Mallett working toward leading team someday

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Mallett working toward leading team someday

We don't hear from Ryan Mallet often. In the NFL world, interview requests have a direct correlation with on-field contributions; you can imagine what that means for the backup to Tom Brady's backup.

But Mallet recently had a quality conversation with Chris Bahn of ArkansasSports360.com. The former Razorback QB spoke to Bahn (via phone, while golfing) about Mallett's opinion on Patriots head coach Bill Belichick, his aspirations as a starter, and that arm of his.

Here's part of the transcript.

Chris Bahn: As a guy that wants to be a coach, is there a better person to be around than Bill Belichick?
Ryan Mallett: Man, I love Coach. Hes really honest and thats the best part about it. Being part of one of his teams is an honor and a privilege. He tells you every day, "Do your job. Do your job." If everybody does his job, were successful. We did our jobs enough that it got us to the Super Bowl. We didnt finish it last year, but hopefully well get a chance to finish it this year.

CB: I know how competitive you are. Youd have liked it to be you leading the team to a Super Bowl or making the Pro Bowl as a rookie. But was this the best-case scenario for your situation as a back-up?
RM: Anytime you get to the Super Bowl is nice. There are guys who have been in the league 16 years and never done it. I didnt play a snap, but I can say I got to go. One day, hopefully Ill get a chance to go back. Thats what Im working towards now. Getting there was awesome, but the feeling of losing in the biggest game in the world is awful. Its the game everybody works toward. I'm working toward getting back there, leading a team there someday.

CB: So this just whetted your appetite? Sort of the appetizer before a big meal?
RM: Sort of like that. Look, if I had went out there and, you know, had a Cam Newton year, I wouldnt have got complacent, but I probably wouldnt have been working as hard as Ive been working. Not that it would have been easy, but it would have been different. I'm working hard.

CB: So is the arm even stronger now? Has your velocity improved? That was the talk after you threw to Jarius Wright and those guys at Pro Day.
RM: I dont know if its stronger. People that dont see me every day, there is probably a little bit of an awe factor. Like Ive told you before, thats not the only thing I want to be known for. My knowledge of the game, my knowledge of defenses is what I want to go down for. I want to be a player that goes to multiple Super Bowls. I want to be known as a leader.
People dont understand I know the game. Its what I do. As a quarterback you have to know the game. Well, not all of them do laughing, but I know the game. And I'm learning more all the time.

CB: So it's safe to say you're more comfortable now? Do you feel more confident entering this season?
RM: I feel more confident with the playbook. Ive always felt good about my abilities laughing. This has been my life. Football is what I do. But, to me, its like the jump from year one to year two at Arkansas. Once I get it down, I feel so much more comfortable and so much more ready to go. ... We get to jump right into it and I cant wait.

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.