Heading into the final week of the regular season, the Patriots solidified their hold on the No. 1 spot in the WEEI NFL Power Rankings. This is the seventh straight week the Pats have finished atop our list. There was, however, plenty of movement in the rest of the top 10, with the Falcons, Eagles and Jets sinking while the Ravens, Saints and Steelers are climbing.

 

Check out the complete rankings at the It Is What It Is blog.

Six Patriots were named to the AFC Pro Bowl roster on Tuesday night, as quarterback Tom Brady, offensive lineman Logan Mankins and defensive lineman



Quarterback Tom Brady, offensive lineman Logan Mankins and defensive lineman Vince Wilfork were named AFC Pro Bowl starters, while inside linebacker Jerod Mayo, rookie cornerback Devin McCourty and safety Brandon Meriweather were named as backups, the NFL announced Tuesday night.

 

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

Dolphins linebacker Channing Crowder was asked by Fanhouse.com for his thoughts on the MVP race in the NFL. It is generally assumed by most that the winner of the award will be Tom Brady or Michael Vick, and Crowder didn't hesitate to name his choice for the honor.

 

"Everybody knows it should be Michael Vick, but they're going to let Brady win it because it's Tom Brady," Crowder said. "You've got to go with Vick. Vick's my dude."

 

With top vote-getter Tom Brady the only Pro Bowl certainty for the Patriots, team personnel director Nick Caserio said that's just fine by the organization and the players, despite New England's tremendous 13-2 season.

 

Rest versus rust. It’s an age-old debate that’s been faced by every NFL team that’s locked into a playoff spot before the end of the regular season. Do you give your starters the week off, resting them ostensibly to keep them healthy for the postseason?



Report card time and it's back to normal. 



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The Patriots finally returned back to New England after having to stay overnight in Rochester, N.Y. The team's Twitter feed did mention, however, that the flight back from Western New York wasn't without some challenges. "There's snow place like home! Kudos to the @delta pilots for sticking a difficult landing, to the applause of all aboard," the team Tweeted. 

 

Making his weekly appearance on The Big Show, Patriots head coach Bill Belichick explained his approach toward playing certain players in the regular-season finale against Miami Sunday. 

 

The Pats have already clinched the No. 1 seed in the AFC heading into the playoffs, have nothing to gain by beating the Dolphins, and still have the memory of Wes Welker injuring his knee in the final game of the 2009 regular season.

 

Patriots defensive lineman Vince Wilfork made his weekly Patriots Monday appearance on the Dale & Holley show Monday morning with guest hosts Mike Mutnansky and Chris Price.

 

Wilfork acknowledged that the flu had left him and some other Patriots in bad shape for Sunday's 34-3 win over the Bills. "It had a couple of us pretty messed up," Wilfork said, adding: "We fought through it. We knew how important this game was to us. The last thing we wanted to do was let down some of our teammates. I think we gave what we had to give."