Curran and Mayo: The odd couple

917271.jpg

Curran and Mayo: The odd couple

Yes, they talk football. But after 2 12 years on weekly interviews on 'Quick Slants', Comcast SportsNet's Tom E. Curran and Patriots linebacker Jerod Mayo talk so much, much more . . .

ON FASHION
Curran: "This is my sweater that I wore to cheer you up (after Sunday's loss to the Seahawks)."

Mayo: "Your Bill Cosby sweater. I like it."

Curran: "I thought you would feel better . . . "

Mayo: "Really Christmas-y, Christmas-y."

Curran: ". . . if I wore a silly sweater."

Mayo: "That's not silly, that's . . . just dumb."

Curran: "Do you feel better, though?"

Mayo: "I do feel better about calling your sweater dumb. That makes me feel better."

Curran: "Look, it's always difficult after a loss. It's hard for me to know exactly which way to go with you 'cause, well, it's a nice intimate setting at the Renaissance Hotel, where the interviews are taped and I don't want to make you irritated. But I thought today I would commiserate. "

Mayo: "Great word."

Curran: "Thank you.

Mayo: "But let's get it straight. It's difficult after a win coming to watch you dressed like that. Just being honest."

ON ATHLETIC COMPETITION
Curran: "I play men's softball and sometimes I'll play flag football and there's times that we lose. And I know what it feels like. There's a lot of things you wish had gone differently, there's a lot of things you say, 'What could I have done?' I know what you're feeling."

Mayo: "You look like a born loser. You look like you were a loser coming straight out, out of the womb."

Curran: "No, I was not!"

Mayo: "For guys like us, you know, New England Patriots, it is difficult, and at this point all we can do is change the page and move on."

Curran: "This was good for 2 12 years, and now it's just going downhill . . . ."

WITH APOLOGIES TO MAMA CURRAN
Mayo: "We say guys like you were beat at birth. That's how we say it. "

Curran: "Beat at birth??"

Mayo: "You were beat at birth. When I see a guy like you across from me, I'm like, 'Ah, he was beat at birth'. "

Curran: "My mother watches this show."

Mayo: "Sorry."

Curran: "He doesn't mean it."

Mayo: "Sorry, Mama Curran."

Curran: "Perfect."

MORE FASHION, AND MORE APOLOGIES TO MAMA CURRAN
Curran: "Did Sunday's loss at Seattle make for a long flight home?"

Mayo: "It was a very long flight home."

Curran: "I can appreciate that."

Mayo: "If I had that sweater, it would have been shorter."

Curran: "You could have wrapped it around you, swaddled yourself . . . "

Mayo: "Exactly. Or used it as toilet paper. However you want to use it."

Curran: "My mother actually knitted this sweater, too, Jerod."

Mayo: "Sorry, Mama Curran, for the second time in this show."

Curran: "Been great so far."

ON DINNER
Mayo: "Do you know what? To be honest with you, I don't pay attention to the media. I've said this time and time again on this show. I don't pay attention to you . . . "

Curran: (To the camera) "He just shows up to talk to the media."

Mayo: " . . . I don't pay attention to what anyone has to say. It's like right now, I'm just talking to the camera. I don't even feel you right here beside me. So at the end of the day, it's all about the New England Patriots and getting better."

(Curran takes a sip of water and blows over towards Mayo.)

Mayo: "I can smell your breath." To the camera: "He had jalapenos."

Curran: "Not yet."

MORE ATHLETIC COMPETITION
Curran (after Mayo had finished praising the Jets): "Yeah, you didn't mention the quarterback, though, did you?"

Mayo: "Mark Sanchez is a good player. And no matter what you say, he's playing well these last couple of weeks. So he's a dangerous player."

Curran: "He throws balls where they shouldn't be! Did you see the touchdown . . . "

Mayo: "Can you throw better than him?"

Curran: "Yeah!"

Mayo: (Stares stone-faced at the camera.) "My face says it all."

STILL MORE FASHION
Curran: 'You know, you're wearing your throwback uniforms this week. You look good in red?"

Mayo: "I do."

Curran: "Did you know that? Did I just break the news to you?"

Mayo: "You did. You did. I do look good in red. But I also look good in blue."

Curran: "You do. Well, you'd also look good in a Christmas sweater."

Mayo: "Probably not."

AND MORE MAMA CURRAN
Curran: "You know, Mom, I'm not happy with this way this thing went, either. So we're going to end it here, we're going to reconvene next week after the Jets game, and we're going to talk some more, different, football stuff."

Mayo: "And knit a new sweater, Mama Curran, please. So we'll have something to talk about."

Belichick: Patriots have caught up after starting offseason 'five weeks behind'

bill-belichick-patriots-practice-072916.jpg

Belichick: Patriots have caught up after starting offseason 'five weeks behind'

FOXBORO -- After starting the offseason "five weeks behind," as Bill Belichick put it, the Patriots have caught up. 

"I think we’re probably caught up to where we are now," he said before Thursday's OTA practice at Gillette Stadium. "I think it’s being behind in draft, free agency and that type of thing.

"I think at this point, we’re ready for OTAs. We’ll be ready for training camp. I think that part of it we’ll be on schedule on. It’s the catching up on all the spring projects, draft and free agency. It’s the initial part of it."

Belichick made headlines on the morning after winning his fifth Lombardi Trophy with the Patriots when he said, "As of today, and as great as today feels and as great as today is, in all honesty we're five weeks behind in the 2017 season to most teams in the league. Fortunately we have a great personnel staff

"Look, in a couple weeks we're going to be looking at the combine, obviously the draft, all-star games have already occurred, and in a month we're into free agency, not to mention all the internal Patriots players (whose) contracts are up and we're going to have to work with in some form or fashion like every team in the league does."

Leaning on evaluations of players that began in the build-up to previous drafts, Belichick and his staff opted to trade away some of this year's draft capital for veterans like Brandin Cooks, Kony Ealy and Dwayne Allen. They also gave up their fifth-rounder to sign restricted free agent Mike Gillislee.

Before heading out to the team's third practice of the week -- the first week the Patriots were allowed to introduce helmets and run offense versus defense periods -- Belichick said that part of his focus will be spent on finding out how those players he picked up this offseason are progressing.

"Yeah, that’s definitely part of it," he said. "Seeing the new players, how they’re doing and also how they’re doing relevant to the rest of the other players that I’m a little more familiar with. Again, each year is a new year, so even though we’ve seen some of these guys multiple years, it’s still starting all over again, seeing where they are, how they’re progressing in their training and preparation for the season."