Super Bowl Notes: Ducking, weaving from Roger Goodell on relationship with Patriots

Super Bowl Notes: Ducking, weaving from Roger Goodell on relationship with Patriots

HOUSTON — Roger Goodell has avoided Boston, but he heard from the Boston media early and often during his annual Super Bowl press conference. 

The third question that Goodell was asked came from The Boston Globe’s Ben Volin, who asked if he agreed with Robert Kraft’s recent comments that the NFL had received bad information during the Deflategate saga, which led to the whole scandal being overblown.

“No,” Goodell said. “We had a violation. We went through a process. We applied the diclipline in accordance with our process. It was litigated, as you know, expensively, and validated by the Second Circuit Court of Appeals. 

“So we’re moving on from that. It’s part of our history, but it’s something that we’re comfortable with the process, with the decision, and as I said, we’re focusing on the game now,” (see full story).

- CSNNE.com

Falcons: Jones '100 percent rolling' into Super Bowl
HOUSTON — The Atlanta Falcons say All-Pro receiver Julio Jones is not slowed at all by a sprained toe.

Even though Jones was listed as limited on Wednesday's Super Bowl practice report, coach Dan Quinn said "it would take an awful lot, an act of nature, for him not to be 100 percent rolling on Sunday."

Jones was wearing neon yellow cleats as he took part in a 1-hour, 24-minute practice at Rice University. He sprinted and cut without any apparent problems, never limping on an 80-degree afternoon.

Center Alex Mack (fibula) was the only other Atlanta player on the injury report. He was listed as limited but also got in significant practice time, leaving little doubt that both players will start in the Super Bowl against the New England Patriots (see full story).

- The Associated Press

Patriots: Brady talks relationship with Kraft
HOUSTON — Tom Brady and Robert Kraft's relationship has come a long was since the rookie quarterback told the Patriots owner that drafting him in the sixth round was the best decision the franchise has ever made. 

During a week when Brady's relationship with his parents has come into the spotlight, Brady called Kraft like "a second father" to him during his career on Tuesday.

"I am a long way from home," Brady said, citing his California roots, "and when you are all the way across the country and don’t have any family . . . We have been through a lot of ups and downs together and through a lot of challenging moments that have brought us closer together.

"He has been a second father to me in a lot of ways and given me a lot of advice over the years about a lot of things that only someone like he could speak to and relate to. Whether it has been family situations or friendship situations, career advice, it has all mattered to me. He knows how I feel about him. It means a lot to him for us to get to this point and he works his butt off to get us here. I know how disappointed he is when we lose this game -- he lets me know it,” (see full story).

- CSNNE.com

Patriots: Can anyone slow down Jones?
HOUSTON — Julio Jones is a bad man, an absolute terror that has caused many defensive coordinators and cornerbacks to toss and turn in their king-size beds wondering, "How in the hell do we cover this guy?"

Taylor Gabriel, a teammate of Jones, has an idea.

“You would think you have to triple, quadruple team him,” he said at the Falcons media availability Wednesday (see full story).

- CSNNE.com

Ominous injury news for Alshon Jeffery

Ominous injury news for Alshon Jeffery

Updated: 4:20 p.m.

The Eagles’ wide receiving corps, already in shambles, is now without Alshon Jeffery, who reportedly suffered a season-ending injury in the win over the Giants Monday night.

The oft-injured Jeffery was carted off the field after suffering a non-contact injury in the ankle or Achilles area early in the second quarter.

Head coach Doug Pederson declined to specify exactly what the injury is at his day-after presser, but he did say it’s “more significant” than a week-to-week injury. At this point in the season, it's no surprise that this is a season-ending injury for the 29-year-old Jeffery.

Pederson said he was waiting for more test results later Monday before saying anything more definitive, but it didn't sound good.

He did allow that, “We have to do a course of action, a plan, with him here pretty soon probably,” which presumably means placing Jeffery on Injured Reserve and figuring out how to replace him.

Jeffery's season ends after he played just 10 games. He finished with 43 catches for 490 yards and 4 touchdowns. 

Complicating matters is the continued absence of Nelson Agholor, the Eagles’ other starting wide receiver. He missed the Giants game with a knee injury he suffered in the Dolphins game a week ago, and Pederson said there’s no guarantee he’ll be ready to play against the Redskins.

“That one’s still up in the air,” he said. “We’ve just got to continue to work through his injury and where he’s at and continue to have conversations with him and see where he is prior to this week.”

With Jeffery out and Agholor’s status unknown, the Eagles have just two healthy wide receivers — J.J. Arcega Whiteside and Greg Ward, who have 19 combined career catches. Tight end Josh Perkins, who can also play in the slot, has 13 career receptions.

Things got so bad Sunday the Eagles were preparing backup quarterback Josh McCown to play wide receiver when Arega-Whiteside left the game. McCown played some receiver with the Lions in 2006. He’s now 40.

Most likely, the Eagles will add one and perhaps two wide receivers this week. Marken Michel, Marcus Green and Robert Davis are on the practice squad, and Jordan Matthews is always on Howie Roseman’s speed dial.

This late in the season it's difficult to bring in somebody from outside who hasn't been in this offense either in training camp or during the season.

“We definitely have a couple guys on practice squad if we have to make a move,” Pederson said. “Obviously, we could look outside the building if we need to. But we’re going to work through that today and try to get something in place here pretty quick. We’re back on the field (Tuesday).”

Jeffery has been in and out of the lineup with injuries for much of the last two years. The one-time Bears Pro Bowler had only 43 catches for 490 yards and four TDs in 10 games this year.

Pederson said right tackle Lane Johnson is week-to-week with a sprained ankle. Halapoulivaati Vaitai, who finished the game Monday night at right tackle, will start against the Redskins Sunday. Pederson didn’t have a timetable on Johnson’s possible return.

The rest of the injury news was a little more positive.

Rookies Arcega-Whiteside and Miles Sanders, who both missed snaps Monday night, are “fine,” according to Pederson.

Cornerback Jalen Mills, who hurt his elbow, “should be OK,” Pederson said: “The only thing you’ll see probably is a brace on his elbow. Other than that he’s good.”

More on the Eagles

Carson Wentz reveals his baby’s gender in classic Carson Wentz style

Carson Wentz reveals his baby’s gender in classic Carson Wentz style

Did we expect anything less from Carson Wentz?

If you haven’t been following our beloved quarterback’s personal life, Carson Wentz and his wife Madison announced on Thanksgiving morning that they are expecting their first child. 

On Tuesday, Wentz posted an Instagram video from their gender reveal party, where the couple found out the sex of their baby in the most Wentz way possible — by throwing a football full of colored powder into the air and skeet shooting it down to reveal the colored powder.

The football doesn’t lie. It’s a girl! 

Baby Girl Wentz is due this spring and we can’t wait. Let’s begin the name guessing now.