Originally posted on NESN.com  |  Last updated 9/13/13
It didn’t long for Tommy Kelly to make his presence felt in New England. The 6-foot-6, 310-pound defensive tackle recorded his first sack with the Patriots on Thursday night. It took Kelly until Week 15 last season to finally get after the quarterback and bringing him down behind the line of scrimmage. That’s what this season is all about for the 32-year-old: getting a fresh start and proving his detractors wrong. “It’s difficult,” Kelly said about learning the Patriots’ defensive scheme. “But I mean, me personally man, I just wanted to come out and make sure, like, there’s been a lot of things said about me in the past. I just wanted to just try to just ‘OK I got a new start, I got a fresh start.’ I just want to show these folks that what you been hearing about me, don’t believe everything you hear.” Kelly had been knocked in Oakland after he received a five-year, $50.5 million contract in 2008. He was dogged for a lack of effort on every snap and for drawing too many penalties. “I’ve come from a team that struggled,” Kelly said. “People try to say, ‘Well, how good is he?’ Teams, they weren’t good. It go like that. I just really want to prove the people and show the people I can play. I understand I’ve been in Oakland for a long time. Oakland got some people. We probably [had] no quarterback. You know what I’m saying? That’s what you need on this level.  A good quarterback. I just want to show people people, personally. I just want to show people I can play. So, that’s what I’m trying to do.” Kelly says he has been putting in some extra work on his playbook at night in order to prove those doubters wrong. He’s part of a much-improved pass rush in New England that is doing a lot of its damage inside at defensive tackle. The extra work appears to be paying off. “I just been try to just get in my book, learn the defense as much as I can,” Kelly said. “It’s a hard defense to learn. If you want to play, you got to learn. Bill don’t like no dumb players. He wants nothing but tough, smart guys. I had to really, really, really get in the playbook. We check and we go from one defense to another. So, you gotta be on this [expletive]. I had to — this is as hard of a defense as I’ve ever had to learn. I did a pretty good job. I just find myself having to look at my playbook, I mean my D book, at least five, 10 minutes every night just to get stuff. Just stay and check stuff.” The Patriots had trouble generating pressure at Kelly’s position last season with Brandon Deaderick and Kyle Love. They combined for just 1 1/2 sacks all season. At this rate, Kelly will far surpass their production from last year and he’ll earn the respect from around the league he deserves. Have a question for Doug Kyed? Send it to him via Twitter at @DougKyedNESN or send it here. Filed under: Doug Kyed, New England Patriots, Top Stories
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45

WATCH: Jim Harbaugh in cleats throws out first pitch at Cubs game

Why Rickie Fowler will win the PGA Championship

Warren Sapp bitten on arm by shark

Fitzpatrick, Jets agree to one-year deal

Baker considering removing Papelbon from closer role?


Greg Hardy struggling to find work, reportedly even in CFL

Jets players told not to discuss Ryan Fitzpatrick situation

Brock Lesnar won't be punished by WWE for UFC drug test

Report: Cowboys to be fined up to $250K for suspended players

Data shows NFL-backed youth program that claimed reduced concussions is bogus

Report: Odom’s family working hard to get him to go to rehab

Justin Timberlake advocates for Memphis to join Big 12

Poll: Las Vegas residents don’t support public funds for NFL stadium

Conor McGregor talks trash to Nate Diaz on ‘Conan’

We asked Team USA: What other Olympic sport would you play?

Real Madrid can’t train at Norwegian school because of the kids

Newspaper uses Michael Jordan ‘crying face’ as image

Equipment manager Blake Griffin punched no longer works for Clippers

Report: Nicks signing one-year deal with Saints

Reds 'picking up the pace' on Jay Bruce trade talks

Robbie Keane rescued on highway after running out of gas

Why Gary Bettman's CTE denial is cause for concern for NHL

WATCH: Tigers play high stakes game of Rock, Paper, Scissors

All Sports News
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

By clicking "Sign Me Up", you have read and agreed to the Fox Sports Digital Privacy Policy and Terms of Use. You can opt out at any time. For more information, please see our Privacy Policy.
Get it now!
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45

We asked Team USA: What other Olympic sport would you play?

Why Gary Bettman's CTE denial is cause for concern for NHL

WATCH: Inside the Nike SNKRS BOX in SF for Golden Air Celebration

WATCH: Five other uniforms Chris Sale should cut up

QUIZ: Name every Olympic event in which the USA has never won a gold medal

Five U.S. Olympians favored to win multiple gold medals

WATCH: What teams should join the Big 12?

One Gotta Go: Do NBA players really love NBA2K?

One Gotta Go: NBA players hate Facebook too

One Gotta Go: NBA players settle the fast food beef

Today's Best Stuff
For Publishers
Company Info
Follow Yardbarker