November 11th, 2011
Patriots-Browns matchup of the day: Wednesday
Here's a closer look at a matchup to watch in Sunday's Patriots-Browns game:
Patriots special teams vs. Browns special teams
If you appreciate good special-teams play, this game is for you.
Both teams have outstanding kickoff returners. The Patriots' Brandon Tate (28.9 avg., two TDs) has had a better season than counterpart Joshua Cribbs, but Cribbs has returned more kickoffs for touchdowns than any other player in history UGG Classic Tall Støvler 5815, and he has forced some teams to alter their kickoff strategies. The Patriots' kickoff-coverage unit is surrendering six yards per return more than Cleveland (24.6 vs. 18.6).
Patriots PK Stephen Gostkowski has a strong leg and averages 68.6 yards on kickoffs with 15 touchbacks. He's 10-of-13 on field goals this season. Browns PK Phil Dawson has connected on 9-of-11 field goals. He averages 64.5 yards on his kickoffs (four touchbacks).
The Patriots and Browns have been very good covering punts ugg hjemmesko, particularly Cleveland, which is allowing a paltry 3.5 yards per return. Cribbs handles punt returns for Cleveland, with Julian Edelman and Wes Welker fielding punts for New England.
Cribbs eports- Brady in car ac, Edelman and Welker can't expect to get too many enticing punt-return opportunities. Patriots rookie P Zoltan Mesko has made a sharp early impression. He's second in the AFC in net punting (40.6-yard average) Brady's 517 yards lead Pats past Dolphins_18, and only 10 of his 25 punts have been returned. Browns P Reggie Hodges (40.2-yard net average) has had an NFL-high nine punts downed inside the 10.
Browns assistant head coach/special-teams coordinator Brad Seely, who spent 10 seasons as New England's special-teams coach before joining Cleveland in 2009, has done an exceptional job this season. The Browns set up field goals with a cross-field Cribbs-to-Eric Wright lateral on a punt return and a 68-yard Hodges run— an NFL record by a punter— in their upset of the Saints two weeks ago. Likewise ugg støvler udsalg, Patriots special-teams coach Scott O'Brien has drawn raves, too, most notably for the Pats' kicking-game tour de force in a decisive win at Miami in Week Four. Tate returned a kickoff for a touchdown, and S Patrick Chung blocked a punt and field goal, with the latter returned for a TD.
Reports: Brady in car accident atriots to sign fill-in, shaken up but not injured
Patriots QB Tom Brady was involved in a car accident early Thursday morning, as first reported by WEEI Radio in Boston. Brady was shaken up, but refused medical attention and he continued to practice at Gillette Stadium. The Patriots announced that Brady was not hospitalized and is expected at practice.
The accident involved a sedan driven by Brady and a passenger van at the intersection of Commonwealth Avenue and Gloucester Street. Boston Fire Department spokesman Steve MacDonald told reporters that the driver of the sedan was able to get out and walked around after the crash. A man was stuck in the passenger van and had to be freed using the Jaws of Life.
One person was transported to the hospital. Brady's Audi was seen being towed, but he did leave for Patriots practice.
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Packers-Patriots Thursday injury report
Three Packers players went from practicing on a limited basis Wednesday to fully practicing on Thursday, according to the official Thursday injury report for the Packers-Patriots Week 15 game at Foxborough. The three players were starting OLT Chad Clifton (knees) ugg hjemmesko, starting ORG Josh Sitton (knee) and reserve CB Pat Lee (ankle).
In other changes from the Wednesday practice Discount 2011 All Star Clippers 32 Griffin red jerseys For Sale, two Green Bay players — starting LCB Charles Woodson (toe/ankle) and S Anthony Smith (ankle) — went from fully participating on Wednesday to practicing on a limited basis Thursday UGG Classic Tall Støvler 5815, while starting OLG Daryn Colledge (knee) participated on a limited basis Thursday after not practicing on Wednesday.
Patriots to sign fill-in kicker
WR Wes Welker did a solid job pinch-kicking for the Patriots in Week Nine, but according to CSN New England ugg støvler i danmark, the team plans on signing a placekicker this week to fill in for the injured Stephen Gostkowski.
Gostkowski hurt his quad in the team's Week Nine loss to the Browns and may miss a couple of weeks. He has rebounded from a slow start to make 10-of-13 field-goal attempts the season and all 26 of his point-after tries.
The way we see it
There are a few solid kickers on the market ugg hjemmesko Patriots CB Butler's starting job may be in je, such as Shayne Graham and Shaun Suisham UGG Classic Tall Støvler 5815 ackers-Patriots Thursda, so expect the team to sign one — possibly Graham, who has extensive experience kicking in Heinz Field from his yeasr with the Bengals — before the huge Week 10 matchup with the Steelers at Pittsburgh Sunday night.
Three-and-out with Patriots radio color commentator Gino Cappelletti
Each week we'll talk to former Patriots star and current broadcaster Gino Cappelletti. This week, Gino talked about how teams are defending the Patriots' passing game and how to attack the Steelers' defense.
PFW: What are teams doing to take away the Patriots' passing game?
Cappelletti: I've noticed a lot of center-fielder types of pass defenses where one guy will help out with the long passes by floating left to right UGG Classic Tall Støvler 5815, and then helping out that cornerback once he sees where the quarterback throws the ball. He is playing so deep that he has time to get over to the side once he sees where the quarterback is throwing. It looks like they're doubling up, but he's just reading the quarterback and going to where the ball goes. If he sees the quarterback winding up to throw Discount 2011 All Star Clippers 32 Griffin red jerseys For Sale, he's hightailing it. Also, everybody is concentrating on that underneath stuff because you can pick away at that. A lot of pick plays are taking place, and that's how guys are getting open now.
PFW: How do the Patriots attack the Steelers' defense considering how good Pittsburgh is against the run?
Cappelletti: You've got to keep a balance. (The Steelers) are vulnerable in the passing game and are giving up a lot of yards, but their rushing defense is No. 1 Discount New York Giants 91 Tuck red kids Jerseys For Sale, allowing way under 100 yards rushing a game. You need to pick away at their strengths and then take advantage of any good runs or any good run plays that (the Pats) execute, and then be able to run a play-action off that. I think (the Pats) have to still try to have some semblance of balance in their passing and rushing. People say if you look at their rushing yards you usually find a winner, but that doesn't always work out. They say if you outrun your opponent, you will most likely win the game, but that's not really a true statement.
PFW: What can be done to fix the Patriots' defense after last week's loss to the Browns?
Cappelletti: They are still developing. It's a young defense — if it's not rookies ugg støvler udsalg, it's second-year guys. Normally ugg hjemmesko, it takes a few years — look at Pittsburgh's run defense or their linebackers, they have been intact for a while and they have the experience. The Patriots have to go through that particular time now until the guys that are playing there will stay there. They need that time to develop that continuity among each other.