Seymour: Patriots approach has ‘changed’
|01.18.10 at 12:15 pm ET|
Former Patriots defensive lineman Richard Seymour believes New England has gotten away from what made it great.
“If I was a GM, I would take a less-talented guy, but a guy that really cared about football. You know, he maybe didn’t have to come from a football bloodline, but a guy that is in the weight room, is in the study room, is doing everything it takes to be a champion. And that’s the guy you want in the foxhole with you,” Seymour told WEEI Monday morning (to hear the entire interview, click here).
“And that’s what the Patriots — when I was there — that’s what we were built on. We were built on those championship teams, being tough, being hard-nosed. I just think over the course of time, our team and the mentality kind of changed a bit, where we went to.
“There’s nothing wrong with scoring a lot of points. But we [didn’t win] a Super Bowl putting up a whole lot of points up on the scoreboard. Even when the Giants won the Super Bowl — and I hate to talk about that game — the Giants defense is what won that game for them.”
Seymour, who was drafted by the Patriots in 2001 and spent eight seasons in New England, was traded to Oakland before the start of the 2009 season for a first-round pick in 2011. He is currently a free agent, and said Monday he enjoyed his year with the Raiders, saying, “This year, football was fun again for me. It really was.”
However, the five-time Pro Bowler — who could go for a sixth time this year — said he might be open to a return to Oakland, but he would not entertain a return to the Patriots.
“No, I think definitely that chapter has closed,” Seymour said. “I had a great time there and I learned a lot. Made a lot of great friends. Won championships and played at the highest level. But that chapter has closed for me. I have new challenges in my life at this point, and I’m looking forward to taking care of that.
“It isn’t really a knock on the Patriots, it’s just … obviously, the way things ended, I’m really not trying to go back there, to be honest with you,” he added. “Oakland is a place where, financially if things work out, we could come to some type of agreement where I can continue my career there, then that would definitely be something that … because you always want to go somewhere that you’re wanted. I think that’s what all players want. You want to go somewhere where a team really values you.”
For Seymour, it was difficult watching New England’s playoff loss to the Ravens, especially seeing many of his former teammates get pushed around by the Baltimore offensive line.
“As a defender, you never want anybody — they can do anything to you, but don’t come in and run the football against us. That’s really demoralizing as a defense,” he said. “That’s some we always took a lot of pride in — stopping the run and being physical and playing that type of game.
“For the Patriots to kind of get pushed around that way and having to move guys around in different positions and taking Vince out of the middle and putting him at end … it was kind of tough to watch in that regard, because like I said, I played with a lot of those guys. I have a lot of ties with them. But you have to give the Ravens a lot of credit.”
Seymour also believes the Ravens would not have been able to run for as many yards as they did — 234, more than the Patriots allowed in a single game all season.
“You like to feel that any player in this league, if you’re competitive, you like to feel like you could have made a difference,” Seymour said. “Now I’m not saying I would have made the difference in that football game because it definitely got out of hand and got ugly, but I think if I was on one end and Vince was in his normal spot and you had Ty [Warren], I think … I don’t know if they would have ran for that many yards, but … it is what it is.”
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