a lot of confidence in me so far...

Eric Wilbur has an article in The Globe today where he wonders which pitcher goes to the bullpen when Wade Miller joins the team. If Wake and Arroyo are still pitching like they are now, and Clement is still pitching like Rick 'Wild Thing' Vaughn (before he gets his eyeglasses), I don't see how you can put either Wakefield or Arroyo out in the pen and leave Clement as a starter.

That's all about a month away though, so we'll see what happens...

I'm looking forward to the NFL Draft this weekend. Even though I don't really follow college football and I have no idea who any of the players are, it will be cool to see which players The Pats end up picking and then learning about them after. It will also be interesting to see what kind of maneuvers they make to move up or down the draft board. Belichick never picks the player that the so called 'experts' expect him to. I'll be keeping my eye on the results as the Draft progresses. 

It turns out The Celts will go up against the Indiana Pacers once the playoffs start. That should be interesting... I'm not setting my expectations too high. If they get into the 2nd round I'll be happy.

Friday, April 15, 2005

Props for The Pats

I just realized I have not given hardly any attention to my beloved New England Patriots lately and I need to give my boyz some props.

They've signed a bunch of players to hopefully fill the void made by those that, for one reason or another, have left the team, hung on to some key free agents, signed some contract extensions and are making ready for the Draft next weekend. In the middle of all that, the visited the White House and kept the bastards in the MSM off Tedy Bruschi's back.

I have to call them out for tripping up on Brady's contract though. What's up with that wacked out installment plan thing The Pats tried to pull with his signing bonus? Brady is already getting paid less than Manning, Vick and that guy that played in the Superbowl for the Eagles, (what was his name again?) so just give him his signing bonus and make him happy. Normally I don't mind all the creative penny-pinching but don't mess around with Brady.


Thursday, February 24, 2005

Pats, Celts, Sox, Snowblower

From what I can tell, there is not much to talk about today in the world of sports.


The Pats released Earthwind Moreland and signed a few new assistant coaches. No news on the Pats Offensive Coordinator job...

It's looking like Antoine Walker is coming back to the Celts. Interesting. Very interesting. The deal is not final yet but it looks like they just have to dot the 'i's and cross the 't's and it is going to happen. This should make Paul Peirce happy. I liked Antoine so I'll be glad to see him wearing The Green again. Maybe I'll even watch more than 1 quarter of basketball before the season ends. 'Twan may provide the spark this team seems to need right now.

Curt 'THE MAN' Shilling threw 47 pitches from the mound today down at Spring Training. This article in the Globe reports he was not happy with his performance but Francona and pitching coach Dave Wallace were 'encouraged'. Personally, I'm more than encouraged. I'm thrilled.

In other 'Life in General' news...

The Snow-blower Saga continues... My now famous snow-blower was picked up today so that whatever is wrong with it can be repaired. Normally I would attempt this kind of manly repair-work stuff myself, since a snowblower is really not that complicated a machine, but since I don't have a garage, working on it outside in the middle of winter can be rather unpleasant, especially if your numb fingers run across a sharp edge or drop a bolt or nut or something else important in the snow and it gets lost. Violent swearing and other nonsense usually ensues when that kind of thing happens. So, in my mind, it is worth it to shell out some dough to get it working again. I'm just hoping I can get it back before the next big storm...

Thursday, February 17, 2005

Get well soon Tedy

Get some rest and well quick Tedy!! Pats fans everywhere are hoping you are feeling better.

Friday, February 11, 2005


I'm feeling very un-inspired since The Superbowl. Now that there's no sports to talk about, (yeah, yeah, I know, The Celtics are playing, yawn.) I've got very little to write about.

I did not intend this blog to become so sports oriented but somewhere along the way that's what happened. As a matter of fact, when I started this thing, I purposely avoided writing anything about The Sox because one of my insane superstitions was that it was bad luck for me to write about them. In a previous blog to this one, (I have started and deleted like 3 blogs prior to this one. Lame-ass, I know...) I wrote about the '03 Sox, The Playoffs, The ALCS... Well, we all remember how that turned out and I actually came to believe that my writing about The Sox was bad luck. Timmlan in the 8th, Williamson in the 9th... Timmlan in the 8th, Williamson in the 9th. Fucking Grady.

Maybe some wounds go too deep to ever heal completely, like Frodo and that cut he got from the Ring Wraith in The Fellowship of the Ring... Wow. Could I be more of a geek?

Sorry. There I go, digressing again. Anyway, when I started this blog I was able to go quite a while without saying a word about The Sox but eventually, the pressure became too great and I decided to tempt fate and actually write down my thoughts about The Sox. There were some tense moments but thankfully, we all came through it ok.

You may be wondering, "What about The Pats? You write about them no problem."

I have always felt it was ok for me to write about the Pats since they are impervious to such nonsense as getting jinxed by some idiot writing about them in a online journal. There ya go.

Moving right along...

It snowed today and nothing puts me in a bad mood like having to shovel snow. I fucking hate hate hate it. But, today is different, because today is "Truck Day", the magical day when The Red Sox load up all the gear and get ready to head down south for Spring Training. That means Spring is getting closer and that puts me in a good mood.

Happy Truck Day!

Finally (or mercifully, whichever you prefer) this Sunday is the Pro-Bowl. The Pro-Bowl means no more Football till August, which is an awfully long time (sniff). At least we'll soon have those new Superbowl DVDs and '3 Games to Glory III' to help pass the time till Training Camp starts up in July.

The Pats offseason will be very interesting with all the changes in the front office coming, as well as dealing with players, the draft, etc.

I would like to set the following objectives for The Pats guys who are in the Pro-Bowl this weekend:

1) DO NOT under any circumstances play any beach football games. In fact, avoid walking on the beach all together. Just hang by the pool where it's safe.

2) Try not to gloat too much around Peyton and and Donovan while you're there.

3) It's officially "The Offseason" so hey,

you stay classy Patriot Nation.

Monday, February 07, 2005

Kickin back

I feel a little guilty because there's not a lot of actual work getting done today here at the ol' Software Factory. I'm feeling the effects of a late night and a few too many beers celebrating The Pats big win. I'm extremely happy about the victory but, man, I don't know how many more of these close games I can take! Everybody around here is in a good mood and talking about the win.

Now that the Superbowl is over, there's no sports to follow till the Sox start up again on Opening Day and maybe that is a good thing. I need to take a little breather. There's the Celts and NASCAR but my involvement with following those sports could best be described as 'casual' as opposed to 'living and dying with every play' with The Pats and Sox.


I like those UPS brown colored Superbowl hats. I'll be able to wear it around without fear of it getting all grungy.

The Pats have slain another dragon by winning a Superbowl in the white uniforms. I believe they have now successfully overcome all of their historical hexes. They've completed the Superbowl Trilogy, they've won on the road out in Denver, they've won on the road in Miami during the hot months. Are there any long standing obstacles left that I've forgotten?

3 continued to be a magic number for The Pats. All 3 of their Superbowl wins have been by 3 points.

I'm planning to go to the parade tomorrow. When the Pats won the first one, it was suggested by my boss at the time that I not attend the victory parade, hint hint. I don't remember why I didn't go to the 2nd one. I was going to go to the Sox parade then wimped out because of the crappy weather. Well, this time, I'm gonna do it, as long as I can get permission from The Man. Hope to see you there. Look for the guy in the Patriots gear. ;)

I need a nap

Stay classy Patriot Nation.

I love these guys...

Images from

How about Belichick's Dad gettin' the ice bath with his son?


New England Patriots... Dynasty. Back when I was in college, a freind of mine was a big Niners fan. He would always talk about how his team was the 'Team of the 80's' and I would always say, well, someday it will be the Patriots turn and he would kind of laugh at me while I was being totally serious. Yah mutherfukcer!! We are the Team of the 2000's Dave...

I've got to go to work tomorrow. Goodnight Patriot Nation. Sweet dreams!

Wednesday, February 02, 2005


Hey, great news! We're one day closer to the Superbowl. Other than that, not much going on today...

Here's another tune from my Pats Superbowl playlist. This one is from Godsmack. I think this line from 'Timebomb' fits Rodney Harrison perfectly.

"I’m a bad motherfucker who lives it every day.
You never look at me now, you never look me in the face.
I’m a timebomb, timebomb, baby."

Since there is no hockey, once the Superbowl is over, it's pretty much a desert as far as the sports scene goes. There's nothing happening till Spring Training and the Daytona 500 at the end of the month. So, as sort of a preparatory move for dealing with the Post Superbowl Lack of Sports Scene, I attempted to watch a Celtics game last night.

I could only watch about 10 min. I just can't get into the NBA. I feel a little bad about it because I feel like I should support the Celts but I watch for like 5 min and just kinda zone out. Celtics Pride was riding high a few years ago when they were in the conference finals but right now there's just no interest. Sorry guys... By the way, Waltah McCarty, what is up with those socks up to your knees anyway? "I LOVE WALTAH!" but you look really goofy man!


Monday, January 24, 2005

Good Mood Monday

Happy Monday everybody. I'm in a real good mood today, along with everybody else here at the ol' software factory. The Pats are headed for the Superbowl once again and it feels great. My blood pressure is back down to a normal level and that helps too. I'm sure my fellow members of Patriot Nation thoroughly enjoyed watching the Pats absolutely dominate last night. It was almost a complete reversal of the Halloween Game. Redemption, Revenge and a trip to the Superbowl all wrapped up in one package. Nice.

It was great to see Corey Dillon at the end of the game. That guy is psyched. I liked watching the Pats players waving their 'terible towels' at the few remaining Steelers Fans left in the stands by the end too. Is it just me or did they seem to give up on their team awfully fast? There were a lot of empty seats in the 3rd quarter.

After the game I stayed up and watched the interviews while I calmed down. Deion Branch made a great comment. He said the team had a little 5 min celebration and then were right back to business. There's still 1 game left. Excellent.

Did you realize this will be the Pats 4th trip to the Superbowl since 1997? That's quite a run. Right now the Pats are .500 in the Superbowl. Hopefully we can get that up to a winning percentage with Superbowl 39.

Even though The Pats had the lead for the entire game last night, I have to admit I was on the edge of my seat the whole time. I just get very wound up for these playoff games (the wife says a little too wound up) and even when the Pats are doing well in the game, I'm still super nervous. The Pats need to be up by 24 in a game before I can relax. Anyway, that's just how it is. I can't help it.

Also, I tend to jump around and yell a lot when exciting things happen in the game. This has a negative effect on calming my kids down for bed for some reason. Once we finally got them to bed, I woke them up a couple times too. I received several scoldings, "I know you're excited but will you PLEEEEEZZE to try and keep it down till they fell asleep!?"

There was a point in the game where it looked like the Steelers might start to get some momentum and mount a comeback and I was writhing in agony. I then realized that I had the Patriots Superbowl 36 Mug on the floor and not where it belonged on the mantle. I quickly moved the Pats Superbowl 36 Beer Mug back to it's rightful place on the mantle and got under the Lucky Pats Fleece Blanket. Just like that, the Pats had the game back under control. That was a close one. Yeah, I'm extremely superstitious too..

Did I mention that I can also see into the future? In a previous post I said I thought that Rothlesburger would throw a pick on his first offensive series of the game and he did. Whoa.

Yes I am a freak when it comes to watching the Pats in the Playoffs. Does'nt it sound like fun to watch a Pats game with me? Of course it does! My kids favorite part is the pre-game strech followed by a jog around the house to warm up.

So it's going to be The Patriots against The Eagles for the Superbowl. It should be a good game and once again, I really like the Pats chances in this one. This is the last ride of Belichick, Weis and Crennel together and you know they want to go out on top.

A lot of people dread the 2 week hype-fest before the game but I kind of like it. It gives me a chance to wind down a little this week and just enjoy the fact that we are going back to the Superbowl. Then next week I'll be rested and ready to get all geared up for "The Big Game".

You can be sure I'll be writing a lot more about "The Big Game" but right now I'm just basking in the AFC Champioship win.


By the way, did you know that it's not allowed to say "Superbowl" in ads and stuff unless you pay to get permission to use the word? Otherwise you have to say, "The Big Game".

"Isn't 'dat veeeeiirrd?"

"In Belichick We Trust"


Friday, January 21, 2005

I dream of Superbowls...

Last night I had a dream that I was in the AFC Championship game. I accidentally woke up my wife while trying to tackle somebody in my sleep (I think it was Burress). "Why are you pushing me?" she asked sleepily. I mumbled something about "No gain on the play. 4th Down." and went back to dreamland.

While I'm on the subject of dreams, how's this little fantasy sound: 1st play of the game, Steelers kick off to Bethel Johnson who runs it back for a TD. Sounds good huh?

How about the 2nd play of the game, Adam kicks off to Pitt and they muff it. It's picked up by the Pats and gets run in for another TD. Then, how about if Rothlesburger gets picked off on his first offensive series of the game? Before you know it, its 21-0 Pats in the first quarter. A total reversal of the Halloween game.

Visualize it Patriot Nation. Close your eyes and visualize it. Make your future.

"May, make, make it, make it. Make your future Danny. I'm, I'm a veg', Danny."

Wednesday, January 19, 2005

Ho Hum. It's Wed.

It's Wed. The AFC Championship is still a long way away. So in the meantime, what else is going on. Not a whole hell of a lot. Just killing time till 6:30 Sunday.

I have nothing to add to this picture. I just like it. So there you go.

Speaking of pictures, Sports Illustrated has Tedy Bruuuuuschi on the cover. That's pretty cool, but is SI trying to hex our team with one of those famous SI Cover Jinxes? Sneaky bastards. Knock that shit off SI. I know what you're up to. You tried that last year with Brady too. I remember. And it didn't work did it? No it did not. You should know better.

So. What else is goin on...

Nice to see Bellhorn and Arroyo signed, sealed and delivered for another year on the Sox. And hey, Bellhorn got a nice raise. Good for him. He was *only* making 400,000 and change last year. He is officially a millionaire now and gives working stiffs everywhere hope that they too can someday quadruple their salaries.. Seriously, I am glad to see Bellhorn get rewarded for his play last year. I thought Manny should have given Bellhorn a few mil just as a gift for bailing him out during Game 1 of the World Series after he tripped on a pebble in left field while trying to make a catch.

I predict the Eagles will lose another NFC Championship game. You heard it here folks. That gets me thinking, imagine if the Eagles really do lose this one and the Pats *hopefully beat the Steelers. People in Philadelphia would go out in the streets in a giant lynch mob looking for Andy Reid and Donvan Macnabb. The state of Pennsylvania would be collectively bummed out.

*Note to the Football Gods: Notice I said *hopefully* there. As always, thank you Football Gods.

Personally, I am abvivalent about the outcome of NFC game. It should be a great game to watch and I am looking forward to it but I don't really care who wins. I am leaning toward Atlanta. I like watching Michael Vick run around like a maniac. They have a good running back with Dunn. They are just a fun team to watch. But, if the Eagles win, that's fine too I guess... I suppose it would be better not to have lynch mobs roving the streets in Philly. Maybe I will root for Philly. I'm officially listing my NFC Rooting Preference as "Questionable". It will be a game day decision.

Finally, (I know you're probably saying, 'thank goodness' here) I think my iPod has psychic powers. I was listening to random songs on the way in to work and wanted to hear some Nirvana. Amazingly, the next random song that came up was a Nirvana song. And this is not the first time this has happened either... Pretty freaky stuff.

Speaking of iPods, you might have noticed I put some links to the iTunes store over there on the right. I was accepted as an iTunes Music Store affiliate recently, which is pretty cool. So feel free to click away and buy some tunes. That was a shameless plug in case you did not notice.

Have a great day! And Hey,

You stay classy Patriot Nation.

Monday, January 17, 2005

Who's da Man?

You da Man.

Thursday, January 13, 2005

Colts continue to stoke the flames, anger Football Gods...

Somehow I overlooked this little tidbit the other day. (This whole work thing keeps cutting in on my blog posting)

The Colts just keep stoking the flames and racheting up the annoyance level for the Pats. I remember last year before the AFC Championship, the Pats were so godamm sick of hearing nothing but Peyton Manning Peyton Manning Peyton Manning before the game, they were worked up into an absolute lather. I think Rodney Harrison's head was about ready to pop off he was getting so pissed..

I hope Belichick ordered a t-shirt for each player and had it draped in front of every locker.

It should be noted the Football Gods do not look kindly on this type of thing...


Wednesday, January 12, 2005

Vanderjerk. 'Vanderjerk' kicks off motivational melee for Pats

"He should focus on making the field goals, not worried about what we're doing over here, OK?' Harrison said. 'I mean, he has to be a jerk, Vanderjerk, if he sits there and criticizes Peyton Manning and Tony Dungy, one of the best quarterbacks in the game and one of the best coaches in the game. And then for him to put his foot in his mouth again just shows what type of character he has."

~ Rodney Harrison

Note to Vanderjackass: In case you have not figured it out yet,

Harrison is not somebody you want to piss off before a game or you might see a lot of this:

Here in Patriot Nation we like to call this "The Peyton Manning Face".

Keep it up though. We dont mind at all!

Sunday, January 09, 2005

Sometimes a picture can say a thousand words

The more things change...

The more they stay the same.

Sunday, December 26, 2004

Congrats to Corey Dillon - Pats single season rushing record owner

Congratulations to Corey Dillion, now the proud owner of the New England Patriots single season rushing record.

I find it fitting that Dillon wears jersey #28. I thought it was especially fitting for Dillon to get the record playing against the Jets and the former owner of that record, Curtis Martin.

Enjoy the playoffs Corey. I'm glad you are on my team. Hope to see you go all the way.

Side note:
Today was Joe Klecko day for the Jets. I have not heard much from Dan Klecko lately. Whats up with him and where has he been? I don't think he's hurt but I have not seen him playing. Is he in the doghouse for some reason? Am I not paying attention? Hmmm.

Tuesday, November 30, 2004

Dear Santa...

I'd like to amend my Christmas list

Monday, November 29, 2004

Thanks for coming by Baltimore. Next please?

Ok, so the Pats took care of Baltimore. I see no need for a big recap here. We all know the Pats kicked ass again and the desired result was accomplished. Jarvis' defensive TD was the most exciting part of the game and came just as I had gotten my son calmed down for bed. Needless to say, all the jumping and screaming that followed (by me, the supposed adult) did not help in that cause. Besides, there's always plenty of time to settle down when the game is over. Who can be expected to stay calm watching football?

Billick: I'm wet, my brain is sore from trying to match football wits with Bill, Charlie and Romey and my team logo is a Crow. Ouch.

Ok. Is it too early to be thinking of the playoff hunt? Nope. So here is the Pats remaining schedule.

Sun. Dec. 5 @Cleveland

Sun. Dec. 12 Cincinnati

Mon. Dec. 20 @Miami

Sun. Dec. 26 @NY Jets

Sun. Jan. 2 San Francisco

Hard to believe it but there are only 5 games left. I'm not going to jinx the team here, but let's just say, I'm not afraid of any of these teams. However, here are a few things to think about.

Cleveland. They will not be a pushover. They always play the Pats tough and have a good defense. Bill Belichick says so.

Cincy. Possible trap? Not for the Pats. The Pats don't fall for traps.

Miami. They'll be at home on Monday Night and playing for pride on the big national stage. They'll be wanting to play spoilers big time. It's nice that we get them at home in Dec instead of Sept for a change.

Jets. Another tough team on the road in the prime time, kick ass 4:00 time slot. This one will be definetly interesting. Gang-Green could be fighting for a wild-card spot here.

S.F. Oh, how the mighty have fallen. I remember back in the 80's watching the Nine-ers and wondering what it must be like to have a team like that be your team. Now I know. (sighs happily). Anyway. The key to this game will be to get it over with as soon as possible with no injuries. Again, no jinx inducing thoughts here, but hopefully home field for the playoffs will be locked up by this time.

Now lets check out Pittsburg's schedule:

Sun. Dec. 5 @Jacksonville

Sun. Dec. 12 - NY Jets

Sat. Dec. 18 - @NY Giants

Sun. Dec. 26 - Baltimore

Sun. Jan. 2 - @Buffalo

Any of these teams could trip the Steelers up. I see the potential for a Steelers loss against any of these teams except maybe the Giants. I'll keep my hopes up.


Monday, November 08, 2004


Bingo! I got Bingo!

Charlie Weis: Watch me pull a rabbit out of my hat!

Mike Martz: WTF?

On the subject of trick plays, I liked the trick Martz tried to pull with Bulger walking back to the sidelines like he was going to call a time out, then snapping the ball directly to Faulk. Whoops. The Pats didn't bite and Faulk got stuffed. Nice. God I love this team.

We're half way through the season and things are looking good. 7-1 at the midway point with a very favorable schedule ahead.

Sun 11/14/2004 08:30 PM vs Bills
Mon 11/22/2004 09:00 PM @ Chiefs
Sun 11/28/2004 01:00 PM vs Ravens
Sun 12/05/2004 01:00 PM @ Browns
Sun 12/12/2004 01:00 PM vs Bengals
Mon 12/20/2004 09:00 PM @ Dolphins
Sun 12/26/2004 04:15 PM @ Jets
Sun 01/02/2005 01:00 PM vs 49ers

There's some tough opponents in there but does anybody on this schedule really worry me. Nope.

Wanna make some picks?

Sunday, October 10, 2004

One win at a time...

18 times in a row...

Pats 24 - Miami 10 with 4:00 left.

I'm gonna throw caution to the wind here and say the World Champion New England Patriots are gonna get the win and the "unofficial" record, an incredible 19 wins in a row. I love this team.



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