Good morning! The First Shot provides you with a healthy helping of links to the top Patriots-related stories around the internet to get your day started. Enjoy your breakfast, your coffee, put off your work (just keep an eye out for the boss), and get your early morning football fix. The links begin after the jump…
- Last night, I examined Bill Belichick’s comments regarding the lockout’s effects on getting the team ready for the NFL season. What results from all of this, I argue, is a quality of game that will be significantly reduced.
- The lockout is affecting players’ pocketbooks, as a story posted on FOXSports.com discusses how players are taking out high-interest loans to supplement lost income. Unfortunately, while the big-ticket players are sitting comfortably resting on their millions while the lunch pail, depth players are hurting during this work stoppage.
- WEEI.com highlights comments made by Chris Collinsworth where he called out Patriots owner Robert Kraft to take the lead in the labor negotiations. Collinsworth says that as a player, he would trust Kraft to negotiate a “fair deal.”
- A couple of Chad Ochocinco stories: First, Mike Florio from Pro Football Talk and NBC Sports discusses Ochocinco with Sports Illustrated’s Peter King, who feels that the Patriots are the best and most logical landing spot for the wide receiver. King feels that Belichick can keep Chad in line and harness Chad’s strong work ethic, which often gets overlooked due to his off-field antics. In addition, former Patriot Willie McGinest discusses Ocho’s off-field antics, most notably his recent bull riding endeavor, and says that, “The risk isn’t worth the reward.”
- Mike Florio also talks with CB Devin McCourty, who discusses how lining up against Randy Moss prepared him for the NFL season and that he would not mind Moss returning to the Patriots.
- Michael Rothstein from AnnArbor.com catches up with former Michigan Wolverine and current Patriot punter Zoltan Mesko in an interesting Q&A piece.
- ESPN Boston highlights a story on Patriots fifth-round draft pick OL Marcus Cannon, who is currently battling cancer and is expected to make a full recovery.
- Former Patriot Tedy Bruschi is currently climbing Mount Kilimanjaro with Jeff Fisher and Chad Lewis, along with four injured military servicemen to support the Wounded Warrior project. Here is a quick update on his progress.