Troy Brown elected to Patriots Hall of Fame

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Troy Brown elected to Patriots Hall of Fame

FOXBORO The New England Patriots announced Monday that Troy Brown has been voted by fans as the 18th player and 19th member to enter the Patriots Hall of Fame. The induction ceremony will be held outside The Hall at Patriot Place on Saturday, Sept. 15, the day before the Patriots' 2012 regular season home opener.

In April, a 17-person nomination committee comprised of media, alumni and staff selected three candidates for consideration for the Patriots Hall of Fame. The three finalists were Brown, former free safety Fred Marion (1982-91) and former coach Bill Parcells (1993-96). Fans had five weeks (April 25-May 31) to vote on Patriots.com for the candidate they believed was most deserving of Hall of Fame induction.

Since the new process for induction was instituted in 2007, Brown earned the highest percentage of votes for any candidate, breaking last years record set by Drew Bledsoe. Brown joins Bledsoe as the second player to be selected by the fans into the Patriots Hall of Fame in their first year of eligibility.

Troy Brown will always be special to me, as he was my sweethearts favorite player during his career, said Patriots chairman and CEO Robert Kraft. Clearly, a lot of Patriots fans shared her sentiment and I am proud that we will honor Troy with his induction into the Patriots Hall of Fame this fall.

To me, Troy was the consummate Patriot who always put team goals ahead of personal ones. His height and speed made him a proverbial underdog in a league that always featured taller and faster players. But, his heart and perseverance made him a champion and a fan favorite. The Patriots record books will always show that Troy was one of the greatest receivers and punt returners in franchise history, but Patriots fans know that he was so much more than that. His selfless contributions to the success of the team on offense, defense and special teams made him unique as a player and helped deliver three Super Bowl titles. For 15 years, Troy personified what it meant to be a Patriot, both on and off the field. With his induction into the Patriots Hall of Fame, his legacy will be preserved for generations to come.

Troy Brown is the ultimate team player and one of the greatest competitors I have ever had the privilege of coaching, said Patriots coach Bill Belichick. Offense, defense, special teams if there was a job to do, Troy embraced it and did it at a championship level. No matter the situation or conditions, Troy raised the bar of excellence and helped create a winning tradition we strive to uphold. The bigger the game, the more Troy stepped up. There is no more deserving player of any accolade that comes his way than Troy Brown.

Brown spent his entire 15-season NFL career with the Patriots (1993-2007) after being drafted by the team in the eighth round (198th overall) of the 1993 NFL Draft. The 5-foot-10-inch, 196-pound receiver, punt returner and defensive back retired as the Patriots all-time leading receiver with 557 career receptions and as the teams all-time leading punt returner with 252 career returns. He finished ranked second in team history with 6,366 career receiving yards and was tied for the franchise record with three punt returns for touchdowns.

Brown played in 192 games, placing him fourth on the franchises all-time games played list, and his 15 seasons with the franchise tied Julius Adams for the second-longest tenure in a Patriots uniform behind Steve Grogans franchise-record 16 seasons. Brown was a five-time co-captain for the club (2002-06) and earned Pro Bowl honors in 2001.

The complete list of Patriots Hall of Famers (with their year of induction) is listed below:

Players
John Hannah (1991)
Nick Buoniconti (1992)
Gino Cappelletti (1992)
Bob Dee (1993)
Jim Lee Hunt (1993)
Steve Nelson (1993)
Vito Babe Parilli (1993)
Mike Haynes (1994)
Steve Grogan (1995)
Andre Tippett (1999)
Bruce Armstrong (2001)
Stanley Morgan (2007)
Ben Coates (2008)
Jim Nance (2009)
Sam Cunningham (2010)
Jon Morris (2011)
Drew Bledsoe (2011)

Contributor
William Billy Sullivan (2009)

Gronkowski nominated for Walter Payton Man of the Year Award

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Gronkowski nominated for Walter Payton Man of the Year Award

FOXBORO -- Rob Gronkowski is up for one of the NFL's most prestigious awards, and it's not simply for what he's done while on the football field. 

The Patriots tight end is the team's nominee for the Walter Payton NFL Man of the Year Award, it was announced on Wednesday. Each year the award recognizes one player for his excellence on and off the field.

“We’re proud to honor these outstanding men who represent the NFL’s best on and off the field,” said NFL commissioner Roger Goodell. “Our players have a unique platform to make a difference far beyond the field of play. We salute these individuals who are exemplary in their commitment to making a positive impact in communities across the globe through their dedicated service and philanthropic efforts.”

The winner will be announced in Houston on the night before Super Bowl LI.

Gostkowski named AFC special teams player of week

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Gostkowski named AFC special teams player of week

FOXBORO -- It's been an uncharacteristically erratic season for Stephen Gostkowski, but on Sunday the Patriots Pro Bowl kicker was dialed in. And his four field-goal performance against Los Angeles earned him AFC Special Teams Player of the Week honors. It is the second time this season and the fifth time in his career that Gostkowski has been named AFC Special Teams Player of the Week, having also won the award after the first game of the season at Arizona. 

Gostkowski's missed four field goals so far this season. He hasn't missed four in a year since 2012 when he missed six field goals. He's also missed three extra points. While the Patriots were a little downcast about the inability of their offense to close out drives against the Rams, an ancillary benefit was undoubtedly Gostkowski having a day that should boost his confidence going forward.