FOXBOROUGH — The Foxborough Former Browns Club has a new member. On Monday, defensive lineman John Hughes became the 14th player who played for Cleveland in 2013 to be signed by the Patriots, joining the likes of Jabaal Sheard, Dion Lewis, and Barkevious Mingo.
Hughes, who was born and raised in Ohio, said Thursday he is glad to have the company.
“I went to school in Cincinnati, drafted to the Browns,” said Hughes, “so this is actually my first time living out of Ohio, so just, like you said earlier, knowing somebody and getting the little things like places to live, car, and different things like that.”
Hughes tumbled through the Browns’ coaching carousel, switching base defenses on a nearly annual basis, and he was cut by the team last week after he missed time during training camp and was leapfrogged by rookie Carl Nassib.
The Browns’ roster is weaker than the Patriots’, so Bill Belichick must be hoping that he can coach out some of the talent that led Cleveland to draft Hughes in the third round in 2012, or find better use for the 320-pounder than the Browns did.
“John’s an experienced player,” Belichick said. “He has played a little bit inside and outside. We’ll see how it goes with him. Again, I think he’s a big guy with some skill, can run a little bit, and has a good level of playing experience. So we’ll see how it turns out.”
Sheard, in particular, has helped Hughes as he has started to learn the playbook.
“Kind of just picking it up piece by piece, it’s kind of hard to learn the whole playbook overnight, just starting from the beginning,” Hughes said.
Still, Hughes could be a help in stopping LeSean McCoy and the Bills’ ground game on Sunday. Hughes is not an accomplished pass rusher but he is stout against the run. The Browns held joint practices with the Bills last year, too, so Hughes is familiar with Buffalo’s offense.
“Fast guys, got to be able to contain them,” he said.
Man of honor
LeGarrette Blount leads the NFL with 298 rushing yards and is tied for the lead with four rushing touchdowns, having crossed the goal line at least once in each game this season.
Those performances made him the AFC Offensive Player of the Month for September, the league announced on Thursday.
Blount said whether or not he keeps it up will depend on the Patriots’ future opponents and game plans.
“I don’t know, we’ll see,” Blount said. “If the games call for us to run the football we’re going to do it, if they call for us to pass it we’re going to do it, so the game has been played differently, you’ve just got to lace ’em up and do whatever the coaches tell you to do.”
That’s the kind of answer Belichick loves to hear. Blount has made it clear this season that he has a great rapport with his coach.
“I love Bill to death, he’s always had my back from the first time I met him until, I feel like he’ll probably have it forever,” Blount said. “We just have a really good relationship. I like everything that he does, I respect him a lot . . . and he’s for sure one of the best coaches. I think he’s going to go down in history as the best coach to ever coach this game.”
Belichick calls Blount by his nickname, “LG.” Blount said that most of the players do as well, and Belichick picked it up from hearing it around the locker room and at practice.
“Can’t complain if he calls you that, because what LG stands for is life’s good, right?” said Blount.
The Patriots held a walkthrough practice Thursday afternoon and for the third straight day had 100 percent attendance.
The media portion of the session was abbreviated, so it was unknown if injured quarterbacks Jimmy Garoppolo and Jacoby Brissett intensified their throwing.
Both were limited participants, according to the injury report, and both threw during Wednesday’s full-pads practice.
Garoppolo suffered a sprained AC joint in his right, throwing shoulder in Week 2 against Miami, and Brissett hurt his right thumb in Week 3 against Houston.
Brissett had his thumb and wrist taped Tuesday and Wednesday, but he arrived Thursday with his hands in his sweat shirt pocket, so it was unknown if he continued that practice.
Tight end Rob Gronkowski and linebacker Dont’a Hightower were also limited, along with tackle Marcus Cannon, guard Jonathan Cooper, linebacker Jonathan Freeny, and cornerback Eric Rowe.
There were no changes to the injury report from Wednesday to Thursday.