Patriots

Tom Brady has a message for Patriots fans about Rob Gronkowski's possible return

Tom Brady has a message for Patriots fans about Rob Gronkowski's possible return

Tom Brady has a very large platform to pitch Rob Gronkowski on an NFL comeback.

But the New England Patriots quarterback would rather not make that pitch publicly.

In an interview Monday on WEEI's "The Greg Hill Show," Brady said he's not pushing for Gronkowski to return to the Patriots following his retirement in March.

"I love that guy. I am so happy he's enjoying his time," Brady said, via WEEI.com. "I'm happy that he's enjoying life. He seems to be doing a lot of great things. He knows how I feel about him and I want what is best for him. He’s the only person that can make those decisions. I don't lobby for those things."

Gronk has been active in retirement, partnering with a company that sells CBD-based pain relief medications and this past week joining FOX as an NFL analyst. The 30-year-old hasn't completely ruled out an NFL return, though, and stayed in shape this past offseason by working out at least once with his former QB.

Brady is aware of all the Gronk speculation, but believes Patriots fans should appreciate what the tight end did in New England rather than fret over if he's coming back.

"He has given actually a hell of a lot to our team already over the course of a long period of time," Brady added, "and I think people should be very appreciative for what he’s brought to the team and what he’s brought to the region.

"I thik he's a very special guy. He's just in a different phase of his life."

If Gronkowski is interested in returning at some point, Brady likely will be among the first to reach out to him. But the Patriots QB seems to support whatever path his former tight end chooses.

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Patriots sign former Vikings defensive lineman to practice squad

Patriots sign former Vikings defensive lineman to practice squad

The New England Patriots are getting busy with practice squad transactions this week.

The Patriots announced Thursday they have signed defensive lineman Tashawn Bower to their practice squad.

Bower signed with the Vikings in 2017 as an undrafted free agent out of LSU and spent the last three seasons in Minnesota.

He recorded one sack over a total of seven games for the Vikings over the 2017 and 2018 seasons but was placed on Minnesota's non-football injury list in July 2019 with a torn Achilles.

The Vikings waived Bower on October 15, and the 24-year-old was a free agent until Thursday.

The Celtics now have nine players on their practice squad after adding wide receiver Quincy Adeboyejo to the group Wednesday.

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Patriots will play Dak Prescott amid best stretch of Cowboys QB's career

Patriots will play Dak Prescott amid best stretch of Cowboys QB's career

Dallas Cowboys quarterback Dak Prescott just played the best statistical game of his career, and that's not great for the New England Patriots, who host the NFC East leaders at Gillette Stadium in Sunday's Week 12 matchup.

Prescott completed 29 of 46 pass attempts for 444 yards with three touchdowns and zero interceptions in a 35-27 win over the Detroit Lions. The fourth-year QB has averaged 366 yards per game with a total of nine touchdowns and two interceptions over the last three games. He's also completing 67.7 percent of his passes in 2019 and his 3,221 passing yards lead the league.

Prescott's impressive play is larger than a 4-game sample, though. Here are his stats over the last 16 games dating back to last season:

--69.3% comp pct
--104.8 passer rating 
--4,968 yards
--37 total TD
--12 INT
--8.5 YPA  
--11-5 W/L record

Patriots head coach Bill Belichick gave a glowing overview of Prescott's skill set Wednesday.

"Well we haven’t played him, so this is the first time we’ve played him. But right now, yeah, he’s super impressive," Belichick told reporters. "The way he’s going, might be more than that. Might hit six (thousand yards), I don’t know. This guy can throw the ball, he’s very accurate, he’s got great poise in the pocket, stands in there. He can extend plays and run if he has to, but he doesn’t do much of that unless he really needs to. He has great patience and poise, discipline in the pocket, gets his eyes down field. He’s a very good intermediate-to-deep ball-thrower.

"He’s got good weapons, but he’s been super impressive. Just, great, great quarterback – sideline throws, inside throws, in-cuts, posts, over routes, flag routes, you name it. Possession passes on third down, best third down team in the league, best passing team in the league, most big plays in the league – I mean, I don’t know where you want to start, they do it all. And, he does it all. He runs options, he runs read zones, keeps the ball in critical situations, tough guy to tackle, makes tough yards when he needs them, so he’s really good."

The Cowboys chose to give star running back Ezekiel Elliott a contract extension before the season and still haven't come to terms with Prescott. Elliott is a tremendous player, but the first 10 games have shown Dallas will only be as successful as Prescott. He is the Cowboys' most important player, and the Patriots' No. 1 ranked pass defense needs to slow him down or Dallas will have a good chance of leaving Gillette Stadium with a much-needed win.

Pats' D must beat Prescott in this area of the field>>>

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