FOXBORO - In 2001, one of the stories that personalized the September 11 attacks locally was that of Joe Andruzzi. The Patriots' guard was from Staten Island, New York and his three brothers - all New York City firefighters - were involved in the response. There was uncertainty, sadness, relief and mourning from Andruzzi that week. Earlier this week, the 11th anniversary of the attacks arrived and another Patriot from Staten Island, safety Steve Gregory, recalled the event with a story similar to Andruzzi's. His parents are both retired police officers in Brooklyn. "It's one of those days, it's so clear to remember," Gregory said Wednesday. "I was in college (at Syracuse)and I can just remember sitting in class when I heard about it and I went into a dining hall and there'sa TV there and there were hundreds of people just standing there watching in silence. "Nobody could believe what was going on and then, as we're watching it, the secondplane hit live. And then it was just crazy, man, people started screaming and running all over the place."Everyone, it seemed, knew someone at least tangentially involved in what was going on. Gregory knew many someones. "Up in Syracuse, a lot of people were from the City area, they had family and friends that were down there so there werereal personal relationships that a lot of people had up there in Syracuse," Gregory recalled. "The buildings came down and then my father went down to Ground Zero to help out. He was down there every day from the time the building went down for...a while. It was just a crazy time. You'd hear all the different stories of people on my block... The girl across the street from me, she might have been two years older than me, she was lost in one of the buildings, she had just gotten a job there. Family members, firefighters, all these different stories."Gregory's father, now retired from the force, got a call from Steve on Sunday. "I talked to him," said Gregory. "He watches the stuff when it's on TV and he's said to me, 'I don't even really want to watch it anymore because it brings back all those memories that were so horrible that day. Being down there and just trying to help out as much as you can and you see some horrific things.' Every year, to keep reliving that experience is hard I feel for him in that way." We seem a long way from the post-attacks unity we all experienced, I said to Gregory. "It's crazy how in that time of turmoil and the threat of terrorism, we all came together for that one cause just to stick together and be united as we should be," he agreed. "You wish that it could always be that way. There are so many people in the world, we'll never be truly united but if we could just try our best to understand that we are all one country, we all need to stick together and help each other out. That's the main goal of this country, right?"
Tom Giles and CSN Patriots Insider Tom E. Curran discuss Donald Trump mentioning Bill Belichick and Tom Brady in his speech and the questioned asked by the media to Belichick and Brady in response.
FOXBORO -- The Patriots will head into Sunday's AFC title game with seven players listed as questionable, including three receivers.
Danny Amendola, Malcolm Mitchell and Chris Hogan have all been limited in practices this week due to their injuries. Amendola has been dealing with an ankle issue since a Week 13 win over the Rams, while Mitchell has not played since injuring his knee in Week 16 against the Jets. Hogan suffered a thigh injury against the Texans and left the game in the third quarter.
Both Hogan and Mitchell indicated this week that they were moving in the right direction in terms of their recoveries. One would think that the Patriots would need at least one, if not both, to help stress the back end of the Steelers secondary this weekend.
Hogan has been the team's most consistent down-the-field threat this season, averaging a whopping 17.9 yards per catch during the regular season. Against the Texans, before his injury, he reeled in four passes for 95 yards.
Mitchell, meanwhile, had a very productive second half of his rookie season before he was hurt. He compiled 25 catches for 306 yards between Weeks 11 and 16, establishing himself as one of Tom Brady's go-to targets.
The overall health of the Patriots receiving corps -- which will also include Julian Edelman and Michael Floyd -- will bear watching when the Patriots and Steelers kick off in two days.
The injury report for Sunday's Patriots-Steelers game:
NEW ENGLAND PATRIOTS
WR Danny Amendola (ankle)
TE Martellus Bennett (knee)
RB Brandon Bolden (knee)
LB Dont'a Hightower (shoulder)
WR Chris Hogan (thigh)
WR Malcolm Mitchell (knee)
DL Jabaal Sheard (knee)
TE Ladarius Green (concussion/illness)
LB James Harrison (shoulder/triceps)
RB Fitzgerald Toussaint (concussion)
RB Le'Veon Bell (not injury related)
K Chris Boswell (illness)
LB Anthony Chickillo (ankle)
S Sean Davis (shoulder)
C B.J. Finney (illness)
WR Darrius Heyward-Bay (illness)
DE Ricardo Mathews (ankle)
QB Zach Mettenberger (illness)
S Michael Mitchell (not injury related)
QB Ben Roethlisberger (not injury related)
LB Vince Williams (shoulder)