Patriots

Mohamed Sanu will be very dependable guy for Tom Brady, Patriots

Mohamed Sanu will be very dependable guy for Tom Brady, Patriots

The New England Patriots acquired Mohamed Sanu from the Atlanta Falcons Tuesday, and he's going to fit right in.

D. Orlando Ledbetter of the Atlanta Journal-Constitution joined Tom Curran's Patriots Talk Podcast to discuss Sanu's tenure in Atlanta. The message was clear from Ledbetter -- Sanu is a very dependable receiver. 

"They're getting a wide receiver who is very productive on third downs," Ledbetter told Curran. "I understand they offered a fourth, and then a third and they finally came back and gave them a two. But, he's a guy that has been able to get open, play some gadget plays for the Falcons, throw the ball on some wild cat type stuff, and a guy who has been very dependable since the Falcons signed him in free agency in 2016."

Although Sanu isn't known for racking up the yards, he's a player Brady can turn to in third down situations.

"I think he'll be a dependable guy. I don't think he can run those crossers like Edelman or that fast of them, but he definitely can get down into the soft spots of the zone and he's going to be on the third or fourth cornerback to get some space and get open. Also a big-bodied guy that can turn around and block the defender from the ball with very good, strong hands. Not a lot after the catch running, but he does run strong with it for a couple yards. He's a guy that can get it and turn it up the field and get you a couple extra yards."

In 110 career games, Sanu has 377 receptions for 4,300 yards and 25 touchdowns. His talent has been overshadowed by Julio Jones in Atlanta, but through seven games with the Falcons this season, he has 33 receptions for 313 yards and one touch down. 

He'll be an asset to Tom Brady's offense, and will provide a sense of stability in New England's offensive lineup.

Click here to download the new MyTeams App by NBC Sports! Receive comprehensive coverage of your teams and stream the Celtics easily on your device.

Cowboys' Leighton Vander Esch out vs. Patriots with neck issue

Cowboys' Leighton Vander Esch out vs. Patriots with neck issue

The Dallas Cowboys will be without one of their best defensive players when they take on the New England Patriots on Sunday.

Linebacker Leighton Vander Esch will miss the Week 12 matchup with a neck issue, according to Michael Gehlken of the Dallas Morning News.

Vander Esch has already missed one game this season due to a neck injury. The Boise State product had said he's "been looking forward [to facing Tom Brady] his whole life," but Dallas' 2018 first-round draft pick will have to wait a bit longer for the opportunity.

In nine games this year, Vander Esch has tallied 70 tackles, three passes defensed, a forced fumble and half of a sack.

Click here to download the new MyTeams App by NBC Sports! Receive comprehensive coverage of your teams and stream the Celtics easily on your device.

Sources: Patriots not interested in bringing back Antonio Brown

Sources: Patriots not interested in bringing back Antonio Brown

Once bitten, twice shy.

Two sources with knowledge of the Patriots thinking scoffed at the idea Antonio Brown would rejoin the Patriots this season.

When one source was asked if there was a chance the wideout – who was with the Patriots for less than two tumultuous weeks in September – might have a chance at rejoining the team, this was the two-word response.

“What’s changed?”

I mentioned Brown’s social media apology to owner Robert Kraft earlier in the week and his meeting last week with the NFL as possibly changing the equation.

I was told that it does not.

At issue aren’t hurt feelings that Brown couldn’t fix with a few keystrokes. It’s the wariness of something else cropping up down the road.

When the Patriots signed Brown, there was no advance notice from Brown’s agent Drew Rosenhaus that Brown was on the cusp of being slapped with a lawsuit by his former trainer Britney Taylor even though the legal wrangling between Brown and Taylor’s attorneys had been going on for months.

And while it was subsequently reported Rosenhaus couldn’t break a confidentiality agreement Brown supposedly had in place, the fact that the Patriots entered into the Brown experience not knowing at all that that bombshell was waiting to explode makes them unwilling to go down the same road again.

Florio: If Patriots don’t sign Antonio Brown, "somebody else will">>>

Click here to download the new MyTeams App by NBC Sports! Receive comprehensive coverage of your teams and stream the Celtics easily on your device.