Lane Johnson expects Patriots fans to ‘raise hell’ Thursday over comments
Lane Johnson not only expects New England Patriots fans to give him a rude welcome on Thursday when the Philadelphia Eagles pay a visit to Gillette Stadium for a preseason match-up; he welcomes it.
“Oh yeah. I hope so. I hope they raise hell,” Johnson said Tuesday following the final practice of Eagles training camp, via ESPN. “They can cuss me, they can say whatever they want. At the end of the day, I’m not blocking them, I’m blocking guys on the edge, so it really doesn’t matter what they say.
“I know that I’m not going to be well-liked, this team is not going to be well-liked going there, so it’s going to basically bring out our best.”
Johnson tore into the Patriots organization shortly after the Eagles’ 41-33 victory in Super Bowl LII. Among the inflammatory comments, Johnson said the “Patriot Way is a fear-based organization” and added how the team’s players “act like [expletive] robots.”
The outspoken Eagles right tackle later took on the Patriots in another interview but qualified his remarks by stating he respected Tom Brady and Bill Belichick.
Speaking of the Patriots head coach, Belichick not surprisingly avoided directly addressing Johnson’s anti-Patriots rhetoric.
“We’re focused on what we’re doing. We need to have a good practice today and try to improve our team today,” Belichick said. “That’s what we’re going to do.”
Despite what should be an extremley hostile crowd in Foxborough, Mass., on Thursday night, Johnson and the Eagles will at least be able to enjoy a billboard just down the road from the stadium funded by an Eagles fan that celebrates the team’s Super Bowl win. That’s something.