Peter King of Sports Illustrated and NBC Sports made his weekly appearance on the Mut & Merloni show and talked about the how the Patriots will approach the final two games of the regular season.
New England travels to Jacksonville on Sunday for a game against the 2-12 Jaguars, and King said it isn't likely the Pats will lack motivation despite the lack of a high-quality opponent.
"The reason why I don't think they slip up is because there are too many young players on defense who are still trying to make their way, make an impression, work for playing time," King said. "Aqib Talib is not going to take it easy because it's the Jacksonville Jaguars and they're supposed to beat them 45-3. I'd always be stunned if you're playing Muskingum College this week if Tom Brady took it easy on anybody. So, no, I doubt it sincerely."
Added King: "I just don't think [Bill Belichick is] going to treat the last two games any differently, except maybe to rest guys who need to be rested or maybe to get Ryan Mallett some work."
Rob Gronkowski reportedly will miss Sunday's game, and King said the Pats need to be cautious with the tight end's return from an arm injury.
"The only way I'd play him against Miami next week is if he absolutely was very close to 100 percent and he felt like it was advantageous to get a game in before the playoffs started," King said. "Otherwise I would leave him on the shelf. I'd treat the last two games like the fourth preseason game for him. The only way you play him is if there's some benefit to the team and to him. I don't see how there would be because obviously he's done all this so many times."
Offensive coordinator Josh McDaniels is rumored to be a hot candidate for head coaching openings. McDaniels previously spent two years in Denver as a head coach but it ended with his dismissal late in the 2011 season.
"I talked to Josh quite a bit during that time and after he left [Denver], and I know that he felt that there were some things he would do differently a second time around," King said. "I think what happens when you take a job for the first time, the one thing that you do is you think about it for a long time and you think how you'd handle certain things. Josh McDaniels saw Bill Belichick handle things a certain way for so long that I think he went into Denver and he handled a lot of things in the Belichick way. I think he'd handle a lot of things differently."
Added King: "I think he learned some things. I think he also learned that he's got to be more himself. Because I know people around this league who for years have known Josh McDaniels and have really liked him and had great respect for him. He's not one of those guys who is an autocratic, put-his-heel-on-your-throat guy. He just never has been. He's a guy who's a conciliator and all that. I think that a lot of people in Denver looked at him as a guy who tried to be Belichick Jr. when just being Josh McDaniels, in my mind, would have been very much good enough. And I think if he gets a second chance that's one of the things he will have learned."
Fred Smerlas, Steve DeOssie and Butch Stearns break down all aspects of the Patriots win over the Lions, and take your calls as well.
WEEI.com's Mike Petraglia and Chris Price break down the Patriots' 34-9 win over the Lions, the team's seventh win in a row. The defense stepped up again and now gets a crack at Aaron Rodgers next Sunday.
The guys give their final thoughts and predictions leading up to the 1pm matchup with Detroit.
How have the Celtics looked after a couple weeks? Could they be a playoff team? These questions and more...
Sam and Ben talk with Greg Dickerson about how fun this year's Celtics team is to watch as well Jeff Green trade ideas.
Kyle Draper joins Danny Picard to talk about the Celtics chances this season in the Eastern Conference, last Wednesday's home opener blowout against the Nets, and Rajon Rondo's future in Boston
Red Sox beat writer Brian MacPherson joins Danny Picard to talk about the Red Sox going after Jon Lester and other free agents.
The Hot Stove guys are talking about Pablo Sandoval and Jon Lester's contract offers from the Red Sox. They then por one out for the Giancarlo Stanton rumors being put to bed.
The Hot Stove boys are back again, talking about Jon Lester, Pablo Sandoval, Giancarlo Stanton's b
Dale and Michael get Jack Edwards' 'state of the B' report and talk about the win over the Blues at the Garden on Tuesday.
Andy Brickley joined the show and touched on last night's convincing win over a good team, Matt Bartkowski needing a wake up call, and the NHL review process.
Pierre joins the guys to talk about the Bruins struggles, the NHL franchise in Las Vegas, and the return of the glow puck!
BC's head coach joined the show to preview the Florida State game.
Rodney Harrison previewed the Patriots and Lions with the guys.
The top stories of the as recounted by Kirk Minihane.
Detective Fauria tells us the infamous gloryhole story from VICE squad and other stories Christian's past.
Just out of practice, Kyle Arrington joins the guys to preview Pats-Lions
Christian in Foxboro returns, this time he's trolling Detroit sports radio station 97.1 The Ticket's Stoney and Bill show . Christian rips Lions fans and asks why his nephew, Joseph, isn't getting the ball more.
We check in with the playmaker Michael Irvin for his weekly update on all things NFL. We talk to Michael about the Raiders first win, the LeGarrette Blount saga, and how the Pats will do against the Lions this weekend.
Michael and Dale discuss Jonas Gray's tardiness, and try and predict how the running-back will respond and make up for his error.
We talk with Tom E Curran and debate whether or not the Patriots current performance is more reminiscent of the 2004 or 2007 Patriots.
Brandon covers the NFL, particularly the Detroit Lions for Bleacher Report. He gives us his thoughts on this Sunday's game and how the Lions stack up against the Patriots.
Mikey, Villani, Lenny and Kerry Byrne are talking Patriots-Lions and how the team this year stacks up to Patriots teams of the past.
Some more Musical Mikey Magic to get ready for Sunday's Patriots-Lions game.
Jerry Thornton's first podcast explores sports stories that would make for interesting 30 for 30 documentaries.
Andy Merritt of the New England Hockey Journal joined WEEI.com’s Scott McLaughlin to talk about the play of Vermont and Providence, as well as other happenings around Hockey East. Merrimack coach Mark Dennehy also joined the show to talk about his team’s good start, his freshman class and how he uses possession stats.
Joining the show today Mut the all-purpose back of WEEI. We talk about players we have hated over the years as well as Rajon Rondo and what is ailing the Celtics.
We check in with the playmaker Michael Irvin for his weekly update on all things NFL. We talk to Michael about the Raiders first win, the LeGarrette Blount saga, and how the Pats will do against the Lions this weekend.More from this show
Christian in Foxboro returns, this time he's trolling Detroit sports radio station WDFN's Shep in the Morning Show. Christian rips Lions fans and asks why his nephew, Joseph, isn't getting the ball more.More from this show
Danny opens the show on Saturday afternoon looking at Sunday's matchup against the Detroit Lions. The Pats added former RB LeGarrette Blount to the line up. Calvin Johnson brings up an interesting match up for the DB's. Jonas Gray showed up late on Friday. And could Reggie Bush be tough for the LB's to cover?More from this show
Michael and Dale discuss Jonas Gray's tardiness, and try and predict how the running-back will respond and make up for his error.More from this show