Jan 4, 2013|
Mike Reiss joins Mut and Merloni to hit on everything Patriots. Reiss gives an injury update on key players like Gronkowski, Ninkovich, and Dennard, discusses who he thinks the Pats will play, and Josh McDaniels future.
Transcript - will not be 100% accurate
Final hour Butler not a three point seven WEEI Patrick Chung will join us at 130 -- go over under its very play off oriented. While car weekend at about 120 joining us right now on the eighteenth the outlining AT&T forgy LPG. With speeds up to ten times faster than three G it's AT&T rethink possible. Is great like -- habeas PM boston.com Mike happy new year. And in my they -- how we doing guys. -- a lot of -- talk today -- Rex Ryan just like greasy governor pat usual wanna disclose to start the program. The Bill Belichick kept too much -- that we're gonna do now Delaware you have a Bill Belichick had to Mike you know I mean the New York Jets guys. Keep getting into the media. On the -- Belichick shows up on that boat in Nantucket and the ex NFL films -- Thomas that duke is -- Dylan -- or he's got like it. Your favorite player. That somehow tied to the patriots and somehow -- lawyer Malloy right the lawyer -- economy goes the -- -- a lawyer Malloy that it isn't just. It's perfect because it just shows you how lucky is a patriots -- -- -- -- the York team year after year. Same coach same quarterback jets are -- buffalo need to coach the great division to be interviewed patriots. -- you know I think about that that I've never actually fully covered a coaching change and you think about that. Around all the changes in the league spell check now the longest tenured coach with the same team since 2000. And you think about some of the other reporters out there like in Cleveland where. You know I change every two years is the norm. It's somewhat -- remarkable. Level of stability that the patriots have reached and I know that's something that. The craft and always sort of wanted looking at may be the dealers says the model to follow from. You know Chuck -- the Mike Tomlin -- could have were not too many changes out there so they they have a set up the way they wanted it's pretty good setup form. It was also a good set of -- -- sit here in the bye week and you've got three potential teams that you've already played this year. I imagine that must make a little be easiest first game play. I think it helped them move from a personal standpoint you know one of the things. That that you every week I'm always interested to watch how the patriots -- what their businesses that feel like. They -- they almost have like an exam for their players every week to understand the personnel on the opposing team and Belichick. Always -- the home when he comes up to -- news conferences and without reading off a note start you know lifting off 161718. Players. On the opposing teams so I think. It can be a little bit of the jumpstart when whenever you're getting into these can say hey. You remember back on October 7 can only played the Broncos here's the personnel here the new players sort back in November 18 when we played Nicole. Is the same guys that are there here a couple new guys so it gives you a little bit about a jump start on that part of the process. I know you and -- -- bronco bandwagon in terms of them being maybe the toughest opponent the patriots in the AFC might put the three. They could face in the divisional round Denver and Cincinnati not included. What team coming to Gillette a week from Sunday if they could give the patriots the biggest test. You know I think I would if I had the rank on the -- I'd probably put you know the toughest testing the ravens just only from the -- -- you know then having been some of these big games before and haven't some veteran players where. You know you know the moment and be too big for them are they good enough hi I have my doubts I think the patriots should still. -- but I I'd put them first. And then I put Houston second because they think defensively they can still do different things that they can cause you some problems although. You have to have major concerns would snapshot of Europe Texans fan watching the way he played and then I put the colts. The least dangerous team and and I think it's a great story and they plan emotion that's a distinct talent wise. They're ready at different level of a much lower level in the patriots. Direction -- the Texans winning. This week which would make them coming in to fox with -- internist the. Round. Man Lou I I really I I really felt strongly they were gonna lose to the cold so I I I and I thought they were really fading I mean obviously. Good to have the chance for home field and not to be able to close that out it really. Speaks to a team that is heading in the wrong direction about myself on this since they got. Quote to the picnic anymore as. Am -- without much of the believer in the -- and the and it was sort of like picking the lesser of two evils if you will actually Houston that's home. You know I do think they'll fight I think the defense can still creates some problems and I guess I'm just not 100% sold on the bank. When you cover this team might do you notice a difference when it throws from regular season to playoffs like is there are a light is there a switch that's clicked on all of a sudden there. More focus is actually happened down there to let these players. Well you know what it had. I think it's striking a balance in a couple years ago. Belichick put a sign up you know when the players were walking in with the number zero and zero rate their -- and defeat. The idea being that it's a new season and I think that was back in. 2010 and then. Looking back on that I can almost feel like maybe the team got a little tight. That year you know almost putting too much stock into the idea that a one mistake in your season could be over. And and I think they wanna strike the balance between look we we understand the urgency of the play option and you know it's a different -- can now but but not going overboard and don't forget hate. We're committed and let's just do what we do so I think. There's an element of almost like you don't want to put. Too much into the idea that hey it's the second season of the playoffs. Players know just sharpen the focus a little bit more do what you do and we should be okay. Like what gambit to -- her return to practices Rob Ninkovich yesterday but I Christine before no guarantees can be playing. I'm actually surprised just dealt gingerly he walked off the field left buddy my event on the season what's the latest with them. Well Lou I I would like you have a surprise that that only because you know you you watched him. I'm leading the medical attention having trouble putting any pressure side as he walked off the field. So I think obviously a positive sign he's he's done on the field I think that silver lining for the patriots. Is if you can't go away it's a lot. But that's probably their deepest position. On defense they have a lot of options there and yes it would be stepped back if Ninkovich can go but right now I think you have a look at it as this guy. Specifically for him was huge and I think he'll have a chance on the thirteenth to be there for the patriot. Yes you know of course Monica thing to be huge for Q is Rob Gronkowski because. It. He was out you break your own and four to six weeks it was six weeks he returns that game has some plays that they -- it on TV where. Obviously protecting that armed not using it to block limited snaps which you know he missed that much time that's OK but the way he looked at times you would think after six weeks Mike. This bone is -- this isn't ligament it's just a bone. Maybe I had an NI I I we also saw the same thing I'd say the positive part of the Gradkowski. Performance that I actually thought he ran. Really well -- I felt like. That the time off probably helped them you'd probably faster. In that game that he was from what we've seen you know when he was playing before so let's let's put that positive out there and then move on to what was obviously. The negative he was clearly uncomfortable. With whatever he was wearing or just the whole mental aspect of getting re acclimated. To contacted. And I think you can look at it two different ways one here's a positive way to look at it -- good that -- gets out of the way now because you don't wanna see dead in the play out. Two maybe not so positive it's just the way it's gonna be going forward and I think there's only one person that knows that and that's Rob Gronkowski. Certainly Louis story and I'm gonna have to monitor going forward. In terms of the secondary. Danner has been terrific this last month or so is his injury -- is one -- out of a playoff game. I don't believe so much and then seeing him around the locker room the last you know couple of days being down there. I'm -- senseless that if it was the playoff. The last couple weeks that he would have been playing in the game and you know we talk about injuries there's a little bit I guess work involved but. But my sense is he'll be ready to go I think the way they'd been managing him over the last couple weeks it's been with the playoffs and kind of you mentioned. The bye -- being huge for a player like. You know Rob Ninkovich I think the same can be had for dinner put him right in the mix because. I'd be surprised if he's not out there on the thirteen. Like Greece ESPN Boston joining us patriots at the violates a wanna go big picture with dinner next year they go to camp and and he is your number two quarterback. And it's a bad thing for them what the way he's progressed this year the way he plays the ball the -- physical. I've been impressed and if he's number two and -- to lead number one or somebody else I think that's a bad thing for the steam like. No not not a bad thing at all my and that's one position that you're gonna see. Some movement one way or the other whether it's resigning after signing other players because you look down the list to lead the freeagent Arrington at the free -- and you're number three guy. You know Dowling I don't know what you can tell you can't count on him what's beyond that to mean anything you get from him have to be a bonus so I think. They'll continue to look to build depth there I think standards definitely. Part of the mix I think he's you know. Played well since he's you know after having the hamstring injury in camp and really not getting a lot of reps for rookie -- sort of catch up. And do what he's done a -- into a very solid. -- for the -- he's definitely. Part of the future and I know we've talked about this early in the year patriots have swung and missed some a lot of defensive backs in the draft but that's one that it looks like they got right. -- that might help mode two is expected to leave hasn't played the last two weeks in his defense the secondary. There's still looked could be tackled before they turn that around he'd get all the credit may be going to free agency today yet I turned the Patriots defense around bulk. That's cup which he wasn't in there. Actually help lead the page as far as resigning this guy delicacy in combat. Yeah I think so do I my compared to learn to leave it's almost like -- this is like Randy -- all over again in 2008. You know. When they got mark initially you know seven it was the one year deal -- was on their terms. Same thing here you require them to get one year left that's on your terms you now is how how much you're willing to commit. To a guy wins the leverage now shifts a little bit says you know when you get some security -- still gonna get the same guy. And I think that that was the same question they had a -- really mosque when he was playing for something in 2007. I think they felt really good about that situation there was limited risk for the team and it worked out well then they went three years 27 million for him the next year. And I think that'll be the same type of approach I would anticipate the team taking with the lead. That the local short years and and they'll give them to be willing to extend him some money but if another team. Comes in and and it upped the ante to a level they're not willing to go I do think that walk away remember now they have the flexibility. Wouldn't according well I think now we can probably say the better -- looks like its safety. You still have the flexibility diplomat corner and that gives the team a little leverage in that situation. In terms of this right now this playoff run last year Josh McDaniels relieved of his duties in Saint Louis he joins the patriots. Romeo canal along our as a jobs Scott Pioli Michael -- a job do you anticipate. Either one of those guys during the patriots either in the short term or the long term going forward. I'll let let let's look at the short term -- mean last year you had the extenuating circumstances the bill O'Brien getting the Penn State job and and that transition there. That you knew you were gonna happen so. Between that part and making the -- available having the knowledge of the system. I think that it made sense for him to come in during the playoffs this year. You don't have those circumstances so much -- in the short term there's any need for another voice I think. -- Belichick probably feel pretty good about the step yet in place now. Going forward. You know there's a lot of things to consider here and and I would just say this the wild -- comedian in any of this. -- mic -- stereo who you know runs the personnel right now does a great job but we've seen him over the years. Switch from coaching to personnel personnel the coaching and if nick decides hey you know. I think I'd like to get back in this coaching thing now all of a sudden you know you have an opening and personnel well maybe it makes sense and and likewise with. Romeo and and if pepper Johnson gets an opportunity somewhere else to maybe be a coordinator which is something he's aspired to do. With -- all the coaching change is out there may be that creates an opening where Romeo comes back I think it would be on both those guys I think you have to have another domino fall. Before it becomes the consideration but I think the door would be open because both left on good terms. Mike -- Beckett did this season 2012 the regular season. Well would you say your biggest surprise in your biggest disappointment on this today. Let's see on the biggest surprise. I think that one of the things that that we talked about in the pre season was. The offensive linemen and how that would come together that late retirement -- -- and out its center. I think the offensive line has done that -- a good job so that's that's one thing that comes to mind and -- in terms of a disappointment. I guess let's say you know and this is no no fault of the players. Just after signing the two tight end to the contract extensions in the idea that you're gonna build the offense around him I think one of the disappointments for the patriots. Has to be that you only have those guys on the field together for four of your sixteen game you know also sometimes. They have great intentions -- your plans but injuries I think paddy had control don't let that happen and that's why -- have good depth and I think. You know as I say that. The Wes Welker sort of consistency. And and talk about not being able to reach a multiyear deal I think he's put himself in another good position because he's had another good year. And he's proven to be that model of consistency that I think the team needs to have been an interest if he -- that situation -- going forward. You -- see Mike's AFC playoff picks for the weekend at that ESP a boston.com all league but this give me a pick. Is Josh McDaniels back with this team next year is the head coach somewhere else like. I really think you'll be back with this team next year I think you know the best thing for me but it's like there's a certain respect. That he has for Belichick can I think the idea of coming back for a year and then open again. I just don't think I don't think he would do that to Belichick to be honest with you and I think I know we want to be head coach again. I just don't think the timing is right one because of that. In two because you know he's that he's got a growing family's been in this his third city in three years you wanna make it four and four. I just don't I don't feel that good for him right now I think in time. A look at this situation and think he'll be similar to Belichick and at the second time as head coach will be better than the first. But maybe the timing right now isn't right for -- -- expect him to be back next year. -- Mike -- of ESPN Boston great insight available for it the patriots blog right there. Enjoy patriots free weekend in all of football Saturday and Sunday Michael Ford talk the next week. I think -- happy new year. Happy New -- you to do -- by Greece joining us on the AT&T hotline AT&T forgy LTE was speeds. Up to ten times faster than three G it's AT&T. Rethink possible Patrick Chung patriots safety joins bottom of the hour 130 in ninety seconds. And FL playoff edition of over under.