Probably for the best and I can’t say anything bad about Spikes. I enjoyed the heck out of watching him play. He brought such a ferocity to the middle of the defense and that will not easily be replaced.

He was just what the Pats needed in 2010 after getting run all over by the Ravens in the 2009 playoff game. He made an instant impact as a rookie.

His injury issues were fairly consistent unfortunately, that’s part of the deal when you play like he does. Was he a target in the passing game? Sure. But we also can’t forget his interception in the 2011 AFC Championship game and that he had a fair number of passes defenses in 2012.

Is he an elite three-down linebacker? No, but what he does well he does better than almost anyone else in the NFL.

WIsh Spikes the best and thank him for all the huge hits and #PowWwwWs. Hopefully he doesn’t end up with Pepper in Buffalo. I know me, RIdley and Vereen don’t feel like seeing him twice a year blowing up our running game.

Good stuff from Oliver Thomas. I think we’ll see the Pats mostly in nickel this weekend where they can minimize the impact of losing Spikes. Still, if we thought the run defense was bad before 55 went down, I’m scared to imagine what it might look like now. 

And the injuries just keep on coming…

Per the tweet below, the Patriots just announced that Spikes is done for the year with a knee injury. Somewhere someone can tally up all the injuries, I’m done with doing that for this year at least.

Looks like our boy Dane Fletcher suddenly becomes a key figure to any Super Bowl run. I guess against the Colts and Broncos (more passing teams than running) it works out a bit in the Pats favor. But Spikes gutted it out as long as he could I guess. Another tough break in a year full of them. His presence will be missed, and the excuse machine is primed and ready to start spitting them out if/when the Pats bow out.

This year, he’s taken things a step further. Spikes will play in all 16 games despite a knee ligament injury that has limited him in practice for about two months (a league source said Spikes will require surgery when the season ends). Asked about the knee and how much pain he’s been dealing with, Spikes grimaces a bit, but then gives an answer that would probably make his linebacking idol, hard-nosed Hall of Famer Dick Butkus, smile. “It’s pretty banged up, but this deep in the season, everybody’s banged up,” Spikes said. “I’ve been able to deal with the pain and stuff like that. “And when I’m out there, my adrenaline is pumping and the thrill of it, but it’s part of the game. That’s what makes this game so good — you’ve got to be able to play through pain.

Friday column is up. Spikes is a keeper…

Good stuff from Oliver Thomas illustrating the trappings of the zone run game.

Everybody is dealing with something out there,” Spikes said this week. “It’s just part of being mentally tough. It’s the bigger picture. It’s not about me. This game has never been about me. I just go out there and lay it all out there for my teammates.
On the Rob Ninkovich sack of Ben Roethlisberger that ended the Steelers’ first drive, on a third-and-2 play, it was a good combination of rush and coverage. We’d give an assist to linebacker Brandon Spikes, who faked a blitz, then backed out to help in coverage on running back Felix Jones over the middle. That was Roethlisberger’s first read, but when he spotted Spikes, he held on to the ball longer than he wanted to and by that point the rush arrived. It might not always look pretty, but just as he did against the Bengals on Oct. 6 with an interception, Spikes showed he can compete at times in pass coverage.