- Mike Reiss, ESPN New England Patriots reporter
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Tom Brady said that all TVs were tuned to the Broncos-Bears game during the Patriots' charter flight home from Sunday's 34-27 win over the Redskins.
"All of us were watching the game last night on the airplane; just as we were taking off was when they came back and won the game," Brady said during his weekly WEEI radio appearance.
The Patriots take on the Broncos next week.
"It was an exciting game. They obviously have a very good team," Brady said of the Broncos. "They play for 60 minutes. They've obviously closed a lot of games and finished very well. We have a huge test. We'll all be excited, and hopefully have a good week of preparation and be ready to go on Sunday."
As for quarterback Tim Tebow, Brady said the way coach Bill Belichick prepares the Patriots for games, he can expect to see Tebow highlights even though his primary focus will be the Broncos' defense.
"Everyone says he struggles throwing the ball. What I saw last night, he had no problems throwing the ball," Brady said on WEEI. "He threw the ball extremely well when I was watching."
As for not being the quarterback that everyone will be talking about this week, Brady said, "That's OK. Believe me, there is great reason. They're winning a ton of games and he's playing very well."
The Patriots' official stance seems to be that the Broncos aren't a one-man team.
"They have a good football team. It's certainly not one player," Belichick said.
"They've done it a lot of different ways. They're throwing the ball, running the ball, driving it. They've been making critical plays when they have to make them, whether it's a strip sack or a field goal. They're doing it as a team."
Not that the Pats don't have respect for Tebow. They actually took him out to dinner prior to the draft when he was eligible, and while Tebow didn't wind up with New England, Belichick offered a positive assessment of his skills.
"Tim is a strong runner, a good athlete. He does well out of the pocket," Belichick said. "It's the whole offense, though. They run the ball, a different type of attack. They have a lot of good receivers, throw the ball down the field. They (pose) a lot of challenges."
"It's the team," said Fletcher, a linebacker. "Everybody wants to make a lot out of Tebow Time or whatever. It's the team. (Sunday), the defense stepped up, the kicker made some kicks. It's not one guy. It's the team. Looking at the next game, it's not one guy. You have to look at it as a whole, offense and defense."
"We prepare for him just like we prepare for every other quarterback every other week," added Jones, a veteran defensive back. "We don't want to let that get out of hand, or we don't want that to become bigger than the game. We're going to go out here and look at him (on film) just like we looked at (the Redskins' Rex) Grossman and (the Colts' Dan) Orlovsky, and every other quarterback we play against.
"We know it's going to be a media circus, with a whole bunch of other issues. We don't want any distractions. We know they've won six in a row. They're playing good. They're hot right now ... but it's just another game on our schedule right now. We have to prepare for it just like we did every week."
Mike Reiss covers the Patriots for ESPNBoston.com. Information from ESPNBoston.com contributor Steven Krasner was used in this report.
Tom Brady said the Patriots are impressed by Tim Tebow and the Broncos.