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New England Patriots Links 5/18/12 - Versatile, Focused FB Spencer Larsen Ready to Play Wherever Needed

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<em>Tough, competitive Spencer Larsen is excited to play for a winning organization</em>.
Tough, competitive Spencer Larsen is excited to play for a winning organization.

Field Yates checks in with FB Spencer Larsen's college coach Mike Stoops for some background.

"He was very quick. He was quick to the football and quick at the line of scrimmage," said Stoops, who now serves as defensive coordinator at Oklahoma. "Certainly that’s a lot what fullbacks have to do -- get on defensive linemen and linebackers very quickly at the point of attack. He’s a fearless guy that played downhill as a linebacker and just kind of switched roles up between a linebacker and a fullback. They’re similar in a lot of ways."

"His football IQ made that transition probably a little simpler," Stoops said. "Because of him playing [linebacker], he understands angles very well and understands what they’re trying to accomplish from a defensive perspective, I think it makes him probably a much smarter football player."

Stoops noted Larsen's off-the-charts intangibles, toughness, competitiveness, and stated that Larsen "had a great attitude about everything he did."

Karen Guregian says Wes Welker is out to prove he's worth a long-term contract, just like he's proved naysayers wrong his whole life.

"If they see me out there at OTAs and minicamps and everything else, and I’m still out there winning and doing what I need to do to help the team win, you know what, the ball’s in their court to make something happen," Welker said yesterday. "That’s kind of my mindset. To go out and show them I deserve it."

"That’s the only thing — staying healthy. And I will. I’ll be fine," Welker insisted, almost willing the football gods. "To me, in my mind, this is really a two-year, $21-$21.5 million deal (applying the franchise tag a second time). Because I’m going to play well, do my thing, help the team win games, and we’ll be at the same spot next year. I’ll make $21.5 (million) in the next two years, and that’s totally cool with me. And we can just do it a year at a time like that, and that’s fine."