|Tom Brady confirms Rob Gronkowski has worked with Alex Guerrero, but could he do it more?||12.05.16 at 10:57 am ET|
Part of what has enabled Tom Brady to play in the league for so long and withstand some of the hits he’s taken, has been his work with personal coach Alex Guerrero.
The work is not centered around strength work and weight lifting, rather resistance work to help with flexibility.
Rob Gronkowski had his ninth surgery since college late last week and with his body being more muscle and most of his training being done with weights since being a child, many have wondered if he could benefit from working with someone like Guerrero and focusing more on flexibility?
On Kirk & Callahan Monday morning, Brady said Gronkowski has worked with Guerrero some in the past, but it’s up to the individual as to how invested they want to be with it.
“I mean Gronk is so hard working and Gronk has spent a lot of time with Alex at different points,” Brady said. “Gronk has his rehab and he’s going to do it and I have no doubt he’s going to come back stronger and better than ever. All of us learn every year about things that work and don’t work. It’s really up to the individual. Gronk, it depends what all the — I don’t want to single out Gronk because he’s the only one that is injured — but a lot of players that get injured over the course of the year and then you go about changes in your routine because you think this may work and this may not work.
“To me, I feel like it’s very touch and feel with how you do take care of your body. Some weeks it is a little more strengthening. Some weeks it’s a little more conditioning. Some weeks it’s a little more pliability depending on how your body feels. I don’t think people spend enough time on pliability at all. I think that is the missing third leg to what athletes in high school should be learning and college athletes. We learn at a young age it’s all about strength and conditioning and strengthening at the expense of pliability, to me gets you injured. If you’re injured you can’t play. If your body is your asset and you’re injured, you’re not going to have much of a career for any athlete. Every team is trying to incorporate the things they see and they feel and they want to do a better job of. I feel like that is part of what I want to teach people is how I have done it.”
The only games Brady has missed in his 17-year career were in 2008 when he tore his ACL. The quarterback noted how much goes into preparing his body during the week for the games on Sunday to withstand the hits that he takes, which is a major reason why he’s been able to be so dependable.
But in Gronkowski’s case, some injuries are just unavoidable.
|Snap Judgments: Tom Brady earns record-setting win No. 201, Patriots take care of business, beat Rams||12.04.16 at 4:00 pm ET|
FOXBORO — The Patriots can be grateful they were playing the Rams in the first game without Rob Gronkowski.
Tom Brady completed 33 of 46 passes for 269 yards, connected on a touchdown pass to Chris Hogan and recorded his 201st career win as a starting quarterback in a 26-10 win over the Los Angeles Rams at Gillette Stadium. Stephen Gostkowski added four field goals and LeGarrette Blount ran for a 43-yard touchdown. Brady snapped a tie with Peyton Manning to establish a new standard for NFL quarterbacks.
But on a day when they were clearly the better team, their offense never looked like it was fully in sync against a Rams unit that gave up 555 yards and 49 points a week earlier in New Orleans.
It wasn’t the most glamorous or spectacular day by any means for Brady, who was going up against a defensive line that is regarded as one of the most physical in football. With Gronkowski going on IR Saturday, Julian Edelman caught eight passes on 12 targets for 101 yards.
But offensively, the woeful Rams played like a team making a cross-country trip, with little energy and no chance of putting up any kind of fight. The Patriots sacked rookie Jared Goff four times and held the Rams to 1-for-12 on third down.
The win puts the Patriots (10-2) three games up in the AFC East with four weeks left, as the Dolphins (7-5) lost in Baltimore Sunday.
The game started as expected, with the Patriots taking the opening drive of the game and marching 80 yards in eight plays.
On 4th-and-1 at the Rams 43, Bill Belichick decided to go for it and was rewarded when LeGarrette Blount ran up to the right side of the line and then bounced outside. He had mostly green turf in front of him. He turned around a defensive back on his way to his 13th rushing touchdown of the season.
The Patriots made it 14-0 when Brady hit Hogan with a perfect back shoulder pass in the left corner of the north end zone from 14 yards out. The drive was set up when Malcolm Butler picked off a Jared Goff pass at the Rams 37 and returned it to the 30. It was New England’s first interception since Butler intercepted Landry Jones on the first drive of the game in Pittsburgh on Oct. 23.
Not everything was smooth, however, as the Patriots were building up their first-half lead. Namely, rookie Cyrus Jones continues to look extremely shaky handling all kicks.
The Rams won the toss and deferred. On the opening kick, Jones bobbled the ball four yards deep before taking it out to the 20, five yards shy of a touchback spot. Then on the Rams’ second punt of the day from Johnny Hekker, Jones muffed the punt and was saved by Patrick Chung, who raced in and recovered at New England’s 19.
Danny Amendola filled in for Jones on punt returns before getting slammed to the turf on a punt late in the third quarter. He got up hobbling, not able to put much weight on his right leg. He was seen by the medical staff and Bill Belichick on the sideline before hopping to his feet and making his way down the steps to the tunnel. The team later announced he was out with an ankle injury. Eric Rowe was also dinged up in the game with a hamstring injury.
[For a full box score and stats, click here.]
|Dion Lewis has a secret to his success (and survival): Make them miss me||12.03.16 at 6:10 pm ET|
FOXBORO — Dion Lewis is ready to show everybody he’s back for real.
In two games back, the running back who led the 2015 Patriots in yards from scrimmage before his ACL tear on Nov. 8, 2015, has eased his way back into the rhythm of the Patriots offense. Now with Rob Gronkowski out for the season following back surgery, it’s Lewis who might be called upon to finally get up to speed and pick up some of the slack.
Against San Francisco, he played 21 offensive snaps. Last week against the Jets, he played 23. Against the Niners, he carried the ball five times for 23 yards. In the passing game, he was targeted five times, caught three passes for 26 yards.
Last week, he carried the ball six times for 24 yards. He was targeted by Tom Brady seven times, catching four passes for 34 yards. Perhaps most telling is how Lewis has been used in the red zone. Inside the 20, he ran three times. He’s been targeted in the passing game in the red zone once each against San Francisco and the Jets.
“I think Dion has gotten better progressively each practice, each week,” Bill Belichick said. “Based on watching him practice for a couple weeks before we activated him, we felt comfortable playing him, and that’s part of his game, obviously, is his quickness, his change of direction, his acceleration. I think all of those things were evident. I think they’ve gotten better, but I think they were all evident when he returned to practice after the original – I’d say the initial break-in period.”
Lewis jokes about his 5-foot-8 stature and his ability to take the hits in the NFL game.
“I wouldn’t say survival. I would say survival for them,” Lewis joked this week. “Nah, I don’t mind getting hit but I’m not going to let somebody get me. If I can avoid getting hit, I’m definitely going to try and do that. I try to use my lower center of gravity to my advantage.”
Ironically, it wasn’t a hit that ended his 2015 season. He made a cut back to the inside on a run to the right edge against the Redskins in the first half. His left knee gave and he went down. A year later, he’s ready to finally pick up where he left off.
The Patriots officially ended all doubt when it came to Rob Gronkowski on Saturday, placing him on injured reserve and officially ending his 2016 season.
The tight end, who suffered a back injury, finishes his year with 25 receptions for 540 yards with three touchdowns.
To take his spot on the roster, the Patriots activated running back D.J. Foster. The 23-year-old Foster was released from the 53-man roster on Nov. 28, 2016 and signed to the practice squad on Nov. 20. The 6-foot, 195-pounder, was originally signed by the Patriots as a rookie free agent out of Arizona State on May 6 and made the 53-man roster out of training camp. He played in three games and accrued 24 yards rushing on seven attempts for a 3.4 average and caught one pass for two yards.
For more Patriots news, check out weei.com/patriots.
On Friday night, Rob Gronkowski posted a video on Instagram following his back surgery earlier in the day.
A day later, the Patriots tight end posted the same video to Facebook, but with the caption: Succesfull surgery!!! Went as planned. Starting rehab now. #PimpWalker
It’s expected Gronkowski will miss the remainder of the season.
|Fun Facts: 10 things to know heading into Patriots-Rams||at 1:17 pm ET|
After a busy week with Rob Gronkowski needing back surgery and missing the rest of the season, the Patriots will need to put the news behind them and focus on the task at hand of beating the Rams. Los Angeles comes in with a 4-7 record, while the Patriots are 9-2.
Here are 10 things to know heading into the contest.
(As always, thanks to the Patriots media relations staff for the help with some of these from this week’s media guide.)
1. The Patriots haven’t lost two straight home games since 2008. Since 2001, New England is 104-21 at home during the regular season.
2. New England has the best winning percentage in the NFL since 2001 in the month of December. The Patriots are 54-10 (.844) in the month, while the Steelers are next-best at 46-19 (.708)
3. There’s a huge difference for Tom Brady with Gronkowski in the lineup. Since 2010, Brady is 69-17 with a 65.5 percent completion percentage and is averaging 290.8 passing yards per game. Without Gronkowski, Brady is 12-5 with a 57.5 completion percentage and is averaging 257.8 passing yards per game.
4. The Rams are 20th in the NFL in rushing defense, allowing 112.3 yards per game. Since 2001, when outrushing their opposition in the regular season, the Patriots are 125-16.
5. The Patriots are second in the NFL with a 8.7 point average scoring margin. They are right behind the Cowboys, who are at 8.8. Conversely, the Rams are -6.
6. Since 2008, the Patriots lead the NFL with 55 games without turning the ball over. They are 50-5 in those games.
7. James White is fourth in the entire NFL in yards after the catch with 403. Le’Veon Bell leads the league with 491.
8. Since Brady returned, the Patriots have scored in 26 of 28 quarters.
9. With a win, the Patriots will have double-digit wins in 14 straight seasons, joining the 49ers from 1983-98 (16 seasons) as the only teams to have at least 10 straight double-digit win seasons.
10. The magic number is 23. Including the playoffs, New England is 172-15 when scoring 23 or more points under Bill Belichick.
|Rob Gronkowski provides post-surgery video of him with walker||12.02.16 at 10:11 pm ET|
Rob Gronkowski posted a video to Instagram on Friday night — apparently after his back surgery — with a walker making his way gingerly down a hallway.
For more Patriots news, check out weei.com/patriots.
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