The Patriots prepare to take on the Jacksonville Jaguars on Sunday, and Tom E. Curran checks in with the keys to a New England victory.
First on the list - The Patriots have to be tough in the red zone. Jacksonville has a number of weapons who can hurt the Pats on a short field. Cecil Shorts is a dangerous receiver and the Patriots should know where he is at all times. When in the red zone, the Pats must force the Jags to walk away with three points instead of seven.
Second, the Patriots need to keep Tom Brady upright. The Jacksonville pass rush will be aggressive and they have nothing to lose. The Jags are a 2-win team with an opportunity to make a statement against a premier opponent. Don't give them that chance, and don't let your franchise QB hit the dirt against a lower-tier opponent.
Finally, the Patriots must kill all hope early. The last thing the Pats need, is a Jacksonville team that has a chance to win it late in the game. The Jags have a number of players auditioning for spots on the 2013 roster so they'll be playing hard and looking to impress. The Patriots need to make sure the game is sealed early.
If the Patriots can do those three things, they should leave Florida with a win.
Right-handed hitting Chris Young gets the start in left field against left-hander Jose Quintana (3-1, 1.47 ERA) and Ryan Hanigan catchers knuckleballer Steven Wright (2-2, 1.37) as the Red Sox open a three-game series against the White Sox tonight in Chicago.
The White Sox have the best record in the American League at 18-8. The Red Sox (15-10) have moved into first-place in the A.L. East after a three-game sweep of the Yankees.
The full lineups:
Mookie Betts RF
Dustin Pedroia 2B
Xander Bogaerts SS
David Ortiz DH
Hanley Ramirez 1B
Travis Shaw 3B
Chris Young LF
Ryan Hanigan C
Jackie Bradley Jr. CF
Steven Wright RHP
Adam Eaton RF
Jimmy Rollins SS
Jose Abreau 1B
Todd Frazier 3B
Melky Cabrera LF
Brett Lawrie 2B
Jerry Sands DH
Dioner Navarro C
Austin Jackson CF
Tom Brady’s legal team, including recent hire former US Solictor General Ted Olson, have been granted the extension they were seeking for the deadline to file for a rehearing in the Deflategate case.
Despite the NFL’s opposition - lawyers for the league requested Monday that the motion be denied - the court ruled Tuesday in favor of the NFLPA and Brady. They now have until May 23 to file the request for a rehearing or rehearing en banc with the Second Circuit Court of Appeals, which last week reinstated his four-game Deflategate suspension.
Once Team Brady makes the request, the court still has to agree to take up the case again. And while many legal experts speculate the odds of that happening are low, this case has continued to confound observers as it has played out.
Tony Massarotti says if the team thinks Jimmy Garoppolo has something, don’t trade him because Tom Brady has more time left than they thought.