Pats not worried about Tebow hype
FOXBOROUGH, Mass. -- New England Patriots quarterback Tom Brady on Wednesday gave a thumbs up on the team's acquisition of Tim Tebow, saying he wasn't at all concerned about the media spotlight that shines on the lightning-rod quarterback and adding "it's been a fun couple days" with his new teammate at minicamp.
"I don't worry about much these days," Brady told reporters. "I've been around long enough to see all different kinds of things happen -- trades, people being cut, guys joining the team and all the media attention, what happened in 2007 [Spygate controversy], post-Super Bowls, tough losses. It comes with the territory.
"So I think everyone is prepared to deal with some level of different things that happen on a daily basis and to be mentally tough enough to push through and still be able to do your job at a high level is most important. That's really what you owe the team -- to show up every day and do your job the best you can."
Brady said he'd do all he can to acclimate Tebow to the Patriots' offense, the team hoping their future Hall of Famer rubs off on the new QB.
"Certainly any time a new teammate comes in, you welcome him and you try to do whatever you can to help them fit in and understand what we need to do," Brady said.
Patriots owner Robert Kraft embraced Tebow with open arms as well, saying he is particularly impressed with the quarterback's work ethic and attitude.
"I think he's hard-working and he's very cooperative. I don't think there's any coach who wouldn't like to have a team full of people like he is," Kraft said. "So like Brady, who goes out there and works hard, or Vince Wilfork or Jerod Mayo, they come in, they work hard, they prepare hard and they're all business. You can't get enough people like that on your team, so we're honored that he's with us."
Even the player directly above him on the depth chart, backup Ryan Mallett, toed the company line, saying he was happy to have Tebow in camp and welcomed the competition.
"He's a great player," Mallett said of Tebow. "There's always competition, at every position. It's part of the job."
Brady did stop short of stamping his approval on the Patriots potentially using Tebow in a special package on offense, one that would send him to the sideline.
"That's a very hypothetical question," said Brady, when asked how he'd react to coming off the field in favor of Tebow. "Maybe we'll deal with it if it happens."
After a couple of years in the system, Mallett has to be considered the favorite to keep the job as Tom Brady's backup, so Tebow's roster spot is far from guaranteed. The Patriots carried just Brady and Mallett at the position last season, but went three deep in 2011.
"It's kind of unique how it's set up, but I think we have three great players in that room who have the ability to go out and help our team win games," Mallett said. "We get it done how we can."
Tebow participated in his second practice with the Patriots on Wednesday, seeing action in team drills during the "opportunity period." With just two days under his belt, he has plenty to learn about the team's offensive concepts.
"I don't think evaluating players on a couple plays is a real good practice," coach Bill Belichick said Wednesday, when asked about how Tebow looked on Day 1. "We'll wait until we have a little more information, make our evaluations as a staff, talk about players kind of after a chunk of time, after we've had a chance to see things.
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"Any player you put out there the first day, it's kind of a learning experience. As you do it the second, third, fourth time, just like when we all do anything multiple times, we get better at it hopefully -- get more experience, get more comfortable and do it better. I don't think that's any different than any football player at any position."
With a much smaller media contingent at Gillette Stadium for Day 2 of the team's minicamp, it seems Tebow-mania has departed Foxborough (at least for now). None of the Patriots seemed fazed by the extra attention Tebow has gotten since he arrived.
"I'm glad I don't have to chase him around in the game," captain Vince Wilfork said jokingly. "Happy to have him as a teammate. We're going to treat him just like we treat everybody. We always treat people fair, no matter who you are. Guys come and go from here. It's a family here. He's part of our family.
"Another teammate that can help us win. I'm glad to have him as a teammate. I'm pretty sure he'll do some things that will help us win around here. It's up to the coaches to put him where he needs to be."
ESPNBoston.com's Mike Reiss and Mike Rodak contributed to this report.