If you caught any of the Sunday night Patriots-Buccaneers game, two things were immediately apparent: Pats head coach Bill Belichick was in mid-season, full-on hobo mode, and New England is an unmitigated train wreck without quarterback Tom Brady on the field.
Brady has yet to take a snap in the preseason, and he didn’t even make the trip to Tampa because of what some source, on deep background, described as a “sore foot.” No idea if it’s the same foot Brady was hobbling around on prior to the Super Bowl, but it was enough to keep him back in New England while his teammates got embarrassed on national television.
After the game, Belichick was his usual, forthcoming self when talking about Brady.
From John Tomase of the BOSTON HERALD:
He was asked if Brady could have played had the game been a regular-season affair.
“Well it’s not a regular-season game,” a smiling Belichick said.
Was it a last-minute decision?
“Was it a last-minute thing? I don’t know,” Belichick said. “There are a lot of players that didn’t make the trip.”
Is he concerned? Would he characterize the decision as precautionary?
“I wouldn’t characterize it,” Belichick said with another smile.
Maybe Coldplay had an encore performance at the Garden and Brady had an excused absence. Or maybe his foot really is bothering him and the Patriots are facing the very real possibility of going into the season with Matt Cassel as the starter.
If that happens — and, frankly, I’d have to think Brady would be rolled out there in a wheelchair before it does — we’ll get to see just how much of a genius Belichick really is. It sure seemed curious when the Patriots used a seventh-round pick on Cassel three years ago, but it’s hard to question an organization that struck gold with Brady, a former sixth-rounder.
But unlike Cassel, who spent his USC career backing up Carson Palmer and Matt Leinart, Brady actually started for most of his Michigan career. Plus, he’s really handsome, and there’s no accounting for that when it comes to throwing a football.