logoby Scott Benson

No game today, but there are always the Sunday Links. And the papers pack a punch today, with strong commentary, unique perspectives, and a filling portion of the standard daily fare.

To her credit, Shalise Manza Young of the Providence Journal reflects on the rush to judgment that followed the shocking murder of Redskins safety Sean Taylor earlier this week. I think we all know what Shalise is talking about here. The earliest reports of the break-in and shooting drew a straight line from the apparent break-in and shooting to Taylor’s checkered on-and-off field past. The pundits were only too happy to take it from there, best exemplified by a this sensitive think-piece from the barely-upright ‘JT the Brick’ for MSNBC. 

A few days later, we find that Taylor was killed not by vengeful gangsters but by a bumbling gaggle of low-life hangers-on. Not by get-back assassins, but by bottom feeding common criminals, envious of another’s fame and wealth and so typically, pathetically intent on having it for their undeserving selves in the easiest and quickest manner possible. Taylor was, seemingly, less a victim of a thug life than he was of an exceedingly petulant group of punks.

The wild speculation offered earlier in the week by the media has predictably been replaced by silence. Young deserves credit, at the very least, for raising a voice.

Elsewhere, I know that the Patriot Ledger isn’t technically a Sunday paper, but I’d hate for you to miss Eric McHugh’s excellent piece on Bill Belichick’s return to Baltimore. Eric saw an innovative angle here and once again, we see how Belichick opens up when he’s engaged, not interrogated, by a questioner. Great stuff.

Quirky, but fun, stuff leads off the Herald’s coverage this morning. John Tomase actually has ‘performance coach’ Tony Robbins encouraging Belichick to embrace his inner hoodie. At first, I laughed, but by the end of the piece, Robbins has me, which I guess, is how you become an internationally famous ‘performance coach’.

Tomase also has his weekly Quick Hits, where he raises an interesting point on the plight of Taylor’s Redskins, who will take on Buffalo today, their teammate’s funeral tomorrow, and the Chicago Bears on Thursday night. Steve Buckley closes out with a look at Adalius Thomas’s lasting relationship with a Maryland elementary school.

In the Globe, Mike Reiss looks back on Tom Brady’s talk show on NBC last week. I admit, I’ve never heard a quarterback come though on a game telecast as audibly as Brady did last Sunday night. Now, I assume that the people on the field, including his opponents, hear that every week. I guess the real issue is that last week, all 31 teams heard them clearly and distinctly at once.

Mike also has his weekly league notes, where he visits with Ravens defensive coorinator Rex Ryan, who inherited his aggressive approach from his dad Buddy. Reiss also looks back on the Patriots’ pursuit on Ravens receiver Derrick Mason, and talks with Cards great Roy Green, who’s been taking a pounding from the record-breaking Pats this year.

Christopher Gasper has the daily Pats notebook, where he looks at the Ravens’ giveaway/takeaway ratio, which ranks last in the league.

In the MetroWest Daily News, Douglas Flynn looks at the apparently ‘patient’ Laurence Maroney, biding his time until it’s ‘his time’. I don’t know. This guy always sounds like he’d be tearing up the league if only he wasn’t always playing second fiddle. We certainly want the Patriots to be confident, but there’s just something about Maroney that makes me wonder if he assumes a hell of a lot sometimes.

David Heuschkel of the Courant expects Adalius Thomas to get a warm welcome home tomorrow night.

Thanks for popping in. Enjoy your Sunday.