Patriots

Friday Bag: By all accounts, Brady is well-heeled

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Friday Bag: By all accounts, Brady is well-heeled

I'm going dark meat to start things off. Love all meats here -- other than tofurky, which I'm not positive is a real thing -- but dark meat is the best value on the board. Give me a whole turkey leg (should qualify) and not only am I satiated, but I all of a sudden have something on my plate that few others do. Value! For potatoes, have to go mashed and gravy. My value game plan is already out the window, but I can't go with anything else. This will come back to bite me. Give me the bread stuffing and brussels for my sides. Not even factoring in cost here. When done right, those are my No. 1 and 2. Plenty of cash left. Feeling good. I'll take dinner rolls for the bread because all of those breads listed are just gravy sponges for me. Biscuits aren't $1,500 better than dinner rolls when it comes to absorption. OK. Dessert. Don't have as much cash as I thought, but this is fine. It's fine. I'm not a gotta-have-pumpkin-pie-or-it's-not-Thanksgiving guy. Give me apple and I'm happy. If I do that, I've only got $5,000 left. I'll take banana pudding pie for my final selection and use the leftover $500 for a scoop of Brigham's vanilla ice cream for my apple slice. 

https://twitter.com/jpc19671/status/934090292877316096

Why yes, Jim. There’s my karaoke go-to “Brandy” by Looking Glass.  I also can do a nice rendition of Iggy Pop’s “Candy”, “4th of July Asbury Park (aka, Sandy)” by Bruce Springsteen, “Handy Man” by James Taylor, “Some Kind of Wonderful” by Grand Funk Railroad, “Laid” by James, “Bluer than Blue” by Michael Johnson, “J’aurais Toujours Faim De Toi” by The Police and James McMurtry’s “Choctaw Bingo,” which is the greatest song in American music. IMHO!

If the canned stuff is in front of me, I'm eating it. Not necessarily seeking it out, but I'll never scoff at it. No place for elitism at the Thanksgiving dinner table.

Yes, Dave. Sometimes I just look at the Twitter question and think, “Hmmm. Good question. I don’t think I definitively know the answer to it . . . ” and then just scroll on by. However, in this instance, because of the promise made, I must respond. The answer is: I don’t know. Brady rarely has soft-tissue injuries because that’s everything his training and conditioning is aimed at stopping. I don’t know if this is just soreness or exertion-related or if someone stepped on the thing. Honestly, you’d prefer the latter because then it’s a trauma that would be healing as opposed to the thing being stretched like a banjo string. Either way, it was related to me that it’s not a big deal.

Not a huge concern, Rich. He was back at practice Thursday. Something to keep an eye on moving forward, but nothing to lose sleep over at this point. 

Happy Thanksgiving, Giant Wally. Neither has started practicing so it’s tough to handicap. Mitchell, to me, would be the safer choice if it were one or the other. Danny Amendola’s been brilliant but he’s got a ton on his plate and needs his workload trimmed. Mitchell could help with that (even if they don’t necessarily play the same spot in the offense). And Giardi? It’s eight years this month that he and I have worked together. Long road for two guys who worked at rival weeklies back in 1992 and 1993 (Barnstable Patriots for me; Falmouth Enterprise for him). Love having him on our team. Nobody does the hockey, baseball, football combo better nor does anyone else get in the trenches in locker rooms and press conferences and formulate fact-based opinions and analysis like he does. Big value in talking to players and coaches directly then passing it on to the audience.

If I'm the Patriots, I'd hold out hope that Mitchell can get to the point where he's healthy enough to contribute. He's on the right track, but he's still not practicing so we're in a holding pattern at the moment. The reason I'd go Mitchell over Valentine is that the Patriots are relatively thin at wideout. We're expecting Chris Hogan to come back and be himself eventually, but it looks like he's going to miss another game this weekend. Another injury to that spot and things would look dire there. Though the Patriots run defense could use the kind of boost that Valentine would provide, the Patriots can make up for deficiencies at defensive tackle a little bit easier. 

Absolutely, JT. The simple fact that the Patriots are 10 games into what will be a 17-to-19-game season means that the likelihood someone gets compromised physically is still pretty high. His relevance as a bigger back is presumably coming along with the cold and the wind. The Patriots have been screwing with bad coverage linebackers the past two weeks with Denver and Oakland and every other back is a better pass-catcher than Gillislee. I don’t think he’s been exiled. 

It's probably between Waddle and Jonathan Jones. Waddle has been tremendous in Marcus Cannon's absence, and Jones may have an argument as the team's most consistent corner from Week 1 until now. That says a lot about how Malcolm Butler and Stephon Gilmore have played this year, but Jones' coverage has been sound, and his timing to contest passes has been impeccable. Kyle Van Noy deserves an honorable mention here as well. He's taken on the hybrid end/linebacker role with Dont'a Hightower out and more than held his own. Danny Amendola's volume of production would've been deemed a surprise, but with Julian Edelman out, not sure he qualifies. Always had the skill and trust from Tom Brady to do what he's doing. Just needed good health and opportunity. 

I'm looking on the defensive side. I'm looking at the front-seven in particular. I'm inclined to add to the edge with someone like Khalil Mack, Von Miller or Cameron Jordan -- all of whom are dynamic pass-rushers but would also excel against the run in Bill Belichick and Matt Patricia's defense. They need bodies there. But Aaron Donald -- who plays on the interior -- is just so talented that I wouldn't be able to pass him up. He'd rush the passer. He'd help their run defense. And he'd garner enough attention that it would make the others around him better. That's my choice. 

Just don’t call me late for DINNER!!!! Know what I mean Bob-O, Bobby, Bob-a-loo!!!!!!????? Happy Thanksgiving errrrryone. 

NBC SPORTS BOSTON SCHEDULE

Josh Gordon practices with Patriots but Belichick still reluctant to talk

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NBC Sports Boston Photo

Josh Gordon practices with Patriots but Belichick still reluctant to talk

1:22 - Josh Gordon is now officially a Patriot. Tom E. Curran joins Early Edition with Gary Tanguay and Trenni Kusnierek to give his theory about why Bill Belichick was reluctant to discuss the acquisition of the former Browns wide receiver.

6:10 - Jimmy Butler has reportedly requested a trade and prefers the Knicks, Nets, and Clippers as destinations. Chris Gasper and Kyle Draper talk about if this could have any impact on the Celtics and Kyrie Irving’s future in Boston. 

10:13 - David Price can’t get the job done and the division title celebration will have to wait another night. Giles, Draper, Holley, and Trotta break down David Price’s performance and discuss what the Red Sox playoff rotation should be. 

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NBC SPORTS BOSTON SCHEDULE

Browns were frustrated Josh Gordon was not in shape

Browns were frustrated Josh Gordon was not in shape

Wednesday night on Quick Slants, Albert Breer of Sports Illustrated said the Browns were frustrated that Gordon was not in football shape.

First, Breer mentions Gordon reportedly tweaking his hamstring during a promo shoot before the trade.

"The hamstring issue is more a symptom of him not being reliable," Breer said. "It wasn't like he was in any sort of disrepair when they were dealing him. It was the way he got hurt, which was outside of team activities and the fact that he showed up late the next day."

Then, Breer went on to talk about how the Browns used Gordon a lot in the season opener to prove to the receiver that he wasn't in football shape.

"I think this goes beyond just the substance abuse problem. The Browns had gotten frustrated with him, and it wasn't just the hamstring and what happened last weekend. It was also the fact that he had trouble getting himself into football shape. And I think a lot of people look at him... and by human standards, he's in great shape -- not the same thing as being in football shape. And in that first game, you might notice that they put him out there for I think 69 snaps, right? Hue Jackson said before the game, 'We didn't intend to start him,' but they did intend to play him a lot and then they said they only started him because of personnel groupings.

"My understanding is part of the reason they put him out there for that long was to show him, 'Hey, look - you may think you're in great shape, but being in football shape is something different.' And so if you watch the game, he wore down a little bit at the end and that's something they had experienced in practice, and so that's something to watch for."

"And the big question of course, and this is central to what the Patriots believe in... does he really love football that much? And that's at the center of the Patriots program when it comes to who they're going to acquire."

All signs point to Gordon getting to prove himself sooner rather than later with the Patriots.

NBC SPORTS BOSTON SCHEDULE