Moss: I don't want to leave New England


Moss: I don't want to leave New England

By Art Martone

Randy Moss admitted it might not have been appropriate for him to raise the issue of his contract after the Patriots' impressive Opening Day win over the Bengals Sunday, but said was something he "wanted to get off my chest" as he reiterated his desire to stay in New England.

"I think that the timing could have been bad," Moss told Hannah Storm Tuesday in an interview on ESPN's SportsCenter, "but it was actually my first time speaking to the media this year and I wanted to get off my chest instead of waiting until Week 12, Week 13, on down the road until it really could become a distraction to our team and what we're trying to accomplish. So it was just something I wanted to do. Maybe it was bad timing, but . . . I cleared my mind in order to feel good about myself.

"I think when it comes to the business side of football, I hope that my coaches and teammates didn't take it as disrespectful . . . and understood where I was coming from. But like I said, that was the first and last time you're going to hear me talking about my contract."

Moss confirmed that he spoke to coach Bill Belichick on Monday about his comments.

"He just told me I had to watch what I do and what I say," Moss said. "And I told him, point-blank, 'Yes, sir. I got you.' Simple as that."

One of Moss' main points Sunday was how much he wanted to remain with the Patriots, and he repeated that sentiment several times Tuesday.

"Hopefully, my teammates and coaches like me being a part of the New England Patriots team. Because I know I do," said Moss, who later added, "let me say this again: I do not want to leave New England. Because I love what they do here. I love Coach Belichick, I love the team, I love the coaching staff, and I love playing here on Sundays."

When asked why he felt the Patriots hadn't offered him a contract extension, he answered: "This is a business, Hannah, so I don't really know why there hasn't been any discussion. The only thing I'm doing is taking it in stride, day to day, and hopefully at the end of the season I'll give this organization a reason to keep me. If not, hopefully I'll give some other organization a reason to bring me in."

But he thinks he still has much to offer the Patriots, or any potential employer, in the seasons to come.

"I take my job seriously," he said. "I have a lot of pride in what I do. I think any coach or any owner would want a guy like me on their team. I mean, I take everything to heart. I take the wins in stride and . . . losing, I take that in stride, also. I love playing football. And all the extracurricular activity that comes with football, off the field, I really don't care too much about. But being on the football field, between those white lines, is something I love to do . . ."

Moss also said Tom Brady's new contract didn't spur him to make his comments Sunday.

"It's well-deserved. I'm a big fan of Tom Brady's," Moss said of Brady's new deal. "I got a lot of respect for Tom and what he brings to the team each day . . . He's worked hard to be where he is . . . But it didn't prompt me to come out and say what I did Sunday."

Art Martone can be reached at

Julio Jones presents Johnson Bademosi opportunity to prove he's not niche player

Julio Jones presents Johnson Bademosi opportunity to prove he's not niche player

None of us thought Johnson Bademosi would be starting this past Sunday at MetLife Stadium against the Jets because -- well -- that’s not what we perceive the 27-year-old to be. He’s a special teamer. It’s how he’s made his mark in the NFL dating back to 2012 with Cleveland. So why would that change in mid-October for a team he’s only been with for six weeks? Because Bademosi is -- and has always been -- intent on proving he’s more than a niche player.

“I see myself as a football player,” he said, “and whatever position they put me in, I’m going to try to be the best because that’s how I operate and who I am as a person. Whether that’s as a cornerback, on special teams, if they ask me to play wildcat quarterback. Whatever…”


Bill Belichick and his staff asked for Bademosi to go on the field and not come off. He played 73 defensive snaps in addition to his usual core four special teams duties. 

“I felt like I played a whole game,” Bademosi joked, before saying, “I love playing football so I’m going to go out there and empty myself.”

He did just that, getting targeted only two times in the 24-17 win over the Jets. It was hoped that Bademosi would return to his normal specialist role, but with Stephon Gilmore still out with a concussion, it now seems more and more likely that the sixth year pro will have to be an ironman again Sunday night in primetime against the Falcons. Historically, the Pats have defended bigger receivers. That means Bademosi may be responsible for one of the most dangerous players in the league, Julio Jones.

“He’s an amazing player," he said. “We all know what he’s capable of. As a defense, we have to be prepared for him.”

The Pats were on Super Bowl Sunday and Jones still made a couple of ridiculous plays with either Logan Ryan or Eric Rowe in coverage with safety help over the top.

“He’s fast. He’s physical. He can jump. He can run. He’s smart. He’s everything you want in a wide receiver,” said Bademosi without blinking an eye. That’s the kind of confidence you want from a player at that position and facing this type of challenge. 

“You gotta believe in yourself,” he said “ I’m confident in my abilities. I work hard and trust my preparation.”

Being an elite athlete certainly helps. Bademosi was a scholarship football player at Stanford -- “some guy named Jim Harbaugh called” -- before ending up in the NFL. But it’s Bademosi’s willingness to go all in in the film room that impressed safety Devin McCourty. 

“…I think, honestly, the most work he did was probably with just himself jumping into the film, watching more stuff to exactly see,” said McCourty Thursday. “You know, when you’re a backup more, you’re kind of trying to see everything because you don’t know what role you might be thrust upon once you’re in the game. But, I think once he knew he was starting, it was kind of like, ‘Alright, let me focus in on this.’ I thought he did an awesome job of just being ready and competing.”

Bademosi will have to compete his ass off Sunday night, even against what has been to this point a physically compromised Jones. Based on what he did several days ago, there’s no reason to believe the Pats cornerback won’t bring everything he has, trying to prove again that he’s more than just a special teams whiz.