Chris Long is a free agent this offseason. (John David Mercer/USA TODAY Sports)

Chris Long is a free agent this offseason. (John David Mercer/USA TODAY Sports)

Last week, Chris Long shredded a New York Daily News columnist for writing him a dopey open letter about skipping the Patriots’ upcoming White House visit. On Thursday, he set his sights on folks who are bashing him for his plan to boycott the proceedings.

Long is one of six Patriots players who say they won’t be heading to the White House for a photo-op with President Donald Trump later this year. Though not all of the players said their decisions are political –– Dont’a Hightower also skipped in 2015 when Barack Obama was in office –– it’s fair to assume Long isn’t Trump’s biggest fan.

“I’m just not doing it,” he said recently on Barstool Sports’ “Pardon my Take” podcast when asked why he doesn’t want to go. “I’ve got plenty of serious political reasons that probably don’t belong on this show, but I’m just not doing it. America’s an awesome country, man. Everybody knows that. That’s why I have this choice.”

Since sportswriting is now a prominently liberal profession, Long didn’t hear a lot of disapproval about his decision in the media. But on Twitter, he decided to lash out at those who have been critical of him. Ironically, this shows Long is just as sensitive as our whiner-in-chief, who he presumably loathes. (That doesn’t mean it’s not entertaining, however. It’s always nice to see rubes get put in their place.)

The primary focus of Long’s charity is to provide clean drinking water to communities in East Africa, for what it’s worth.

Despite that tweet storm, Long’s best moment on social media remains when he issued a biting rebuttal to Roger Goodell’s ludicrous analogy about couch sitting being just as dangerous as playing football.

“I am #blessed to survive a night on the couch. But I knew the risks,” he wrote after Super Bowl 50.

Blog Author: 
Alex Reimer
Hour 4. Darrelle Revis has gotten himself into a lot of trouble in Pennsylvania. Red Sox ownership holds a press conference from Spring Training.

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[0:08:20] ... would not bashing on the doors last 48 hours to defend. Audrey Ahman Green for those counts 6177797937. Speaking of New York. Cold Lee Harvey easiest pin staff writer. Spoke this morning with Revis is attorney ...
[0:17:04] ... able basketball I never saw Larry Bird play. But to insinuate that Isiah Thomas is having the kind of view Larry Bird has ever had is not some medium isn't one category and what's points per game scoring late games you can somewhat you wanna go kind of equate to Larry Bird five rebounds defense passing. Everything else. Larry Bird has an unranked teams and every other season telling these Isiah Thomas fans tonight. I'm you guys can call if you want I will toll may that was wrong with but Isiah Thomas senior receives on top 3040 play whatever dead wrong. But the truly great players. It's not it's up to that a game ...
[0:18:22] ... perform well Gary and she got the conversation with this guy about Isiah Thomas. Times have you ever eat up my hair. Then I'm OK. Okay well I covered the third night. Yeah. It was a ...






Hour 3. Mut's history as a radio host is revisited. Kirk's latest podcast features some in depth talk about radio in Boston with Glenn Ordway.
Hour 2. The guys discuss whether the Patriots should consider trading Jimmy Garoppolo. President Trump held an interesting press conference.
Hour 1. Kirk and Mut talk about the controversial foul that cost the Celtics the game last night.

Drew Bledsoe used to wear No. 11 for the Patriots. Julian Edelman wears No. 11 for the Patriots now. And apparently, Bledsoe doesn’t think the charismatic wideout is his legacy well.

Edelman, who prides himself as a fashionista, is rocking some unruly facial hair these days. On Twitter, Bledsoe said he should clean it up.

After making perhaps the best catch in Super Bowl history, Edelman can look like a hobo if he likes. But this writer agrees with Bledsoe: the clean-shaven or scruffy look suits him best.

Blog Author: 
Alex Reimer
Aly Raisman took home two silver medals at the 2016 Summer Olympics as well. (Robert Deutsch/USA TODAY Sports)

Aly Raisman took home two silver medals at the 2016 Summer Olympics as well. (Robert Deutsch/USA TODAY Sports)

Olympic gold medalist Aly Raisman made her debut in Sports Illustrated‘s Swimsuit edition this week. She says it was a liberating experience.

The Needham native participated in the magazine’s “What I Model” campaign, explaining in an Instagram video why she decided to take part in the annual modeling shoot.

“I think it’s such an empowering feeling to be at a photo shoot and to know that your body’s not perfect, that you have insecurities just like everyone else,” she said. “But you’re still having so much fun because you know you’re unique and beautiful in your own way.”

Raisman, 22, also says it makes her feel proud of her body.

“I also model because when I was younger I used to get made fun of by the boys in my class,” she said. “They told me that I was too strong, that I looked manly, and that I was anorexic and looked like I was on steroids. Of course, that really bothered me, and I used to hate the way that I looked, which, looking back, it makes me feel really sad. But that’s why I’m so proud to be in the SI Swim 2017 issue because at 22 years old I feel strong and beautiful in my own way and there is no perfect body type.”

The U.S. Women’s Gymnastics team took home the gold at last summer’s Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro. Raisman’s teammate, Simone Biles, also posed for SI‘s Swimsuit issue this year.

Blog Author: 
Alex Reimer

Good morning, here is your Friday Morning Mashup. For the latest news, start at our WEEI.com home page or click here for the top stories and scores from our news wire.

Good morning, here is your Friday Morning Mashup. For the latest news, start at our WEEI.com home page or click here for the top stories and scores from our news wire.

FRIDAY’S BROADCAST HIGHLIGHTS:
NBA: NBA All-Star celebrity game, 7 p.m. (ESPN)
NBA: NBA All-Star Rising Stars Challenge, 9 p.m. (TNT)
NHL: Pittsburgh at Columbus, 7 p.m. (NHL)
College basketball: Kent State at Akron, 7 p.m. (ESPNU)
College basketball: Valparaiso at Oakland, 7 p.m. (ESPN2)
College basketball: Fairfield at Quinnipiac, 9 p.m. (ESPNU)
College basketball: VCU at Richmond, 9 p.m. (ESPN2)
College basketball: California at Stanford, 10 p.m. (FS1)
Women’s college basketball: Xavier at Villanova, 7:30 p.m. (FS1)

AROUND THE WEB:

— MLB commissioner Rob Manfred spoke at the Grapefruit League media day Thursday and said nothing about the current state of baseball “needs to be fixed.”

He then went on to say the game needs to be changed “so that baseball means as much to the next generation as it does to our generation” and offered some ideas for changes.

Those ideas included requiring managers to stick to a time limit when deciding whether to challenge a call, “reasonable limits” on how long umpires in the replay center can look at replay angles before deciding whether to overturn a call and raising the strike zone.

Manfred also said he is in favor of experimenting with starting extra innings with a runner on second in the minor leagues, but said “we don’t expect to ever apply at the major league level.”

“Whenever you change something, there’s a risk,” Manfred went on. “We know that, even from the little rule changes that we’ve made … There’s a period of adjustment. But you know what? We get through those periods of adjustment. Modern civilization does not come to an end. And the game is better at the end of it.”

— It’s not every day you get to see a Hall of Famer and four-time Cy Young winner prank the reigning NL MVP, but it happened this week when Greg Maddux pulled one over on Kris Bryant.

Bryant thought he was filming a promotional video for Red Bull while Maddux disguised himself as a sound guy. Maddux played the role throughout the day, offering Bryant water and hand sanitizer, but it wasn’t until the batting practice pitcher had to leave and the “sound guy” filled in that Bryant thought something was up.

“He might be better than the other guy,” Bryant said.

When Maddux asked Bryant to autograph his bat for Greg Maddux, the jig was up.

Wacky stuff.

QUOTE OF THE DAY: “Everything. I have to prove everything. Especially when you’re coming from an off year after the injuries and you come back and you have to prove a lot of things to the fans, to the team, to your teammates, to the sport. You have to prove a lot of things out there on the field.” — Pablo Sandoval, on what he has to prove this season

Blog Author: 
Lucy Burdge
Villani and Thornton are talking about the Patriots off season, and they have some notable players hitting free agency, such as LB Dont'a Hightower, and they discuss who, if anyone will get the franchise tag.