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Fred Taylor, Mike Wright among missing at Pats practice

10.08.10 at 12:35 pm ET
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FOXBORO — Running back Fred Taylor, cornerback Terrence Wheatley, offensive lineman Nick Kaczur and defensive lineman Mike Wright were all missing from the start of Patriots practice on Friday outside of Gillette Stadium.

Read More: Fred Taylor, Mike Wright, nick kaczur, Patriots

Poll: Which player should replace Randy Moss?

10.08.10 at 12:00 pm ET
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Which player would you prefer to see the Patriots use as a replacement for Randy Moss?

  • Vincent Jackson (27%, 179 Votes)
  • Brandon Tate (27%, 177 Votes)
  • Deion Branch (25%, 163 Votes)
  • Aaron Hernandez (9%, 56 Votes)
  • Troy Brown (6%, 40 Votes)
  • None of the above (6%, 39 Votes)

Total Voters: 654

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Read More: Aaron Hernandez, Deion Branch, Randy Moss, Vincent Jackson

Adam Schefter on D&C: No Vincent Jackson, maybe Deion Branch

10.08.10 at 11:31 am ET
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Adam Schefter

Adam Schefter

When ESPN’s Adam Schefter joined the Dennis & Callahan show Friday morning, the talk was predictably dominated by Randy Moss. But the chat began with a rumored replacement for the departed receiver, Vincent Jackson. Schefter didn’t view a move as realistic.

“Vincent Jackson is not heading [to the Patriots],” said Schefter. “You look at it and you say it makes sense. It’s just not going to happen. It’s just not going to happen. I know it continues to be thrown out there that it’s been looked into and all that. My final answer on this would be: I’ll believe it when I see it.”

Schefter said it’s a combination of Jackson’s contract demands, his two recent DUI charges, and the questionable role model he would serve to the Patriots’ young players that stand in the way of this deal. “I think it’s more all of the above,” said Schefter, before focusing more on the money issue. “Let’s be honest here, the Patriots have paid a lot of money to Tom Brady. They paid a lot of money to Vince Wilfork. Logan Mankins remains unsigned. They spent some money, and Vincent Jackson, you’re going to have to spend roughly $50 million, $9 [million], $10 million a year on a wide receiver that’s one strike away from a yearlong suspension.

“On top of that,” Schefter continued, “San Diego is adamant that it get back a second- and third-round pick, and New England has done a tremendous job stockpiling picks. I don’t think it’s in the business of looking to unload those picks for a premium-priced player when we may have all these picks in a draft that’s incredibly rich in talent and in which there may be a rookie cap and you get basically these guys under contract at a bargain rate.

When asked about the certainty factor Jackson provides, as compared to a rookie, Schefter added, “It’s a business, too. People sometimes forget it because it’s their football team and it’s their passion, it’s their love and it’s in their soul. And I get all that. But there’s also people that use this as a business. It’s not fantasy football. You just don’t just go trade for Vincent Jackson because you want him playing wide receiver and he’s a great player. It goes beyond that.”

Following is a full transcript of the interview, including discussion about the likelihood of a Deion Branch return, why Moss left, and the future of football next season. To listen, visit the Dennis & Callahan audio on demand page.

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Read More: adam schefter, Randy Moss, vikings, Vincent Jackson

Stephen Neal on D&H: ‘I trust’ Bill Belichick

10.08.10 at 10:49 am ET
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Stephen Neal

Stephen Neal

Patriots offensive lineman Stephen Neal checked in with the Dale & Holley show Friday morning. To hear the interview, go to the Dale & Holley audio on demand page.

Asked if he understood why Randy Moss was traded to the Vikings, Neal said he had no insight. “Just going in different direction, I guess,” he said. “I don’t know why. But whatever Bill [Belichick] says, he’s got a reason. I trust him.”

Neal said he’s never attempted to go to the coaches or the front office to find out why certain decisions are made. Said Neal: “I’m kind of like a POW — you don’t want to know too much information. That way, you’re not lying to people when they ask you. So, I don’t know, not that I even care to know. What the situation is, it’s none of my business. My business is to go out there and perform, and that’s what I intend to do.”

Neal said he never saw Moss as a disruptive influence. “I don’t believe so,” he said. “Every player has a different personality. I never had any problems with Randy. I really enjoyed his company.”

Added Neal: “He was great, man. I really look up to Randy. He’s a great guy, a leader on and off the field. I just really enjoy being around him. … He’s a good guy, a guy I have a lot of respect for.”

Read More: Bill Belichick, Randy Moss, Stephen Neal,

Nuggetpalooza’s bye week NFL preview

10.08.10 at 8:43 am ET
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nuggetpalooza-small2Since the Patriots are on their bye week, here’s an expanded “Around the NFL,” going game-by-game:

—————————————————————————————————————————–

Jaguars at Bills

* – Buffalo averaged 7.13 yards per rush last week, the highest in the NFL and the highest by a Bills team since 2001 (min. 15 carries). It was the Bills’ highest average at home since 1992. Last week was the first time that the Bills have rushed at least 15 times without getting stuffed (i.e. losing yardage) since the 2003 season.

* – The Bills are 4th in the NFL in first-down efficiency as they have gained 4 or more yards on 54.9 percent of their first-down plays, including 65 percent vs. the Jets last Sunday. Their offense is pretty much downhill from there, though.

* – The Jaguars have gone three-and-out on just 6.7 percent of their possessions this season, the lowest percentage in the league. Buffalo has gone three-and-out 34.1 percent of the time, the highest percentage in the league. Buffalo’s total includes seven such possessions last week.

* – The Bills have allowed 9.3 rushing first downs per game this season (worst in the NFL), while Jacksonville has averaged 8.5 rushing first downs on offense (third best).

* – Jaguars opponents have had 10 “goal to go” drives this season and have scored a touchdown on all 10. New England is the only other team to have as many as five such opponent drives and allow 100 percent touchdowns.

* – Buffalo’s is the only 2010 defense without an interception.

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Jerod Mayo on D&C: Randy Moss ‘a great teammate’

10.08.10 at 7:27 am ET
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Jerod Mayo

Jerod Mayo

Patriots linebacker Jerod Mayo made his weekly appearance on the Dennis & Callahan show Friday morning and talked about the Randy Moss trade. To hear the interview, check the Dennis & Callahan audio on demand page.

Asked on a scale of 1-10 how surprised he was when he founds out Moss was sent to the Vikings, Mayo said: “I’d say about an 8. But at the end of the day, it’s the nature of the business.”

Mayo said he did not have any insight as to why Moss was traded, and he considered the receiver a friend. “He wasn’t a distraction at all,” Mayo said. “He’s a great teammate. Great in the locker room. To my knowledge, he hadn’t done anything wrong, as far as in the locker room.”

With Moss out of the equation, Brandon Tate is expected to become a much bigger part of the offense. “He’s a good player, hungry to learn,” Mayo said. “And we have other guys like Julian Edelman who are ready to step up and make plays.”

Mayo said the players haven’t lost any confidence in the team, despite what some prognosticators might be saying. “I don’t think guys are really thinking like that. … I hear guys talking all the time, ‘We’re still a good team, still have a chance.’ It’s not like we’re giving up. We’re going to go out and play hard each and every week.”

Following this weekend’s bye, the Patriots return to action next weekend with a game against the Ravens, who blew out the Pats in the playoffs last season. Asked if Bill Belichick would show video of that game to the team next week, Mayo said he expects it. “You know that’s coming,” Mayo said with a laugh. “That’s going to be on the big screen.”

Read More: Brandon Tate, Jerod Mayo, Randy Moss,

Report: Pats looking into acquiring Vincent Jackson

10.07.10 at 9:13 pm ET
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The Patriots have reportedly looked into acquiring disgruntled Chargers wide receiver Vincent Jackson, according to CSNNE.com, with New England possibly offering offensive lineman Logan Mankins in return. The two players are in similar situations — both of whom are restricted free agents in the fifth season in the league who are sitting out rather than playing for their tender offers.

Read More: Logan Mankins, Vincent Jackson,
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