Patriots quarterback Tom Brady was a full participant in Thursday’s practice and he looked fine based on all accounts from those who watched the session, which makes the few hours on Wednesday when there was a worry about his health seem like a distant memory.
There were still questions about the play that led to the sprained knee after practice, however. Mike Reiss of ESPNBoston.com spoke to a few members of the Patriots who focused more on the fact that Brady was okay than on the anything having to do with the play that sent him to the turf.
Buccaneers defensive end Adrian Clayborn pushed Patriots left tackle Nate Solder straight back into Brady after Brady released the ball, which led some to question whether Clayborn was too overzealous in his pass rush. Buccaneers coach Greg Schiano reiterated that coaches “keep warning” players about avoiding hits on quarterbacks, but that it’s difficult to prevent everything when players “get competing with each other.”
“I just think everybody’s playing football,” Schiano said, via Stephen Holder of the Tampa Bay Times. “It’s not right or wrong. It’s an inherent risk in what we do. We try to be really smart with it. They try to be really smart with it. I think both teams got just a great three days of work.”
Inherent risk is a pretty good summation of life on a football field when players are in pads and moving full speed, even if there are rules against hitting certain players.