Why wasn't Welker targeted more in first game


Why wasn't Welker targeted more in first game

Wes Welker puts food on the table by making receptions. He's done it for a while and is one of the best in the NFL at it. But on Sunday, he didn't get many opportunities.

Welker was targeted just five times against the Titans. Is there any reason to make a big deal out of this? Probably not . . . but it's worth noting anyways.

Perhaps it was just a case of the other players being more open. Or . . . the Patriots are sticking it to Welker for not agreeing to that franchise tag sooner! Kidding.

Tom E. Curran and Ron Borges talk about Welker's day.

Belichick avoids calling Jets by name when listing who he's worked for


Belichick avoids calling Jets by name when listing who he's worked for

WHITE SULPHUR SPRINGS, West Virginia -- It wasn't that Bill Belichick forgot. He has a phenomenal memory, which he's dipped into on innumerable occasions during press conferences over the years.

During a back-and-forth with reporters at the Greenbrier before a joint practice with Houston, Belichick was asked about his relationship with Texans assistant head coach Romeo Crennel. When rattling off the names of places where he and Crennel coached together, he left the Jets out of the conversation by choice.

"Well, Romeo and I started together at the Giants in special teams, so he and I coached special teams together and then we coached defensively together through 1990," Belichick began. "We worked at the Patriots together, then another team, and then back with the Patriots in 2001."

"Another team" . . . ? Yup. Both Belichick and Crennel served on the Jets staff from 1997-1999.

We know it didn't end very well between the current Patriots head coach and his now in-division rival 200 miles to the south. And there hasn't been a lot of love lost between the two sides in the years since. Belichick's impressive bit of self-editing mid-answer on Wednesday was just a quick reminder of that.

Wistful Brady admires athletic skills of Texans' Deshaun Watson


Wistful Brady admires athletic skills of Texans' Deshaun Watson

WHITE SULPHUR SPRINGS, West Virginia -- Tom Brady got caught day-dreaming during a portion of his press conference Wednesday at The Greenbrier. Following the second joint practice between the Patriots and Texans, he was asked what he thought of Deshaun Watson's game.

The rookie flashed his athleticism while splitting starter reps with Tom Savage over the two-day stretch of practices with New England, and Brady took notice.

"If I could run a 4.7 [forty-yard dash], man, I would have been the first overall pick," Brady said. "Unfortunately, I ran a 5.2. I wouldn’t have been the first overall pick -- I change that. I probably would’ve been a fourth-rounder.

"I wish I could make some of those plays. Look, every player has strengths and weakness and you learn to play to your strengths, and you learn to develop your weaknesses. I’m still working on those things in my 18th year. I wish I was born 6-foot-5, 240, could run a 4.5, jump 40 inches, bench 415, but you can't. You play to your strengths and I think with our team I’ve been able to learn and think my way through the game.

"I tell the guys all the time -- 'Nothing good happens when I've got the ball in my hands.' So the faster I can get it out of my hands, the better it is, which means we've got to have a lot of trust.

"I think there are a lot of other players in the league like Russell [Wilson] or Aaron [Rodgers] that prove that when the ball is in their hands a lot of great things happen -- Ben Roethlisberger. It's about improving the things that maybe you’re not so good at, which I’m going to keep trying to do and keep building on the things you are good at."

Brady went 13-for-18 against the Texans defense in 11-on-11 work Wednesday, looking much more in sync with his teammates than he did the previous day when Houston's defensive line won the day.

Watson was not quite as accurate, going 9-for-16, though he had two passes dropped. And one of his completions was one of the better completions of the day for either side when he dropped a pass in to Jaelen Strong in the back corner of the end zone during 7-on-7 work.

He may not be a finished product, but Brady liked what he saw. The two had a chance to meet and chat during their shared time in West Virginia, and Watson seemed to make a good impression.

"Watching him play, he's got a great future. He's got all the ability. It was great to meet him," Brady said. "I've watched him have so many great games. Pro football players watch a lot of college players because on Saturday nights we're at the hotel, and Clemson was on a lot. Obviously, they won a lot of big games so it was great to meet him."