SB46 Intel: Pollard's tune has changed since 2008

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SB46 Intel: Pollard's tune has changed since 2008

Bernard Pollard's turned into a hardass since going to Baltimore.

The guy who wants to see the Patriots get a "thrashing" from the Giants, the guy who called Tom Brady a "pretty boy" last week, the guy who got exposed as a coverage liability then complained that the Patriots were "dinking and dunking" -- as if there's some kind of bonus for throwing the ball into tighter coverage against better players -- wasn't always such a richard.

Here's what Pollard said days after blowing out Tom Brady's ACL and MCL with a hit in the 2008 season opener when Pollard was with the Chiefs:

"As soon as he went down, I started saying, 'I'm sorry, my bad, I'm sorry. That right there, that's not going to bring him back, it's not going to heal that injury any quicker than what it is -- that's just the type of person I am.

"It was not a dirty play, I'm not a dirty player. It's football. I can't do anything but pray for him and hope he comes back. As soon as he went down -- if I was a dirty player, I wouldn't have apologized, I'd have got up and went my way. I immediately started apologizing. I went to my coach later and let my coach know (it was not an intentional play). For the people who said it was a dirty play, that's their opinion."

Yet last week, when the current Raven was asked about Brady, he said, "Ive not spoke to him directly, indirectly weve spoken through other people. If you are asking me if I apologized? No. And Im not going to apologize for it. Its football."

A little more than a year after the hit on Brady, it was Pollard's bad luck to be on the scene when Wes Welker's ACL blew out in Houston with Pollard closing in for a tackle.

"I heard Wes yell out, the same way I heard Tom yell out,'' Pollard told Sports Illustrated's Peter King. "It was the same yell. It was terrible. He went down right in front of me. I saw his knee buckle, then I fell on him, and when he went down, I said, 'Just my luck.' ''

Nothing Pollard did on either play was particularly villainous. Nor was the tackle he made on Rob Gronkowski on Sunday that twisted Gronk's ankle in a grotesque fashion. It was all just football.

But it seems Pollard wants to change his image from a solid, hard-hitting competitor with respect for opponents to a black-hat wearing, stuff-talking renegade.

That's fine. Although Terrell Suggs does it much more effectively, entertainingly, and with more talent to back it up, maybe Pollard can work that angle.

It would just help if he was a little more consistent so everyone knew which Bernard Pollard was which.

Quotes, notes and stars: Pedroia was focused on winning, not streak

Quotes, notes and stars: Pedroia was focused on winning, not streak

BOSTON -- Quotes, notes and stars from the Red Sox’ 8-3 win over the Royals:

QUOTES

“I hadn’t really thought about it. Trying to win games. It’s late in the year . . . I don’t really have time to sit back and pat myself on the back for anything. We’re trying to win as a team.” - Dustin Pedroia on the importance of the 11-for-11 stretch in his career.

“It’s fun. It’s why you go to work in December, January, February. It’s all the work you put in up to this point. It feels good to go out there and get the results you expect to get, especially against a team like [the Royals] who is hot as they are right now.” - David Price on pitching meaningful games with a playoff-like atmosphere.

“Yeah, yeah we [knew about the streak] . . .  It was an awesome roll and it was fun to see . . . Every time I went up to hit, I let Salvador Perez know.” - Xander Bogaerts on Dustin Pedroia’s 11-for-11 streak.

“I think we’ve been able to handle velocity very well. We’ve got good bat-speed in out lineup, and we’re able to handle that.” - John Farrell on the offense thriving against good pitching.

 

NOTES

* David Ortiz played in his 1,000th game at Fenway Park, becoming the fifth player to do so.

* Ortiz also became the first player ever to play 2,000 games as the designated hitter.

* Mookie Betts scored his 100th run of the season off his 29th home run of the year, joining Fred Lynn, Johnny Pesky and Ted Williams as the only players to reach 100 runs before turning 24.

* The Red Sox hit back-to-back home runs for the fourth time this season with Betts and Hanley Ramirez going yard in the fifth.

* With his 2-for-4 day at the plate, Jackie Bradley Jr. improved to 34-for-94 (.362) batting ninth.

 

STARS

1) Dustin Pedroia

Pedroia finished 4-for-5, extending his streak to 11 hits in 11 at-bats, finishing one shy of tying the MLB record.

2) David Price

Price logged his fourth straight quality start with his six-inning, two-run start. He also dropped his ERA below 4.00 for the first time since his Opening Day start with Boston.

3) Salvador Perez

Perez finished 2-for-3 with two home runs. Saturday marked only the second multi-home run game of his career.