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Tom Brady probably won’t greet Andrew Luck before the game: ‘I tend to keep to myself’

FOXBORO — It’s not that Tom Brady [1] has anything against Andrew Luck [2]. It’s just that come Sundays, it’s all business for him.

Brady hinted Thursday that he’ll likely save the well wishes and small talk for after their game.

“I don’€™t know. We’€™ll see,” Brady said when asked. “Usually, I don’€™t go out too early anymore. I tend to just keep to myself.

Luck, during a conference call on Wednesday, indicated he had never met Brady. It was Peyton Manning [3] who, in 2001, when Brady took over for Drew Bledsoe [4], introduced himself before a game at Foxboro.

“Yeah, I remember I was out there warming up for the game and he came over and he said, ‘€˜Hey Tom, I’€™m Peyton,'” Brady recalled Thursday.

His reply?

“Obviously, it’€™s something I probably couldn’€™t repeat but that was ‘€“ we’€™ve become friends since,” Brady chuckled. “Andrew is obviously playing very well and they’€™re 6-3 and they’€™re doing a great job and he’€™s had a great season. That’€™s part of the challenge this weekend.”

How does Brady feel on turning the page on this rivalry from Peyton Manning to a new, young gun? His answer says it all.

“My focus has been on what that defense does. It’€™s always the Colts defense and it’€™s always centered around two players and those two guys are still there. That’€™s really the challenge for us this week, is trying to figure out how to block that entire front. There are a lot of different looks from the last time we played them, trying to understand the scheme and how they’€™re doing things but they’€™re good and they really rush the passer and that’€™s a big challenge.

Here is the rest of Thursday’s Q and A with Brady at Gillette Stadium [5]:

Q: Do you see a lot of similarities between the Colts and the Steelers, like Coach [Bill] Belichick [6] does?

TB: If he says it, it must be true so I’€™d hate to disagree with him. I’€™ve just been trying to study what they do this year and try to focus on that. They’€™re playing really well. So, hopefully we play well.

Q: If you can think back to your rookie year, would the rookie Tom Brady have expected to play and play well?

TB: It’€™s always challenging for those rookies. As a rookie, I was like fourth-string and eating nachos before the game in the stands. There wasn’€™t much of me thinking of playing. I always admire those rookies who can do it because it is such a challenge, whether you’€™re a defensive end like Chandler Jones, or Dont’€™a Hightower or Andrew Luck or any of these rookies who really play a big role for a certain team. It’€™s a real credit to them and their ability to transition and focus on all these new things that have really come about and go out there and play well.

Q: Can you relate to being a leader and a guy that is getting a lot of attention and being the focal point because you have to be in the huddle?

TB: Yeah, that’€™s part of the position as well. That happened, I had quite a few, 18 months, to develop camaraderie with the guys that I played with and it was a lot of time and practice and extra coaching sessions and so forth. For those rookies, coming right from college to this position is very challenging.

Q: How much confidence did you build from that first start against Indianapolis through the end of the season?

TB: I don’€™t remember that long ago. It doesn’€™t seem like that long ago but it does. But hopefully everyone improves over the course of a season, whether you’€™re a young player or a veteran player, that’€™s the goal. I feel like today, had a very good practice and now finally you really start to feel like you’€™re in the middle, it took however many games ‘€“ four preseason and nine regular season and you’€™ve played 13 games ‘€“ and you’€™re like, ‘€˜Now I really start feeling good out there on every play.’€™ It’€™s just part of the NFL season.

Q: Is Aqib Talib [7] someone else to give you fits in practice?

TB: Yeah, he’€™s been competing hard out there. It’€™s good work for us. He’€™s been fun to have out there. I’€™ve had a few conversations with him. We’€™ll see, hopefully he can help.