FOXBORO -- Tom Brady tried to defer the question to his coach, Bill Belichick, on Wednesday.
The topic was Dan Marino's single-season passing record, which was broken by Drew Brees on Monday night. Brees' final pass of the game helped him leap-frog Marino's 5,084 passing yards. He now holds the record with 5,087.
With one week remaining in the regular season, both Brady (4,897) and Aaron Rodgers (4,643) will also have a legitimate chance to surpass Marino, who held the record since 1984.
When Brady was asked about why -- after nearly 30 years -- Marino's record could be broken by three different quarterbacks in one season, the Patriots' quarterback said, "You'll have to ask Bill about that."
Belichick spoke moments before Brady, and he was asked several times.
"I think it's all a function of execution," said Belichick.
That was his best answer.
Then, when asked if Marino would throw for more than 5,084 yards in a single season if he played now, with the current NFL rules, Belichick responded with, "If ifs and buts were candy and nuts, then every day would be Christmas. I don't know. I have no idea."
Belichick was then asked again.
"Those rules have been in place for 15 years," he said. "Talk to the people who make the rules. They do all those studies. Trust me, they do all those studies, and they know how long each game was in every year it was played, the amount of time, the amount of penalties, the amount of yardage, the amount of rushing yardage, the yards per carry, yards per completion. All that is studied very thoroughly by people who are a lot smarter than I am. So, I mean, I don't really know. I'm just trying to get our team ready for Buffalo.
"I'm not trying to solve all the world's problems in the passing game. I'm just trying to solve ours against Buffalo."
And he was asked again.
"It's a great story," said Belichick. "The last time I watched Marino throw, I don't know when that was. I'm just trying to concentrate on Buffalo."
When another reporter pressed the issue and told him the game is different now than it was when Marino played, Belichick said, "If that's what you want to write, go ahead."
"I'm just trying to get ready for Buffalo," added Belichick. "I'm not trying to analyze the passing game for the last 20 years. That's for people a lot smarter than me, like you guys."