Toucher & Rich

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FOXBOROUGH, MASSACHUSETTS - AUGUST 19: Senior Football Advisor Matt Patricia and head coach Bill Belichick of the New England Patriots look on during the preseason game between the New England Patriots and the Carolina Panthers at Gillette Stadium on August 19, 2022 in Foxborough, Massachusetts. (Photo by Maddie Meyer/Getty Images)

  • After a chaotic preseason, which included two brawls during their joint practices with the Carolina Panthers, a struggling offense and issues at coaching staff, have we been trained to think that Bill Belichick is going to pull rabbits out of his hat this season?

    Albert Breer from The MMQB thinks so. Bert joined Toucher & Rich this morning for his weekly hour-long segment. Fred opened the segment asking Breer his thoughts on the brawls that happened during joint practices between the Patriots and the Carolina Panthers.

    “Trying to body slam Christian McCaffrey, there’s a reason the Panthers reacted the way they did in that one the same way I wouldn’t blame the Patriots for rushing to the defense of Kristian Wilkerson the way that they did.” Said Breer. “I have no problem with the Panthers doing what they did coming to Christian McCaffrey’s defense as he is the face of the franchise.”

    Bert mentions during the segment that players might be asking questions inside the locker room and role guys, like McCourty and Jones, might have their work cut out for them this season.

    “It’s interesting because I do think that there is… Some internal questioning of what’s going on in Foxborough that maybe hasn’t existed in the past. And I’m saying it from inside the locker room.” Said Bert. “I think it’s going to be really interesting the way that manifests itself. And, you know, I think the role guys like Devin McCourty and Devin McCourty and Matthew Slater and ultimately maybe even Mac Jones play and trying to reel that in.”

    “We’ve been trained to think that Bill is going to pull rabbits out of his hat. Right? Like, is he? Or was that Brady?”

    “I think this year is going to be a great litmus test that I’m not saying he can’t, but I’m just saying based on where they are, I can’t remember them being in this position where, what is it now, 17 days from or 16 days from the opener? And there are so many questions that seem to be unanswered.”

  • FULL TRANSCRIPT

    Fred Toucher: I heard Curran and Phil Perry. Curran was of the mind that it showed a lack of discipline. Perry was that he liked the hutzpah of the people for lack of a better word. What was your opinion of the brawls going on during that?

    Albert Breer: I think the Panthers guy, Kenny Robinson, was out of line, standing over a knocked out player like that. Like and so, you know, When Matthew Slater rushes over there and sticks up for his teammate, he’s the last person to be getting into a fight. Right? So I don’t have a problem with that one.

    I mean, trying to body slam Christian McCaffrey, there’s a reason the Panthers reacted the way they did in that one the same way I wouldn’t blame the Patriots for rushing to the defense of Christian Wilkerson the way that they did. I have no problem with the Panthers doing what they did coming to Christian McCaffrey’s defense as the face of the franchise. He’s been hurt, right? He plays a physical position where the lifespan is short. What the hell are you doing? You know what I mean?

    And that’s Deatrich Wise. That wasn’t like some, like, rookie trying to make the team. So like, I do have my question about that one and I think Bill would too. Like, What the hell are you doing? You know what I mean? Obviously that’s going to start a fight. If you go after the head of the snake, what’s going to happen, you know? So in that sort of situation, I think both teams were at fault.

    It’s interesting because I do think that there is… Some internal questioning of what’s going on in Foxborough that maybe hasn’t existed in the past. And I’m saying it from inside the locker room. And I think it’s going to be really interesting the way that manifests itself. And, you know, I think the role that guys like Devin McCourty and Matthew Slater and ultimately maybe even Mac Jones play and trying to reel that in.

  • Adam Jones: Does that all stem from the coaching set up, Patricia and Judge? It all stems from that.

    Albert Breer: I think that and there’s serious questions about where all that’s going and some of the things they did in the offseason.

    Adam Jones: And again from that there’s not outside there’s not media. This is from the players in the locker room.

    Albert Breer: I think that there’s like some questions about the way that things that that thing’s going to work and the sort of investment that was made into this year. And I mean, look, like, it’s Bill Belichick, so you know, I think we’ve all been trained to, at least I have, trained to think that, you know, he (Bill) can roll out of bed and win ten games. Is that really true? Because they didn’t two years ago, like last year, like they were good, not great. They lost a guy who was their offensive coordinator on two different occasions for what a total of…. I want to say it was something like 13 years? He called plays here for 13, 14 years. What’s the drop-off there? You know, can they make up for losing like a Jesse Jackson on defense?

    I mean, there’s like these losses that they suffered in the off season. I think it’s fair to question what they look like. I also paid attention to some of the media reports this week. Right. And this one’s really interesting. Correct me if I’m wrong, but most of the people in the media from here who are in Vegas said it was bad on Wednesday or bad on Tuesday. Better on Wednesday, right?

    Jon Wallach: Yes. That’s right.

    Albert Breer: Okay. So I talked to some Raiders people about how the week went. They told me we were asleep on Wednesday. We were asleep on Wednesday, and we were up their ass. I’m on Wednesday. So like, their feeling was they sort of slump walked into Tuesday, and they felt like they got the better of the Patriots on Wednesday. So I just like I wonder where they’re at right now, you know, and again, like, we’ve been trained to think that Bill is going to pull rabbits out of his hat. Right? Like, is he? Or was that Brady?