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Right shoulder leaves Tom Brady ‘limited’ in Thursday practice

10.24.13 at 4:27 pm ET
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FOXBORO ‘€” The addition of Tom Brady (right shoulder) was the only change to the Patriots injury report for Thursday. The New England quarterback joined a group that included cornerback Aqib Talib (hip), tight end Rob Gronkowski (back/forearm) and wide receiver Danny Amendola (concussion/groin) listed as limited in Thursday’s workout.

In addition, defensive lineman Tommy Kelly (knee) and running back/returner Leon Washington sat out practice for the second straight day.

Here’€™s the full report:

Did Not Practice
DL Tommy Kelly (knee)
RB/KR Leon Washington (ankle)

Limited Participation
WR Danny Amendola (concussion/groin)
RB Brandon Bolden (knee)
QB Tom Brady (right shoulder)
OL Marcus Cannon (shoulder)
WR Julian Edelman (thigh)
TE Rob Gronkowski (back/forearm)
TE Michael Hoomanawanui (knee)
WR Matthew Slater (wrist)
CB Aqib Talib (hip)
DB Tavon Wilson (hamstring)

Full Participation
CB Kyle Arrington (groin)
CB Devin McCourty (shoulder)
DL Rob Ninkovich (groin)

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Logan Ryan apologizes to fans for grab: ‘That’s not who I am’

10.24.13 at 2:18 pm ET
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FOXBORO — It was pretty apparent Thursday that the leaders on the Patriots got to rookie Logan Ryan and discussed his inappropriate crotch grab celebration on his pick-6 last Sunday. Safe to say, it won’t be happening again.

“First off, I just want to apologize to all the fans and all the viewers who had to witness that,” Ryan said. “I own up to it 100 percent. It’s not acceptable, not acceptable for me and this team. I want to put it behind me and want to move on and focus on Miami and let people know it won’t happen again and that’s not who I am.

“It was a good play. It was a play where all 11 people on the field were doing their job. It was a great call and we had an opportunity. I had an opportunity to make the play and I did and it helped the team at the time.”

As for his accountability to his teammates and the organization?

“I want to be held accountable for this,” Ryan continued. “I think I have a lot of football in me in the future, and I just want to make the most of it and make the most of my opportunities in the future.”

Ryan made a point of praising the veterans who have taught him the ropes so far in the NFL.

“It’s been a lot of fun, it’s been a learning experience,” Ryan said. “I have a lot to learn and a lot to grow but I’m surrounded by great players on our team, and that’s in the secondary with Devin McCourty, Kyle Arrington, Aqib Talib and even Alfonzo Dennard. They’ve been playing extremely great ball and we want to continue that.

“It slows down week-by-week with repetition. That starts in practice. I’m practicing better than I have in the past. And I think as I practice better, I’ll play better and it will continue to slow down. I just learn a lot about the little things, how to prepare during the week, the things that go unnoticed and you do a lot of little things right, it adds up and make plays [possible] on Sundays.”

Read More: Logan Ryan, New England Patriots, New York Jets, nfl

Tom Brady wants everyone to know his mechanics ‘feel really good’

10.24.13 at 12:35 pm ET
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FOXBORO — When there’s a perception out there that you’re struggling at quarterback in the NFL, you’re going to come under close scrutiny – even if you are Tom Brady.

The Patriots quarterback heard the questions this week about his mechanics and his production, both of which are way off so far this year from his statistical norm.

Only once this year in seven game has Brady’s quarterback rating been over 100. Twice, both losses, it’s been in the 50s, 52.2 vs. Bengals and 53.5 against the Jets. His completion rate is just above 55 percent. He’s on pace for 3,800 yards passing, which would be his lowest for a full season since 3,529 yards in 2006, the year that brought change in the next season in the form of Randy Moss and Wes Welker.

Does he feel like his mechanics are good?

“Yeah, I feel really good,” Brady said Wednesday.

“There are definitely times where I need to put more arc on the ball,” Brady added. “That definitely helps. Sometimes it is decision making and sometimes it is execution and throws. Sometimes you try to drive and you don’€™t drive it, or sometimes you drive it and you shouldn’€™t have driven it. But it’€™s just, what is the coverage, and how do you envision the ball getting to the receiver? When we don’€™t hit them, you always evaluate them and you think, ‘€˜Man I’€™ve got to do a better job. I wish I put a little more on this one.’€™ Some you wish you had done better, and some are pretty good. You are always trying to work to improve those things.

“You have to be aware of where the other players are on the field. If there is a safety that may not be involved with the particular receiver, but the safeties have a lot of bearing on how the quarterbacks throw the ball. The longer the ball is in the air, the more the safety has a chance to impact the play. So, sometimes you don’€™t want the safety to be involved so you drive it a little more. When they are not involved, you can put a little more air on it. Ultimately, whatever it takes to complete the ball that is what you are trying to do. Certainly there are some throws that I would like to do a lot of things different on. Whether I throw inside or outside or low or high, you’€™re just trying to complete it the best you can.”

Brady lost his longtime quarterback guru Tom Martinez to a kidney disease just after Brady’s last Super Bowl in Feb. 2012. Brady now consults former major league pitcher Tom House in an effort to go over his throwing mechanics. Brady was asked Wednesday how much he evaluates the mechanical work that you did in the offseason.

“Well, you’€™re just trying to work on getting the team in the end zone most of all,” Brady said. “You have to try to be a football player and not think about [or] overdo things. When we do it well, it looks good and we get the ball in the end zone, and when we don’€™t there are definitely things we need to improve on, because our goal is to score points. When we don’€™t score as many points then we’€™re not doing as good a job as we need to. We’€™re 5-2 and we’€™ve got a big opponent coming in, so hopefully we go out and play our best. Certainly I expect to go out there and play as best I can. That would be hugely important for the team.”

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Patriots practice Thursday: Tommy Kelly (knee), Leon Washington (ankle) only absentees

10.24.13 at 11:34 am ET
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FOXBORO — The only two players not spotted Thursday at sweats and shells practice were running back Leon Washington (ankle) and defensive lineman Tommy Kelly (knee). Washington and Kelly were both injured on Oct. 6 in Cincinnati and have missed the last two games.

Danny Amendola returned to practice Wednesday and was again present Thursday on the grass fields outside Gillette Stadium for the first time since sustaining a concussion on Oct. 13 against the Saints.

He suffered a viscous hit to the helmet from New Orleans safety Rafael Bush in the second half and missed all of last week, including the game against the Jets.

Also in attendance for a third straight practice was Aqib Talib, as he tries to make his way back from a hip injury against the Saints.

Running back Brandon Bolden (knee) again spent time on an exercise bike during positional drills at the start of practice.

Read More: Leon Washington, Miami Dolphins, New England Patriots, nfl

Report: NFL fines Logan Ryan $10,000 for grabbing himself

10.24.13 at 11:07 am ET
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FOXBORO — The move by rookie Logan Ryan to grab himself in mid-air as he was falling into the end zone on his first career interception will cost him, according to a report from Pro Football Talk.

The website, quoting a league source, says the rookie will be fined $10,000 for the on-field gesture as he ended his pick-6 of Geno Smith.

Ryan, a third-round pick out of Rutgers, has been seeing more playing time with the hip injury to Aqib Talib. Last week, he played corner in nickel situations and his read of the Smith pass resulted in a 79-yard interception return in the first quarter that gave the Patriots a 14-7 lead.

The move by Ryan is not unique in NFL circles. Marshawn Lynch grabbed himself and fell into the end zone in the 2010 playoffs after he steamrolled Darren Sharper.

Read More: Geno Smith, Logan Ryan, New England Patriots, New York Jets

Five things you need to know about the Dolphins

10.24.13 at 9:00 am ET
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1. They have a hard time protecting quarterback Ryan Tannehill. Tannehill does a good job evading the rush — he’s a former college wide receiver who has pretty good footwork — but he’s still had little luck when it comes to protection. He’s been sacked 26 times through the first six games of the season, and is on pace to absorb 69 sacks over the course of the 2013 season. (To give you some perspective, Tom Brady took a career-high 41 sacks in 2001.) The Dolphins made something of a panic move earlier in the week when they traded for tackle Bryant McKinnie, swinging a deal with the Ravens for the perennial underachiever. The Patriots don’t necessarily have an elite pass rush, but the opportunities should be there for Chandler Jones (a team-leading 6.5 sacks and 13 quarterback hits through the first seven games), as well as fellow defensive end Rob Ninkovich (who leads the team with 20 quarterback hurries, according to Pro Football Focus).

2. As a result of those protection problems, Tannehll has had ball security issues. The quarterback has fumbled the ball away seven times through the first six games of the season, and that, combined with a penchant for some ill-timed interceptions — he has seven, tied for sixth in the league — has led to issues for the Dolphins. The Patriots, who have forced turnovers in 34 consecutive games, will also have opportunities to force takeaways. New England enters the game with a plus-five takeaway ration, good enough to be tied for fourth in the AFC with the Bills.

3. They are below average when it comes to running the ball. New England should be able to breathe relatively easy when it comes to the Miami running game, as the Dolphins do not pose much of a threat when it comes to their ground game. Miami is 25th in the league when it comes to average rushing yards per game with 78.0. (The Dolphins average a relatively respectable 3.9 yards per carry, 16th in the league.) Lamar Miller is perhaps their best back, as he has 59 carries for 254 yards (4.3 ypc) and two touchdowns. A 5-foot-10, 216-pounder, he had a season-high in a Sept. 15 win over the Colts.

4. They have struggled to defend tight ends. The Dolphins have had issues trying to slow down some of the NFL’s best young tight ends at the start of the 2013 season. Jimmy Graham of the Saints lit them up for four catches for 100 yards and two touchdowns in Week 4, while Cleveland’s Jordan Cameron had nine catches for 108 yards and a touchdown in Week 1 and Indy’s Coby Fleener had four catches for 69 yards and a touchdown in Week 2. In all, they’ve allowed four passing touchdowns to tight ends in six games. That’s bad news when you’re facing someone like Gronkowski, who had eight catches (on 17 targets) for 114 yards in his regular-season debut last week against the Jets.

5. They’re a smart, well-disciplined team when it comes to penalties. The Dolphins have played six games to this point in the season, and they are tied with the Vikings for the league low in penalties assessed with 25, and have been assessed the smallest amount of penalty yardage (212). The Patriots aren’t much worse — they have played one more game than Miami, and are 25th in the league in total penalties (33) and 20th in the league in penalty yardage lost (342).

Read More: Ryan Tannehill,

Dolphins coach Joe Philbin: Don’t tell me Patriots’ offense is struggling

10.24.13 at 7:15 am ET
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FOXBORO — Don’t tell Dolphins coach Joe Philbin that the Patriots’ offense has problems.

Despite the fact that New England has struggled recently on third down, as well as some of their issues when it comes to scoring in the second half, Philbin, speaking on a conference call with the New England media on Wednesday, said there’s a lot to like about the state of the Patriots’ offense. Just take your pick.

“I think their offensive line is very good. I think Dante Scarnecchia is one of the best offensive line coaches in the National Football League,” he said. “I like the balance that they have — they’€™ve got their tight end back who they target and can make plays all over the field.  I think they’€™re young receivers are getting better. (Stevan) Ridley is a good back and obviously their quarterback is as good as there is in the game. It’€™s a talented group and it’€™s a well coached group.’€

Philbin said if there are issues, some of it could be in the fact that they’re in a state of transition, moving from a passing game that was centered around the likes of Wes Welker, Aaron Hernandez and Rob Gronkowski to one that features some younger receivers, as well as a tight end in Gronkowski who is returning to the field just now after a prolonged absence because of offseason surgery.

‘€œI think they’€™re just working through [it],” Philbin said. “All teams in the National Football League have to deal with transition. They’€™re no different, we’€™re no different. And I think they’€™ve worked through that nicely, and I think they’€™ve got a good group and they’€™re making nice progress on offense.’€

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