Tom Brady the Adventurer

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Tom Brady the Adventurer

And we were worried about the Summer of Gronk.

Have you seen the photos of Tom Brady cliff jumping last week in Costa Rica!? Good God, man. Its not worth it. Think of the team. Think of the fans. Think of the children!

Think of . . . eh, whatever.

In all seriousness, Bradys Costa Rican adventure looked like a pretty awesome time. I also appreciate that the cameras caught him flying through the air like a bad ass, as opposed to yelling Weeee! on his way down a childrens water slide like last year.

But most of all, back to present time, its just great to see Brady back in camp, looking all healthy and Brady-like and ready to lead the Pats for a 12th straight season. Even after all these years, hes still the single greatest thing about being a sports fan in this town, and will be until the day he hangs them up (unless he goes bonkers and starts posting extreme political opinions on his Facebook fan page.)

But that love for Brady is also why I hate watching him this time of year. Of course, there are exceptions. Im OK with a few skeleton drills. I never get sick of watching him fade back against an invisible defense and hit a receiver in stride. But once you get to real football. Whether its an inter-squad scrimmage, a joint practice with the Saints, or even worse, the pre-season. Im all set. Id rather fit Brady for a protective bubble and glue his ass to the bench than risk a stupid injury. Once the pre-season starts, Im literally watching every offensive play through one eye.

Honestly, though. How much does he really need to play between now and Week 1? Whats the difference? He already has a rhythm and relationship with every receiver on the roster (Welker, Branch, Gronk, Hernandez, Stallworth, Gaffney, Edelman, Slater) but Lloyd, and the two of them can work that out in practice. After a full season of trying to connect with Ochocinco, Brandon Lloyd will be a breeze for Brady. They're already in a good place.

Do they really need to risk him rolling an ankle, smacking his hand on a helmet, or some over-anxious, undrafted free agent busting through the line and hitting him at the knee?

No, they don't. But I figure they will.

Still, I'd rather Tom Brady jump off 10 cliffs in Costa Rica than take 10 snaps in the pre-season. I'd even excuse him for the occasional: "Weeeee!"

Rich can be reached at rlevine@comcastsportsnet.com. Follow Rich on Twitter at http:twitter.comrich_levine

Ravens’ Suggs submits half-hearted effort at Brady snub

Ravens’ Suggs submits half-hearted effort at Brady snub

Terrell Suggs keeps doing his best to pump air into his one-sided “feud” with Tom Brady.

Ever since Brady begged for a flag on Suggs after a benign hit back in 2009, Suggs has made it his mission to speak truth to the perceived power of Brady.

“Everyone just seems to worship the guy so much,” he once said. “Not me, though.”

So, Suggs has called basically derided Brady as a crybaby and occasionally called into question the validity of the Patriots championships.

It’s clearly all for show. When Deflategate was at its height in June of 2015, Suggs said of Brady, “The guy is a winner. He’s won with whatever kind of personnel that he’s had. So I don’t think [Deflategate] really tarnished it … Everybody needs something to write about and needs something to talk about. It’s always something. I’m leaving that alone.”

This week, Suggs smirkingly refused to use Brady’s name when discussing the Patriots leading up to Monday night’s game.

Asked about Brady earning his 201st win as an NFL starter, Suggs said, "He's pretty good. Like I said, wins are wins and numbers are numbers. Numbers don't lie. He's pretty good."

Suggs went on, avoiding Brady’s name. It’s something he’s done in the past for whatever reason. But he’s also been complimentary of the Patriots and Brady as well, saying that, when it’s done, there will be three quarterbacks in the conversation for best-ever: Montana, Unitas and Brady. 

The only time Brady’s verbally stepped out against Suggs and the Ravens is in response to their barbs. In 2010, Brady stated that the Ravens, “Talk a lot for beating us once in nine years.”

Brady also chastised Ravens coach John Harbaugh – now there’s a guy who whines! – after the 2014 AFC Divisional Playoff Game when the Patriots snookered the Ravens with intricate formations. That’s about it for return fire.

 

One-sided feud: Brady praises Suggs for playmaking, instincts

One-sided feud: Brady praises Suggs for playmaking, instincts

FOXBORO -- Terrell Suggs kept up what has been a years-long campaign to mock Tom Brady's public perception by refusing to say Brady's name this week. 

Outside of a quick, "Talk a lot for beating us once in nine years" comment back in 2010, Brady has typically let the feud be one-sided. That continued on this week when Brady said the Ravens edge defender looked as good as ever during a Westwood One radio interview.

He continued his praise of Suggs during a press conference Thursday.

"I think every year, he's had pretty major injuries, and he comes back and looks like he didn't miss a beat," Brady said. "It's his 14th year, he's been a great player for as long as he's been in the league. I think he does a lot of things really well.

"He's got all the rush moves, he actually drops into coverage, he bats down balls, he butchers the tight ends coming off the line of scrimmage. He's really a playmaker for their team. It's not just sacking the quarterback, probably like most defensive ends. He makes plays in a lot of ways. I've seen him intercept slip screens, jumping up and picking [Ben] Roethlisberger off going the other way. 

"I think he has great instincts. He definitely plays with his instincts. If he feels like the ball's going to go inside, he rips inside and tries to take it away even though that's not his assignment. I think 99 percent of the time, the ball goes inside. I think he just has great instincts for what he's doing.

"You can't ever really count on the same thing from him. I think you just try to play him straight up and see what he's going to do because I think he makes a lot of really good decisions out there and he makes a lot of plays."

Brady didn't say Suggs' name during the course of his answer, but he left no doubt that there's a level of respect there for his game. 

I think all these games are kind of the same. I just look at the opp and look at what they do. The only thing that matters is what we do this week of practice and in the game. I think you just try to put everything aside and, whether it was that or whether it was playoff game a couple years ago, whether it was the rs game a couple years ago or C games, none of those really nmatter. It's really going to be about what this team does this week and like I said, coach will try to put a lot of urgerncy on that. We understand that. We know we're facing a team that's 7-5, their at the top of their division. They have a lot of conf in what they do and wso do we. It's going to be a good, tough matchup.