Patriots coordinators to use bye week to self-evaluate


Patriots coordinators to use bye week to self-evaluate

Now that the Patriots are onto their bye week, it comes time for some self-scouting, prior to their Week 10 game against the Buffalo Bills.

Whether it's building on the things that New England is doing well, or fixing some of the team's biggest issues, the Patriots coaching staff will be hard at work to point those things out before they game plan for their next opponent.

"I think there's a lot of different ways you could certainly go, in a bye week. One of the things that anybody will try to do -- and we certainly try to do the best we can at it -- is to identify areas that you need to make some progress in or make some improvements in, or at least make your players aware of some things that we need to try to be better at," said Patriots offensive coordinator Josh MacDaniels in a conference call on Tuesday.

So while self-scouting is already in place, the Patriots coaching staff will be sure to not pile on, when the players return to the facilities on Thursday. There's just not enough time to go over everything.

"You can't hit everything in a bye week, it's too short, in terms of the time that you have with the players," said McDaniels. "But we can find a few things that we feel like can make a difference for us in some area of our game. And that's definitely something that you try to get done.

"I think if you try to tackle 100 things, you probably don't get anything accomplished. So we're in the process now of trying to look back over the first half of the season, and maybe, even more specifically, the last so many games here, and try to focus on some things that we think could make us better, heading into the last eight games."

Defensive coordinator Matt Patricia joined Tuesday's conference call after McDaniels, and he agreed with giving his team a "smaller scope" of the biggest issues at hand, following their self-scouting.

"Obviously that's a big part of this week for us, certainly, is to take a look at everything that we're doing, and obviously try to see some areas where we can improve, and hopefully find some areas where we're doing some things that are also okay and good, and things that we can build off of," said Patricia. "So, we'll certainly take a look at that as well."

Bruins don't extend qualifying offer to Joe Morrow

Bruins don't extend qualifying offer to Joe Morrow

With free agency just around the corner, the Bruins have officially cut ties with former first-round pick and last bastion of the Tyler Seguin trade, Joe Morrow.

The 24-year-old Edmonton native arrived in Boston along with Loui Eriksson, Reilly Smith and Matt Fraser in exchange for Seguin when he was shipped to Dallas, and now all of those players have moved on from Boston as well. Boston does still carry Jimmy Hayes on their roster, a player traded from Florida in exchange for Smith, as a last remnant of the Seguin deal, but it isn't expected to be too long before Hayes moves on from Boston as well.  

The B’s announced on Monday afternoon that they hadn’t extended a qualifying offer to Morrow, as well as P-Bruins power forward Colton Hargrove, as a restricted free agent, and that both B’s youngsters were now free to sign with any of the 30 NHL teams as free agents.

The Bruins extended qualifying offers to restricted free agents in Noel Acciari, Linus Arnesson, Austin Czarnik, Zane McIntyre, David Pastrnak, Tim Schaller, Ryan Spooner and Malcolm Subban, and will retain the associated team rights with all of those players. Negotiations are ongoing between the Bruins and Pastrnak continue over a long term deal that would put him in the same $6 million plus per season level as teammate Brad Marchand, but one source with knowledge of the negotiations indicated it’s “not close” to being a done deal.

Some RFA’s like Spooner and Subban might not necessarily fit into the long term plan for the Black and Gold, but they need to maintain their rights if they hope to trade them as valued assets down the line.

Morrow never put together the talent that made him a former first-round pick while he was in Boston, and totaled just one assist in 17 games for the B’s before playing well in five playoff games after getting pushed into duty due to injuries. In all Morrow finished with two goals and nine points along with a minus-8 rating in 65 games over three seasons in Boston, but could never string together an extended run of consistent play at the NHL level.

With the Bruins in the market to bring on another left-shot defenseman into the Boston fold this summer, it was pretty clear that the time had come to move on from Morrow while allowing him to potentially develop as an NHL D-man elsewhere. 

Tom Brady claims No. 1 spot on NFL's top 100 list

Tom Brady claims No. 1 spot on NFL's top 100 list

The NFL Network revealed the final 10 players on its annual Top 100 list Monday night and Patriots quarterback Tom Brady finished in the No. 1 spot.

On, the Top 100 list is described as the answer to the question, "Who are the top 100 players in the NFL today?" If that's the criteria -- and not simply performance in 2016 -- then Watt's complaint actually doesn't hold much water. If he's healthy, no one would argue that he's one of the best 35 players "in the NFL today."

Several Patriots players made the cut on this year's list: Rob Gronkowski (No. 23), LeGarrette Blount (No. 80), Julian Edelman (No. 71), Dont'a Hightower (No. 94) and Malcolm Butler (No. 99). 

Brady was also voted in as the No. 1 player back in 2011.