|Tom Brady to Randy Moss on early season media criticism: ‘Great opportunity for me to dig deep’||11.25.14 at 6:00 am ET|
What a difference two months makes.
Obviously a lot has changed since that Sept. 29 game, led by Brady’s play, as the Patriots have rallied with seven straight wins to now have the best record in the AFC at 9-2.
In an interview with old friend Randy Moss on the FOX pregame show prior to last Sunday’s game, Brady spoke of the criticism — acknowledging it may have been the first time he was criticized during his 15-year pro career.
“Really for my career I’ve never had a lot of criticism,” Brady told Moss. “We won the first year that I played and then we won two more shortly after that. This was really the first time people came down on me. I took it in stride and I thought it was really a great opportunity for me to dig deep. I think I’ve always had that chip on my shoulder and there probably always will be because I was a sixth-round draft pick — that never goes away. I was the one no one really wanted in college. They really didn’t want me in the pros. Now I am always like, ‘Why do they want me to go away so quick?, Why do they want me to go away so quick?’ I just have fun playing.”
Brady is now 37 years old and in his 15th season in the league. Moss, who is now retired, asked Brady how much longer he has left playing and why he has a desire to play for as long as he can.
“I think there is nothing I’d rather do,” said Brady. “I don’t have a lot of hobbies. There’s something in my DNA that loves this game because I feel like I am 27. I just want to keep doing it. I’m having a lot of fun. We get to play football for a living and what would be any better than that?”
|Tom Brady on D&C: ‘We’ve got a lot of good things going’||11.24.14 at 9:40 am ET|
Patriots quarterback Tom Brady checked in with Dennis & Callahan for his weekly chat Monday morning, following Sunday’s dominant 34-9 victory over the Lions, and talked about Darrelle Revis, Jonas Gray, Odell Beckham Jr. and Randy Moss. To hear the interview, go to the Dennis & Callahan audio on demand page.
With their seventh straight win, the Patriots are 9-2 and look like they have established some separation from the pack. Brady cautioned that there still is plenty of room for improvement.
“I think it’s a week-to-week thing,” he said. “At different times over the course of the year we’ve done a lot of things really well, and you really want them to all come together on game day. I’m sure there’s always things we can get better at. I thought we did a lot of good things offensively yesterday, but I think we could have been even better. You’ve just got to go out there every week trying to improve and stay sharp and improve things that have shown up over the course of the season and we haven’t done as well consistently.
“It’s great to win, but as always when you win it’s never as good as you think, and when you lose it’s never as bad as you think. We’ll go in today and watch the film and talk about all the things we can do better. We obviously are playing well, we’ve got a lot of good things going. We’re continuing to be tested, because we’ve played a lot of good opponents here the past bunch of weeks, and now we’ve got another one coming up on Sunday.”
Running back Jonas Gray, the star of last week’s win over the Colts, sat out Sunday after arriving late to practice Friday.
“Those are always coach’s decisions to do certain things,” Brady said. “It’s unfortunate for everybody involved. You never want to see those things, because all these guys are important to us, and Jonas is a big part of our team and a big part of the reason why we won a huge game in our season. You just hate to see someone disciplined, but that’s just the way coach decided to handle it.”
|Randy Moss: ‘There is a special place in my heart for the New England Patriots’||11.20.14 at 8:46 pm ET|
The former Patriots wide receiver is in town to do some TV work for Fox in advance of Sunday’s Patriots-Lions game. Between his work, Moss sat down with Patriots.com reporter Jackie Brittain for an interview for Patriots.com.
Moss talked about a variety of topics, including how he became a member of the Patriots. Moss was traded to the Patriots from the Raiders before Day 2 of the 2007 NFL draft for a fourth-round pick in that draft.
“I’ve said this story time and time again, but I just want people to understand that I am very grateful,” Moss told Brittain. “When I came from Oakland, I was in a dark place. I was in a dark place because I was there for two years, I got traded from the Vikings and things weren’t going well in California. I was away from home, my career wasn’t going the way I wanted it to go.
“I remember I was in Houston, Texas, doing the draft and I got a call from Bill Belichick and I thought it was one of my friends playing. I was like, ‘Who is this?’ and he was like, ‘This is Bill Belichick.’ I was like, ‘Man, get real, who is this?’ Coach told me that if I am up here by 10 o’clock next morning, blah, blah, blah, then the trade would go through. Man, I started scrambling.
“When I came up here and became a Patriot I was very thankful, I was very grateful. Mrs. Myra Kraft played a role in it. When she passed away I had to pay my respects to the home, to the family, and when I go see Mr. Kraft he doesn’t call me Randy Moss, he calls me Randy Moss Kraft. They welcomed me into the family and like I said, still to this day it’s just love and anytime you come here you feel the love from the Kraft family.”
|Rodney Harrison on D&C: Despite top offense, Colts have ‘too many inconsistencies’||11.14.14 at 9:20 am ET|
NBC Sports NFL analyst Rodney Harrison made his weekly appearance on the Dennis & Callahan show on Friday morning to preview the Patriots-Colts game and discuss other NFL news. To hear the interview, go to the Dennis & Callahan audio on demand page.
The Patriots are on a roll, winners of four straight, heading into the Sunday night showdown in Indianapolis. The AFC South-leading Colts come in at 6-3, one game behind the AFC-leading Patriots and Broncos.
Harrison said the Colts have yet to prove they belong with the AFC’s elite.
“I think you have the top couple of teams in the AFC, which would be, I would say, New England and Denver,” Harrison said. “And the Indianapolis Colts, right, they’re trying to take that next step. Just too many inconsistencies on the defensive side of the ball. Yes, they have the No. 1-ranked offense, but if you want to win games and playoff games and beat the upper echelon of teams, you have to be able to play defense. And it’s not just at home and playing with a different speed at home, but the consistency when you’re on the road.”
Andrew Luck has been heralded as the next elite QB, and Harrison said his personality has a lot to do with it.
“The kid is so humble, he’s so smart, he works his butt off, he’s got a great arm, he’s smart. He’s got basically all the tangibles and intangibles that you look for in a quarterback, and as you can see he’s really taken that next step to being an elite quarterback,” Harrison said. “And I don’t think anything’s going to change with him. The type of kid that he is now, he was in high school or when he was in college, and now he’s in the pros.”
Another quarterback who might soon join Luck in the NFL is 2013 Heisman Trophy winner Jameis Winston, who can’t seem to stay out of trouble. Harrison said the Florida State star is not worth the risk.
“I wouldn’t touch him. Just too many issues,” Harrison said. “This kid, it’s amazing how he has a thousand lives. They continually give him opportunity after opportunity, and I just think it’s one of those things where he’s got to really fall on his butt to really appreciate the opportunity that he’s been given. There’s no way I’m touching him. I don’t care about the talent, because when you get to a point where you’ve become this distraction to the team; the coaches, the organization can’t trust you, and you don’t know which guy’s going to show up on Sunday, yes he can do that on the college level, but on the professional level its completely different.”
Randy Moss is back in the news with the debut of an ESPN documentary about him. Harrison said the one-time Patriot never got his due in part because of his off-field issues.
“Randy Moss was spectacular,” Harrison said. “And I’m going to tell you this: As great as Randy Moss is, we still don’t appreciate how great he is because of some of the early distractions, some of the things that he’s gone through. Randy was one of the smartest football players I’ve ever been around — very smart, articulate guy, like you see now on TV. And I just believe that if he would have had maybe a cleaner image that people would have really been able to understand how great Randy Moss is. And Randy’s a good person — just a little bit misunderstood.”
|Rodney Harrison on MFB: Tom Brady ‘doesn’t trust that offensive line’||09.23.14 at 12:41 pm ET|
NBC Sports analyst Rodney Harrison made his weekly appearance on Middays with MFB on Tuesday to talk about the Patriots’ rocky start to the season. To hear the interview, go to the MFB audio on demand page.
The Patriots improved to 2-1 with Sunday’s 16-9 victory over the Raiders, but the offense continues to struggle, as evidenced by the single touchdown against a low-ranked Raiders defense. The finger has been pointed at the offensive line as the main culprit.
“It’s a big concern, because I’m sitting there with coach [Tony] Dungy and we’re watching them, and they’re just getting their butt kicked,” Harrison said. “The tackles, the guards, they’re just getting their butts kicked and getting pushed around. They just look so big and stiff, no knee bends, anything. It just looked bad. And Tom [Brady], you could just tell, Tom never felt comfortable, he doesn’t feel comfortable, he doesn’t trust that offensive line.
“They really need to either get that run game going, they need to do something. If it was one guy, like coach Dungy pointed out, then you can shift and you can use the running back and you can run some screens, stuff like that. But unfortunately it’s not just one guy, it’s a multitude of guys. This is a big concern for me, because if Tom gets hurt they’re in trouble.”
Richie Incognito, let go by the Dolphins in the offseason after being suspended for his role in the Jonathan Martin bullying scandal, remains a free agent. The talented but troubled offensive lineman reportedly is talking with the Eagles this week.
“He can play, man. He can play,” Harrison said. “[Bill] Belichick, he’s one of those guys that can bring certain people in — Corey Dillon and Randy Moss and myself — and people said, ‘Hey, these guys are troublemakers and they’re not good people.’ You can bring him in — he’s the one guy I think in the league that can get a guy to come in and fit in.
“A lot of people deserve second chances. Richie, he seems like he paid his dues. We all make mistakes in life. I think he can still play. I think you get a guy like that, you can get him for cheap, he’s hungry. Why not bring him in? If he doesn’t work out, cut him. It’s not like his salary will be guaranteed anyway.”
|Randy Moss takes high school coaching position in North Carolina||06.27.14 at 4:15 pm ET|
Randy Moss is the latest ex-Patriot to try his hand at coaching — the former New England wide receiver is reportedly an associate head coach at Victory Christian Center School in Charlotte, N.C.
Moss, who spent three-plus seasons (2007-2010) with the Patriots, was apparently on the sidelines at Panthers quarterback Cam Newton‘s 7-on-7 tournament Thursday coaching the Kings from the sideline. His son, Thaddeus, is a 6-foot-4, 240-pound prospect who played last year at Rhode Island’s Lincoln High, but joined Victory Christian after the family recently moved from the New England area, Victory Christian head coach Dee Brown told the Observer.
In his 14-year career with the Vikings, Raiders, Patriots, Titans and Niners, Moss finished with 982 receptions for 15,292 yards and 156 touchdowns.
|Wes Welker admits to Randy Moss: ‘I don’t care what it takes, you’re going to be out there in this game’||01.28.14 at 4:57 pm ET|
NEWARK — Who said former athletes and teammates can’t ask hard-hitting questions?
Former superstar receiver Randy Moss, who works now for Fox Sports 1, chatted up former teammate Wes Welker at Tuesday’s Super Bowl media day here and asked him if he would play in the Super Bowl with a concussion.
“What do you think? I mean, you want to be out there,” Welker told Moss, both of whom played in the Super Bowl XLII loss to the Giants. “The Super Bowl, this is what you dream about. You’re going to be there, I don’t care what it takes, you’re going to be out there in this game.”
Welker has dealt with many concussions over the course of his career, including one this season with the Broncos that forced him to miss the last two games of the regular season. When he returned in the playoffs against the Chargers, he wore an oversized helmet with extra padding, a helmet that prompted many comparisons to a cartoon character.
But concussions are certainly no joke and Welker has served as the poster boy for those critical of the NFL’s attitude toward dealing with concussions.
Moss, who retired this season after playing in last year’s Super Bowl, also asked Welker what he thought of playing against Seattle’s “Legion of Boom” secondary, starring of course Richard Sherman.
“I expect to be effective just by doing what I do and going out there and playing hard. Playing tough and making plays over the middle, trying to move the sticks and put us in position to score some points,” Welker told Moss.