A few more entries trickled into the BSMW Fall Fund Drive yesterday, bringing us to within $1400 of the goal amount for the drive. I’ll take today to again call out to the media people who express appreciation for the site everyday … acknowledging that they use it as a resource for their own work. If that is the case, then why not send something in for the drive? PayPal is pretty quick and painless to use, if you don’t trust this new-fangled inta-net there is always the old check in the mail to the PO Box method. Let’s have a strong finish and reach the goal by the end of the week. Thanks again to all who have contributed already.
The grades are in from Sunday night, and as you might expected the Patriots once again receive high marks. Kevin Mannix hands out all A’s and B’s, with the exception of a C for Special Teams. His comments about the coaching are a little curious, but overall he’s pretty fair. Michael Parente concurs, handing out all high marks with only a C+ for the Special Teams. Steve Grogan on Patsfans.com once again has A’s for the offense and A’s for the defense in this one.
After watching Drew Bledsoe on Sunday night, Nick Cafardo and Chris Kennedy come to the conclusion that hey, this Tom Brady guy is pretty good after all. Bill Burt has a obituary on the career of Bledsoe. Bill Reynolds looks at the fall of Bledsoe, the rise of Brady and how the two will forever be linked. Bob Halloran can’t understand why people around here are mean to Drew, because when it’s all said and done, he feels Bledsoe will be a strong candidate for the Hall of Fame. I’ve said it before, I’ll say it again. Most of the vitriol seemingly directed towards Bledsoe really has nothing to do with Drew. It’s backlash against certain media types to whom Drew was the best thing since sliced bread and who took every possible occasion to lavish praise on him, make excuses for him, and note how he was going to come back and haunt the Patriots, etc etc etc…. Their arrogance and blindness in this matter is justifiable cause for anger among fans who shouldn’t have to continually be insulted in this manner. When Drew fails, the “told ya so” mentality is more directed towards his media supporters than at Bledsoe personally.
Tom Curran says only the Patriots and the Eagles have shown themselves to consistently have what it takes to win week-to-week, he notes the Steelers have maturity issues and you don’t know what they’re going to do in January. Karen Guregian looks at the solid work done by the Patriots offensive line Sunday night. Mike Reiss looks at the incredible night the Patriots had in the running game against Buffalo. Alan Greenberg looks at Tedy Bruschi who seems to have avoided serious injury on that grotesque hit Sunday night. Michael Parente also has a look at Bruschi. Steve Buckley (subscription only) says that these Patriots, no matter how well they play, are never satisfied and always looking to get better. Ian M Clark says the Patriots appear to be rounding into form nicely for the stretch drive. Tim Weisberg says the Patriots are making a clear case that they are the class of the NFL. Steve Conroy looks at a dominating night for the Patriots defense, despite their injuries. Weisberg also says that as good as Adam Vinatieri might be, he’s not as good as Gino Cappelletti…yet. The Herald looks at the Patriots’ 1986 drug scandal in today’s excerpt from Michael Felger’s book.
Cafardo’s notebook looks at Bruschi’s close call. Guregian’s notebook has more on the Patriots linebacker in almost a carbon copy article. Curran’s notebook says that Priest Holmes is likely out for next Monday night’s game against the Patriots. Reiss’ notebook has Belichick’s comments on Rodney Harrison’s penalty for a low hit on Drew Bledsoe.
Tony Massarotti wonders if the Sox are searching for left handed pitching this offseason, but notes that they just need to get pitching, period. Sean McAdam says that the Red Sox offseason priorities remain Pedro Martinez and Jason Varitek, and has an “industry source” who says that the general assumption is that Pedro will remain in Boston. Bob Hohler looks at Manny Ramirez’s chances for the AL MVP. The general feeling seems to be that Vladimir Guerrero will take home that award. Massarotti also takes a broader looks at the free agent pitching market. Hohler’s notebook looks at the Sox interest in Carl Pavano, while Jeff Horrigan’s notebook says the Sox have a meeting lined up with Pavano for Thursday. Gerry Callahan (subscription only) has another article on Barry Bonds, who he compares to Rosie Ruiz. This was also a hot topic on Callahan’s WEEI show this morning.
Peter May says that the Celtics have been just fine with Gary Payton’s need to make visits to his family on the west coast. Mark Murphy looks at the improvement of Marcus Banks as Payton’s primary backup. After a pretty relaxed November schedule, Murphy’s notebook looks at an absolutely hellish December schedule.
ESPN2 has Preseason NIT college basketball starting at 7:00.