Mike Reiss tells us why Fox Sports' John Czarnecki and AOL Fanhouse' Dave Goldberg voted for Devin McCourty as the AP Defensive Rookie of the Year.
Dave Goldberg: "I went with McCourty over [Ndamukong] Suh because I felt that even as a rookie, he transformed the secondary from a rather lackluster unit into one that helped them record the NFL's best record,"
"Not only the  interceptions but also the coverage. He certainly outplayed [Darrelle] Revis, who made All-Pro on reputation. Revis played well late, but held out and, as holdouts usually do, pulled a muscle. McCourty never played like a rookie. In the games I saw, both in person and on TV, he was rarely hesitant and almost always aggressive, which is uncommon for a rookie."
John Czarnecki: "For me, it was pretty simple. Suh should have been good. Some teams liked him better than [No. 1 overall pick Sam] Bradford. But I don't think Suh out-performed McCourty, who had seven interceptions. I never viewed [McCourty] as a starter when he was drafted, but as a nickelback, someone in the scheme. He played way above his draft measurements, in my opinion.
"He looks like a cover cornerback and he was exceptional in the second half of the season. Yes, teams tested him, but he fought back and made a lot of plays in my assessment. I saw enough games from Suh where he relaxed and took a lot of plays off. I didn't see that from McCourty. Helluva player with a huge upside. He probably was New England's best player in the secondary."
Karen Guregian talks about how former Patriots fullback and unrestricted free agent Heath Evans is preparing for a lockout - and for possible retirement.
"There’s only two places I’m going to play. That’s the New England Patriots [team stats]. And that’s the New Orleans Saints," Evans said. "I refuse to lose. I refuse to play for a head coach I’m not absolutely in love with, and these two head coaches (Belichick and the Saints’ Sean Payton) I’d run through a brick wall for. And that’s that."
Karen Guregian notes that during the Pebble Beach National Pro-Am broadcast, Peter Costas analyzed both the swings of Belichick and Edwards and was critical of both of them. To which Belichick cracked:
"I think based on that, Herm and I are better sticking to football."
- PFW Debate Friday: Owners or players: Who do you support in the NFL versus NFLPA labor battle?
- The New England Patriots have announced new position responsibilities for four members on the current coaching staff.
- Erik Scalavino reviews the roster at each position: Quarterback.
- Patriots Roster Report - 2/11/11 Edition. Listen as we discuss recent coaching changes and coaching duties for 2011. (12:21 min)
- Mike Reiss and Mike Rodak analyze the Patriots' recent coaching staff changes.
- Christopher Price takes a closer look at the coaching changes made by the Patriots on Friday afternoon.
- Bill Reynolds catches up with Patriots new offensive coordinator Bill O'Brien, who has deep roots in Rhode Island.
- Mike Rodak helps us get to know coaching assistants Patrick Graham and Brian Flores.
- Christopher Price analyzes the impact of Mike Woicik on the Patriots franchise.
- Shalise Manza Young notes Logan Mankins has yet to be tagged, but looks to make $10.5 million when he does.
- Ian Rapoport reports Matt Light wants to wait and see before discussing a future contract with the Patriots until after a new CBA is finalized.
- Mike Reiss offers his weekend quick-hit thoughts from around the NFL and the Patriots.
- Jeff Howe answers his weekly Patriots Mailbag: Larry Fitzgerald is worth a pair of picks, while adding a veteran LB could be the biggest move of the offseason.
- Mike Reiss tells us Rick Gosselin of the Dallas Morning News ranked the Patriots special teams at the top of the NFL in his annual special teams rankings.
- Karen Guregian reports Bill Belichick was paired up with Herm Edwards for the Pebble Beach National Pro-Am this week. Check out the hooded wonder teeing off here.
- WEEI highlights Adam Schefter's Friday guest appearance on the Dennis & Callahan show. Schefter says everything is on hold until the CBA is solved.
- WEEI scouts out potential Patriots for this year's draft: WR Greg Little (UNC).
- Mike Rodak focuses on who would be a free-agent fit at each position: Inside Linebacker, Tight Ends and Defensive Line.
- Christopher Price focuses on potential free agents for the Patriots: CB Brian Williams (Falcons)
- Jeff Howe think Chad Ochocinco would bring excitement at WR, but Donte Stallworth is the best free-agent fit for New England.
- Jeff Howe sees Zach Miller as the best free-agent fit for the Patriots in the highly unlikely case that the Pats sign a tight end.
- Jim Donaldson writes NFL players should take a cue from their baseball brethren.
- Tim Graham (ESPN) Patriots make changes on coaching staff.
- Tim Graham (ESPN) Patriots wise to franchise Logan Mankins.
- Phil Simms (SI) Behind the Mic: What do the Jets and Patriots need to do this offseason to make it to the Super Bowl? (2 min. video)
- Adam Rank (NFL.com) Six things we love about the 2000s.
- Andrew Brandt (Natl Football Post) The Rookie Sacrifice: NFL, NFLPA proposals unveiled.
- Peter King (SI) MMQB: Hall of Fame process could be better, but it will never be perfect.
- Gene Wojciechowski (ESPN) Do fans really want 18 NFL games?
- Mike Florio (ProFootballTalk) Super Bowl lawsuit raises interesting questions regarding revenue sharing.
- Adam Schein (Fox Sports) Don't panic over NFL labor talks (yet).
- Sporting News Panthers owner Jerry Richardson allegedly criticizes intelligence of players.
- Aaron Wilson (Nat'l Football Post) Jay Feely says Jerry Richardson talked down to Peyton Manning.
- Mike Florio (ProFootballTalk) When lockout starts, league policies go out the window.
- Fox Sports Top 10 NFL Free Agents.
- Adam Rank (NFL.com) Pick Six: Things to do on first football-less Sunday.
- Brian Lewis (NY Post) Rex makes latest Super guarantee.