Big Week Ahead for Patriots

The Patriots enjoyed the weekend off knowing that they have the toughest part of their schedule now behind them. At 3-3, they’re in first place in the AFC East, thanks to the weakness of the division. Michael Felger writes this morning that if the Patriots want to have a chance of returning to the postseason, they’ve got to take advantage of this weak division, starting this Sunday against Buffalo. Jerome Solomon takes a peek at the upcoming schedule, noting that it is now time to turn it for the Patriots should they wish to regain their place of prominence in the league. In many ways, the season begins now for the Patriots.

A few articles from yesterday worth looking at: John Tomase had a feature on Patriots QB coach Josh McDaniels, who many believe is the offensive coordinator in training for the Super Bowl champs. Amalie Benjamin had a look at linebacker/safety Don Davis, who battled back from a low point in 1998 when he nearly ended his own life, to his current position on the Patriots, where he is just as important in the lockerroom as he is on the field. Tom E Curran caught up with former Patriot cornerback Ty Law, now with the Jets, and got his thoughts on many topics, including of course, his departure from the Patriots. Joan Vennochi wrote that Tedy Bruschi might be rolling the dice with his comeback, and giving up the change to end his career on top. Someone should inform Ms. Vennochi that it wasn’t really the talk show callers that were calling Bruschi selfish, it was the highly paid, supposedly informed talk show hosts.

Gordon Edes and Jeff Horrigan report on the White Sox winning game two of the World Series on a walk off home run from Scott Podsednik. Dan Shaughnessy and Steve Buckley (subscription only) both anoint the White Sox as this year’s team of destiny. Chris Snow looks at Brad Lidge again playing the fall guy for the Astros in giving up the game winning homer last night. Horrigan looks at the White Sox continuing to get the breaks. Snow also has a look at Bobby Jenks as the 24 year old rookie is right in the middle of things here in the World Series. Horrigan says that the Astros still hold out hope that Roger Clemens could go in a possible game five. Edes’ notebook has more on Clemens, while Horrigan’s notebook looks at Andy Pettitte making history with his 34th postseason start.

Bob Hohler continues his series on Charity and Sports in Boston, today looking at the Celtics and Bruins efforts to match up with the standards set by the Red Sox and Patriots when it comes to supporting charities. Hohler also looks at how the 2002 sale of the Red Sox was a boon for local charities. Yesterday’s piece by Hohler entitled “Not Giving Their All” suggested that some athletes do not give as much to charity as they either say they will or suggest that they do. He singled out Pedro Martinez and Manny Ramirez as two guilty of this. Hohler noted that Martinez has been “fabulously generous with his personal wealth in his Dominican homeland,” but didn’t hand out as much to the children of Boston as he had promised. Another piece looked at several Boston athletes who have stepped up, including Doug Flutie, Curt Schilling, Mo Vaughn, Cam Neely and Tim Wakefield.

Stop me if you’ve heard this one before: Roger Clemens should end his career where he began it. That’s Lenny Megliola’s theme this morning, and to me it makes zero sense. Clemens is playing near his home, his son is in the Astros organization, there is no way or reason he would come back North. I guess it’s just fun to dream about.

Shira Springer and Steve Bulpett each look at rookie point guard Orien Green, who has been turning heads in camp and the preseason with his heady play, strong defense and crisp passing. If you missed his second quarter fast break bounce pass to Al Jefferson Saturday night against the Nets, you missed something special. Bulpett also looks at Brian Scalabrine as the new Celtics forward continues to find a role for himself with the team Bulpett’s notebook looks at Justin Reed losing playing time on Saturday night because of a wardrobe malfunction. More to the point, he didn’t have his complete wardrobe on, lacking a game jersey. Zach Rocha is looking ahead to the Beijing Olympics, and already his team put together.

From yesterday, Shira Springer has Tony Allen talking about his arrest and situation for the first time. Bulpett also looked at Allen rejoining the team after his arrest. Peter May had his NBA notes, with a look at Allan Houston’s retirement, and suggesting that if Danny Ainge wants to take another run at Robert Swift, now might be a good time. Bill Reynolds weighed in on the NBA dress code.

Stephen Harris looks at the Bruins’ plans to exit the Northeast division cellar. Hohler looks at the Bruins plans to refurbish a rink in Roxbury, a plan that has yet to received state approval for the Bruins charitable foundation to begin the work. Nancy Marrapese-Burrell has Brad Boyes hoping to make some noise against his home town Maple Leafs tonight. Harris’ notebook reports that Mike Sullivan and Ray Bourque have been unable to catch up to be able to talk about Bourque’s possible new role with the organization.

Jim Donaldson has a Monday morning thoughts column, leading off by noting that the day off yesterday certainly came at a good time for the Patriots.

Mike Shalin and Michael Vega each have an early look at the BC basketball team, which begins its first ACC season projected by many to finish second in the conference behind Duke. A big key for the Eagles will be whether Sophomore center Sean Williams is able to return from school suspension in time for play.

Check out the New York Sports News and Bay Area Sports pages for NFL results, World Series coverage and many other topics from the world of sports.

From the weekend, David Scott reported on the depature of long time staffer Marvin Pave from the Globe sports pages.

NESN has Bruins/Maple Leafs at 7:00. ABC has Jets/Falcons at 9:00. OLN has Red Wings/Blue Jackets at 7:00

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