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Tag:Brandon Tate
Posted on: September 19, 2011 5:31 pm
 

Jordan Shipley to IR with ACL injury

Shipley's done for '11. (US PRESSWIRE)
Posted by Ryan Wilson

Bengals rookie quarterback Andy Dalton has outpaced expectations through two weeks of the regular season, so much so that the Carson Palmer era officially appears to be over. But Dalton, who has thrown for 413 yards, completed 66.1 percent of his passes, and tossed three touchdowns and no interceptions, will be without second-year wide receiver Jordan Shipley for the rest of the year.

Shipley, out of the University of Texas, will be placed on injured reserve after tearing his ACL against Denver Sunday, head coach Marvin Lewis announced. CBSSports.com Rapid Reporter Paul Dehner adds that Andre Caldwell, who was splitting reps with Shipley in the slot, will now take the majority of snaps with help from Brandon Tate.

Tate was signed off waivers after the Patriots released him prior to Week 1.

Shipley had to be helped off the field after Broncos cornerback Cassius Vaughn tackled him low, but Lewis had no problem with the play.

"That was just a tackle," said Lewis. "The way the game is put together now if he were hit helmet-to-helmet or shoulder-to-helmet it would have been a play that came in violation of some of our rules now. So down low is legal."

As a rookie, Shipley caught 52 passes for 600 yards and three touchdowns.

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Posted on: September 5, 2011 10:06 am
 

Report: Randy Moss willing to return to Patriots

Posted by Will Brinson

Randy Moss is, presumably, hanging out somewhere playing shuffleboard watching racecars make left turns. Because that's what retired people do, obviously. However, for all that excitement, Moss would reportedly be willing and/or interested in returning to the NFL ... if it were with the Patriots.

That's according to Chip Fontanazza of the West Virginia MetroNews, who not only interviewed Moss about stuff that doesn't relate to football but managed to pick up anonymous source that said "Moss does regret leaving the New England Patriots and that would most likely be the only team he would play for in the NFL if he would return."

The timing of the information is not just coincidental, but it's logical as well -- ever since Moss announced his retirement from the NFL, he's made it clear how much he respects and adores the New England organization.

It seems pretty unlikely that the Pats will make another run at/with Moss, though. They've certainly known that Moss would return to New England to wrap up his career, and therefore already could have signed him.

Instead, they went out and traded for Chad Ochocinco in order to beef up an already stout -- Wes Welker, Deion Branch, Brandon Tate, Julian Edleman, Aaron Hernandez, Rob Gronkowski -- group of pass-catchers.

But Ocho's struggled and the Pats recently dumped 2009 third-rounder Tate, so it would be a little foolish to rule anything out, especially as it relates to either Moss or Bill Belichick.

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Posted on: September 3, 2011 10:47 am
Edited on: September 3, 2011 10:15 pm
 

NFL cuts: Teams down to 53 by Saturday evening

Posted by Josh Katzowitz

Getting to 53
On Tuesday, teams had to cut their roster size from 90 to 80, and while some interesting names were axed.

Included among them werelong-time San Diego long snapper David Binn, Cowboys center Andre Gurode and draft bust Vernon Gholston), and more are sure to come today.

So keep an eye on this post, where we’ll highlight the biggest names who get pink-slipped; at some point, somebody surprising is going to lose his job.

  • Though we're unsure what he did, ESPN.com is reporting that free agent running back Dominic Rhodes has been suspended by the commissioner for at least one year.
  • Browns running back Brandon Jackson has been placed on the IR list and will miss the season.
  • Receiver Donnie Avery has announced, via his Twitter page, that he's been released by the Rams. Wrote Avery: "Its been real St.Louis. I had a good 3 years. The feelings were mutual. We both thought I need a fresh start somewhere else. #NoHardFeelings"
  • The Titans have traded an undisclosed draft pick to the Packers for Quinn Johnson. The move is likely in response to the four-game suspension of Tennessee fullback Ahmard Hall.
  • The Jets announce they've traded defensive back Dwight Lowery to the Jaguars for an unconditional draft pick. The Jets also have received guard Caleb Schlauderaff from the Packers for an unconditional draft pick.
  • Apparently, the Texans are planning on scoring a lot this year. They've released Brad Maynard, the only punter on the roster.
  • With the Cowboys shaving their roster to 53, kicker Shayne Graham has had the pleasure of being cut twice this preseason.
  • The Jaguars have placed backup running back Rashad Jennings on the IR list with a knee injury.
  • The Dolphins have cut cornerback Will Allen and running back Larry Johnson, according to the Miami Herald. Allen had restructured his contract and took about a $4 million paycut in base pay for 2010, but still, that wasn't enough to save him a spot on the squad. Miami could bring him back at another reduced rate.
  • According to scout.com, the Raiders have parted ways with cornerbacks Lito Sheppard and Walter McFadden.
  • Though numerous reports said the Patriots were trying to trade defensive back Brandon Meriweather, he has been cut by the team. Also, in a bit of a surprise, New England has released receiver Brandon Tate.
  • Bears tight end Desmond Clark has confirmed that he's been released. Writes Clark on his Twitter page: "I played my butt off but sometimes it's more about the business. That's what it boiled down to."
  • The Broncos have announced they've also released receiver David Anderson and defensive tackle Jeremy Jarmon.
  • According to his agent, the Patriots have released veteran running back Sammy Morris.
  • Dan Orlovsky, in contention with Curtis Painter and Kerry Collins, to back up Peyton Manning, has been cut by the Colts.
  • The 49ers have cut quarterback Josh McCown. Here's what he'll do next, according to CSN Bay Area. "I'd love to come back," McCown said. "As for right now, I'm headed home to coach (high school football in North Carolina) and will continue to stay ready."
  • With plenty of personal baggage and a terrible end to the preseason, the Broncos have cut cornerback Perrish Cox, writes Rapid Reporter Lee Rasizer.
  • Rapid Reporter Paul Dehner reports that Cincinnati has cut Max Jean-Gilles. A bit of a surprise considering Jean-Gilles was reportedly competing for a starting job. He simply didn't have a great camp.
  • The Colts have released Tommie Harris. You'll recall the Colts gave him a one-year deal after the Bears cut him in February. Though Harris is a three-time Pro Bowler, his projection has been hurt by numerous injuries in the past few seasons.
  • The Eagles have released receiver Sinorice Moss.
  • A bum hamstring has done in Titans defensive lineman Jacob Ford. He has been waived/injured.
  • New England has released defensive lineman Eric Moore -- who, at one point, seemed a pretty safe bet to make the squad.
  • The San Diego Union Tribune writes that Chargers receivers Laurent Robinson and Kelley Washington are gone.
  • The Newark Star Ledger has declared Steve Weatherford the winner in the Giants punting competition. That means Matt Dodge will be released, despite a solid preseason.
  • According to his agent, Brandon Ghee, a 2010 third-round pick for the Bengals in 2010, has been cut by Cincinnati.
  • The Broncos have released tight end Dante Rosario. He's probably surprised, considering he played the last four years for John Fox in Carolina.
  • The Gronkowski family suffered a double-whammy, as PFT reports that Dan and Chris will be released from the Lions and Cowboys, respectively.
  • Two years ago, the Cowboys gave Igor Olshansky a four-year deal worth $18 million (with $8 million in guarantees). Today, according to ESPN, the Cowboys have released him.
  • According to the Carroll County Times, the Ravens will release linebacker Tavares Gooden, despite holding trade talks with the 49ers at one point.
  • According to the Chicago Tribune, Bears running back Chester Taylor has been informed he’s been cut. Again. For real, this time. We think.
  • With the Saints maintaining a good depth of running backs (Mark Ingram, Darren Sproles and Pierre Thomas), the team has placed Chris Ivory on the physically unable to perform list. After six weeks, when he’s eligible to return, New Orleans will have to make a decision about which running back is most expendable.
  • The Rams have cut 2010 fourth-round pick wide receiver Mardy Gilyard. He obviously wasn’t stellar in St. Louis, but the scribes will miss him because of his immense interview skills. As an example, this is what he tweeted when he found out the news: “Jus got released isshhh is getting real na ugh!!!!”

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Posted on: June 2, 2011 8:27 am
Edited on: June 2, 2011 10:19 am
 

Pats may not think much of Brandon Tate … yet

With R. Moss gone, look for B. Tate to get more attention from opponents (Getty).Posted by Ryan Wilson

It was a surprise when the Patriots took wide receiver Brandon Tate in the third round of the 2009 NFL Draft, but Bill Belichick is nothing if not unorthodox. Tate suffered a major knee injury during his senior season at North Carolina, and  reportedly tested positive for marijuana at the 2009 Combine. But he offered size, speed and was an explosive returner. The plan was for him to redshirt his rookie season and contribute in 2010.

Plus, Belichick had made a nice living ignoring conventional wisdom and drafting players he felt best fit New England's scheme. Offensive lineman Logan Mankins (first round, 2005) and Sebastian Vollmer (second round, 2009) are recent examples.

In 10 starts last season, Tate had 24 receptions for 432 yards, including three touchdowns. The totals aren't particularly impressive, but the 18-yards-per-catch average gets your attention. Still, for NFL Films' Greg Cosell, it was clear from watching game tape that the Patriots' staff has concerns about Tate as an NFL wideout.

"Very often, the way players are used tells you how a coaching staff feels about them," Cosell told CSN New England's Tom Curran. "The way the Patriots use Brandon Tate tells that they don't think much of him at this point. He runs about three routes and the only time the ball comes to him is when a play is specifically called for him."

Cosell acknowledges that Tate is "big, he runs well, he's got good lateral quickness," but also points out that, "…in taking the spot of Moss, he was stepping in for someone who was as good a vertical receiver as we've ever seen. Tate has vertical skills but not Randy Moss vertical skills and that's why coverage was different for Tate after Moss left."

This is about what you'd expect from a second-year player getting his first crack at substantial playing time. It's not unusual for coaches to manage their expectations in such circumstances, and Cosell notes that the work stoppage is really hurting Tate's development.

ESPNBoston.com's Mike Reiss adds that the coaching staff's lack of faith in Tate can be traced back to Tate's inconsistency last season. "One stat that stands out is that he was targeted 46 times and totaled 24 receptions for a 54.3 target percentage, one of the lowest among the team's pass-catchers."

But as always seems to happen, Tom Brady, superhero, will fix everything. Reiss reports that Brady is in New England to lead players-only workouts starting Wednesday. Reiss: "While the value of player-led workouts during the lockout is debatable, many believe chemistry between a quarterback and receiver can grow during the offseason. … Not surprisingly, teammates have responded, according to sources, breaking from their personal workout regimens to join Brady."

The Pats drafted two wide receivers in 2009 -- Tate and seventh-rounder Julian Edelman, a college quarterback from Kent State who moved to wide receiver in the pros and immediately drew comparisons to Wes Welker.

Ultimately, Cosell thinks Edelman has the skills to replace Welker, but warns that Welker is "a very specific kind of player" who "is a function of the entire offense and what's around him."

That was easy to forget when New England was regularly hanging 30-plus points on NFL defenses. Then again, any offense with Brady as its centerpiece is automatically high-powered. Moss was proof of that. He was invisible in Oakland before Brady helped revitalize his career, and his production fell off a cliff after the Pats shipped him to Minnesota last season.

While Tate will benefit from offseason workouts, even informal ones, Patriots will be in good shape at receiver when the labor dispute is settled. Deion Branch joins Welker as a savvy veteran who intimately understands the offense. And tight ends Aaron Hernandez and Rob Gronkowski, rookies a year ago, accounted for 26 percent of all New England receptions in 2010. It's not like 2006, when Brady's top targets were Jabar Gaffney and Reche Caldwell. The Pats' offense is plenty potent, as evidenced by their 14-2 record in 2010.

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Posted on: December 3, 2010 11:53 pm
 

What will the Jets do with Revis Monday night?

Posted by Andy Benoit

When the Jets and Patriots met back in Week 2, the decision for what to do with Darrelle Revis was simple: stick him on Randy Moss. Revis on Moss meant no vertical passing game for the then-downfield-attack-oriented Patriots.

Obviously, things are different this time around. Revis is still a shutdown corner (he’s been arguably better this season than last season) but the Patriots no longer have their dangerous big-play slouch outside. An offense that was once built around Moss is now built around a consortium of mid-range weapons: Wes WD. Revis (US Presswire)elker, Brandon Tate, Deion Branch and Aaron Hernandez.

So which one of these four will the Jets glue Revis to Monday night? The name that immediately comes to mind is Welker, New England’s leading receiver. However, so many of Welker’s routes are underneath and drags, which are nearly impossible to take away. Sacrificing your shutdown corner to prevent a bunch of five-to-eight-yard receptions that might not be preventable anyway doesn’t seem worthwhile.
Style-wise, Revis on Tate would make the most sense. But Tate has just 18 receptions on the season. If he’s taken away, there’s no guarantee Tom Brady would even notice.

This leaves Hernandez and Branch. Hernandez is a tight end, though a lithe tight end whom Revis could certainly handle from a size and strength standpoint. But what does New York do when Hernandez leaves the slot and lines up directly beside an offensive tackle? (There’s a reason you don’t see shutdown corners shadow tight ends.)

So does this mean the Jets will put Revis on Branch? He doesn’t quite have his old explosiveness, but the recently-reacquired veteran still leads the Patriots with 61.9 yards per game. Those aren’t Calvin or Andre Johnson numbers, though.

Revis and the Jets aren’t saying what they’ll do. Here’s an idea: instead of having Revis shadow one player (and if they do choose a player, the guess here is they’ll choose Branch), why not move him around? That would make Tom Brady’s job more difficult, particularly in the presnap phase. It would also allow New York more chances to disguise coverages and help prevent the Patriots from getting in the type of aerial rhythm they enjoyed during the second half at Detroit.

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Posted on: November 20, 2010 11:02 pm
 

Week 11 injury report analysis Part V

Posted by Andy Benoit

Colts @ Patriots

The Colts listed basically their entire roster as questionable this week, so who knows what the starting lineup will look like come kickoff. Generally, Indy’s rule is players who don’t practice don’t play. If that’s the case, then don’t expect to see running backs Joseph Addai (neck) and Mike Hart (ankle) or linebackers Gary Brackett (toe) and Clint Session (elbow). It looks like WR Austin Collie will return after his frightening concussion two weeks ago.

Patriots return star Brandon Tate missed the week with a sickness and is questionable. Guard Steve Neal was limited in practice with a shoulder. S Jarrad Page and RB Fred Taylor are both ostensibly closer to returning, though both remain questionable.

Giants @ Eagles

The Giants are without two of their three best offensive linemen: LT David Diehl (hip) and C Shaun O’Hara (foot). Diehl’s backup, Shawn Andrews, is once again battling back problems and is questionable. New York is also missing its steadiest offensive weapon, WR Steve Smith. This significantly alters Eli Manning’s approach to third down and the inside passing game.

Eagles DE Juqua Parker was limited in practice this week, but he’s the only player battling a significant injury. Sine there’s nothing left to talk about here, do we go ahead and take this opportunity to heap more praise on Michael Vick?

Broncos @ Chargers

The Chargers are getting starting receiver Malcom Floyd back from a hamstring injury, but No. 2 wideout Legedu Naanee will need at least another week. Antonio Gates is expected to miss another week with plantar fascia. Don’t count on RB Ryan Mathews (ankle) playing, either.

For the Broncos, WR Eddie Royal (hamstring) and CB Andre Goodman (hip) both missed practice. Royal is questionable; Goodman is out.

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Posted on: October 6, 2010 11:16 am
 

How Moss trade will affect New England

With R. Moss gone, look for B. Tate to get more attention from opponents (Getty). Posted by Josh Katzowitz

Some of you were introduced to Patriots WR Brandon Tate on Monday Night Football when he used his immense speed to burn the Dolphins special teams and return the second-half kickoff for a 103-yard TD. Well, if you liked what you saw, get ready. You’ll be seeing a lot more of Tate now that Randy Moss has been traded to the Vikings.

You might not believe this, but with his nine catches, Moss ranked fourth on his team in receptions. As the season wore on, Patriots QB Tom Brady didn’t target Moss quite as much and elected to throw the ball to Wes Welker, TE Aaron Hernandez and Tate.

On the surface, it seems like Welker will be the most affected by the Moss trade. In the same way Minnesota’s Percy Harvin will benefit in the slot when Moss – and the stretching-the-field ability he brings to each snap – is on the field, Welker loses perhaps the best deep threat in the game. The Patriots obviously hope Tate can grow into that role. This also might provide a good opportunity to see what third-round pick Taylor Price, who's been inactive for all four games this year, can do on the field.

You also have to wonder if Moss had become a distraction (no, not Randy Moss!). He bitched about his contract after the Patriots beat Atlanta in the season-opener, and according to a few reports, Moss was lazy in his blocking (what, Moss lazy in his blocking?!?) during the Miami game in which Brady targeted Moss just once.

Unless we’re talking about addition by subtraction, this move doesn’t do much to help the 2010 version of the Patriots. I’ve already mentioned how Minnesota feels the need to win the Super Bowl this year, and I imagine New England also wouldn’t mind hoisting the trophy at the end of the season. But does trading Moss away get the Patriots any closer to that goal?

I don’t think that it does.

The defense has been unimpressive – it ranks 28th in the NFL - and until the Patriots special teams began to dominate the Dolphins, New England struggled to score points on offense (I realize the Patriots, at this point, are the No. 1 NFL team in points scored, but they also rank 11th in total yards per game).

Plus, the wide receiving corps is simply not as good as it was yesterday.

But think about this. The Patriots won the Super Bowl in 2002, 2004 and 2005. Those years, the top WRs were players like Troy Brown, David Patten, Deion Branch, and David Givens. Solid guys, but nobody extra special. Nobody like Moss.

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Posted on: October 6, 2010 11:08 am
Edited on: October 6, 2010 1:37 pm
 

Patriots are suddenly reloading at a rapid rate

Posted by Will Brinson

The knee-jerk reaction to the deal that sent Randy Moss from the Patriots to the Vikings is "TOM BRADY IS DONE!" (Well, from a fantasy football perspective anyway -- there's also the "The Patriots are giving up!" reaction as well.)

Both are silly, of course.

The deal just, hypothetically, means less deep balls in their offense -- but even that might not be correct with the lightning-fast Brandon Tate on the roster. And outside of that, they still have plenty of weapons in Wes Welker (he's good, duh), Julian Edelman (he's Wes Welker 2.0), Aaron Hernandez and Rob Gronkowski.

More importantly though, they now have two draft picks in the each of the first FOUR rounds of the 2011 NFL draft.

Think for a moment about how silly that is -- assuming they don't package these picks for more selections (which is not a safe assumption), they'll be grabbing eight players before most people get four and some people get three.

They have the Oakland Raiders' first-rounder (which is looking like a lottery ticket at the moment), the Carolina Panthers second-rounder (appearing to be in the high end of that round as well), the Minnesota Vikings third-rounder, and the Denver Broncos' fourth-rounder (you may recall they sent Laurence Maroney's corpse for that).

So, yes, eight selections in the first four rounds of the NFL Draft, a freshly signed Tom Brady, a slew of weapons on the offensive end and a young, but talented defense that needs some time to gel.

Are they the Super Bowl favorites this year? Of course not. Did losing Randy Moss probably hurt their short-term chances? Yes.

Can they turn those picks into high quality contributors and/or more picks in the future? That's the most important question, but it's safe to say that, yeah, they probably can do that. And because of that, the 2010 Patriots, once considered a near-dead dynasty, are suddenly straight reloaded.
 
 
 
 
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