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…
- The X’s and O’s series continues with a double feature: Deion Branch’s first TD since his return to New England and Aaron Hernandez’s TD against the Indianapolis Colts. Stay tuned later today for a look at Wes Welker’s TD against the Colts.
- Is there an end in sight to the NFL lockout? The owners and the players had another “secret” and voluntary meeting, this time in the New York area.
- Andy Hart from Patriots Football Weekly answers fans’ questions, including a scouting report on 6th-round pick Markell Carter and discussing the possibility of the Pats signing T.O. In a similar piece, Mike Reiss of ESPN Boston answers readers’ questions about the Patriots. Reiss’ piece, as many long-time Boston Globe readers know from his time at that publication, is a must-read.
- What do you think about the noise level at Gillette Stadium? Vote in this poll. Personally, I think it could be MUCH louder than what it is.
- Pete Prisco of CBS Sports has posted a list of 10 assistant coaches who are prime candidates for head coaching jobs, and Patriots defensive line coach Pepper Johnson is among those coaches listed.
- Heath Evans returning to the Patriots? The fullback would welcome the opportunity if he isn’t re-signed by the Saints.
- Pro Football Talk’s Mike Florio talks with Comcast Sports’ Tom Curran about the Tom Brady/Peyton Manning debate. Curran makes the point that Brady has the advantage after the snap, while Manning gets anxious in the pocket. This is due to the type of offenses run by each. Check out video of this interesting take on the debate HERE.