SAN FRANCISCO — Tom Brady will be at the Super Bowl after all.

Joe Montana, not Tom Brady, named quarterback of the Super Bowl 50 Golden Team. (Tom Pennington/Getty Images)

Joe Montana, not Tom Brady, named quarterback of the Super Bowl 50 Golden Team. (Tom Pennington/Getty Images)

SAN FRANCISCO — Tom Brady will be at the Super Bowl after all.

Brady will be on hand to be honored as a past Super Bowl MVP, a source confirms to WEEI’s Ryan Hannable. The news was first reported by the Wall Street Journal’s Kevin Clark.

The NFL is honoring all previous 43 winners of the award and, despite speculation that Brady would skip the event, the Patriots quarterback will be on the field as a three-time winner.

Brady was the MVP of Super Bowls XXXVI, XXXVIII and XLIX. Brady and his his childhood hero Joe Montana have three apiece to lead the way. The only other players with multiple honors are Terry Bradshaw (XIII, XIV) and Eli Manning (XLII, XLVI).

Thursday’s report comes on the heels of the news this week that Montana beat out Brady as the Super Bowl 50 “Golden Team” quarterback.

Blog Author: 
Mike Petraglia

2007 Patriots team far more superior than current Panthers squad.</p>
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While it is unlikely Tom Brady will comment on Roger Goodell’s recent remarks on the NFL doing “spot checks” and not a research study taking PSI readings from footballs in random games over the course of the the 2015 season, his dad is doing the talking for him.

Tom Brady Sr. doesn't know if his son would attend Super Bowl 50. (Elsa/Getty Images)

Tom Brady Sr. doesn’t know if his son will attend Super Bowl 50. (Elsa/Getty Images)

While it is unlikely Tom Brady will comment on Roger Goodell’s recent remarks on the NFL doing “spot checks” and not a research study taking PSI readings from footballs in random games over the course of the the 2015 season, his dad is doing the talking for him.

“What the league did this year was what we do with a lot of rules and policies designed to protect the integrity of the game and that is to create a deterrent effect — that we do spot checks to prevent and make sure the clubs understand that we’€™re watching these issues,” Goodell said on The Rich Eisen Show Tuesday. “It wasn’€™t a research study. They simply were spot checks.”

Goodell didn’t say if the league would be releasing the data.

“That’s laughable. It’s just laughable,” Brady Sr. said in an interview with Christopher Gasper of The Boston Globe. “I don’t unfortunately think it was in the league’s best interest to release something that exonerated Tom. All the rest of it is nonsense. It’s air.”

It’s been a long year for both Brady and his family. The quarterback’s dad wished it would have ended differently on the field.

“It’s been a crazy, difficult year. It’s disappointing we didn’t cap it off in Santa Clara,” Brady Sr. said.

As tough as the year has been on everyone, Brady Sr. said he and his wife are trying to not let it affect them on a day-to-day basis.

“My wife and I have decided as it affected us last year, we’re not going to let it affect us moving forward,” he said. “We’re trying to forgive an obvious plastering of our son’s reputation. We’re trying to say, you know what, forgive and forget. As a Christian, it is eating me up inside. It ate my wife up. It’s had to do. It’s easy to be bitter.”

As of Wednesday night, Brady Sr. did not know if his son would attend Super Bowl 50, as part of the NFL honoring the previous Super Bowl MVPs.

Blog Author: 
Ryan Hannable

Deflategate is back in the news this week as Roger Goodell said the NFL conducted “spot checks,” not a research study this season when testing PSIs at random games this season.

Deflategate is back in the news this week as Roger Goodell said the NFL conducted “spot checks,” not a research study this season when testing PSIs at random games this season. Goodell said there were no violations and didn’t make any comments on whether or not the league would release any data from the checks.

Wednesday night, appearing on Sirius XM radio, vice president of NFL officiating Dean Blandino was asked about the testing and he said the league is still “evaluating” the information collected.

“We did spot checks throughout the year and we measured PSI levels and recorded that information,” Blandino said. “Right now we’re evaluating the information. We didn’t have any violations this year, but again, we’re still in that evaluation phase to look at the information and then we’ll see what that tells us.”

This topic is likely to continue over the next few days, as Goodell gives his state of the league address and takes questions on Friday afternoon.

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

Blog Author: 
Ryan Hannable
Rob Gronkowski is considered the most dangerous tight end in football. (Rob Foldy/Getty Images)

Rob Gronkowski is considered the most dangerous tight end in football. (Rob Foldy/Getty Images)

SAN FRANCISCO — Rob Gronkowski is widely considered the most dangerous tight end in football. He’s also the biggest nightmare for a defensive back assigned to cover him, especially when he’s split wide from the line of scrimmage.

Hall of Fame corner Mike Haynes covered his share of great receivers in his day but rarely, if ever, a tight end in a game.

But in practice, that was a different story.

“I can’t ever remember ever playing being locked on a tight end,” Haynes told WEEI.com Wednesday at Super Bowl media headquarters. “But I did lock on Russ Francis in practice. They were trying to simulate some of the challenges he was going to face. I know how difficult that can be. I wouldn’t be welcoming that kind of challenge because of the weight difference, the height difference, the strength difference. And generally when you’re covering a guy like that size, if he turns around and looks at the quarterback, I can no longer see the quarterback because of his height and his width. It’s a challenge.”

But for as much as Patriots fans remember the hey-dey of Russ Francis and catching passes from Steve Grogan as a traditional tight end, there’s another former tight end Haynes thinks of as a comp to the 6-foot-6, 265-pound Rob Gronkowski: Don Hasselbeck, who stood an inch taller than Gronk but weighed 20 pounds less.

“It wasn’t something I had to do on a regular basis and I wouldn’t have been looking forward to do that on a regular basis. I actually think that Gronk is more built like Hasselbeck was than Russ Francis,” Haynes said. “He’s tall and a long-strider. A lot of times I wonder if they had used Don Hasselbeck the same way they use Gronkowski, what would he have been like? They didn’t. It was a different game in those days.”

Hasselbeck finished with 107 catches, 1,542 yards and 18 touchdowns in his nine-year NFL career that began in 1977 when he was selected in the second round by the Patriots. For some perspective, Gronkowski nearly had as many receiving touchdowns (17) in 2011 as Hasselbeck did for his career. Hasselbeck finished with 15 TD receptions in his six-plus seasons in New England.

Blog Author: 
Mike Petraglia

Bill Belichick can look to the Broncos and Panthers for some points of emphasis this offseason.</p>
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SAN FRANCISCO — According to one Hall of Fame cornerback, the sky is the limit for Malcolm Butler.

Mike Haynes was selected to the Pro Bowl nine times and eventually found his way to Canton as one of the best cornerbacks of the 1970s and 80s.