Fantasy or Reality: Patriots season expectations

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Fantasy or Reality: Patriots season expectations

Opening day of the Patriots regular season is less than two weeks away, so what better time to make some predictions for key players on this team?

The "Uno Sports Tonight" crew did that Thursday, with Mike Flynn of 98.5 The Sports Hub and the Boston Herald's Steve Buckley stopping by to make some predictions on important questions involving Patriots skill positions.

The first question:  Will Stevan Ridley will surpass 1,300 yards rushing this season?

Flynn was not convinced.

"I got fantasy. I think he has the ability to do, the line to do it, but I think Blount is going to make the team and he's going to take away a lot of those  carries, Bolden will take those carries," Flynn said. "Vereen's your third-down back and they run so many different packages, just when you think you can tell who is the running back, they throw somebody else in there."

The next query moved over to the defensive side of the ball, and pondered the impact Chandler Jones could have in year two.

Following an opening six-sack season cut short by injury, can Jones reach double-digit sacks in his sophomore campaign?

Buckley was emphatic with his answer.

"I think it's a slam-dunk reality because I think he is going to be a great, great player and I believe most of those sacks were early in the season." Buckley said. "So, when you factor in a year's experience and a year's health, I think he gets it."

Finally, the issue of Danny Amendola's health came to the table. 

The former St. Louis Ram has been no stranger to injury and if such ailments pop up again, the Patriots receiving corps could be in deep trouble.

Asked if Amendola can remain on the field for at least 14 games, Flynn would not even commit to that.

"I'm going to say fantasy. You know last couple years, has been injured," Flynn said. "You look at a couple of games, especially his big games, stuff over the middle, he may play 13, I think I'm going to go fantasy."

Do you agree with these takes? Any of these suggestions that you feel differently about? Have your say in the comments section below.

Faulk: Brady thanked me for wearing his jersey at NFL Draft

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Faulk: Brady thanked me for wearing his jersey at NFL Draft

Many -- most? -- of Tom Brady's teammates, and ex-teammates, feel the same as the denizens of Patriots Nation: That the future Hall of Fame quarterback has been unfairly railroaded in the kangaroo court of Roger Goodell and Ted Wells and the NFL.

Unlike the rest, however, Kevin Faulk had the chance to do something about it.

He made an unmistakable statement when, while making one of the Patriots' picks at the recent NFL Draft, he whipped off his jacket and displayed a Patriots jersey adorned with Brady's No. 12. And he punctuated it with a look of total defiance on his face.

Pats fans loved it. And so did a certain quarterback.

Brady called Faulk and, according to the ex-running back, told him: "Thank you for just showing the respect that we had for each other."

"That was all it [was]," Faulk said Tuesday morning on Toucher & Rich. "It wasn't [a] big, drawn-out deal, nothing like that. It was, 'Thank you.' . . .

"We may not talk every day, but whenever we do pick up the phone to call to each other, we can help each other out."

Still, Faulk admitted to nerves prior to the moment, Until . . . 

"[I] went to the green room right before they take you to the stage," he related. "And the girl who took me to the green room, she was a New England Patriots fan. And she was like, 'I love it!' So that just gave me that much more . . . confidence.

"It was like, 'Let's go do this!' "