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New England Patriots Links 2/14/11 - Fans Would Love A New CBA For Valentine's Day

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 [7] 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."