Scott: 'I'm just here to win'

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Scott: 'I'm just here to win'

Any visits?
Not really. I was glad that things ended up the way they did off the bat so I could put it behind me. And what better way to start than come to an organization like this?

Impression of Gillette:
I mean, there's a great atmosphere here, don't get me wrong. But there's a great atmosphere in Oakland. But like I said, I'm just glad for the new opportunity.

Seau:
I just want to say, to his family, my deepest condolences. It's definitely a tragedy.

Set himself apart on DL:
I just try to be myself. I'm a hard worker and I don't like to lose. I'm just here to win.

Career off track by injuries?
I mean, it was what it was, man. That's the name of the game. I've seen a lot of different things in the league. And like I said, I'm just glad to be here -- to start over.

Had a big game vs. Patriots:
I was just reminded of that the other day. I do remember that -- it was rookie year and it was pretty disastrous game in the fact the weather was just awful.

Matt Cassel?
Yeah, yeah. Too bad it wasn't Brady.

Get back to health of first two years?
Oh, I plan on it. Definitely plan on it.

Relationships with anybody here?
Gallery, of course; I played with him in Oakland. We were just hanging together as we were getting to know all the guys. But everybody's really nice, and pretty cool, guys are taking me under their wing and stuff, showing me the ropes and stuff like that.

Impressions of Patriots DL?
They play the game the way the game's supposed to be played. Just hard and tough-nosed football. You can tell in their play that they're great players on and off the field.

Q: Do you find that there is more awareness now among NFL players of the dangers of concussions?

TS: I definitely think over the years, players are more and more aware of concussions, just of the long-term effects. But come gameday, you're not thinking about concussions, you're thinking about winning and being productive. Concussions are going to happen. They try to make new helmets and different types of things to try to prevent concussions and that's great and don't get me wrong, but at the end of the day, it's going to be a part of football. There's always going to be head-to-head collisions, you can't prevent that."

Q: But if you get your bell rung these days, it's more like you'll head to the bench.

TS: Definitely. It's not like it was. If you even mention a headache, they're taking your helmet. They're not joking around anymore about concussions.

Q: What have you been able to do on field with coaches?

TS: We've just been working. Just different position stuff. That's been cool. Just getting to meet the coaches, on and off the field. We've definitely been working hard, that's for sure.

Q: How about Pepper Johnson?

TS: I love him He's a great guy. He's definitely a no-BS guy, and that's what I like.

Q: Was it Turner Gill who converted you from a TE to DL?

TS: Yes, back in 2006.

Q: What was that whole transformation like?

TS: At first I was shocked. I was a backup tight end. We ran a lot of double tight end stuff. It was still a backup role. He told me, 'Listen, we're going to start you right off the bat, so just get ready.' I just took it and ran with it. I always had more of a defensive mindset, so I loved the transition.

Q: Have they put the bug in your ear like Vrabel?

TS: No, I mean, if that were to happen, I would take it with open arms. But my role is, I'm just going to get on the field any way I can.

Q: What was the reaction in the locker room about Seau?

TS: I mean people were just saying that they couldn't believe it. It was one of those things that it hasn't hit people yet, that he's really gone. Like I said, I didn't know him, but at the same time, it's definitely a sad day.

Rex Ryan’s erratic act is his lone consistency

Rex Ryan’s erratic act is his lone consistency

With the Bills 0-2 and sinking slowly in a morass of dysfunction last week, Rex Ryan was anything but his corny, wise-cracking, false-bravado-bringing self. He was subdued before the Bills took on the Cardinals.

Now, with the Bills having spanked Arizona and the Patriots up next, Rex is back at it with the erratic, putting forth an eyebrow-raisingly bad Bill Belichick impersonation to start the week then parachuting into a conference call with Julian Edelman posing as a Buffalo News reporter.

He’s the guy at the house party knocking over the chips and drinks at 9 p.m. and wondering where the motherscratching karaoke machine is because he wants to SING!!

Asked to account for the behavior change from last week to this, Rex’ verbatim response was a look into his addled mind.

“I was still myself, I think just part of it. This week, look guys, we know who we’re playing. When you look at the ESPN deal, I think they’re ranked number one---I don’t know. Like I said, they’re number two, but I don’t think we’re ranked number one so---look, we know the task is going to be a big one. The quarterback thing, yeah you got to be prepared and you actually have to be prepared for three different guys. They’re no dummies, they’re leaving it out there, they can know who it is, I get it. They’re certainly not going to do us any favors.”

Give that a quick re-read.

My verbal syntax and wandering trains of thought aren’t evidence of an ordered mind either, so I do empathize with Rex. But neither am I the head coach of one of 32 entries in the NFL, a pretty high-profile league in which an ordered presentation from the guy in charge is usually a positive.

I spoke at length with Tim Graham – who really does work for the Buffalo News – during our Quick Slants Podcast this week.

Rex’ constant insistence on his own authenticity feels to me like a misdirection. He chooses who he’s going to be and how he’s going to be each week. That’s the only consistent thing about him, other than the fact that he is an eminently likable guy specifically because he is so vulnerable.

 For a guy that wants to projecting an image of a guy who just doesn’t give a s***, he spends a lot of time thinking about this stuff.  

“I learned a long time ago, you got to be yourself in this league and that [acting like Bill Belichick] wouldn’t have worked,” Ryan explained. “If I tried to be like Bill Belichick that would never work for me, just like, not that he ever would, but if he’s going to try to be like somebody else, that ain’t going to work for him. And so, at least one thing we have in common is the fact that we know you better be yourself in this league and look, I think it’s hilarious when he’s on there because that’s who he is but it’s great and he does it better than anybody else. Some guys that try to copy that style, they’re phonies. Belichick does it, that’s who he is. [Gregg] Popovich is probably the closest thing in the NBA. Like those guys are classics but that’s who they are and they’re fantastic and I think the record speaks for itself but you talk about a consistent guy, Bill Belichick is the most consistent guy there is and I try to be consistent, albeit in a much different way.”

Consistent in his inconsistency. Great fun at parties. No way to go through life as an NFL head coach.

 

Patriots have perfect attendance at Thursday walkthrough

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Patriots have perfect attendance at Thursday walkthrough

FOXBORO -- The Patriots opted to have a walkthrough on Thursday, an in-season rarity for Bill Belichick's club. 

The low-key session makes sense, though. Because the team practiced on Tuesday and Wednesday of this week, it will still have two practices under its belt, as it usually does every week. Now, instead of having just one walkthrough on a Friday, as the Patriots do typically, they'll have had two. 

All players were present for the on-the-field work, including quarterbacks Jimmy Garoppolo and Jacoby Brissett. Members of the media were only able to watch the team walk onto the field, and they were treated to a fashion show of sorts. Bill Belichick stood out with his hooded sweatshirt, as did Jamie Collins, who for some reason wore plastic bags around his gloves. Practice squad defensive lineman Geneo Grissom brought a bit of a business casual look to the field, sporting a collared shirt under his sweatshirt.