Tom Brady on D&C: ‘We’re going to need to be at our best on Saturday night’ vs. Colts
|01.06.14 at 11:04 am ET|
Patriots quarterback Tom Brady made his weekly appearance on the Dennis & Callahan show Monday to preview Saturday night’s playoff game against the Colts. To hear the interview, go to the Dennis & Callahan audio on demand page.
Brady said he watched most of all four playoff games over the weekend.
“Just a lot of good football,” Brady said. “It’s good to sit around and watch a team and kind of think about some of the situations that you see so you can kind of get yourself in that mind frame where you never know what the opportunity’s going to be, or one play at this time of year could make or break a season.
“There were a lot of good football teams playing yesterday. And the teams that won all deserved it. The games this weekend are going to be equally exciting.”
The Colts pulled off the second-biggest comeback in playoff history (28 points) to beat the visiting Chiefs on Saturday.
“They kind of got themselves in a little bit of a hole there, but they dug their way out of it,” Brady said. “We’ve been in that situation. We’ve been down and haven’t really played great at any point in the game. And all of a sudden you catch some momentum and then it’s hard to slow you down. They can obviously score a lot of point on offense. Defensively, they probably have the Defensive Player of the Year in Robert Mathis.
“They’re a very good team, there’s no doubt about it. You can’t be playing this time of year without being a very good team. We worked hard last week to try to improve ourselves as a football team, and we’re going to need to be at our best on Saturday night.”
Brady said he hopes the Patriots learn from Saturday’s Colts-Chiefs game that they can’t let up if they get a lead.
“When you’re down 38-10, you’re down 28 points in the second half, you can’t make any more mistakes. Because one play by the other team, the game is basically over,” Brady said. “We’ve been in that situation where it requires a lot of improbable things to happen in order for you to win the game. Kansas City had its chances and didn’t make the most of the plays that they had. That’s why they got beat.
“If we’re in a situation where we’re ahead, we’ve got to do everything we can to make the plays necessary for us to win the game. Because there’s no lead at this point that’s safe. Kansas City had one of the better defenses in the league all season. To be up 28 points like they were, you’ve got to continue to do things that you were doing in order to keep scoring points and win the game.
“That’s a good lesson for us to learn. We’ve been down, came back, moved ahead and really held a lead and built on our leads. But there’s no relaxing in the NFL playoffs. There’s not a point where you say, ‘Well, we really have this wrapped up.’ You’ve got to keep the pedal to the metal. Especially when you’re playing a team at home like that, like Indy. Once they get the momentum, it’s hard to stop it. Then it takes a big effort from the opposing team to really get the momentum going back the other way. The Colts played a great game. They did what they needed to do to win. That’s why they advanced.”
Following are more highlights from the interview. For more Patriots news, visit the team page at weei.com/patriots.
On facing the Colts: “It all starts with Robert Mathis, being the Defensive Player of the Year basically, 19 1/2 sacks, he kind of wreaks a lot of havoc. We’ve got to be able to figure out how to slow him down. Then we’ve got to really be balanced on offense like we’ve been. We’ve got to run it, and when we throw it we’ve got to throw it good. There’s not going to be much margin of error this week. We know that. We’ve got to put everything in it. It’s the biggest week of our year.”
On the Colts defense: “[Mathis] gets the edge, and no one’s more explosive than him. He’s got a great knack for the football. Once he gets to the quarterback, it’s not as much sacking him, but it’s the strip sacks, the fumbles and the fumble recoveries is where he’s really dangerous. He’s just got an explosive move and he’s powerful. Once he gets an edge on the tackle, he’s hunting the ball down. He’s one of their biggest playmakers.
“They’ve got a bunch of interceptions this year. Darius Butler, who played for us, I’ve always really respected him and what he’s done. Vontae Davis, we’ve played him a bunch. LaRon Landry was with the Jets last year, he’s had a great year. Antoine Bethea, he’s one of the best safeties in the league. It’s a good secondary, they’ve got a good rush, some pretty athletic linebackers. It’s a really well-balanced defense.”
On if the quarterback position has changed since he joined the league: “I think there’s a lot of different ways to get it done, ultimately to try to move your team down the field and score points. Yeah, there’s a lot of intangible things that go into playing the position. Leadership is a big part of the position. I’ve always thought that was an important part of the job. Certainly, a lot of leadership comes with playing well. You’ve got to be accountable on every down, and you’ve got to be accountable in practice. You’ve got to be accountable to your teammates all the time. They’ve got to see you doing the right thing, because you really set the tone. I always believe as a quarterback if you don’t do something, why do you think your teammates are going to do it? So if you’re not paying the price, why do you think your teammates will pay the price?
“This is a game where you’ve got to put it in in advance. You’ve got to earn it before you win the game. You can’t just win the game and then not really put anything into it. Everything that you do in football has to be paid in advance. You get out of it what you put into it. Our team has found a way all year to do that. We’ve battled a lot of adversity to get to this point. We’re one of eight teams left, and we feel like we’re in a decent position. But like every week, we’ve got to put the work in. I think that’s been a big thing that we’ve talked about over the past week. That’s why we focused a lot on getting better, because we needed to make improvements. And we need to be at our best this week.”
On new Texans coach Bill O’Brien: “Truthfully, I haven’t thought about that much. Houston’s doing what Houston needs to do. And certainly Billy is. I love being with Billy. I love Billy as a part of our staff and coaching. I had a great relationship with Billy and it still continues. So, I’m always rooting for him. Going to Michigan, it was hard to root for Penn State, but I did. Now that he’s at Houston, he’s the competition. That’s just the way it goes in the NFL.”
On Josh McDaniels and the report that he had a good interview with the Browns: “Any interview with Josh is going to go well because Josh is that kind of coach. He’s one of the best in the league. I can see why it always goes well and why people would be impressed with him, because he’s a very impressive person. His knowledge of the game, of offensive and defensive football, and really what he’s brought to us and our team is really unmatched. Like I said, I love having him. I hope he doesn’t go anywhere. I let him know that, too [laughter].”
On his golf handicap: “I think I have one, but it keeps going up because I keep having kids and I have no free time. My golf game pretty much sucks at this point. … At this point I’m kind of easy money for anyone that wants to play against me in golf. Between my family and football there’s not a lot of time for anything.”