April 20, 2021

Boston Herald's Karen Guregian on The Patriots Off-Season, NFL Draft Needs and Julian Edelman's Release and Retirement.

Boston Herald's Karen Guregian on The Patriots Off-Season, NFL Draft Needs and Julian Edelman's Release and Retirement.

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On this episode of Missing The Point: We're joined by longtime New England Patriots beat writer for The Boston Herald,  Karen Guregian.

We'll talk to Karen about Cam Newton's return to the Patriots in the Patriots expensive offseason (3:02), how beat writers have had to adjust the storytelling during the pandemic (49:00)

And we'll also discuss the release and retirement of Julian Edelman. (57:50)

Hosts: Mike Marcangelo, Joe Malkin
Guest: Boston Herald's Karen Guregian (Follow Her on Twitter) Twitter.com/KGuregian
Producer: Craig D'Alessandro

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Transcript

 

Craig D'Alessandro  00:00

On this episode of missing the point we're joined by longtime New England Patriots beat writer for The Boston Herald  Karen Guregian will talk to Karen about cam Newton's return to the Patriots in the Patriots expensive offseason, how beat writers have had to adjust the storytelling during the pandemic. And we'll also discuss the release and retirement of Julian Edelman. This is missing the point, Episode 54. But it's all relative.

 

Michael Marcangelo  00:37

Welcome to missing the point I am your host Michael Marcangelo joined by Joe Malkin and today we have a very special guest. She has covered all the local sports teams including the Red Sox Bruins and patriots for the Boston Herald since 1984. She's also covered to Winter Olympics, along with men's and women's professional golf, tennis and soccer. She is currently working as the featured patriots beat columnist. Please welcome from the Boston Herald. Karen Guregian. Thank you so much for taking the time and welcome to the show.

 

Karen Guregian  01:08

No thanks for having me.

 

Michael Marcangelo  01:10

Absolutely. We are super excited. Obviously this offseason has been one of the one of the most notable in patriots history or at least recent patriots history. So we want to talk a little bit about that the draft then obviously the big news with Julian Edelman being cut and retiring, but I think we'd like to start first with just the offseason know they spent a ton of money this offseason to acquire you know, Hunter Henry Jonnu Smith, Nelson Agholor Nelson, Matt Judon, Jalen Mills Kendrick Bourne, the list goes on. It's very un-Patriot like so it just based off of your experience with this team was Belichick forced to do this in the offseason, because of how last year went

 

Karen Guregian  01:52

forced might be strong. But I think Tom Brady leaving and winning, although they will never admit it played a little bit of a factor going seven and nine and missing the playoffs was another factor. And the third factor, I think, is the fact that they haven't really done well in the draft. And the draft is your lifeblood. And it's the thing that kind of helps you keep on with sustained success like the Patriots have had for two decades. Although some people like to argue if you have Tom Brady, it doesn't matter who you have around you, but it does. So they've bought a few drafts. And basically, the roster that they had last year, had a ton of holes with it. And so they really acknowledged such and reloaded, and they had the money to do it. That was the other thing. Last year

 

Joe Malkin  02:53

was such a strange year for this team. for a lot of reasons. Right. So Tom Brady, the cornerstone of the franchise leaves for Tampa, as we mentioned, and we've mentioned so many times in the show, Mike and I go back and forth on that constantly, even when we're not on the show. And then they take a long time to bring in a quarterback they bring in Cam Newton who we know is damaged goods at the time that he resigned. He comes in. And at the beginning of the season, it didn't look like a seven to nine season right? I mean, Edelman had a career game against Seattle, Cam Newton looked great against Seattle. And it really looked like things were clicking and then the COVID bug hit. And cam went down and Julian went down with an injury. You mentioned them going seven and nine last year was a part of that. But knowing the kind of year it was going to be going in? Would you say that they kind of knew what they were going to be getting into and going seven and nine with that roster. Was there any satisfaction in that?

 

Karen Guregian  03:50

Well, there's a couple things. I don't know if obviously, the pandemic came, and they also lost eight players, right, was the most any other team had in the league. But just getting back to your point, you know, my understanding is that, you know, Coach Bella check, wanted to move on from Tom Brady, not just this past year, but several years before. And, you know, his initial plan was Jimmy Garoppolo. But you couldn't dump Tom Brady when he's winning Super Bowls. So the thing that surprised me the most was the most prepared guy in the business wasn't prepared for Tom Brady's departure. And it's not like you know, whether you think it's, you know, between his age and the fact that Bella check was trying to push them out the door. The fact that they were kind of so ill prepared for it, actually really stunned me But getting back to the record and seven and nine and with the roster In the quarterback and COVID, that was probably a good record for that team. Yeah,

 

Michael Marcangelo  05:05

I was gonna say it in reality, it just looked a lot worse than it. I guess it actually was right. I mean, because seven and nine with what they had on the field at times, their defense was not that bad, especially when they had all those people out, you would have thought it would have been a little bit worse. So, you know, a lot of fans, I am myself included, believe that Bella check went into that season, just thinking that no one would be as prepared for everything else as he would that's normally the case. So seeing how that played out, was that another reason why he went in, maybe overspent for some players this offseason? Because he didn't want to get caught off guard again,

 

Karen Guregian  05:44

perhaps. But I also think there's an owner in there who wasn't very happy. Yeah. And I mean, we heard it from him a few weeks back when he, you know, spoke to the media after the league meetings. I think it was like the first week of April. And, you know, he pointed out that it was a horrible feeling. Basically, how the season went, how it ended having a losing season. And he also pointed to failed drafts. So, you know, if the owner is not happy, it gets back to the head coach without question

 

Joe Malkin  06:25

was one of those things where we finally saw after 20 years, two decades of success, as you mentioned, Karen, we finally saw Robert Kraft call Oh, Bill Belichick really in his own way. And to that end, we saw a lot of personnel moves, not just players, but also in the front office. Nick Caserio departs for Houston, which sounds like he's having an interesting time down there. Right now they bring in Dave Ziegler, or keep Dave Ziegler, honest, Director of player personnel de facto G. Matt, Patricia comes back as a scout, thank goodness, he won't be on the sideline. But we'll get to that in a few minutes as well. These moves were made in the front office. And then Robert Kraft also mentioned that there's been a change in philosophy and Bill Belichick kind of feel that a question in his press conference today about that. And he seemed to stumble over his words. And almost to me this was my personal feeling is that he did not seem happy with the way it's gone. But he also kind of had a little bit of resolve and as voice that he kind of understands that's what needs to happen, because of all the things that Robert pointed out. So keeping Dave Ziegler on as the director of player personnel keeping him from going to Denver, are we seeing that in front of our eyes, that's really not real relief of power from Bill Belichick, but taking the pressure off of him a little bit as the GM and letting other personnel in the front office make decisions?

 

Karen Guregian  07:45

You know, I'll believe that when I see it, I really well, you know, belt bill can delegate, but he still has the final say over every decision. It's not like he's going to be letting Dave Ziegler make the decision on the first draft pick. Basically, bill gets all the information, and then decides for himself either based on what his scouts and people are telling him, but he also likes to chat with his friends in the coaching community. And I mean, other decision makers do the same thing. Why wouldn't you call Nick Saban to try and get a scouting report not only on Alabama players, but players that Saban has gone against? And it just might be that Belichick has relied a little too much on that type of information. But here's the other I think the bigger picture issue here is, and maybe Belichick, also realize this. When you have a tom brady for quarterback, or at least for the majority of the two decades, he was under center. He could cover up for a lot of the bad drafts and the bad signings and

 

Joe Malkin  09:11

 bad play calling

 

Karen Guregian  09:12

flat, bad everything. I mean, he was the biggest wart, you know, cover of the mall, because they could still win because they had him. They could still win with him with junk receivers. As he got older, that changed a little bit he could no longer be that kind of Superman, who fix everything. So why did they reload all across the board? Because I almost think I could be wrong. I think coach Belichick wants to win in spite of the quarterback

 

Michael Marcangelo  09:53

that we've we've heard a lot, especially in this area over the last you know, 20 years that coach Belichick must really have to over perform because of the underperformance of GM Belichick . Right. And it feels like this year. They're trying to quit. He's trying to close that gap a little bit. And he filled all the holes that that were apparent to us. Would you say you're seeing as you've been around the team since, you know, 1984 100

 

Karen Guregian  10:17

years? Yeah.

 

Joe Malkin  10:19

Long before Belichick 

 

Michael Marcangelo  10:21

Right. Is it fair to say that this is the most important offseason that you've experienced in Bill Belichick time here?

 

Karen Guregian  10:30

Yeah, I would think so. I mean, he's had a couple where he had to go he literally had to go get Brady some weapons at one point, the might Randy moss here, moss, Welker, etc. You know, the, you know, what the standard here, though, is so different than anywhere else. Yeah. He expectation, with or without Brady is they're going to contend and be in the Super Bowl. And when you fall short, I mean, people used to get upset if they didn't either get to this role, or get into the Super Bowl. Yeah. Now it's like, oh, my God, they can't even get into the playoffs. So again, the dynamics have changed a little bit. But as I said, they don't have the ultimate fixer upper. And I don't want to diminish belichick in this because I think, because of his coaching, I mean, they did get seven wins. Right? themselves. So when you have the greatest coach on the sideline, now I guess he thinks I better get some some actual talent around me. So we can do more.

 

Michael Marcangelo  11:46

Yeah, that Oh, seven offseason that you just brought up. It's the first thing that I thought about, but then I stepped back and I said, Well, they were in the AFC title game The year before he retooled just to get to the Super Bowl. Right?

 

Karen Guregian  11:57

Correct.

 

Michael Marcangelo  11:58

Now, he has to retool just to stay maybe relevance in the division that is moving exponentially up the ladder more than ever more than it has in the last 20 years.

 

Karen Guregian  12:08

That's a great point, Mike, because they could get away with having mediocre teams and Tom, because they would always win the division and they could win it in their sleep. But finally Buffalo's woken up Miami's getting there. And I still think the Jets are below but with a new coach, a new quarterback, a new everything, maybe? Well, we'll see if they blow it with the second pick. They tend to blow it but they could be up and coming as well. So it's not the cupcake or lollipop division, or as Dan Shaughnessy was, say, tomato can division that they've been used to in the past. I mean, they're gonna have to work to win.

 

Joe Malkin  12:56

So working to win brings up a really good question here, right? Because we just talked about how they lost, they lost the quarterback. And you're right, Bill was trying to rid himself of Tom since he drafted Jimmy. And when he did do that everyone was a little surprised. And then of course, you can't just keep the 25 year old quarterback until the ageless wonder decides to retire. But now they're in a situation where they have Cam Newton, who Mike and I both believe will be better this year just by the property of the fact that well, he's probably not going to catch up knock on wood not gonna catch COVID this season. They put actual weapons around him. They've really retooled the defense. They're gonna have a lot of those guys back, of course with the loss of Chung on the defensive side. But is Cam Newton the starting quarterback for the New England Patriots in your mind, in your opinion? And can he get them back to the playoffs this season?

 

Karen Guregian  13:50

I think he will be for a couple of reasons. One, I don't think Jimmy Garoppolo is headed this way, at least this year. Although we'll see we'll see how if the 49ers come down on their asking price. And number two, if the Patriots draft a quarterback that quarterback there's it's doubtful he'll just step right in plus. Bill Belichick is loathe to play rookies, much less a rookie quarterback. So I see it as being Cam’s offense to run and I agree I can't see him being worse than last year. And with time with the time he's had to understand the playbook more One, two. I know for a fact he's been working on his footwork, which was a mess. His mechanics were a mess last year, but again with COVID and what the situation in the guidelines. It was hard for the Patriots to sit to try and fix all that they would try to teach them to play book. So he's working to try and get his mechanics back again. His shoulder bothers me as the bounce passes all the bounces. We saw. I don't know if you can fix that. But if cam is better, they will be better.

 

Joe Malkin  15:18

As Mike has said he still accounted for 20 touchdowns eight passing, and 12 rushing. Yeah. And if he doesn't have the COVID game, and he plays better with the weapons around him, he could have eight more touchdowns which could mean three to four more wins. That's basically my paraphrase.

 

Michael Marcangelo  15:34

Well, yeah, I mean, I was my back was against the wall there and I don't we don't need to. I don't need to embarrass myself further, but cam almost has to start there. Right. Like unless the Unless, you know, you can get a Justin fields or you know, a Trey Lance. But

 

Karen Guregian  15:51

I was gonna take that time out. What about Jarrett Stidham? You're forgetting about good old Jarrett.

 

Joe Malkin  15:56

How do you feel about good old Jarrett? Instead of that? We're gonna ask that question. Hey, I just don't care. Well,

 

Michael Marcangelo  16:01

I want to hear your thoughts on that. But if he if bill were to start anybody, but cam after spending upwards of $150 million his offseason? What like if Cam winning 11 games, doesn't that validate the spending?

 

Karen Guregian  16:16

Yeah. And guess what? I actually looking at the schedule, which isn't too tough. Yeah, I picked out 11 wins. And that's with Cam as a quarterback. So it could be more. I mean, it's not the toughest. You're playing third play schedule, basically. Right. And there are some tough games in there. But again, I came out with 11 wins with cam throw in the football. So that's it. That should tell you a lot 

 

Joe Malkin  16:48

to that end to you know, when I see him, I'm thinking of it as we're talking about this. But this is a perfect situation for Bill almost to draft a quarterback not bring Jimmy back, although Jimmy was supposed to be this guy, right? But this is a good situation, because he's only got cam for another year, you draft that guy. And now he has the keys to the car, where he's not waiting for Mr. Tom Brady six times Super Bowl winning quarterback to walk out the door. He can just say cam, hey, that's gonna do it. And this kid, you know, this gets taken over. And now he's got this guy for the future.

 

Karen Guregian  17:18

Yeah, and with cam being kind of such a good soldier. And I do think he's a good soldier, I would watch for the Patriots drafting someone more like him than Tom Brady. And by that, I mean, a mobile type quarterback. Because again, if they're re, they're not changing up the whole offense, but they're making it more suitable. Or they tried at least last year to make it more suitable to cam. And I'm sure they're going to do even more things to make it suitable for a mobile running quarterback. So why would you pet Why would you draft the future? And have them be a pocket passer or? Yeah, just again, I'm just trying to think logically.

 

Joe Malkin  18:07

You mentioned them trying to put the tools around cam for it to be an offense more around him. And I have my own personal thoughts on Josh McDaniels. But in terms of the play calling, and the personnel, does this team that they're putting around cam remind you at all of the teams that Ron Rivera built around him and Carolina

 

Karen Guregian  18:25

a little bit, I mean, because they had a great tight end, I don't know if they had two great tight ends, but they had their speed guy, and they had a really good tight end outlet. I mean, it's sort of, it's a little mindful of, for me the Ravens current offense. Right with with the mobile, Lamar Jackson, who are his favorite receivers, the two tight ends, they do have a speed guy as well, but it's run first Smash Mouth, throw to the tight ends, and basically bully everybody down the field. It's bully ball. And the Patriots have a great offensive line in my view. And that's where it starts. And again, if you if you try and not force cam to throw the ball 30 times you're going to win games with him throwing the ball 20 times and then running it, maybe 30 to 40 times a game. He just needs to hold on to the football.

 

Michael Marcangelo  19:30

Yeah, just hold on to it. So you brought up bully ball and I never really thought about this too, because when you think about last year, they had all of the the tools in place to be that ground and pound offense right. But in the redzone they had no one to bring in the football right to catch it. They had no real target. So now what do you like, for someone who again, who's covered the team for a very long time, right? How I'm trying to figure out how to ask this question. I'm having I'm having Joe Malkin moment over here. Why? Yeah, what's the ceiling for this red zone offense in your opinion?

 

Karen Guregian  20:08

Oh, I think it just it multiplied because obviously, there was only one way they were to get the ball in last year and that was running it. If, because in defenses knew it, Seattle knew it. When they stopped cam on the goal line. If you if you know you're not going to pass the ball because you have no targets or no viable guys, why bother. But now defenses are going to have to pay attention to those tight ends, they're going to have to pay attention to Agholor , they're going to have to, they're going to have to play a lot more honest as opposed to stuff in the box. So I think exponentially, they'll be better in the red zone, just for the fact that they have a couple people now that defenses are going to have to keep their eye on as opposed to cam and the running backs.

 

Michael Marcangelo  21:03

It's a great point. Now before we move on to the draft, what are your thoughts on Jared? Stidham? Because we did you lose faith after the Kansas City game?

 

Karen Guregian  21:12

In him or Hoyer?

 

Michael Marcangelo  21:15

Oh, yeah, Paul Hoyer is gone. Right. But I mean, what a deflating experience if you're a fan of sit on, right?

 

Karen Guregian  21:22

Well, it's the whole Stidham experience has been odd. Yeah. Because when Brady left, it was put out that Stidham was the guy, he was the guy he was going to you they were pumping him up, like, you know, we're all set. Don't worry stedim steady, come on, did the kid he's gonna be the guy. And then at some point, during the offseason, when he was off at weddings or whatever, on the weekend, he kind of fell out of favor. And that's when they pull on the put on the full court press to get cam at the last minute. So again, they see him in practice every day. We don't get to see and especially last year, we didn't really get to see much. So something must have changed their outlook and thinking about him. And I think you saw it when he played. Obviously he can throw the ball. He threw the ball better than cam. . But again, it's all a quarterback isn't just throwing the football. It's decision making. . And he was hesitant, and he wasn't always getting rid of the ball in that rapid kind of fashion. Does that mean it'll never happen? I don't know. It takes some quarterbacks time, but it just seems that the Patriots have moved past him.

 

Joe Malkin  22:55

It's so interesting, because we talked about Stidham and Cam Newton when he came in, I was high on cam when he came in because he has been a very good quarterback. He's always been a good soldier. He's, he's, he's a great, he's a great football player. Let's just put out there like he's an incredible athlete. He's in a beast of a human being. And they you know, we've had guys like Jimmy Garoppolo come in, they drafted Ryan Mallett, you know, early on in the early 2000s 10s, thinking he was going to be the next guy after Brady again, who would have known that Tom Brady would just stick around for so long. And so many people want that guy that's just going to step in and be the next Brady and then we hear that so often. But what people don't realize is that Tom Brady was drafted and sat behind four guys. Yeah, he was a fourth guy. He was sitting up in a box and in 2000, and he was behind John Friesz  and, and Damon Huard . And when he came in, I remember I was at the game he came in when Moe Lewis knocked Drew Bledsoe out of the game. And as much as we want a guy like Brady, who's going to step in and be great, it took him a while to get there to that NFL level. It took them a year of being a number four quarterback and now we look at Jarrett Stidham I almost see them on two opposite ends of the spectrum because I think it's taken them too long. And Tom did it in a very short period of time. So to me, fans have to realize it's not just going to happen overnight and it's may not be that next guy we may have to deal with a year another year I say deal with it as if I'm dismissing him but cam is going to be better this year. But people if they do draft a quarterback they're gonna have to wait a year more of cam before we see that guy.

 

Karen Guregian  24:32

Let me just flat go back cuz You've made me think of something interesting. Yeah, Brady was one of four quarterbacks, I believe. But if you talk to or go back and read reports coming out of that training camp, there are a lot of store Alright, so we had Bledsoe and two q word and whoever else was there. It was John Frisez, john freeze or whatever. Leave there might I think there might have been fog. But anyway, most of the reporting that was coming out of training camp was that Brady was the best quarterback on the field day in and day out. And the people who covered the Patriots then weren't like totally shocked. That's who Belichick went to. When Belichick when letsa was blown up by Mo Lewis, but obviously, they he was a game manager, or they had him basically manage and not make mistakes that first year. And then gradually, they gave him more they gave him more run of the offense. But it did take a while before Brady wasn't that game manager type. So it'll be the same thing with a rookie coming in.

 

Joe Malkin  25:55

So Mike, I have to correct us there. It was Drew Bledsoe was the number one and that was Michael Bishop.

 

Karen Guregian  26:00

Yeah, that's it. Yeah. What

 

Michael Marcangelo  26:03

I think it's fair to say that Bledsoe, and I got what's on my mind, Brady, was not only the best quarterback on the field during that time, but he also gained as you said those extras because he you know that he would go out there and not lose you a game. Bill can't say that about him. Now we saw he can make those intermediate passes between the 20s. But in the like, in the redzone. He just doesn't have it.

 

Karen Guregian  26:26

Could you see him? That is the best case in point, with a minute left on the clock and Super Bowl, moving them into field goal range, like Brady calmly did that year. Right? No, you can't. No. So and that's that's the difference.

 

Joe Malkin  26:47

That's what I mean is it's just taken them longer. And again, we don't need the next Tom Brady, because the next Tom Brady may never come along. We may never see that ever again, isn't it? Well, that's the first pet Well, the second Patrick mahomes. But the that was that Super Bowl 36 drive where he brought the team down the field to get in field goal range for that 48 are from out of military game I was that still brings me a tear to my eye and chills to my bones to this day. That was the second greatest drive of his career. And the first was the final drive against Atlanta to win the game in the Super Bowl and the comeback. But you're absolutely right. cinnamons never I don't think he's ever going to be that guy. And I think I would much rather Cam Newton with a minute left a minute Super Bowl. Jared stone.

 

Karen Guregian  27:31

Yeah. Because, again, Newton has limitations now. But he still has that savvy and he's a veteran and he he's not intimidated. By the moment. Let me put it that way. Hey, he wasn't intimidated coming in replacing the greatest of all time. He wasn't. And that's why I thought he was like a great last minute choice. Because Newton isn't fazed. So what well, he had all due respect to Brady but Brady's Brady cam. I wear a cape too. And he was ready to go. But again, the circumstances weren't conducive to him being successful. And that was right off the right from jump coming in the first of July. And trying to learn a complex offense, with no real offseason, no offseason games and then getting COVID after week three or two or whatever it was. And it just, he had little to no chance of being really successful.

 

Joe Malkin  28:43

Before we move on to the draft I want to make make another or ask another question to that and see what you think from kind of more of the inside. Did those same factors affect Josh McDaniels? The same way?

 

Karen Guregian  28:57

Well, I think all it had to, because basically, he went back to what everyone called the high school off. I mean, they couldn't do most of the things that they usually do. It was just too complex and complicated for cam to get in a moment's notice almost. So he had to really go to the basic of basics. ON CAM even said it when he came back from COVID it's like they had moved ahead and he was still behind. Yeah, so it was just hard for it all to jive

 

Michael Marcangelo  29:40

what one last question before we move to the draft because now with all this cam is not going to be as bad talk. I want to fast forward a year right. Let's say that the Patriots go 13 and four, they don't win a Super Bowl. Cam does well, and they draft a quarterback this year. What do you do? Do you keep Can you mind That could be a world they live in. Right?

 

Karen Guregian  30:03

Except here's the difference. He's gonna cost more. Yeah, you're gonna cost a lot more. I mean, the thing that makes him attractive now, a was the cost. And he actually knows the system better than somebody who would be coming in fresh even though he still is technically learning the system. Yeah.

 

Michael Marcangelo  30:27

Yeah, that's always interested me is because now again, it's like GM bill and coach Bill are not really working in unison right? Because if they improve the team around cam so much that his performance improves and they don't draft the right guy, then we're doing this all over again next year. Yeah, but they don't have the solution. So and so that moves us to this year's draft, the Patriots had the number 15 overall pick? Do you think that they will move up to to reach for a quarterback maybe nine or 10 for Justin fields if he falls, or are we gonna see what we usually see out a bill in the first round, either it's a defensive player, or they trade out of the first for three seconds.

 

Karen Guregian  31:09

My gut tells me that they will pick a defensive player, and only because the really good ones are going to, I mean, they're in a rare spot at number 15. While it's not good to get the best quarterbacks, it's good to perhaps land a franchise type cornerback linebacker defensive lineman and that's Bill's wheelhouse right quarterback is not his wheelhouse. Even though he did snag Brady in the sixth round. Oh, my that's what my gut tells me. But again, you just spent over 300 million. Again, then, I wasn't so much surprised by him spending it was how much he spent. And I was my jaw actually dropped. Day two, like he gets john smith day one. And then the first thing you hear day two, they sign Henry to and I'm going on my head. You know, I mean, but you know what, they had a plan. They had players they wanted, and they just meticulously went about landing them. If they didn't land one, they just moved to the next guy, boom, boom. And I mean, that's great. They had a plan. I hope they have a similar plan with the draft and I would hope that they have a plan for the quarterback. So I mean, if that's the case, maybe they do move up to eight or nine or somewhere where they can get somebody but I don't think they're gonna push it or force it.

 

Michael Marcangelo  32:54

For what it's worth. And john, I'm sorry to cut you off here. I'm never the one to do this. But Belichick has actually done pretty well with quarterbacks when you think about it. Right. Brady? Cassell, preset Garoppolo. He hasn't really well. He's missed a lot, too. But I don't think I think his worst area of drafting I'd be really interested to hear your perspective. Karen. is wide receiver.

 

Karen Guregian  33:18

I mean, easy. Close. Yeah. Well, Chad

 

Joe Malkin  33:24

Jackson wasn't an all Pro.

 

Michael Marcangelo  33:27

Aaron Dobson, Ken Ken Drell, Tompkins. It's not great.

 

Karen Guregian  33:31

Yeah, I mean, in his best receiver that he drafted was a quarterback. So Edelman. So I mean, he actually he, I'll take that back. He also did draft the on branch, and he was pretty good again, but I think the the, it's tougher to draft receivers in because of, again, the type of what they're expected to do. And there's a huge difference of what receivers do in college than what they are asked to do. In the pros, particularly in a patriots offense, you're not just running down the field when you're a receiver. I mean, that that is so not the job. If it was they would have lots of talented players, but the receiver really has to be in sync with the quarterback, they have to read the defense, they have to know where everyone is and where everyone's going. And if they see something with the defense that the quarterback sees, they have to know to go to what spot to negate that type of defense, like the play just goes to blows up in smoke, and they go to another spot. So there's actually some thinking and intelligence involved in that and that's not everyone's cup of tea. I mean, you can have this the greatest athlete at receiver and they can run a for two or three zipped down the field. But what good is it if, again, you're not on the same page with the quarterback? So there's a lot more to it. The trouble is even in a great wide receiver draft, they seem to draft the wrong guy.

 

Joe Malkin  35:16

Yeah, sure. Right. They kill Harry. We could have had DK Metcalf and Steph. But that brings up a good point because it's as bad as he's been drafting wide receivers. With that kind of analysis. You look at the receivers and he did draft not the greatest guys of all time. The guys that he brought in, he brought in Welker. He drafted Edelman, he drafted branch, but he also had other guys who drafted David Givens. reshade. Caldwell, they brought in guys over the years that were maybe smart,

 

Karen Guregian  35:45

maybe not the one of the smartest receivers he's ever had. I mean, he picked up the playbook like that. And he got on the same page with Brady like that. But he again, it's not an it's not street intelligence, it's football intelligence, mostly. And being able to decipher what you're seeing from the defense. And also knowing that your quarterback is seeing the same thing. And you reacting accordingly. As he said, it's not just running down the field or running to a spot, it's being able to adjust based on what you see in front of you.

 

Joe Malkin  36:30

Which is why I believe that DK Metcalf is six is successful in Seattle and would not be successful here. A lot of people

 

Karen Guregian  36:39

know the best example I can give you of this. What a receiver is supposed to have in his brain. You remember the year that Edelman threw the pass to play Brady to Edelman to amygdala that was in a playoff game. week two, I think it was week two or three or whatever game they got blown out by Kansas City in Kansas City. They call that play in the huddle, or it was sent in Amman Dola, who is flanked out left looked at the defense and when Tom looked at amygdala amygdala waved it off and said no, we can't run it. We can't do this. The defense does it won't work with the defense that they have. So no one ever saw that plane for that reason. Wow. And so they kept it in the holster until the next important moment. And when against the Ravens, when Brady looked over at him and Dola gave him the green light and said yes, we can do this. They did it.

 

Joe Malkin  37:53

So Danny Amendola is the key to the Patriots offense, not Tom Brady. Not I'm not putting words in your mouth. But no, it's exactly right. Who would have thought that the two skater bros that were skating around Boston, Julian Edelman and Danny Amendola would have been two of the smartest receivers he's ever played with, which is amazing.

 

Michael Marcangelo  38:10

Earlier in his tenure here. I mean, they did that same thing against in Indianapolis right. It was Brady tipped David Patton to Troy Brown. And and they did that a couple of times. Now, when you mentioned the smartest receiver that you ever that we've ever had here is right. And I've heard that a lot. Conversely, Chad Ochocinco was

 

Karen Guregian  38:31

opposite.

 

Michael Marcangelo  38:32

Right. But I mean, you were there. I heard he was a great practice wide receiver, but just couldn't do it on the field.

 

Karen Guregian  38:39

Well, I mean it when you're just running in practice, you look good. And again, but he was coming from from an offense and Cincinnati were all they really wanted him to do was run down the field. Go straight. Pick, no detours will hit you when he came here. And they told him all that was involved with being a receiver aside from running down the field. I mean, it blew up his brain.

 

Joe Malkin  39:10

Yeah, reggie wayne had the same problem.

 

Karen Guregian  39:12

Yeah. And there was another receiver. I can't think of his name he I think it was a RAM, a former RAM and he was a speed guy to great receiver.

 

Michael Marcangelo  39:24

I know who you're talking about. It was right after Josh came back here the second time around, right? Yeah.

 

Karen Guregian  39:29

And and he just, again, a great receiver somewhere else. Yeah, game here. And it was rocket science, trying to play receiver. So

 

Michael Marcangelo  39:40

you think it's gonna be a defensive pick in the first round? If they don't trade up to nine, nine or nine or 10?

 

Karen Guregian  39:47

I would Yeah. My guess is if they don't make that move. For the quarterback. They will let the best defensive player they can get and take that guy at 15

 

Michael Marcangelo  39:59

will they still be running drafting a quarterback in round and round two, because they don't have a third rounder this year. Right?

 

Karen Guregian  40:04

I'm guessing. Yes.

 

Michael Marcangelo  40:05

So I my I would love Kyle Trask. I don't know if you're familiar with him. I think you're probably more familiar with him than I am. Doesn't he does doesn't he fit what they're building here to?

 

Karen Guregian  40:18

Except that he doesn't fit the cam profile?

 

40:22

Right? Yeah,

 

Michael Marcangelo  40:23

he's not as mobile, right?

 

Karen Guregian  40:26

Nope. Yeah. You wouldn't run a mobile offense with him. I mean, he's a gunslinger. So

 

Joe Malkin  40:33

sorry, sorry, to cut you out. I was just thinking of the defensive player at 15. So let's say they don't trade up. I don't know if Denver is gonna want to trade with them anyway, because Denver, I don't know if Denver gonna ride drew lock to a Super Bowl, who knows. But when they look, when you look at the draft, and you see the defensive players, you mentioned it a few minutes ago that the good defensive players are going to sit there in the middle of the first round, because it's going to be quarterback and in running back wide receiver heavy in the top 10 to 12 picks. And then at 15, there's going to be a defensive player sitting there. Mike mentions drafting a quarterback in the second round, I'm with you. I think it's going to happen that they're going to take a quarterback with their second pick. Could you see them trading back into the first round around 2425, which is currently held by Pittsburgh and the Jets have 23? Could you see them trying to trade back into that area? 23 through 25 to take a quarterback?

 

Karen Guregian  41:26

Yes, I could. Yeah. And that way they can Hey, we get a first round quarterback up? Yeah.

 

Joe Malkin  41:33

Well, you know, it goes to show it'll be interesting to see who picks the quarterback. Let's say they take a defensive player at 15. And then trade back in who's gonna have the most say, like you said, Bill has the final say. But will Josh get to pick his next guy? Because Josh famously drafted a quarterback number 25, while in Denver, actually was he drafted right before? Yeah, we know who that was. So one name I want to throw at you, because I've heard his name a lot lately. And he's actually in the top 10 quarterbacks in the draft. He's listed right below Kyle Trask. And this guy isn't listed as a quick decision maker with legs, kind of, but has off platform accuracy, and that Stanford quarterback Davis Mills.

 

Karen Guregian  42:17

Yep. Yeah, I've seen him linked to the Patriots as well. And again, for me, it depends on the best guy. And I don't know, I'm guessing it would have to be a style fit. Well, look, what the NFL off fences are. Now, how many real pocket passes are there? So do you stay back? Or do you try and get with this century, what I really going to be interested in is, if a quarterback drops, and is available at 15, whether it's Ohio State kid, whether Justin fields, whether it's Mack Jones, or whether it's the North Dakota kid, that's what I'm really going to be interested is if one of them is available, and the Patriots don't have to move. Do they jump on that guy? Right then? Or do they go with defense?

 

Michael Marcangelo  43:18

Yeah, I guess I was gonna say gun to your head if they have their best defensive personnel, like pick right there. Right. And they can get them or they have someone that fell and who knows why they fell at the quarterback position. Based on on on everything that you've ever seen from them. What do you think he does?

 

Karen Guregian  43:35

defense?

 

Joe Malkin  43:38

I think so too.

 

Karen Guregian  43:40

never taken a quarterback in a first round. Not in Cleveland, not here. And again, it's interesting to try and figure out why that might be. Well, when you have Tom Brady, there's no real need. Yep. Right. But in the closest he came was Jimmy Garoppolo. In the second round. 6262 is the highest he's taken any quarterback ever.

 

Joe Malkin  44:07

Throw this scenario involves Jimmy Garoppolo. And this is why I bring it up here. You mentioned that he you couldn't see him coming back. But that's been the rumblings everywhere that we could see Jimmy that they're positioning to do that. Everybody's expecting if anything's gonna happen, it's gonna happen before the draft. Why not after the draft if the 40 Niners go out and get their guy at number three, after training into that spot, which that was an amazing day of training for the 40 vert, really the Miami Dolphins but the 40 Niners may not well there too. They go and take their guy at number three, who's to say they don't turn around and say hey, we just got our guy at three, you know, give us a second rounder this year and a third rounder next year. You can have Jimmy I mean, is that still something that's on the table?

 

Karen Guregian  44:55

Yeah, I think so. I think obviously the 49 is are holding out to get them They can. And I think, because they surrendered every first round pick they had for the next couple years. If they can somehow get a first rounder back, then they get their quarterback. And lesson kind of less than the price they had to pay for him. If they get a first rounder back for Jimmy, they're gonna hold out. Maybe they even hold out longer, again, depending on how desperate another team might be. how desperate are the Patriots? Obviously belcheck doesn't want to play that card. But if you think about it, if belcheck picks this future Pro Bowl defensive player at 15, gets what he wants in the draft and then gives up his number one next year for Jimmy. I don't know, he might do that. I don't think he wants to do that. But I think he loves Jimmy.

 

Joe Malkin  45:58

Oh, he definitely loves Jimmy. I think we all love Jimmy. And honestly, I think he's more attractive than Tom Brady. But that's just me.

 

Karen Guregian  46:07

Can I throw one more scenario?

 

46:09

Absolutely.

 

Karen Guregian  46:11

What if the Patriots are figuring or maybe the 40 Niners are true to what they say. And they want Jimmy to handle the duties one more year while they groom the next guy. Either he comes in week 10 or he doesn't come in at all. And maybe the Patriots will say fine, we'll get them next year. So if they if the Patriots have that in their brain, that might also impact how they go about the draft. Just throwing that out there.

 

Michael Marcangelo  46:46

That's a dangerous line to walk though, don't you think? I mean, we would be relying on Jimmy G. Staying healthy this year and coming back here the year after and being the guy for our offense for would you say like three to five more years and then you still have to fit then you still have to figure this out? Right? When I

 

Karen Guregian  47:06

say impact that might sway them for moving up the board. Okay, one, okay. Yeah, that wouldn't preclude them from taking Davis mills in the second round or later, or Kellen Mond or Kyle Trask. So you still have a future possibility. But you only have cam for one year if you get Jimmy the next year see a cam Hello, Jimmy we and we got Jimmy successor. Right there.

 

Joe Malkin  47:36

I'm getting me to wound up here because now I'm thinking of all these all these scenarios where you know, Cam comes in. And they have a rookie quarterback, you know, depending on how the seasons going, plays a few games in the second half of the year. But he knows Jimmy's coming in next year. So it's just like, there's so many things. He's I'm looking at the draft board now. And I'm like, man, the Patriots can trade away their second round pick. And maybe a pic next year for San Francisco is 43rd. And Jimmy and so it's just amazing if you get into it and really think about the scenarios. And what's going to happen is we're all going to be disappointed. No, Jimmy and Kansas, the guy for the next two to three years.

 

Karen Guregian  48:13

Oh, I wouldn't go that far with.

 

Joe Malkin  48:16

And again, I hope to one day have cam on this podcast because I think he's great. Yeah. And he's a hell of a dresser too. But you're absolutely right about him. And I just think that this team can't go that long. I think he knows it. I think he knows he's coming to the end too

 

Karen Guregian  48:32

well, but as I said before, if he somehow if they have a 1213 win season with him and do fairly well in the playoffs again. He's a free agent. Do you think he's gonna come back on a pay me nothing deal? No. Someone else gonna want him?

 

Joe Malkin  48:51

Well, there was those rumors already this offseason that Washington could have been in autumn because Ron Rivera is there and they were rumored to want to sign up for 25 million. Obviously, those rumors never really came to fruition because it came back here for 14 but just it's an interesting situation with him too.

 

Karen Guregian  49:10

Yeah.

 

Michael Marcangelo  49:11

While we have you Karen, I'd love to talk a little bit about some COVID error related things. The first thing that comes to mind is the Patriots joining a couple other teams and announcing that they will not be participating or the players announcing they're not gonna be participating in the voluntary workouts most

 

49:27

Yes,

 

Karen Guregian  49:27

not all but many I think was the word.

 

Michael Marcangelo  49:32

What do you think Bella checks reaction was to that? Well,

 

Karen Guregian  49:37

I don't think he would be happy but there's still time. Because it's like the first I mean, they technically start on the 19th which is Monday. But the first few weeks are classroom anyway. They're not out on the field right away. So having guys not show up in the building. Isn't that much of a big deal. But it's when, you know, three, four or five weeks down the road when they're actually have otaa, which is essentially a passing camp. It's at that point where push might come to shove. And again, because there's so many new players, two new receivers to new tight ends, Cam still learning the offense, new defense, the rookies who were clearly affected last year will che and Anthony Jennings, they need time on the field. So it's going to be very interesting to see how many of the many show up?

 

Michael Marcangelo  50:42

Yeah, I imagine you cam and every new offensive personnel they signed. They have to I mean, they don't have to vote like double checks, probably saying to himself, you have to be here. Well, I just went out and retold this thing for you. We need time together,

 

Karen Guregian  50:57

right? Hey, Hunter Henry, how much don't we pay? Right? That, you know, how much are we paying you? How much should I how much money they throw down? How much should I guarantee? So yeah, it's gonna be interesting. I

 

Joe Malkin  51:10

wonder if those guys won't be part of the many because we all know that bill is a master contract formulator. And I'm sure that might have been worked into some of those guys contracts. Which brings up an interesting part of the contracts. Why is Matt Patricia's name on contracts? The players are signing?

 

Karen Guregian  51:28

They have to give them something to do. It's not hurting anyone. Right?

 

Joe Malkin  51:37

Right. Yeah, this is what will let you do go find this next next backup cornerback and put your name on the paper. That's funny.

 

Karen Guregian  51:46

Well, I think they're trying to rehabilitate and resuscitate him. I mean, obviously, the Detroit experience was a disaster. So I think, and I also think maybe he's, I mean, talk about the smart guy. He's a smart guy. He is literally a rocket scientist. I mean, so maybe they're just working him in another area to see if he can use that rocket scientist brain of his and help.

 

Michael Marcangelo  52:18

I'm gonna go ahead and jump the gun here, Joe. And Craig, just before you guys do it. I picked the Detroit Lions last year to win the division in a draft in a selection show. I was wrong. I'm often wrong, but I didn't know if that was gonna come up. So I want to get ahead of it with you, Karen. So don't judge me. Right. We all make mistakes in and that question about Patricia signing contracts is an interesting question that I wish people would ask Belichick. Which brings me to my next one. How hard is it to ask the questions that you would normally be able to ask in a press room virtually now? Like how has zoom changed the way in which you get the information that you need to read a story?

 

Karen Guregian  52:53

Well, we got hammered the media on some radio outlets for like, why did you ask bill why he's on cam? Why didn't you ask bill? About Tom Brady? Why didn't you ask? Well, they only we didn't know how much law the length of the window we had belcheck but it turned out to be like 2020 minutes 20 between 2025 minutes. And Bill cleverly in craftily like gave these five minute 10 minute long winded answers that said nothing. My hand was read. Only eight people got to ask a question. And there was about 10 people, including myself with my hand raised, you know how these zoom things work? Yep. And basically, Stacey James , the PR guy said, Sorry, we didn't get to all you. Well, but and then we get lambasted for not asking important questions.

 

Joe Malkin  53:58

we're you redirected by Stacey James  not to ask those questions.

 

Karen Guregian  54:02

But he kept on he limited everyone to not ask ask any kind of follow up question. So in some people did And that, again added to the short window of time. And again, it just, it's not conducive to the best interview for that way not to Bella check. I mean, again, what's he going to answer the question? So what do you think about Tom Brady winning? What was he gonna say? He would just look at you.

 

Joe Malkin  54:37

But we think that's such a silly question. And,

 

Karen Guregian  54:40

but the important question is, what prompted you to bring cam back?

 

Michael Marcangelo  54:44

Yep. Right.

 

Karen Guregian  54:45

Right. What did you see in him last year that nobody else saw something but you could phrase it in such a way that he would probably he probably want to answer the cam question because again, it reflects Back on him. So

 

Joe Malkin  55:02

I was listening to that radio program this afternoon that you're speaking of from two to 6pm on a certain radio station and, and you guys did kind of get lambasted. But the whole time I'm like, what, what the Brady questions like, what is he supposed to say? What answer you're looking for? And what the cam question. That's why a lot of people asked if Stacey James was directing it, because they were. There was concern as to, you know, what does he see in cam and it's the first time we've talked since week 17 of last season. So it was just

 

Karen Guregian  55:33

Well, I had three questions prepared, like I had a bunch of questions prepared thinking, Okay, if this one gets asked, then I'll go to number two, if this one gets asked, I'll go to number three. So the three questions I had one was cam. Two was about the offseason that we just talked about, I was gonna, I would have asked him so the players came out with this statement. How did you feel about that? And where do you stand? What is your expectation? That was a second question I had, and I forget what the third one was. But again, my hand was raised, it never came to me. So I never got to ask any of those questions.

 

Michael Marcangelo  56:15

So how much harder is your job or just the job of the media now? virtually right? Because I think as we're talking about it, a lot of the story that's been written or that, you know, historically has been when someone blurts out a random question. Maybe bill doesn't answer it. But it's the way he doesn't answer it. That's part of the story. Now that portion, that whole dynamic is eliminated. So how have you found it harder to do your job and to get the information that you need to write?

 

Karen Guregian  56:42

Well, just in general, yeah. And not having locker room access, instead of cultivating relationships or being able to perhaps talk to somebody alone? One on One, you're on a zoom call with 50 to 100? People? I mean, somebody asked me, a colleague asked from out of town, hey, do you happen to have cam Newton's contact information, like a phone number, or email or something? And I said, Well, I don't think I'm going to ask him that the zoom call? I mean, that's not something that you would, yeah. Ask a person with 50 other people on looking. We knows that the type of things where you try and foster relationship, we try and get gained some trust. But all of that comes with it with your access in the locker room. So again, all of that is tossed out the window. I'm telling

 

Michael Marcangelo  57:37

you, I think if you had the chance to give him one of your famous apple pies. I think you'd have that eye contact information to disperse amongst all of us, right?

 

Karen Guregian  57:46

Yes, yeah. Well, you know, some of my secrets now, don't you?

 

Michael Marcangelo  57:51

always come prepared? I think one of the last things we want to talk about is Julian Edelman. Right, you you are on the forefront of this story about him retiring, or in or being cut and then retire. So I have a question number one, just about his impact. Like, what, what? How big of an impact has Julian Edelman have in the Patriots organization?

 

Karen Guregian  58:14

Huge. I mean, he carried on the I mean, the whole patriots offense is predicated on is a possession offense, and it and at its height, it flow through the tight end position and the slot receiver position. Going back far as far as Troy Brown, Wes Welker, rady always needed that quick outlet. And again, because he was so good at reading defenses of a quick outlet to the slot guy was one of his best options. When you have a guy is tough is it and will willing to go over the middle to catch those type of passes. I mean, Welker was Edelman was, but that the tight ends, but that's all part and parcel of the offense and how it works best. And element. He was good in the regular season, but he was great in the postseason. And again, having that constant bad guy that, you know, on third down, was going to catch the pass, was going to get seven yards on a third and six was going to get 10 yards on a third and nine who was always going to make the play and move the chains. That's like irreplaceable if you ask me. So did his importance off the charts? In a patriot sense? Yeah.

 

Michael Marcangelo  59:50

And where their favorites were their favors done to him by the Patriots in order for him to still collect money this upcoming year? right because he still is on the books for

 

Karen Guregian  59:59

right By giving him an injury designation, he can still collect, I think 2 million or whatever, a majority of his salary for this season. So he was released with an injury designation. So or his comp was terminated, whatever, however they phrased it, but the way they phrased it was beneficial to him.

 

Michael Marcangelo  1:00:24

Especially what they think of him.

 

Joe Malkin  1:00:26

Yeah, exactly. And they, you know, we've seen this happen a lot around the league, but it's, it was such a weird day, right? Because you were on the forefront of breaking that story, then they come out that they've terminated the contract. And then within an hour, he releases this video, How long had this been known that this was gonna be the path that the Patriots Julian Edelman took?

 

Karen Guregian  1:00:51

Well, I don't. I think that going back to last year, and I think it was after the six week, we had the procedure done. And then toward the end of the season, there was some talk about him coming back, but he didn't. And then, I don't know, a few months ago, Ian Rapoport had a report that basically said things were going great, but he was still he still wanted to give it a go. And you know, all these months later, the name hasn't didn't respond quite the way he was hoping from the procedure. But my information was that it was never going to fully come back. The procedures that they do, might have given him some relief for a short time period. But ultimately, the same problem was going to keep happening, because he, he has basically kind of a bone on bone situation and his left knee. So I mean, they inject lubricants and whatever to help, but ultimately, it's there wasn't a fix for it. So with no fix, oh, he was going to be a tough sell not only here, but anybody else anywhere else.

 

Joe Malkin  1:02:08

Like Tampa,

 

Karen Guregian  1:02:09

like Tampa.

 

Joe Malkin  1:02:11

Because that was the first thought we all had was oh yeah, he's off to sunny South Florida. And that's where he's gonna go to retire with his buddy Tom. And that'll be that. But what happened here in that situation? I mean, we've we saw him play his entire career here, some tiny quarterback out of Kent State, who gets drafted in seventh round and comes

 

Karen Guregian  1:02:30

in and I'm gonna say after the video he put out he would piss off a lot of people. I mean, he said you wanted to retire a patriot and end to patriot. He was done. I've seen another outlet that basically thinks that that down the road window, right before the playoffs, all of a sudden he's going to be coming to Tampa is going to sign them and and have him play in that short window that his knee can, you know, stand up. But again, I don't see that happening. And if I'm Scottie Miller, or one of those guys in that offense, and all of a sudden they pluck up Julian Edelman in December, or January,

 

Joe Malkin  1:03:12

I thought Scotty Miller kind of got the raw end of the deal. And they brought a B in anyway. And then when Tom Brady threw that first half pass to him in the NFC Championship game, I was like, Oh, no, nevermind. Yeah, that relationships good.

 

Karen Guregian  1:03:25

But what I'm saying is, I mean, Tampa. I mean, maybe all of a sudden, every go everyone got hurt in Tampa, but you'd have to hurt quite a few guys because they're loaded beyond loaded.

 

Michael Marcangelo  1:03:36

He would be the ultimate bad guy if you did that. Right. Because right now, yeah, yeah. gronk is not looked at favorably in New England, because of the fact that he retired after free agency that the cost is the ability to go get Jared cook. So what I was thinking about this, I was saying like these situations are very similar in the fact that jewels waited till after, but maybe the Patriots knew, right, that they knew what his what the outcome was going to be. And then they'd already filled the holes for wide receiver. But if you release a Foxborough forever video, and they go to Tampa for November, December, January, there's no coming back from that.

 

Karen Guregian  1:04:13

Let me just flip the narrative just a little bit. Yeah. What if the Patriots again, basically conveyed to him, we can't carry you another year, or we can't have you and a lot of that went into what I wrote. A few weeks back, it was a tough decision for the Patriots to decide what to do with Edelman because obviously they need to upgrade their receiving Corps, which they did. And this is another great beyond great receiver draft. So where does Edelman fit or this guy who's basically playing on one leg. So it's also possible that the page conveyed to him. They're thinking. And between the two sides that it was decided, Edelman sat back and said, well, do I want to do this with another team?

 

Joe Malkin  1:05:14

This is a more generalized question along those lines, because you brought up a good point that I always think about when we see and hear these situations. And there's so much that goes on behind the scenes, and you're a little bit closer to that curtain. But we have those conversations all the time. And I've had this conversation with so many people of, let's use the example of gronk, where they ended up he comes out of retirement, they trade his rights, down to Tampa, and he goes and plays for Tampa, and the rest is history. Everyone sees that his while the Patriots wanted to get something for him and get them off the books. I see it as he wanted to come out and play but he retired a year before because he didn't want to play in New England anymore. The question is how much happens in those conversations that that the public doesn't know about and just sits here and blabber on about and get completely wrong,

 

Karen Guregian  1:06:08

a lot. The Gronksituation, the gronk situation to how I know it is so he retired. And again, he was beating up his body. I mean, all those things were real. But I think it was also in his mind that if Tom ever broke free, and ever play in ever went somewhere else, that would be a possibility. And of course, when Tom went, he called gronk. The thing with gronk is he had all the leverage against the Patriots. And by that, what the his number against the cap they didn't have, they didn't have any cap space. So if he came back, that would trigger in like a nine or 10 million cap hit. And they didn't have that room. So there's one thing not that they couldn't make it. Again, they would have to cut some people, for him to come back to gronk. They could have come back a few said he was coming back, they could have traded him, except gronk was only going one place. Now the Patriots could have said, well, you can come back, but we're going to trade you and then gronk said then I'm gonna stay retired. So for them to get something for him. It had to be with Tampa. So he had all the leverage. It's not like the Patriots will be a nice guys. Right? If that was their only avenue to get something in return. Either that a Brock was just going to stay with stay retired. And perhaps because the Patriots had his rights.

 

Michael Marcangelo  1:08:05

But that all spawned because they tried to trade him back in June of 2018. Right. And he said if you trade now retire,

 

Karen Guregian  1:08:11

correct. And he also said then the only quarterback I'll play with is Brady, one last question

 

Michael Marcangelo  1:08:17

because that little scenario that you just painted about jewels going to tamper at the lake right before Thanksgiving? What are the odds that he comes back here right before Thanksgiving? Would that hold true?

 

Karen Guregian  1:08:29

Could you know he could still retire a patriot? Right? The lie? Like, you know,

 

Michael Marcangelo  1:08:38

like the wheels turning when you said that like well, we thought gronk was gonna do that two years ago before he announced his gronk Beach cruise or Super Bowl party, whatever the hell it was. But at all It feels like the guy that would actually come back and do the junior SEO type of season towards the end.

 

Karen Guregian  1:08:53

Yeah. Well, I mean, what was forecast with him going to Tampa basically rehabbing or do link whatever he had to do to get the knee better? Yeah, because I think it was Mike Florio said he wouldn't be drug tested. Tired, right? Yeah. So he would do whatever it is like to get his knee in the best possible condition to play. And then obviously have that short window of it holding up basically, if it was just the postseason.

 

Joe Malkin  1:09:27

36 year old Julian Edelman coming back. It's amazing how much goes on behind the scenes that the fans think and think we know, cuz we included in it's just it's fascinating to me how close you are to that curtain?

 

Karen Guregian  1:09:40

Well, I think he's still honest to goodness from my information is he definitely still wanted to play. Right. But perhaps when the Patriots maybe indicated that it was best for them organizationally, to move on. Then when he weighs his options, well TF is loaded. Right? And we're gonna take him on with the bad knee and blah, blah, blah. So all things considered when he finally weighed everything, the retirement seemed like the best thing to do two historical questions, and then we can wrap it up. Karen.

 

Michael Marcangelo  1:10:17

Ready? Which patriot team has been your favorite team to cover since you've been in town? And who is your favorite player of all time to cover as well?

 

Karen Guregian  1:10:27

Wow. Well, I geez. I think probably the first one. The one that the underdog team. That was Cinderella. You know? Because again, it wasn't it was was not expected. And once things got unexpected, that changed the whole, you know, they were a lovable team back then they became to the rest of the world of noxious. You know, everyone wanted them to lose. But it was hard that that first that first, I mean, the snow game. I mean, I was standing in the end zone when monetary hit a ball that disappeared. And I had no idea that went through the up. I mean, I could not tell. But just that whole everything, the soup to nuts season for them. I don't know that to me was my favorite. And what was the other question?

 

Michael Marcangelo  1:11:24

Who's your favorite player of all times that you've you've covered or that you've worked with the Patriots?

 

Karen Guregian  1:11:29

Oh, my goodness.

 

Joe Malkin  1:11:32

There's been a few.

 

Karen Guregian  1:11:33

Yeah, yeah. And I probably stupid if I listed one. I'm gonna get rid of me if I don't.

 

Michael Marcangelo  1:11:41

I don't want I so I don't want to hurt any connection. So is it? Okay, if I just come up with one more question?

 

Karen Guregian  1:11:46

Sure. Absolutely.

 

Michael Marcangelo  1:11:47

What was it like in 2004? Right. You're after 2004. When you just mentioned everyone had already turned on the Patriots, because we were a dynasty. But you're from this area. And everyone here was rooting for the Red Sox and hated the Yankees because they were that dynasty. Right? So what was it like having a team you cover be the team that you hated in baseball?

 

Karen Guregian  1:12:09

It was hot. And it's funny. I covered the Red Sox too. When they beat they finally. So the dynamics are on, but it took a little getting used to cuz it's like, it's hard when you because when you'd leave the state. I mean, or listened to radio, every city you went to? I mean, there was like 100. I mean, being spewed everywhere. And it's like, oh my gosh, but the Yankees it's a good perspective. Because they did they became the Yankees essentially. But I also think with them losing last year, I almost think there's a lot of the population the haters out there, who are kind of Yeah, they had their fun moment for a minute, but then it's like, Alright, well, who are we going to root against? Yeah. Yeah, like the enemy was taken away. So I think now those people are rooting for the Patriots to come back so that they can hate them again. You know,

 

Joe Malkin  1:13:11

 Yankees had that transcendent time to after Red Sox won that first World Series. And then it's so interesting because you we talked about it as fans, right. And you mentioned from an outside perspective, unpopular opinion, maybe in this area. But I think the Patriots dynasty was more hateable than the Yankees dynasty.

 

Karen Guregian  1:13:31

Why? Because sandals Well,

 

Joe Malkin  1:13:35

I think the team I think the Yankees team themselves, the players on the teams were more likable than the guys here

 

Michael Marcangelo  1:13:42

than the guys here. I mean, you can make the argument about the coaching stuff. Like Joe Joe Toye versus Bill Belichick in a press conference. It's true.

 

Karen Guregian  1:13:50

Yeah, but I agree. I think that a lot of the hatred starts at the top. And I'm not talking about Bob Kraft, I'm talking about the Darth Vader.

 

Joe Malkin  1:14:01

That's it. That's what I'm talking about,

 

Karen Guregian  1:14:03

you know, and for sure. And once the Patriots started winning, too, they had an error. They did have an arrogance about them. And it didn't help like if you remember the game against the Ravens in the playoffs, were bill all of it, they're behind and they came back to win that game. And like Bill started having linemen catching passes and, and running backs ineligible, and like he was playing with the rulebook. And the Ravens didn't know who to cover because they said the running back was ineligible. So they won that game. And then at the press conference, after Tom Brady made some kind of crack of well, if they know the rulebook, maybe they should study the rulebook. So when you portray that kind of arrogance and stick it in the face of your opponent, that's also frowned upon.

 

Michael Marcangelo  1:14:59

Yeah, I mean, They came back being down 14 twice in that game. And all people remember are the are that that that pass of the tight end, right that he was not undeclared? And then that presser when Brady said, well, it's in the rulebook so you can't be mad at us. That's that arrogance wasn't there and the first run right? Not at all. But the hatred was still reeling oh four, I very much remember. They were like, yeah, we've seen this before that we don't because they had that 21 game winning streak, right and the regular season. So by that time, between oh three and oh, four people had really gotten off the Patriots bandwagon. But

 

Karen Guregian  1:15:35

I also think that I think the team that the Corey Dillon team, whatever that was, might have been like the best. Yeah, as a wagon, defensively and offensively the best team that that they had the perfect season sort of team, but that 2014 was a real wagon without question.

 

Michael Marcangelo  1:15:56

Well, Karen, thank you so much for joining us here. We always want to give you a time to let the listeners know where they can find you. So well. Where can they find you on Twitter or any social media platform?

 

Karen Guregian  1:16:07

Yeah, @KGuregian. I'm also at the Boston herald.com on there, obviously my stuff appears on their website, but @KGuregian on Twitter. So I plus most of my stuff so

 

Michael Marcangelo  1:16:22

we're avid readers. That's how do you think I figured out about the apple pie? Thank you, Bob Socci. So Karen Guregian. Thank you so much for taking the time for for Joel Malkin, Craig D'Alessandro and Michael Marcangelo saying thank you so much for listening to missing the point and we'll talk to you later.

Karen Guregian

Featured Patriots Beat Columnist for the Boston Herald

Karen Guregian has been a member of the Boston Herald sports staff since 1984, performing a variety of jobs. Since 2007, she's covered the Patriots full-time.