Spikes brings big energy to return


Spikes brings big energy to return

FOXBORO -- Brandon Spikes didn't need to tell reporters how ecstatic he was to be practicing again. Of course, he did
"It was just fun to get back in pads. Its been a long offseason, and Im happy to be out there running again.
"Its kind of frustrating watching from the sideline, but just to get out and get a little contact, it feels good."
But it was obvious enough on the field.
Spikes had a knee scope in February. The Patriots linebacker has consequently been limited during OTAs, minicamp, and started training camp on the PUP list. Once activated, he participated in positional drills, but not much else.
Tuesday saw him jump back into 11-on-11 and he dove headfirst. Spikes went hard after Dan Connolly on his first snap. After the play, he immediately started jumping around, high-stepping. The energy he brought to the drills -- the whooping, chest-bumping, high-fiving -- was infectious.
"Just happiness; I was excited," Spikes grinned.
He was equally enthusiastic when asked about the rookies.
"They're just relentless to the ball. A lot of guys, you can tell they're hard workers; they play hard and that's one thing I respect -- a passionate player. As long as they can just keep getting better throughout the camp, that's fine with me."
Spikes brings plenty of passion himself. As long as he's out there.

Bennett on Goodell: 'Where is he? He's like Waldo right now'

Bennett on Goodell: 'Where is he? He's like Waldo right now'

FOXBORO -- Leave it to Martellus Bennett, the children's book author, to make a cartoon reference when asked about the lingering effects of Deflategate. 

Could hear the "Where's Roger?" chants that rang throughout Gillette Stadium on Sunday night, a reporter wondered? Bennett deflected at first. 

"Who's Roger," he asked? 


Then it was pointed out to him that the chants were directed to NFL commissioner Roger Goodell, who opted to attend the NFC title game in Atlanta -- his second trip to the Georgia Dome in as many weeks -- instead of the AFC title game between the Patriots and Steelers. 

"Oh yeah," Bennett said, his memory apparently jogged. "Where is he? He's like Waldo right now. He didn't want to come here."

Tom Brady was asked about the chants as well. He had to have heard them, a reporter noted. 

"I didn't hear that chant," Brady insisted. "I did hear them singing to Bon Jovi, though, that was pretty cool."

Awaiting the Patriots in Houston will be the Atlanta Falcons, obviously, but one side plot will be the potential for a face-to-face for Goodell and the Patriots.

In the past, Goodell has handed the Lombardi Trophy to the Super Bowl winner following the game -- a tradition one would expect would continue this year regardless of who wins. The commissioner has also awarded the game's MVP award to the honoree on the morning after the game. Following the Super Bowl two seasons ago, Brady and Goodell shared a stage as Brady accepted the MVP hardware.