Mitchell on pregame scuffle: 'I did what I thought was best'

Mitchell on pregame scuffle: 'I did what I thought was best'

FOXBORO -- Patriots receiver Malcolm Mitchell doesn't want to find himself going toe-to-toe with opponents during pregame warmups on a regular basis, but on Sunday he reacted quickly when he saw Bills safety Robert Blanton take an unexpected shot at quarterback Jacoby Brissett.

BILLS 16, PATRIOTS 0: Perry: First impressions from the game | Curran: Best and worst | Bills: Patriots 'disrespect' sparked pregame scuffle | Brown: It was a 'complete debacle' | Notes: First time shut out at home in 23 years |

As the two Patriots rookies ran back toward their team's side of the field after a quick jog down the home team's sideline, they passed by Bills players who took exception to just how close the pair was getting to one of their defensive back drills. Blanton, who says he warned Brissett and Mitchell when they passed the Bills drill earlier, threw his shoulder into the third-round pick from North Carolina State. 

Immediately after Blanton's bump, Mitchell shoved the veteran defensive back in retaliation. That sparked a quick scuffle involving Bills safety Aaron Williams and multiple Patriots coaches before all involved cooled off.

Mitchell said that his coaches did not speak to him about the incident afterwards, and he did not apologize for defending his teammate. 

"At the time, I did what I thought was best," Mitchell said. "Am I right or wrong? I don't know. I just did what I thought was best at that particular time."

Mitchell explained that if he felt it would hurt the team to do what he did again, he wouldn't. If that were the case on another day, maybe he would walk away. 

Ideally, he wouldn't be put in position to make that decision a second time. 

"Let's just hope we're not in that situation again," he said.

When asked about the incident, tight end Martellus Bennett -- a 6-foot-7, 275-pound veteran -- had a slightly different reaction.

"I wasn't out there," he said. "It would've been different if I was out there. I don't let that [expletive] happen."

Ex-Patriots TE Martellus Bennett announces retirement

Ex-Patriots TE Martellus Bennett announces retirement

Martellus Bennett is moving on from the game of football.

The former Patriots tight end announced his retirement Friday night on Twitter, stating he is shifting his focus to his multimedia production company, The Imagination Agency.

Bennett, 31, had 55 receptions for 701 yards and seven touchdowns in 16 games during the 2016 season with New England. After rejoining the Patriots in 2017, Bennett battled hamstring and shoulder injuries but did play in two games, catching six passes for 53 yards.

Bennett also played with the Cowboys, Giants, Bears, and Packers over the course of his 10-year career.


Arrest made in burglary at Rob Gronkowski's house

Arrest made in burglary at Rob Gronkowski's house

An arrest has been made in the Super Bowl week burglary at Rob Gronkowski's house.

Foxboro police announced Friday they have arrested 31-year-old Anthony Almeida, who has been charged with breaking and entering, receiving stolen property and malicious destruction of property.

The police also said they are searching for two other suspects, 26-year-old Shayne Denn and 28-year-old Eric Tyrrell.

Items taken from Gronkowski's house in the burglary included an Apple Watch, Rolex, and rare coins from the 1800s. Fortunately, those items have been recovered and Gronk will be getting them back. Police are still searching for the guns that were stolen from the house.