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Patriots.com News Blitz - 10/21/2010

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After unwavering in his defensive style of play Monday on WEEI, Patriots safety Brandon Meriweather told reporters yesterday that he needs to "lower [his] hitting area."

A $50,000 fine from the NFL--for Meriweather's late hit on Ravens tight end Todd Heap in Sunday's game--, a phone call from former Patriot safety Rodney Harrison, who himself only made the Pro Bowl twice, despite high career accolades, due to a "dirty player" reputation among peers, and perhaps the sage advice from veteran Patriot teammates in the locker room, as the Boston Herald suggests, has the explosive D-back changing his tune.

Meriweather's sizable fine, even for a professional athlete, came on an NFL Week-6 that dished $175,000 in total fines on players for helmet-to-helmet contact. This is a reflection of NFL commissioner Rober Goodell's effort to be "more aggressive in penalizing players for hits to the head," according to the Boston Globe.

The Patriots safety is one of three NFL players fined from Sunday's games. Pittsburgh linebacker James Harrison, a repeat offender, was fined $75,000 for knocking two Browns players out of the game. Atlanta cornerback Dunta Robinson also footed the $50,000 bill for his hit on Eagle DeSean Jackson, though Robinson may appeal the fine as the hit was not penalized within the game, writes the Boston Globe.

Read more about the NFL's cracking down on helmet-to-helmet contact in the Globe and the Boston Herald.

Read more about Brandon Meriweather on ESPNBoston.com and in the Boston Herald.

The Patriots defensive blunders aside, New England will be looking at the San Diego D, which leads the NFL in quarterback sacks (21), for this Sunday's game at the Chargers, according to ESPNBoston.com. Read more about the San Diego Chargers in the Boston Globe.

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