An article by Seth Wickersham of ESPN centered around reported rifts inside the Patriots organization has generated a lot of reaction around the football world on Friday.
That reaction now includes one from the three men at the center of those purported rifts. Patriots owner Robert Kraft, coach Bill Belichick and quarterback Tom Brady released a joint statement through the team pushing back at the article’s notion that their long run together could be coming to an end because of friction behind the scenes.
“For the past 18 years, the three of us have enjoyed a very good and productive working relationship. In recent days, there have been multiple media reports that have speculated theories that are unsubstantiated, highly exaggerated or flat out inaccurate. The three of us share a common goal. We look forward to the enormous challenge of competing in the postseason and the opportunity to work together in the future, just as we have for the past 18 years. It is unfortunate that there is even a need for us to respond to these fallacies. As our actions have shown, we stand united.”
The Patriots will be back at work next week in preparation for the divisional round of the playoffs and there are sure to be questions about the ESPN article. Patriots history says it’s a good bet that most, if not all, will be answered by pointing to this statement as the team’s word on the matter.