Patriots

Patriots-Titans practice report: Flowers joins Gillislee on sideline

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Patriots-Titans practice report: Flowers joins Gillislee on sideline

FOXBORO -- When the Patriots beat up on the Bills at Gillette Stadium at the end of the regular season, they got a career day out of Marquis Flowers. Deployed to combat the athleticism of Bills quarterback Tyrod Taylor, often on the second level as a spy, Flowers racked up 2.5 sacks and was one of the most productive players on the field. 

On Wednesday, as the Patriots practiced to prepare for another athletic quarterback in the Divisional Round, Flowers was out sick. He and Mike Gillislee (knee) were the only two Patriots on the 53-man roster who did not participate in the session. 

The Patriots are caught in an interesting predicament defensively when it comes to their plan for the Titans. They could use their speed, as they did against the Bills, to corral Marcus Mariota. They could also lean heavily on their base personnel -- perhaps with David Harris and Elandon Roberts on the field -- in order defend against the power running of Titans back Derrick Henry. They could mix and match with both depending on the situation.

Flowers may not be relied upon as much in either scenario if Kyle Van Noy is healthy and ready for a full workload as he deals with a calf injury. But Flowers' status in Thursday's practice -- the final workout for the Patriots before Saturday's game -- bears watching as he's a versatile piece who provides depth defensively and on special teams.

Here's Wednesday's full practice participation/injury report for Saturday's Patriots-Titans game:

NEW ENGLAND PATRIOTS

DID NOT PARTICIPATE
LB Marquis Flowers (illness)
RB Mike Gillislee (knee)

LIMITED PARTICIPATION
DL Alan Branch (knee)
RB Rex Burkhead (knee)
WR Chris Hogan (shoulder)
DL Eric Lee (ankle)
LB Kyle Van Noy (calf)
RB James White (ankle)

TENNESSEE TITANS

DID NOT PARTICIPATE
RB DeMarco Murray (knee)
LB Brian Orakpo (not injury related)
G Quinton Spain

LIMITED PARTICIPATION
CB Logan Ryan (ankle)

BEST OF BST PODCAST: Gisele wants Tom Brady to Retire?

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BEST OF BST PODCAST: Gisele wants Tom Brady to Retire?

0:41 - Jay Feely, former college teammate of Tom Brady at Michigan, says that Gisele asked him to convince Brady to retire. Tom Curran, Lou Merloni, and Kayce Smith discuss how long Brady will play for and if Gisele will have a say when he retires.

6:08 - Chris Mannix joins BST to talk about the team meeting that the Cavaliers players held about Kevin Love, where Isaiah Thomas was reportedly one of the players that spoke up.

11:47 - Phil Perry gives his Patriots grades for each position in the AFC Championship victory over the Jaguars.

16:47 - Tom Curran and Michael Holley discuss if the Eagles were the worst matchup for the Patriots to play in the Super Bowl.

QUICK SLANTS THE PODCAST: How much better are the Eagles than the Jaguars? What are the biggest threats to Patriots?

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QUICK SLANTS THE PODCAST: How much better are the Eagles than the Jaguars? What are the biggest threats to Patriots?

Jerod Mayo joins Phil Perry and Tom E. Curran to discuss the Patriots-Eagles Superbowl matchup

(2:00) are Patriots fans becoming numb to their team going to the Super Bowl?

(8:00) Jerod Mayo joins Curran and Perry to discuss whether the excitement of going to the Super Bowl ever changes for players.

(11:00) Why was Blake Bortles and the Jaguars able to have success against the Patriots defense?

(20:00) Can the Eagles defense build off of what the Jaguars did to slow down the Patriots?

(24:00) Jerod Mayo on why the Patriots running backs were not as effective against the Jaguars.

(29:00) How much better are the Eagles than the Jaguars?

(30:00) How hard is it for opposing teams to keep their composure against the Patriots?

LISTEN HERE: Quick Slants the Podcast