Belichick not getting hung up on travel

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Belichick not getting hung up on travel

The Rams left for the United Kingdom Monday morning. This weekend will mark the team's first NFL London game and St. Louis no doubt wanted to get acclimated.
As for the Patriots, their feet will remain on the ground for a few more days.
The players were given Monday off and head coach Bill Belichick briefly addressed the U.K. trip on a conference call.
He did acknowledge that having made the trip in 2009 makes things easier in terms of organization and logistics. But so much has changed since New England played the Buccaneers at Wembley Stadium that Belichick sounded uninterested in comparisons."We have an awful lot of players on our team that are with us now that werent on that trip. Individually, I think there isnt a great deal of experience for that. Organizationally, some of the things we know we have to plan for that we dealt with the last time, we can learn from and maybe improve on. But each year is different, each trip is different, each team is different. I think the needs of this team are a little different than the needs of the 09 team when we went out there."
The Patriots depart on Thursday.
It's a long flight to London, some six hours or so, which is a similar duration to New England's trip to Seattle in Week 6. Altogether, this stretch of season creates a somewhat brutal back-and-forth.
So it goes, said Belichick.
"Its always good to play at home like yesterday, but we know at the start of the year were going to have eight home games and eight road games. For every home game, theres a road game and vice versa. Its all going to come out the same in the end. Theres nothing really we can do about that. Well take them all as they come, like all the rest of the teams do in this league."Extending the NFL's gracious hand across the pond? Perhaps a job for PR."Wherever they schedule them, well show up and play them," the coach said. "Thats really what its about for us."

Sanu on Patriots' Super Bowl comeback: Lady Gaga's long halftime hurt Falcons

Sanu on Patriots' Super Bowl comeback: Lady Gaga's long halftime hurt Falcons

Three weeks removed from his team blowing a 25-point, second-half lead in the Super Bowl, Mohamed Sanu offered a possible explanation for the Atlanta Falcons losing their edge against the Patriots.

Lady Gaga.

More specifically, it was the half-hour-plus halftime show that interrupted the Falcons' rhythm, the receiver said Friday on the NFL Network's "Good Morning Football."

“Usually, halftime is only like 15 minutes, and when you’re not on the field for like an hour, it’s just like going to work out, like a great workout, and you go sit on the couch for an hour and then try to start working out again,” Sanu said.

Sanu was asked if the delay was something you can simulate in practice. 

"It's really the energy [you can't duplicate]," he said. "I don't know if you can simulate something like that. That was my first time experiencing something like that."

Patriots coach Bill Belichick did simulate it. In his Super Bowl practices, he had his team take long breaks in the middle.

Sanu also addressed the Falcons' pass-first play-calling that didn't eat up clock while the Patriots came back.

"The thought [that they weren't running the ball more] crossed your mind, but as a player, you're going to do what the coach [Dan Quinn] wants you to do." Sanu said. "He's called plays like that all the time."


 

It's official: Patriots nab third-round compensatory pick in Collins trade

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It's official: Patriots nab third-round compensatory pick in Collins trade

The Patriots received a conditional fourth-round pick in 2018 from the Browns in return for Jamie Collins. That's how the trade was described on the league's transaction wire. 

The "condition" of that fourth-rounder? Well, if the Browns received a third-round compensatory pick in 2017, the Patriots would nab that pick instead. 

On Friday, the NFL announced that the Browns had in fact been awarded a third-round compensatory pick, which meant that almost three full weeks after Super Bowl LI, everything was still coming up Patriots.

In actuality, the odds were pretty good all along that the Patriots would get what they got

Cleveland lost Pro Bowl center Alex Mack in free agency last offseason when he opted to sign with the Falcons. Because compensatory picks are based on free agents lost and free agents acquired, and because the Browns did not sign any similarly-impactful free agents, there was a good chance Mack's departure would render a third-round comp pick that would be shipped to New England.

Had Mack suffered a significant injury that forced his play to drop off or limited his time on the field, a third-rounder may have been out of the question, but he played well (named a Pro Bowler and a Second Team All-Pro) and stayed healthy -- lucky for the Patriots -- missing just 17 total snaps in the regular season. 

The Browns comp pick that will be sent to New England is No. 103 overall. The Patriots were also awarded a fifth-round comp pick, No. 185 overall. That was a result of the league weighing the departures of Akiem Hicks and Tavon Wilson against the arrival of Shea McClellin.

The Patriots now have nine selections in this year's draft: One first-rounder; one second-rounder; two third-rounders; one fourth-rounder*; two fifth-rounders; two seventh-rounders.

The third-round compensatory pick acquired by the Patriots carries additional value this year in that it is the first year in which compensatory picks can be traded. A near top-100 overall selection may allow the Patriots to move up the draft board or build assets in the middle rounds should they be inclined to deal. And we know they oftentimes are. 

* The Patriots forfeited their highest fourth-round selection in this year's draft as part of their Deflategate punishment. They acquired a fourth-round pick from the Seahawks last year. Because that would have been the higher of their two selections, that's the one they'll lose. They will make their own fourth-round pick at No. 137 overall.