FOXBORO -- Bill Belichick didn't mention whether or not he got comp meals at his Connecticut restaurant, but he did speak very fondly of Bobby Valentine on Friday, one day after the 61-year-old was introduced at Fenway as the 45th manager in Red Sox history.

FOXBORO -- Linebacker Brandon Spikes (knee) and offensive tackle Sebastian Vollmer (back, foot) were the only two players missing from the start of Patriots' practice Thursday afternoon, held on the upper fields behind Gillette Stadium. The session, held in sweats and shells, was one of the final practices of the week as New England prepares for a Sunday afternoon matchup with the Indianapolis Colts. For mpre Patriots news, check out

Tom Brady was a guest on "Inside the NFL" on Showtime Wednesday. The Patriots quarterback was asked about Aaron Rodgers, who leads the NFL this season with 33 TD passes and a passer rating of 127.7, a number that would shatter the existing record.

Tom Brady was named AFC Offensive Player of the Month on Thursday, the fifth time in his career the Patriots quarterback has captured the honor. 

Brady completed 93-of-149 pass attempts for 1,266 yards with 10 touchdowns and two interceptions in November, leading the Patriots to a 3-1 record. His passer rating for the month was 106.3. For the season, Brady ranks second in the NFL with 28 TDs, 3,627 passing yards and a passer rating of 105.1.

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FOXBORO -- There are two ways you can look at the improved statistics for the Patriots’ defense.

One, since the ugly loss to the Steelers in Pittsburgh on Oct. 30, the group has started to come together as a collective unit. Since that defeat, the numbers have improved in several defensive areas, and continue to trend in a positive direction.

FOXBORO -- Right tackle Sebastian Vollmer was the only member of the roster to miss Wednesday's walkthrough in sweats on the upper grass fields behind Gillette Stadium. The offensive lineman, who injured his right ankle in the second quarter on Sunday in Philadelphia and left after the game in a protective walking boot, was out with what the team listed as a back and foot injury. However,  two faces who hadn't seen the practice field for several weeks were in attendance: linebackers Brandon Spikes and Dane Fletcher. Here's the complete injury report:

FOXBORO -- Offensive lineman Sebastian Vollmer was the only player not spotted at Patriots practice outside on the upper grass fields on Wednesday at Gillette Stadium. Vollmer injured his right ankle in the second quarter on Sunday in Philadelphia and left after the game in a protective walking boot. 

The team conducted a walkthough in sweats but no shells, pads or helmets in beginning on-field preparations for the winless Colts this Sunday in Foxboro.

FOXBORO -- Realizing he would be asked often about motivating his team against an 0-11 Colts team this weekend, Patriots head coach Bill Belichick came out on the attack to questions Wednesday about the quality of New England's opponent at Gillette Stadium. In short, Belichick is telling his players to forget about Indianapolis' record.

The Patriots announced Wednesday they have signed defensive back Nate Jones, who is in his eighth NFL season. Terms of the contract were not announced.

Julian Edelman’s recent two-way ability sparked a lot of conversation about how the Patriots occasionally utilize players at unique positions.