First of all I'd like to thank God for one, for blessing me with the opportunity to come back and be a part of a great organization, and also be a part of another great organization back in Seattle. Unfortunately things didn't work out, but that's part of the business, and I'm very thankful to be back.
Are you going to be ready for Sunday?
Yeah, I hope so. I hope I'm showing Coach Belichick enough today. I know there's going to be a little bit more tomorrow and Thursday and Friday. He makes that decision.
How are you a different player than you were four years ago?
A lot more knowledge. I understand the game of football. I truly understand the game and how to study people, how to study guys, my opponent. I think my first four years here I was just playing off all athleticism, and I was getting away with it for a little bit. There were a couple games here and there back in the past. I think now I know how to sit down and break down the film and watch my opponent.
(On his role with the team...)
I'm going to try my best. I'm just a piece of the puzzle. I'm not the answer to anything, I'm just a piece of the puzzle. I think these guys have already been stitched and stoned with the things they're doing. Coach Belichick has been running the ship the same way: straightforward. You get in, do your job, and that's that. That's what I'm going to do.
Mike Reiss offers his thoughts on the Deion Branch trade.
I think there are a few reasons why Branch is the right choice for the Patriots. First, it would be risky to go with the current group at receiver for the rest of the season, because in the event of injury the offense could be handcuffed. Given the recent injury history of Brandon Tate and Julian Edelman, I think it's smart business to add another layer of depth. As for Branch, I think what we're seeing is a return to the way the Patriots used to play offense and with that, Branch had greater value to the Patriots -- especially during an in-season trade -- than perhaps any team in the NFL. The fact that Branch can step in and play immediately is huge. There is no benefit of an offseason to get acclimated. I think that is another huge part in analyzing this trade and why simply acquiring any receiver just isn't as realistic. I thought we saw that show up a bit Monday night with the Vikings and Moss, as Moss couldn't be part of the two-minute package because he wasn't fully up to speed in Minnesota's system.
- Erik Scalavino reports on the Patriots bringing back Branch.
- Ask PFW: Offense branching out.
- Deion Branch Press Conference. (10.53 min. video) Plus transcript.
- Patriots Today - Breaking down the Branch move. (4.48 min. video)
- Locker Room Uncut - Players react to Branch addition. (2.36 min. video)
- Patriots Today - Patriots Ladies' Luncheon. (2.25 min. video)
- Monique Walker notes Deion Branch has been well-received in his return, and amidst all that's changed he's excited to be back.
- Mike Reiss says Deion Branch and the Pats offense hope to rekindle their championship spark.
- Ian Rapoport notes Branch admits he doesn't have the same athleticism, but he does have more knowledge and experience and a better understanding of the game.
- Tom E. Curran questions if a brittle, 31-year-old receiver be a practical addition to the Patriots offense.
Jerry Thornton wrestles with the return of Deion Branch. Pretty funny description of Pete Townsend's Super Bowl halftime performance.
- Dan Duggan reveals Julian Edelman had prepared for his second season by watching film of Deion Branch to break down what made him a favorite target of Brady.
- CSNNE Troy Brown analyzes the Deion Branch trade and explains just how he'll fit into the offense. (2.52 min. video)
- Kirk Minihane reports on the locker room reaction to the return of Deion Branch.
- Ron Borges recaps the contract dispute that drove Deion Branch out of New England in 2006.
- Ian Rapoport notes Patriots owner Robert Kraft sounds pretty optimistic about a 2010 labor resolution.
- Bob Ryan insists the Patriots are playing with house money this season.
- Mike Reiss looks at the Patriots post-bye record. They're 8-2 under Belichick.
- Mike Reiss analyzes the team's offensive playing time stats.
- Ian Rapoport looks at the matchup between center Dan Koppen and Ravens nose tackle Terrence Cody.
- Mike Reiss answers his weekly reader mailbag.
- Ian Rapoport Patriots Notebook: Patriots haven't moved on from last year's humiliating playoff loss to the Ravens at home; Brady says the spat about hair never happened; Nick Kaczur was placed on IR; Matthew Slater had learned a lot from Randy Moss and now plans to hang with Branch to learn from him; Fred Taylor missed practice but Terrence Wheatley and Mike Wright were back.
- Kerry J. Byrne (Cold Hard Football Facts) Statistical secrets of NFL's great winners: Starr, Graham, Brady.
- Tim Graham (ESPN) Brady concedes Pats' offense will change.
- Matt Bowen (Nat'l Football Post) Is the best football in the AFC?
- Randy Cross (Nat'l Football Post) The NFL at the quarter pole.
- Judy Battista (NY Times) Parity: Trying to muddle through equally.
- Clevelandterminated the contract of WR Sam Aiken. .com Browns signed QB Brett Ratliff to the active roster and
- Peter King (SI) MMQB Tuesday Edition.
- Don Banks (SI) Goodell mum on Favre for now, more from fall owner's meeting.
- Les Carpenter (Yahoo! Sports) Once-endearing Favre no longer charming.
- Michael David Smith (ProFootballTalk) Jim Schwartz says Lions didn't try to run it up on Rams.
- Brian Lowry (Fox Sports) From the couch: TV can’t catch Jets-Vikings lightning.
VIEW FROM BALTIMORE
- Ken Murray (Baltimore Sun) Scouting report on Patriots.
- John Eisenberg (BaltimoreRavens.com) Fast start doesn't guarantee anything.
- Jamison Hensley (Baltimore Sun) Ravens attempt to end Patriots streak after byes.
- Peter Schmuck (Baltimore Sun) Don't be deluded -- Patriots without Moss aren't weaker.
- Ken Murray (Baltimore Sun) Harbaugh: preparation the same for Moss or Branch.
- Edward Lee (Baltimore Sun) Impressive kickoff coverage unit prepares for test in Patriots' Tate.
- Ryan Mink (BaltimoreRavens.com) Ravens' versatility burdening defenses.
- Mike Duffy (BaltimoreRavens.com) Ravens triggering opponent penalties.
- Jamison Hensley (Baltimore Sun) Could Rice see more red-zone carries?