Belichick: Together, Brady and Branch ‘almost always do what you would want them to do’
|11.28.11 at 5:46 pm ET|
FOXBORO — I wrote a little bit about the relationship between quarterback Tom Brady and wide receiver Deion Branch in this week’s edition of “Ten Things We Learned Sunday.” On Sunday against the Eagles, Branch finished with six catches for 125 yards, including a 63-yarder that demonstrated the eerie sense of unspoken communication between the two.
On Monday, I asked Patriots coach Bill Belichick about the depth of the bond between the two. Specifically, if the level of chemistry between Brady and Branch was just something that was naturally built over the years or something the two had to work at forging.
“It’s probably a combination of all of those,” Belichick said. “It starts with [the fact that] you have two smart guys, both very instinctive players that if something comes up that you haven’t done or talked about before, I’d say both of them probably would do the right thing — or what you would want them to do if you haven’t told them what to do; what they would do is most of the time what you would want them to do. That puts them pretty much on the same page to begin with.
“Certainly the experience and reps they’ve had together [in] practice, games and walkthroughs and talking about situations and talking about things that come up, I’m sure that’s all added to it. And of course, actually going out there and doing it on the field in live game situations, under pressure, adds to it as well.
“Deion is a very instinctive receiver. He has a great sense of timing, of when the quarterback is ready to throw the ball, when he needs to be open, how to get open. Tom, from his position, kind of has that same sense of what the receiver would expect him to do and what he should do in certain situations and that’s almost always what Deion would do. Again, we certainly have rules and kind of guidelines for all players and all situations, but inevitably things come up that either go against the grain or it’s not quite the way we’ve talked about it and the player has to make a decision. I would say those guys almost always do what — if you had gone over it — what you would have wanted them to do.”