Ocho: 'Belichick would allow me to be myself'

Ocho: 'Belichick would allow me to be myself'

By TomE. Curran

DALLAS - If Chad Ochocinco ever did play for the Patriots - and that's a titanic "if" - he believes Bill Belichick would let him continue to be the same outrageous, entertaining, real-life cartoon he's turned himself into. "(Belichick) knows if have a different style," Ochocinco said Tuesday during the closing moments of Super Bowl Media Day. "He also knows when it's time to play the game, I'm down to business. He knows that. Now my style is completely different than those others and he knows that."Despite Belichick knowing that, did he believe Belichick would attempt to rein him in and make him more Chad than Ocho?"I think he would allow me to be myself because when I'm allowed to be myself I'm at my best," he professed.
So far this offseason, Ocho's tenuous relationship with head coach Marvin Lewis has fractured further. Last week, he also swiped at Bengals owner Mike Brown, insinuating on Twitter that the employees in Cincinnati care more than the business owner about success. Ocho tried to cover his tracks on that front with his answer to my first question about Belichick. "We're very fond of each other," Ocho said of Belichick. "I have respect for him. It's out of my control. I have the utmost respect for Mike Brown and the organization. They are the ones that gave me my chance. They're the ones that gave me the chance to be in the NFL and wear those stripes. "While I'm under contract, I don't want to rub anyone the wrong way but I do have tremendous respect for Bill," Ocho added. "Not just him but everyone I've come into contact with or had the opportunity to speak to on a personal level. That's why we have such a fond respect for each other. Bill and I had a chance to meet in Hawaii. We had conversations that had nothing to do with football which is why our relationship is at the point it is now. People don't even understand."Probably not. ButOcho's constant flirtations - amusing and news foddery as they may be - are eventually going to get somebody's wrist slapped.Tom E. Curran canbe reached at tcurran@comcastsportsnet.com.Follow Tom on Twitter at http:twitter.comtomecurran

Belichick: Brady-less Patriots ‘just really focused on Buffalo’

Belichick: Brady-less Patriots ‘just really focused on Buffalo’

FOXBORO -  A verrrrrryyyy long time ago, the Patriots targeted September. There were t-shirts and everything printed back in 2002 as the Patriots came off of their first Super Bowl title.

The names of that season’s first four opponents – Steelers, Jets, Chiefs and Chargers – were all listed on a bullseye.

How’d that work out? Well, they hit the bullseye for most of September, winning the first three. Then they lost four in a row and the notion of “targeting” a segment of the schedule around these parts went the way of the Dodo bird.

Which may be why, as truly remarkable as this September’s been, Bill Belichick isn’t taking any bows after three damn wins.

“We’re just really focused on Buffalo,” Belichick told me Friday morning when I asked about whether winning the first three in the face of some adversity was a point of pride. “I don’t really care about last week. I don’t really care about two weeks ago. I don’t really care about last year. I don’t really care about four years ago. I don’t really care. I think we’re just trying to get ready and compete against Buffalo. That’s our challenge this week.

“The rest of it – it’s in the books. It is what it is,” he said. “So write whatever you want to write about it. It’s good, it’s bad, I mean I don’t really care. It’s done. We’ve got to do a good job of what we have here with Buffalo. We can’t live in the past. And I respect where you’re coming from, I really do. It’s not like I’m trying to be dismissive of it, but I really don’t care. It doesn’t really matter. Nothing that happened last year, last week, last month really has anything to do with this week.”

Things change after Sunday. The best player the franchise has ever had rejoins a team that – in spite of the adversity – flourished without him. Even though the competition wasn’t what one would call “stiff” compared to challenges Brady faced as recently as last January, it’s still remarkable.

Asked about Brady’s looming return, wide receiver Julian Edelman also redirected.

“We got a game before that,” he pointed out. “When he comes back we'll obviously be happy but we got a job ahead of us with the Buffalo Bills.” 

Asked if there’s some pride taken in the beginning, Edelman replied, “It’s just having pride in your job in general. Really just focusing every week and trying to improve. I say it every week on these cameras, if you try to get better and you get better every week, you're gonna do these things. 

“It tells you that you have a mentally tough team that goes out there and works hard and prepares hard and does the extra things,” Edelman added. “I've been around here a little while and that's just the mentality we've always had and continue to have. We have a tough one against the Bills and we'll see how it tests out against these guys.”



Patriots-Bills injury report: Garoppolo, Brissett listed as questionable


Patriots-Bills injury report: Garoppolo, Brissett listed as questionable

The inury report for Sunday's Patriots-Bills game:


QB Jacoby Brissett (right thumb)
OT Marcus Cannon (calf)
G Jonathan Cooper (foot)
LB Jonathan Freeny (shoulder)
QB Jimmy Garoppolo (shoulder)
TE Rob Gronkowski (hamstring)
LB Dont'a Hightower (knee)
CB Eric Rowe (ankle)


OL Cyrus Kouandjio (ankle)
OL Patrick Lewis (knee)
WR Greg Salas (groin)
WR Sammy Watkins (foot)

DB Colt Anderson (foot)
TE Charles Clay (knee)
DB Ronald Darby (hamstring)
OL Cordy Glenn (ankle)
QB Cardale Jones (right shoulder)
DB Jonathan Meeks (foot)
DB Aaron Williams (ankle)