Patriots fall to Eagles as many starters sit, Red Sox still in news on off day

Playing the first of three games in an 11-day span Bill Belichick decided to rest many of the Patriots starters, including Tom Brady, Wes Welker, Rob Gronkowski, Jerod Mayo, Vince Wilfork and many more. The end result was a 27-17 loss to the Eagles on Monday Night Football in an ugly, sloppy game. The Eagles played their starters into the third quarter where at that point they were going against the second and third string Patriots defense.

The big story coming out of the game was Michael Vick being injured on his sixth play of the game. The quarterback injured his ribs after taking a hit from Jermaine Cunningham. X-rays were negative, but he did not return. Patriots safety Patrick Chung was also injured, reportedly injuring his shoulder, but it isn’t very serious.

Patriots defense answers few questions against Eagles- Chris Gasper (subscription required) says with a lot of the starters being held out it is difficult to see how well the defense really is after they have stood out in practice.

Given a second chance, Vereen carries himself well- Greg A. Bedard says with last night’s performance Shane Vereen is now challenging Stevan Ridley for the lead running back position.

Mallett makes impact- Karen Guregian looks at quarterback Ryan Mallett’s night.

Bill Belichick has it all under control- Mike Reiss says not to worry about not seeing many Patriot starters, Belichick has a plan with the demanding schedule the next week to ten days.

Cannon, Solder struggle again- Tom E. Curran looks at two players, Marcus Cannon and Nate Solder who struggled once again on Monday. The offensive line still remains a cause for concern.

Patriots’ Hightower learns through play-calling- Mary Paoletti has rookie Dont’a Hightower calling the defense plays Monday night, which allowed him to learn even more about the Patriots defense.

Ten things we learned from Monday: Protection remains a problem for Patriots- Christopher Price has ten things that we learned coming out of Monday night’s game.

Although the Red Sox were off on Monday they were still in the news as it became official that Carl Crawford will have Tommy John Surgery on Thursday and the team fired pitching coach Bob McClure, naming Randy Niemann the pitching coach for the remainder of the season. Niemann has been with the time the entire season, he just has not been in the dugout per MLB rules.

The firing of McClure this late in the season is a bit odd to me. In a way it is almost like the Red Sox are backing Valentine, going with “his guy” in Niemann. Could the team still be considering bringing Valentine back for next season? This would be the first move that would suggest that.

Red Sox GM knows bigger fixes needed- Scott Lauber says Ben Cherington knows more decisions like the firing of McClure will need to be made for the Red Sox to get back to where they need to be.

Red Sox fire pitching coach Bob McClure- Sean McAdam looks at the Red Sox’ decision to fire their pitching coach.

Bob McClure just couldn’t last- Gordon Edes says there have been hints all season long of the disconnect between Valentine and McClure so it was only a matter of time before he was let go.

  • http://twitter.com/DryHeave1 DryHeave

    as far as Pats resting starters no, “this is CONSUMER FRAUD” columns? athough Bedard did tweet this>

    Greg A. Bedard ‏ too bad CBS isn’t broadcasting this game. Tom Brady would be playing

    Greg A. Bedard ‏@GordoB57 oh, I was serious. CBS is family here

    Being a former season ticket holder I agree charging full price for preseason is a ripoff but blame for that should be directed at NFL…I don’t blame Pats for not playing starters. Coach should run team as he sees fit…..and tend to doubt BB runs team based on what network is broadcasting game. These guys see conspiracies everywhere.

  • latetodinner

    Because of time constraints I did not get to see any of week 2 preseason games other than the Pats game last night. I was watching the officiating because of the late Monday story floating the idea of officiating the games from NY and using an official just to mark down and distance. I said it last week and I say it again this week…the officials were not the story at least in the Pats game. The pace of the game was not bad, the calls were all pretty right…did they miss some…sure…the holding on play on the Tight End (maybe Silvestro) during the first field goal drive was probably the most obvious…but all in all the officials were fine. If the NFL could augment on field replacement refs with guys back in NY officiating in real time by film then the NFLRA has a huge problem because no one is going to miss them. If the technology exists so that reviews can be done remotely without having to have the ref trot over to the camera and slow down the game then even if the real refs come back I say go with the new system. It will make the games flow better. The NHL does it without issues. I truly expected to wake up to lots of fake ref stories and the fact that there are none speaks volumes to how eminently replaceable the refs are.

    • http://twitter.com/DryHeave1 DryHeave

      FROM MIKE REISS:
      1. Bill Belichick was furious on the sideline after the replacement officials didn’t give him the option to accept an offside penalty on a point-after-attempt following the team’s second-quarter touchdown. He had to run down the sideline and yell to referee Jerry Frump that it wasn’t an automatic enforecement on the ensuing kickoff, that he had the option to accept the penalty at that moment (which he did, deciding to work on a 2-point conversion). This is what has to frustrate coaches like Belichick the most when it comes to replacement officials — the coaches have enough to worry about with their own teams, they don’t need to coach the officials too.

      Bottomline, no matter their performance the replacements will always be looked upon as 2nd rate and it’s a cloud that will hang over NFL as long as regular reffs are out. There might not have been alot of “fake reff” stories after last nights game, but there will be if it lingers into regular season.

      • latetodinner

        I agree there will be stories. Where we disagree is that it effected the quality of the game we watched. I have watched Bill Belichick be furious with regular refs on multiple occasions over the last 10 years. People make mistakes. The issue is was the quality of the reffing bad enough that it will force the NFL to cave…not at all and that should scare the dickens out of the real refs.
        Kent

    • Winning_Again

      Speak for yourself LTD, I will miss Ed Hocule more than anything. I enjoy his summaries about “There is no flag for holding, the defender was simply overpowered.”

      • bsmfan

        Let me know if this instils confidence in you that replacement refs are ready for regular season games:

        http://deadspin.com/5936607/nothing-better-illustrates-the-futility-of-replacement-refs-than-this-video-of-one-being-hit-by-a-football

        I’d rather Ed Hochuli going into a loquacious reading of a flag/penalty, showing off his guns, than outright getting a call wrong.

        Again, thankfully the media has been all over this. I think there was a former ref on WEEI, if im recalling this correctly, who said the Week 3 games starting Thursday will be the giant barometer if the league will cave in. I really hope it is because this doesn’t look better at all.

      • latetodinner

        My wife misses the extra 15 minutes his preening, flexing and non explanations add to games. She was lamenting that as well as the missing tight shirt.

    • bsmfan

      From Peter King’s MMQB: http://bit.ly/OQhVpR

      “The officials have to drop their demand to keep a
      pension that’s better than full-time NFL employees have, and the league has to jack up the money it has offered by $10 million or $12 million over the seven-year life of the contract. It’s time. I can’t say it better than Bears cornerback Charles Tillman did late Saturday night:
      “Can we get our refs back? … Replacement refs aren’t cutting it.””

      Basically, this breaks down to 60k/yr/per team/over the 7 year life.

      You’re telling me Jerry Jones, if the Cowboys get some bad call that costs them a game and ultimately the tie-break in the NFC East, won’t “fly commercial instead of private on one flight” (F+M words), to have this not happen, you’re kidding me. Again, the bigger point, which the national media is on, is the safety. Exhibit #2 next to a cat scan/brain tissue scan showing the damage, is this. I can’t believe that the $1,000/hr lawyers on Park Avenue aren’t telling Goodell and the NFL this. Did you see the Sunday Night NBC game? The ref couldn’t even face the camera the right way.

      ————————

      On the McClure news, which I left a few questions on the previous post, it does seem like Sox are prepping for the final year of Valentine to be next year. I assume this is the best for them as its a bridge for them to get John Farrell back.

  • Hambone

    I was hoping Ryan would mention this….WEEI/NESN Jimmy Fund Radio-Telethon! Let’s all donate to KCancer! 877-738-1234 or go to weei.com.

    Thanks!

  • bsmfan

    F+M on TSH are going over the Channel Media Survey for the Boston Sports Media/teams/etc

    http://bostonherald.com/track/inside_track/view/20220821inside_track_headline

    If you need the link.

    • http://twitter.com/DryHeave1 DryHeave

      Shocked they are #2….. the way things have gone this year I had em’ behind Bruins and Celtics too!

  • bsmfan

    I’ll assume this will make some rounds today:

    “Word from Yawkey Way is that the Sox front office hired buses to
    bring players, office and staff to the funeral from the ballpark to the
    church. The suits, we hear, were surprised and disappointed when the
    vast majority of the 40 players on the roster didn’t bother to show up
    for the services.

    “We ordered the buses for the front office to go, knowing that any
    players could join us or drive separately from their homes,” Sox
    spokesman Charles Steinberg told the Track. “Between the
    ownership, front office, current players and staff, and former players,
    we were well represented by the people who knew Johnny best.”

    The only players the Herald observed at the funeral at St. John The Evangelist Church in Swampscott were designated hitter David Ortiz [stats], pitchers Clay Buchholz and Vincente Padilla and catcher Jarrod Saltalamacchia.”

    http://www.bostonherald.com/track/inside_track/view/20220823inside_track_headline/srvc=home&position=7

    • Rick Mc

      Go crawl under a rock. Nobody needs your bent for shitstirring.

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