Devin McCourty is one of six Patriots players who have already said they will not attend a ceremony at the White House honoring the Super Bowl champs.

Devin McCourty further explained why he won't be attending a White House ceremony. (Kirby Lee/USA Today Sports)

Devin McCourty further explained why he won’t be attending a White House ceremony. (Kirby Lee/USA Today Sports)

Devin McCourty is one of six Patriots players who have already said they will not attend a ceremony at the White House honoring the Super Bowl champs.

“I’m not going to the White House,” McCourty told TIME via text message the day after the Super Bowl. “Basic reason for me is I don’t feel accepted in the White House. With the president having so many strong opinions and prejudices I believe certain people might feel accepted there while others won’t. … I can’t imagine a way I go there.”

Over the weekend, McCourty returned to Rutgers for a blood drive at Robert Wood Johnson University Hospital, and qhile he was there he spoke with NJ.com and further explained his reasons for not planning on visiting the White House.

McCourty said his decision is not a boycott.

“I personally don’t think so, but I think at this time in our country people feel like it’s a huge statement so they are going with it,” he said. “For me, it is what it is. Last time we won, a bunch of guys didn’t go, but it just wasn’t as a big a deal as it is now.”

Added McCourty: “It wasn’t really a big decision. I knew I wasn’t going to the White House if we won. To me, it’s a personal decision. Having been there before, you go there and you shake the president’s hand. That’s it. For me, I don’t want to go and sit around the White House for four hours to shake the president’s hand.”

McCourty also noted he won’t be trying to influence any of his teammates and their decision. They can decide for themselves.

“I think everybody on the team has the right and should decide,” he said. “I don’t think you should not go because six guys aren’t going, or you should go. To me, it’s up to you if you want to go or not.”

Blog Author: 
Ryan Hannable

The Darrelle Revis saga continues to get more bizarre.

Patriots running back James White became somewhat of a national star following Super Bowl LI when he scored three touchdowns, including the game-winning score in overtime.

White already was a star at the University of Wisconsin and the running back returned to his alma mater this weekend as he was honored at both the hockey and basketball games.

Patriots running back James White became somewhat of a national star following Super Bowl LI when he scored three touchdowns, including the game-winning score in overtime.

White already was a star at the University of Wisconsin and the running back returned to his alma mater this weekend as he was honored at both the hockey and basketball games.

Sunday afternoon White was celebrated during one of the media timeouts when Wisconsin hosted Maryland. The crowd gave him a big round of applause and even started a “MVP” chant.

(Click here for the video.)

Before the game, White spoke about what his life has been like in the few weeks since the Super Bowl.

“It’s been fun, it’s been tiring, but it’s a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity so I’ve just been enjoying it,” White said, according to Madison.com. “Been all over the place … but got to find time to train, stay in shape because most people’s offseason already started so you have to get after it.”

White figures to have a similar role with the Patriots next season as the team’s top third-down running back.

Blog Author: 
Ryan Hannable

When the Patriots selected wide receiver Malcolm Mitchell in last year’s NFL draft, much was made about him being in a women’s book club while at the University of Georgia and also writing a children’s book, “The Magicians Hat.”

Malcolm Mitchell has a second book he is seeking to get published. (Kirby Lee/USA Today Sports)

Malcolm Mitchell has a second book he is seeking to get published. (Kirby Lee/USA Today Sports)

When the Patriots selected wide receiver Malcolm Mitchell in last year’s NFL draft, much was made about him being in a women’s book club while at the University of Georgia and also writing a children’s book, “The Magicians Hat.”

Appearing on NFL Network Friday night, Mitchell said he would like to get the book published through a professional publisher and also work with them on getting a second book he’s written published, too.

“Currently right now, I am trying to work with publishers because I self-published a book while I was in college,” Mitchell said. “I would love to get the message to a broader scope just to share the magic of reading and personal experience I had with it.

“Right now I am trying to work with a publisher to get ‘The Magician’s Hat’ out even more and hopefully they will work with me even more on a second book because I do have one and I am ready to move forward because I feel like reading can definitely help kids and people reach their full potential.”

The book Mitchell wrote in college was about power of books, which can explore dreams and develop creativity. Mitchell had difficulty reading in high school and even struggled once he got to college, but when he had to miss a season with a torn ACL he used that to improve his reading skills and joined a women’s reading club.

On the field, Mitchell proved himself as a rookie. He became the first rookie Tom Brady ever completed a pass to in a Super Bowl and was one of his favorite targets all season.

“Coming in, my main focus was just to make the team,” Mitchell said. “You know, no opportunity is concrete. No situation is promised. And from the time I walked into training camp, I worked as hard as I could not knowing the outcome, but knowing I wanted to be ready just in case anything came.”

The rookie also noted how happy Bill Belichick was after the win in Super Bowl LI — the happiest he had ever seen him.

“He smiled at least for 10 minutes straight,” Mitchell said. “And he gave me a hug. I got a hug. I think that’s the first time we ever touched each other.”

Blog Author: 
Ryan Hannable

There should be plenty of interest in Jimmy Garoppolo. (Mark J. Rebilas/USA Today Sports)The biggest decision the Patriots will have to make this offseason is whether or not to trade backup quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo.



Feb 5, 2017; Houston, TX, USA; New England Patriots wide receiver Danny Amendola (80) celebrates after winning Super Bowl LI while Tom Brady (12), wide receiver Julian Edelman (11), tackle Nate Solder (77), and center David Andrews (60) are in the background. The Patriots defeated the Falcons 34-28 at NRG Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Bob Donnan-USA TODAY Sports

Danny Amendola would have a role with Patriots in 2017. (Bob Donnan/USA Today Sports)

As it stands now, Danny Amendola likely won’t be back with the Patriots in 2017 considering he is on the books for a base salary of $6 million and the team likely would release him.

But, as Amendola has done each of the last two seasons, the wide receiver could take a pay cut in order to play for the Patriots next year and it would make sense for both sides to make this happen.

Amendola is 31 years old and has only played a full season in two of his nine years in the league, but when he has been on the field with the Patriots, he’s been a valuable asset, especially in the playoffs.

Just look at what Amendola did in Super Bowl LI when the Patriots needed him most.

Playing in his home state, Amendola caught eight passes on 11 targets for 78 yards and a touchdown, as well as converting the second two-point conversion to force overtime. Also, look at what he did in 2014 when the Patriots won Super Bowl XLIX. He hauled in five passes for 48 yards and a fourth-quarter touchdown to help beat Seattle.

Over the last three seasons, Amendola has caught close to 70 percent of the passes thrown his way, which is among the top five among NFL receivers, and always seems to make a big play when the team needs one on third down.

Bottom line with Amendola is when the Patriots and Tom Brady need a play, he always seems to make one.

The Patriots typically carry five receivers on their 53-man roster and Amendola deserves to be one of those five, likely as the fifth. Going into 2017 the Patriots will have Julian Edelman, Chris Hogan and Malcolm Mitchell definitely returning and then likely two open spots. New England probably will add a younger receiver either through the draft or via free agency, and then Amendola would make the perfect fifth.

He could have a similar role to what he did this season coming in mostly on third downs and with his connection with Brady, be available to make clutch plays. Also, it benefits him that he has experience returning punts because the team likely won’t want Edelman in that role for the whole season next year and the team saw what happened once Amendola got hurt this year.

From Amendola’s perspective, he’s been in the league nine seasons and has made a good amount of money. Not many teams will be willing to take a chance on him given his injury history and he seems to enjoy New England playing for Bill Belichick and being around Edelman, one of his best friends. At 31 years old, being in a comfortable place likely means more to him than making more money.

If Amendola wants to return to the Patriots on a new contract, the Patriots would be making a bad choice if they didn’t take him.

Blog Author: 
Ryan Hannable

No one is harder on himself than Patriots cornerback Cyrus Jones.

Speaking at Leith Walk Elementary/Middle School in Baltimore where he went grew up, Jones reflected on his rookie season and was quite hard on himself.