ESPNBoston.com calls it the "Curse of Asante." Since that fated missed interception through the fingers of then Pats cornerback Asante Samuel in Super Bowl XLII, the Patriots have only managed a 5-5 postseason mark, 2-5 against opponents they've faced in the regular season. ESPNBoston pits the Pats Super Bowl champions of yore with the current young team, one in which its members may take time to come into their own.
The Boston Herald argues football is about "Jimmy's and Joe's; not X's and O's." Patriots coach Bill Belichick hasn't lost his way as a champion skipper. It's just, when he won those Super Bowls in the early 2000s, Belichick had guys like Tedy Bruschi and Ty Law--playmakers who made the Pats defense one of the best in the league.
Now is not the case, at least not yet.
The Herald also projects how the Patriots offense will look in the future, given its metamorphosis throughout the 2010 season.
The Boston Globe talked with Patriots owner Robert Kraft at an NFL owners meeting in Atlanta. Kraft was pleased with his team who finished with a 14-2 regular-season mark and he expressed disappointment with how it got "yanked away" so fast in the postseason. Kraft showed optimism, however, noting the Patriots "have a tremendous base to build on this year." The story also mentions the progress of NFL owners in negotiations to establish a collective bargaining agreement (CBA) with the National Football Leage Players Association (NFLPA).
Read more on the CBA in the Boston Herald. The only thing cemented in NFL future is the April 28-30 draft.
Roster aside, The Boston Herald also speculates how the Patriots may overhaul its coaching staff in the offseason.
ESPNBoston.com distills NFL analyst Ron Jaworski's breakdown of Patriots quarterback Tom Brady's performance, in New England's 28-21 loss to the Jets, into the key components. Among these points are Brady's "perception of pressure" (or misperception) forcing him into poor passes and analysis of the Jets' D, which funneled a Pats O from outside passing into a muddy middle.
Former Patriots running back Laurence Maroney was arrested on drug and weapons charges in St. Louis, reports the Boston Globe.