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Patriots.com News Blitz 8/26/04

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Nick Cafardo of The Boston Globe reports that Tom Brady is not particularly keen on Coach Bill Belichick's decision to make Troy Brown a two-way player. "I want to see him on offense full time, to tell you the truth," Brady told Cafardo. "It just wears on his legs playing defense. I don't need to help the defense out. I want my weapons on offense fresh."

Cafardo looks at another two-way player, Dan Klecko, who is progressing in his move from defensive line to linebacker. "In addition to his linebacking duties and special teams contributions, Klecko would seem to move up the depth chart at fullback with Fred McCrary having been cut," writes Cafardo.

In today's Boston Herald, Kevin Mannix also checks in on the Klecko story. "You're not going to hear Klecko talk of himself in positive terms. He has been well-versed in the art of speaking without saying much to promote himself," writes Mannix. "The son of Joe Klecko, a former Jets All-Pro defensive tackle who made headlines in New York through his play on the field, not his say in the locker room, knows enough not to say anything specific about his performance. He'll answer questions but won't reveal much."

Mannix looks forward to this weekend's showdown with the Carolina Panthers, a rematch of last year's Super Bowl. While it is only an exhibition game, the Panthers are treating it otherwise. "The calendar says the NFL regular season is still three weeks away but you can't tell that from some of the comments made by key Carolina players this week," writes Mannix. "They consider Saturday night's nationally televised rematch between the Super Bowl champion Patriots [stats, news] and the runner-up Panthers to be the real thing, not another meaningless exhibition game."

In The Providence Journal, Tom Curran profiles Adrian Klemm. Klemm, Belichick's first draft pick with the Patriots, has kept a low profile during his time with the Patriots. "Inside the network of the Patriots, Klemm is valued for his toughness, versatility and the fact that he keeps coming back from his assorted injuries to doggedly pursue the regular job most figured he'd have nailed down by now," writes Curran.

Michael Parente of The Woonsocket Call looks at the Patriots early inability to hold on to the football. The Patriots "have fumbled nine times in their first two preseason games," writes Parente. "The only positive is that they've recovered eight of them, so this sudden case of butterfingers hasn't hurt them. Likewise, the defense has only forced one fumble, so the ratio is ugly. That's why the Patriots spent a significant amount of time Tuesday working on ball-security drills and sharpening up their skills defensively."

Parente also looks at the shaky secondary situation that has developed in the wake of Guss Scott's season-ending injury. "The bottom line is that the Patriots are one injury away from a potential disaster in the secondary," Parente writes.

Mike Reiss of The MetroWest Daily News takes a look at some of the free agents available that the Patriots might look to sign in an effort to add depth at the safety position. "As we've learned from Belichick and [Vice President of Player Personnel Scott] Pioli over the last four-plus years, they'll do whatever it takes to upgrade the roster," writes Reiss. "Their current mission: finding a safety net at safety."

In his notebook, Reiss previews what could be an explosive matchup between Patriots cornerback Tyrone Poole and Panthers wideout Steve Smith. "Poole and Smith also went toe to toe in Super Bowl XXXVIII and Smith alleged Poole had spit in his face," writes Reiss.

In a fun story, ESPN.com's Page 3 reports on the friendship forged between Patriots owner Robert K. Kraft and Boston rapper Akrobatik. "Kraft had read about the local artist in The Boston Globe. The article was accompanied by a photo of Akro wearing a replica Patriots jersey," writes Peter Schrager. "The shrewd owner decided the rapper/die-hard Patriots fan needed something a little more authentic, so he presented Akro with a No. 32 Patriots jersey with "Akrobatik" stitched on the back."

Since then, Akrobatik has joined forces with two other Boston natives, rappers Mr. Lif and Fakts One, forming the group The Perceptionists. In conjuction with their upcoming album, the trio penned a song about the Patriots, appropriately titled "The Razor." The lyrics, which feature many references to Patriots players and moments from the last few years, can also be read on Page 3.

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