Here’s our Black Friday B/R column, digging deep on Dane Fletcher, one of my longtime faves…

Contributions from linebackers Dane Fletcher and Jamie Collins, who haven’t been a big part of defensive plans prior to this point, stood out. Fletcher had played 68 total defensive snaps through the first nine games of the season and nearly matched the total on Sunday night, when he had a key forced fumble. Fletcher was thrust into action when linebacker Dont’a Hightower came out of the game late in the second quarter and didn’t play another snap the rest of the way. As for Collins, he was “active”, according to Bill Belichick. That was reflected in his snaps-to-tackle ratio, which was impressive (22 snaps, 10 tackles).
Nice to see Fletcher getting a shot on defense.

Nice to see Fletcher getting a shot on defense.

Linebacker Dane Fletcher saw his most extended defensive playing time as the lone pure linebacker in the 4-1-6 dime. Seemed like a good coaching wrinkle to get the speedier Fletcher on the field in that package in place of the bigger Dont’a Hightower, who is more apt to struggle playing in space. It also splits up the mental workload and gives another quality player an ownership stake with a slice of the defense.

Great read from Mary Paoletti on Dane Fletcher. We’ll see how things go tomorrow, but I’m kinda wondering if it’s time to bang the “let’s see what Fletcher can do” drum with the base defense. I’ve always liked what I’ve seen out of him..

New England Patriots linebacker Jerod Mayo could miss the rest of the season after having surgery Tuesday to repair a torn pectoral muscle, Yahoo Sports has learned. The injury, confirmed by two sources, is a blow to the Patriots, who pulled out a last-second victory over New Orleans on Sunday but may have lost four key players for significant time.

This season just keeps getting better by the week… Where my Dane Fletcher fans at?

Patriots LB Jerod Mayo could miss season with pectoral injury - Yahoo Sports

One of my main focuses this year was to work on my pass coverage and really nail that down," Fletcher said. "I feel like I’ve been doing well and (there’s) always room to improve.

The Day - Fletcher looking strong after surgery for Patriots | News from southeastern Connecticut

Jamie Collins has gotten a lot of attention as a potential solution to the pass coverage problems in the middle of the field, but Fletcher could be an even bigger piece of the puzzle early this season.

Fletch looking big…

Fletch looking big…

It’s just been a grind, because I’m not the kind of guy who sits back and takes time off,” Fletcher said. “I’ve put in all the positive energy I could. I think the proof will be in the pudding when next year arises and people and all the fans will see how much time I’ve spent in the offseason preparing for this year. I’m putting everything I have in to it, which I feel I owe to myself, my family and Patriots fans.