Welker: Slack will have to be picked up with Hernandez out

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Welker: Slack will have to be picked up with Hernandez out

FOXBORO -- The Patriots offense will undergo adjustments in Aaron Hernandez's absence. There will be more snaps to go around, and though no one will try to replace the tight end catch-for-catch, the receivers will do their damnedest to make it work.
"I think we all just go out there and try to do our jobs to the best of our ability," Wes Welker said Friday, "and whenever you're called upon you go out there and do that. And I think everybody's going to have to pick up the slack with Aaron being out."
It seems where Welker is concerned, the issue will be confounded for the rest of the season. Every minute of "clock", as Julian Edelman puts it, Welker gets or doesn't get will be analyzed and overanalyzed. Talk of The Phase Out will continue to fester.
He'll take it either way.
"Obviously, I want to be out there as much as possible. However I can contribute to help us win, that's my job."
Some of the snaps will go to Deion Branch, who was re-signed September 19. Welker said he's happy to welcome Branch back in the fold. Having multiple players who are familiar with the Patriots system is only a good thing.
"He's right back to where he was just a few weeks ago. He's been so dependable for so many years and will continue to be for us this year.
"I think it helps everyone. Anytime you have a player that can contribute like he can, I think that helps everybody all the way around."
How much Welker will help the team? To be determined. But you know someone will be watching that clock.

Brady to Amendola on Facebook: 'Paddle's fixed. Time for a rematch!'

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Brady to Amendola on Facebook: 'Paddle's fixed. Time for a rematch!'

When Danny Amendola told the world on Tuesday that he's better than Tom Brady at ping pong, the quarterback must have been listening. 

On his Facebook page, Brady published a snarling image of his face Photoshopped onto the body of a table tennis player. That paddle he broke after losing to Amendola three years ago? It's fixed, Brady explained in the caption. And he's ready for a rematch.

Talk about intimidation.

Wilfork embracing modeling, tells Brady to put him in touch with Gisele's people

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Wilfork embracing modeling, tells Brady to put him in touch with Gisele's people

Vince Wilfork will be one of many well-known athletes to strip down and pose nude for photographs in ESPN The Magazine's's Body issue, joining a group that includes Cubs pitcher Jake Arrietta, Broncos defensive end Von Miller and Heat guard Dwyane Wade.

Judging by his latest tweet, the former Patriots defensive lineman -- who is listed at 325 pounds -- is getting pretty comfortable with the idea of becoming a model.

Now it's up to Tom Brady to play match-maker, it seems. Gisele retired from the runway last year so maybe her people are on the lookout for some new talent.

Belichick: Buddy Ryan a father to 'a great football family'

Belichick: Buddy Ryan a father to 'a great football family'

Bill Belichick released a statement on Buddy Ryan's passing Tuesday afternoon. 

"Today is a sad day in football due to the passing of Buddy Ryan," Belichick said. "It was always very challenging to compete against Coach Ryan, who was father to a great football family that carries on his coaching and defensive tradition. My condolences are with the Ryan Family."

Belichick is certainly very familiar with Ryan's legacy and the tradition Ryan passed down to his sons Rex and Rob. The Patriots coach has competed against all three.

Rex Ryan has squared off with Belichick during his time as head coach for the Jets (2009-14) and Bills (2015-present), and their matchups go back to Rex's days with the Ravens (1999-2008) when he was a defensive line coach and then defensive coordinator.

Rob Ryan, like his brother, got his first NFL break when his father was the head coach of the Cardinals in the mid-1990s. His second break, though, came from Belichick. He joined the Patriots staff during Belichick's first year as head coach in 2000 and coached linebackers for four seasons in New England. He has since competed against Belichick as a defensive coordinator for the Raiders, Browns, Cowboys and Saints. Rob joined Rex in Buffalo this year to serve as an assistant on the staff there. 

For Belichick's thoughts on the impact of Buddy Ryan's famous "46" defense, we dug up some of his comments from a 2012 press conference that you can find here. He called the combination of Ryan's scheme and the talented players Ryan had at his disposal as defensive coordinator of the 1985 Super Bowl champion Bears "pretty unblockable."