In their first game since an ESPN report suggested that personality conflicts may cause a split among the three most important members of the Patriots’ organization, the Patriots romped. After the game, quarterback Tom Brady was asked whether he personally enjoyed what amounted to a silencing of the critics.
“You know what, no,” Brady told reporters following the 35-14 victory over Tennessee. “I’ve been around long enough; 18 years. There’s been so many nice things said about me. That just goes with the territory. I just try to be consistent, show up and do the best I can do every week for the team and regardless of whether I’m the worst quarterback in the league or the best quarterback in the league or somewhere in-between, it’s just my job is to do the best I can do for us every week. It was a good team win today. We’re going to need another one next week. Whoever we play is going to be a great team. I’m looking forward to playing in the championship game.”
Whatever is going on for Brady and the team away from the field, Brady agreed that the football field has become a sanctuary for him.
“I think it always feels that way and I think being on the field is a great place to, you know, that’s where you go prove it,” Brady said. “You can talk all day about what you’re going to do or what you can do. Ultimately, you’ve got to go out there and do it. I think just having the opportunity to go play and I’ve had so many great teammates over the years and this team has done such a great job this year focusing on what we need to. When you get out there, that’s the best part of the week. To be in the playoffs and to play well and to advance is just really great for this team. Like I said, we’ve just got to do it again next week.”
Brady completed 35 of 53 passes on Saturday night (68 percent) for 337 yards and three touchdowns. He wasn’t sacked, and he had no turnovers.
Not bad for a guy who turned 40 before the season even began. He’ll need to keep it up as he gets one week, and then another two weeks, deeper into his fifth decade if he wants to get his hands on a Lombardi Trophy for the sixth time.