The New England Patriots have taken a break during the off-season to get their affairs in order. Players have been rehabbing, others have taken trips abroad, and others have worked hard to give back to their community. Here are some quick hits from the week including news on Jarvis Green, Sammy Morris, Pacman Jones and more.
Running back Sammy Morris' rehab is on track for a return to action after a rare chest injury that cost him all but six games in his first season in New England. Morris was off to a fast start with the Patriots with 384 yards and three touchdowns in five-plus games, including back-to-back 100-yard efforts in the weeks leading up to the injury he suffered during Week 6 action in Dallas. Despite some uncertainty as the to the timeline for the injury, Morris began lifting weights again about three weeks ago and is excited to be back with his teammates in the offseason program.
"I'm really pleased with my progress," Morris told the Boston Globe. "The doctors say everything looks good and that it was a freak injury, but that guys bounce back from it.
"More importantly, the way I feel, physically, just being able to do stuff and that I can push myself - at the same time not overdoing it - I feel optimistic about being able to contribute this year."
New England officially re-signed a pair of exclusive rights free agents in offensive tackle Wesley Britt and linebacker Pierre Woods on March 25.
Britt has played in 14 games with two career starts in two seasons, all with the Patriots. The former fifth-round pick of the Chargers also spent the 2005 season on the New England practice squad.
Woods joined the Patriots as an undrafted free agent out of Michigan in 2006. In two seasons he has played in 24 regular-season games, the bulk of the action on special teams. He has 32 career special teams tackles, including a team-high 21 last season. He also has seven special teams tackles in his six career playoff games.
--Defensive end Jarvis Green appeared on a taped segment of "Montel" with Montel Williams this week as part of the work he's done through his charity to help victims of Hurricane Katrina. Green, an LSU alum and Louisiana native, presented a $25,000 check to Michelle Johnson, a 27-year-old single mother of four who was rendered homeless by the horrific storm.
"It was very emotional on the show. It was like a dream come true for me to bring publicity to a serious matter, having my foundation help," Green told the Boston Herald. "I was shedding tears. Montel was shedding tears. Everybody (was crying), even the people in the crowd. It was an amazing experience. When (I gave her that check), her heart just dropped. The expression on her face, it's something that made me smile. It's something I won't ever forget."
Green and his foundation have set a goal of helping 5-8 single mothers each year who have been affected by Hurricane Katrina.
--Despite plenty of speculation to the contrary, the Patriots apparently don't have interest in pursuing suspended and troubled cornerback Pacman Jones. Reports out of Tennessee and then comments made by Jones' agent listed New England among possible destinations if the former No. 5 overall pick were to be traded by the Titans and reinstated by the NFL. The Boston Globe cited a league source this week saying the Patriots "will not pursue Jones."
They Said It: "All that stuff becomes a wash. So it's like the success we had doesn't mean anything. It very sad to say that, but that's just the way it is. We became second-place losers." - Defensive end Jarvis Green on the 18-0 Patriots losing to the Giants in the Super Bowl.there."
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