Patriots

CB/special teamer Bademosi joins Texans

CB/special teamer Bademosi joins Texans

It's another free-agent loss for the Patriots as cornerback and key special teams player Johnson Bademosi has agreed to a two-year, $6.25 contract with the Houston Texans, ESPN's Adam Schefter reports.

Bademosi, who turns 28 in August, saw plenty of time in the secondary in the Super Bowl loss to the Eagles with the benching of Malcolm Butler. He joined the Patriots in a trade from the Detroit Lions on Sept. 2, 2017, in exchange for a 2019 sixth-round draft pick.

Bademosi joins left tackle Nate Solder (Giants), cornerback Malcolm Butler (Titans), running back Dion Lewis (Titans) and wide receiver Danny Amendola (Dolphins) as recent free-agent departures from New England. 

Patriots sitting fourth on latest Super Bowl 53 odds

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Patriots sitting fourth on latest Super Bowl 53 odds

The New England Patriots (7-3) are attempting to make their third straight Super Bowl appearance this season and win their third Vince Lombardi Trophy in five years. However, their betting futures have dropped a bit since losing to the Tennessee Titans 34-10 last week.

That rout on the road at Nashville gave oddsmakers a lot to think about, as New England fell to 2-3 away from home, with all three losses decided by double digits. The Patriots are now sitting at +650 (wager $100 to win $650) on the Super Bowl 53 odds at sportsbooks monitored by OddsShark.com, behind the favored Los Angeles Rams (+325), New Orleans Saints (+400) and Kansas City Chiefs (+500).

When assessing the chances of the top contenders on the betting board to win the Super Bowl this season, home-field advantage is obviously a key factor. In the AFC, home field seems to be more important than in the NFC, where playing in warm weather or a dome likely will not affect the teams as much. But for Kansas City or New England, serving as a playoff host could be critical to each team's chances of advancing to the AFC Championship Game.

The Patriots trail the Chiefs (9-1) by two games right now for the conference's No. 1 seed and home field throughout the postseason heading into their bye week, but they do hold a tiebreaker based on their head-to-head victory in Week 6.

New England also has a large road showdown with the Pittsburgh Steelers (6-2-1) looming in Week 15, which could knock the defending AFC champions out of the top two seeds altogether with a loss.

The Steelers have become even stronger as a team without disgruntled running back Le'Veon Bell, who will not be playing at all this year after failing to report on Tuesday. Bell will get even more rest before becoming an unrestricted free agent in the offseason while his former team hopes to finally get past the Patriots and back to the Super Bowl.

Pittsburgh already holds the NFL record for Super Bowl wins with six and is listed at +1000 to earn a seventh in February. The Steelers are 6-point road favorites on the NFL Week 11 odds against the Jacksonville Jaguars on Sunday afternoon. Kansas City is a 3.5-point road underdog against the Los Angeles Rams on Monday night.

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Devin and Jason McCourty amused by latest rush to bury Tom Brady

Devin and Jason McCourty amused by latest rush to bury Tom Brady

Jason McCourty sees some in the media attempting this week to stick a fork between the shoulders of Tom Brady.

He wonders where the “Brady’s done!” crew was after Sunday Night Football wins over the Packers and Chiefs.

“Last week, we beat the Packers and put up 30-some points and no one questions him,” McCourty said earlier this week on Quick Slants. “We play the Kansas City Chiefs and as a defense, we suck and we give up a lot of points and Tom just keeps answering. He has the last drive to go down and put us up and the game’s over and it’s just, ‘There’s Tom Brady being Tom Brady.’

“Then as soon as there’s a bad game, it’s like, ‘Well, I guess Tom’s on a downward spiral . . . ’ – wait, two weeks ago, he was still the greatest?

“For me, that just comes with the territory of reaching that level of greatness,” McCourty added. “As soon as there’s a tad bit off everybody goes down in the dumps.”

Caveats are attached to Brady’s good games -- “Sure, he went 24-for-35 for 340 against the Chiefs and dropped a pearl into Gronk’s hands from deep to set up the win, but the Chiefs defense sucks!” -- while the fine print like injuries or protection is ignored when he plays average.

Why’s that? Devin McCourty thinks it’s the rush to be the first to have planted the “Brady’s Done” flag.

“Everyone wants to call that out,” said Devin. “Everyone wants to be the smart person who said ‘I knew it was the end.’ In ’14, how many people said that?”

Coming off Sunday’s 34-10 loss in Tennessee that dropped the Patriots to 7-3, both McCourty’s said there’s no need for overreaction.

“It doesn’t help,” said Devin.

“For us as players, what is our overreaction?” Jason asked. “What are we gonna do, go to management and say, ‘Get me out of here and replace me with somebody better?’ For us to overreact is pointless.

“We’ll focus on what we messed up and what we can improve on,” Jason added. “Once you form that brotherhood and that family mentality you want to fix things with the guys that are in your locker room. So you try to fix it so that the team and management doesn’t feel like it has to go outside to fix any problems.”

Devin understands the outside reaction that comes after a bad performance.

“When you watch, you can say, ‘They have this problem, that problem,’ but you’re not a part of fixing that,” he said. “You just sit back and if they don’t fix it you boo, if they do fix it, you cheer. We’re all like that. When I watch basketball, I’ll have strong opinions and say what they need to do and it’s the same way.
“What I’ve learned in this league is you have to keep that sense of urgency,” said Devin. “There’s no time to panic but there is a time to have a sense of urgency to get better and that’s how you have good seasons. We’re at a crucial point. But with the sense of urgency you allow yourself a chance. In

’15 we went 10-0 and everything was great, we were the best team and then we (go 2-4 down the stretch) and you’re like, ‘I don’t know what happened, I thought we were great.’ It’s all about keeping a sense of urgency.”

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