|Tom Brady Q&A, 8/25||08.25.09 at 6:16 pm ET|
Thanks to the Patriots’ PR staff, here’s the complete transcript of Tom Brady’s Q&A with the media today at Gillette Stadium:
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|Report: Hochstein dealt to Denver||08.25.09 at 2:00 pm ET|
FOXBOROUGH — The Patriots have traded offensive lineman Russ Hochstein to Denver for a seventh-round draft pick in 2010, according to ESPN. A fifth-round pick of Tampa Bay in 2001, Hochstein was released by the Bucs in 2002 and quickly picked up by New England later that season. While with the Patriots, the versatile veteran started 12 games at guard, 10 games at center, two games at fullback and one game at tight end.
|Tuesday afternoon attendance||08.25.09 at 1:45 pm ET|
FOXBOROUGH — By our count, the following players were not present for the stretching portion of practice Tuesday afternoon: wide receiver Julian Edelman, wide receiver Brandon Tate, safety Tank Williams, cornerback Shawn Springs, running back Kevin Faulk, running back Sammy Morris, safety Ray Ventrone, linebacker Tyrone McKenzie, offensive lineman Mark LeVoir, wide receiver Wes Welker, defensive lineman Myron Pryor, defensive lineman Ron Brace and linebacker Shawn Crable.
•In addition, offensive lineman Russ Hochstein was not present — reportedly, the veteran has been traded to Denver for a seventh-round draft pick. And cornerback Jonathan Wilhite was present at practice, but was wearing the red non-contact jersey.
•In the brief portion of practice we are allowed to attend, the players also went through a pig drill with the rookies — a veteran or coach would roll out a football, and a rookie would be forced to dive after it … while being sprayed with the hose.
|Brady talks contract||08.25.09 at 12:25 pm ET|
FOXBOROUGH — Patriots quarterback Tom Brady addressed his contract situation Tuesday morning, saying he did notice the other deals that have been handed out to other quarterbacks around the league recently — like New York’s Eli Manning and San Diego’s Philip Rivers.
“I think it’s great for those players. They’ve worked hard to deserve those,” said Brady, who is signed through 2010.
“These contract things always find a way to work themselves out one way or another,” he said. “So, I think the important part this time of the year is to focus on the most important priority, which is having a great season. I’m committed to that and I know all my teammates are committed to that and if we all go out and play well, we’ll all be playing for a long time.”
Asked about his own deal, Brady smiled.
“I think we’re all probably underpaid, don’t you think? I think we all wish we were paid more,” he said. “But that’s not the reality. I’m focused on this year. I’ve thought about it and I just want to go out and have a great year.”
|Sounds of the game: Brady’s moneytalk||08.25.09 at 12:23 pm ET|
FOXBOROUGH – Toward the end of his 17-minute press conference, Tom Brady was asked about Eli Manning’s recent six-year, $97.5 million contract extension. He spoke about his future in New England and his focus for the coming season.
Christopher Price will have much more from today’s presser with the Patriots quarterback.
|Watson Starting to Feel the Pressure||08.24.09 at 7:09 pm ET|
FOXBOROUGH — Ben Watson spoke to reporters Monday morning and talked about the ongoing competition at the tight end position. Watson, who returned to the practice field Monday after an extended absence, admitted he is feeling a little behind because he hasn’t been on the practice field as much as he would like.
Jerod Mayo also spoke to reporters and talked about his relationship with Randy Moss, his role as a leader on the team, and the effect Tedy Bruschi has had on his career. Click on the audio below to listen to the audio from Monday morning.
|Highlights from Tom Brady Q&A, 8/24||08.24.09 at 4:44 pm ET|
Here are a few of the highlights from Tom Brady’s Q&A with “Dennis & Callahan” this morning on WEEI. (For audio of the entire interview, click here.)
On maybe rethinking the idea that he said he missed two-a-days and camp…
Well, to tell you the truth, for me, it’s been a lot of fun being out there, so I haven’t had as much to complain about. When you miss being out there like I did, just really the chance to be out there with my teammates and having a chance to take the field … I remember last year I didn’t get a chance to play in the preseason games, and those have been … you get so much out of those games. So I really enjoyed those too, so … it really has changed my perspective. There’s no doubt about it. I’m really looking forward to playing against Washington to see what kind of improvements we can make from week to week. It’s been a great one.
On how rusty or out of sorts he felt at the start of camp…
I felt good. We had gone through the passing camps and the minicamps in the spring, and really, the summer practices are the next step in the process. So there’s … I mean, you’re not going to start training camp in midseason form. That’s just not the reality. There’s things that change every year. The defenses you face and the players you play with. Hopefully, your mechanics don’t change as a pass, but you’ve got to get there and get the reps and see the defenders and make the throws. That’s what we’re still working through. There is rust – I think it’s just a very normal part of the process, that you’ve got to come back and re-establish the level, of play. Not only with the people who have been out, but even just coming back off of our last game ending in December to our practices starting in July. It’s just part of the process.
On the hit from Geathers and whether it was Nick Kaczur’s fault…
That was my fault, and I certainly deserve that. Nick … a lot of times when you see stuff like that happen, the initial thought is to blame the offensive line, but our offensive line, they make so few mistakes. As a quarterback, that’s part of the decision-making process, and I made a poor decision and I’m the one who paid for it. We learned from it, and we’re moving on. We’re focusing on more pf what’s ahead than what’s behind us, so … Nick takes a lot of pride in what he does. He’s been a great tackle for us. It’s unfortunate that he does get the blame, but that’s part of playing football. With televisions and announcers … no one really knows what’s going on except players and what we called. He certainly shouldn’t have been looked poorly upon for that play.
Did that hit hurt?
It didn’t hurt. It didn’t hurt. I’m glad I got hit. Honestly, it felt good for me to get hit like that. I’ve taken a lot of hits in my career, and they may look bad, a lot of them don’t feel bad. The awkward ones are the ones that hurt. The ones like that, you stand there and someone hits me, I kind of saw him at the last minute too. I kind of put my shoulder down and protected myself. It wasn’t anything too bad. I’ve been hit harder than that before.
On Moss as a mentor — what is a conversation like between him and another receiver about catching passes from Tom Brady?
He’s got as much experience as anybody and he’s played at the highest level. He’s probably seen every different coverage that’s ever been designed to stop a receiver. I mean, he’s had two people on him at one point — it was funny. At one point in Minnesota, it almost looked like the punt formation where you’d see two outside guys, they’d guy iso on him. He’s faced everything. He’s always just trying to pass on – he’s such a smart player. He’s got great instincts. He’s a great decision-maker on the field. Whenever there’s a tough decision to be made, he always makes the right decision. He sees the field as the quarterback would see it. He’s trying to pass on the information to whoever needs help so they can contribute. Randy needs people to be successful also. He can’t be the only player on the field. And a guy like Wes, he’s the biggest beneficiary of what Randy can do and vice-versa. We’re all as good as each other — if we can’t run the ball, that’s not good for the passing game. And if we can’t throw the ball, that’s not good for the running game. You need balance, and Randy needs other great receivers out there also. He’s trying to get all those guys on the same page so we can be as most effective as possible.
Over the last two games, have you spent an instant thinking about your left knee?
Other than before the game, putting on the knee brace, I’ve put it out of my mind. I try to as much as possible. It’s been a thing of the past for me. I’ve been able to participate fully this season with the team. I’ve just been really fortunate, I think. You hear a lot of horror stories of people coming off this type of injury, and for me, it’s been so smooth. I’ve had the best people, the best training staff, the best doctor. Everyone’s been right on board taking care of me. I’ve been very fortunate.
On the Wildcat and whether Julian Edelman is running it for the Patriots…
[laughter] I think it’s definitely been in the league. It really caught on after that third game last year. There’s a lot of teams that are using it. It looks like it’s pretty tough to defend. Schematically, I mean, we’re going to do whatever we have to do. … Whether it’s the Wildcat or that empty formation, it doesn’t matter. We’re always going to use whatever we have available — get the ball to the guys who can run with it and score touchdowns. That’s what we’re trying to do offensively.
I’m thinking if you split out, they’re not going to put two guys on you like they do Randy…
I want a crack block on Geathers. I want a free shot to see what I can do.
Tell us about Edelman – if he wore Welker’s uniform, we couldn’t tell the difference. He seems like a weapon that will come in handy for you…
Yeah, there’s nobody like Wes Welker, I’ll tell you that. There’s nobody in football like Wes. But Julian is … Julian is a very mature player for a rookie. We really put a lot on him and have demanded a lot out of him as a young player. He was a quarterback in college – he’s from the Bay Area, where I grew up. He went to school down the street. He … it’s been fun to have him around. A lot of enthusiasm. He’s a really good leader. He really works really hard to do exactly what you want him to do. And he’s working hard to find a role for himself. And I think when you see the type of dynamic, explosive plays that he can make out there, you’ve gottta find ways to get him on the field. Like any rookie, there’s a learning curve. I’m sure he’ll be the first to tell you he’s making plenty of mistakes out there, but we all are. But it’s been fun to have him — it really has. I can see why everyone’s excited about him. We are too.
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