Five Monday evening thoughts on the Patriots, the Bucs and Danny Amendola
|09.16.13 at 11:42 pm ET|
Emptying out the notebook at the end of a relatively eventful Monday for the Patriots:
1. Tampa Bay safety Dashon Goldson has been suspended for this week’s game against the Patriots for repeated personal fouls, with the latest coming after a hit on Darren Sproles in Sunday’s game against the Saints. (According to ESPN’s Adam Schefter, Goldson has been flagged for 15 personal fouls since 2010, the most in the league in that time.) Goldson has appealed the ban, so there’s the possibility he could still play, but as of right now, it figures Tampa Bay will start backup Ahmad Black at the free safety spot. It will be interesting to see if the Patriots try to attack Black if Goldson isn’t in the lineup. (For what it’s worth, Goldson had a free agent visit with the Patriots in 2011 after the lockout ended and was reportedly offered a one-year deal, but he ended up returning to San Francisco. He signed a new contract with the Bucs this past offseason.)
2. Your semi-regular reminder that Tommy Kelly is awesome. The defensive tackle is fast becoming a media favorite for his no-nonsense style, and the former Raider didn’t disappoint when he talked with reporters on Monday. Asked about the two wins the Patriots were able to come away with to open the season, Kelly — who never finished about .500 in his nine seasons with the Raiders — was philosophical. “It’s always good. Even if they’re ugly 2-0 victories, a victory is a victory. I’d rather have ugly wins than pretty losses any day, you know, and I had a lot of pretty losses in my career, so I’ll take the ugly wins. All that counts, man,” he said. “It’s going to stack up. I know as the weeks go by, we going to get better as a team. Timing’s going to get better, offense is going to get better. Just handle your own job, and that’s how you going to win.”
3. Just because Darrelle Revis is in a different uniform doesn’t mean Bill Belichick is taking him lightly. On a conference call with the media on Monday morning, the Patriots coach was asked about the all-world cornerback and how he’s being used in his first year with the Bucs.
“He’s played on both sides,” Belichick said of Revis, who went from 55 snaps in Week 1 to 71 snaps in Week 2. “I’m sure they can do all of what you said: put him on one side, flip him ‘ which they have done ‘ or match up him, which sometimes when they flip him, I’m not sure if they’re matching up or whether they’re just flipping. We’ll have to take a little closer look at that. He’s, I’m sure, capable of all three and has played on both sides.”
Revis’ situation in Tampa certainly bears watching — according to some reports, he’s already upset with Greg Schiano and his strict coaching style. In addition, he’s also a little frustrated by the lack of man-to-man coverage on defense.
4. Matthew Slater is the latest injury the Patriots will be forced to deal with. The special teams captain is dealing with a hand or wrist injury, depending on who you believe, and his status for Sunday’s game is in question. The popular Slater apparently suffered the injury in Thursday’s win over the Jets — if he’s not able to go Sunday against the Bucs, it will be interesting to see who will be asked to take over his role as leader of the New England special teams unit.
5. Danny Amendola is the latest Patriots smokescreen. Yes, the wide receiver was on the field for the start of practice on Monday. However, as we’ve stated on several occasions, there are no coincidences around Gillette Stadium. There are roughly eight million places he could go to work out, but to have him on the field — even for a few moments — sends a message to Tampa Bay that there’s a chance he could be out there on Sunday. As a result, Schiano and Bucs defensive coordinator Bill Sheridan to have to spend at least a few moments game-planning for the possibility of Amendola on the field on Sunday.
We’ll know a little more about the health of the receiver when the first injury report of the week is issued on Wednesday afternoon, and while it’s likely he’ll be listed as “limited,” it remains highly unlikely he’ll be able to play. In the end, when it comes to Amendola and his medical situation, we defer to the great Will Carroll, one of the best when it comes to sports injuries. He clears up some of the questions people might have when it comes to whether he has a strained groin or sports hernia, and what might be the best course of action for all involved.
“The adductor muscles are what we normally think of as the ‘groin.’ They pull the legs in to the midline, from spread to closed. Where they attach at the pelvis is very near where the oblique muscles attach,” Carroll wrote in an email to WEEI.com. “A sports hernia is when the adductors win the tug-of-war with the obliques. If Amendola has a strained groin, it’s seldom the case that first, the sports hernia occurred. Because they’re close and pain is seldom localized, it’s tough to diagnose without an MRI, but I have to assume the Pats have that. The injury is on one side of the bone or the other and depending on which, the Pats medical staff will treat it as one or the other.”