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09/21/2012 - 11:58am
King: Pats preparing for life without Welker

Sports Illustrated and NBC Sports NFL analyst Peter King checked in with Mut & Merloni for his weekly Patriots Friday appearance and weighed in on some key issues involving the Patriots.

Wes Welker's cut in playing time has been a huge issue in New England this week. King speculated that Welker is indeed being phased out.

"I think they're preparing for life without Wes Welker," King said. "I think if you look at the reality of this situation, Bill Belichick has always -- I mean always -- had the future in mind when he is trying to figure out how he is going to put his team into play for both the present and the future. All you have to do is look back at Richard Seymour. When you look back at Richard Seymour you realize in essence good players can be traded and can be gotten rid of.

"Now, I'll just make this point: Even though Wes Welker is not playing as many snaps as he did let's say a year ago, I did look [it] up...

09/21/2012 - 11:52am
Hernandez, Francis, Deaderick miss

FOXBORO -- Aaron Hernandez, who was spotted in the locker room Friday limping on his sprained right ankle, was among three Patriots players missing Friday's practice with ankle issues. Also not spotted Friday were defensive linemen Brandon Deaderick and Justin Francis. 

Hernandez, who is expected to miss this Sunday's game and the next several weeks, had a cart near his locker to help with mobility as he put on the walking boot on his right foot. Hernandez has missed all three practices this week while Deaderick injured his ankle during Thursday's full pads practice. 

Deaderick injured his ankle Thursday in practice and was limited. Logan Mankins, who was limited on Thursday with a hip issue, was in attendance at practice, which was held in shorts and shells on the upper grass fields outside Gillette Stadium. The Patriots will have a walk-through on Saturday before leaving for Baltimore and Sunday night's game against the Ravens. ...

09/21/2012 - 9:27am
Horton won't play hockey during lockout
By: DJ Bean

While Bruins players are quickly finding places to play during the lockout, at least one player won't be going anywhere. Nathan Horton, who has been shut down in each of the last two seasons due to concussions but was cleared for contact over the summer, will not play hockey during the lockout, Horton's agent told WEEI.com on Friday. 

Agent Paul Krepelka said that Horton is "doing well" and that his decision to not play hockey during the lockout "has nothing to do with his health. Just his personal choice."

Horton, 27, did not play again last season after suffering his second concussion in seven months in a 6-5 win over the Flyers on Jan. 22. In 46 games last season, the right wing scored 17 goals and added 15 assists for 32 points. Horton also saw his 2010-11 season end early when he suffered a concussion on a hit from Canucks defenseman Aaron Rome in Game 3 of the Stanley Cup finals. 

Thus far, David Krejci...

09/21/2012 - 9:27am
Belichick: 'Chance [Winslow] could help'

FOXBORO -- Despite just arriving in Foxboro this week with the team, Patriots coach Bill Belichick said before Friday's final full practice that tight end Kellen Winslow could play a significant role in Sunday's game in Baltimore. Winslow was brought into New England earlier this month for a meeting with the Patriots but no contract was signed. That all changed when Aaron Hernandez went down with a right ankle injury in Sunday's loss to the Cardinals. 

"I think we'll see," Belichick said at his Friday press conference. "We'll get a good indication today. We've thrown a lot at him the last couple of days. Today is kind of the day we try to tie it all together, review it and see how comfortable and how well he has retained things and all that. But he's a pretty experienced guy. He's smart. He's had a lot of football. We'll see how it goes but I think there's a chance he could help us."

The 29-year-old Winslow was signed on...

09/21/2012 - 9:00am
Lombardi on D&C: Cardinals' Horton 'comical'

NFL Network analyst Mike Lombardi made his weekly appearance on the Dennis & Callahan show Friday morning to talk about the Patriots and news from around the league.

Cardinals defensive coordinator Ray Horton said after Sunday's 20-18 Arizona victory that the Patriots were tipping their plays, helping his defense keep the potent New England offense in check. Lombardi laughed off Horton's comments.

"He's promoting himself," Lombardi said. "If he knew it was run or pass, why didn't he know it was going to be a draw when Danny Woodhead scored the touchdown [called back for holding]. Those are just comical things. It's self-promotion. Guys get off on a tangent. And really, when you study the tape and you really watch the game closely, I think the Patriots beat themselves more than the Cardinals did. The Cardinals -- we talked about last week -- they have a really good defense. But there were some times, there were some plays...

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