Patriots' Morris back in the saddle

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Patriots' Morris back in the saddle

By Tom E. Curran
CSNNE.com Patriots Insider Follow @tomecurran
The Patriots have agreed to terms with veteran running back Sammy Morris. Wow. What a frenzy. While much ofthe post-lockout NFL is going batcrap crazy trying to fill their rosters and get squatter's rights on prized free agents, Patriots head coach Bill Belichick has been channeling Bill Slowsky. Wednesday afternoon, news of their first free agent acquisition was broken by Mark Slough, agent for Sammy Morris. He tweeted that Morris is returning to the team. Blink. Blink. The 34-year-old Morris is now almost a full-time special teamer. He's carried 93 times over the past two seasons and started five of the 28 games he's played. How does this impact the running back depth chart? Not too profoundly. The lead back is BenJarvus Green-Ellis, the changeup back is Danny Woodhead. Rookie Shane Vereen becomes a hybrid of the two who can fill either role and rookie Stevan Ridley is more of a between-the-tackles guy. Thomas Clayton is a down-the-roster guy trying to establish a role. Morris probably doesn't supplant anybody and, just because he's re-signed, that likely doesn't guarantee him a spot. Why keep a 34-year-old special teamer - no matter how professional he is - and let a young guy get away by trying to put him on the practice squad?No news yet on Kevin Faulk, who is also a free agent.
Tom E. Curran can be reached at tcurran@comcastsportsnet.com. Follow Tom on Twitter at http:twitter.comtomecurran.

Quick Slants Podcast: Antonio Brown’s betrayal; Matt Light; eyeing up Pittsburgh

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Quick Slants Podcast: Antonio Brown’s betrayal; Matt Light; eyeing up Pittsburgh

Tom E. Curran and Phil Perry discuss the aftermath of Antonio Brown’s Facebook Live video. Curran interview Matt Light ahead of the AFC Championship. They dissect the press conferences of Tom Brady and Bill Belichick, and look at how to beat the Steelers.

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2:29 Antonio Brown’s Facebook Live aftermath

13:14 Stopping Le’Veon Bell

27:16 heywassyonumba? with Patrick Chung and Kyle Van Noy

32:30 Injury report updates for AFC Championship

36:51 Brady and Belichick’s press conferences

44:50 Matt Light interview

Belichick asked if playing at home helps: 'Go ask Dallas and Kansas City'

Belichick asked if playing at home helps: 'Go ask Dallas and Kansas City'

FOXBORO -- Bill Belichick knows that how you play, not where, is what matters most. 

That's why when he was asked on Wednesday about the advantage the Patriots will have by playing at Gillette Stadium in the AFC title game, he wasn't willing to go all-in on how a comfortable environment will positively impact his team.

"I don’t know," he said. "Go ask Dallas and Kansas City."

The Patriots apparently thought enough of home-field advantage that they played their starters throughout their regular-season finale win in Miami, exposing their best players to potential injury in order to maintain their positive momentum while simultaneously ensuring a better road to the Super Bowl. 

The Patriots fans in attendance on Sunday will help when the Patriots take on the Steelers, Belichick acknowledged. But there's much more to it than that. 

"Yeah, of course," he said, "but the game is won by the players on the field. That’s who wins football games – the players. And they’ll decide it Sunday night."

And if you needed any further proof, just ask the Cowboys and Chiefs how helpful their home crowds were in the Divisional Round.