FOXBORO — In typical Matthew Slater fashion, even after signing a two-year contract extension with the Patriots through the end of the 2016 season, he would rather talk about the Patrots’ next opponent in the Packers, than himself.

“I’d love to be able to indulge in that, but we have to focus on playing the Packers this week,” Slater said.

The special teams specialist did give one comment on his contract, but that was as far as he would go.

“I don’t want to get into too much detail about it. I am so thankful for what the lord has done in my life and my career and develop me here as a player and as a man,” Slater said. “I am thankful for an opportunity to continue this development — I am thankful to the coaching staff and coach [Bill] Belichick and this organization for believing in me and appreciating a player like me, and guys like myself across this team. That being said, the focus here is on us preparing for Green Bay. That is all I am concerned with and I’d rather talk about that.”

Slater’s contract was set to expire at the end of the season. Even as strictly a special teamer, Slater has made a huge impact being a three-time Pro Bowl selection. He also serves as the team’s player representative.

“It means a lot. It definitely means a lot to me,” he said of being a member of the Patriots organization. “I really feel like God has blessed me with a tremendous opportunity and I take a lot of pride and am thankful for the opportunity I’ve had here to live out a childhood dream.”

Slater is looking forward to Sunday’s game in Green Bay against a tough Packers team and being able to play at the historic Lambeau Field.

“Excited about it,” he said. “A lot of history there and with Curley Lambeau and everything that this organization stands for. I don’t think the league would be where it is without a franchise like this so we’re excited about the challenge. All that being said, we’re going against one of the best teams in football. That is going to be a big challenge for us and we have to have a good week of preparation and have a good effort on Sunday.”

Blog Author: 
Ryan Hannable

FOXBORO — Darrelle Revis wasn’t about to mince words when it came to Aaron Rodgers.

Darrelle Revis and the Patriots have won seven straight heading into this weekend. (Jim Rogash/Getty Images)

Darrelle Revis and the Patriots have won seven straight heading into this weekend. (Jim Rogash/Getty Images)

FOXBORO — Darrelle Revis wasn’t about to mince words when it came to Aaron Rodgers.

“We believe that Aaron Rodgers is our biggest test yet,” Revis said of the Green Bay quarterback, who will square off against the Patriots Sunday at Lambeau Field.

“The guy is awesome,” added Revis. “We’re looking forward to it.”

New England will be looking to slow down a Green Bay offense that has been lights out over the last several weeks. The Packers are 5-0 at home, and in his five games at Lambeau this year, Rodgers is completing 67 percent of his passes, is averaging 284.8 passing yards per game and has 18 touchdowns and no picks, to go along with a passer rating of 138.1.

“They’re an impressive team,” Revis said of the Packers. “They’re tops in every category in the passing game.”

Rodgers leans heavily on the duo of Jordy Nelson and Randall Cobb. The 6-foot-3, 217-pound Nelson is eighth in the league in catches (68), fifth in targets (106) and receiving yards (1,066) and fourth in touchdown catches (nine). He’€™s only one of five receivers with at least 100 targets and 1,000 receiving yards, and has 18 catches for 329 yards and three touchdowns in his last three games. Cobb is a 5-foot-10, 192-pounder out of Kentucky who has 58 catches on 79 targets for 837 yards and a team-high 10 touchdowns.

“They always get open — that shows you they understand the game,” Revis said of the Nelson/Cobb combo. “They’re very experienced. They have a lot of chemistry with Rodgers.”

The Patriots have cruised through the first four games of a six-game stretch that many believe would come to define their season, with four straight wins against four straight divisional leaders in Chicago, Denver, Indy and Detroit. But defeating the Packers in Green Bay represents a sizable challenge — the Packers are unbeaten at home, have averaged 44 points per game and have won their games at home by an average of 27 points per game. That includes two games where they’ve put up more than 50 points.

“That’s a part of the NFL, the challenge,” Revis said. “It doesn’t matter what team you play. All 32 teams are good and you have to bring your ‘A’ game every Sunday. You have to play elite ball to win. Our schedule has been pretty tough but at the same time, it’s the schedule. You get challenged, and you have to stand up to the challenge.”

For more Patriots news, check out weei.com/patriots.

Blog Author: 
Christopher Price
Danny Aiken

Danny Aiken

FOXBORO — The Patriots made two significant additions to their practice squad the day before Thanksgiving.

The team signed tight end Xavier Grimble and long snapper Charley Hughlett to the unit. It’s the second appearance on the practice squad this season for Hughlett, who was signed to the New England practice squad on Sept. 1 and released two days later.

Hughlett provides depth behind current long snapper Danny Aiken, who had one bad snap Sunday and was punished by a cheap shot to the back of the head from Detroit’s C.J. Mosley on a late field goal attempt.

To make room for Grimble and Hughlett, the Patriots released linebacker Deontae Skinner and defensive back Daxton Swanson from the practice squad.

Grimble, 22, was originally signed by the New York Giants as a rookie free agent out of USC on May 15, 2014. The 6-foot-4, 261-pounder, was released by the Giants on Aug. 26 and signed to the San Francisco practice squad on Sept. 15. He was released from the 49ers practice squad on Nov. 18. In three seasons as USC, Grimble played in 38 games with 22 starts and caught 69 passes for 731 yards and 11 touchdowns.

Hughlett, 23, originally entered the NFL as a rookie free agent with the Dallas Cowboys out of Central Florida on April 30, 2012. The 6-foot-4, 251-pounder was released by Dallas on Aug. 27, 2012. He was re-signed by Dallas on Jan. 7, 2013 and released for a second time on May 29, 2013. He was signed by New England on March 19, 2014. After being released by New England in May, Hughlett was signed by Jacksonville on June 19, 2014, before being released on Aug. 25, 2014. Following his release from the New England practice squad, Hughlett spent one week on the Cleveland practice squad.

Skinner, 24, was originally signed by the Patriots as a rookie free agent out of Mississippi State on May 12, 2014. The 6-foot-2, 250-pounder, was released by the Patriots on Aug. 26 and signed to the practice squad on Sept. 1. He was signed to the 53-man roster from the practice squad on Sept. 13 and played in seven games with one start, accumulating 10 total tackles and three special teams tackles. He was released on Oct. 29 and signed back to the practice squad on Oct. 31.

Swanson, 23, was signed to the Patriots practice squad on Sept 1, 2014 and then released from the practice squad on Sept. 3, 2014 before being re-signed on Sept. 17. He was originally signed by the Patriots as a free agent on May 22, 2014. Swanson entered the NFL as a rookie free agent with the Indianapolis Colts on April 30, 2013, out of Sam Houston State. The 5-foot-11, 191-pounder was released by the Colts on Oct. 29, 2013 and was signed to the San Francisco 49ers practice squad on Nov. 18, 2013. He was released by San Francisco on May 12, 2014.

Blog Author: 
Mike Petraglia

FOXBORO — Chandler Jones was spotted at the Patriots walkthrough held Wednesday inside the Dana Farber Fieldhouse at Gillette Stadium. With snow falling outside, the team moved it’s practice indoors in advance of Sunday’s game in Green Bay.

Chandler Jones

Chandler Jones

FOXBORO — Chandler Jones was spotted at the Patriots walkthrough held Wednesday inside the Dana Farber Fieldhouse at Gillette Stadium. With snow falling outside, the team moved it’s practice indoors in advance of Sunday’s game in Green Bay.

The media was given limited access to the walkthrough and the players were not wearing jerseys so it was difficult to take a full attendance. A practice report will be released later this afternoon.

Long-snapper Charley Hughlett, who was added to the practice squad this morning, was present and was doing work before the session began.

It’s important to note regarding Jones, keep in mind it was a walkthrough and Sealver Siliga (foot) was present at last Wednesday’s walkthrough, but hasn’t yet come off of short-term injured reserve designated for return. Nevertheless, it’s a positive sign considering it was the first time he has been spotted since suffering the hip injury Week 7 against the Jets.

For more Patriots news, check out weei.com/patriots.

Blog Author: 
Ryan Hannable

FOXBORO — WEEI.com’s Mike Petraglia and Chris Price detail how the Patriots prepare for Aaron Rodgers and the Green Bay Packers Sunday at Lambeau Field.

Blog Author: 
Mike Petraglia
WEEI.com's Mike Petraglia and Chris Price preview Sunday's Patriots-Packers game, one that many are calling a possible Super Bowl preview.

[0:00:26] ... team besides themselves. In the NFL the Green Bay Packers led by Aaron Rodgers what are the keys to coming away with a win. First of all you're not too far removed from calling this a ...
[0:01:18] ... Bay office. I go well checked actually spoke out very highly of Aaron Rodgers but what I found interest thing. Here on Wednesday when bella check was done raving about him he's great he's this he's ...
[0:03:59] ... about the other side of the ball and the weapons not named Aaron Rodgers I think in the last Bill Belichick act about this today. Running back Eddie lacy is coming off a fantastic game he ...
[0:04:57] ... this year. Yeah they are interesting nugget I think about this game. Aaron Rodgers has been on the Green Bay roster the two previous times the patriots have played the Packers but it 2006. He of course was still behind Brett Favre and did not see any action at 35 nothing patriots victory. Up in Lambeau and then four years ago that was the game that Matt Flynn I think for all intents and purposes really earned his big contract. With the Seattle Seahawks. Nearly bringing the Packers to a victory here it's a lot stadium in prime time so this will be the first time ...






Bill Belichick has received his share of criticism for his personnel decisions, but he's looking pretty good now that the Patriots are sitting atop the AFC.</p>
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CHRIS VILLANI

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