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    Thursday, September 25, 2008

    Mr. Patriot: Troy Brown Retires

    Fifteen years ago, a young kid out of Marshall University was drafted by the, then struggling New England Patriots. When he was selected in the 8th round of the 1993 draft, nobody would have ever imagined that he would go on to set a Patriots record for receptions or that he would help lead his team to three Super Bowl rings.

    Click here to order your Troy Brown jersey now!

    When Troy Brown was drafted, the New England Patriots were a completely different team. There was no Tom Brady. There was no Bill Belichick. There was no Tedy Bruschi. There was no Mike Vrabel. There were no Super Bowl rings. There were no Super Bowl banners. Troy Brown’s career spanned 15 years and saw the growth of a dynasty that may prove to be one of the greatest in the history of professional sports.

    So what was happening in 1993 when Troy Brown was selected to join the New England Patriots?

    - Bill Clinton was sworn in as President of the United States
    - The Buffalo Bills had just lost their 3rd Super Bowl in a row
    - Janet Reno was the Attorney General
    - Unforgiven won the Best Picture Oscar
    - The Branch Davidian compound in Waco, Texas was stormed and 76 people died
    - Monica Seles is stabbed in the back
    - “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” is instituted as policy in the US Military
    - Eric Clapton Unplugged wins Album of the Year Grammy
    - And a few other things happened too…

    All of these things and more happened in 1993, but the most important thing to happen that year in the world of the New England Patriots was the signing of Troy Brown. Now, some may argue that the most important thing the Patriots did that year was draft Drew Bledsoe. Really? Drew Bledsoe? Remind me how many rings he has? Yes at the time, in 1993 it seemed like the right thing to do, but Bledsoe was really just setting the stage for one of the greatest back-up quarterback stories in the history of the NFL, Tom F Brady.

    But deep down in the annals of the 1993 NFL draft, after they took Scott Sisson, Kevin Johnson, Chris Slade, Todd Rucci, Vincent Brisby, Corwin Brown, Richard Griffith and Lawrence Hatch, the New England Patriots made their best pick of that year, Wide Receiver Troy Brown.

    He was like a lot of the guys that have become legendary in New England sports. He wasn’t the biggest guy, he wasn’t the fastest guy, he wasn’t the strongest guy, but he had the things that are tantamount to greatness. He worked harder then anyone else. He had the heart of a champion. Most importantly of all, he put his team first as evidenced by sacrificing his receiving stats to play as a D-back in 2004.

    Troy Brown was a player like no other. He was a leader on and off the field and he did it all the time while keeping his mouth shut. You never heard about Troy Brown running his mouth on the sideline or getting into fights with his teammates. He very rarely argued a call with the officials or showboated after a great play. He was all business, the way the New England Patriots have been since he was signed to the roster.

    He put up staggering numbers. A team record, 557 receptions, good for 6,366 yards and 31 receiving touchdowns, but the numbers don’t even tell the story. He did the intangible things that he needed to do to lead his team to three Super Bowl victories and all while being Tom Brady’s favorite receiver.

    Troy, you will be missed. You are a fan favorite and we are thankful that you have decided to retire a Patriot. There are some people in the world of professional athletics (I’m looking at you Johnny Damon) that chose money over loyalty, you sir are NOT one of those people. You are a class act in every since of the word and we are proud to always be able to call you a true Patriot.

    Thanks for the memories.

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    Anonymous New England Sports Blog said...

    How comfortable are you with Skip from Pleasantville as your set up man?
    I honestly believe last night's celebration of a playoff berth was the first time Justin Masterson ever tried alcohol. He was interviewed not more than ten minutes after the last out was recorded and he reminded me of countless freshman at UMASS Amherst on their first Thursday night on campus. There's no way he could have had more than one beer yet he was babbling and slurring his speech like Joe Namath. I can't believe he didn't say to Heidi Watney, "Screw the playoffs, I just want to kiss you!"
    It's great that the Red Sox are back in the playoffs, but come one, acting like you just won the World Series after clinching the WILD CARD? The Sox have a one hundred and sixty million dollar payroll! It reminded me of the Chris Rock skit when the father proudly proclaims, "I take care of my kids," to which Rock responds, "You supposed to take care of your kids you low expectation having motherf@*%er!" Jason Varitek, save the Yazstremski-esque victory lap for when you win the World Series. Or for when you break .220, whichever comes first.
    APB! What the hell happened to Kyle Snyder? He had a 3.81 ERA last year and filled the "long man" relief role admirably. There was even talk of him taking a turn in the Sox rotation this year in spring training. I guess he didn't stack up well to Clay Bucholz, Bartolo Colon, David Aardsma, Chris Smith or Mike Timlin.
    Ten or eleven wins for the Patriots this year? Matt Cassel a valuable off season trade chip? The Patriots an AFC contender? I'm not so sure about that. Defenses are clearly going to continue to double Randy Moss and provide safety help and make Cassel beat them with the "dink and dunk" passing attack. Unfortunately, Matt can't throw a ball that doesn't rotate like a bent hub cap, consistently throws behind receivers and has thus far narrowly avoided throwing at least five interceptions. Not that he's the only issue on the Pats right now, but it's quite possible that the defense isn't as bad it looked vs the Fish, but it's very likely that Matt Cassel will not be in the NFL next year.
    Glen "Doc" Rivers was at the White House.
    It's great to hear Mike Felger on WEEI! While filling in for curmudgeons Dennis and Callahan he stole the show with his milf, pilf and dilf talk. Felger and John Meterparel should take over the morning show immediately.
    Dale "Dull" Arnold should resign immediately from his midday siesta on WEEI. Instead of icing opposing kickers, the Patriots should pump clips of Arnold's sniveling drivel into Gillete to make opposing kickers fall asleep before a game tying field goal. "Dullgate!"
    In NESB fantasy football, me and team Hume are undefeated. I spend five minutes a day trying to improve my team, Matt hasn't looked at his team once. Barrows dropped Jay Cutler for Matt Cassel. Yes, Barrows dropped Jay Cutler for Matt Cassel. He really did.
    Why don't the Sox just start Tim Wakefield as their fourth playoff starter and keep Paul Pyrd ready to go if Wakefield struggles? Then they can put Varitek in for Cash and we miss having to watch The Captain look like Mr. Miyagi trying to catch flies with chop sticks if Wakefield comes in for relief. Seems like a smart move to me...
    ...of course Francona thinks its smart not to pinch run for Mark Kotsay with Ellsbury in the bottom of the ninth and down a run until there are TWO outs and Big Papi at the plate. Strangest move I have ever seen.
    Why are lovers of pocorn and Sopranos cast members the only people who leave comments?

    WPD, Thank you for alerting the NESB Community to your Troy Brown Article, it's nice to see the constant sharing of content and information between our two Sites.

    Let me know if any of you Wicked Pissa Members have answers to the questions posed over at New England Sports Blog.

    September 26, 2008 at 6:33 AM  

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