Brown: Belichick at his best during Colts weeks

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Brown: Belichick at his best during Colts weeks

By Tom E. Curran
CSNNE.com Patriots Insider Follow @tomecurran
FOXBORO - The proliferation of ex-Patriots in the media has given added insight into the hooded world of the dynastic Patriots. Rodney Harrison, Willie McGinest, Tedy Bruschi, Ty Law, Christian Fauriaand Heath Evans all have hit their stride in front of the cameras. But no ex-Patriot shoots it straighter and is more willing to pullback the veil than Troy Brown.Which is ironic. Of all the players I mentioned, he was hands down the worst interview in the locker room when heplayed.If the locker room shut down to the mediaat 11:45 a.m., he'dcome in from the weight room at 11:44. And if he talked it was a "just the facts" recitation of platitudes. Now? What would you like to know?And Brown confirmed what one presumed. When the Colts were next on the schedule, the intensity ratcheted up significantly. "Every week we played the Colts it was intense," Brown said Tuesday night. "Those were the days Bill (Belichick) was at his best and making sure you had everything about the Colts covered - offensively, defensively, and definitely don't let them beat you on special teams, because that was the weakest part of their team. When theydid punt." Brown, who does work for us at Comcast SportsNet and also at WEEI,was speaking at Waxy O'Connors in Foxboro on Tuesday night where he helped hype CSN's "New England Football Night", which debuts Thursday at 7 p.m.When preparing for a big game, Brown said, things were ratcheted up."For us on the inside, it was always different," he explained. "For you guys on the outside it was business as usual, another work week -'Another good team. Peyton Manning's a good quarterback, one of the best we ever played. Tony Dungy's a great coach, blase, blah. Dwight Freeney can rush the passer.' For you guys it was, 'Everybody's great.' For us on the inside, there was a little added emphasis on those opponents, the Colts the Jets."We knew that. And the Patriots knew we knew that. So why not play along and tell it like it wasis? Probably because treating the Colts as special meant that the team would run the risk of treating the Bills as not special. The easiest message for Belichick to give his players was the same message week after week, season after season. If the script never changed, he didn't have to worry about their approach to a game or what they'd say to us. "Even if Bill didn't say anything about that stuff, guys kinda took it to heart," said Brown. " 'We're playing the Jets; this is where Bill used to be.' 'We're playing the Colts, this is Peyton Manning vs. Tom Brady. You took it a little more personal even if we didn't say it to you guys. You could feel the inensity in the locker room and meetingroom approaching game time. It was a more fun week but we probably lost a week or two from our lives from the stress."

Tom E. Curran can be reached at tcurran@comcastsportsnet.com. Follow Tom on Twitter at http:twitter.comtomecurran

BOSTON SPORTS TONIGHT PODCAST: Is Rob Gronkowski good to go?

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BOSTON SPORTS TONIGHT PODCAST: Is Rob Gronkowski good to go?

00:43 - Rob Gronkowski says he's ready to go against the Texans. Michael Holley, Tom Giles and Kayce Smith talk about this risks of him playing while injured.

05:47 - Phil A.Perry follows up the Gronk discussion with a deeper breakdown of Gronk’s decision to play this Sunday.

10:02 - David Price appears to be easing back into baseball after pitching Friday night. Evan Drellich joins BST to talk about Price’s outing in Cincinnati. 

16:12 - The BST crew recaps the Red Sox win over Reds. Drellich returns to analyze how the pitchers performed and how that will impact the Red Sox postseason stretch.  

Danny Amendola embraces delayed follow-up to strong Week 1 performance

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Danny Amendola embraces delayed follow-up to strong Week 1 performance

This actually won’t be the first time that Danny Amendola had to wait to follow up a strong season-opener with the Pats. 

As the veteran receiver aims to return Sunday from a concussion and knee injury after leaving the Pats’ Week 1 loss early and missing Week 2 altogether, he’ll try to build a Week 1 performance that saw him lead the Pats with 100 yards on six receptions. 

The stop and start is somewhat reminiscent of Amendola’s first year with New England in 2013, when he had 10 receptions for 104 yards in the season-opener. He suffered a groin injury in that game, however, and didn’t play again until Week 5. At least the wait is shorter this time around. 

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“I mean, there’s going to be bumps and bruises along the way, but that’s football, right?” Amendola said Friday. “But I feel really good today, feel strong, so get ready tomorrow and just continue to prepare.”

In that first game back in 2013, Amendola again led the Pats in receiving yards, but it was in a terrible offensive showing for New England. All it took was four receptions for 55 yards to be the Patriots’ best receiver in a 13-6 loss to Cincinnati in which Tom Brady had a rare scoreless game. 

If Amendola can pick up where he left off in Week 1, the Pats will be in good shape. They’re also expected to have Rob Gronkowski and Chris Hogan ready to go, but Amendola was Tom Brady’s most reliable weapon in the Chiefs game, even though Brandin Cooks made a bigger impact with two pass interference penalties drawn in the red zone. 

Not known for his durability towards the end of his time in St. Louis, this will be the fourth of Amendola’s five regular seasons in New England in which he didn’t play in all 16 games. He played the full season in 2014, 14 games in 2015 and 12 games in 2013 and 2016. 

With Julian Edelman out, Brady could certainly use Amendola’s services as often as possible. That’s especially if he plays the way he did in Week 1. 

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