Patriots quarterback Tom Brady made his weekly appearance on Dennis & Callahan on Tuesday morning, as the Pats continue preparations for Sunday’s regular-season opener against the Bills in Buffalo.
One of the Patriots’ final cuts Saturday was backup quarterback Tim Tebow. There’s been speculation that the team might look to bring back the former Bronco and Jet this season, which Brady implied would be fine with him.
“I enjoy being around him very much,” Brady said. “He’s a very talented football player. To have a chance to spend a couple of months with him and kind of become a friend of his, was a great thing. We were yesterday talking about a lot of the quarterbacks that have been through our team over the years. Everyone brings a unique skill set and attitude to the table.
“I really enjoyed being with him. And you never know. Maybe, things in the NFL always — who knows, he could be back on the team at some point this year. I wish him nothing but the best. He’s really a great person and a great player.”
The Patriots went 3-1 in the preseason and stayed relatively healthy, and now Brady is ready to see the team in a meaningful game.
“It’s been a lot of fun,” Brady said. “It’s been a lot of hard work, a lot of preparation. There’s a lot of guys that have really bought in to the way that coach [Bill] Belichick tries to coach the team. We’ll see how it goes on Sunday. That’s really when we’ll know how prepared we are, when you actually face real live NFL competition with everything on the line.
“You certainly gain a lot from the preseason and the experience of playing, but nothing’s like regular-season football. It’s just a whole different thing. It’s a whole different level of competition. It’s great to be able to game-plan for a particular team and see tendencies and see things that you really like and want to attack, and that’s what this week’s all about. Hopefully, we’re at our best on Sunday.”
The Patriots are loaded with new faces, including 14 rookies, and Brady said he’s eager to see them get the chance to validate their coach’s trust in them.
“Everyone that’s on the team has talent and has the ability to play in the NFL. You wouldn’t reach this level if you didn’t have the ability to perform,” Brady said. “The thing with NFL football is you need to perform on a daily basis, and during the season on a weekly basis in the games. That’s why guys stick around for a long time, because they can consistently perform at a high level. It’s hard to tell with any of the rookies whether they’re able to do that yet. They’ve obviously made it this far and they’ve gained the trust of coach Belichick to have them on the team. He thinks that they’re able to help us win games, which is why we’re here and why we have the job that we have, is to win. I’m anxious, like everyone else, to see that, too. You can talk about it and you think about and you hope about it, but we’ve got to go do it. That’s why you play the game.
“All the guys, we have a lot of new guys on the team, especially at the skill position, the running back position is certainly, hopefully a strength for us. The offensive line, we’ve got all returning starters, which is hopefully another strength. The receiver position, we’ve got basically all new guys with the exception of Julian [Edelman] and Matthew Slater. And then the tight end position, there’s a little bit of carryover. But we’re going to take on our own identity. Like I said, how that plays out, that remains to be seen.”
The Patriots are known for their fast-paced offense. However, with all the new players, there are questions about the team’s ability to continue at that pace. Brady said it will take time to see if the team has the personnel that can succeed in that environment.
“Yeah, we did that [play fast in the past], and we definitely used that as an advantage, as a strength,” he said. “I think we’ve learned a lot from that, both the positives and the negatives. And that’s really something that evolves over the course of a season for a team. Every team has tempo offense, whether that’s a two-minute offense, whether that’s a strictly no-huddle offense — Chip Kelly, that could be [the Eagles'] entire offense.
“The most important thing, and I think I’ve said this before, there’s no gimmicks in the NFL that work for an extended period of time. Ultimately, what wins football games is execution. And it’s the same basic fundamentals that have won football games for decades. And that’s blocking and catching and running and throwing. Just the basic fundamentals of the game. You can’t trick your way through those things. You may come up with a certain formation or a certain play or a certain blitz or a certain defensive alignment. Yeah, it may help win a game, from that standpoint. But what endures over the course of a long period of time is good, quality players playing smart, playing tough, playing physical, executing with great fundamentals. That’s the premise of football.
“We’ve had years where offense is a strength, we’ve had years where defense is a strength, we’ve had years where special teams is a strength, the running game’s a strength, the passing game’s a strength, pass coverage is a strength, turnovers are a strength – all those things play into winning and losing games.
“I think that is a trend to try to go fast, but ultimately it’s the execution of the play. Great, if we run a play in 10 seconds, great. Well, if we lose three yards on the play, it’s not great. What you need to do is move forward. You’ve got to move toward the opponent’s goal line and you’ve got to get the ball in the end zone. There’s lots of ways to get that done. For our particular team over the last years, yeah, that has been something that we’ve done a good job of. We’ll see if that’s a strength for us this year.”
Added Brady: “What’s the strength for our team? Well, I don’t know. We’ll see. We’re going to have to go out there and earn it.”
Following are more highlights from the conversation. To hear the interview, go to the Dennis & Callahan audio on demand page. For more Patriots news, visit the team page at weei.com/patriots.
On new wide receiver Danny Amendola: “He’s a very hard-working, hard-nosed football player. He wants to be out there every day — and how competitive he is. He wants to do the right thing and you can tell how much he loves the game and how much he wants to contribute and do it. This is our first opportunity to be able to do that, this weekend. He missed the last couple of preseason games, and I know he’s anxious to get out there and do it under live action. When we played against [the Rams], we game-planned for him. Our defense really speaks to the level of quality of receiver that he is.”
On the Bills: “Buffalo, I know we’ve done a good job against Buffalo over the years. They’re a tough, very tough team. We always have battles against them. We’ve come out on the winning end more times that not, but look, they give us everything that we can handle. I’ve got a ton of respect for that team. … We’ve got a great way to start. There’s no tougher challenge in the NFL than going on the road on opening day against a division opponent. I learned that a long time ago. This is going to be really a great challenge for us. There’s not a lot of information on the team that we’re playing — new coach, new coordinator, new offense, new defense. You’ve got to really prepare for everything. That’s really what we’re trying to do.”
On the start of the season: “There’s 32 teams that are very hopeful about this season. Four months from now, there’s going to be a lot of teams with a lot of crappy seasons. And nobody knows which teams those are. And there’s a lot of things that can happen in the meantime. I just hope we’re not one of those crappy teams. We do everything we can to make sure we’re one of those teams that’s still playing meaningful games at the end of the year. … It’s football season. It’s past Labor Day. We’re at a point in the year where we don’t have days to try to improve; every day counts. We as players understand the urgency of that. Everything that we’ve done for six months is for this week and it’s for this weekend. I hope our team is in a position where we’re ready to do that. I’m excited to go up to Buffalo and see what we’re made of. It should be a great weekend.”
Patriots Safety Devin McCourty joined Glenn, Lou, and Christian, and talked about covering the Steelers Wide Receivers, and how he's helping the players who are in the AFC Championship for the first time prepare.
ProFootball Talk's Mike Florio told Glenn, Lou, and Christian that the Patriots have a quiet confidence that they can outscore the Steelers, since they've proven they have the ability.
Holley and Keefe check in with NFL Network's Heath Evans for some final thoughts on the Houston win and to look ahead at the Steelers in the AFC Championship.
WEEI.com's Mike Petraglia and Ben Kichen of the 'Dale and Holley Show' talk about Isaiah Thomas' flagrant foul against the Heat, and also discuss why it's time for the Celtics to address their biggest need.
WEEI.com's Mike Petraglia and Ben Kichen of the "Dale and Holley Show" discuss the latest news on the injury that has kept Isaiah Thomas off the court and how valuable it is for Marcus Smart to stay in control.
WEEI.com's Mike Petraglia and Ben Kichen of 'The Dale and Holley Show' talk about last night's disappointing finish against the Rockets and they talk about their love for DeMarcus Cousins.
Mut, Rob, and John are talking about some of the Hall of Fame candidates who gained or lost support within the last year. Roger Clemens and Barry Bonds both gained support, while Curt Schilling lost a chunk of votes he had gotten last year.
Mut, Bradford, and Tomase are in after it was announced that Jeff Bagwell, Tim Raines, and Ivan 'Pudge' Rodriguez will be inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame. They also talk about some notable candidates who weren't elected this year like Roger Clemens and Barry Bonds.
Rob Bradford is joined by Jackie Bradley Jr. to discuss race in baseball and in Boston, along with the importance of Martin Luther King Day. The Red Sox outfielder also dives into how he never really felt comfortable in a major league clubhouse until last year, the approach he's taking heading into 2017, and why he's not playing in the World Baseball Classic.
Ken, Rear and Ty get into a very solid week for the B's beating St Louis and the Flyers and losing a hard-fought game against the Predators. Is this team turning things around? Krug and Marchand are kicking things up a notch. The guys also talk about Claude and Sweeney's job security before getting into some big hits around the league this week.
Ken, Rear and Ty talk all things Bruins as they come off a 4-0 shutout win in Florida and head to Carolina later today. Did that victory save Claude's job? The boys get into Don Sweeney's recent comments on Claude's job and what the future holds for the black and gold.
Hour two of Saturday Skate as Ken Laird and Rear Admiral kick around the perception of backup goalie Anton Khudobin, B's coach Claude Julien, and possible trade target Gabriel Landeskog.
"D-Wood" Joins the show to talk Brady vs. Rodgers and predicts a Patriots-Packers Super Bowl.
Hour 4. Bill Belichick holds his Friday press conference while Mut and Kirk try and play a game. Mut has a big announcement. Gerry calls in from the Inauguration on his crystal-clear cell phone.
Hour 3. Ben Volin shares a stat about Trump that will blow your mind. Mut wouldn't answer any questions about Trump's alleged sexual assaults.
Old Friend Tim Benz joins OMF, and while they regale tales of dysfunction, Benz manages to predict that the Patriots will win Sunday.
Glenn, Lou, and Christian enjoy the festivities ahead of the Inauguration, and give their predictions for Patriots-Steelers in the AFC Championship Game.
Glenn, Lou, and Christian love how Bill Belichick reacts to the plethora of stupid questions he receives from the Media during his Press Conferences.
Dale, Michael and Rich Keefe spend the day discussing the AFC Championship.
We close out the work week with the best sound clips of the day.
We check in with hall of famer Michael Irvin to find out what happened to his Dallas Cowboys and look at the remaining playoff match-ups.
Kirk Minihane brings Chad Finn back to the show to talk about the Charlotte Wilder story about the relationship between the Pats and Trump. Chad defends Charlotte for some of the story and her previous articles, Kirk still has problems with what he thinks is lazy reporting. Kirk and Chad also talk about whether a third sports station in Boston would be viable and if Curt Schilling will ever make it into the Baseball Hall of Fame.
Kirk Minihane has a loud and very confrontational argument with media personality John Ziegler about the guilt or innocence of Jerry Sandusky. Kirk believes him to be guilty, John believes beyond a shadow of a doubt that Sandusky is innocent. Yes, it may be an old case, but you all remember it and this episode may change your mind about some of the things you previously thought with regards to Penn State, Jerry Sandusky, and Joe Paterno.
Kirk Minihane wants to sit down with both sports editors at the major newspapers in Boston. Only Boston Herald sports editor Sean Leahy took Kirk up on the invitation to join the show. What you will hear is a great conversation between two people who are very interested in the newspaper business and how that business has changed over the years and what the future holds for newspapers. Kirk and Sean talk about the ongoing and longstanding rivalry between the Herald and Globe.
Uncle Buck, George from S**t Pats Fans Say, and Jerry Thornton talk about the Patriots history in the AFC Championship game, the big wins, the bad losses, and what it will take for the Pats to win another AFC Championship game.
Ken Laird and Chris Curtis wrap up the K&C week after a Friday show with Kirk, Mut and Ben Volin in studio.
Ken Laird and Chris Curtis recap the Thursday K&C show featuring Jon Meterparel back in the saddle.
Hour 4. Bill Belichick holds his Friday press conference while Mut and Kirk try and play a game. Mut has a big announcement. Gerry calls in from the Inauguration on his crystal-clear cell phone.More from this show
Alex's personal life comes up on the show.More from this show
Kirk Minihane brings Chad Finn back to the show to talk about the Charlotte Wilder story about the relationship between the Pats and Trump. Chad defends Charlotte for some of the story and her previous articles, Kirk still has problems with what he thinks is lazy reporting. Kirk and Chad also talk about whether a third sports station in Boston would be viable and if Curt Schilling will ever make it into the Baseball Hall of Fame.More from this show
Fauria couldn't help himself and called into Pittsburgh sports radio to show off his (terrible) Boston accent and to troll Steelers fans. Later on, Josh Miller (co-host and former Patriots punter) calls us to trash talk to Christian.More from this show
Hour 2. Mark Madden hates Dino and the show. Headlines with Kirk.More from this show