|10.06.10 at 1:48 am ET|
The Patriots and Vikings plan on completing a “blockbuster” deal on Wednesday that will send wide receiver Randy Moss to the Vikings, according to ESPN’s Adam Schefter.
Moss, 33, is a seven-time Pro Bowler who was drafted by the Vikings in 1998 and spent his first seven seasons in Minnesota before being traded to Oakland in 2005. Moss found new life in his career after being dealt to the Patriots in 2007 for a fourth-round draft pick — in New England, he set an NFL record with 23 touchdown receptions in his first season with the Patriots.
However, Moss, who is in the final year of a three-year deal with New England, has said on multiple occasions he does not feel wanted by the Patriots, and anticipates playing somewhere else in 2011.
|10.06.10 at 12:59 am ET|
Randy Moss back to Minnesota? The news from Foxsports.com that the Patriots and Vikings are reportedly talking about a deal that would ship the receiver to Minnesota is stunning on a number of levels, and raises several questions.
Here are three reasons a deal would make sense, and three reasons it doesn’t (plus an important afterword):
Feeling A Draft: Bill Belichick covets draft picks like few coaches. He views them as draft day currency which can be flipped to create any number of scenarios, and with the serious possibility Moss wouldn’t return for 2011, it would certainly be in the Patriots best interest to get something for him while they could. (It’s safe to presume the deal would involve draft picks, not players.) However, based on their team-building approach, it seems unlikely that even with Moss in the final year of his contract, the Patriots would settle for anything less than a second-rounder — especially when you consider that the Patriots would get a third-rounder as a comp pick if he did leave as a free agent — which would still be a steep price to pay for a 33-year-old wide receiver, even for a team that has a serious deficiency at wide receiver.
The Brett Favre Factor: In addition, there’s the deep relationship between Moss and the Minnesota quarterback to consider. The two have been close for several years — Favre lobbied hard for the Packers to swing a deal to acquire Moss in 2007, and had the following statement after the Patriots picked him up in a much-ballyhooed draft weekend deal in 2007: “The last thing I want to do is start any [controversy],” Favre told ESPN. “But I think he would have been a great addition. You throw Randy Moss, you throw Donald Driver and Greg Jennings on the field at the same time, and go three-wide receiver set … and I think it’s pretty intimidating. And we lost out on that, and I think that it’s a shame, because I know we could have had him.”
|10.05.10 at 9:04 pm ET|
According to Jay Glazer of FoxSports.com, the Patriots are in “serious” trade talks that would send Randy Moss to Minnesota. Glazer, appearing on Planet Mikey, said the two sides have been talking about a deal since the beginning of the season, and that the negotiations “heated up” Monday and Tuesday. A Patriots spokesman said after Glazer’s report first surfaced that “there is no trade.”
“These two teams have had talks about this for quite some time, however it really heated up yesterday and more so today,” Glazer said on Planet Mikey. (To listen to the complete interview click here.)
Michael Lombardi of the NFL Network, however, first reported that the Patriots have not given Moss permission to talk to other teams regarding a contract extension. Moss is in the final year of a three-year deal, and has expressed frustration over the lack of a new contract with the Patriots. Glazer first reported that the deal was contingent on Moss negotiating an extension with the Vikings, but backed off that premise when appearing on Planet Mikey for a second time Tuesday evening.
The wide receiver is coming off a game in which he had zero catches for the first time in his Patriots career, and has nine for the season.
Glazer said the following when first appearing on Planet Mikey Tuesday night: “What I reported on FOX is that the Vikings and the Patriots are deep in trade talks for Randy Moss, have been talking, this is not something that just popped up today. But today it really… it was about to get done and what they’re waiting on now is just a contract extension to get worked out with Randy Moss and the Vikings. If that gets done, it appears the trade will get done. But again, I’m reporting that the Vikings and Patriots deep in trade talks for a deal that would send Randy Moss to the Minnesota Vikings, again contingent upon a deal getting worked out for Randy Moss.”
|10.05.10 at 7:29 pm ET|
Patriots coach Bill Belichick joined The Big Show Tuesday afternoon to discuss the team’s big win over Miami, 41-14.
“It was very satisfying for me as a coach to see our team have that kind of success after they worked so hard at it in practice and talking about it at meetings and so forth,” Belichick said. “I was happy for them. They deserved it, because they went out and played a good football game — against a good football team.”
Belichick also expressed his pleasure in the special teams performance. He admitted that it was surprising that safety Patrick Chung was able to block two kicks but said the strong efforts of several players and the struggling Miami scheme made it a possibility.
“I think the preparation is good but you’re right as a former special teams coach you love to see those plays happen,” Belichick said.
Following are the highlights of Belichick’s conversation. To hear the full interview, go to The Big Show audio on demand page.
Any different role or assignment with Rob Ninkovich this week:
I think Rob just did a good job of reading the quarterback, getting a good break on the ball and showed good hands. Both of those catches were tough catches, away from his body and it was not like the ball was just right between the five and the zero. He had to make good adjustments on those plays and he did. I think the big thing was the he had a good read on the quarterback and saw him throw the ball and was able to jump the ball and get into the passing lane.
|10.05.10 at 3:30 pm ET|
A quarter of the NFL season is already in the books, and the Ravens are the latest team to reign supreme in WEEI’s NFL Power Rankings.
Arguments can be made for almost every 3-1 team in the top five to be in the No. 1 spot. The No. 2 J-E-T-S Jets Jets Jets have looked like one of the NFL’s elite teams after opening the season with a tough loss at home against the Ravens. The Steelers, who fall two spots and sit at No. 3, will enjoy the return of Ben Roethlisberger behind center. The Saints and Falcons round out the “fabulous five” after both teams grinded out wins late in the fourth quarter.
Week 5 could be titled “The return of the suspended.” Roethlisberger isn’t the only big name returning to a contending team. Defensive Rookie of the Year Brian Cushing returns to the No. 7 Texans and the Jets offense will add another weapon with receiver Santonio Holmes, as he will make his debut in green.
Finally, just one undefeated team remains in the NFL, but there are four winless teams. The 49ers, Lions, Panthers and Bills are all searching for their first win. You can find those teams at the bottom of the barrel.
1. (Last week, 9) 3-1 Joe Flacco showed true poise down the stretch in Pittsburgh and led his team to a comeback victory. The Ravens defense is playing very well, as usual, and this Ray Lewis-led club has beaten two of the best teams in the league on the road in the Steelers and Jets.
2. (6) 3-1 It’s nice to be a Jets fan right now. Mark Sanchez is proving he can be a solid quarterback, LaDainian Tomlinson showed he has a lot left in the tank and, oh, yeah, Darrelle Revis, Calvin Pace and Santonio Holmes will be returning soon. Rex Ryan‘s crew is 3-0 in the division and heading into Week 5 with loads of confidence.
3. (1) 3-1 Pittsburgh is in a great position to make a big push to take the AFC. After four weeks without their Pro Bowl quarterback, the Steelers were a hair away from finishing the first quarter of the season undefeated. Now, Roethlisberger returns to an offense that ranks 30th in the league in passing.
4. (3) 3-1 The defending champs make big plays in critical moments, and that’s why they were able to pull out another close win. The tackle for a 4-yard loss on DeAngelo Williams followed by a sack of Jimmy Clausen putting Carolina out of field goal range is a perfect example of what championship-caliber teams do when the game is on the line. The injury bug has bitten the Saints this season, but once players like Reggie Bush, Pierre Thomas and Roman Harper get healthy, I fully expect them to be defending their title come January.
5. (4) 3-1 The play of week came from Falcons wide receiver Roddy White when he made the Troy Brown-like strip of Nate Clements. Atlanta’s defense is putting good pressure on the quarterback and is forcing interceptions. The Falcons D leads the league with eight picks. If they can improve their play on special teams, the “Dirty Birds” can be a legitimate threat to the Saints for the NFC South title.
|10.05.10 at 2:38 pm ET|
Patriots safety Patrick Chung joined the Dale & Holley show Tuesday morning after his memorable performance in Monday night’s victory over the Dolphins. Chung discussed the mental transition from his first year to this season, the need to be relaxed, and how the team believes in itself after he blocked a field goal and punt and returned an interception for a touchdown.
Below are some highlights. For the full interview go to the Dale & Holley audio on demand page.
Was that the game of your life?
Yeah, game of my life. It feels good, you know, and God bless.
On the biggest transition from rookie year to second year:
The mental aspect. The game is 80 percent mental and 20 percent physical. You’ve got to know what you’re doing, you’ve got to know what everyone else is doing, when you know that you can play comfortable and play fast. It’s all a race about who can mature the fastest.
On what the Patriots saw on film for the Dolphins kicking game:
Really we just saw how they picked up guys, how they do different twists. Its always a game plan for a different team, and Scottie [O'Brien] drew it up just like it’s supposed to happen, and it happened just how he drew it up. The chance is right there, you’ve got to take advantage.
Was there any doubt in your mind that you would get a block?
We knew that we’d have the opportunity. I’m not going to say that we knew that it was going to get blocked. It all takes execution and it takes all 11 people doing exactly what they have to do for it to work. And it was a pretty good chance that it would work if we all did what we were supposed to do.
|10.05.10 at 1:27 pm ET|
Patriots defensive lineman Vince Wilfork stopped by for a visit with the Dale & Holley show Tuesday at Gillette Stadium. To hear the interview, visit the Dale & Holley audio on demand page.
Wilfork did not take questions from the media following Monday night’s win over the Dolphins, showing his disgust with the reporters’ apparent lack of faith in his team. He explained his feelings on Dale & Holley.
“From what we’ve done and where we’ve been; this is seven years for me here,” Wilfork said. “I don’t think I’ve ever seen everybody like that go against us. I’m not living in the past. That’s reality. That’s real. I’m the last one to pay attention to the media and what the media says and all that, but you know what? At some point, [the game predictions] will come by my desk, or it will come by with me, somebody will put it up around the facility.
“At first I saw it, but I really didn’t pay it no attention. I was like, ‘OK, some stats they’re putting up.’ When I actually walked by and saw it, and I saw everybody — like I said, our own people going against us, it was like ‘Hmm, that’s pretty interesting.’ So, you know what? I could sit here and be pissed off all day and all morning, but I’m not going to do that. it’s OK.”
Wilfork explained further his anger toward the media. “We knew what we have in this locker room,” he said. “And I say it all the time. Everybody’s outside looking in. We’re inside looking in. You know what? [We've got a] 53-man roster, practice squad [is] a couple — however many that is. We knew what this team is. We knew exactly what we have on this team. And we showed it.
“It’s kind of hard to come to work in your own back yard and have your beat writers for your own team that they see you every day, and every last one of them go against you. They have a job to do, I understand that. At the same token, you wonder why [players] act that way they act sometimes with them, because of stuff like that. So, you know what, last night. like I told them, ‘You guys have all the answers. We’re going to keep doing what we do.’
“This team that we have here, I’m very, very happy with this team. We responded this game. It meant a lot. Not just because a division win. It was set up for us to either fail of move forward. And I think everybody knew how to approach this game.”
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