Patriots notes: Welker would like to hear more from fans, too


Patriots notes: Welker would like to hear more from fans, too

By Rich Levine

FOXBORO Wes Welker wasn't quite as adamant as Tom Brady in expressing his disappointed with fans leaving early during Sunday's win over Cincinnati. Perhaps some of that has to do with the fact that Welker wasn't here to experience the true glory years at Gillette, and doesn't really have anything to compare it to. But either way, Welker did hint that he's like to see a little more from the New England faithful when the team returns home Sept. 26.

"I think I would like to see our crowd get into it a little more, and really become almost like that 12th man," he said. "But at the same time we're gonna go out there and give them something to cheer for."

Julian Edelman might only be in his second season with the Pats, but he's wasted no time becoming well-versed in the Patriot Way. Speaking with reporters in the middle of the locker room, Edelman was asked to expand his recovery from an injured ankle. The response?

"I don't even think I'm allowed to talk about injuries. I don't want to get in trouble."

There are only so many words to describe the ridiculous trash-talking nature of the New York Jets. Fred Taylor, for one, has run out of, or just isn't bothered enough to think of any, ways to explain their loud-mouthed mentality.

"Anytime you have an opportunity to compete, you want to do your best, he said. "It's a little bit added incentive when there's a team, that . . . you know what the Jets are. I just don't know how to describe it. You pay attention to it and you remain humble and just play on the field."

I caught one funny interaction between Randy Moss and Tom Brady as the two sat side-by-side at their lockers. Moss was explaining that, being from West Virginia, he didn't grow up really rooting for an NFL team of his own. He said that they used to get Redskins and Steelers games on TV, but that he never really developed an allegiance. "How weird would it be if I was in this league and was a fan of like . . . the Cleveland Browns?" he asked. Before looking over at Brady and jokingly saying: "Unlike this endearing expletive and his Niners . . . "

"That's right," Brady said. "San Fran!"

Rich Levine's column runs each Monday, Wednesday and Friday on Rich can be reached at Follow Rich on Twitter at http:twitter.comrlevine33

Butler imitates Brown with post-interception dance: 'Nothing personal'


Butler imitates Brown with post-interception dance: 'Nothing personal'

Malcolm Butler didn't mean any disrespect. After all, imitation is the sincerest form of flattery. 


When the Patriots corner picked off a Landry Jones pass in the first quarter -- one that was intended for receiver Antonio Brown -- Butler stood up in the end zone, faced the Heinz Field crowd, stuck one arm in the air a and gyrated like someone had attached jumper cables to his facemask. 

He was doing his best to mimick one of Brown's well-known touchdown dances.

"Me and Brown had conversation before," Butler said, "and it was a joke to him once I showed him how I do it. Much love for that guy. Nothing personal."

For Butler, it was the highlight of what was a productive afternoon. The third-year corner was asked to shadow Brown for much of the day, and he allowed Brown to catch five of nine targets for 94 yards. He also broke up a pair of passes intended for Brown's teammates.

“Stopping Antonio Brown, that’s impossible," Butler said. "You can’t stop him. You can only slow him down. I just went out there and tried to compete today . . . Great players are going to make plays but you have to match their intensity.”
Even on the longest throw from backup quarterback Landry Jones to Brown, a 51-yarder, it appeared as though Butler played the coverage called correctly. 

Butler lined up across from Brown and trailed him underneath as Brown worked his jway from the left side of the field to the right. Butler was looking for some help over the top in that scenario, seemingly, but because Brown ran across the formation, it was hard for the back end of the defense to figure out who would be helping Butler. 

Belichick admitted as much after the game. 

"He was on [Brown] a lot the way we set it up," Belichick said. "Look, they've got great players. They're tough to cover. They hit us on a couple over routes, in cut where they kind of ran away from the coverage that we had. 

"The plays were well designed. Good scheme, good thorws and obviously good routes by Brown. They got us on a couple, but I thought we competed hard. We battled all the way. We battled on third down. We battled in the red area. They made some. We made some, but they're good. They have a lot of good players."

And Brown, in particular, is about as close as it gets to unstoppable in the NFL. Butler found that out in Week 1 of last year when he matched up with Brown in his first game as a starter, giving up nine catches for 133 yards to the All-Pro wideout. 

Though Sunday might not have been perfect for Butler, it was better than that day about 14 months ago. And at times, it was worth dancing about. 

SUNDAY NIGHT FOOTBALL: Seahawks, Cardinals miss OT FGs, tie 6-6


SUNDAY NIGHT FOOTBALL: Seahawks, Cardinals miss OT FGs, tie 6-6

GLENDALE, Ariz. (AP) Seattle's Stephen Hauschka and Arizona's Chandler Catanzaro missed short field goals that would have won the game in overtime and the Seahawks and Cardinals settled for a 6-6 tie Sunday night.

Hauschka's 27-yard field goal was wide left with seven seconds left after Catanzaro's 24-yarder bounced off the left upright.

The tie was the Cardinals' first since Dec. 7, 1986, a 10-10 draw at Philadelphia when the franchise was based in St. Louis. It was the first for the Seattle since entering the NFL in 1976.

Click here for the complete story