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10/08/2012 - 6:33am
Welker: 'Nice to stick it in [Belichick's] face'

Patriots wide receiver Wes Welker has been known to get on the wrong side of coach Bill Belichick for his wisecracking ways. But the receiver, playing on a one-year contract and with an uncertain future in New England, didn't hold back after Sunday's 31-21 victory over the Broncos.

Speaking on a postgame show on CSNNE, Welker was asked about catching 13 passes and how that compared to Week 1, when his playing time was limited and he caught just three passes.

"Yeah, it's kind of nice to stick it in Bill's face once in a while," a smiling Welker said with a wink of his eye. "So this is definitely a good one."

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


10/07/2012 - 8:29pm
Ridley: Huge game didn't end way I wanted

FOXBORO -- After the greatest rushing game of his career, Stevan Ridley had to answer questions about a fumble that nearly cost the Patriots control of the game in a 31-21 win over the Broncos Sunday at Gillette Stadium. 

With the Patriots having stopped the Broncos at midfield following Willis McGahee's drop on a fourth-and-1 pass from Peyton Manning, the Patriots -- leading by 10 -- were driving to put the game away when Ridley fumbled the ball at the Denver 35. Von Miller forced the fumble with 5:27 remaining, and the Broncos drove the ball down the field before McGahee returned the favor and lost a fumble at the New England 14, allowing the Pats to hold on. 

"It was late in the game," said Ridley, who was benched for the AFC championship and the Super Bowl after fumbling against the Broncos in the playoffs last January. "You've got to close it out. You've got to run the football, and I told myself before the play [that...

10/07/2012 - 7:13pm
BB: 'Still got to work on playing 60 minutes'

Patriots coach Bill Belichick was mostly happy with his team's 31-21 victory over the Broncos, but as always with the coach, there's room for improvement. The Pats had to hold on to protect what had been a 24-point lead. 

"It was a good solid win for us," Belichick said. "We've still got to work on playing 60 full minutes and doing everything right all the time, but we did enough things today so it was good to come out of there with a win. That's a good football team." 

Belichick praised his backs and offensive line after the Patriots churned out 251 yards on the ground, playing mostly in a no-huddle offense. Belichick said the idea with the no-huddle, was not to only past fast but also to keep the Broncos from substituting defensively and he was happy with the execution. 

"We played at a good tempo, we played fast," he said. "[The linemen's] conditioning and hard work all through practice,...

10/07/2012 - 6:28pm
Driving it home: Pats survive Peyton

FOXBORO -- In a game of keepaway, Tom Brady led scoring drives of 12, 14, 16 and 16 plays while Wes Welker scorched the Broncos for 13 catches and 104 yards helping the Patriots turn back Peyton Manning and the Broncos, 31-21, Sunday at Gillette Stadium. Brady finished 23-of-31 for 223 yards, a rushing touchdown and a passing touchdown. Manning finished 31-of-44 and 345 yards and three touchdowns. The Patriots set a new franchise record with 35 first downs. 

Stevan Ridley became the first Patriots running back to rush for over 100 yards in consecutive games since Laurence Maroney in 2007, carrying the ball 28 times for 151 yards. In winning their second straight, New England improved to 3-2 and gained sole possession of first place in the AFC East, pending Monday night's game between the Jets and Texans at MetLife Stadium. 

Rob Ninkovich had a strip-sack that led to a Vince Wilfork recovery and forced a critical Willis McGahee fumble as...

10/07/2012 - 2:00pm
Hernandez inactive, Gronk, Mankins active

FOXBORO -- Aaron Hernandez is inactive and will miss his third straight game with a sprained right ankle while Logan Mankins will return after a one-game absence due to an injured hip. Hernandez sprained right ankle on Sept. 16 against the Cardinals at Gillette Stadium. 

Also active and playing is tight end Rob Gronkowski, who has reportedly been dealing with significant soreness and pain in his hip for the last two weeks.

Receiver Julian Edelman (left hand) and safety Steve Gregory (hip) were ruled out on Friday with their injuries. Filling out the inactive list are rookie linebacker Dont'a Hightower (hamstring), tight end Michael Hoomanawanui (concussion), defensive end Jake Bequette and offensive lineman Matt Tennant.

For complete coverage from the team of Chris Price and Mike Petraglia on the scene at Gillette, visit the Patriots team page at weei.com/patriots and the blog...

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