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08/24/2011 - 4:55pm
Rex Ryan: Belichick 'best coach in the game'

In an interview set to run Wednesday night on the NFL Network, Jets coach Rex Ryan talked about Patriots coach Bill Belichick and called him the "best coach in the game."

"I can put my resume out there, stats, with anybody's who's ever coached in this league. That's a fact. Defensively, that's a fact. But I don't need any credit. I just want to win. I want what Bill Belichick's got," Ryan said.

"I think Bill Belichick is the best coach in this game. I don't even think it's close. But I'm trying. And I know one thing — he knows that I'm going to compete with him every time we play him," he added. "If it ever comes down to just me vs. him, we’re going to end up on the short end of the stick. But when it's about us — our football team vs. his football team — that's where I even have more confidence."

For more Patriots news, check out...

08/24/2011 - 4:10pm
Foster fined for hit, but Ocho says he'll pay

Buccaneers linebacker Mason Foster was fined $20,000 for a hit on Patriots wide receiver Chad Ochocinco in a preseason game last Thursday, according to a Tampa television station.

The shot, which took place in the first half of last Thursday's game, drew a flag for unnecessary roughness, but Ochocinco tweeted shortly after the game that he would pay any fine that Foster incurred. (That led to NFL spokesman Greg Aiello telling Pro Football Talk that Ochocinco wouldn't be allowed to pay on behalf of Foster, saying each player must pay their own fine.)

However, in the wake of Wednesday's news, the Patriots receiver tweeted that he didn't agree with the decision, and that he'd be "reimbursing him personally." The was no immediate word from the NFL on what it plans to do if Ochocinco writes...

08/24/2011 - 2:56pm
Francona: Lackey on 'a pretty good roll'

Terry Francona made his weekly appearance on The Big Show Wednesday, discussing the recent performance of John Lackey and the struggles of Carl Crawford. He also offered his thoughts on the Texas Rangers, a team the Sox continue a four-game series with on Wednesday night and a potential postseason opponent. 

Francona praised the bullpen of the Rangers, which has been bolstered by the addition of Mike Adams and Koji Uehara.

"Those two guys are both really good," Francona said. "The Adams kid from San Diego, he's kind of one of the few guys I'd put in Bard's league right now. He gets lefties and righties out. Uehara, the league is hitting about .140 off of him, I'm talking about left and right-handers. So you add two of those guys to a bullpen that already has [Neftali] Feliz and guys like that, they get a lot more deep and a lot more dangerous."

John Lackey allowed four runs in 6.2 innings to collect the win on...

08/24/2011 - 1:48pm
Lineup: Ortiz back and hitting fifth

David Ortiz will be back in the Red Sox lineup on Wednesday, manager Terry Francona confirmed in his weekly interview on The Big Show. The designated hitter was cleared to return after he ran without any issue prior to Tuesday's game against the Rangers.

Ortiz is 3-for-7 with a walk in eight career plate appearances against Rangers start Matt Harrison. With a left-hander on the mound for Texas, Darnell McDonald will get the start in right field, while Josh Reddick will sit.

For complete Red Sox matchups against Harrison and a look at how the Rangers have done against Boston starter Josh Beckett, visit the Full Count blog. For complete Red Sox coverage, visit weei.com/redsox.

RED SOX LINEUP

Ellsbury, CF
Scutaro, SS
Gonzalez, 1B...

08/24/2011 - 1:28pm
Shane Vereen returns to Pats practice

FOXBORO -- Rookie running back Shane Vereen returned to Patriots practice on Wednesday for the first time since Aug. 3 as the team continues to get more and more players back from minor injuries. 

New to practice was offensive lineman Mike Berry, a rookie free agent signed Wednesday. Berry, at 6-3, 316 pounds, originally signed with the Patriots on July 27 as a free agent from Auburn and then was released on Aug. 3. Nate Solder, after missing Tuesday, returned on Wednesday, as did safety Josh Barrett and tight end Lee Smith. 

Albert Haynesworth was back on the practice field for a second straight day as the Patriots prepare for the Lions Saturday in Detroit in their third preseason game. 

Missing again was linebacker Brandon Spikes, as were Stevan Ridley, Leigh Bodden, Kevin Faulk, Malcolm Williams, Jeff Tarpinian, Dane Fletcher, Marcus Cannon, Ryan Wendell, Brandon Deaderick, Jermaine Cunningham, Ron Brace and Mike Wright....

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