How will Patriots respond to trouble?

Comcast Sportsnet New England columnist Tom E. Curran wonders out loud how the Patriots will respond to the turmoil swirling around them this week.

As if it weren't enough, they've dropped three out of their past four games and suddenly seemed to be searching in the dark for their identity with only four weeks left in the regular season. Patriots coach Bill Belichick sent four players home Wednesday for showing up late because of the weather.

What's most disconcerting to Curran is that they're players who need to be on board if the Patriots want to make any kind of push: receiver Randy Moss and linebackers Derrick Burgess, Adalius Thomas and Gary Guyton.

Curran writes:

Which way do those three [veterans] go now? Off the gangplank of the not-so-good ship Patriot, one arm aloft and a middle digit raised? Or back on board, fully committed, ready for total buy-in?

"It's no reason to go in the tank," Curran quotes Patriots running back Kevin Faulk. "It's more reason to fight. That's what I’m going to do. It's not the time to say eff it. But am I concerned? Yes. I've been concerned since Indianapolis."

Well, as you can see, Mr. Curran likes to work a little blue.

But Curran raises some excellent points about the Patriots' psyche, which is appearing increasingly fragile, and gives valid reasons why this might not end well.

I recommend you clicking on the link to read Curran's piece, which includes a sidebar with former Patriots tight end Christian Fauria's reaction to what occurred Wednesday in Gillette Stadium.

Said Fauria: "Bill used to say, 'It's New England. Make sure you leave yourself enough time to get here. And that doesn't mean you can call 10 minutes before 8 and tell me you'll be late. Regardless of what time you're supposed to be here, leave time for inclement weather.'

"In my book, it's unbelievably careless."