Home » Sports » Football » Patriots/NFL
Patriots' bye week a precursor to 'real season'
That fact is front and center with Tom Brady, who emphasized the point.
"This is when real football starts — in November, where you make that push," the offensive lineman said. "This is where we want to start playing good."
Historically, the Pats have been a very good second-half team. Since the 2010 season, in fact, the Patriots are now a combined 24-1 in the second half of the regular season.
Defensive line coach Patrick Graham has had to make do without the two top guns in the middle of his line. With Vince Wilfork and Tommy Kelly both on injured reserve, Graham has had to work in rookies Joe Vellano and Chris Jones, as well as second-year man Marcus Forston.
"I think they're playing hard. They work hard in the classroom, they work hard taking care of their bodies and everything, and all we can ask them to do is come into the building, do your job, be attentive, work hard, and that's what they're doing," Graham said. "The success they've had out on the field as a group . . . is because of that hard work.
"He's a hard-working guy. He's a big back. Just like everyone else, they all have their roles and he has his role," Fears said of Blount, who picked up 47 yards on five carries against the Steelers, most of those coming in the fourth quarter. "We're very happy with what he's doing and getting after it."