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Bill Belichick goes all ‘best for the football team’ in explaining why Jabaal Sheard was benched

Jabaal Sheard provided a boost for the Patriots pass rush in 2015. (Maddie Meyer/Getty Images)

Jabaal Sheard provided a boost for the Patriots pass rush in 2015 but his production has dropped off significantly in 2016. (Maddie Meyer/Getty Images)

Bill Belichick knew it was coming.

Defensive end Jabaal Sheard has dropped off the face of the earth when it comes to defensive snaps with the Patriots. On Oct. 30 in Buffalo, Sheard played 56 snaps in a win over the Bills. Against Seattle after the bye, Sheard was benched to start the game and only played 16 snaps.

On Friday, when the team left for San Francisco, he was not on the flight. He stayed behind as video was posted on his Instagram account from the Celtics-Warriors game.

Sheard’s production has dropped off as much as his playing time. After eight sacks last year, he has just 3.5 this year and just a half sack in his last four games before a benching against San Francisco.

“Jabaal was inactive. That’s why he wasn’t in San Francisco,” Belichick said when first asked Monday during his conference call back in New England.

Then the Patriots coach was pressed for more explanation from Mike Giardi of CSNNE.

“As I think I’ve said on dozens of occasions, every decision we make here is based on what’s best for the football team,” Belichick answered.

Giardi informed the coach that Patriots broadcaster Scott Zolak observed on CSNNE’s pregame show Sunday that Sheard was abandoning his responsibilities during the Seattle game, freelancing and not sticking to the system, the same criticisms of exiled linebacker Jamie Collins.

“You’d have to talk to Scott about that,” Belichick replied. “I’m not sure what Scott said or what he was referring to or anything else. You really have to talk to Scott about that.”

Will Sheard have a clean slate to get back this week against the Jets?

“Well, as I already said, we’re going to make the decisions that we feel are best for the football team, last week, this week, next week, every week. I don’t know how I could put it any differently. Last year, the year before that, five years before that, 10 years before that, 15 years before that. I mean, I don’t really understand why that’s hard to understand.”

Giardi said that the questions about Sheard arise from the drastic drop-off in defensive snaps for the defensive end in the final year of his two-year, $11 million contract.

“Okay,” Belichick said.

Blog Author: 
Mike Petraglia

Tom Brady shares his perspective on Tony Romo-Dak Prescott situation

Tom Brady

Tom Brady

Tom Brady has a unique perspective on the Tony Romo-Dak Prescott situation with the Cowboys.

After Romo was injured, Prescott took over and has ran with the starting job, leading the Cowboys to nine straight wins, and now as assumed the starting job even with Romo healthy again.

Last week Romo gave a press conference sharing his feelings on the situation, saying even though it is hard to admit, Prescott deserves to keep his starting job.

Brady is all too familiar with the situation as in 2001, Brady took over for Drew Bledsoe after he was injured in Week 2 and never lost the starting job again.

Even though Brady admitted he didn’t see Romo’s press conference, he offered his perspective.

“I’ve been in a lot of quarterback competitions in college and I think there were some things that maybe you didn’t necessarily agree with, but when you’re part of a team and your coach makes a decision, you don’t want to tear your team apart based on your own personal goals,” Brady said Monday on Kirk & Callahan. “I learned that lesson in college. My college coach, he felt like there was a younger player that deserved to play and he thought I deserved to play as well, so he played both of us. I wish I played every snap. That wasn’t the case and I was a team captain and I wanted to show my teammates that the team goals were bigger than my goals. It was tough, but I learned a lot from it, too. I think a lot of my teammates gained a lot of respect from that because everyone wants to be out there on every play.”

Brady was also asked if during the 2001 season he ever thought Bledsoe would take over again?

“At that point I was just living in the moment,” he said. “I had no experience in pro football. I didn’t know how anything worked. Drew was an amazing player. An incredible player for our team. He was a leader and he was a franchise quarterback. He suffered a horrific injury and I had a chance to go in and play. I wanted to do the best I could do. That’s what I tried to do. That’s a lot of the lessons I learned in college and I whatever the coach decided, I was going to do the best I could do and that was what I could control. When that was your attitude, it’s not I want the other guy to do bad so I can can play. I think in a lot of ways if you’re competition plays well, that brings you to another level and teaches you to compete. You have to focus on the things you need to do better and you need to do at a higher level.”

Blog Author: 
Ryan Hannable

Tom Brady shares his perspective on Tony Romo-Dak Prescott situation

Tom Brady

Tom Brady

Tom Brady has a unique perspective on the Tony Romo-Dak Prescott situation with the Cowboys.

After Romo was injured, Prescott took over and has ran with the starting job, leading the Cowboys to nine straight wins, and now as assumed the starting job even with Romo healthy again.

Last week Romo gave a press conference sharing his feelings on the situation, saying even though it is hard to admit, Prescott deserves to keep his starting job.

Brady is all too familiar with the situation as in 2001, Brady took over for Drew Bledsoe after he was injured in Week 2 and never lost the starting job again.

Even though Brady admitted he didn’t see Romo’s press conference, he offered his perspective.

“I’ve been in a lot of quarterback competitions in college and I think there were some things that maybe you didn’t necessarily agree with, but when you’re part of a team and your coach makes a decision, you don’t want to tear your team apart based on your own personal goals,” Brady said Monday on Kirk & Callahan. “I learned that lesson in college. My college coach, he felt like there was a younger player that deserved to play and he thought I deserved to play as well, so he played both of us. I wish I played every snap. That wasn’t the case and I was a team captain and I wanted to show my teammates that the team goals were bigger than my goals. It was tough, but I learned a lot from it, too. I think a lot of my teammates gained a lot of respect from that because everyone wants to be out there on every play.”

Brady was also asked if during the 2001 season he ever thought Bledsoe would take over again?

“At that point I was just living in the moment,” he said. “I had no experience in pro football. I didn’t know how anything worked. Drew was an amazing player. An incredible player for our team. He was a leader and he was a franchise quarterback. He suffered a horrific injury and I had a chance to go in and play. I wanted to do the best I could do. That’s what I tried to do. That’s a lot of the lessons I learned in college and I whatever the coach decided, I was going to do the best I could do and that was what I could control. When that was your attitude, it’s not I want the other guy to do bad so I can can play. I think in a lot of ways if you’re competition plays well, that brings you to another level and teaches you to compete. You have to focus on the things you need to do better and you need to do at a higher level.”

Blog Author: 
Ryan Hannable

As stretch drive looms, who holds lead in race for NFL MVP?

In a wide-open chase for this year’s MVP, a handful of candidates have distinguished themselves at the start of the stretch drive. In no particular order, here’s our current top 10.

Quarterback Tom Brady: The quarterback has fallen off the red-hot pace he established through his first few games back after his Deflategate ban, but through his first six games, Brady is still posting comparable numbers to his remarkable 2007 campaign.

Bottom line? His team currently holds the top spot in the AFC and he’s putting up big numbers. In what is shaping up to be a season where there’s no consensus candidate, he remains a strong possibility to take home his third MVP award.

Quarterback Matt Ryan: The Boston College product has had the best season of his career to this point; with Brady missing the first four games of the year, Ryan is at or near the top of most major passing categories. (If he’s in second, more often than not, the only guy he’s trailing is Drew Brees. And HE isn’t getting any MVP votes this year.) Ryan is 236-for-346 (68 percent) with 3,247 passing yards, 24 touchdowns, five interceptions and a passer rating of 115.1 for the 6-4 Falcons. Good numbers that should continue to have him in the hunt as the playoffs loom.

Running back Ezekiel Elliott: With Brady and Ryan, one of three serious candidates at this point on the calendar. The rookie out of Ohio State is having one of the best seasons of any young running back in recent history with 1,102 yards on 223 carries for nine touchdowns in 10 games. The 6-foot, 225-pounder us on pace to finish with a whopping 1,763 rushing yards. If he does that and the Cowboys finish 15-1 or 14-2, it would be hard for many national voters look past him.

Quarterback Dak Prescott: The Elliott-Prescott combination has really clicked for Dallas this year, and the quarterback has done more than his share in getting the Cowboys to 9-1. The 6-foot-2, 225-pounder has gone 214-for-316 (68 percent), with 2,640 passing yards, 17 touchdowns, just two picks and a passer rating of 108.6. But could Prescott and Elliott end up splitting votes?

Quarterback Russell Wilson: From this perspective, Wilson has a fantastic opportunity to make a closing statement over the final month-plus of the season. The signal-caller, who finally appears to be over the health issues that dogged him for much of the first half of the season, has the Seahawks back on track and playing fantastic football. The numbers aren’t overwhelming when stacked against some of his contemporaries: on the year, he is 221-for-335 (66 percent), with 2,714 passing yards, 11 touchdowns, two interceptions and a 99.3 passer rating. But if he stays healthy, Seattle continues to play well down the stretch and ends up with 12 or more wins, Wilson is going to get lots of votes.

Linebacker Von Miller: Still the most recognizable face on one of the best defenses in the league, Miller is going to get consideration for a few reasons, not the least of which is the fact that there will be voters who will consider the list of favorites and go out of their way to consider a defensive candidate. The simple fact of the matter is that Miller is tied for second with 9.5 sacks and is a high-profile guy. In a year where J.J. Watt is off the board, he’ll be a part of the conversation. (Two pass rushers who could challenge him with a strong finish are Kansas City’s Dee Ford or Seattle’s Cliff Avril.)

Quarterback Derek Carr: The youngster out of Fresno State deserves a place at the table for helping steer the Raiders to a 7-2 mark heading into this week’s Monday night game against the Texans. A smart and steady presence, he’s 234-for-354 (66 percent) with 2,505 passing yards, 17 touchdowns, three interceptions and a 99.1 passer rating. He’s not going to win it, but to have the 25-year-old mentioned in the same breath with the league’s top-level quarterbacks is enough for him at this stage of his development.

Wide receiver Julio Jones: If we have to include a pass catcher in this discussion, Jones is the guy. For what it’s worth, you could make a very good argument that Antonio Brown deserves a spot here, and if Brown keeps coming on down the stretch, he could easily take Jones’ spot here. But in the meantime, we’re going to go with the 6-foot-4, 220-pounder out of Alabama, who leads the league in receiving yards (1,105), receiving yards per game (111) and pass plays of 20-plus yards (21), all while garnering 61 catches (sixth in the NFL).

Running back David Johnson: Arizona’s 6-foot-1, 224-pounder has fast become one of the most dynamic backs in the league; he has 197 carries for 863 yards and 10 touchdowns on the ground and 47 catches on 73 targets for 510 yards and a pair of touchdowns as a pass catcher. He won’t win the MVP, but deserves consideration as one of the best multidimensional threats in the game.

Quarterback Kirk Cousins: This is an admittedly quarterback-heavy group, so let’s consider the inclusion of Cousins to be along the same lines as when we put Sam Bradford in our last MVP roundup. Mr. You Like That has Washington in the NFC East race with a passing performance that has him in the top 10 in most major categories, including total passing yards (3,091, third overall), yards per game (309, fourth), completion percentage (67, tied for seventh) and passer rating (98.8, 10th). At the very least, the pending free agent will make a ton of dough this offseason.

Blog Author: 
Christopher Price

Patrice Bergeron’s slow start won’t last forever

Patrice Bergeron should pick things up soon. Ron Chenoy/USA Today Sports)

Patrice Bergeron should pick things up soon. Ron Chenoy/USA Today Sports)

Patrice Bergeron has had an unusually slow start to the 2016-17 campaign, notching just 2-2—4 totals in 14 games. Both assists came in the game at Tampa on Nov. 3, while he scored in his first game on Oct. 20 vs. the Devils then again on Nov. 5 against the Rangers.

Throw in scoreless streaks of five and (currently) six games and it’s clear that Bergeron is scuffling a bit when it comes to contributing offensively.

Still, it’s nothing to really be alarmed about.

Bergeron and his linemates Brad Marchand and David Pastrnak have held onto the puck more than any other trio in the league. Bergeron has been getting over four shots per game during his current scoreless slump. Opportunities haven’t been the issue as much as puck luck — Bergeron’s shooting percentage of 3.8 percent is well below his career average of 10.1.

It’s not like the perennial Selke candidate just lost it a year after reaching his career high of 32 goals. The heart-and-soul of the B’s just needs to keep doing what he’s doing and the points will return because the chances are there. But the sooner that is the better it will be for the Bruins.

Injuries are part of life in the NHL but the last week was unusually rough even by NHL standards. The league lost Steven Stamkos, Taylor Hall, and Johnny Gaudreau in the blink of an eye. You hate to see guys end up on the shelf, especially talent of this magnitude. But the losses are just a reminder that hockey doesn’t discriminate when it comes to injuries. Still, the league will go on as it always does.

After a torrid start to the year, the Oilers have wafted back down to Earth. The Connor McDavid-led squad has lost five straight and will drop from the top eight teams in the West if they don’t stop the bleeding soon. Both conferences are so ridiculously tight right now that a team can go from the top of the standings to on the outside looking in very quickly as the Oilers have shown. We’ll get a good look at just how the young captain McDavid handles the adversity in fixing his team.

Winnipeg’s Mark Scheifele and Tampa Bay’s Nikita Kucherov are currently tied for the NHL lead with 22 points apiece, just like everybody predicted back in October.

Old friend Tyler Seguin’s 7-14—21 is good for third place and he will surely be in the run for the Art Ross Trophy once again. Jimmy Hayes and Joe Morrow, what the Bruins have left to show for the trade, have zero points in 19 combined games.

After two straight 100-point seasons, the Islanders have really struggled out of the gate. They’ve won just five of 17 games and their 14 points has them tied with the cellar-dwelling Buffalo Sabres. New ownership isn’t happy with the underachievement and coach Jack Capuano is feeling the heat. The eight seed currently has 20 points so the Isles can get right back in it by running off a few wins in a row. But if they don’t turn it around soon, the season can slip away from them real quick.

Blog Author: 
Rear Admiral

Julian Edelman touchdown dance dedicated to dead rapper, not Merton Hanks, in Patriots win

Anyone who saw Julian Edelman’s funky-chicken strut following a 3-yard touchdown in Sunday’s victory over the 49ers probably assumed the Bay Area native was sending some love to former Niners safety Merton Hanks, who used to celebrate big plays with a seizure seemingly involving a quintuple-jointed neck.

Not so, as Edelman explained to reporters in San Francisco after the game.

“It was for Mac Dre,” Edelman said. “He’s no longer with us. It was something if you played football in the Bay Area, you know about it. If you don’t, that’s your fault.”

For those who don’t know, Mac Dre was an Oakland rapper who was shot and killed in a drive-by shooting after performing in Kansas City in 2004 at age 34. The move Edelman copied was known as, “The Thizzle Dance,” per the good folks at NESN.com, and it was in honor of the man who gave us such works as, “Stupid Doo Doo Dumb,” and “Heart of a Gangsta, Mind of a Hustla, Tongue of a Pimp.”

Edelman caught eight passes for 77 yards, one score, and one dance in the Pats’ 30-17 win.

Blog Author: 
WEEI

While some MLB teams start opening checkbooks, Red Sox remain reluctant to dive into free agent market

Dave Dombrowski. (Mark J. Rebilas/USA Today Sports)

Dave Dombrowski. (Mark J. Rebilas/USA Today Sports)

For a second straight offseason, it appears Dave Dombrowski wasn’t steering us down the wrong path.

The Red Sox president of baseball operations proclaimed during the recent GM meetings that his team’s timeline when it came to signing free agents was going to be dictated by the new Collective Bargaining Agreement (which expires Dec. 1). The Sox, Dombrowski explained, would have to wait to see what the new CBA stated when it came what level the luxury tax threshold would land at.

As Dombrowski insinuated, it would be preferred by the club if it could avoid going over the newly-defined tax threshold by managing their free agent acquisitions.

According to industry sources, that truly appears to be the Red Sox’ strategy.

Those talking with the Red Sox throughout the first few weeks of the offseason have come away with the feeling that they aren’t going to truly “play” in the free agent market until the new rules are set. Dombrowski is certainly expressing interest to key targets (such as Carlos Beltran), but as of Monday patience was still the priority.

While sources suggest some clubs have joined the Red Sox in their approach, showing some “trepidation” to dive head-first into the market, there has been some movement.

Reliever Brett Cecil, for instance, just agreed to a four-year, $30.5 million deal with the Cardinals, while outfielder Josh Reddick inked a four-year, $52 million contract to play for the Astros. It should be noted, however, that both clubs wouldn’t be near the luxury tax threshold, with St. Louis hovering around $145 million and Houston in the vicinity of $100 million.

The Red Sox are already committed to a payroll that is up against the current luxury tax threshold of $189 million. Dombrowski has stated the club’s focus this offseason is to find a replacement for David Ortiz, and a reliable eighth-inning relief pitcher.

Dombrowski suggested on the final day of the GM meetings that the relief pitcher may come before the potential designated hitter due to the level of financial commitment to each.

“I don’t know if it’s necessarily going to be a short, immediate type of situation,” said Dombrowski of a commitment to a new DH. “There might have to be some patience involved in that because a lot of guys fit that type of description. I also am not really pushing that as much because of the simple situation, we don’t know what the CBT situation is and the rules we’re playing under in the basic agreement. It’s really hard to push this some of those things until you really know what rules you’re playing under.”

The current CBA runs out Dec. 1, but MLB commissioner Rob Manfred recently stated that he believed both sides were close on getting a new deal done. The New York Times is reporting that the luxury tax threshold is, indeed, set to increase, although it is not known to what levels.

Blog Author: 
Rob Bradford

Tom Brady has high praise for rookie WR Malcolm Mitchell: ‘I can’t say enough good things about him’

Tom Brady had a lot of good things to say about Malcolm Mitchell on Sunday. (Kelley L Cox/USA Today Sports)

Tom Brady had a lot of good things to say about Malcolm Mitchell on Sunday. (Kelley L Cox/USA Today Sports)

As has been the case over the years, it takes a lot for a receiver to learn the Patriots offense and get the trust of quarterback Tom Brady, but it appears rookie wide receiver Malcolm Mitchell has already done so.

Mitchell was the Patriots’ leading receiver in their 30-17 win over the 49ers Sunday where he caught four passes for 98 yards and a touchdown.

Brady noted specifically on his 56-yard touchdown the play only called for a six-yard route, but Mitchell adjusted to Brady scrambling and it paid off.

“Yeah, he’s beyond smart enough,” Brady said Monday on Kirk & Callahan. “He’s very smart. I can’t say enough good things about him and what he’s accomplished and getting his opportunity and taking advantage of it. He was a fourth-round pick from Georgia. I don’t know what people expected from him this year, but I know our coaches really liked him before the draft. I watched some tape on him the day of the draft just kind of because I knew we were interested. The things that I saw I really liked.

“He’s been out on the field a lot. He’s dealt with a couple of little injuries from time-to-time. He’s just a young kid that really wants to work hard and do the right thing. He’s got a great personality. It’s a positive personality. He has a smile on his face. He shows up to work every day with a great attitude. That’s how you become a professional. You’re dealing with a lot of grown men and when you come in at 22 or 23 years old, you better know what your competition is. The more you don’t really commit yourself, the harder it’s going to be and Malcolm has fully committed himself to being the best player he can be. It’s really shown when he gets his opportunities.”

(Click here for more of what Brady had to say on the show, specifically about his increased mobility.)

Mitchell has been active for nine games this season and has 11 catches for 193 yards and a touchdown. Brady gives a lot of credit for Mitchell’s success to his hands.

“He’s got great hands, he’s got really big hands,” Brady said. “He’s not 6-foot-4, but he has hands. It’s kind of Gronk [Rob Gronkowski]. I don’t know Gronk has ever done a catching drill in his life. He just — it’s like throw ball, catch ball, no problem. Some receivers do catching drills every day and Malcolm, he’s got so much confidence in his hands that it’s great for run after catch because the ball never gets to your body and slows you down. You can snatch the ball, plus that catch radius allows you to make catches in traffic when defenders are on you. You can really snatch the ball away from the defensive backs. He’s just done a great time. It’s this time of year where you need everybody on your roster and with [Chris Hogan] not being able to be active for the game, Malcolm got more of an opportunity and he did a great job taking advantage of that.”

Blog Author: 
Ryan Hannable

Mass. people are blaming Donald Trump for their weight gain

Boston GlobeCome this time of year, it’s usually the holidays that lead to overeating. But now another event has some people packing on the pounds: the election of Donald Trump.

From Massachusetts General Hospital’s Weight Center, to a pilates studio in Belmont, to a South End bakery, some Hillary Clinton supporters have taken to stress eating, bigly.

“The response is similar to what you see after a divorce or a death in the family,” said Fatima Cody Stanford, an obesity-medicine physician at MGH’s Weight Center.

“Numb” and “fearful” patients are backsliding into comfort food, she said, adding that it’s too early to know whether people will lose the Trump weight.

“We’ve never dealt with anything like this,” she said. “But I can say that if you look at historical events that are very stressful, they can lead to long-term weight retention.”

Alas, as aspiring dieters know, plain old life can lead to long-term weight retention — as can celebratory events, meaning elated Trump voters may be gaining weight, too. Yes, in a rare show of bipartisanship, those on both sides of the aisle could be putting on the Trump 10.

We are running out of things to blame for gaining weight.

I once read a magazine article with the headline, “Is your house making you fat?” So blaming outside factors for weight gain is nothing new –Trump is just the easiest target right now.

My favorite part of this is when one Burlington resident said, “Last night I went for homemade mac and cheese. It was satisfying, although that damn [jerk] is still going to be my president.”

And a Pilates teacher is freaking out because she had two glasses of wine three nights in a row and that’s just so out of character for her. An executive for a diet app company said after the election, “A lot of our active users couldn’t even stand to log in.”

People who are gluten-free are eating regular bread. One Somerville vegan said she just wants to be around people an if someone tries to feed her a vegetarian meal instead of a vegan one she would eat it because she values the human connection over being vegan.

It’s just utter chaos out there.

On the flip side, the “Trump 10″ is also going the other way: “A (smaller) group of Clinton diehards have already stopped eating out of sorrow.”

Trump’s win has obviously deeply affected these people, but I applaud them for not being too dramatic about it.

Blog Author: 
Lucy Burdge

Tom Brady on K&C gives insight on increased mobility: ‘It really does help our offense’

Tom Brady

Tom Brady

Patriots quarterback Tom Brady made his weekly appearance on Kirk & Callahan Monday morning to discuss Sunday’s 30-17 win over the 49ers where he displayed his increased mobility on at least three of his four touchdown passes. To hear the interview, visit the K&C audio on demand page.

Brady’s ability to move around in the pocket is something he’s worked on a good amount of late, especially with personal trainer Alex Guerrero. The quarterback gave credit to Guerrero, as well as his other coaches.

“[Alex has] been so instrumental in everything that I’ve done and been able to achieve physically as I’ve got older,” Brady said. “We’ve worked together for so long. He knows me so well. I just think he’s the best. It’s just doing what I believe is the right way to prepare your body to play and train. We’ve been able to get more efficient and get better each year at certain things. I think those things are paying off. Obviously health and durability is No. 1. I really try and take a lot of pride in that and being available for my teammates every single week and that’s a year-round process.

“You have different parts of your game you want to improve. I’ve worked with a couple of different quarterback coaches over the years — Tom Martinez, until he unfortunately passed away five years ago. Working with Tom House on mechanics and actually quarterback techniques. Then, Alex so much with my body and my training, along with the Patriots training staff that is there on the workout staff. It’s definitely a team effort.”

The quarterback said he has taken two or three tenths of seconds off his 40-time [40-yard dash] from when he was at the combine in 2000 when he ran a 5.25-second 40 coming out of Michigan. Working on his first step has been the biggest reason why, and has helped him in games avoiding the pass rush.

“I’ve really tried to work on the first step,” he said. “I don’t think my instincts are in the pocket to move and scramble where I would say just scramble — those aren’t really inbred in me just based on my style of play. It never has been. I’ve just tried to stay in the pocket and buy time in the pocket to allow my receivers to get open. Now, it’s just extended where that pocket is now. Now that pocket can be probably maybe 20 yards wide as opposed to six yards wide. What has been, I think maybe a little more is avoiding the rush, sliding in the pocket, buying a little bit more time, but now being able to avoid a rush a little bit to buy time has been good. You see the way that so many of these great quarterbacks in the NFL can do that. I will never be able to do it like a Russell Wilson or Tyrod Taylor, those are their physical gifts. Also, if I can add one or two plays a game and maybe three, four or five times a game, it really does help our offense.”

It was a homecoming for Brady Sunday as he returned to the Bay Area to play a game for the first time. He had a number and family and friends in attendance and even got to go to his childhood home on Saturday.

“There were a lot of people after the game,” Brady said. “Before the game I actually had a chance — where we stayed in Redwood City is only about five minutes from my house where my parents live. I was able to go over and see my parents on Saturday and all my sisters came over and all my nieces and nephews. I got the chance — this time of the year — for maybe three or four hours to kind of be in my house where I grew up in and spend time with my parents. It was great. It was a great Saturday afternoon. The rest was all football.

“Sunday morning was all football and obviously playing the game. Postgame I probably had 50 or 60 people to say hi too, which was really fun. I don’t get to the Bay Area very often and certainly don’t get to see all the people that I grew up on the same block as, or guys I went to high school with and parents of some of my best friends. It was just really neat. It’s hard to describe because I’ve never even even that experience. It was a little bit emotional and it was just a really great experience.”

Brady did return to the Bay Area last February for the Super Bowl when all the previous Super Bowl MVPs were honored. There were boos in the crowd when he was introduced, but he said he didn’t even notice.

“I didn’t even realize I got boos,” he said. “Going out there and you’re kind of looking where to go, where to walk. You have all these other guys, these other great football players. I kind of walked out and put my hand up. I think I was standing next to Terrell Davis and he was kind of laughing and I was like, ‘Why is he laughing?’ Afterwards, he was like, ‘Man, everyone was booing.’ And I was like, ‘Wow, they were?’ Ignorance is bliss I guess.”

Last week there was a lot of attention on his Foot Locker commercial poking fun at Deflategate. The quarterback addressed the ad again.

“I had a lot of time of my hands,” Brady said. “They came on and said this is for this Week of Greatness. They do a bunch of funny commercials with guys over the years and it’s something you want to do. I ended up deciding to do it. I’m glad people liked it. It was fun to do.”

Added Brady: “Peyton [Manning] was always pretty good in all those commercials and I did Saturday Night Live, so there’s some humor in there for me. It was nice to be able to show a little humor.”

As for if he will ever appear on Saturday Night Live again, don’t count on it.

“I don’t know. I don’t know if I would do it,” Brady said. “The circumstances would have to be right. It’s a big commitment. The offseason, it’s hard to commit.”

Blog Author: 
Ryan Hannable