Monday, August 8, 2011

New England Patriots continue to add veterans

The New England Patriots are continuing to add veteran players to their roster. After acquiring WR Chad Ochocinco and DT Albert Hayneswoth, the Patriots have added two veterans to the defensive side of the ball over the weekend, DE Shaun Ellis and DE Andre Carter. The Patriots have been known for bringing in aging players and getting good production from them under the leadership of head coach Bill Belichick.

Ellis, who played for the rival New York Jets last season, agreed to a one-year deal with New England over the weekend. The move to join the Patriots irked Jets head coach Rex Ryan who told reporters, “The fact that he chose them and all that, like I said before, there’s no way I’m going to wish him well”. Ellis recorded 4.5 sacks and 36 total tackles last season, and has 72.5 sacks in his 10-year career, all 11 seasons being spent with the Jets.

Andre Carter is entering his 11th season in the NFL. Carter has spent time with both the San Francisco 49ers and the Washington Redskins. In five seasons with the Redskins, he recorded double digit sacks twice but struggled with Washington last season as the club switched to a 3-4 defensive scheme. Carter announced his signing on his Twitter account Sunday night.

The move to sign Carter, who plays much better in a 4-3 scheme, is interesting. After the franchise acquired Albert Haynesworth, another player better suited for a 4-3, speculation arose about the Patriots switching to a 4-3 defense. Amid speculation, New England’s head coach Bill Belichick has deflected questions about the team’s defense. Addressing questions about the team’s possible philosophical defensive switch, Belichick told reporters, “I think honestly that’s something of a media fabrication”. Then again, what would you expect from the master of saying nothing at all when he speaks?

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