Wednesday, April 10, 2013
McDaniels recites from kids' playbook
By Mike Rodak
PROVIDENCE, R.I. -- Like a veteran quarterback calm under pressure, New England Patriots offensive coordinator Josh McDaniels seemed right at home on Wednesday morning when he read to more than 200 students at Lillian Feinstein Elementary School in Providence.
With good reason, too: McDaniels has four children of his own. He might actually know the children's book "Where the Wild Things Are" better than he does the Patriots playbook.
Speaking to reporters afterward, McDaniels declined to comment on any offseason developments with the Patriots' offense, which have included the departure of top wide receivers Wes Welker and Brandon Lloyd. However, he did offer an overview of what he and the coaching staff look to accomplish this time of year.
"We spend a lot of time evaluating our system, the upcoming draft," McDaniels said. "It's really a part of the year where it's full of reflection and looking at some things to maybe make our organization better."
As McDaniels spoke in Providence, his words echoed true back in Foxborough, with ESPN NFL Insider Adam Schefter reporting Wednesday morning that Pittsburgh Steelers wide receiver Emmanuel Sanders, a restricted free agent, had signed a one-year offer sheet with New England.
With their offseason program set to begin next Monday, the Patriots are participating in literacy education efforts this week in Rhode Island. Typically the visits are made by players, so McDaniels' visit on Wednesday was out of the ordinary.
"For us coaches, we don't get as many opportunities during the season to get out and be a part of the community and do things like this to really help the children and promote a wonderful message," McDaniels said.
After reading two books to the students, McDaniels answered several questions from the young audience, at one point recalling being interviewed by Bill Belichick when McDaniels was hired in 2001.
"I know how impressionable they all are right now. My kids are every day. They ask questions that my wife and I look at each other and go 'Where did that come from?'" McDaniels said. "They're all sponges right now and any time they ask a question they're looking for a specific answer and it really means something to them."