Karen Guregian highlights Vince Wilfork who was the featured speaker at the team's Hall Speaker Series last night, treating a packed house with his warmth, candor and sense of humor.
What part of the NFL he’d like to change if he could. "One thing I’d get rid of is the penalties, certain penalties," he said. "I can do without them. You have a guy that’s making $30 million a year (the quarterback), but you can’t touch him. C’mon, let’s be for real now. Me as a defensive lineman, it’s OK for somebody to hold me up, and another guy to come and chop my legs, and I can’t protect myself. I can do without that. That’s probably the main thing. Being able to hit a quarterback good. We need that. We need that back right there. "But you hurt the franchise of your team if you’re allowed to tee off on the quarterback. Cuz you know, quarterbacks are wimpy."
Who is his favorite lineman was to play against. "I think [Logan Mankins] is the best guard that’s playing football," Wilfork said. "He’s tough, he’s nasty, he’s everything in a lineman. I love practicing with him. It’s a good matchup. That’s what you’re looking for, especially in the middle of practice. If practice isn’t going a certain way, you go start something, or you go start a fight just to get a little spark, just to get the day jumping off. But I like those matchups."
Why he stopped trash talking, after being "bad" in college. "You play against guys you’ve played against all your career, it’s like a mutual respect. Plus with a lot of trash talking, you lose your breath. You get tired. I don’t waste my time. But if I have to, I can."
Alex Marvez (Fox Sports) Free agency report card: New England Patriots - Grade B.
Impact moves: Rather than signing "sure-thing" free agents at a loftier price, the Patriots went the bargain-basement route. Guard Robert Gallery, wide receiver Anthony Gonzalez and Bobby Carpenter are former first-round picks signed to modest deals. The Patriots spent a little more to add wide receiver Brandon Lloyd (St. Louis) and defensive end Jonathan Fanene (Cincinnati).
Significant losses: Defensive end Mark Anderson, who had a 10-sack season in 2011, shuffled off to Buffalo. The Patriots continue to avoid making a significant financial investment in running backs by letting leading rusher BenJarvus Green-Ellis leave to Cincinnati.
Top draft need: Forced to play with a patchwork secondary for most of last season, the Patriots could use a youth infusion at cornerback and safety.
Analysis: Although some Patriots fans would love splashier signings — particularly a pass-rusher — New England’s 27-5 regular-season record and Super Bowl appearance over the past two seasons is proof that Bill Belichick knows what he’s doing.
- Draft Prospect Review: DT / ILB. (16.30 min. program)
- Mike Reiss reports DT Kyle Love has signed his one-year exclusive-rights free agent tender.
- Christopher Price identifies six Patriots who are in uncertain situations as we near the halfway point of the NFL offseason.
- Jeff Howe thinks the Patriots should draw plenty of national attention when the NFL's schedule gets released tonight.
- Mark Farinella doesn't see Bill Belichick selecting many special teamers come draft day.
- Tom E. Curran breaks down the Defensive End/Tackle position in this year's draft, and looks at who would be the best fit for the Patriots.
- Mark Farinella says the Patriots will have a monopoly on the best TEs in the game for at least one more year, and won't choose one from a weak draft class.
- Bill Reynolds details Rob Gronkowski's appearance at URI last week, and his cult of Gronk fans.
- Tom E. Curran says Wes Welker isn't expected to participate in Phase One of Patriots workouts, but it's not a major issue.
- Mike Rodak reports the Patriots will work-out Ohio LB Noah Keller today.
- Mike Reiss profiles possible Patriots in this year's draft: DL Kendall Reyes (Connecticut).
- Tom E. Curran picks potential Patriots heading into the draft: RB David Wilson (Virginia Tech).
- Jeff Howe posts the transcript of his Patriots Twitter Q&A from yesterday.
- Ricky Doyle notes Gino Cappelletti was honored at Fenway Park yesterday by throwing out the first pitch before the game.
- James Walker (ESPN) Strength of schedules favor AFC East.
- James Walker (ESPN) Recapping last week in the AFC East.
- Mike Florio (ProFootballTalk) Franchise players can participate in offseason programs, even if unsigned.
- offseason program is crucial. (Nat'l Football Post) For young talent, the
- James Walker (ESPN) Will Wes Welker become an issue?
- Gregg Rosenthal (NFL.com) Welcome to Schedule Release Day at the NFL. /A three hour special?
- Matt Bowen (Nat'l Football Post) How do players view the NFL schedule release?
- Alex Marvez (Fox Sports) Free agency report card: AFC and NFC.
- Michael Lombardi (NFL.com) Bill Walsh's NFL Draft philosophies: Six lessons from the master.
- Clifton Brown (Sporting News) How to build NFL champion franchise in six easy steps.
- Jason Cole (Yahoo! Sports) Lingering NFL offseason issues, best available free agents and winners/losers.
- Mike Florio (ProFootballTalk) Eliminating kickoffs would change the game too dramatically.
- Brian Billick (Fox Sports) Position breakdown: Running back.
- Judy Battista (NY Times) NFL and union meet on bounties.
- Mike Florio (ProFootballTalk) Goodell won't submit to interview to get Williams tapes.
- Josh Katzowitz (CBS Sports) NFLPA releases statement on Williams' tape, said it knew of existence.
- Mike Freeman (CBS Sports) Union on wrong side of Saints case?
- Mike Florio (ProFootballTalk) Brees reiterates that NFL has provided "no meaningful evidence" of bounties.
- Michael David Smith (ProFootballTalk) facing bounty discipline. ,