Taylor on life with Brady, Belichick

July, 12, 2011
7/12/11
9:10
PM ET
Veteran running back Fred Taylor (@FredTaylorMade ), who spent the last two seasons in New England, was a guest on SiriusXM NFL Radio on Tuesday night. He spoke with hosts Bryan McGovern and his former Jaguars teammate Maurice Jones-Drew on the "Late Hits" program.

One of the first questions posed to Taylor was what it was like to play with quarterback Tom Brady, and under coach Bill Belichick. Jones-Drew asked the question, saying, "A lot of us want to know because we all can't be around those type of guys."

"Just how to work, and how much of a business the NFL actually is," Taylor answered. "I go sometimes through my days, and even though I was considered a leader-type in Jacksonville, and I always thought I was a leader and led by example earlier in my career through my play, a big part of me feels like I cheated the [Jaguars] organization because of some [immaturity] I had, and not knowing how you're really supposed to work. If I can go back, I think that would be one of the things I would try to grasp a better concept of with the Jaguars.

"The thing about Tom is the sense of urgency. Not just the word, or the phrase, but the sense of urgency of 'this is how you have to operate.' Everything is business. Practice is business. Practice is game-mode. The thrill that you get, you should get it after you get the win. Throughout the week, it's all business and you have to prepare like that. Everyone has to be accountable. No one can just say 'they're picking on me' or 'he's picking on me', you have to be accountable and you can't feel like the coaches call you out.

"Bill was great at that. He'd give you a pop quiz in the middle of the hallway. 'What is your assignment?' You better believe, you better know it. So it's things like that, he kept you on your toes. It was great. I loved it."

Taylor talked about his two years in New England, calling the Patriots a "classy" organization, Belichick a "mastermind", Brady "amazing", while citing solid camaraderie in the locker room.

At the same time, there was some personal disappointment for him.

"I don't feel like I lived up to the reason they brought me up there," Taylor said, pointing to injuries that derailed him.

While it appears unlikely that Taylor will be back in New England (the team drafted two running backs in an attempt to get younger at the position), he was asked if he plans to play in the NFL in 2011.

"I really can't answer that question, only because I don't know the answer," Taylor said, before noting that he didn't want to go back and forth like quarterback Brett Favre did in the public eye. "I have my moments when I pick my kids up from school, I'm at peace. But then again, when I turn on the TV or I look at an old highlight clip and hear something about football, then it's 'go time'. So I really don't have a straight-up answer for you. ... I'm so back and forth, I'm straddling the fence, one foot in, one foot out. I do know that if I'm going to attack it, I have to attack it with 100 percent passion and heart and desire. I can't be straddling if I'm going to do it."

Taylor later added that he feels he could play "a couple more years."

Mike Reiss

ESPN New England Patriots reporter

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