In the wake of reports implicating three Carolina Panthers for allegedly receiving steroids prior to last year's Super Bowl, Nick Cafardo of The Boston Globe reports the NFL is looking to further upgrade its already stiff testing policy. "A test to determine use of human growth hormone appears to be the next major step in drug testing in sports, and the NFL is willing to take that step once an accurate test is developed, according to a report in Wednesday's New York Times," writes Cafardo.
Following the '60 Minutes' report revealing the Panthers players' acquisition of steroids over a several month period spanning the 2003 NFL season, many have wondered how such indiscretions may relate to the Panthers appearance in Super Bowl XXXVIII against the Patriots. Jarrett Bell of USA Today relays comments from Panthers general manager, Marty Hurney, defending his team's achievements, suggesting hard work is what got Carolina to the game's biggest stage.
Michael Felger of The Boston Herald takes a look at promising young defensive lineman Rodney Bailey, who was lost for the season with an Achilles tear suffered in training camp last August. Bailey, only 24, is yet another solid component of the Patriots remarkably skilled, and notably young, defensive line core. "Once he gets back on the field, Bailey projects more as a rotational player on passing downs than he does as a first-down run-defender," writes Felger. "In three years in Pittsburgh, Bailey earned just one start in 48 games, and that came as a rookie. Yet despite his part-time status, Bailey consistently got to the quarterback with 9 sacks in three seasons. In 2002, he recorded 5 sacks, 15 unassisted tackles and a forced fumble."
Mike Reiss of The MetroWest Daily News details Bill Belichick's address to the student body of Bryant University, in Smithfield, Rhode Island. Last evening, Belichick spoke to approximately 1,300 students on topics of teamwork, attitude, and motivation. Belichick spoke candidly, relaying a number of colorful anecdotes, which Reiss describes in his piece.
Finally, this is the last day of my internship with Patriots.com and PFW, and would like to thank everyone for reading The News Blitz on a daily basis. I have had a wonderful time working for this organization, and am extremely grateful for the opportunity I have been given. From the heat of August's training camp to the celebration in Jacksonville, it was an amazing season and an unforgettable ride. Thank you.