I never said Tom Brady was finished.

You knew the Patriots would bounce back big this week!

We were only criticizing what was happening on the field!

Oh, so its the media’s fault the Patriots played poorly in their first four games?

It’s the Bengals! Wake me when they actually win a big game.

And on and on and on. There is a lot of walking back of #hotsportztakes coming through.

I’m also fond of The team finally listened to the media, and is doing the things we wanted them to do all along narrative coming from the likes of Tim Benz.

Yes, thank you sports radio, for all your brave criticism of the last week. We owe ya one!

As Benz noted, Al Michael and Cris Collinsworth spent a good chunk of last night’s broadcast pointing out the volume of criticism and cynicism that had been aimed at Tom Brady, Bill Belichick and the Patriots over the last week, since the debacle in Kansas City, and how much of it was over-the-top in terms of reality.

I’m not much of a Collinsworth fan, but it was good to hear someone actually attempt to inject a bit of perspective and rationale to the situation.

Get all the reaction and coverage from the game at PatriotsLinks.com.

A few media columns, items for today:

Tom Brady a hot topic on NFL studio programs – Chad Finn looks at the chatter over Brady on the networks yesterday.

Sunday Night Football’s Al Michaels still at top of his game – Yesterday, Finn had a feature in the Sunday paper on the NBC broadcaster.

Turner Sports to rotate Anthony, Hill and Webber in place of Kerr – Richard Deitsch looks at the TNT NBA broadcast plans and a bunch of other media items.


Bob Ryan’s Memoir will be in stores tomorrow. I’ve been working my way through it, and as you would imagine, it is fascinating. It starts with Dave Cowens deciding to retire from the Celtics in Ryan’s hotel room, and continues on a heavy Celtics/Red Sox theme for much of the book.

Ben Golliver of SI.com talked to Ryan about the book:

Ten questions with Bob Ryan: Celtics tales, NBA’s G.O.A.T. and ‘Scribe’

The Globe Magazine ran an excerpt from the book: Bob Ryan on Larry Bird: ‘He possessed a total game’


43 thoughts on “Beep. Beep. Beep. That Sound You Hear Is Media Walking Back.

  1. Typical Ryan and Boston media. That interview with Golliver has this whole section of Ryan pathetically moaning about how the oh-so-important media doesn’t get to sit courtside anymore. There’s even a very Peter King-ish sentence about how upset he gets when he sees a 5yo kid in a courtside seat eating ice cream and how that should be he, Bob Ryan, sitting there. Grow up, Bob, for crying out loud. Even 5yos begin to understand that not everything is about them..

    Back in the day I may have bought a copy of the book (to be fair, I’m sure it’ll be interesting), but I’ll be damned if I’ll put any coin in Ryan’s pocket these days. I’ll pick it up in a library once it’s out.


    1. Agree. That whine-fest about the courtside seats being given to actual fans instead of the media pretty much stains an otherwise interesting interview. It’s amazing just how important these people think they are (not just sportswriters–regular “news” people are much worse in their arrogance and self-importance), and it’s no wonder that they can’t understand why their profession usually ranks among the two or three least-respected ones in all the public opinion polls you see about the subject.


      1. That answer from Ryan about the seats had me rolling my eyes. So far out of touch it’s almost unbelievable, but I thought he made up for it with the last answer (copied below).

        I haven’t always agreed with Ryan, but it always seemed he loved sports. Unlike some of these guys who are living the dream, but seem miserable (Shaughnessy).

        SI.com: What is it that you want readers to take from Scribe?
        Ryan: This is a positive book by someone who loves sports. This is not an exposé​, a tell-all, taking names or settling
        scores. I don’t have any. I could write a book about negativity, we can
        do that. There’s all kinds of stuff that bothers me, but that wasn’t
        the objective here. It’s about somebody who lived a very pleasurable
        life doing this. I think I was programmed to do it, things came into
        place. I’m totally grateful and had a great time. Alot of writers are detached and say they don’t care who wins or loses
        and that they only write about people. That’s fine. But we wouldn’t be
        caring about these people absent the games. To me, the game has always
        been paramount, and I wanted to convey that.


    2. Seriously, I can’t think of another Boston media member that
      I have soured on as much as Bob Ryan. The older he gets, the less I want to
      hear from him.


  2. People playing or working for professional teams listening to sports talk.. Probably not since most aren’t unemployed, drug-addicted, low testosterone bad fathers with horrible credit, tons of debt and erectile dysfunction … but that’s just based on the advertisements.


  3. Remember ‘Ye Olde Days’ when Media Hacks could lob volley after volley of criticism with no means of retaliation (except for the perfunctory and always cherry-picked ‘Letters to the Editor’)? Yep…Glad those days are gone, too. Which is why you see Media Hacks in such an apoplectic state. They wanted a media highway with no one else on it. They wanted the pulpit to themselves. They wanted one-way, finger-wagging pontification. But ever since Algore invented the Internet, Media Hacks have been a rage-filled lot: Web sites like this, ‘comments sections,’ and…OMG!!!…Twitter…have been a collective stun gun to all the thin-skinned media hacks out there. To this we all say, “GOOD!!!”


  4. The only thing to happen last night that was fueled by last week’s media vomit was Belichick seeking out Aaron Dobson on the sideline to say “Good job” after his fourth quarter catch. The reason: The story about Dobson was complete BS and I think it pissed BB off. When the man says he makes every decision in the interest of what’s best for the team, he means it. But that doesn’t mean he doesn’t respect his players.


  5. You know…I am not sure last weeks media hysteria regarding the Pats was completely uncalled for. Nor am I sure there needs to be a lot of backing up and retreating from positions.

    – The Patriots had played 4 straight games and were underwhelming in all 4 including a 30-7 blow out of Minnesota where QB12 was extremely agitated in the post game presser.
    – The OL and new OL coach spent 4 weeks auditioning a combination that works. The rotations and lack of protection for QB12 took a toll on the team’s offense to the point where KC in the second half beat the Pats like a drum. Something Miami did as well. Heck Lowly Oakland gave the Pats OL fits.
    – The Offensive game plans have been a mess. I am highly critical of McDaniels. I would love to know how the Cincy game plan (one which looked remarkably like a Bill OB game plan) got instituted because it looked nothing like the first four.
    – QB12 was off to his worse start in 14 years. His lowest passer rating and his lowest completion percentage. He appeared to be holding the ball and locking onto targets.
    – The receivers have been and continue to be less than stellar including last night’s effort. Edelman struggled last night (5 catches). LaFell looked better but he made mistakes. Amendola almost got killed. Dobson had one catch. That shines a light on the player personnel department and its ability to evaluate talent coupled with what the Pats are asking their WR’s and offense in general to do.
    – Going into last night the Pats defense was not living up to its billing. The DL was porous against the run against both Miami and KC. Revis was being used in zone more than man to man, which exposed the secondary more than need be. They could not get off the field on third downs and they were giving up big plays (something they did again last night).

    My point is there were some significant issues with this team through 4 games and based on preseason expectations there was disappointment. I can see why a programmer would lead with “the sky is falling” because it was. When you only have a 16 game season patience is a luxury.

    Having said that, the innuendo, suppositions and out right made up crap that passed as opinion/news/conversation topics were ridiculously dumb. I avoided most sportstalk last week because I knew I would throw something at someone if I heard Tony Mazz or Kirk Minihane argue that Garappolo is the better QB and that the Pats are going to just cut ties and release Brady. Further that Brady’s body language says he knows this and that is why he is playing so poorly.

    There needs to be a forum/sportstalker where criticism of the Pats can occur in a reasoned way. Right now there isn’t. Sensationalism wins. So we get a week like last week. I think there was plenty to deconstruct and criticize. I don’t think anyone in the media save Tom Curran, Mike Reiss, and amazingly enough Greg Bedard managed anything near reasoned or rational discourse regarding this team last week. I am not holding my breath for any this week either.


    1. The receivers struggled? What game were you watching last night? Did you miss Gronkowski and Wright in the game? Ponderous.


      1. They are tight ends. Here are the numbers for the WR’s:

        Edelman – 5 receptions (8 targets) 35 yards
        LaFell – 1 reception (4 targets) – 20 yards
        Dobson – 1 reception (1 target) 16 yards
        Amandola – 1 reception (1 target) 7 yards

        Brady threw the ball 35 times. He targeted receivers 14 times and completed 8 for a total of 78 yards. I have no idea what you are watching but by any account those are mediocre numbers.

        Thank god for the tight ends and Shane Vareen but for the Pats to be successful…they need WR’s to make plays. They depend on throwing the ball too much not to have the WR’s included in the game plan.


    2. Criticism was warranted, for sure. I don’t think anyone would deny that. What wasn’t warranted was the over-the-top hysteria, which, in Spinal Tap terms, had been cranked up to “11” by halftime of the KC game. The pronouncements of some that “the dynasty is over; they’re not even a good team anymore,” were far beyond the pale. They still were a 2-2 football team after that KC game, tied for first place. And one of those wins was a 23-pointer on the road — sure, it wasn’t a perfect effort, but beating a team by 23 on the road is not easy to do in the NFL. Moreover, you would think that some of these media people who have been around for the entire BB era would do a little historical research and realize that the Pats have, in fact, sometimes gotten off to slow starts over the last 10 or 12 years. Cases in point: 1-3 in 2001 (won Super Bowl that year); 2-2 in 2003, with the losses by 31 at Buffalo and against STEVE SPURRIER’S Washington Redskins in Week 4 (also won Super Bowl that year); 3-3 in 2012, ended up 12-4 and hosting the AFC title game (lost to Baltimore without the injured Gronk and Talib, and after Welker made yet another huge, momentum-changing drop in the second half). I’m not denying that the team had looked shaky this season prior to last night, but a little rationality was called for given that only one month of a four-month NFL season had gone by. Now, if that KC game had occurred in Week 12 and had dropped them to 6-6, then maybe such hysterical media “coverage” would have been warranted. And these “whispers of discontent” storylines we’ve seen over the past week were not only pathetic, but sadly, they were all-too-predictable. ESPN? Chris Mortensen? Really? I’m going to trust THAT organization — the organization that employs Gregggggggg “Spygate is worse than the Black Sox scandal” Easterbrook, and Tom “They hate their coach” Jackson — to give me the “facts” about what’s happening in the Pats’ lockerroom? No thanks.


      1. AMEN, Tony C!… once again, no problem with RATIONAL criticism but last week was WAY over the top….side note: just heard Chris Mortensen say on “NFL Live”…. “forget the Chiefs game, that home LOSS to the Raiders is what really started the panic”…ahh they won that game Morty. There’s your “NFL Insider”


    3. Huh. Do you find Bedard has a history of being over the top? I thought (especially when he was at the Globe) he was quite restrained and one of the less Sky Is Falling guys around.


      1. I find Bedard to be Jeckel and Hyde-like. He has written a number of bash Bill Belichick and lack of access hit pieces and at the same time he has written a lot (more than a few) of well researched x’s and o’s football pieces. He is better now that he is at MMQB. The more he was at the Globe the more he appeared to be “fitting in”. Maybe that is a reason why he left…I do not know.


  6. Big win last night, but it’s too bad the objective fans had to listen to the crap from the trolls last week, but now we get to hear the same crap from the honks this week. It was a big boy win. I am not going to be one of the guys who takes anything away from that. I want to see them this motivated every week. The trolls are going to troll and the honks are going to reply to the trolls. I wish Bruce would ignore the trolls.


  7. I was cracking up at Benz congratulating himself and the rest of the trolls for motivating the coaching staff and the players.

    This is a favorite schtick of Felger and Mazz and Fatty and the Forehead as well. The media as the public guardians. They love to think and make others think that they’re “speaking truth to power”. Emperor Belichick has no clothes!!!! What a load of comical crap.

    Bruce you hafta also love Tony Mazz opening up the YARM show by doubling down on Mortenson’s report, just a few hours after Tom Brady was on the other station debunking Mortenson’s report.


    1. F&M fukking SUCKED today. 95% of the show pouring gasoline on the rumor fires and 5% about the actual game. Including the great body language expert, Tony Mazz, getting his psych eval on by analyzing the handshake between Brady and Bill and what it REALLY meant. The meaning within the meaning within the meaning. Mazz must f**king love the movie Inception.


      1. Too funny, I had forgotten about Tony’s analysis of the handshake…I listened to about 45 seconds of the opening segment, just enough to hear Tony pouring on the the whiny voice and the opening lines of his rift (more than enough to get the gist), then it was off too work. When Mazz starts whining, you know it’s going to be a doozy.

        “Why on why will the Owners, GMs and Managers not listen to me?”


        1. Well, remember when the whole Harbaugh/Schwartz “handshake gate” thing happened a few years back? Analyzing handshakes is nothing new.


      2. Did they at least bring in Eric Mangini to analyze the tape of the handshake? Remember the big kerfuffle 8 years ago over BB’s “disrespectful” post-game handshakes with Mangini after those Pats/Jets games? Now those were fun times! (Sarc/off)


  8. I don’t know who “Best of BSMW” is on Twitter, but that is some fine work turning the tables on the whiny troll known as Tim Benz.


  9. Shank is preaching the March of the Tomato Cans on with Zolak and Gresh.

    It wasn’t the Pats on Sunday night, at all, it was all about Marvin Lewis and the Bungals.

    You can set your watch to Shank!


    1. The same Bengels who had yet to give up a sack, yet to give up a fumble, were the only undefeated team in the league, were ranked #1 in the league by various NFL power rankings, etc…

      And I’m sure the same Bengels team who Shaughnessy proclaimed the Pats couldn’t beat just hours earlier.


    2. Is Shank still pushing the angle that Kraft’s “buddy” Roger Goodell is lining up all these “tomato cans” on the Pats’ schedule for him every year, or has he finally come to the realization that the NFL schedule is determined by a formula based on several factors, including inter-conference and inter-divisional rotations as well as the previous year’s standings? Let me guess…..Shank either still doesn’t know about the scheduling formula, or he knows about it and he simply doesn’t care to mention it because that would spoil his narrative?


  10. In case you missed it: Bill Barnwell does a good analysis in this article of why the Pats are either going to cut ties with Brady soon, or keep him around for a while: because if he’s on the roster as of Week 17 this year, the next three years of his contract become guaranteed, and releasing/trading him would then entail an enormous cap hit.


    Of course we can’t forget that the Cap Is Crap ((tm) Felger & Mazz)….


  11. Merloni, not to be topped by Benz, in patting himself on the back:

    @LouMerloni Thought so but we’ll all be idiots 2morrow.They shut us up”@angelalynn7992: @LouMerloni I’m pretty sure u been calling for that all season!”


  12. Ah, Volin is still in line with the Globe. Last night on CSNNE, “Don’t think for a minute that the o-line is fixed!”


  13. I am bemused by the extent to which the media makes itself part of the stories it reports. Especially in this past week, with the low and then the high of the Patriot game outcomes, the radio personalities are more enamored about reconciling what they have said and thought than about the outcome in and of itself. I get this…the outcome is the outcome, and there is not enough of it to fill 12 hours of radio. But this morning I am hearing about how Belichick does something this way and something that way, and analyzing how it isn’t consistent, and seeking near-Macchiavellian explanations for it, all on the premise of “well, if it were me, I would treat every situation exactly the same.” Narcissistic is what I call that kind of behavior. Does analysis have to be sooo narcissistic?


  14. This broke earlier in the week but the NBA has joined in on the sports TV bubble. I assume all of us posting here have, at minimum, ESPN and TNT, which will skyrocket in costs due to the coming deals with just the NFL and NBA alone. This means your cable bill will be going up. This site does a good job at breaking it down:


    If you were thinking about canceling cable TV for either cost or 99% of it being garbage you don’t watch, this just adds to it.


  15. Mazz a couple of weeks ago:

    “The Pats have no weaponz! Belichick can’t draft wide receivers! Brady can’t develop wide receivers! They never have! They all suck! S. U. C. K. Suck!”

    This week:
    “Brady and Thompkins worked really well together! Thompkins is a Brady guy. Tyms is a Garroppolo guy. They’re dumping Brady ASAP!”

    Felger’s just as awful.

    “I’m not telling you everything manufactured on the sidelines and in the locker room, but they did have a celebration in the locker room with Moss a month before he was traded a few years ago. Just saying…”

    “I’m not telling you that Robert Kraft is cheap, but they do have a tight budget and refuse to go over it. Their margins are very important to them. Cap is crap!”

    Listening to the radio about this team after a big win is just as bad as after a big loss!


  16. Well, the St. Louis Cardinals are off to the NLCS again. This is the CHB’s nightmare. Don’t you know that they will be a boring team to cover since they won a few years ago, and we know them so well because “they rolled over twice against the Red Sox in the World Series”? I heard this on Gresh and Zo this afternoon.

    They rolled over in the World Series? Is that better or worse than being a “tomato can”? Can someone create an infographic of how this all fits together so I can learn the hierarchy of CHB’s hatred of all successful organizations? Thanks.


    1. Is this a staple of every ‘pre-season’ media piece with whatever aging superstar is on any team? I’m not knocking Chara here but this seems to be clockwork for every team before each season. In August, we always read how Tom Brady only eats gluten free, organic, non-caged chicken eggs. Never been in better shape, etc. We all hope they are. In fact, I hope that they’re not only exclusively shopping at Whole Foods but they also take advantage of (loud throat clearing noise like Felger) modern medicine.


        1. Yeap, he has. Can’t hit on him for that, He assumes, like me, that 75%+ of the league is doing something.


      1. You’re thinking of the MLB Spring Training “Best Shape of My Life” stories?

        I’m looking at this from a totally different angle. I assumed that Chara would retire after his contract is up, but maybe he won’t. Some of these NHL players seem to play forever.


  17. If you saw the buzz last night, ESPN ran a 30for30 (hello BostonSportsGuy) on the BC point shaving scandal about 35 years ago. I thought it was another very well done piece.

    Link to WatchESPN:


    This works if you have a TV on one of their partners who pay for the ESPN3 service (Comcast does). Yours might not. I know they’re available on Netflix, as well. Worst case, if you can’t find a rerun to DVR/watch, there are already copies floating around on the Internet.




    1. Good documentary. I was surprised to find out that Henry Hill was so deeply involved in the scandal, because in the movie “Goodfellas” they have another of their associates, “Maury” the wig salesman, casually mention to DeNiro’s character (Jimmy Conway…Jimmy Burke in real life) that they were “shaving points up in Boston,” right before Pesci’s character shoves the ice pick into the back of Maury’s head. The scene implies that Hill wasn’t really involved in the BC scandal, but I guess in a two-hour movie about a guy’s 25-year mob career, some highlights have to be glossed over or skipped entirely. I was also surprised to see Mike Mayock interviewed. I had no clue he actually roomed with one of the guys initially implicated in the scandal. On a side note: the BC basketball program had some really, really good coaches in the early days of the Big East, didn’t it? Tom Davis took them to a very high level in the early 80s, and then Gary Williams, who later rebuilt Maryland’s program into a powerhouse and won the 2002 national title, also took them to a couple of NCAAs (nearly making the ’85 Final Four an ALL Big East festival, instead of just 3 of the 4 teams).


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