First Call: Are Bill Belichick, Tom Brady already tired of Antonio Brown attention?; New home run record |
Breakfast With Benz

First Call: Are Bill Belichick, Tom Brady already tired of Antonio Brown attention?; New home run record

Tim Benz
New England Patriots head coach Bill Belichick at the podium before taking questions from reporters about wide receiver Antonio Brown during a media availability before football practice, Wednesday, Sept. 11, 2019, in Foxborough, Mass.

In “First Call” this Thursday, we see how New England is reacting to the news about the lawsuit against Antonio Brown. The helmet saga surrounding Brown may be resurfacing, too. An MLB home run record. And a significant horse-racing scandal.

Fed up already?

When we found out Antonio Brown was going to New England, did you start wondering how many press conferences would go by before Bill Belichick and Tom Brady became exasperated answering questions about him?

I did.

Turns out the answer was — one.

Neither the Patriots quarterback nor coach wanted anything to do with the media trying to get information about Brown or the potential suspension he may face as a result of the rape allegations made against him.

Yeah. That’s pretty much what I was expecting. I figured it would happen after a week or two. And I hoped it would be over something much more mundane, like a wrong route, missed meeting or social-media fiasco.

This is going to be a consistent look for Brady and Belichick so long as Brown is on their roster.

Didn’t we just do this?

Speaking of Brown — and we always are — he has a new helmet.


According to ProFootballTalk, in his first practice in New England, Brown has already changed brands.

“He already has moved on from the Xenith Shadow helmet that he selected amid great fanfare on September 4,” posted Mike Florio. “At his first practice with the Patriots, Brown is clearly wearing a different helmet.

“It appears to be one of the various Schutt Air XP models, multiple of which have passed the NFL’s testing protocol. Regardless, it’s not the Xenith. Which means that Xenith may want to stop payment on any endorsement check that was given to Brown.”

I guess business will no longer be boomin’ with Xenith.

We knew this was coming

But did we know it was coming with about two and a half weeks remaining in the season?

So many home runs have been hit in Major League Baseball this year, we already have a new record for long balls.

Via, Baltimore Oriole’s Johnathan Villar’s seventh-inning home run Wednesday night was the 6,106th homer this season. The previous record of 6,105 was set in 2017.

These are the only two seasons in history with at least 6,000 home runs hit.

The Orioles went on to win 7-3.

Nothin’ but love

One guy who contributed heavily to that home run total was Milwaukee Brewers’ Christian Yelich.

He has 44 homers in 2019. Only the New York Mets’ Pete Alonso (47) and the Los Angeles Angels’ Mike Trout (45) have more.

But the reigning National League MVP likely won’t be hitting any more this year because he appears to be on the shelf for the remainder of the season with a knee injury.

The star outfield fractured his kneecap on a foul ball.

Another MVP in the market — Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers — talked about how unhappy he was to see Yelich hurt in the midst of yet another fine season.

Rodgers can sympathize. He had seasons cut short due to injury in both 2013 and 2017.

Even the horses?

It seems like you are always one click away from another sports scandal.

Even if you are clicking on horse racing.

The 2018 Kentucky Derby winner, Justify, failed a drug test on April 7, 2018 according to The New York Times.

However, 19 days went by before trainer Bob Baffert was informed. He requested a second sample. And the horse tested positive again. But by the point the results were known, Justify had already won the Derby.

More via, “The racing board then diverted from its normal course of action, according to the Times, which cited emails and internal memorandums it obtained. Rather than filing a complaint and holding a hearing, nothing happened until Aug. 23, four months after the failed test and two months after Justify had completed his Triple Crown run by winning the Belmont Stakes.

“The board’s executive director, Rick Baedeker, took the unprecedented path of presenting the case directly to the board’s commissioners, who voted unanimously to drop the case, according to the Times.”

Sounds like someone was eating some doped-up sugar cubes or something.

I had to applaud that one. Couldn’t resist.

Tim Benz is a Tribune-Review staff writer. You can contact Tim at [email protected] or via Twitter. All tweets could be reposted. All emails are subject to publication unless specified otherwise.

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