|03.18.14 at 1:20 pm ET|
Wide receiver Julian Edelman, who agreed to a new four-year deal with the Patriots over the weekend, told WAAF’s Hill-Man Morning Show that he’s happy to be returning to New England after dipping his toes in the waters of free agency. To hear the interview, go to the WAAF audio page.
“It’s a good day,” Edelman said from his California home. “It’s a good day to be back. It’s awesome that I get to be there for another four years.”
Added Edelman: “It’s a great situation how everything worked out. I can’t wait to get started and get back into town and jump on the horse, because we got knocked off last year, and get back to work.”
A native of the San Francisco area, Edelman had a visit with the 49ers last week, but he said his heart was with the Patriots.
“It wasn’t that tough [to decide], to tell you the truth,” Edelman said. “You go on these visits and these trips and everything and you see these wonderful organizations. I got to go home and see the Niners, and I grew up a huge Niners fan, but being in New England for the last five years, that’s just home. That’s just home for me right now. Just the way, the mentality, the team, how everything’s done, the scheme, the players, the locker room, the fans — it’s something that I couldn’t leave. I’m really glad that we were able to work something out and bring me back.”
With the Patriots, Edelman reunites with fellow Northern California product Tom Brady.
“When you get to come to work and play with one of the best, it makes it a lot easier,” Edelman said. “Especially with the kind of player and person Brady — along with a lot of other guys on the team. The teammates were definitely a huge part of that. Having the year that we had last year, we got so close and we overcame adversity and all that stuff. Hopefully we’re going to build on that and do even better.”
Following are more highlights from the interview. For more Patriots news, visit the team page at weei.com/patriots.
On the acquisition of Darrelle Revis: “He’s the best in the league. There’s usually like two or three types of corners in the National Football League. You have guys that are long, lanky, that are good at the line of scrimmage, quicker than fast, long speed, good transition. When he’s healthy he seems to have all that. He’s always very tough to compete against. It’s great to have him join the team.”
On Vince Wilfork reportedly asking to be released rather than rework his contract: “I can’t speak on that. Personally, that’s not my job on this team to make those kinds of decisions and that stuff. Obviously Vince is a great player. He’s a good friend of mine. Of course you want a guy like that around. But I don’t know what’s going on between them.”
|03.18.14 at 12:48 pm ET|
Here are some contract numbers for both Brandon LaFell and Julian Edelman:
According to Mike Garafolo of Fox Sports, Edelman received a four-year deal with $17 million in base salary. In addition, there are roughly $2 million in incentives and $8 million guaranteed.
Albert Breer of NFL Network reports that LaFell’s deal with New England is a base salary of $9 million over three years, with $3 million guaranteed. In addition, his cap hits over the three years of the deal are $2 million (2014), $3.2 million (2015) and $3.8 million (2016).
|03.18.14 at 10:12 am ET|
WEEI.com will continue to offer daily insight and analysis regarding options that may be available to the Patriots when it comes to the 2014 NFL draft. Here is one in a series of profiles of players who could be on the board when it’s time for the Patriots to make a selection.
Position: Wide receiver
Weight: 195 pounds
Achievements: 2012 Biletnikoff Award winner, 2012 Paul Warfield Award, 2012 unanimous first-team All-American, 2012 Pac-12 Offensive Player of the Year
What he brings: Despite his recent history of injuries and smaller frame, Lee has the speed and understanding that allowed him to win the Biletnikoff Award, given to the best wide receiver in the NCAA, as a sophomore. Scouts look at Lee’s route-running ability and vision as reasons for why he will still go in the first round of the draft.
Where the Patriots could get him: Lee is likely a top-20 pick, so the Patriots would have to trade up to get him.
Notes: After a standout sophomore campaign, Lee struggled during the 2013 season with injuries. The junior injured his shoulder during training camp before suffering a knee injury in September. He finished the season with 57 receptions for 791 yards and four touchdowns. … Lee, who also competes for USC’s track team, owns or shares 22 school records.
Los Angeles Times: Marqise Lee’s stats are down, but he remains a top NFL prospect
Video: Here is a highlight reel of Lee’s 2013 season
|03.18.14 at 6:30 am ET|
Brandon Spikes is already dreaming about facing his old team.
‘It’s going to be emotional for me,’ the former Patriots linebacker said in his first session with Buffalo reporters on Monday. ‘I’ve dreamt about it already. I believe it’ll be an emotional game. I’ll probably be in tears the entire game. I know it’s going to be a battle. It’s definitely going to be a battle for all time. I’m looking forward to that, and I’ll definitely be dreaming about it every night until it comes this fall.’
Spikes, who was drafted by the Patriots in 2010 and played four years in New England, signed a free agent deal with the Bills as a free agent earlier this month. On Monday, he explained why he decided to leave Foxboro, saying that former Patriots and current Buffalo assistant Pepper Johnson played major role in his decision-making process.
“He’s a great coach and a great inspiration to the game. He loves the game and he is definitely what I want to be down the road,” Spikes said. “He’s a legendary ballplayer and coach. He just knows the game. I respect him as a man and as a coach.”
One thing that continues to stick in his craw is the perception is that he’s a two-down linebacker, a player who needs to leave the field on third down and other passing situations.
‘I played on it if they gave me the opportunity and I delivered when I was out there,’ he said when asked about his work on third down while in New England. ‘Obviously, we went to the Super Bowl, and I had one of the best games on third downs even though we lost. That whole entire season when I was given the opportunity and play on third down, I delivered.
“Like I said, that’s in the past and now I’m just here to change all that. Prove people wrong, if that’s what they’d like to say. I’m just ready to go play the game I love. Everybody don’t have an opportunity to have their dream and play. I’m just happy to have this opportunity and be in this situation to play the game I love.’
That being said, he still takes a lot of pride in his work as a run stopper.
‘If you can stop the run, you’ll make a team one dimensional,’ he said. ‘I know a lot of people are saying the league is passing now and it’s pass, but as you can see in the playoffs everybody just starts running the ball. (You need) a run stopper that can take that away like in the playoffs late in the season when the weather becomes a factor and stuff like that. It’s big and it seems like the last couple of Super Bowl winners have had a great run game.
“I think that’s key — if you can make a team one dimensional and force them to pass, I feel like you have the edge.’
Spikes inked a one-year deal, but he says that only serves as more motivation.
“My whole life I’ve had something to prove so it just helps put some fuel on the fire,” Spikes said. “It keeps that burning sensation I have inside of me for the game and, like I said, whatever, if they say I have something to prove, I just have to go out there and do it.”
|03.17.14 at 11:32 pm ET|
Speaking with the Patriots team website on Monday, Patriots owner Robert Kraft said he was “excited” about the acquisition of cornerback Darrelle Revis.
“I think everyone associated with the team and all of our fans throughout New England are excited about (Darrelle) Revis joining us,” Kraft said in video posted here. “He’s obviously the best, or one of the top two or three shutdown corners (in the game).
“We’re very happy he chose to play with our team,” Kraft added. “I think it’s a great tribute to our head coach, our quarterback and all the players on our team that he really had a choice to go anywhere he wanted and he chose to come here.”
Patriots personnel chief Nick Caserio called Revis a “productive player” who has had success in multiple systems.
“He’s been a productive player,” Caserio said. “He’s got good size, he runs well, he’s good at the line of scrimmage. He’s played in a couple of different systems and he’s been productive in multiple systems. He was productive when he was with the Jets, and he was productive last season down there in Tampa, so we’ll put him in the mix and see how his skills translate to what we’re doing, and see how it goes when we get him and we start working with him.”
For more Patriots news, check out weei.com/patriots.
|03.17.14 at 6:19 pm ET|
WEEI.com will continue to offer daily insight and analysis regarding options that may be available to the Patriots when it comes to the 2014 NFL draft. Here is one is a series of profiles of players who could be on the board when it’s time for the Patriots to make a selection.
Position: Tight end
School: Texas Tech
Weight: 260 pounds
Achievements: 2013 All-America, 2013, 2012 All-Big 12 Conference first team, NCCA Division 1 record-holder for most receiving yards by a tight end (1,352)
What he brings: Amaro is a receiving tight end who is considered very athletic and has been noted for having good hands. During his time at Texas Tech, he was rarely used as a blocker, lining up in the slot the majority of the time. Amaro suffered a spleen injury in 2012 that caused him to miss time. There are concerns about Amaro’s maturity, specifically anger issues.
Where the Patriots could get him: Round 1
Notes: Amaro put up impressive statistics as a senior in 2013, recording 106 catches for 1,352 yards and seven touchdowns. … Amaro is from Texas and went to MacArthur High School in San Antonio. He tore his ACL during his junior year in high school. … He combined for 32 catches, 466 yards and six touchdowns during his freshman and sophomore years at Tech. … Amaro is considered one of the two best tight ends in the draft. Many draft experts have mocked Amaro to the Patriots with the 29th pick.
Houston Chronicle: Amaro’s talent soars as temper wanes at Tech
USA Today: Junior tight end Jace Amaro and Texas Tech proving doubters wrong
Video: Here are highlights of Amaro vs. Arizona State during the 2013 Holiday Bowl.
|03.17.14 at 5:43 pm ET|
Cornerback Brandon Browner said Monday he was excited for a fresh start with the Patriots.
“I’ll say a little, but I don’t think I want to go into the details for the simple fact that I want to keep that behind me and move on forward from that situation,” Browner said when asked about his recent suspension for violating the league’s policy on performance enhancers, a ban that will cause him to miss the first four games of the 2014 season.
“Like I said before, I just want to contribute to the Pats and leave that in the past. What I can say is that for the last few months, my future has been in a dark place. I made a few mistakes and that’s one of the mistakes I regret. I look forward to righting my wrongs and I’m blessed at the opportunity to come play in New England and start on a good foot, so to say.”
Browner will sit for the first four games of the 2014 regular season, but says he’s going to do everything he can to get up to speed between now and then to make the transition easier.
“This is something I knew I was going to have to deal with. It’s as simple as that — it’s something that I’m going to have to deal with,” he said. “I’m going to try my best with the time I get, as far as mini-camps, offseason workouts. Up until that point, I’m going to give it all I got to try to learn the system. What’s so unique is, a lot of the stuff I’ll be doing on defense I did in Seattle. The only thing that changed is the terminology. I was also told that we play a lot of man-to-man, which is my strong suit. I’ll take it in stride and I can’t wait to get back out there.”
One question about Browner is where he will be playing. He’s made his bones as a cornerback, but his size (6-foot-4, 221 pounds), as well as the fact that he’s played safety for a short time in the past at the NFL level has fueled speculation that he might play some safety in New England. Asked about it on Monday, it sounds like he’s pretty well set at corner, at least for now.
“No, they haven’t talked to me about playing safety. So far, I’m here to play cornerback,” he said. “I’ll play wherever need be. I just want to play football and I’m fortunate to be playing for a team like the Pats.”
Here are some of the rest of the highlights from his Q&A Monday afternoon:
Read the rest of this entry »
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