Countless would-be doctors made their own diagnosis of Tom Brady's fingers when shots of the Patriots quarterback's hand circulated online and on television Sunday afternoon. In zoomed-in photographs and stills, Brady's right hand appeared to be swollen, which, it could be deduced by wannabe MDs, might help to explain his recent inaccuracy.
On Monday morning, Brady told WEEI's Dennis and Callahan Show that he feels "great" regardless of what's happening with his throwing hand.
"I'm never going to get into how I feel and bumps and bruises, but I feel great," Brady said. "I feel great. For this time of year, I mean, I feel exceptional."
Brady went 13-for-22 for 116 yards, a touchdown and an interception in New England's 27-17 win over the Dolphins at Gillette Stadium. Though Brady threw for just 25 yards in the first half, he led the Patriots to put up 24 unanswered points in the second half, which is the most New England has scored in the third and fourth quarters this season.
“I don’t have anything that affects anything what I’m doing out on the field. Whatever it is, our lack of play on our offense is more of a lack of execution than anything else. We’ll focus on that this week and try to go out there and try to get to 7-2. I know it hasn’t been perfect, and there’s a lot of things that we need to do better. But at the same time, we’re in a pretty good position in our division. We’ve just got to go out there and be able to try to see if we can make a lot of improvements here in the second half of the year.”
As has become a weekly ritual this season for Brady, he praised the Patriots defense for its work against Miami. Though the Dolphins jumped out to a 14-0 lead, New England pressured quarterback Ryan Tannehill throughout the second half and held his offense scoreless for the final 30 minutes.
The offense will eventually get up to speed, Brady insisted.
"Our defense is playing great . . . Offensively we can play a lot better," he said. "We've seen us in practice do things right so that's the real positive is that you know we're capable of it. It just hasn't really happened yet.
"At some point it's going to. I'm really confident that at some point we're going to be offensively the type of team that we think can be and that will really complement the way our defense is playing, and we can be the type of team that plays against the best teams and can compete against the best teams and go out there and win tough games."
With a win on Sunday to move the Patriots to 6-2, Brady explained that the offense feels as though it's slowly getting to where it wants to be. The way the team has functioned as a whole -- offense, defense, special teams -- actually reminds him of the teams he played on earlier in his career.
"The most important thing is winning, period," he said. "There’s different ways to do it. Probably over the first half of my career it was a lot of defensive football. We really weren’t great on offense. Situationally we were pretty good. We found ways to win when we needed to. Probably the second half of my career was a lot of offensive football, putting up a lot of points and yards. Defensively that wasn’t — I’d say our offense was our strength.
“Who knows what it’s going to be every year? Every year it ends up being a little bit different. Our defense is playing great football. Offensively, we can play a lot better. We’ve seen us in practice do things right. That’s the real positive, is that you know we’re capable of it, it just really hasn’t happened yet. And some point it’s going to. I’m real confident that at some point we’re offensively going to be the type of team that we think we can be. That will really complement the way our defense is playing. We can be the type of team that plays against the best teams and can compete against the best teams, and go out there and win tough games.”