Karen Guregion gives us a glimpse of the kind of person Brandon Spikes is in Monday’s Boston Herald with Spikes’ healthy outlook a good sign. Besides apparently doing very well after recent knee surgery, Spikes comes across as a genuinely good guy with a very competitive fire burning inside.

“It’s tough for me, being right there. Almost is not good enough,” Spikes said. “I think guys are going to be hungrier. I was blessed enough to play on the big stage. We were right there. I don’t like talking about it. It’s tough to swallow sometimes.”

Spikes comes across as a well-grounded person, knowing that fame is fleeting; in addition you can read about how he is generous with his fans, in a non-publicity seeking way.

 

North Platte native Danny Woodhead at a mentoring fundraiser

Half way across the country the North Platte Telegraph has Danny Woodhead also meeting the fans. Woodhead was signing copies of a children’s book that he has out that was written to inspire kids to reach their goals, and was on hand to raise awareness for a community mentoring program.

 

Vince Wilfork, Randy Moss and Kevin Faulk in the Bahamas

 

Steve Balestrieri from the Pats Pub takes a look at what’s up with the Patriots Adding Fullbacks: Maybe A Passing Fancy? With the Pats adding genuine fullbacks to the roster for the first time in years, is this a sign that the team will often line up in a two-back formation in 2012? Not necessarily.

(T)he real reason may be in pass protection, with Kevin Faulk probably going to retire this season, the Patriots best pass blocker in the backfield is going away. Look no farther than Buffalo who upgraded their pass rush with Mario Williams. And no one will benefit more by having Williams on one side than Mark Anderson who notched 12.5 sacks with the Patriots last season. Buffalo now goes from a poor pass rush team to an excellent one. Miami and the Jets are also looking to upgrade their pass rushers.

 

NEPatriotsDraft continues their phenomenal pre-draft coverage. Recent additions include interviews with Hampton CB Micah Pellerin (whom the Pats recently worked out), Stanford WR Chris Owusu, and San Diego State OLB Miles Burris, as well as scouting reports on LSU CB Ron Brooks, Arkansas WR Greg Childs and Oregon LB Josh Kaddu. The site’s newest mock draft should also be available early this week.

 

Sticking with the subject of potential Patriots, Arielle Aronson has a new pair of entries for WEEI’s It Is What It Is blog, profiling Nebraska CB Alfonzo Dennard and Clemson DT Brandon Thompson.

 

Bob George thinks the NFL Can Do Better With Rule Changes, with the opinion that although the NFL generally does well in updating the game, the college game does it better – and the NFL needs to follow suit in two specific areas: overtime and replay.

 

A couple of final thoughts on the New Orleans Saints: first, an excellent column by Jeff Duncan of the New Orleans Times-Picayune sums up the situation as well as any I have read anywhere. His column on how the New Orleans Saints’ attitude contributed to the punishment handed down by the NFL pretty much sums up my feelings on the matter, and should be forwarded to any fan, such as this one, who is still complaining about the punishment the team, Sean Payton, Mickey Loomis, and Gregg Williams received. Consider this: Richard Nixon was not forced from office due to the break-in; it was the coverup that did him in.

 

Bill Belichick has always been a big proponent of finding specific roles for his players to fill. He seeks versatile players that can do more than just one thing, whether it be receiver Troy Brown playing defensive back or Mike Vrabel catching touchdown passes as a tight end. This is nothing new; how is it that others such as the head coach at Texas State are just noticing that now?

Texas State may have a two-way football player this fall. Chase Harper, a 6-foot-5, 260-pound transfer from Pflugerville Connally via Navarro College, plays tight end for the Bobcats, but head coach Dennis Franchione also plans to play him as a pass-rushing defensive end for up to 10 snaps a game.

“He doesn’t have to learn the whole defense,” Fran said Saturday. “I’m not saying he is, but he could be the best athlete on our team.”

Fran took notice of New England Patriots versatile Julian Edelman, who returned punts and one game played 25 snaps at both wide receiver and defensive back and figured why not. “Let’s find out if other players could be utilized,” Fran said.

The team’s top wideout, Isaiah Battle, could fill in as a nickel back, and hard-hitting cornerback Darryl Morris could run a deep route or two. Harper caught four passes in Saturday’s Maroon-Gold game and also blew up running back Marcus Curry on defense. And the dude almost went out for the Texas State basketball team, too, after playing that sport at Navarro.

 

New England Patriots Pro Shop bargain of the day: Three Games To Glory for just one dollar. Yeah it’s on VHS, but maybe you can transfer it to DVD if your original copy is getting worn out.

 

Mad Men returned for the first time in forever, and it didn’t disappoint. How long has it been since they aired a new episode of the series? The last time we got to see something from them that was not a rerun Rob Gronkowski and Aaron Hernandez had yet to play a down in the NFL, and fans were complaining about the Pats wasting two early draft picks on tight ends.

 

 

On April 2, 2002 the New England Patriots were welcomed to the White House following there first Super Bowl victory.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Here are a few other events that happened on April 2 over the years.

 


Ponce de Leon discovered Florida on April 2, 1513.

 

Danish writer Hans Christian Anderson (The Ugly Duckling; The Princess and the Pea) was born on this date in 1805.

 

Founder of the Chrysler Corporation, Walter Chrysler was born on April 2, 1875.

 


The actor best known for his work as Jed Clampett, Buddy Ebsen, was born on April 2, 1908. He was also Fess Parker‘s sidekick on Davy Crockett, detective Barnaby Jones, and was cast in The Wizard of Oz – first as the Scarecrow, then as The Tin Man – but had to leave in the middle of production due to allergies to that character’s makeup. Ebsen passed away in 2003 at the age of 95.

 


To many he is Obi-Wan Kenobi, but Alec Guiness (born on April 2, 1914) had a very distinguished acting career prior to Star Wars, including roles in Lawrence of Arabia and Bridge on the River Kwai.

 

President Woodrow Wilson asked Congress to declare war on Germany on April 2, 1917.

 


Dragnet‘s Sergeant Joe ‘just the facts, ma’am’ Friday, Jack Webb, was born on April 2, 1920

 


Singer Marvin Gaye was born on April 2, 1939.

 


Musician Leon Russell was born on April 2, 1942.

 

Linda Hunt, who won an Oscar for her performance In The Year Of Living Dangerously was born on April 2, 1945.

 


Country singer Emmylou Harris celebrates her 64th birthday today; hard to believe she’s that old.

 

Ronald Palillo - Horshack on Welcome Back Kotter - turns 57 on Monday.

 

Infamous police brutality victim Rodney King turns 46.

 


On April 7, 1974 The Sting won seven Oscars, including Best Picture.

 

On April 2, 1982 Argentina invaded the Falkland Islands, seizing control until surrendering on June 14.

 


Drummer and orchestra leader Buddy Rich died at age 69 on April 2, 1987.

 

‘Teflon Don’ John Gotti was convicted of murder on April 2, 1992.

 


Motown singer Edwin Starr, who sang what may be the greatest anti-war song ever, died on this day in 2003 at the age of 61.

 

On April 2, 2005 Pope John Paul II, history’s most well-traveled pope and the first non-Italian to hold the position since the 16th century, died at the age of 85.

 

 

 

 

For more, follow on Twitter @AllThingsPats

 

 

 

 

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