Why did Tom Brady have a rotten season? Why won't he be the same when he returns in August? According to Dan Shaughnessy, it's because he's gone soft. And he hasn't gone soft by sniffing wildflowers and professing his love for kittens in meter and rhyme; no, the real reason is because (and please make sure you're sitting down before your eyes behold the startling truth) Gisele Bundchen was feeding him during their Mexican vacation.
The U.S. Marshal for Boston and a federal lawyer improperly arranged government motorcades for the two Fox blabcasters during the 2007 World Series, according to a report by the Justice Department's inspector general.
The report centers on Joseph Band, an attorney for the U.S. Marshal's office in Washington:
Our investigation revealed that Band attended the 2007 World Series games as a paid, part-time sports statistician for Fox Sports, and arranged transportation from both games in an USMS vehicle for himself and for a Fox Sports colleague from one game. In addition, the OIG determined that Band arranged a USMS motorcade escort for the broadcasters' private limousines from Fenway Park following both games. We concluded that Band's conduct violated the standards of ethical conduct for federal employees and USMS policy governing the use of government vehicles.
Yvonne Bronner, acting U.S. Marshal for Boston, assigned deputy marshals to help Band in his Fox work at the two Boston games, the report says.
Oh, but wait, there's more: Seems Band got similar escort treatment at the 2008 Super Bowl, an NFL playoff game in Tampa and a college bowl game in Phoenix in 2007. However, the report says the U.S. Marshal in San Francisco refused to let Band get a motorcade to the 2007 All-Star game in that city.
The report concludes that the U.S. Attorney's office in Boston declined to bring any criminal charges.
NotErnie notes Gil Santos's retirement from WBZ, wishes he would retire from Patriots games as well:
... In the last few years, I have become increasingly frustrated at his inability to correctly name the down, distance or where on the field the ball is even marked. He's got a great voice and when he gets things right, he's tremendous. But he gets too much wrong. ...
Angela's all-Patriots Christmas tree is back up.
Al now knows for a fact that his co-worker is awful, because she's upset "Grey's Anatomy" was replaced by the Patriots game last night.
Would be a good band name. In any case, the Herald tells you way more than you thought you'd ever need to know about his knee. Just in case, though, Bruce Allen rounds up all the media coverage of The Knee.
Angela tried being patient, but Matt Cassel just isn't getting any better:
... He looks just as confused as Week One. Shots of him behind center look like a deer in headlights. His passes are off target, sometimes by miles and he second-guesses almost every throw that isnâ€™t a screen. ...
Chris Collins says good bye to Troy Brown:
... Off the field, he was always just so approachable. Even as his numbers grew and the team's stock soared off the charts, there was never much of change from Brown. He was always the same guy - really humble and a leader. ...
Take your pick sports fans. Sound off.
Dice K gets 18th win, Red Sox move closer to playoffs
(Clinch Tie for Wild-card)
The Sports Network
Toronto, ON - David Ortiz belted a two-run homer and Daisuke Matsuzaka pitched seven shutout innings, as the Boston Red Sox crept closer to a playoff berth with a 3-0 victory over the Toronto Blue Jays in the finale of a three-game set from the Rogers Centre. more
Howie must be working on another book about the Bulgers, or maybe he spent too much time at Fenway with Castig and Obie last night, because based on the amount of time he put into today's CHB-like column about loser Patriots fans, he clearly is too busy to do any actual reporting for the Herald. Or maybe, he just needs a hug.
Adam Pieniazek will not be deterred; predicts the Patriots will win the Super Bowl.
Lewis Forman explains how the Fenway sold-out record has come at the cost of a piece of the soul of Sox fandom:
... It's less of a game and more a destination. It becomes classic blue hats vs. pink hats instead of right handed relief vs. left handed relief. Clam Chowder vs. gourmet pizza instead of a hot dog vs. a box of popcorn. People watching vs. GAME watching.
Papel-blog comes back from an extended blogging break:
The Red Sox are engaged in a three-game set to determine who will emerge in first place in the AL East, and I can't spend the duration of the series making jokes about Derek Jeter's sexual orientation in order to cope. And judging from what went down in Foxboro on Sunday, football is not going to be the stress-reducing distraction from the pennant race that it has been in previous years.
I would like to personally thank the Red Sox for at least temporarily, lifting the spirits of a grieving region. Jason Bay would not want us to cry, people. Jason Bay would want us to be happy. And Jonathan Papelbon would probably make some obscene sock puppets to get us laughing again if he thought that'd work. ...
And, of course, no matter what, we'll always have Debbie CHB Downer to tell us what to think:
Dan likes to portray New England fans as little more than infantile sycophants with a lack of perspective. ...
Indeed, harrumphs Soxaholix:
... Let me get this straight, the same fans who endured 86 years of Red Sox futility *and* years of the Patriots as also rans "are lost boys and lost girls"? ...