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Patriots.com News Blitz - 9/21/2007

But not until after the NFL had a chance to review them and the notes that went with them.

And with that, it seems the team has been cleared of any further wrong-doing with regard to its sideline videotaping and other recording procedures.

When asked about another allegation that the Pats were implanting microphones in defensive players' uniforms, NFL spokesman Greg Aiello responded to *The Boston Globe, *"We have no evidence to support that claim."

"We're satisfied this case is closed and our focus remains on the upcoming game," Patriots spokesman Stacey James told the Boston Herald.

A memo has apparently been distributed to all 32 NFL teams. In it, Commissioner Roger Goodell says that NFL staffers met twice with Patriots officials, who fully cooperated with the league's investigation. The Patriots also certified in writing that no other copies of the questionable tapes and notes exist.

Back on the field, meantime, RB Laurence Maroney has been productivein his first two games this season, with about 150 total rushing yards so far. But he's steadily making progress thanks to a technique he's still trying to master - body lean.

"It is a major part of being a running back, so I'm trying to do it. Sometimes I feel like I can't run as hard leaning forward as I can standing upright, so I'm trying to learn to run just as hard leaning as I am upright," he told reporters Thursday.

"Body lean is the difference between guys getting a glancing blow and a direct shot," said Emmitt Smith, the NFL's all-time leading rusher and now an ESPN commentator. "If Laurence is working on body lean, that's the right way to go."

On the other side of the ball, Asante Samuel, who's seeing plenty of snaps at cornerback but still hasn't cracked the starting lineup this season, nearly had his first interception of the year last weekend against San Diego.

"I think I kind of misjudged it," he admitted in a Providence Journal piece. "I wanted to let it come down to me but the guy was so tall so I had to try to go get it at its highest point so he wouldn't jump up and catch it but I missed it. Wherever the ball is, I'm trying to get it, even if it's not going to my man."

And the Worcester Telegram & Gazette caught up with pass-catcher Wes Welker this week. He explained how he's been able to get off to such a quick start in a Pats uniform.

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