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New England Patriots links 1/11/18 - Pass-catching RBs may have field day vs. Titans

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Daily news and links for Thursday

New England Patriots v Miami Dolphins Photo by Chris Trotman/Getty Images

TEAM TALK

LOCAL LINKS

  • Karen Guregian believes the pass-catching RBs could run wild against the Titans; Football Outsiders ranked them dead last in coverage against running backs this year.
  • Doug Kyed says that thanks to a monster second half of the season, Dion Lewis has entered conversations about the best running back in the NFL.
  • CBS Boston reports the Patriots should get a boost on both sides of the ball this weekend, with the return of Rex Burkhead and Alan Branch.
  • Mike Giardi notes Rob Gronkowski is sticking with the “ignore the noise” mantra and says that report is only ‘going to bond us together.’
  • Phil Perry cautions Titans’ Jurrell Casey, a monster in the middle, could provide the kind of pressure that will spell trouble if he can get to Tom Brady.
  • Jeff Howe remembers how earlier this season, Deatrich Wise and Adam Butler proclaimed they would dismiss the rookie wall, and now they’re both excited to make their postseason debut together.
  • Adam Kurkjian notes the Patriots’ wariness of Marcus Mariota’s elusiveness.
  • Kevin Duffy notes Duron Harmon says the Patriots must fix ‘mistakes’ they’ve had against mobile quarterbacks.
  • Jeff Howe looks at key head-to-head matchups ahead of the game: Patriots O-line vs. Titans D-line. “If the line affords Brady three seconds to dissect the defense on every pass, he’ll breeze through the Titans secondary.”
  • Jeff Howe Patriots Notebook: Healthy Alan Branch ready, willing able to help out the defense.
  • Karen Guregian, Adam Kurkjian Patriots-Titans Notes: Logan Ryan bringing inside knowledge into battle vs. Tom Brady.
  • Mike D’Abate (FullPressCoverage) Behind Enemy Lines: FPC Titans’ Dean Williams talks Patriots.
  • Phil Perry Patriots-Titans practice report: Marquis Flowers (illness) joins Mike Gillislee (knee) on sideline.
  • Ryan Hannable sees things trending in the wrong direction for Mike Gillislee to play Saturday.
  • Ryan Hannable reminds us, in case we forgot, the Patriots are entering the postseason not playing their best.
  • Nick O’Malley points out the Patriots are pretty much unstoppable in the AFC as the No. 1 seed under Bill Belichick (except that one time)...
  • DJ Bean takes a look at the Patriots’ divisional round games under Bill Belichick. You’ll notice the classics are few and far in between as time goes on.
  • Phil Perry talks about how the Patriots’ postseason newbies can thank the team’s offseason approach for how they got there.
  • Rich Thompson mentions David Andrews friendship with Titans’ center Ben Jones.
  • Matt Chatham (BlogTalkRadio) Real Thing Patriots Podcast. Divisional Matchup Preview: Titans under the microscope. (1 hour, 5 min.) /Always a great listen.
  • Alex Reimer finds that the effects of Malcolm Butler’s Super Bowl-winning interception are still being felt in Seattle three years later.
  • Kevin Dillon brings up 20 things you might not remember about New England’s 59-0 win over Tennessee in 2009.
  • Steve Buckley isn’t too thrilled about the Patriots’ stranglehold on Boston talk, uses it to bring up past talk-worthy Pats scandals for comparison.
  • Eric Wilbur is late picking up on Bill Belichick’s “intention” to “definitely” be back with the Patriots next season “absolutely,” likens this statement to New Year’s resolutions, and determines ‘nothing Belichick said Monday assures that he will still be here in 2018’.

NATIONAL NEWS

  • Michael David Smith (ProFootballTalk) Tom Brady, Marcus Mariota have biggest age gap between playoff starting QBs.
  • Jared Dubin (CBS Sports) AFC Divisional Playoffs 2018: Patriots offense too much for Titans to handle.
  • Michael David Smith (ProFootballTalk) Bill Belichick to coach NFL record 37th postseason game.
  • Teresa M. Walker (AP) Dick LeBeau, Bill Belichick meet in rare playoff battle.
  • Jenny Vrentas (SI) Why does Bill Belichick use left-footed punters?
  • Andy Benoit (SI) From Brees to Brady, pocket passers rule the playoffs.
  • Charles P. Pierce (SI) What can and what cannot beat the Patriots.
  • Albert Breer (SI) Game Plan: Atlanta Falcons turn to ‘Plan D’ to return to the thick of the NFC postseason; More.
  • Gallery (NFL.com) Mind-boggling stats: Divisional Round.
  • Gregg Rosenthal (NFL.com) QB Index, Divisional Round: Trustworthiness rankings. Brady no. 2 behind Roethlisberger? yeah, right.
  • Brad Gagnon (Bleacher Report) Under-the-radar players who could be difference-makers in the divisional round. Patriots: Duron Harmon.
  • Will Brinson (CBS Sports) 2018 NFL playoff odds, picks: QB experience a hidden factor in Divisional Round.
  • John Breech (CBS Sports) Super Bowl LII: Falcons-Patriots tops our rankings of best potential matchups.
  • Michael David Smith (ProFootballTalk) Gallup poll shows football overwhelmingly Americans’ favorite sport.
  • Andrew Bucholtz (Awful Announcing) Survey suggests NFL’s never-ending love for UK games may be misguided, as locals find American football ‘boring’.
  • Darin Gantt (ProFootballTalk) Browns get rid of Ryan Grigson as part of personnel moves. #CurseOfDeflategate.
  • Brian Baldinger (NFL.com) Top 10 individual effort plays of 2017. (8.51 min. video)
  • Matt Yoder (Awful Announcing) 5 possible replacements for Jon Gruden at ESPN and Monday Night Football.

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