|Bill Belichick: ‘I don’t have any idea’ how new NFL drug policy impacts Brian Tyms or Brandon Browner||09.16.14 at 3:32 pm ET|
The NFL is about to adopt a new and improved drug policy for its players but Bill Belichick has no idea if and how it impacts two of his currently suspended players.
How this will impact the players and how the NFLPA will guide their players through the new policy is still to be determine, as evidenced when union spokesman George Atallah told the Associated Press Monday that the “drug policies are currently getting finalized.”
League and NFL Players Association attorneys and officials are reviewing the documents and could approve them this week.
One key element is how the changes affect players currently under suspension, including Denver receiver Wes Welker (four games) and Browns receiver Josh Gordon (entire season). Their bans would be reduced, and the union would naturally like to see reductions before Week 3.
The Patriots have two players – defensive back Brandon Browner and wide receiver Brian Tyms – currently under suspension for violation under the old policy. Could Belichick and the Patriots get them back in time for the home opener this weekend against the Raiders? The Patriots coach says he has no idea and is not about to begin guessing.
“Certainly not anything I could share with you because I don’t have any idea,” Belichick said in a conference call Tuesday. “I have no knowledge of it at all ‘ zero. You’d have to talk to the league and other people that are involved with that. The drug policy in the NFL is an extremely confidential and sensitive area. I would say that in most cases, [the media] probably knows more about it than I do and certainly more in advance because of the great sources that [the media has].”
Belichick said he has not been in touch with the NFL to ask for any guidance or hints as to whether the players might be eligible to return.
“We don’t have any knowledge, input or really involvement whatsoever in the league’s drug policy. Any information that we get comes from wherever it comes from ‘ I don’t even know where it comes from. I’m not even sure exactly how the process works from the other end. I just know that when we receive information, then we act on it as we receive it. It’s not anything that I’m involved in whatsoever other than being the recipient of the information of suspension or if it’s revoked or amended or adjusted or you know, whatever. I’m just the recipient of that information.
“I’m not in any way, shape or form whatsoever involved in any part of the process. So, whatever happens, when it’s announced, when we know about it, then we’ll deal with it. Until then, it’s 100 percent out of our hands. That’s something that you should address with league people and not with an individual club, certainly not our individual club because we have no part in it whatsoever.”
Tyms tweeted his reaction to the pending new drug policy Tuesday morning, an ambiguous message that had three crying emoticons.
New policy Ã°Ã°Ã°
‘ Brian Tyms (@Tyms2Times) September 16, 2014
|Bill Belichick on making history with 200th win: ‘I’ve coached a lot of good football players’||09.14.14 at 7:07 pm ET|
Bill Belichick’s first coaching win came on Sept. 8, 1991 in Foxboro against the Patriots in a 20-0 shutout in his second game with the Cleveland Browns.
Twenty-three years and six days later, Belichick became just the sixth coach in NFL history to coach his 200th win in the regular season.
Sunday’s win was much like many of his previous 199 over the years. His team gave up an early touchdown, rallied to take control through winning the turnover and special teams battles before cruising to a victory that featured sound fundamentals all around.
When the clock hit 0:00 on Sunday in Minnesota and Belichick walked across the field to congratulate his counterpart Mike Zimmer after a 30-7 Patriots’ win, Belichick improved his all-time regular season record to 200-106. Belichick joins Don Shula (328), George Halas (318), Tom Landry (250), Curly Lambeau (226) and Marty Schottenheimer (200) as coaches to reach the 200-win milestone.
What does it mean to the man wearing his traditional hoodie Sunday?
“It means a lot,” Belichick said. “What it really means is that I’ve coached a lot of good football players. Those are the guys that win the game. Players win games in this league. I’ve been fortunate to coach a lot of great players. That’s really about them winning the games. But it’s certainly it’s an honor to have my name thrown in there with some of those guys, I’d say really all of whom, maybe other than Curly, that I looked up to as a kid and admired and maybe borderline worshipped as an NFL coach.
“I certainly never got into coaching expecting that to ever happen so it’s very gratifying to reach that milestone but what it really says is that I’ve had a lot of good players, that’s really what it says.”
Belichick can pass Schottenheimer with a win over the lowly Raiders next week in New England’s home opener at Gillette. But for now, Belichick just wants to savor one more win in the record books.
“Felt good. Every win feels good. It felt good, felt real good. Just proud of the way our team played today. We had a lot of good players. Our team played hard today.”
|Bill Belichick on Ray Rice, Adrian Peterson and the NFL crisis: ‘The whole situation is really unfortunate’||09.14.14 at 6:39 pm ET|
Bill Belichick knows both Adrian Peterson and Ray Rice personally. The Patriots coach also loves the NFL and knows how bad of a week it’s been for the league, those two star players and the people affected by their actions.
After his team dispatched the Vikings, 30-7, Sunday in Minnesota, Belichick was asked if there were anything he or the Patriots could do to help the league through its worst week in recent memory.
Often times, Belichick will dismiss the question out of hand. But on Sunday he offered some perspective that showed sensitivity to legal matters at hand with both star players.
“It’s certainly unfortunate,” Belichick said. “I’ve had a lot of personal respect for Adrian and Ray, and the whole situation is really unfortunate for the events of what happened, but we all know that it so it’s an unfortunate situation.
“Well, I think we need to do what we always do, and that’s take care of our job and do our job and try to do it well. And that’s what we’ll focus on and continue to focus on. We really can’t control anything outside of what we do and we just have to do the best we can and leave all those other things to the process and so forth.”
The process with regard to Peterson, who sat out Sunday’s game after being deactivated on Friday by the Vikings, is waiting to see what further action the team and league will take after he turned himself in early Saturday morning and posted $15,000 bond after a charge of child injury was handed down by a Montgomery County, Texas grand jury.
As for Rice, the Ravens back has been suspended indefinitely after the NFL said it wasn’t aware of a video released last week that showed him punching his then-fiancee Janay Palmer and knocking her out in a casino elevator in New Jersey.
|Bill Belichick says Patriots captains provided ‘great leadership’ in win||09.14.14 at 6:22 pm ET|
When Bill Belichick brought the troops together after the season-opening loss in Miami, he looked directly to the veterans and leaders in his locker room to send a message. Losing two straight to open a season doesn’t happen in New England.
Apparently the captains did their job and got the message across. Certainly, the Patriots coach felt that way after Sunday’s 30-7 rout of the Vikings on the road.
“[That] felt good,” Belichick said. “Every win feels good. It felt good, felt real good. Just proud of the way our team played today. We had a lot of good players. I thought our captains did a real good job this week coming off last week’s disappointing game in Miami. We got great leadership from our veterans and our captains. Our team played hard today.”
Certainly, it didn’t start out well. The Vikings went 80 yards on the game’s opening drive, marching down the field for a touchdown as the Patriots linebackers were caught out of position. But those would be the only points of the game as he, defensive coordinator Matt Patricia and Patriots veterans made adjustments. Those adjustments produced four interceptions of Matt Cassel and six quarterback sacks, two apiece by Chandler Jones and Dont’a Hightower.
“Chandler has played well for us and is a good player,” Belichick said. “Again, anytime you can get that kind of a lead like we did and you saw the reverse of that last week, it becomes a one-dimensional game and those guys can just do their thing, tee off on the quarterback and all that. That’s a defensive lineman’s dream. We were able to capitalize on it and get some pressure on the quarterback. Our ability to make plays, to get ahead to create that situation really had a lot to do with it, too. But he did a good job, got good pass rush from all those guys, Rob, Chandler, Hightower, Easley, Vince, a bunch of guys got to the quarterback.
“The turnovers were huge. Most of those plays were on balls down the field. They got us early in the game on some misdirection plays, a crossing route to Rudolph, a crossing route back to the tight end off the play-action and a cross-boot for a touchdown. We need to do a better job on staying at home, defending our areas, not over-pursuing. We kind of got caught on that in the first drive. They had a good group of plays and were definitely able to execute them well. That was a good drive.”
Offensively, the Patriots ran the ball effectively, taking the pressure of Tom Brady, who was happy with the win but not the execution.
|Tom Brady looks depressed after win: ‘I just wish we’d go out there and play like we’re capable’||09.14.14 at 5:09 pm ET|
From the moment Tom Brady took the podium after his first win of the 2014 season, it was apparent he wasn’t in a particularly good mood.
Brady completed 15-of-22 passes for 149 yards and nine-yard TD pass to Julian Edelman in a 30-7 win over the Vikings in Minnesota. His quarterback rating was 102.3, the first time over 100 since last December against the Texans. He didn’t throw an interception and was sacked just once.
Still, Brady seemed upset with the lack of rhythm in the offense, partly reflected in a conversion rate of just 5-for-14 on third down.
“I’m happy we won,” Brady said. “I just wish we’d go out there and play like we’re capable. That’s just the way it is. I’m glad we won, great team win, a lot of guys contributed, a lot of great plays were made. Hopefully, offensively, we can do a better job next week.
“I think we have a lot of work to do. It’s good to win. We’ll get back to work [Monday].”
Brady gave props to the offensive line that did a much better job in pass protection and opened holes for Stevan Ridley to rush for 101 yards and a touchdown on 25 carries.
“Some great running, great blocking up front,” Brady said. “He always runs really hard. We were really close on some runs to breaking some longer ones but that was really important for us to run the ball like that. We’re going to need that all season.
|Alfonzo Dennard, Kenbrell Thompkins inactive for Patriots vs. Vikings||09.14.14 at 12:03 pm ET|
A logjam at wide receiver combined with the healthy return of Aaron Dobson has landed Kenbrell Thompkins on the inactive list for the Patriots’ Week 2 contest against the Vikings.
Also inactive for the Patriots Sunday are cornerback Alfonzo Dennard, Michael Buchanan, Jamie Collins, Zach Moore, Ryan Wendell and running back James White.
Buchanan (ankle), Collins (thigh) and Wendell (knee) were all ruled out Saturday night for various injuries.
Trainers were spotted looking at Dennard’s shoulder pregame Sunday in Minnesota, and that combined with the fact that he was having trouble finishing tackles in the second half against Miami is an indication of a possible injury issue, though Dennard was not listed on the Patriots’ injury report this week.
Dennard recorded his first interception of the season last week in the first half of the season opener against the Dolphins.
Sunday’s inactives mean defensive lineman Chris Jones, wide receiver Aaron Dobson and offensive lineman Bryan Stork are in line to make their season debuts.
As for the Vikings, running back Adrian Peterson is inactive after turning himself in after his arrest on child injury chargers on Friday. Quarterback Christian Ponder is also inactive, meaning rookie Teddy Bridgewater is the backup behind Matt Cassel. Also inactive are linebackers Michael Mauti and Brandon Watts, center David Yankey, wide receiver Rodney Smith and defensive end Scott Crichton.
|Adrian Peterson turns himself in, posts $15,000 bond after arrest on child injury charge||09.13.14 at 7:48 am ET|
Adrian Peterson turned himself in to Montgomery County, Texas, authorities early Saturday morning and was released after posting a bond of $15,000. He was officially booked into the Montgomery County jail just after 1 a.m. CT and released 30 minutes later after posting the bond.
On Friday, Peterson was indicted by a grand jury on charges of reckless or negligent injury to a child and a warrant had been issued for his arrest. The team has deactivated him for Sunday’s home game against the Patriots.
Peterson’s attorney, Rusty Hardin issued a statement saying his client’s conduct “involves using a switch to spank his son.” Peterson reportedly removed the leaves of a tree branch, which he referred to in a police report as “a switch,” to strike the 4-year-old boy.
“This indictment follows Adrian’s full cooperation with authorities who have been looking into this matter,” Hardin said in the statement. “Adrian is a loving father who used his judgment as a parent to discipline his son. He used the same kind of discipline with his child that he experienced as a child growing up in east Texas. Adrian has never hidden from what happened.”
Hardin also said that Peterson used the same discipline with his child that he experienced growing up in Texas and said the star running back has cooperated fully with authorities and voluntarily testified before the grand jury for several hours.
“Adrian will address the charges with the same respect and responsiveness he has brought to this inquiry from its beginning,” Hardin said. “It is important to remember that Adrian never intended to harm his son and deeply regrets the unintentional injury.”
Last October, his 2-year-old son died in Sioux Falls, South Dakota, after being allegedly assaulted by a man who was dating the boy’s mother. Two months prior, he found out he was the boy’s father. The man who assaulted the boy, Joseph Robert Patterson, was charged with murder and manslaughter.
A Houston station, citing law enforcement sources, said Peterson told police that the incident — he referred to it as a “whooping” — occurred in Spring, Texas, in May as punishment for his son pushing another one of Peterson’s children. The boy suffered cuts and bruises to areas including his back, buttocks, ankles and legs.
“It’s just made me stop taking things for granted,” Peterson told ESPN.com Vikings reporter Ben Goessling in August. “Life is short. You never know. You just want to take advantage of the time you do have.”
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