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The Mass Media

The Mass Media

Shaq Mason Extension a Bright Spot to an Iffy Beginning to the Season

Shaq mason

Okay, so let’s get to the good stuff first 

Shaq Mason and the Patriots have agreed to a 5-year deal with incentives worth $50 million and with $23.5 million guaranteed, which will keep the right guard on the team through the 2024 season. Mason was arguably the Patriots’ most reliable offensive lineman in 2017, starting in all 19 games between the regular season and postseason.  

Bill Belichick praised Mason during a press conference on Monday saying, “Shaq’s done a good job for us from the time he got here. He came from an offense that was quite different from ours. He adapted quickly and did a real good job learning new techniques. He’s an athletic player … he’s gotten better each year and done a good job for us.” In the past, Belichick has shown time and again that if he trusts a player then he will find a way to keep that player, and that is exactly what he did here by making Mason the seventh highest paid guard in the NFL.

So, what can possibly be wrong with the Patriots? Aren’t they perfect?

The answer to those questions would be no. Yes, the Patriots have arguably the greatest coach of all time, and the greatest quarterback of all time, but the beginning of the 2018 season has been far from great.  It seems that ever since the Super Bowl loss, there hasn’t been very much good news surrounding the Patriots.

Let’s start with Tom Brady. The offseason for Brady seemed very lackadaisical compared to previous seasons, which led some people to believe that his days playing football were coming to an end sooner rather than later.  Along with that, there have been rumblings that Belichick has been frustrated with Brady and his personal trainer, Alex Guerrero, for undermining the team’s training staff at times.  Brady has already cut short multiple press conferences this season when asked about problems linked to Guerrero.

This issue has also filtered through to some other important players like Julian Edelman and Rob Gronkowski who also use Alex Guerrero’s services as a trainer, and when Edelman was suspended for 4 games for PEDs, many turned their heads to Guerrero to see whether he was linked in any way, although Guerrero denied all speculation that he was a part of it. 

The injury bug

So far this preseason, injuries have not been kind to the Patriots, especially for players like Isaiah Wynn, who will miss the entire season due to a torn Achilles; Jordan Matthews, who was cut due to a hamstring injury; Sony Michel, who has yet to see any game action yet due to a bad knee, and Malcolm Mitchell, whose career is in jeopardy due to a recurring knee injury. Patriots running back Rex Burkhead is also planning on playing through a partial tear in his knee, so it is expected that the Patriots are going to be cautious when using him.


It’s fair to say that the beginning to the 2018 season has gone far from perfect for the Pats between injuries and personal issues.  However, it would be extreme to say that the Patriots are going to fall apart because of these problems, and don’t forget that the Patriots are still in the AFC East with a bunch of bum teams. So, winning the division should still be a cakewalk for the Pats.  If the Patriots can overcome these problems they are faced with right now before the playoffs, then you should still expect this team to compete for another Super Bowl.

About the Contributor
Jonathan Hopkins, Sports Editor