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Wednesday, October 03, 2007

Vrabel catches ninth touchdown pass



Watson wants to try Vrabel's gig


October 2, 2007

By JIM DONALDSON

CINCINNATI -- Turnabout, Patriots tight end Ben Watson believes, is fair play.

Since linebacker Mike Vrabel gets to come in near the goal line and catch touchdown passes, Watson wants a chance to rush the passer.

``I want to come in on third-and-long,'' he said, smiling broadly. "I want to come in when it's third-and-20, when everybody's knows the quarterback is going to pass, and get a sack.''

Watson, still smiling, added that the tight ends get ``a little jealous'' when Vrabel gets the ball thrown to him in the end zone.

''Whenever we see Mike coming in,'' said Watson, "we roll our eyes and say: 'Oh, man!' ''

The tight ends try not to let Vrabel slip into their meetings during the week.
"He tries to sneak in," Watson said.

But they can't keep him out of the huddle when coach Bill Belichick sends him in.

And, it appears, opposing defenses can't keep the versatile Vrabel from catching the ball in the end zone.

He has caught nine passes since coming to the Patriots from Pittsburgh as an unrestricted free agent in 2001, and all of them have been for touchdowns.

Two of them were in Super Bowls -- one against Carolina, one against the Eagles -- and his latest TD catch came last night in Cincinnati, when he hauled in a 1-yard toss from Tom Brady in the final minute of the first quarter that put the Patriots on top, 10-0.

''Mike's a great threat down there," Brady said. "He's very elusive and has good hands."

"His eyes light up," Belichick said, "when he sees the ball coming."

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