|Bill Belichick is ‘way past’ Wes Welker’s hit on Aqib Talib||10.29.14 at 2:12 pm ET|
FOXBORO — Much was made of it at the time when Bill Belichick called it, “one of the worst plays [he’s] seen” when Broncos wide receiver Wes Welker hit then-Patriots cornerback Aqib Talib on an apparent pick play across the middle of the field in last year’s AFC Championship game — knocking Talib out of the game with a hip injury and the Patriots lost the game 26-16, ending their season.
But, Wednesday in advance of the Broncos-Patriots matchup this Sunday, Belichick said he’s put that in the past and actually has “a lot of respect” for Welker.
“[I am] way past that,” Belichick said on a conference call with the Denver media. “I have a lot of respect for Wes and what he did for us and what he’s done for the Broncos and what he’s done throughout his career.”
Welker was a member of the Patriots from 2007-12 before the Broncos signed him prior to the 2013 season as a free agent when Welker and New England couldn’t agree on a contract.
For more Patriots news, check out weei.com/patriots.
|Julian Edelman on MFB: Patriots offense ‘just not clicking’||09.22.14 at 12:07 pm ET|
Julian Edelman, who continues to be the only Patriots wide receiver to have any consistent production this season, joined the Middays with MFB crew for his weekly Monday appearance, one day after a 16-9 victory over the Raiders. To hear the interview, go to the MFB audio on demand page.
The Patriots offense has yet to find a groove this season, and the issues cropped up again Sunday as New England scored only one touchdown.
“It’s an overall offensive thing right now. We’re just not clicking,” Edelman said. “We haven’t played one of our best games yet. It’s early in the year. We’re 2-1, so you’ve got to look at that. We’re taking care of the ball. We just have to improve our third down and red area offense a little better and play those situations out better. I’m sure we’ll be going back this week, we’re going to analyze the film today, take from the bad and build from the good and just try to improve. That’s what you do. If you can improve every day in this game, in this league, that’s when your team starts getting good.”
Although the Patriots have won two games in a row, most of the talk has been negative due to the manner in which the offense has played. Edelman said he understands the reaction.
“There’s a lot of expectations out here, especially with the history that we’ve had,” he said. “But that’s all noise. We just have to continue to try to get better, day in and day out. If we get five plays better next game, then you get 10 plays better the next game, then you start to get into a little something, that’s when you start developing your stride. That’s what we’re going to try to do. We’re going to go out here and we’re going to practice hard. We have an extra day of practice, we have a big game coming up against Kansas City on Monday night, so as long as we just try to improve, everyone just do their job, we’ll be all right.”
|Wes Welker, 2 others reinstated under new NFL drug policy, no word on Brandon Browner, Brian Tyms||09.17.14 at 10:55 am ET|
Wes Welker can now begin getting ready for NFL action. Brian Tyms and Brandon Browner presumably must still wait.
Under terms of the new NFL/NFLPA drug policy, players who tested positive in the offseason for stimulants banned under the old PED policy will be reinstated. Patriots coach Bill Belichick was asked Wednesday if he’s heard from the league on the possible impact the new agreement might have on Browner and Tyms.
“You have to talk to the league about that,” Belichick said. “We don’t know anything. It’s a very confidential policy and it’s really handled between the league and the players. Coaches are really out of it. I’m like Sergeant Schultz [from Hogan’s Heroes]. I don’t know anything.”
The joint announcement released Wednesday morning named only three players who qualify to return this week: Welker, Cowboys defensive back Orlando Scandrick and Rams receiver Stedman Bailey.
This brings up the question of why Browner and Tyms, two Patriots with pre-existing four-game suspensions, must still serve their suspensions.
Dolphins defensive end Dion Jordan also argued that his four-game suspension came from taking a banned stimulant.
NFL.com’s Ian Rapoport reports that the league and players union have agreed to a higher threshold for a positive marijuana test and a two-game suspension upon conviction or plea agreement for driving under the influence.
HGH testing, according to the release, should begin by the end of the month and will be fully implemented this season. NFL.com’s Albert Breer reported Wednesday that union sources claim there should be approximately 20 players affected by retroactive enforcement of the new policy.
The names of all the players who are affected by the new policy won’t be made public, according to Breer. Some players who had entered into the early stages of the program will simply be moved back a step. Names are kept confidential in the early stages of the league’s drug program. Players on the first or second step of the marijuana policy could be moved back according to Breer.
|Adam Schefter on MFB: ‘I do not believe [Roger Goodell] saw that videotape’||09.12.14 at 12:53 pm ET|
ESPN’s Adam Schefter made his weekly appearance on Middays with MFB to discuss NFL news and the Patriots’ Week 2 game against the Vikings. To hear the interview, go to the MFB audio on demand page.
Schefter reported Friday that the league and the players association are close on finalizing a new drug policy, and it could have a major affect on players currently under suspension, including standout wide receivers Josh Gordon and Wes Welker.
“Here’s the deal, basically: They’re going to vote this afternoon at some point, by early evening, on a new drug policy,” Schefter said. “The feeling is it’s going to pass. I think there’s a basic, tentative agreement. But each of the player reps will have to vote on it. And once that happens, they can coordinate the vote later today, they get the results, assuming it passes, there’ll be a new drug policy. And part of that agreement will be to have many of the suspensions under the performance-enhancing device policy, the PED policy and the substance-abuse policy, they will wind up being reduced or going away.
“So, everyone will be different, but a case like Wes Welker, I think he’ll be allowed to play. Now, it’s Friday, not in the game plan, tough to imagine he’s going to play this week, but maybe he does. A case like Josh Gordon, facing a yearlong suspension, my understanding is it’s going to be an eight-game suspension. So, there’ll be different circumstances in each player. We’ll have to find out how it affects each one.”
Patriots cornerback Brandon Browner is sitting out the first four games of the season, and Schefter isn’t sure how he’ll be affected.
“I think the violation may have occurred prior to the agreement, so I don’t know how he’s impacted,” Schefter said. “My guess — just a guess, and I haven’t asked anybody this — is that he won’t be impacted by it. But I don’t know it.”
|Poll: Does Tom Brady know more about Wes Welker’s alleged drug use?||09.04.14 at 11:08 am ET|
During his Wednesday press conference in Foxboro, Patriots quarterback Tom Brady was asked about former teammate and close friend Wes Welker, who was suspended four games by the league for violating the league’s PED policy.
There have been reports that Welker took a recreational drug while attending the Kentucky Derby in May, and that’s what prompted the positive test. Welker, who has denied the accusation, was spotted spending time with Brady that day.
When asked Wednesday if he saw Welker take anything, Brady let out a big laugh and said, “I’ve got no comment on that, no.”
Do you think Tom Brady knows more about Wes Welker's alleged drug use?
- Yes, he has to be aware of what Welker was doing (50%, 199 Votes)
- No, just because they're friends doesn't mean Welker couldn't hide something from him (50%, 196 Votes)
Total Voters: 395
|Mike Petraglia, Chris Price on what to expect in Patriots 2014 season opener||09.03.14 at 5:15 pm ET|
FOXBORO — WEEI.com’s Mike Petraglia and Chris Price preview the 2014 season opener for the New England Patriots as they travel to South Florida on Sunday to take on the Miami Dolphins. Petraglia and Price talk about what head coach Bill Belichick and quarterback Tom Brady had to say about their 15th season in the NFL together and what it means for the Patriots’ chances of having another very successful season and getting the season off on the right foot.
FOXBORO — Even for the closest of friends, there’s a time to put friendship aside and take care of business.
That was the message from Patriots quarterback Tom Brady Wednesday at his press conference when he was asked about the four-game suspension of close friend Wes Welker for violation of the NFL drug policy.
“I don’t have a lot of thoughts or comments on that,” Brady said. “That’s Wes’ situation and their team. Obviously I have plenty to worry about with this week and this team. As a friend you always hope for the best, but it’s not friend time, it’s opponent time, and I’m focused on the Dolphins.”
Brady and Welker were spotted together in May at the Kentucky Derby in Louisville, Ky. It was at the Kentucky Derby where, according to Pro Football Talk, Welker took an illegal substance containing ecstasy and amphetamines and was later tagged positive by an NFL-mandated drug test.
Brady was asked Wednesday if he saw Welker taking any such substances.
“I have no comment on that,” Brady said with a heavy laugh.