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With Brown arriving, Dorsett gives Patriots yet another deep threat

AP photo The New England Patriots have reportedly agreed to terms with controversial wide receiver Antonio Brown, released earlier Saturday by the Oakland Raiders.

FOXBOROUGH, Mass. – How impressive was Phillip Dorsett’s four catch, two TD performance in New England’s 33-3 bashing of the Pittsburgh Steelers Sunday night?

Pretty impressive when you consider he had been worried all week about his family living in the Bahamas, which were ravaged by Hurricane Dorian last week.

“It actually has been tough, a lot going on,” Dorsett said. “You can’t even make phone calls over there because of the (lack of power). … Everybody is OK though.”

And he was more than OK on Sunday night, with four catches for 95 yards, including TD receptions of 25 and 58 yards.

“It was a good game,” Dorsett said. “Offensively I feel we did our job.”

His connection with Patriots quarterback Tom Brady has grown the last year and it showed Sunday night. “For me, it’s just always be ready, run the right route, be where (Brady) wants me to be,” Dorsett said. “You never know when the ball’s going to come to you as a receiver.

“At the end of the day, be where you need to be and Tom will find you.”

“Phil’s smart, dependable, consistent, tough and continues to take advantage of his opportunities,” Brady said.

And with Antonio Brown on the way, Dorsett certainly gave the Patriots something more to think about.

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The reaction to the New England Patriots’ controversial signing of mercurial wide receiver Antonio Brown, as expected, drew a lot of mixed reaction around the NFL on Sunday.

It was all the talk as the Patriots were set to open up defense of their Super Bowl crown last night vs. one of Brown’s former teams, the Pittsburgh Steelers, at Gillette Stadium.

But perhaps the most sharp comments came from a former Patriot, linebacker Tedy Bruschi.

Bruschi basically tried to put the Brown signing and its pitfalls in perspective on ESPN’s “Sunday Countdown”, as he is a regular on the show and a longtime ESPN studio analyst.

“Stop all the Randy Moss comparisons because it’s different,” Bruschi said. “We had conversations when (Moss) came in, and it was all about winning football games. That’s what it was about. That’s what Randy wanted to experience.

“We experienced that. We didn’t finish the job in the Super Bowl (vs. the Giants in the finale of the 18-1 season). We didn’t get it done. But still, but still it was about winning football games.”

Bruschi then went on to criticize Brown for his recent actions in basically forcing his way out of Oakland on Saturday. That plus his actions to get himself traded from Pittsburgh to Oakland during the off-season.

“Antonio Brown is different (from Moss), based on all his activity in the last year, it’s all about himself,” Bruschi said. “It’s selfish. That’s my opinion, his behavior up to this point.”

And, Bruschi said, Brown “has to change.”

So he basically, by being signed by the Patriots, everything is important there: walkthroughs, meetings, practices, meetings after practice. Everything is important. Saturday walkthroughs – you’ve got to be there. You’ve got to be present.”

Bruschi basically questioned whether Brown could change. But, in a tweet, he added “However, when you first endter the Patriot locker room, the slate is clean.”

Moss, also on the show, made it clear that Brown’s time with the Patriots should mean a halt to his social media antics.

“The next time I see Antonio Brown on my phone, it’s got to be touchdowns,” Moss said. “Football from here on out.”

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Since the signing of Brown is not expected to be official until today, the receiver, according to the NFL Network via a league spokesperson, was not allowed on the Patriots sidelines for last night’s game.

“He’s not officially a member of the team,” a league spokesperson told the NFL Network, “so he is not allowed to be with or around the team.”

Until he signs his deal on Monday, and passes a physical, that is.

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Patriots linebacker Elandon Roberts was named one of the Patriots co-captains late this past week, a mild surprise. It’s his first New England captaincy.

“It was a great feeling, of course, to e respected on that level,” Roberts said. “At the same time, I’m just doing what my job is. Being a captain, it’s just another job to do and I’m going to take it with pride and respect the position.”

Roberts said his role should come naturally.

“There’s no book on how to be a leader,” he said. “It just kind of comes. Like I said, it was a humbling experience. My teammates wanted me t be one of their captains, and I’m going to respect the role each day.”

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It was a busy weekend for the Patriots in terms of business, as they also reportedly signed cornerback Jonathan Jones to a three-year contract extension, the contract, according to ESPN, valued at an average of $7 million per season, with $13 million guaranteed. This year Jones carries a cap hit of about $3.1 million….

With tight end Matt LaCosse bothered by a preseson ankle injury, the bulk of the tight end duties were expected to fall to Ryan Izzo. “We’ll see how it plays out, but he’s come a long way in terms of his physical development,” Belichick said.

Next up for the Patriots: At Miami and old friend/Dolphins coach Brian Flores next Sunday at 1 p.m. Miami was throttled 59-10 Sunday by Baltimore.