2014 DRAFT GUIDE
Ridley, Patriots take 7-2 record into bye week

    2013-11-05 20:26

FOXBOROUGH, Mass. (AP) - Having been pulled after previous fumbles, running back Stevan Ridley is glad his coaches stuck with him after he gave the ball away in the third quarter of Sunday's game against the Steelers.

As it turned out, it was the right move. Ridley finished strong and New England scored 31 points in less than 12 minutes bridging the third and fourth quarters, winning 55-31 to take a 7-2 record into the bye week.

''The ball was on the ground and that was definitely the low point of my night for sure,'' Ridley said Tuesday. ''For the coaches to stick with me and ride it out, it said a lot.''

Ridley was separated from the ball by one of the game's best - Troy Polamalu - after catching a pass from Tom Brady, and Pittsburgh recovered before going in for the first of two touchdowns that tied the game 24-24.

A likely scenario for getting pulled from the game. It didn't happen.

He wound up running for 60 yards over the rest of the game, capped by 18 yards on three straight plays with a 5-yard run giving him his second touchdown of the game to make it 41-24. He finished with 115 yards on 26 carries - his first 100-yard game of the season.

''For me, it wasn't a time to hang my head, it was a time for me to go out there and try to close the game out because that's what our team needed me to do,'' he said. ''That's really what I did - I just leaned on my offensive line; they had made some creases in there for me the whole night and that was a tough defense we went against.

''I hated (fumbling). Like I said (Sunday), it made me sick. I really think that it motivated me more to go out there and finish the game strong.''

After going the first five games of the season without a touchdown, Ridley has scored in four straight games, with six touchdowns over that span.

He's also been holding onto the ball better.

''My team, everybody's made their mistakes at different times; that's something that I've had to work on and focus on since I've been here,'' he said.

It's no secret that an effective running game takes the pressure off Brady - and everything worked right as Brady, with tight end Rob Gronkowski and wide receiver Danny Amendola on the field together for only the second game, put up 432 yards and four touchdowns.

''Fifty-five points is a lot, however we get them, through the ground or through the air,'' Ridley said. ''It was once again another balanced attack and I've said that all year - when we run the ball on the ground Tom always goes out there and does great work through the air, and these receivers have been making some catches, they're also blocking down field. I think we're just playing team ball.

''It's coming back around. People are getting healthy and some of our key players are coming back. I'm liking the direction we've been going, but we still have a lot of work to do and we have to keep improving.''

The Patriots return with a game at Carolina on Monday night, Nov. 18.

''We've shown flashes of what we can do and how good we can be, but that doesn't say anything for the upcoming weeks,'' said Ridley, who added, ''It was definitely a step in the right direction.''

NOTES: S Steve Gregory broke a thumb Sunday and will like miss a few weeks. . The Patriots released WR Austin Collie, who injured a knee in Sunday's win, and signed WR LaQuan Williams. The oft-injured Collie appeared in four games with New England, catching three passes, two of them on the winning drive against New Orleans on Oct. 27. ... New England added RB Cierre Wood to the practice squad. . Patriots coach Bill Belichick, asked about the off-field situation in Miami and whether the Dolphins' troubles makes him appreciate the leaders he has in his locker room, said, ''I definitely appreciate our players. Look, they work hard. They put the team first. They've done what we've asked them to do all year. We've been demanding but they've been responsive. I have a lot of appreciation for our players, no question.'' Belichick, talking about the health scares of coaches Gary Kubiak and John Fox, said he's fine and that ''I don't really plan on doing anything differently.''

Fantasy Football Player Notes RSS FeedPLAYER NOTES

Ahmad DixonDec 21 11:52a

The Minnesota Vikings have declared SS Ahmad Dixon, LB Anthony Barr, OT Carter Bykowski, OG Charlie Johnson, TE Kyle Rudolph, CB Shaun Prater, FB Zach Line inactive for Week 16.

Devier PoseyDec 21 11:52a

The Houston Texans have declared WR DeVier Posey, TE Garrett Graham, LB Jason Ankrah, S Josh Aubrey, LB Mike Mohamed, QB Tom Savage, OG Xavier Su'a-Filo inactive for Week 16.

A.J. KleinDec 21 11:52a

The Carolina Panthers have declared LB A.J. Klein, OG Amini Silatolu, CB Carrington Byndom, OT David Foucault, RB DeAngelo Williams, DL Kyle Love, SS Robert Lester inactive for Week 16.

Charles GodfreyDec 21 11:52a

The Atlanta Falcons have declared CB Charles Godfrey, LB James Anderson, OG Jon Asamoah, CB Ricardo Allen, QB Sean Renfree, DL Stansly Maponga, LB Tyler Starr inactive for Week 16.

Jamarca SanfordDec 21 11:52a

The New Orleans Saints have declared SS Jamarca Sanford, DL Lawrence Virgil, LB Moise Fokou, WR Seantavius Jones, CB Stanley Jean-Baptiste, OT Terron Armstead, RB Travaris Cadet inactive for Week 16.

Justin BrownDec 21 11:52a

The Pittsburgh Steelers have declared OG Chris Hubbard, DL Clifton Geathers, CB Ike Taylor, WR Justin Brown, QB Landry Jones, TE Matt Spaeth, SS Troy Polamalu inactive for Week 16.

Clifton GeathersDec 21 11:52a

The Pittsburgh Steelers have declared OG Chris Hubbard, DL Clifton Geathers, CB Ike Taylor, WR Justin Brown, QB Landry Jones, TE Matt Spaeth, SS Troy Polamalu inactive for Week 16.

Carl BradfordDec 21 11:42a

The Green Bay Packers have declared DL Bruce Gaston, LB Carl Bradford, CB Davon House, C Garth Gerhart, WR Jeff Janis, TE Justin Perillo, QB Scott Tolzien inactive for Week 16.

Chris McCainDec 21 11:42a

The Miami Dolphins have declared LB Chris McCain, OT Dallas Thomas, RB Daniel Thomas, CB Don Jones, WR Matt Hazel, OG Nate Garner, WR Rishard Matthews inactive for Week 16.

Arthur BrownDec 21 11:42a

The Baltimore Ravens have declared LB Arthur Brown, DL Casey Walker, CB Chris Greenwood, C Gino Gradkowski, WR Michael Campanaro, OG Ryan Jensen, DL Terrence Cody inactive for Week 16.

Aaron MurrayDec 21 11:42a

The Kansas City Chiefs have declared QB Aaron Murray, RB Charcandrick West, WR Donnie Avery, C Eric Kush, OT Laurent Duvernay-Tardif, CB Marcus Cooper, DL Nick X. Williams inactive for Week 16.

Gary BarnidgeDec 21 11:42a

The Cleveland Browns have declared OT Andrew McDonald, TE Gary Barnidge, RB Glenn Winston, CB Joe Haden, DB K'Waun Williams, WR Rodney Smith, OT Vinston Painter inactive for Week 16.

Chris ConteDec 21 11:42a

The Chicago Bears have declared FS Chris Conte, QB David Fales, OG Kyle Long, PK Robbie Gould, CB Terrance Mitchell, DL Trevor Scott, DL Will Sutton inactive for Week 16.

Dakota DozierDec 21 11:33a

The New York Jets have declared OL Dakota Dozier, SS Jaiquawn Jarrett, QB Matt Simms, FS Rontez Miles, DL T.J. Barnes, WR Walter Powell, OG Wesley Johnson inactive for Week 16.

Alfonzo DennardDec 21 11:33a

The New England Patriots have declared CB Alfonzo Dennard, OG Dan Connolly, RB James White, OT Jordan Devey, WR Julian Edelman, CB Kyle Arrington, RB LeGarrette Blount inactive for Week 16.

Anthony CollinsDec 21 11:32a

The Tampa Bay Buccaneers have declared OT Anthony Collins, FB Evan Rodriguez, CB Isaiah Frey, DL Lawrence Sidbury, RB Mike James, WR Robert Herron, WR Solomon Patton inactive for Week 16.

Kelvin BenjaminDec 21 11:22a

Carolina Panthers WR Kelvin Benjamin won't face Cleveland Browns CB Joe Haden (shoulder) Sunday, Dec. 21, who is out with a shoulder injury.

Joe HadenDec 21 11:22a

Cleveland Browns CB Joe Haden (shoulder) is out Sunday, Dec. 21.

Julio JonesDec 21 11:22a

Atlanta Falcons WR Julio Jones (hip) is active Sunday, Dec. 21.

Jay CutlerDec 21 10:22a

Chicago Bears QB Jay Cutler is receiving trade interest from the Tennessee Titans. If the Titans landed him, it would alter the 2015 NFL Draft board dramatically.

T Y HiltonDec 21 10:22a

Indianapolis Colts WR T.Y. Hilton (hamstring) is a long shot to play Sunday, Dec. 21. However, he's going to try to suit up.

DeMarco MurrayDec 21 10:12a

Dallas Cowboys RB DeMarco Murray (hand) will play Sunday, Dec. 21, but the team is nervous how well he'll hold up in pass protection. If the team qualifies for [ More ]

Zach ErtzDec 20 07:42p

Philadelphia Eagles TE Zach Ertz had 15 catches for 115 yards Saturday, Dec. 20. Both of which are career highs.

Philip RiversDec 20 07:22p

San Diego Chargers QB Philip Rivers (back) is active Saturday, Dec. 20, for Week 16.

Ryan MathewsDec 20 07:22p

San Diego Chargers RB Ryan Mathews (ankle) is inactive Saturday, Dec. 20, for Week 16.

Ryan MathewsDec 20 07:12p

The San Diego Chargers have declared LB Cordarro Law, DL Damion Square, CB Greg Ducre, WR Keenan Allen, P Mike Scifres, DL Ryan Carrethers, RB Ryan Mathews inactive for Week 16.

Carlos HydeDec 20 07:12p

San Francisco 49ers RB Carlos Hyde (ankle) is inactive Saturday, Dec. 20.

Ahmad BrooksDec 20 07:02p

The San Francisco 49ers have declared LB Ahmad Brooks, OG Andrew Tiller, RB Carlos Hyde, OG Joe Looney, QB Josh X. Johnson, WR Stevie Johnson, CB Tramaine Brock inactive for Week 16.

DeAndre HopkinsDec 20 06:42p

Houston Texans WR DeAndre Hopkins (ankle) will be a game-time decision Sunday, Dec. 21, after not practicing all week.

Julian EdelmanDec 20 06:02p

New England Patriots WR Julian Edelman (concussion) has been ruled out for Week 16. Edelman didn't receive final clearance from the concussion protocol to play Sunday, Dec. 21.

Dennis KellyDec 20 03:32p

The Philadelphia Eagles have declared OT Dennis Kelly, WR Jeff Maehl, S Jerome Couplin III, OG Julian Vandervelde, QB Nick Foles, DE Taylor Hart, LB Trent Cole inactive for Week 16.

DeMarco MurrayDec 20 03:22p

Dallas Cowboys RB DeMarco Murray (hand) reportedly plans on playing this week despite a broken bone in his hand.

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