Patriots

Brady: Patriots offense dictating own terms

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Brady: Patriots offense dictating own terms

Broncos linebacker Joe Mays knew exactly what one of his team's biggest problems was during Sunday night's loss to New England.
There just wasn't much Denver could do about it.
"Everything that happened out there we had seen on film, it was just the speed of the game. We weren't ready for that. We prepared for it, but when we came out on the field it surprised us a little bit," he said in the postgame.
"They were able to run the ball, pass the ball, they definitely were able to run their whole playbook against us. We definitely have to do a better job of stopping these guys on the run and getting pressure on the QB."
The Patriots ran no huddle offense -- whether one play or five -- on every drive until the fourth quarter.
In his Monday morning WEEI interview, Tom Brady confirmed Mays' lamentations.
We were moving pretty quick. I think we were trying to keep the pressure on them," the quarterback said. "I thought we did a good job of that. Its trying to keep them off balance, trying to keep our tempo.
Denver's defensive teetering meant the 31-21 final score featured a mess of impressive Patriots numbers.
New England's 35 first downs (18 rushing, 16 passing, one by penalty) is a new franchise record.
The team's 251 rushing yards, coupled with last week's 247 against Buffalo, mark the first back-to-back 200-plus yard rushing games since 1978.
Sunday's score was the fourth time in five games the Patriots have scored over 30 points.
Dating back to last week against Buffalo, Brady oversaw a stretch of 10 touchdown drives in 15 series.
Looks like the offense has its stuff together.
"It's just been what we've chosen to do the last few weeks," Brady said after the Denver game. "I think that's more of what we're doing as opposed to what they're doing defensively. We're just trying to put a lot of pressure on those guys to get the calls in and line up and play against us.
"We're running the ball against some very advantageous looks and throwing the ball against some advantageous looks, and I think the important part is to be able to do both. You can't just throw all day. You can't run all day. You have to be able to do both. It's been pretty good the last few weeks."
Sunday night Brady threw 31 passes, completing 23 for 223 yards and a touchdown. He also snuck one in over the goal line himself.
The irony is, Peyton Manning had the better statistical night: 31-for-44 for 345 yards, three touchdowns, and a 116.2 rating.
It's just those numbers didn't matter in the end as much as the Patriots' plus-11 minute lead in time of possession.
"He is extremely smart and I think he knows football," Broncos coach John Fox said. "I mean, I think our guy did an outstanding job tonight as well. I mean, Brady is a great players; he's been doing it a long time at a high level, so he's definitely a hard quarterback to defend against."
No matter how much film you study.

Ex-Pats Moss, Law and Seymour among Hall of Fame semifinalists

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Ex-Pats Moss, Law and Seymour among Hall of Fame semifinalists

Former Patriots Randy Moss, Ty Law and Richard Seymour are among 27 semifinalists for the Pro Football Hall of Fame Class of 2018.

In January, selectors will reduce the list to 15 finalists, who will join seniors Robert Brazile and Jerry Kramer and contributor Bobby Beathard on the final ballot. The annual selection meeting will take place Feb.y 3, the day before Super Bowl LII.

Click here for the complete story from NBC's Pro Football Talk.

Patriots cut ties with Cassius Marsh, sign Eric Lee to help front seven

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Patriots cut ties with Cassius Marsh, sign Eric Lee to help front seven

Cassius Marsh was brought to New England to help a depleted defensive end group and play in the kicking game. The Patriots wanted him badly enough that they parted with two draft picks -- a fifth and a seventh -- to acquire him in a trade with the Seahawks just before the start of the season. 

Less than three months later, they've decided to part ways with the 6-foot-4, 245-pounder. 

Marsh played in nine games for the Patriots this season, providing the team with an edge defender and someone with special-teams experience. He blocked a kick in Week 7 against the Falcons that earned him an enthusiastic attaboy from coach Bill Belichick. 

Coming off the edge, Marsh recorded one sack and 13 hurries. Against the run, he was used more sparingly, and he was one of the Patriots on the scene for Marshawn Lynch's 25-yard run in the second quarter on Sunday. He played in just two snaps in Mexico City after missing the previous week's game in Denver due to a shoulder injury. 

Without Marsh the Patriots remain thin at defensive end. In order to help bolster that spot, the corresponding move the Patriots made to fill the open spot on their 53-man roster was to sign defensive lineman Eric Lee off of the Bills practice squad. 

Lee entered the league with the Texans last season as an undrafted rookie out of South Florida. Listed at 6-foot-3, 260 pounds, Lee has bounced on and off of the Bills practice squad this season since being released by the Texans before this season.

The Patriots got a good look at Lee during joint practices last summer with the Texans at The Greenbrier in West Virginia. In the preseason game with the Texans that week, Lee played 40 snaps and according to Pro Football Focus he had two quarterback hurries. The Patriots have a history of snagging players they've practiced against, and with Lee, that trend continues