Ian Rapoport says Wes Welker knows the passing game needs to be on point Sunday.
"Obviously our O-line is going to have to do a great job and then the pick ups for the backs and tight ends is going to be key for us and receivers getting open quick and make sure we’re getting open and setting our guys up and getting separation where Tommy (Brady) can make a good throw," Welker said.
"I think guys being able to do everything," Welker said, "as far as playing the slot, play outside, do different things and run different routes and everybody kind of collectively getting open and Tom finding the right guy, it definitely helps."
"I feel like [the offense without Randy Moss has] kind of been the same and things like that for the most part," Welker said. "I feel like guys did a good job of getting open and Tom was able to find them. We were really able to get going toward the fourth quarter."
Jerod Mayo appeared on WEEI this morning and talks about Brandon Meriweather's hit on TE Todd Heap.
"I wouldn’t say it gave us a spark, but at the same time, it kind of kept them out of the middle of the field, and that’s what we needed," he said, adding: "That hit kind of changed the game a little bit. Yeah, I would say that."
Stephen Neal talked with Dale & Holley about the Chargers being a different team at home and on the road.
"It’s kind of strange how you have the home team, and they get out there, and they get after it, fast-starting team," Neal said. "And then you get the road team, and they just haven’t played as well on the road. Unfortunately, we’ve got to play them at [their] home this week. You’ve just to execute against them and hopefully do all the right stuff, and hopefully you’ll come out and get in front of them and play from ahead and do pretty well."
- Erik Scalavino reports the Patriots will fly out today, rather than the usual Saturday travel day, to give the team time to adjust.
- Erik Scalavino briefs us on Thursday's practice at Gillette.
- Patriots-Chargers Thursday Injury Report.
- John Cockrell Friday Out-Takes: What passes for protection?
- The Hall at Patriot Place launches its newest exhibit – "A Wild Ride … the story of the 1985 Patriots 25 years later."
- Patriots Today - What to expect from Rivers and Co. (3.24 min. video)
- Patriots Today - Chung vs. Gates. (2.24 min. video)
- Locker Room Uncut - Thoughts from Welker, Koppen. (3.15 min. video)
- Rich Levine notes the Patriots are preparing for a much better than advertised Chargers team.
- Danny Picard notes the Chargers are already feeling a sense of urgency.
- Mike Reiss gives his three keys to a Patriots victory over the Chargers on Sunday.
- Mike Reiss and Tedy Bruschi break down Pats-Chargers. This matchup is a classic trap game, but Belichick won't let Pats fall for it.
- Gary Marbry offers a stats-infused breakdown of the Pats-Chargers matchup.
Ian Rapoport notes that with many of the usual suspects gone, Pats-Chargers doesn't feel like the hate-filled rivalry that it was.
- Ian Rapoport details the memorable Pats-Bolts battles from 2005-2008.
- Tom E. Curran ranks the Pats vs. Chargers during the Bill Belichick era.
- Christopher Price notes it was nine years ago this month that Tom Brady posted his first comeback win of his career against the Chargers.
- Rich Levine says home field won't be the only advantage for the Chargers. They have a deep offensive attack, defensive pressure and Antonio Gates.
- Jeff Howe previews Pats-Chargers and calls this a tough road test for the Pats, who can pull even with the idle Jets at the top of the AFC East.
- Mike Reiss points out the four different D-line combinations used in five games.
- Dan Duggan notes DL Brandon Deaderick's rise from seventh-round pick to starter. He gets lots of praise from Belichick, Wilfork and Warren.
- Michael Vega focuses on Sebastian Vollmer's valuable versatility.
- Mark Farinella is impressed with the play of Pat Chung so far and says he'll be a key part of stopping the deep throwing San Diego Chargers.
- Robert Lee focuses on Jerod Mayo, who has become the Patriots version of a heat-seeking rocket.
- Mike Reiss discusses the crucial but often overlooked hidden yardage in a game that comes from stellar special teams play.
- Tony Massarotti lauds the Patriots' special teams play that has been consistently good since the start of the season.
- Mike Reiss notes the Patriots have no worries about pass protection as they prepare to face San Diego.
- Mike Reiss explains why special teams could play a key role in Sunday's game as the Chargers have given up three return TDs this season and had two punts blocked.
- Mike Reiss offers the transcript of his weekly online chat. Terrific insight here as usual.
- Ian Rapoport Patriots Notebook: Robert Kraft mentioned that he's had to turn people away for the first time because there were no tickets available, but the Chargers are having trouble avoiding blackouts; Philip Rivers leads the NFL in passing with 2008 yards and will be a true test of focus for the Pats CBs; Wes Welker appreciated how every receiver is able to run every route; Injury update.
- Boston Globe Patriots Notebook: Brandon Meriweather is a star in the NFL video sent out to all 32 teams to demonstrate bad hits and good hits; Ty Warren said he and his rehab are "doing good." His focus is regaining strength in his hip and he has progressed to low-impact exercises on the elliptical machine; Terrell Suggs says he's over his exchange with Brady but won't stop talking about it; Dan Koppen will line up against former BC teammate Antonio Garay, now a nose tackle for San Diego; Injury updates.
WEEI Patriots Friday: Highlights from Jerod Mayo and Stephen Neal.
- Jim Lazar makes his Week 7 picks. Pats over Bolts 20-17.
- Kirk Minihane offers one man's Week 7 NFL picks. Pats over Chargers 27-24.
- Tim Graham (ESPN) Numbers add up to a tight one for Patriots.
- Jason Feller (NFL.com) Patriots among teams primed to earn tough road wins.
- Jenny Dell (ESPN) AccuScore projections for Pats-Chargers.
- Dennis J. Georgatos (NFL FanHouse) Patriots vs. Chargers preview, score and more.
- Michael David Smith (Wall St. Journal) San Diego, the greatest bad team ever.
- Tim Graham (ESPN) Could a UFL team really beat the Bills?
- Don Banks (SI) Players should hit the field before overreacting to NFL reinforcement.
- ESPN Patriots-Chargers prediction roundup.
- Peter King (SI) Weekend Pickoff: NFL Week 7. Pats win 31-29.
VIEW FROM SAN DIEGO
- Kevin Acee (San Diego Union-Tribune) Chargers, Patriots have played a lot.
- Jay Posner (San Diego Union-Tribune) For CBS' Simms, 'X' marks the spot for Chargers' 'L's.
- Kevin Acee (San Diego Union-Tribune) Gates likely a Sunday decision.
- Kevin Acee (San Diego Union-Tribune) Sad sack story.