One week after the Texans played the Raiders in Mexico City, there are already rumors for a similar game in 2017.

According to ESPN’s John Sutcliffe, the Patriots could face the Raiders at the Estadio Azteca at some point in 2017. On the ESPN Deportes broadcast of Monday Night Football this week, Sutcliffe said Patriots owner Robert Kraft is very interested in the possibility of playing in Mexico City.

The Patriots are scheduled to play the Raiders on the road next season, so it would work out.

New England isn’t afraid to play in International games as they have played in London twice — in 2009, the Patriots beat the Buccaneers 35-7 and in 2012, they took down the Rams, 45-7.

For more Patriots news, visit weei.com/patriots.

Blog Author: 
Ryan Hannable

Bart Scott clearly isn’t afraid to speak his mind, especially when it relates to the Patriots.

The former Jets player was at it again on Monday speaking about Rob Gronkowski’s future in New England.

Bart Scott believes Rob Gronkowski is on his way out of New England. (Robert Deutsch/USA Today Sports)

Bart Scott believes Rob Gronkowski is on his way out of New England. (Robert Deutsch/USA Today Sports)

Bart Scott clearly isn’t afraid to speak his mind, especially when it relates to the Patriots.

The former Jets player was at it again on Monday speaking about Rob Gronkowski’s future in New England.

“Gronk’s on his way out [of New England],” Scott said on CBS Sports Radio’s The D.A. Show. “Because of injuries, and they don’t stick with you when they see you slipping. When you have a big man that starts having back problems – he’s only in his seventh year, and he has two years remaining. And guess what? They already brought in his replacement and they can get him for cheaper.”

Scott is claiming Martellus Bennett will be his replacement, despite Gronkowski being younger than him.

“Don’t matter,” Scott said. “Less wear and tear on the body. Listen, we had some great players in basketball. When did you know it was over with Larry Bird? When he would go to the sideline and put that hot pack on his back.”

Added Scott: “We talk about knee injuries, back injuries, elbow brace forever. Listen, man, you think Bill Belichick going to stick with you? Negative. He’s not in the foxhole with you.”

Gronkowski left Sunday’s game with the Jets with a back injury after missing the previous game with a chest injury. The tight end is signed through 2019 and is on the books to make $7 million in 2017.

This doesn’t seem likely to happen, but again Scott isn’t afraid to be in the minority on things.

For more Patriots news, visit weei.com/patriots.

Blog Author: 
Ryan Hannable

Timing in life can be everything, especially if you’re in the NFL.

To Patriots offensive coordinator Josh McDaniels, it was just about perfect in 2001.

That was his first year in the NFL after graduating John Carroll University in 1998, coaching for a year under Nick Saban at Michigan State in 1999 and selling plastics in Cleveland in 2000.

With the Patriots' hot start, Josh McDaniels has every reason to smile. (Maddie Meyer/Getty Images)

With the Patriots’ hot start, Josh McDaniels has every reason to smile. (Maddie Meyer/Getty Images)

Timing in life can be everything, especially if you’re in the NFL.

To Patriots offensive coordinator Josh McDaniels, it was just about perfect in 2001.

That was his first year in the NFL after graduating John Carroll University in 1998, coaching for a year under Nick Saban at Michigan State in 1999 and selling plastics in Cleveland in 2000.

Bill Belichick hired him as a personnel assistant in 2001 and he got the best understudy job in the football world. That season ended with the Patriots shocking the Rams in Super Bowl XXXVI and began one of the greatest dynasties in modern NFL history. This week, with the transplanted Rams back in Foxboro for just the second time since that epic meeting in New Orleans, the Patriots will commemorate their first title with a 15th anniversary reunion of the ’01 team at Gillette Stadium.

“That was my first year. The thing I remember the most is that year was one of the greatest examples of just, team, and being able to do what you need to do to try to win each week,” McDaniels recalled Tuesday in a conference call. “It didn’t matter how, didn’t matter who got the credit. Didn’t seem like anybody cared what they were asked to do just as long as everybody did their job.

“What a great way to come and learn that first year from a lot of really coaches, good people in the personnel department. It taught me a whole lot about how this league works, how our organization runs, the discipline and detail that it requires to be good on a week-to-week basis and the commitment it takes to really try to compete at a championship level.”

McDaniels was promoted to a defensive coaching assistant in 2002 and worked with the defensive backs in 2003. In 2004, he became the team’s quarterbacks coach. McDaniels has been with the Patriots for all four of their Super Bowl championships.

After Charlie Weis left after the 2004 season, McDaniels started calling plays and then officially became the offensive coordinator in 2006. With Tom Brady at the helm, McDaniels called plays for one of the most prolific offenses in modern pro history, totaling 75 touchdowns in the 16-0 regular season of 2007. McDaniels helped Matt Cassel execute the offense in ’08 and lead the Patriots to an 11-5 mark before getting hired as Denver’s head coach in 2009. He left the Rams, ironically enough, in the middle of New England’s 2011 run to Super Bowl XLVI, and has been the offensive coordinator ever since the 2012 season.

“It’ll be great to see a lot of the guys that are coming back,” McDaniels said. “I look forward to doing that. And really looking forward to getting started with our preparation for this week’s game with our players [Wednesday].”

There were reports two weeks ago that McDaniels would turn down head coaching jobs to wait on New England’s to eventually open up, something McDaniels later denied, adding he would love to get another head coaching shot down the road.

Blog Author: 
Mike Petraglia

Tom Brady isn’t afraid to show his love for his college team, the Michigan Wolverines, even going back to Ann Arbor to be a honorary captain one weekend while he was serving his four-game suspension this season.

Tom Brady went back to Michigan earlier this year. (Rick Osentoski/USA Today Sports)

Tom Brady went back to Michigan earlier this year. (Rick Osentoski/USA Today Sports)

Tom Brady isn’t afraid to show his love for his college team, the Michigan Wolverines, even going back to Ann Arbor to be a honorary captain one weekend while he was serving his four-game suspension this season.

They had their biggest game of the year this past weekend against Ohio State, but fell 30-27 in double overtime, which was one of the best college football games of the year.

Brady and the Patriots were traveling to New Jersey for their game against the Jets and thanks to Chris Long on the Rich Eisen Show Monday, it was revealed Brady and the team didn’t get to actually watch the final seconds of the game as the Internet went out on the plane as the team was taking off.

“It went zero dark thirty and I just really felt for those guys,” Long said. “They were very invested in that game. They were emotionally all over it. All of a sudden people were staring at their phones, like their jaws dropped. I think it was that third down where the kid was running around, right before he got it on fourth down. I think that was when the TVs went dark. Tom kept his cool, but at the end of the day the home team got the win.”

Added Long: “Guys were freaking out, scrambling to get the Gamecast. It was chaos and I was watching a movie on my laptop without the sound and I could just watch people’s reactions.”

Once the result was known, it was clear Brady wasn’t too thrilled with the result.

“Not well, actually,” Long said. “Tom didn’t seem happy so it was obvious to me Tom was having a rough Saturday.”

Brady talked about the game Monday morning on Kirk & Callahan, agreeing with Jim Harbaugh that Michigan was at the end of some poor calls late in the game.

“I thought they did, too,” Brady said. “If that game is in Ann Arbor, I think it is a different outcome. At least it is a rivalry again. For so many years I bet all the guys from Ohio State and I’ve had to pay them for so many years — all these bets. At least this game was competitive and went down to the end. It was a good game. I wish we could have pulled it out. They made some good plays at the end, the Buckeyes did. Coach Harbaugh has got the team going and it’s going to be a great rivalry for a lot of years.”

Blog Author: 
Ryan Hannable

rotobahn-logoWelcome to the Week 13 waiver wire. It’s white-knuckle time for a lot of fantasy teams. First-round byes and playoff spots are at stake in most leagues, so my focus this week will be on players who can move the needle and make a difference.

As always, I will be posting an expanded waiver wire over at Rotobahn along with a quick podcast. Both will be posted this afternoon. It should be helpful for those of you playing in deeper formats or for those who have acute Week 13 needs. The final update will be at 7 p.m., so you’ll have time to digest it before making tonight’s bids or claims.

I will have full lineup rankings posted at Rotobahn in advance of Thursday’s game with the usual weekend update before Sunday’s games.

The ownership rates listed for each player were sourced from Yahoo!

QUARTERBACKS

Colin Kaepernick, 49ers, 24 percent

He’s an erratic passer, but in Chip Kelly’s offense he’s a fantasy star because he is featured as both a runner and a passer. He’s got 373 rushing yards on the year so far, and that’s quite a bit when you consider that he was a backup for the first five weeks. This week Kaepernick visits the Bears, and that’s a green-light matchup.

Ryan Fitzpatrick, Jets, 16 percent

He’s got the Colts this week, so he is a very solid play. If you are a Marcus Mariota owner in need of an option, you could do a lot worse then Fitz in Week 13. He has enough weapons and the Jets should have Nick Mangold back, which means they will run it better. That should set up Quincy Enunwa and Brandon Marshall in the play-action game.

Carson Wentz, Eagles, 37 percent

His matchups over the next three weeks are pretty good for the pass, so Wentz is a pretty good backup option. He’s been throwing more, and he ran for his first touchdown in Week 12. It won’t be his last. The Eagles visit the Bengals this week.

Ryan Tannehill, Dolphins, 28 percent

He’s gained a measure of functionality the last few weeks. Touchdown passes are up, but yardage still leaves something to be desired. He’s a reasonably good QB2 option if you need one. His schedule is mediocre, but this week’s matchup with the Ravens is not bad for the pass, and he gets the Jets in Week 15.

RUNNING BACKS

Dion Lewis, Patriots, 57 percent

We saw more of him last week than we did in Week 11. Lewis was able to show off some of his signature skills — showing his trademark quickness and ability to make sharp ankle-breaking cuts. If he stays healthy his role will grow because the Patriots need playmakers right now with both Ron Gronkowski and Martellus Bennett banged up. I think Lewis already is worthy of RB2 status in PPR leagues and should be owned in all leagues.

Tim Hightower, Saints, 57 percent

If he happens to be available, and you need an RB2 or flex option, make him a priority because he has a very nice matchup this week at home vs. the Lions.

Wendell Smallwood, Eagles, 49 percent

He has a good matchup this week with a struggling Bengals squad. The Bengals will be without A.J. Green and Gio Bernard, so the Eagles should be protecting a lead. If Ryan Mathews misses another game, as I suspect he will, Smallwood, who has looked very good in recent weeks, could be in for a solid outing.

Kenneth Dixon, Ravens, 29 percent

He’s now in a timeshare with Terrance West, and if you are in a PPR league, I think Dixon could be the more valuable half of that backfield down the stretch. His natural quickness has returned after an early-season knee injury. He has some breakout potential. Has a matchup at home with the Dolphins this week and visits the Patriots in Week 14.

Jerick McKinnon, Vikings, 42 percent

He’s looked healthier the last two games and clearly is the lead back save for goal-line situations, where the team seemingly is committed to using Matt Asiata at all costs. In fairness, the big back gets the job done pretty well in tight. He has a solid matchup with Dallas on Thursday night.

Ameer Abdullah, Lions, 11 percent, and Adrian Peterson, Vikings, 43 percent

In some leagues, you may have nothing of substance on the waiver wire due to deep rosters or a large league or both. If that’s the case, you can consider stashing Abdullah or Peterson. Both are risky propositions, but if you are light in the run game but still a playoff team, you can stash one of them and pray. At this time Abdullah is the better bet for 2016 value, and he’d return to a near lead role. Peterson’s best-case scenario has him coming back Week 15, and that’s looking sketchy right now. Abdullah could see game action a tad sooner, so he’s probably the guy to add. It’s not out of the question that he could be startable by Week 15.

Rex Burkhead, Bengals, 4 percent

He played a lot last week because Jeremy Hill had an in-game ankle tweak. As I suspected, Burkhead looked very good and was effective as a runner and as a receiver when given chances. He’s a nice add in deeper leagues if you have running back issues. This guy is a very underrated talent, and we won’t see Gio Bernard until 2017.

WIDE RECEIVERS

Sammy Watkins, Bills, 72 percent

Normally I don’t list players with only 28 percent availability, but Watkins can be the WR1 on a given week. That’s the No. 1 overall receiver. He’s a huge priority if he happens to be available. He has a great closing schedule, too.

Quincy Enunwa, Jets, 28 percent

The Jets have a nice schedule the rest of the way, and they gets the Colts this week, which is a sweet matchup for any receiver. Enunwa is an excellent receiver to target for short-term help, but he can play for you every week the rest of the way if need be.

Tyreek Hill, Chiefs, 37 percent

He’s had a chance at extended playing time the last few weeks with Jeremy Maclin injured, and he’s really knocked it out of the park. I doubt they will put Hill back in the box when Maclin gets back — probably this week. Hill will cut into Chris Conley’s playing time, and he’ll continue to get plenty of snaps and touches. Hill needs to be owned in all leagues. He could be a nice play this week against Atlanta.

Taylor Gabriel, Falcons, 7 percent

I woke up late on Gabriel, but if you were following on Twitter, you got a heads-up in time to use him on DraftKings. Gabriel is a big play waiting to happen right now, with the team having no choice but to focus on Julio Jones. The field is always unbalanced, and Atlanta has a strong ground game as well. Gabriel is a nightmare in space in much the same way Dion Lewis is for the Patriots. He can move the needle this week if you need a flex option or WR3.

Corey Coleman, Browns, 52 percent

His touchdown last week was a thing of beauty. Coleman can really get out of a break, and he’s beyond fast. The Browns may not have another lead this season, so Coleman should see more and more targets as Cleveland looks to 2017 and beyond. This kid is a future star. He faces a not-so-good Bengals secondary this week.

Will Fuller, Texans, 44 percent

He’s exciting, but his quarterback is a nightmare. So much so that you wonder if he could be replaced at some point soon. Either way, Fuller finally is running free and easy, and he should be owned in all leagues as a high-upside WR3 option. His remaining schedule is about as good as it gets. I expect some big games.

Tyler Boyd, Bengals, 50 percent

He has a medium matchup with the Eagles this week, and he has a super-sweet matchup with the Browns in Week 14. With A.J. Green out at least one more game, Boyd is a player to own in all PPR leagues.

Marquess Wilson, Bears, 1 percent

He has a nice two-week window until Alshon Jeffery’s return. In that span he can be used as a WR3 or flex if you have the need. The Bears have the 49ers on tap for Week 13, so there’s solid short-term opportunity for those in win-now mode. Wilson’s always had the talent, but staying healthy has been a bugaboo. He’s healthy right now and available in most leagues.

Malcom Mitchell, Patriots, 3 percent

He only played on 47 percent of the offensive snaps, so while the two touchdowns are exciting, he’s still a poor bet for consistent fantasy production. Still, with three scores in the last two games, Mitchell is a player to own in 12-team leagues. If his recent outburst earns him more consistent playing time, he could be an asset down the stretch.

Dontrelle Inman, Chargers, 5 percent

He is a viable option as Travis Benjamin works his way back to top form, and this week’s home matchup with Tampa Bay is a good one. Inman can be your WR3 this week if you need him, and his schedule the rest of the way is top shelf.

Dorial Green-Beckham, Eagles, 5 percent

Jordan Matthews injured his ankle on Monday night and could be facing some time off. This is a good time to add Green-Beckham, especially if you rely on Matthews, because Green’s targets will almost assuredly go up if Matthews sits out.

TIGHT ENDS

Vernon Davis, Washington, 9 percent

Jordan Reed suffered a somewhat serious shoulder injury in Week 12. His status for Week 13 is in doubt. If he cannot go, Davis becomes a very strong short-term option. If you own Reed, this is the way to protect your fantasy posterior. He’s also a nice flier if you are looking for a better option than say … Coby Fleener or Dennis Pitta. Even with Reed healthy, Davis has carved out a significant role, so he’ll be a great bet to produce in Reed’s absence. Washington visits Arizona this week.

Ladarius Green, Steelers, 10 percent

He’s no lock, but you get a lot of upside with Green, who is ready for a full workload in an offense that makes stars out of players with his skill set. He’s a great way to use your last roster spot, especially if tight end is an area of concern for you.

Vance McDonald, 49ers, 10 percent

He’s been getting very consistent targets over the last month, and the 49ers offense is starting to have more success with a surging Colin Kaepernick at the helm. McDonald has very nice matchups the next two weeks with the Bears and then the Jets.

C.J. Fiedorowicz, Texans, 35 percent

Has a nice matchup with Green Bay this week, and he’s getting consistent targets, so you know you’ll get some points. Fiedorowicz has a solid chance at a score this Sunday. He can help you if you have a weakness at tight end.

Blog Author: 
Peter Davidson

Thanks to Patriots.com, we got an inside look at the Patriots locker room following the win over the Jets on Sunday.

It appeared to take a lot out of the players as they appeared spent immediately after the win.

“We just have to keep grinding,” Bill Belichick told the team. “Every single day is important. Every single wee is important. Let’s put everything we’ve got into it. We have to work our ass off every day. Work our ass off every day. Great job, fellas.”

In place of special teams captain Matthew Slater, who was out with a foot injury, Devin McCourty led the team breakdown afterwards, eluding to Tom Brady’s 200th career win.

“Hey fellas, he tied a record? Two-hundo,” McCourty said. “Congratulations, TB12.”

“It’s because of you guys,” Brady replied.

To see the complete video, click here.

Blog Author: 
Ryan Hannable

With the stretch drive looming, the AFC playoff picture is starting to come into sharper focus. Here’s a snapshot of the current conference playoff chase, with a look at the top eight teams in the conference, their record, where they stand currently in the race for the postseason and their remaining schedule.