Wednesday, September 11, 2013
QB Watch: Patriots' Tom Brady
By Mike Reiss
A weekly analysis of the New England Patriots’ quarterback play.
Rewind: It was comeback No. 36 for Tom Brady. On a day when the Buffalo Bills had him on the move, Brady delivered when the Patriots needed it most, marking the 36th time he has led the team to a victory from a fourth-quarter deficit or tie. How's this for clutch? On the Patriots' final drive, which produced the game-winning field-goal, Brady was 7-of-7 for 36 yards.
Fast-forward: New York Jets coach Rex Ryan's defensive scheme has challenged Brady in the past, as Ryan throws a lot of different looks at him, mixing coverage concepts with heavy pressure. There have been times when Brady has been at his best against the scheme, and other times -- such as the 2010 divisional round of the playoffs -- when Ryan had the last laugh. It's always a good chess match.
Wild-card category: Brady isn't known for his running, but there was one play in the season-opener when he regretted not tucking the ball when it appeared he had some room close to the goal line. If the Jets execute more of a coverage-based scheme and play mostly man, don't be surprised if Brady attempts to make a play or two with his feet when things break down.
Prediction: With Danny Amendola unlikely to play, and running back Shane Vereen placed on the injured reserve/designated to return list, Brady is without two of his top weapons. That could make it a struggle for Brady and the passing game. But here's one thing we wouldn't be surprised to see: At least one deep shot down the field to rookie receiver Josh Boyce, who can flat-out fly.