Report Card time and it's Myth Debunking Time when it comes to 4th-and-1.

Myth #1: "It's what Bill always does"



KIRK MINIHANE

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FOXBORO — Despite the fact that Vikings quarterback Brett Favre was reportedly diagnosed Monday with two separate fractures in his left ankle, Patriots coach Bill Belichick gave no doubt Monday afternoon as to who they think will be under center for Minnesota when the two teams meet Sunday afternoon at Gillette Stadium.

Responding to a question as to whether or not they’ll be preparing as if Favre was going to play Favre, Belichick smiled.

Bill Belichick made his weekly appearance on The Big Show, chatting with Glenn Ordway, Fred Smerlas, and Steve DeOssie about the Patriots' victory over the Chargers on Sunday and the decision to go for it on fourth-and-1 late in the game on a play in which BenJarvus Green-Ellis was stopped for a loss. 

 

"I felt we would be OK with the play we had called. Obviously it didn't work out," Belichick said, adding that, "I need to do a better job in those situations with the plays."

 

FOXBORO — With his tongue firmly in cheek, Patriots coach Bill Belichick weighed in Monday on the comments from NFL officials praising safety Brandon Meriweather for his “tenacious” hits in Sunday’s game against San Diego.

NFL executive vice president of football operations Ray Anderson, one week after criticizing Brandon Meriweather for his hit against Ravens tight end Todd Heap, praised the Patriots safety responding to the league’s crackdown on hits to the neck and head of defenseless players.

NFL executive vice president of football operations Ray Anderson, one week after criticizing Brandon Meriweather for his hit against Ravens tight end Todd Heap, praised the Patriots safety responding to the League's crackdown on hits to the neck and head of defenseless players. Meriweather, who was fined $50,000 last week for his hit on Heap, leveled Chargers wide receiver Patrick Crayton with a hit below the shoulder on Sunday. Anderson lauded Meriweather's clean, aggressive play.

 

Patriots cornerback Brandon Meriweather stopped in for his weekly visit with the Dale & Holley show from Gillette Stadium on Patriots Monday. Meriweather said he wasn't surprised with Bill Belichick's decision Sunday to go for it on fourth-and-1 at midfield with two minutes remaining and New England holding a three-point lead over the Chargers. "That's coach," Meriweather said. "Coach is an aggressive coach, and that's what we love about him, the fact that when somebody else won't do it, he would."

 

Patriots defensive lineman Vince Wilfork called in to the Dale & Holley show for his weekly appearance on Patriots Monday. Wilfork said he's happy to leave San Diego with a win, no matter how ugly Sunday's 23-20 victory over the Chargers was.

 

CBS Sports NFL analyst Boomer Esiason made his weekly appearance on the Dennis & Callahan show Monday morning to talk about the Patriots' 23-20 victory over the Chargers. The hot topic from the game is Bill Belichick's decision to have the Patriots go for it on fourth-and-1 from midfield.

 

"I guess it was Bill just being Bill, and he can take chances like that," Esiason said, adding: "It's not the decision I would have made. I would have punted the ball and I would have said, 'Defense, go stop them.' "

 

Another year, another questionable fourth-down call ... albeit one with less controversy, since the Patriots beat the Chargers on Sunday, 23-20.

 

A little less than a year after the Patriots lost to the Colts after they went for it on fourth-and-2 from their own 28-yard line, New England again elected to go for a first down rather than punt with roughly two minutes remaining in the game. The Patriots again were stopped, this time on a run on fourth-and-1 that gave the Chargers the ball on the Patriots' 48-yard line.

 

Early last week, the quote was delivered off-handedly by Patriots cornerback Kyle Arrington — three simple sentences that, in many ways, have come to define the 2010 Patriots.