Julian Edelman joined the show to talk about the win over the Jets and the quick turn around involved with Thursday night games. He also praised Danny Amendola's job on the kick-returns and how Chicago will most likely respond positively to the reported fights in their locker room following Sunday's loss to the Dolphins.

Patriots wide receiver Julian Edelman made his weekly appearance on Middays with MFB on Monday, as the Patriots prepare for next Sunday’s game against the Bears. To hear the interview, go to the MFB audio on demand page.

Patriots wide receiver Julian Edelman made his weekly appearance on Middays with MFB on Monday, as the Patriots prepare for next Sunday’s game against the Bears. To hear the interview, go to the MFB audio on demand page.

The Patriots played four games in 18 days and it appeared to take a toll as they struggled in Thursday’s two-point win over the lowly Jets.

“When you go out and it’s a short week like that it’s all mental, it’s all like walk-through stuff,” Edelman said. “It’s tough for both teams. As athletes we’re creatures of habit. You throw a wrench in a routine it’s a little different. But we both had to deal with it. We came out with a win, and now you do get to have a long weekend.”

The normally reliable Edelman had a couple of costly dropped passes in Thursday’s game. Although he’s having his second straight strong season, Edelman said he wants to prove himself to Tom Brady.

“I definitely have to go in there and I’ve got to show him in practice that I can go not drop easy balls, or try to run with the ball before I have it,” Edelman said. “I’m sure that he’ll come back, because that’s how he is. He’s going to throw to the open guy. It’s definitely a different situation [than in past years], but I definitely have to eliminate that immediately and go back to the drawing boards and catch more balls and work on it.”

After a slow start, the Patriots offense has picked it up, due in no small part to the play of Edelman. The 28-year-old has 44 receptions for 453 yards and a touchdown through seven games.

“Like we say every week, we just try to go out each and every week and get better,” Edelman said. “That’s what we’re trying to do. There’s a lot of situations that we have to get better at. But we consistently put in the work. Guys are going out there, they’re working hard, they’re making plays in practice and it’s translating into games. It’s going to help the team. As long as we can just keep it going, keep getting better, everyone contributing, everyone doing their job, that’s how it goes.”

The Bears reportedly had some issues in the locker room following Sunday’s loss to the Dolphins that dropped Chicago to 0-3. Edelman said he expected an emotional team next Sunday in Foxboro.

“Chicago, they’re a good team, they’ve got a lot of weapons,” Edelman said. “Their defense is kind of that old-school Bears defense, where they’re going to do a lot of zone, possibly this, that. You always expect a team’s best when they come in and they play us, especially at home. And after last week, what they had to go through, they’re going to be fired up, that’s going to probably bring them together. It’s going to be the ‘my bad’ in there this week — ‘That was my bad.’ And then everyone’s going to kind of get together, and they’re going to try to fight. So we definitely have to take this in and we have to go out and practice and do our jobs.”

The offensively challenged Jets made a move over the weekend, acquiring wide receiver Percy Harvin from the Seahawks. Reports emerged after the deal that Seattle wanted to get rid of Harvin because he was a negative influence in the locker room, but Edelman said Harvin’s talent can’t be overlooked.

“It’s got to make them better,” Edelman said. “And I’m not saying that [with] any disrespect to the Jets. That guy’s a good player. Percy Harvin, he’s flat-out a playmaker in every aspect of the game. He can get you on special teams, he can do you on the fly sweep, as you guys call it.  He can go out and he runs unbelievable routes, he’s strong, he’s big, he’s fast. He’s not tall-big, but he’s 207 pounds and he can fly. … He’s a dynamic player.”

For more Patriots news, visit the team page at weei.com/patriots.

Blog Author: 
Jerry Spar

ESPN NFL analyst Tim Hasselbeck joined Dennis & Callahan on Monday to discuss quarterback Peyton Manning‘€™s record-setting career and the Patriots’ upcoming game against the Bears.

ESPN NFL analyst Tim Hasselbeck joined Dennis & Callahan on Monday to discuss quarterback Peyton Manning‘€™s record-setting career and the Patriots’ upcoming game against the Bears. To hear to interview, go to the Dennis & Callahan audio on demand page.

Manning broke the NFL touchdown passing record Sunday night in Denver against the 49ers. Despite the disparity in Super Bowl wins, Hasselbeck said he would rather have Manning’€™s career over three-time champion Tom Brady.

Said Hasselbeck: “I get it, Tom’€™s won more Super Bowls, and in many cases when people have this debate about who’€™s better, they say, ‘Well, more rings means you’re better,’ and it’€™s a team sport and those types of things. It’€™s true, but that being said, every quarterback is aware of the touchdown passes they throw, the yards they throw for, the records that they may hold and the company that puts them in. Just look at Peyton’€™s reaction to the touchdown pass last night that broke the record. He says all the right stuff, but clearly everyone was fully aware of where he was in terms of his place in history.

“And really, I think once you look at the touchdowns, the fact that he’€™s won a Super Bowl, you look at the longevity and if he plays next year, pretty good shot that breaks the yardage record, it’€™s very hard to argue that he’€™s not the best of all-time because when you start to look at just strictly at wins and losses, especially in the postseason, there’€™s so many other factors outside of just how the quarterback plays.”

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Many, including the hosts, point to the fact that Manning has fewer Super Bowl titles than his brother Eli. Although this is true, Hasselbeck still defended his assessment of Peyton’€™s career.

“Eli has two Super Bowls, Peyton has one,” Hasselbeck said. “It’€™s simple: who’€™s better? … There’€™s plenty of guys who have more Super Bowls than Peyton Manning. So who’€™s better, Kurt Warner or Peyton Manning? Kurt Warner has put up great seasons, Kurt Warner has taken two teams to a Super Bowl, won it with one team. Kurt Warner‘€™s done a lot of the things that Brady was able to achieve throughout his career — won MVPs, did all of that stuff. When you choose one guy over the other, it oftentimes comes across as you don’€™t think the other guy is good. Tom Brady is obviously awesome.”

Continued Hasselbeck: “For my money on it, the longevity of Manning, the way that he also changed the game, too. I think that’€™s part of the glasses I’€™m wearing when I look at Manning’€™s career. He changed football in a way that I’€™m not sure any other quarterback that I’ve ever watched has changed it based on how he operates at the line of scrimmage.”

Going back to Manning’€™s postseason history, the hosts felt it was fair in a comparison of Brady and Manning to look at how well Brady has fared and how Manning has had many difficulties in playoff games.

Said Hasselbeck: “I have less postseason losses than Peyton Manning. To me, that’€™s not a fair criticism. People say, ‘Hey, Brady loses to the Giants in the Super Bowl.’ Obviously you rather win, but that’€™s not worse than not being there. It’€™s not all equal, though, when you look at it from a statistical perspective. It’€™s not. When you look at Manning’€™s numbers, Manning’€™s numbers are significantly better than Brady’€™s. Not in the postseason, but here’€™s what we’€™re talking about: We’€™re talking about nearly a 20-year career at the quarterback position and the numbers that he’€™s compiled. … Part of what [the Patriots] started doing, they started copying what [Indianapolis] was doing offensively.”

Over a career, Hasselbeck said Manning is the quarterback that he would want, but on a play or a single game, he said that is where there can be an argument.

“Now what is debatable is one game, or a two-minute drive in the postseason, who do you want. I get it, absolutely I get it. The pick to Tracy Porter that Peyton Manning throws in a Super Bowl that is closely contested. Brady doesn’t have those. If you want to have that debate, fine, but  if you’€™re just talking about the scope of a career, week in and week out and how the game has changed because of the quarterback play of either of those two guys, it’€™s Peyton Manning. And I don’€™t know if it’€™s really much of a discussion. Now you want to have the postseason discussion about who’€™s more clutch and that type of thing, fine, I’€™d probably take Brady if I had one game in that environment.”

Continued Hasselbeck: “I’€™m acknowledging that when you start to look at the postseason and the touchdown-to-interception ratio, the win-loss record and stuff like that, that doesn’t look good for Peyton Manning. But I think taking a snapshot of these postseason results in terms of wins and losses, when you narrow the sample size down to postseason play, the element of good fortune starts to play a bigger role in terms of the outcomes of the game.”

Following are more highlights from the interview.

On if Manning benefited from playing a lot of games in a domed stadium: “I think it’€™s a huge benefit because they clearly like to throw the football a bunch. And you take the element of weather of half your games, that’€™s a big deal. I also think, you talk about a 38-year-old quarterback, and you talk about playing inside, well now I believe you need to talk about playing in the altitude, what that does for somebody that the ball doesn’€™t come out of his hand that it once did. There’€™s plenty of throws from him where the ball is just dying when it gets there.”

On if Jay Cutler should be on a list of underachieving quarterbacks: “Here’€™s what I’€™ll say about Jay Cutler: He breaks your heart. Ultimately you watch him and there’€™s throws that he makes that you look and you go, ‘Man.’ I’€™m not sure that anybody outside of Aaron Rodgers, Colin Kaepernick and Matthew Stafford could’ve made that throw. He does things at times like that that you have to say, ‘Wow.’ You have to appreciate the physical talent. Then there’€™s other times where you think, ‘You’ve got to be kidding me. I can’€™t believe you would make that decision in that in environment falling away.’ ”

On if the Bears’€™ locker room issues will help the Patriots next week: “I think it’€™s a good thing. … It’€™s definitely not a bad thing. It probably doesn’t matter, but I would say that it’€™s more of a good thing for New England. When you look at Chicago, sometimes it feels worse than it really is and people start to panic. … Sometimes you just have to keep fighting the fight.”

Blog Author: 
Andrew Battifarano
Tom discussed Peyton's record breaking night.

Patriots quarterback Tom Brady made his weekly appearance with Dennis & Callahan on Monday morning and talked about Peyton Manning as well as the reported infighting going on with

Patriots quarterback Tom Brady made his weekly appearance with Dennis & Callahan on Monday morning and talked about Peyton Manning as well as the reported infighting going on with the Pats‘ next opponent, the Bears. To hear the interview, go to the Dennis & Callahan audio on demand page.

“It’s pretty incredible,” Brady said. “It’s hard to throw touchdown passes, and he’s done it in the last few years, I’ve never seen anything like it. It’s pretty incredible. It’s a great record. It’s incredibly hard to do. He’s been very durable. He’s been obviously consistent, beyond consistent. He’s just a spectacular player.”

Added Brady: “He’s really got great command, he’s really a field general. I think that’s probably the best description, I think that’s kind of the thing that comes to mind when you think about him. He’s got great command out there. He’s been a great player for a long time. He was great with the Colts, and obviously coming to Denver he’s had an incredible run there. It’s been incredible to watch. He makes throwing four touchdown passes look so easy, which of course, as we know, it’s not.”

While Manning has more touchdown passes, Brady leads in Super Bowl victories, with three to Manning’s one. Brady said he never imagined his career would have turned out the way it did.

“Look, Peyton’s had an incredible career,” Brady said. “I’ve been very fortunate. To think I would have the opportunity to do that when I was starting out is crazy. And I’m still part of a great team that has a great opportunity to achieve even more. You don’t think about these things when you’re a kid, certainly I never did. I think I’ve just been so fortunate over the years to be on a great team, great teammates, and throw great relationships and friends in. Certainly the winning, because I think that’s what sets our team apart from a lot of other teams, has been our ability to win on a consistent basis year in and year out, no matter what the circumstances or situations. So to be a part of an organization that that’s what we’ve been able to accomplish has been unbelievable. I’m a lucky guy. I’m a lucky guy, and still going.”

Added Brady: “I wouldn’t change anything that I’ve ever done. I certainly wouldn’t change my career with anybody. I’ve had the opportunity to play in five Super Bowls. To play for one organization, you can’t envision those things. And like I said, it’s still going. I think hopefully the best is yet to come. We’re trying to accomplish and get better, because really this season is the only one we have, is the only thing we can control. To be sitting here 5-2 feels pretty good, too. [We've] had a good thing going.”

Following are more highlights from the conversation. For more Patriots news, visit the team page at weei.com/patriots.

On if Manning had an advantage playing in a domed stadium in Indianapolis for most of his career: “I think controlled environments, like everything, there’s positives, there’s negatives. It’s like anything, if you play golf in a controlled environment, which most of those [professionals] do, you’re going to have great scores. If you play golf and it’s 20 mile-an-hour winds and rainy, your scores aren’t going to be as good. But like everything, both teams play in it, and your competition is against your particular opponent. It’s not against a statistics sheet. I would say that the statistics in great conditions are typically going to be — I would say on average — better than they would be if there was really inclement weather. But look what [Brett] Favre‘s done. He was in Green Bay, which is also pretty tough weather.

“There’s probably only five, eight places I would say weather is a significant factor over the course of a season. We happen to play in one of them. But I think it’s great for team football, which, ultimately, in a team sport, and dealing with wins and losses, when you learn to play in those environments and under those conditions, it can be a great advantage to your team in the playoffs. … Because we’ve had the ability to practice and play in it, I think we’re probably one of the best inclement-weather teams ever to play.”

On if he communicates with Manning regularly: “We exchange text messages from time to time. I sent him a congratulatory note last night, just saying congratulations, because I was sitting up there watching it. But I wouldn’t say we talk. No, I wouldn’t say we talk, I’d say we maybe exchange a few messages from time to time.”

On the Bears, who reportedly had some issues in the locker room after Sunday’s loss to the Dolphins: “Every team is going through different things. It’s tough when you’re losing. I don’t think there’s a lot of good things or positive things to say when you lose. They’ve actually had a pretty tough home record, which I’m sure is tough on them and the home fans. I think they’ve lost all their games at home this year, and they lost their last home game last year. They haven’t been able to play well at home, but they’re still a good team. They’ve still won a lot of games this year, so they’re winning them on the road. Maybe we wish we played them at home. … We’ll get their best. We always seem to get everybody’s best. It’s just the way it is, playing here.”

On the controversy from a few weeks ago, when reports emerged that Brady was upset with his coaches: “The one thing I can really be responsible for is what I say, and not for really what other people may say or think or write. And that’s OK for them to think that. As I said earlier in the conversation here, there’s nothing positive to say when you lose. It’s not like you come out and you say, ‘Wow, we gave it all we could but we just couldn’t get it done.’ That doesn’t sound great. You don’t ever want to criticize your teammates. You don’t really ever want to criticize yourself much other than to say you can do a lot better. A few weeks ago, there’s not a lot of great things to say. We had been dealing with that. We lost to Miami, we lost to KC. … There’s a lot of teams, like I said, like Chicago, when you’re dealing with losses, it can get pretty tough. For our situation, when we were 2-2, yeah, it’s tough, because we lost a big game on a Monday night, it didn’t look good, we were playing some good teams coming up. Fortunately we found a way to turn things around, and that’s what we need to continue to do. I think everybody’s much more happy around Gillette Stadium when we’re winning games. And I’m sure our fans are, too. We as individuals, that’s what we try to do every day, we go in there with a sense of purpose to try to go out there and put our best on the field. And when it’s not our best, we go reevaluate and try to be at our best the next week.”

On wide receiver Percy Harvin, who was traded from the Seahawks to the Jets over the weekend: “He’s a phenomenal player. It’s obviously a big trade. He’s a very explosive player. There’s always a reason why someone’s traded. We had a lot of trades that worked out on our end — Randy Moss and Corey Dillon. Some teams think a player can be more effective in their system. When that guy’s healthy, he’s an explosive player. We saw that, really his whole career. … He’s an exceptional player.”

On the confrontation during Thursday’s game, when offensive lineman Jordan Devey got a penalty for retaliating against a Jets defender who pushed Brady: “Jordan said to me right after, he was like, ‘Man I wasn’t going to let him [do that]. I saw you throw the ball and the guy shoved you,’ and he goes, ‘I wasn’t going to let him get away with that.’ He’s a great guy, and has really stepped in and done a great job for us. That was great to see. I wish the 15-yarder, we didn’t get that, because we have way too many penalties this year. I think we’ve got to be first or second in the league in penalties. so we’ve got to try to figure out a way to eliminate penalties. But being aggressive and playing to the echo of the whistle and protecting your teammates is always supported in football.”

On if he flopped when pushed a second time: “No, I wasn’t trying to draw a penalty. I got hit the first [time] — when I got hit I thought that they were throwing a penalty on the other guy. That’s what I really thought the penalty was. And then he said it was on our guy. I said, ‘But this is the guy that hit me late.’ I was actually a bit surprised.”

On his recent foray into social media, specifically Facebook: “I’ve worked with one of my great friends on it, who’s really done a great job. That’s a pretty important thing to do today. We’ve talked a lot about it over the years, with social media. Really I think the phrase will always be ‘controlling the message’ and also having the opportunity to talk to your fans. I’m a little bit old school in that I’ve never really approached — probably the younger generation, the guys playing now, are much more in tune with that. I’m trying to do a better job with that, certainly over the last six weeks.”

Blog Author: 
Jerry Spar

Shortly after Peyton Manning broke Brett Favre‘s record for most career touchdowns Sunday night, a quick video from Patriots quarterback Tom Brady popped up on t

Shortly after Peyton Manning broke Brett Favre‘s record for most career touchdowns Sunday night, a quick video from Patriots quarterback Tom Brady popped up on the Broncos website. A brief message from Brady offered congratulations to Manning on the occasion of his new record, which he set in a thrashing of the Niners.

“Congratulations, Peyton on your touchdown record, a great achievement,” offered Brady. “We’ll see you in a few weeks.”

The Patriots and Broncos meet Nov. 2 in Foxboro.

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

Blog Author: 
Christopher Price