Nick Cafardo of The Boston Globe suggests Sunday could be a big day for backup quarterback Rohan Davey. Davey, who last spring led the Berlin Thunder to the NFL Europe Championship while earning league MVP honors, has seen the field sparingly this year as Tom Brady's understudy. With the San Francisco game largely meaningless, most hope Brady will have a short day, which would mean a nice, long look at Davey.
In his notebook, Cafardo examines the hopeful view maintained by 49ers coach Dennis Erickson, who sees potential in next season. Cafardo also mentions one Niners bright spot, that being the play of tight end, and Needham resident, Eric Johnson.
Michael Felger of The Boston Herald features defensive coordinator Romeo Crennel, who should be getting some phone calls when the season ends. Crennel, one of the league's finest assistants, has yet to receive the head coaching offer most believe he deserves. As Felger points out, it will very likely come this year.
In his notebook, Felger covers Davey, Johnson, some injuries, and Bill Belichick's insistence that this weekend's game is integral for the sake of postseason momentum.
Also in the Herald, Karen Guregian gives the fourth part of a five-part series featuring the Red Sox and Patriots Championship seasons. In this installment, Guregian juxtaposes Tom Brady and Curt Schilling, as the faces of their respective winners.
Tom Curran of The Providence Journal praises defensive backs Rodney Harrison and Eugene Wilson, the two members of the banged-up Pats secondary who have provided a steady continuity.
In his notebook, Curran discusses the quietly solid year Jarvis Green has had on the defensive line, and highlights the value of former fifth-round pick Dan Koppen from Boston College, who has helped anchor the offensive line this season.
Ian Clark of The Union Leader spotlights fullback Patrick Pass, who has worked his way up from the Patriots practice squad to become a regular contributor to the Patriots offense.
Michael Parente of The Woonsocket Call compares Erickson's past to Charlie Weis'future. As Parente points out, Erickson's greatest success came as head coach at the University of Miami, and knows full-well what Weis can expect as he takes his gig to the college ranks at the end of the NFL season.
In his notebook, Parente reports on injuries, Erickson's kind words for his former player Christian Fauria, and Brady's relationship with his hometown team.