FOXBORO -- Tom Brady's weekly "Meet the Press" turn on Wednesdays serves a bigger purpose than just filling airtime, bandwidth and column inches. It is an opportunity for the team's most important player to set the agenda for his teammates. On this Wednesday, a semi-terse Brady stepped to the podium and made it very clear how he's treating Sunday's game in Philly. Like a playoff game. "We're putting it all into this week," Brady said in his opening remarks. "We got a lot on the line. It's a very good team. There's skill at every position. Going on the road and trying to win a tough game on the road at the most important time of the year. It says a lot about (us as a team)."The Patriotshave rebounded fromconsecutive losses to the Giants and Steelers with wins overthe Jets and Chiefs. They hold a two-game lead in the AFC East over the Jets and Bills and -- stepping into a non-conference game -- they actually have some breathing room. But Brady's tone registered urgency. I asked him why. "It's a big week for us," he repeated. "We need to play really well. Certainly better than we played the last few weeks. There's a lot of people on our team and our offense that have taken the challenge that our coach has given us and we're gonna go out there and try to play our best and I think we need to do that."The results are there for the Patriots, but the product is not as polished as it needs to be. Brady has said that over and over again this year. And he realizes that his offense is still trying to establish what it does consistently well as the calendar flips to December. "This is the time of year where it's most important," Brady said. "There's not a lot of games left so when you play a tough team on the road that came off one of the biggest games of their season, you've got everything you could ask for so we'll try to play our best."
Isaiah Thomas appears to be channeling the New England Patriots' "No days off" slogan.
The Boston Celtics guard spent Friday night, in the middle of the NBA offseason, studying film. He was up past midnight to take a look at Boston Celtics' game tape, according to ESPN.com's Chris Foresberg, who posted a picture on Twitter of Thomas hard at work.
How's Isaiah Thomas spending his offseason? Devouring game film at midnight on a Friday in July. pic.twitter.com/Y9PrtHGor6— Chris Forsberg (@ESPNForsberg) July 22, 2017
Thomas finished the 2016-17 season with 28.9 points per game, 5.9 assists and 2.7 rebounds in 33.8 minutes. He helped the Celtics earn the NBA Eastern Conference's No. 1 seed, and contributed a handful of clutch performances as Boston charged to the Eastern Conference finals against the Cleveland Cavaliers, who won the series, 4-1.
Celtics forward Jaylen Brown joined in the Drive-By Dunk Challenge and tweeted a video that captured his thunderous slam.
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We're thinking that's not a regulation height rim.
And the All-Star dunk contest next year might have to be sanctioned by NASCAR.