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…
- Yesterday, I wrapped up the X’s and O’s series of the Patriots’ Most Memorable Touchdowns of 2010 with a look at TE Rob Gronkowski’s TD catch against the Dolphins from Week 17.
- As I reported yesterday, Tom Brady’s passing guru, Tom Martinez, has not been given much time left to live. Brady opened up to SI’s Peter King about his longtime mentor:
“There’s so many people I owe so much to — high school, college and the NFL,” he said. “But he is right at the top of the list. Second to none. He never held back with me. Even when I was going good, he’d watch me and call me and say something like, ‘Your feet are way too slow in the shotgun. Speed it up!’ or ‘When you throw to your right, close your right shoulder.’
“I just can’t say enough about him, and what he’s meant to me. When I heard how serious it was the other night, I was there in bed with my wife, and it was just a sad moment. Very tough on his family, and on ours.”
- LB Dane Fletcher has put on some bulk this offseason, and he talks to the Boston Herald’s Ian Rapoport about his offseason.
- WEEI.com’s Christopher Price continues his free agent spotlight, this time focusing on DE Marcus Spears. Spears has extensive 3-4 experience and could be a target for the Pats once free agency begins.
- Who is the best safety on the Patriots? Vote for your pick now at ESPN Boston.