New England Patriots Links 12/29/10 - Patriots Revisit Miami For Season Finale

Bill Belichick addresses the media during a conference call Tuesday.

We've turned the page from Buffalo here to Miami. Going back over the last game [at Miami], it was a game that really hinged on a few really big plays but it's hard to count on anything like that happening in a game. It's been a long time since we played them and I think those teams have changed some. We've got a lot of work to do. We've got a lot of things to get ready for here. They're certainly doing a good job on defense - in the red area and not giving up very many points. They're playing very strong on that side of the ball. [They] have some playmakers on offense - the [Davone] Besses, [Brandon] Marshalls, of course the running backs [and] guys like that. We have a lot of new things to get re-acclimated with and be ready to go on Sunday.

Nick Caserio responds to a question asking how rare is it that the Patriots have 21 undrafted players on the roster.

I guess it means we should have drafted some of those players.

However they end up on our team, to a degree, we can control that, but in the end, once they're here, everybody is judged based on their performance and everybody is presented with the same opportunities and then it's up to the players to perform on a week-to-week basis. I don't think the guys that are here are any different than some of the other teams and the situations they've been in. However they get here, they get here. Once they're all here, we essentially tell them the same thing and the expectation is the same regardless of who the player is.

I think those players that have come in in that situation have come in and they've worked hard and they've made the most of their opportunities. It's a credit to them. It's a credit to the player. Obviously the odds were stacked against them a little bit, so to speak, but I think they worked hard and they put themselves in a position where they could make a contribution to the team. As an organization, it think that's all you can really ask.

Pepper Johnson is asked about the Patriots not having a defensive coordinator this year.

See, I don't agree with that because I think we have the ultimate defensive coordinator with Bill Belichick. He's always going to be my coach. With him coming in and [with] some of the things that he does in our meeting rooms and orchestrating the meetings and the players and the [advice] and all that stuff, to me it's priceless and I think we have the ultimate defensive coordinator.

TEAM TALK

LOCAL LINKS

  • Greg A. Bedard reports the Patriots had six players named to the Pro Bowl yesterday and it was good to see this team rewarded and respected.
  • Karen Guregian discusses the Patriots six Pro Bowl selections.
  • Christopher Price focuses on the Patriots having six players selected to the Pro Bowl this year.
  • Karen Guregian pores over the Patriots' potential playoff opponents.
  • Mike Reiss offers some picked-up pieces from Belichick's conference call with reporters Tuesday.
  • Mike Reiss notes the CBS broadcasting team for the Patriots' season-finale against the Dolphins will be Bill Macatee (play-by-play) and Rich Gannon (analysis).
  • Mary Paoletti says if you look back, Belichick usually plays his starters.
  • Robert Lee says the record-setting Patriots continue to leave doubters in their wake.
  • Mike Reiss takes a look at where the Patriots rank in key statistical categories through 15 games, noting the improving scoring and red-zone defense.
  • Mike Reiss looks at the team's tackle leaderboard and notes Jerod Mayo needs 14 to hit 200. That's nutty.
  • Mike Reiss looks onward and upward in this week's Patriots Mailbag.
  • Mike Reiss revisits that Patriots' coordinator story-line.
  • Mike Reiss rewinds the tape to look at the injury that has kept DL Mike Wright out of commission for five games so far.
  • Mike Rodak re-watches the television copy of Sunday's game against the Bills and offers some of his observations: First quarter - Second quarter - Second half.
  • Karen Guregian Patriots Notebook: Pepper Johnson still looks up to Belichick; Nick Caserio credits the players for their diligence in protecting the football; Belichick is still considering whether the starters will play on Sunday; Mike Wright is still suffering the effects of a concussion from the Nov. 21 game against the Colts; Zoltan Mesko punted pretty well in nasty conditions Sunday in Buffalo.
  • Shalise Manza Young Patriots Notebook: It doesn't matter how you came to be a member of the team, but once you're there you contribute; DL Ryan Wendell made his first start Sunday and graded out fairly well; Belichick mentioned the flu that hit the Patriots encompassed a variety of symptoms that were addressed by the medical staff.
  • Jerry Thornton says farewell to the year of the sports sex scandal.
  • Curt Shilling on the "Decade of Dominance": Ten years of Boston Sports. (6.14 min. video)

NATIONAL NEWS

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