Troy Brown elected to Patriots Hall of Fame

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Troy Brown elected to Patriots Hall of Fame

FOXBORO The New England Patriots announced Monday that Troy Brown has been voted by fans as the 18th player and 19th member to enter the Patriots Hall of Fame. The induction ceremony will be held outside The Hall at Patriot Place on Saturday, Sept. 15, the day before the Patriots' 2012 regular season home opener.

In April, a 17-person nomination committee comprised of media, alumni and staff selected three candidates for consideration for the Patriots Hall of Fame. The three finalists were Brown, former free safety Fred Marion (1982-91) and former coach Bill Parcells (1993-96). Fans had five weeks (April 25-May 31) to vote on Patriots.com for the candidate they believed was most deserving of Hall of Fame induction.

Since the new process for induction was instituted in 2007, Brown earned the highest percentage of votes for any candidate, breaking last years record set by Drew Bledsoe. Brown joins Bledsoe as the second player to be selected by the fans into the Patriots Hall of Fame in their first year of eligibility.

Troy Brown will always be special to me, as he was my sweethearts favorite player during his career, said Patriots chairman and CEO Robert Kraft. Clearly, a lot of Patriots fans shared her sentiment and I am proud that we will honor Troy with his induction into the Patriots Hall of Fame this fall.

To me, Troy was the consummate Patriot who always put team goals ahead of personal ones. His height and speed made him a proverbial underdog in a league that always featured taller and faster players. But, his heart and perseverance made him a champion and a fan favorite. The Patriots record books will always show that Troy was one of the greatest receivers and punt returners in franchise history, but Patriots fans know that he was so much more than that. His selfless contributions to the success of the team on offense, defense and special teams made him unique as a player and helped deliver three Super Bowl titles. For 15 years, Troy personified what it meant to be a Patriot, both on and off the field. With his induction into the Patriots Hall of Fame, his legacy will be preserved for generations to come.

Troy Brown is the ultimate team player and one of the greatest competitors I have ever had the privilege of coaching, said Patriots coach Bill Belichick. Offense, defense, special teams if there was a job to do, Troy embraced it and did it at a championship level. No matter the situation or conditions, Troy raised the bar of excellence and helped create a winning tradition we strive to uphold. The bigger the game, the more Troy stepped up. There is no more deserving player of any accolade that comes his way than Troy Brown.

Brown spent his entire 15-season NFL career with the Patriots (1993-2007) after being drafted by the team in the eighth round (198th overall) of the 1993 NFL Draft. The 5-foot-10-inch, 196-pound receiver, punt returner and defensive back retired as the Patriots all-time leading receiver with 557 career receptions and as the teams all-time leading punt returner with 252 career returns. He finished ranked second in team history with 6,366 career receiving yards and was tied for the franchise record with three punt returns for touchdowns.

Brown played in 192 games, placing him fourth on the franchises all-time games played list, and his 15 seasons with the franchise tied Julius Adams for the second-longest tenure in a Patriots uniform behind Steve Grogans franchise-record 16 seasons. Brown was a five-time co-captain for the club (2002-06) and earned Pro Bowl honors in 2001.

The complete list of Patriots Hall of Famers (with their year of induction) is listed below:

Players
John Hannah (1991)
Nick Buoniconti (1992)
Gino Cappelletti (1992)
Bob Dee (1993)
Jim Lee Hunt (1993)
Steve Nelson (1993)
Vito Babe Parilli (1993)
Mike Haynes (1994)
Steve Grogan (1995)
Andre Tippett (1999)
Bruce Armstrong (2001)
Stanley Morgan (2007)
Ben Coates (2008)
Jim Nance (2009)
Sam Cunningham (2010)
Jon Morris (2011)
Drew Bledsoe (2011)

Contributor
William Billy Sullivan (2009)

Curran: In the end, everyone stood because of the game

Curran: In the end, everyone stood because of the game

FOXBORO – The boos and demands to “Stand up!” rained down just as the Star Spangled Banner began. The players on the Patriots sideline who knelt – the ones boos and invective was directed at – stayed down. Others stood, locking arms with teammates while others stood with their hands over their hearts.

By game’s end, everyone was on their feet. Players. Coaches. Fans. Together.

Unless they left early because of traffic and a late Patriots deficit. Or because they couldn’t bear the thought of watching an NFL game on a beautiful September Sunday because the entertainers didn’t do what they wanted them to do before the performance began.

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The whole thing’s complicated. I understand why people take offense at those who don’t stand for the anthem.

I understand why others want to deliver a symbolic message about their American experience.

I completely understand why, two days after President Trump thought it appropriate to use the phrase “son of a bitch” to refer to someone making a silent, reflective statement, many NFL players felt challenged, backed into a corner and somewhat dehumanized. The message delivered was, in essence, “Shut up and dance.”

Personally, I prefer to stick to sports. I don’t think I’m equipped to talk politics because I don’t know policy, legislation, constituencies and special interests – all the things that I define as politics – well enough to drone on at anybody.

As for sociology – which is what this is about rather than politics – I have my experiences and others have theirs. I’m trying to mow my own lawn over here. You do you. I’ll do me. As long as you don’t encroach on me doing me while you do you, I’m fine. When I’m not completely self-absorbed, a respectful exchange of ideas can make me see things in a different light.

It didn’t surprise me some people at Gillette Stadium had a visceral and vocal reaction to players kneeling. The pot was brought to a boil all weekend, the lid was just lifted and it bubbled over.

But the irony of how the afternoon played out – that Brandin Cooks, a player booing fans were screaming at to stand three hours earlier brought them to their feet with his toe-tapping last-minute touchdown – was perfectly symbolic.

Ultimately, everyone was there for the football – the players, coaches, media and fans – and in the end it was the football that brought the unified response that stood in contrast to the divided reactions in the stands and on the field before the game.

“That’s what sports is,” said Patriots safety Devin McCourty. “That’s what sports does. That’s what makes them great. They bring out what we have in common.

“I don’t think people look at us as human,” McCourty said. “I don’t think they ever have. We’re just the entertainment. They don’t understand that there’s a human behind it. People want to shake your hand or have their picture taken with you but they don’t want to know you. That’s reality.”

Maybe. Or maybe people feel their voices aren’t heard. They don’t have a column they can write or a TV or radio show to spout off on. They don’t have the chance to demonstrate their individual feelings at their cubicle before the workday starts.

All they know is they spent $500 or more to get to and into with a belly full of steak tips and beer and they don’t need to feel like being reminded about somebody else’s societal oppression on their day off, thank you very much.

It’s not so much about who does what during the Star Spangled Banner as much as it is that a lot of people don’t appreciate the intrusion. That, and they’re tired of hearing how bad everyone else has it when it’s really no damn picnic for most people these days.

Believe me, there’s not unanimity of opinion in the Patriots locker room any more than there is in your office, home, dorm or neighborhood. Players of different races, backgrounds, economic circumstances and ways of expressing themselves are thrown in a pot together and told to work for a common goal and rely on each other.

The mish-mash of ways in which players responded during the anthem on the Patriots sideline, the reticence of some players to dip a toe in the conversation, McCourty’s opening statement at the podium and then his declining to take questions and Bill Belichick’s comment that he would “deal with that later” all seemed to indicate that the team itself is still working through how it expresses itself as a whole.

It’s complicated for them too.

But in the end, it was the football that bound them together. It was the game that left them jumping on each other and the fans standing and screaming and nobody thinking at all about who did what when the song played before the game.

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SUNDAY NIGHT FOOTBALL: Redskins put it all together in prime time to rout Raiders

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SUNDAY NIGHT FOOTBALL: Redskins put it all together in prime time to rout Raiders

LANDOVER, Md. - Kirk Cousins threw for 365 yards and three touchdowns, Chris Thompson had 188 all-purpose yards and a score and the Washington Redskins sacked Derek Carr four times and held the Oakland Raiders to 128 yards in a dominating 27-10 victory on Sunday night.

Cousins was a spectacular 25 of 30, including TD passes to Thompson, Vernon Davis and a 52-yarder to Josh Doctson. Thompson had 150 yards receiving and 38 yards rushing, joining Jamaal Charles as the only running backs to put up 150 yards receiving against the Raiders (2-1) since they moved to Oakland in 1995.

Thompson was again a difference maker and has four of Washington's seven offensive touchdowns this season. The Redskins (2-1), who piled up 472 yards, improved to 4-6 in prime-time games under coach Jay Gruden and tied the Philadelphia Eagles for first place in the NFC East.

Under pressure all night, Carr was 19 of 31 for 118 yards with a touchdown and two interceptions. Carr had thrown 112 consecutive passes before being picked off by Montae Nicholson on the second play of the game.

Oakland's rushing offense, which came in ranked fifth in the NFL, managed just 32 yards.

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