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Chris Mortensen on MFB: Despite skeptics, Patriots ‘truly believe [Deflategate] is baloney’ 01.27.15 at 8:48 pm ET
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Chris Mortensen

Chris Mortensen

ESPN Senior NFL reporter Chris Mortensen joined Middays with MFB Tuesday to discuss the NFL’s investigation into the Patriots’ potential deflating of footballs in the AFC Championship against the Colts.

To listen to the interview on the Middays with MFB Audio on Demand page, click here.

While many came away impressed with Bill Belichick‘s animated press conference Saturday, Mortensen was skeptical of the information shared by the New England coach, saying that Belichick’€™s press conference “doesn’€™t explain how the Colts’€™ balls remained within regulation.”

“One team’€™s footballs, basically all of them were under-inflated. The other team’€™s footballs, when re-tested — and they like them on the lower end too, by the way, the Colts, were all within regulation,” Mortensen said. ‘€œAll the scientific minutiae that’€™s been thrown at us, be careful about buying into it.”

Added Mortensen: “I found it to be fascinating TV, but it didn’€™t persuade me.”

Mortensen also noted that he was surprised to see Patriots owner Robert Kraft handle Monday’€™s press conference the way he did. In addition to maintaining the Patriots’€™ innocence, Kraft said the league should apologize to his coach and quarterback if they find the Patriots committed no infractions.

“Either way, Bob Kraft, what he did [Monday], as I’€™ve been told by other people in the league, was astounding, because we all know that he’€™s now throne down the gauntlet to commissioner Goodell, who obviously Bob Kraft‘€™s been his biggest ally,” Mortensen said.

Mortensen said that the comments from the Patriots shows that despite the ongoing investigation, the Pats “truly believe this is baloney.”

Despite the distraction of Deflategate, Mortensen said he believes the Pats will defeat the Seahawks in Super Bowl XLIX on Sunday.

“I think they’€™re going to win the Super Bowl,” Mortensen said. “I think they’€™re going to win it because they’€™re the better team.”

For complete Super Bowl XLIX coverage, visit weei.com/patriots.

Read More: 2015 NFL playoffs,
Photos: Super Bowl week in Arizona 01.27.15 at 4:58 pm ET
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WEEI’s Dennis & Callahan, Middays with MFB and Dale & Holley are in Arizona all week, along with a team of WEEI.com writers.

Click here to check out their photos all week.

Middays with MFB on Radio Row

Middays with MFB on Radio Row

 

What’s on tap Tuesday for Patriots, Seahawks in Phoenix? 01.27.15 at 5:00 am ET
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PHOENIX — One of the most anticipated days of the week leading up to the Super Bowl is here — media day. Each team will have an hour of time for availability, which is being held at the US Airways Center in downtown Phoenix. It is the only access the media will have with each team during the day.

10:30-11:30 MT Patriots media day
12:15-1:15 MT Seahawks media day

Here are a few of the bigger WEEI stories and radio segments from Monday in Arizona:

One Scout’s Take: Expect bruising Super Bowl between Patriots, Seahawks. By Chris Price
No Turning Back: Robert Kraft offers dramatic defense of Bill Belichick, Tom Brady. By Chris Price
Seahawks expect Kam Chancellor to lower the boom on Rob Gronkowski. By John Tomase
Robert Kraft defends Patriots, says NFL should apologize if league finds them not guilty of any wrongdoing. By Chris Price & Ryan Hannable
Bill Belichick on Dale & Holey (audio): Green Bay/San Diego trip helped prepare Patriots for Super Bowl.
Tedy Bruschi on Dale & Holley (audio): Patriots won because they outplay and out coach.

Read More: 2015 NFL playoffs, Super Bowl XLIX,
Bill Belichick on Dale & Holley: Deflategate ‘really hasn’t’ hindered preparation for Seahawks 01.26.15 at 4:34 pm ET
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Making his weekly appearance on Dale & Holley, Patriots coach Bill Belichick discussed the Deflategate saga and his desire for his team’€™s attention to be turned to Super Bowl XLIX against the Seahawks.

For audio of the interview, go to the Audio On Demand page.

When asked about the ball deflation scandal, Belichick responded, ‘€œI appreciate the question, but I covered it pretty thoroughly [Saturday], and I don’€™t have anything else to add at this time. My focus is on the Seahawks.’€

He did say that the NFL’€™s presence in the matter has not affected his preparation for the Seahawks.

“It really hasn’€™t,” he said. “I haven’€™t been involved with them, so it really hasn’€™t.”

As for Super Bowl preparations, Belichick said the Patriots have made strides as they ready themselves for the NFC champions.

“We’€™re about halfway through the process,” Belichick said. “I think to this point, we’€™ve covered a lot of things. There’€™s certainly a lot more to do and a lot of work left on the coaching end, on the playing end and just the overall logistics and the whole week. We’€™ll see how it all comes together. I think we’€™re in a good place right now, but we’€™ve got a long way to go.”

Belichick spoke of the threats provided by Seattle’€™s offense, specifically running back Marshawn Lynch and quarterback Russell Wilson.

Lynch ran for 157 yards in Seattle’€™s come-from-behind overtime victory over the Packers in the NFC Championship. The Pats are plenty familiar with Lynch, as he spent the first four years of his career in the AFC East as a member of the Buffalo Bills. Belichick agreed that Lynch is one of the harder backs to bring down in the NFL.

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Appearing on Dale & Holley, Tedy Bruschi fires back at critics of Bill Belichick, Tom Brady, Patriots 01.26.15 at 4:20 pm ET
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Speaking on his weekly appearance on the Dale & Holley Show, Tedy Bruschi offered an impassioned take on both nationwide analysis of Deflategate, and critics of Bill Belichick, Tom Brady and the Patriots.

When asked if Bruschi has ever known Belichick or Brady to be cheaters, responded succinctly, saying, “I’€™ll answer that question. No I don’€™t. I know I have not. I won’€™t expound on it but just give you the word ‘€˜no.’€™”

Here are Bruchi’s other comments:

Regarding some of the criticism coming from his fellow ESPN analysts

“I think it’€™s a very difficult position for me to be on set with certain people that said certain things that of course I was listening to and I heard. Every man is entitled to their opinion. I disagree with them as strongly as I possibly can because I’€™ve been in this organization for 13 years. Tom Brady, I know. Bill Belichick, I know. If vouch is the word, vouch is the word I’€™ll use. I vouch for these guys. I know their character. There isn’€™t anything more that they can do or they can say in terms of what they know what happened.”

On how Brady, Belichick and the Patriots have been viewed through recent controversy

“What is this year all been about? It’€™s been about that word transparency. NFL transparency. Ray Rice. Adrian Peterson. Everything. We want to know. We want to know what happened. We want to know the investigation, everything. After this happened there wasn’€™t one line from Bill or Tom that said, ‘€˜There’€™s an NFL investigation going on and we have to wait and out of the respect for the investigation we can’€™t comment.’€™ That’€™s an easy out. That’€™s an easy out they could have used. But they want to be as transparent as they possibly could to say, ‘€˜This is what we know. This is what we’€™ve done. I’€™m telling you this did not happen.’€™ And Bill is out there conducting his own investigation. Lord knows what he did to those balls, rubbing them, having the quarterback do whatever they did to them. They were as transparent as they possibly could be. What more do you want from them?

“There are just certain opinions about the New England Patriots out there because somebody’€™s team got beat. Marty Hurney, your team got beat. That’€™s all it us. Move on. But you want to talk about and you want to bring it up because you need some reason why as to why you were beat. But this is the reason why: you were outcoached and you were outplayed.

“I can’€™t change the way that they think or the way that they feel. SpyGate is over and done with. Bill even addressed it in his press conference on Saturday. I had to do a lot of things individually to protect our signals because I was the signal-caller. We take the bullet for that, so be it. We move on, we paid the price and continue to win games. We thought we put it all to bed by almost going 19-0 but we didn’€™t do it. So people want answers. That’€™s just the way it is. I try and stay as level-headed as I possibly can about it. It’€™s impossible to not get emotional at times. ‘€¦ When it comes down to it I just have to be as level-headed as I possibly can about it and feel very confident.

“We won, that’€™s the bottom line. And that team is still continuing to win and people want their own justification as to why. Why? You were outcoached, you were outplayed. End of story.”

Read the rest of this entry »

Read More: Bill Belichick, Patriots, Tedy Bruschi, Tom Brady
Report: NFL Deflategate investigation focusing on locker room attendant 01.26.15 at 3:44 pm ET
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The NFL’s investigation into deflated footballs in the AFC championship is focusing on a Patriots locker room attendant, according to Jay Glazer of FOX Sports.

Glazer reports that the attendant allegedly took the balls from the officials’ locker room to “another area” on the way to the field. Sources told Glazer that the league has interviewed the attendant and that they also have video of him, but that they are still trying to determine if he did anything wrong.

What’s on tap for Patriots, Seahawks on Monday in Phoenix 01.26.15 at 9:58 am ET
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PHOENIX — Following their Super Bowl send-off rally at City Hall Plaza at 11 a.m., the Patriots will depart for Arizona to join the Seahawks out West in preparation for Super Bowl XLIX. Here is the Monday schedule in Arizona:

2:45 MT: Seahawks coach Pete Carroll press conference
3:00 MT: Seahawks DE Cliff Avril media availability
3:00 MT: Seahawks WR Doug Baldwin media availability
3:00 MT: Seahawks S Cam Chancellor media availability
3:00 MT: Seahawks C Max Unger media availability
3:00 MT: Seahawks LB Bobby Wagner media availability
3:00 MT: Seahawks LB K.J. Wright media availability
4:30 MT (approx): Patriots arrive at Phoenix Sky Harbor International Airport
6:00 MT (approx): Patriots coach Bill Belichick press conference
6:15 MT (approx): Patriots QB Tom Brady media availability
6:15 MT (approx): Patriots S Devin McCourty media availability
6:15 MT (approx): Patriots WR Matthew Slater media availability
6:15 MT (approx): Patriots OL Dan Connolly media availability
6:15 MT (approx): Patriots DL Vince Wilfork media availability

WEEI.com and WEEI is live on site in Arizona all week leading up to and for the game. Here are a few stories to check out up on our site:

5 things to know about Seahawks, by Chris Price
Forget Legion of Boom — how will Seahawks score against Patriots? by John Tomase
BIll Belichick gets F in science, A+ in media relations, by Tim Benz

Read More: 2015 NFL playoffs, Seattle Seahawks, Super Bowl XLIX,
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