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New England Patriots Links 9/22/11 - Strength of Depth Will Be Tested Sunday in Buffalo

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<em>Bill's rocking a new hoodie.  The neckline hasn't been ripped open yet in frustration</em>.
Bill's rocking a new hoodie. The neckline hasn't been ripped open yet in frustration.

Tom Brady elaborates on what he is seeing from Buffalo that looks different from last year.

They're playing good; they're playing good football. They went into Kansas City and really gave it to them pretty good. [Kansas City] didn't really do much offensively; I think [Buffalo's] defense really put a lot of pressure on them. They've got a lot of good players over there. They're really big, physical players, athletic at linebacker, good coverage in the secondary. I think playing against them last year in that second game - it wasn't our best performance out there either. We scored points - I think we were the beneficiaries of a lot of turnovers - but we know how good of a defense [they have]. They really match receivers tight. Its tight coverages, tight throws and they can get after the passer too. [Shawne] Merriman's back to his old self and Kyle Williams is one of the best interior guys we face all year. There're a bunch of different challenges. I think they're good in all phases and Buffalo is always a tough place to play. It should be a fun weekend.

Jeff Howe reports Landon Cohen is excited to get another opportunity with the Patriots after the injury to Myron Pryor.

"That's out of my control," Cohen said Wednesday. "The only thing I can do is give it 100 percent of my effort and let the chips fall where they may."

"It feels good," Cohen said. "I'm ready to get started. Big week against Buffalo, and I'm excited for the opportunity."

Erik Scalavino shares his Wednesday practice notes.

Practice players of the past week were rewarded again with black jerseys today (given only after victories). They were quarterback Brian Hoyer and cornerback Antwaun Molden from the active roster, and rookie linebacker Jeff Tarpinian, tight end Garrett Mills, and offensive lineman Matt Kopa from the practice squad.

TEAM TALK

LOCAL LINKS

  • Steve Silva points out Tom Brady passed the credit around for the Patriots offensive success.
  • Karen Guregian notes it's the pre-snap calls from Tom Brady that thwart opposing defenses, but he's not the only one who's got the smarts at the line of scrimmage.
  • Ian Rapoport confirms Chargers DT Antonio Garay is fined $15K for his low hit on Brady last week.
  • Mike Reiss reports Patrick Chung underwent surgery on his right thumb this week after injuring it Sunday against the Chargers.
  • Christopher Price analyzes the impact of Pryor's move to IR and looks at the newest Patriot, Phillip Adams.
  • Ian Rapoport talks about the injuries to Pryor and Koppen and other key players.
  • Chris Forsberg notes the Patriots already are bringing in reinforcements due to the injury bug.
  • Mike Reiss notes Rookie CB Ras-I Dowling, who left Sunday's win against the Chargers with a leg injury was back at practice.
  • Ian Rapoport focuses on Patriots strength and conditioning coach Harold Nash and how he gauges the team's overall fitness.
  • Mark Farinella likens the Patriots to Jekyll and Hyde.
  • Christopher Price says Devin McCourty is seeking consistency after clearly being tested by opposing QBs so far.
  • Christopher Price says the Patriots struck gold with the acquisition of veteran OL Brian Waters.
  • Mark Farinella says this Buffalo trip is all business for the Gronkowski brothers, who were born and raised in western NY.
  • Tim Whelan Jr. notes that it's rare for the Bills to be 2-0 starting the season and the Patriots are expecting a tough game Sunday.
  • Michael Whitmer details Ryan Fitzpatrick's path to the NFL from Harvard as the Buffalo QB tries to break the Patriots' 15 game win streak against them.
  • Nick Underhill reports Bill Belichick can't find any weak points with Buffalo RB Fred Jackson.
  • Chris Forsberg offers some nuggets from Ryan Fitzpatrick and Chan Gailey in their conference calls with the media.
  • Christopher Price looks at the target breakdown in the passing game for 2011.
  • Mike Reiss & Chris Forsberg serve up some quick hits from the Patriots' locker room yesterday.
  • Shalise Manza Young Patriots Notebook: Pat Chung's availability for Sunday is in question after having thumb surgery this week; The safety position already lacked experienced depth and is now even thinner; Tom Brady was named AFC Offensive player of the week for the second week in a row; Injury update; Patriots worked out two punters yesterday, although Zoltan Mesko took part in practice.
  • Ian Rapoport Patriots Notebook: Tom Brady says fake injuries are 'not really bothersome' but the league feels otherwise; Kevin Faulk was a master at picking up blitzes, but Danny Woodhead has problems stopping the bigger guys; Brady doesn't sympathize with the Buffalo fan base that has been through so much losing because "We're trying to win every time we play also."; Injury update.

NATIONAL NEWS

VIEW FROM BUFFALO

  • Bills Daily (Billsdaily.com) Gameday Preview: Key matchups, game plan, and injury update.
  • Jerry Sullivan (Buffalo News) Stakes rise when facing New England.
  • Sal Maiorana (Democrat and Chronicle) Buffalo Bills need to overcome spell Tom Brady has on teams.
  • Mark Gaughan (Buffalo News) Bills 'D' turns the page against Pats.
  • Mark Gaughan (Buffalo News) Roosevelt ready to make most of his chance.