FOXBORO -- During the offseason, the Patriots seemed to ignore a glaring need. A pure pass-rusher. In a draft stocked with them, they passed. And when the lockout ended, they took a flier on some veterans. One of them was Andre Carter, to whom they gave a one-year deal. He was immense, rolling up 10 sacks in 14 games before a quad injury at Denver ended his season. On Wednesday, Carter -- who had surgery on his leg last month -- was crutching through the plaza at Patriot Place. Eleven seasons and 163 games in the NFL and when the team he's on finally makes it to the playoffs, he can't go. Brutal. But Carter, who impressed this season with his professionalism and approachability, resisted the urge to lament. "To a certain extent it's just a little bit (difficult to be watching)," he admitted. "But at the end of the day, I can hold my head up high because I just know when it came to playing the games I was involved in I just gave it my all. "That's just something that you hold yourself accountable for and I'm just very proud to be a part of such a great team and very blessed to see my teammates have made it here to the AFC Championship."Carter said the fan interaction he's had on Twitter (@mr_carter93) has buoyed him. "I do get a lot of feedback from fans just saying, 'If it wasn't for you, there's no telling where we'd be.' That means a lot coming from them. From what I've gone through -- from the beginning to now with being out -- the love here and definitely the respect from fans has been tremendous," said Carter. Carter, who'll be 32 in May, says he doesn't want to play anywhere else. "I'll say this, it's just a fun place to play so why not come back and hopefully finish my career as a Patriot," he asked.
Chris Sale threw five shutout innings and Pablo Sandoval continued his torrid spring with two more hits as the Red Sox routed the Twins, 7-2, Sunday at the Twins' Hammond Stadium in Fort Myers.
Sale allowed six hits, with one walk and six strikeouts, in his 91-pitch outing. Manager John Farrell had told reporters before the game that Sale was scheduled to throw between 95 and 100 pitches. He has 26 strikeouts and 2 walks in 21 spring-training innings.
Sandoval lifted his exhibition average to .370 with a 2-for-3 performance, which included a double.
The Red Sox also got home runs from Christian Vazquez, Andrew Benintendi and Steve Selsky as they rallied from a 1-0 deficit with three runs in the seventh inning and four in the eighth.
BOSTON -- Avery Bradley, whose flu-like symptoms landed him in the hospital and forced him to miss Friday’s game against Phoenix, tells CSNNE.com that he will play tonight.
“I didn’t get [out of the hospital] until [Saturday] evening,” Bradley told CSNNE.com. “My stomach still hurts a little bit, but I’m all right. I’ll be good.”
The importance of Bradley to this team cannot be overstated.
His ability to make a major impact both as a scorer and an elite defender separates him from not only his teammates but from most guards in the NBA.
However, his health has been a season-long issue in some form or another, which can be seen in the fact that he has missed 24 games via injury or illness -- more than any other player on the Celtics roster.
When he has played, Bradley has delivered on several fronts.
He’s averaging 16.9 points per game while averaging 6.2 rebounds per game - both career highs -- which rank second and third, respectively, on the Celtics roster this season.