NFL Regular Season Winds Down On Sunday

Weren’t we just in training camp, admiring the work of Zach Sudfeld and how he was going to fill in ably at tight end?

Now, the NFL regular season will be over on Sunday, and the Patriots, despite a myriad of injuries, are pretty much right where people expected them to be. With a win on Sunday against Buffalo, they can clinch a first-round bye. A loss likely puts them in the 3 or 4 seed.

Buffalo is likely to play the Patriots tough on Sunday, they’ve been better as of late, and Matt Chatham says that the Bills defensive line is the toughest for the Patriots to play in the AFC East.

Check all the coverage at PatriotsLinks.com.

This time of year means plenty of fill-in hosts on the sports radio airwaves. Some of the combinations are horrific, some are ones that I would actually listen to on a regular basis. It was great to hear Greg Dickerson on the air this week, and his pairing with PFW’s Andy Hart made for a good show.

DJ Bean is someone who I’ve really only been familiar with from his very good work covering the Bruins for WEEI.com. He’s taken some on-air shifts and has been impressive. Ryan Johnston and Mike Flynn work well together, as always.

The Globe’s Ben Volin has been on with Dale Arnold the last two mornings, and has been…OK. He seems nice enough, but doesn’t bring a whole lot to the table.

If I hear Butch Stearns take one more 10+ item list and read every single line off of it, I’m going to lose it.

Elsewhere:

NESN’s Jenny Dell in talks with Fox Sports 1 – Earlier this week, The Names Blog had this news, which is not surprising. There have been rumblings that Dell might want out, or that the new management types at NESN would like to make their own hire. If she’s going to continue to date Will Middlebrooks, it’s probably best she get out of the market anyway.

A superlative year in Boston sports media – Chad Finn looks at some of the breakout performances this year in the local media, and looks at both 98.5 and WEEI posting some strong ratings numbers.

And yes, this is happening today:

media-hockey-game

  • DryHeave

    I see where All 13 ESPN pundits pick the Patriots to win.. after seeing how they picked Patriots/Ravens game this does not make me feel good……and this “Frozen Fenway Media Game” #1) out of all those names I recognize about three of them. #2) What kind of game are they playing? a board game?….cards?

    • bsmfan

      I don’t get the uproar over ‘analyst’ picks.

      I saw a few people passing around the jpg/gif of the entire ESPN Countdown crew picking against the Patriots. I get the joke among Patriots fans but it also makes us look like a silly bunch.

      Even if the pick’em league is for bragging rights, you’re in it to win, not to show off how much you are a homer or hate another team.

      I am in a few and have always used technical breakdowns from various sources (FO to name one), as I’m in these to win the league and not get stuck on the “who’s hot” that seems to drive much of ESPN picks. (Quite a few called for ARI to upset SEA at home, believe it or not, which I took a gamble on.)

      • DryHeave

        Not really in an “uproar” about it…just thought it was comical…Bottomline, it’s all a guessing game. If there was a magic system everybody would be in Vegas cleaning up.

  • bsmfan

    From Finn’s piece Bruce linked to above,

    “For the sixth straight period, The Sports Hub’s “Toucher and Rich” program finished first in morning drive (6-10 a.m.), checking in with a 12.2, up from a 10.8 in the summer. WEEI’s “Dennis and Callahan” finished a strong second with a 9.0, ascending from a 7.2 in the summer and a 6.0 in the spring.”

    Since we often get the “how can D&C be getting a contract extension?”, there is your reason. They are no longer #1 but I would have to think it would be a horrible idea to replace something that people still listen to.

    • Andy Dursin

      Minihane has helped D&C a great deal. With him there, the show seems lighter and more engaged. It’s not going anywhere, as much as the detractors want it to, especially with the spike in the ratings. Actually it’s the best news WEEI has had in quite a while ratings wise.

      The black hole continues to be Mutt & Merloni. Salk & Holley had a bit of a gain, D&C had a big gain, but M&M remain way behind Gresh & Zo. It’s beyond time to make a move in the midday slot on EEI.

      • bsmfan

        With anyone that follows this, the slots you point out seems to be the logical choice.

        From Finn’s Chat on Friday, he responds to a person asking about such change:

        I’d expect at least one significant change midday or afternoon drive — and possibly both. Wouldn’t shock me if Dale Arnold ended up in a bigger
        role. The midday ratings are dismal — had a 4.1 in the fall despite the Sox’ run, compared to 10.0 for Gresh and Zo. And Salk lost his bigges advocate when Jeff Brown departed.

        (He mentioned, somewhere, that Salk has rubbed a lot of people the wrong way as of recent.)

  • Andy Dursin

    I like Chad Finn’s pieces but sometimes his observations are baffling. Toucher & Rich “the best show” in Boston? Felger & Mazz second? I laughed out loud when Finn wrote that F&M is an “engaging show on the ocassions when they aren’t trolling their listeners with Chicken Little scenarios.” When exactly does that happen? Must be whenever I don’t listen to them.

  • smack_libs_around

    Butch Stearns deserve every single baseball bat swung at his head. An aloof, horrific sports media hack with an attitude to match, Butch seems to have no ambition whatsoever…preferring not to pull himself up by the boostraps when kicked (deservedly) to the side, but rather grovel around waiting for someone…anyone…to call his number. The sports media hack profession gets its reputation from people like Butch.

  • Homer Greenz

    “Weren’t we just in training camp, admiring the work of Zach Sudfeld and how he was going to fill in ably at tight end?”

    I can’t believe that I’m typing this, but Felger was the only mediot (and his lapdog Tony) to not buy into the Sudfeld hype. And he was (I think) the only mediot that predicted the Pats would run far fewer hurry-up offensive plays this season compared to last season.

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