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Richard Sherman takes shot at Robert Kraft-Roger Goodell relationship regarding Deflategate

01.26.15 at 1:02 am ET
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Robert Kraft

Robert Kraft

PHOENIX — The Seahawks wasted no time calling out the Patriots, as at their first availability in Arizona, Richard Sherman called out Robert Kraft when it comes to the Patriots’ possible discipline for Delfategate.

“Will they be punished? Probably not,” Sherman said. “Not as long as Robert Kraft and Roger Goodell are still taking pictures at their respective homes. I think it was just at Kraft’€™s house last week before the AFC championship, you know. Talk about conflict of interest.’€

Kraft supported Goodell in wake of the Ray Rice situation earlier this year, and has been a long time supporter of the commissioner.

Sherman said the events in New England this past week haven’t impacted the Seahawks‘ view of the Patriots at all.

‘€œIt was indifferent. It doesn’€™t really affect us at all,” said Sherman. “It wasn’€™t like we cared either way, honestly. It didn’€™t really affect us either way.’€

As for his injured elbow, Sherman says he will be good to go come next Sunday.

‘€œIt’€™s getting better. I had a good week of practice so it should be good,” he said.

For more Patriots news, check out weei.com/patriots.

Read More: 2015 NFL playoffs, Richard Sherman, Robert Kraft, Super Bowl XLIX

Julian Edelman is mentally ready to prepare for ‘ferocious’ Legion of Boom secondary

01.25.15 at 4:58 pm ET
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Julian Edelman (left) is looking to connect with Tom Brady often in the Super Bowl. (Jim Rogash/Getty Images)

Julian Edelman (left) is looking to connect with Tom Brady often in the Super Bowl. (Jim Rogash/Getty Images)

Julian Edelman is more than aware of the challenge ahead of him.

One of the best timing route receivers in the league has to find a way to get open against arguably the most physical secondary in football on the game’s biggest stage. Edelman hasn’t played against Seattle since 2012, when the “Legion of Boom” was coming into its own.

Cornerbacks Byron Maxwell and Richard Sherman and safeties Kam Chancellor and Earl Thomas present the biggest challenge Edelman has seen as a starting slot receiver in the NFL.

“They’€™re a little different because they’€™re all big,” Edelman said. “They’€™re all big, strong, ferocious players. They play in their scheme. They’€™re well coached. They play hard. We certainly have some guys that are big, but this a completely different group and like you said, I’€™ve never played against them. [We’€™ve] got to take these next few days [to] prepare [and] get ready for them and try to bring out the ‘A’ game.”

How does Edelman feel about the progress in the game plan so far?

“I feel good. Practice has had a high tempo; guys are focused,” Edelman said. “We still have a long way to go. We still have a few days out in Arizona to prepare so we’€™re going to try to take advantage of that. It’€™s been pretty good.”

This is Edelman’s second Super Bowl experience. Three years ago, Wes Welker had his job before leaving for Denver. Edelman was returning kicks and playing on special teams. He returned three kicks for 73 yards, including a 31-yarder. What did the experience in Super Bowl XLVI teach him about the crazy week leading up to the game?

“Just all the scheduling of everything, definitely being at one has helped,” Edelman said. “It’€™s always a little different every year I guess. I’€™m a little more familiar with what you’€™ve got going on when you’€™re there [and] being able to ignore a bunch of distractions and all that kind of stuff. It really is a business trip for us. [I’€™m] looking forward to that.”

Edelman made it clear that he’s anxious to get out to Arizona and take the game prep to the next level.

“Definitely. You’€™re anxious to get out there and kind of feel your surroundings, see what you’€™re going to be working with that week as far as facility, the meeting rooms,” Edelman said. “[You] don’€™t have to worry about anything else. You should have all your off-the-field stuff taken care of. You’€™re definitely anxious to get out there and start the preparing process out there. It’€™ll be nice to be in some 70-degree weather. That’€™s always nice. [We’€™ll] go out there and try to win the last game.

“Anytime you go to a Super Bowl it’€™s pretty exciting so I don’€™t know. I was really excited last time, I’€™m excited this time. Probably a little more focused this time as far as knowing what you have to do out there, knowing what’€™s going on ‘€“ experiencing all that kind of stuff. That’€™s how I feel about that question I guess.” Read the rest of this entry »

Read More: Julian Edelman, Legion of Boom, New England Patriots, nfl

Tom Brady (via Facebook video) asks: ‘Who’s with us?!’

01.25.15 at 4:26 pm ET
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Before taking off for Arizona on Monday for the Super Bowl, Tom Brady did a little social networking Sunday.

The Patriots embattled quarterback put out a call on Facebook, via a produced video, to rally Patriots fans around the organization.

Read More: 2015 playoffs, New England Patriots, Seattle Seahawks, Super Bowl XLIX

Reports: Patriots have perfect attendance in final practice of the season in Foxboro

01.25.15 at 2:27 pm ET
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Bryan Stork (center) raises his leg during warmups, prior to Thursday's Patriots practice. (Mike Petraglia/WEEI.com)

Bryan Stork (center) raises his leg during warmups, prior to Thursday’s Patriots practice. (Mike Petraglia/WEEI.com)

In their final Foxboro practice of the year and their last before departing for Super Bowl XLIX in Arizona, the Patriots had perfect attendance Sunday, according to multiple reports.

For a fourth straight day, the Patriots held their practice inside Dana-Farber Fieldhouse Sunday as they try to simulate game conditions inside University of Phoenix Stadium in Glendale next Sunday.

The Patriots had a full pads practice on Thursday, followed by a walkthrough on Friday and a pair of sweats and shells practice on Saturday and Sunday.

The Patriots officially listed six as questionable in Friday’s projected injury report, including rookie center Bryan Stork, who injured his knee in the divisional win over the Ravens. His continued participation in practice is a good sign that he will be ready to play in the Super Bowl.

Sunday’s practice was the 65th and final one of the season on their Foxboro campus. The next big event for the Patriots is Monday’s send-off rally at 11 a.m. at City Hall Plaza in Boston. The Patriots land in Arizona Monday afternoon and will be available to the media at that time.

Read More: Bryan Stork, New England Patriots, nfl, Seattle Seahawks

Bill Nye ‘Science Guy’ claims Bill Belichick ‘doesn’t make any sense’ in explanation

01.25.15 at 10:47 am ET
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Bill Belichick said the Patriots followed every rule to the letter. (Maddie Meyer/Getty Images).

Bill Belichick said the Patriots followed every rule to the letter. (Maddie Meyer/Getty Images).

And so it continues.

Less than a day after Bill Belichick offered his explanation of the team’s scientific investigation and study of Deflategate, a scientific expert has come forward and accused the Patriots coach of being flat out ignorant.

Bill Nye, a mechanical engineer who worked at Boeing before becoming TV’€™s ‘€œBill Nye The Science Guy,’€ was a guest on Sunday’€™s “Good Morning America,” claiming Belichick’s explanation “doesn’€™t make any sense.”

[Bill Belichick‘s entire press conference, including explanation is listed below]

Belichick did get validation from another science think tank based in Pittsburgh that includes experts from Carnegie Mellon. Thomas Healy, founder of HeadSmart Labs, claims that the conditions of the AFC title game would have caused a significant drop in air pressure by result of their simulation.

“We took 12 brand new authentic NFL footballs and exposed them to the different elements they would have experienced throughout the game.’€ said Healy, a masters student in mechanical engineering at Carnegie Mellon. “Out of the 12 footballs we tested, we found that on average, footballs dropped 1.8 PSI when being exposed to dropping temperatures and wet conditions.”

“During testing, 12 brand new footballs were inflated to 12.5 PSI in a 75 degree Fahrenheit room. This was to imitate the indoor conditions where the referees would have tested the footballs 2 hours and 15 minutes before kickoff. The footballs were then moved to a 50 degree Fahrenheit environment to simulate the temperatures that were experienced throughout the game. In addition, the footballs were dampened to replicate the rainy conditions.”

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Read More: Bill Belichick, Bill Nye, Bill Nye Science Guy, New England Patriots

Dont’a Hightower knows Marshawn Lynch will throw ‘a little bit of everything’ at Patriots D

01.25.15 at 10:19 am ET
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Dont'a Hightower and the Patriots will have to tackle well to contain Marshawn Lynch. (Joel Auerbach/Getty Images)

Dont’a Hightower and the Patriots will have to tackle well to contain Marshawn Lynch. (Joel Auerbach/Getty Images)

Patriots linebacker Dont’a Hightower has seen enough of Marshawn Lynch to know he and his Patriots teammates better be in tackle mode next Sunday to stop Beastmode.

Hightower doesn’t need to look at Lynch’s regular season accomplishments of 1,306 yards and a career-best 13 touchdowns. All Hightower has to do is watch game film of how he’s been running in the playoffs.

In two postseason games, the All-Pro running back has carried the ball 39 times for 216 yards and a touchdown, including the go-ahead score in the fourth quarter of the NFC championship game against Green Bay, a team he sliced through for 157 yards. He is averaging 5.5 yards every time he touches the ball.

When defenses know he’s going to get the ball, what specifically makes him so difficult to defend?

“A little bit of everything. He’€™s aggressive, he’€™s strong, he’€™s got great vision, great balance, good feet ‘€“ he has everything that you would want in a back,” Hightower said. “His feet never stop moving no matter what he’€™s doing, whether it’€™s picking up blocks in protection or getting out on a screen pass or a check down. He’€™s always looking to make that big play.”

Hightower laughed Saturday when asked about how elusive Lynch can be in answering questions from the media.

“I think everybody’€™s seen that,” Hightower said. “I think it’€™s apparent that [he] doesn’€™t want to talk to the media. It is what it is. A lot of guys don’€™t want to, but you’€™ve kind of got to.”

Does Hightower think it’€™s funny?

“Yeah, I think it’€™s funny,” Hightower said. “I’€™m pretty sure you all think it’€™s funny, too, so don’€™t just put me up here and act like I’€™m the only one. But it is.”

But Hightower knows tackling Lynch in Glendale will be no joke.

Hightower is second on the Patriots in the playoffs with 11 total tackles so far, trailing Jamie Collins’ 15. Both linebackers will have to make sure to wrap up Lynch, who ranked fifth this season among running backs in the NFL with 639 yards after contact.

“Of course, especially tackling Lynch or Wilson or [Doug] Baldwin. They have great skill players who all have big-play impact,” Hightower said. “If you go back and you watch film, a lot of those plays were to get the ball to them real quick and out in space. Any time they can do that, they’€™re willing to take advantage of it, and that’€™s something they want, is to have that big-play ability.

“Again, everybody kind of looks at Lynch and thinks that he’€™s just an aggressor and wants to run everybody over. That might be his game, but I see it as both. He’€™ll run you over to get where he wants to get, but you never see him run out of bounds. He’€™s always looking to cut back and make those big plays and those 80- and those 70-yard touchdowns that you see. He does everything.” Read the rest of this entry »

Read More: 2015 playoffs, Dont'a Hightower, New England Patriots, Seattle Seahawks

Despite season-ending injury, Jerod Mayo still helping out defense

01.25.15 at 8:30 am ET
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FOXBORO — Unfortunately for Jerod Mayo he cannot play in the postseason for a second straight year, as for a second straight year he suffered a season-ending injury. But, that doesn’t mean Mayo has stopped playing a part in the success of the team.

Mayo tore his patellar tendon in Week 6 against the Bills, but he’s still helped out his fellow linebackers and defense, as the defensive captain has remained around the facility watching film, and even was on the sidelines in the last two playoff games — something unusual for an injured reserve player to be on the sidelines on a Bill Belichick coached team.

Linebacker Dont’a Hightower has really appreciated what Mayo has been able to do despite his injury.

“He’€™s meant a lot,” Hightower said Saturday. “I mean, even before the injury, he was still a coach on the field to us, and he’€™s been a real big part, especially last week and the week before with helping me and Jamie [Collins] see things on the sidelines and giving us adjustments. Matty P [defensive coordinator Matt Patricia] has a big job on the sideline with talking to Bill and B Flo [safeties coach Brian Flores] and everybody, so Mayo has really helped that front seven just as far as seeing side things on the sideline.”

On WEEI this week Mayo talked about being on the sidelines and how he was able to calm the defense down in their win over Baltimore, as the Patriots trailed by 14 points on two occasions.

‘€œI just tried to keep the guys calm,” Mayo said. “I know it’€™s a long game and sometimes things don’€™t go your way,’€ said Mayo of what he did in the Baltimore game. ‘€œI try and keep everybody calm and obviously I can see things from the sideline that you can’€™t really see on the field. It’€™s difficult to see the entire field when you’€™re out there looking at certain keys. I can see a lot of things on the sideline and I just try to rely some of the things that I see to the guys.’€

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Read More: 2015 NFL playoffs, Dont'a Hightower, Super Bowl XLII, Super Bowl XLIX
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