Wilfork: It's a Love fest

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Wilfork: It's a Love fest

FOXBORO -- From his first to his second season as a defensive tackle in the NFL, everything in Kyle Love's game improved: Games played, tackles, sacks.
Now entering his third season, there's another aspect to Love's game that has also improved: leadership.
"He's grown into a hell of a person, not just a player," said Vince Wilfork before Thursday's practice at Gillette Stadium. "It's just good to see guys that come into this league that have the passion and love what they do. And he's one of them.
"Seeing him as a rookie, and now three years on the team. I can't believe it's been three years now, because the way he plays and the way he carries himself. As a veteran and a guy that's been around this game for a long, long time, man, he plays very, very well."
As Wilfork pointed out, he's been in this game a long, long time. And in just two seasons in the league -- both with the Patriots -- Wilfork sees something in Love that you don't always see in such a young player.
"And that's all him, that's all him," said Wilfork. "He's doing the right thing, coming to work, he's on time, he's in the meeting rooms, he's doing everything he can do to be the best person out there on that field.
"And we have a lot of guys like that, but Kyle being in the defensive line room with me, I just see it more, because he's with me almost 247. I've just seen him grown. It's like watching your kids grow up and you're like, 'Man, I can't believe that now you're in the ninth grade?' It's three years in, but it seems like he's been in a lot longer, just because of the maturity level that he carries himself with, and the way he plays. He's definitely one of the leaders around this locker room, being so young. But he has every tool to be one of those leaders. And we know that."

Clayborn beats out Seymour, Vrabel to enter Patriots Hall of Fame

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Clayborn beats out Seymour, Vrabel to enter Patriots Hall of Fame

Raymond Clayborn has been voted into the Patriots Hall of Fame, beating out both Mike Vrabel and Richard Seymour for the honor. The corner, who is tied for the franchise record for interceptions with Ty Law (36), will be the 26th person inducted to the Hall. 

Clayborn was a three-time Pro Bowler (1983, 1985, 1986) during his 13-year Patriots career from 1977 through 1989. He was drafted by the Patriots in the first round (16th overall) out of Texas in 1977, and chipped in both in the secondary and as a kick returner. As a rookie in the return game, he averaged 31 yards per return and brought back three for touchdowns. 

Clayborn reacted to the news on Twitter soon after the announcement was made. 

"I was fortunate to be a season ticket holder during Raymond's entire Patriots career," Patriots Chairman and CEO Robert Kraft said in a statement. "For the first half of his career, he teamed with Michael Haynes to form one of the best corner tandems in league history. Throughout his career, Raymond was a physical, shutdown corner.

"One of my favorite memories was watching the 1985 team advance to the Super Bowl after Raymond helped us break the Orange Bowl curse when he stymied future Hall of Fame quarterback Dan Marino with a dominant performance against Pro Bowl receivers Mark Duper and Mark Clayton. Raymond had six passes defensed and an interception to help us claim our first conference title. It was the greatest upset victory in franchise history at the time and one the entire New England region celebrated. It is a well-deserved honor and I look forward to presenting him his hall of fame jacket."

Clayborn has been a finalist for each of the last four years but was not able to generate enough support in the annual online vote to beat out Ty Law (2014 inductee), Willie McGinest (2015) or Kevin Faulk (2016). Clayborn was eligible to be voted in by the senior committee since he's now been retired for 25 years, but he did not receive the requisite eight of 10 senior committee votes to be elected in that way. 

As it turns out, he didn't need to be. When Kraft called Clayborn with the news, he said Clayborn received over 40 percent of the vote to beat out the pair of three-time Super Bowl champs. 

Kyle Shanahan: One play I regret in Falcons' collapse vs. Patriots

Kyle Shanahan: One play I regret in Falcons' collapse vs. Patriots


Remember that Atlanta Falcons offensive game plan against the Patriots in the final five minutes of the Super Bowl?

Kyle Shanahan, then the Falcons offensive coordinator and now coach of the San Francisco 49ers won't forget it. If Atlanta had simply run the ball and kicked a field goal with an eight-point lead, the Falcons would have likely held off Tom Brady and the Pats' comeback from a 28-3 third-quarter deficit.

Shanahan told The Rich Eisen Show there's one play call he'd like to have back. 

"The second-and-10 that we got sacked on,” Shanahan said. “I wish I had dialed up something differently. And then the next play, we called an option to [Mohamed] Sanu, we got right back in field goal range, but we had a holding call on the play and it knocked us out some more, and an incompletion on the next one.”

Click here for the play: Patriots defensive lineman Trey Flowers sacked Matt Ryan for a 12-yard loss. 

"I go through every single play in the game, but when it comes down to it, the big one was the sack that we had on second-and-10,” Shanahan told Eisen. 

Shanahan probably won't see the Patriots again this season, unless it's in the Super Bowl. And with the 49ers rebuilding under him, that's not likely to happen.