Brady will take the wins however they come

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Brady will take the wins however they come

FOXBORO -- New England's 29-26 overtime win over the Jets was ugly. No doubt about that.
But the Patriots don't really care.
"The winning is important because youve only got 16 opportunities," Tom Brady said Wednesday. "You can play really well for 58 minutes and then not play well for two minutes and thats the game. So the important thing is the win or the loss."
More importantly, the Patriots don't really care if you care.
"Whether the fans appreciate that or not, thats not really our concern," Brady continued. "Were trying to win every week, but whether you lose by 1 or 30, or win by 1 or 30, the record is the same. And really, it doesnt have any bearing on the next week either."
The quarterback isn't saying last Sunday's game didn't have problems. In the same press conference he talked about how the team will always identity areas of its play that need improvement. Fourth-quarter offense? Yeah, that's something that has to get better. The secondary's continued surrender of 20-plus yard plays? That needs fixing, too.
But working things out doesn't mean twisting the screws of last week's mistakes.
"Part of the mental toughness is putting what happened behind and moving forward to next week without wasting any time or energy spent thinking about last week and using all your energy to move onto the following week so you can be at your best that week" he said. "Thats how you string wins together. That's why you dont win one, lose one, win one, lose one, because at the end of the day, you're mediocre and you're watching all the good teams play. The good teams win, win, win, win, win."So maybe squeaking a three-point victory over a vulnerable Jets team didn't make the fans feel good. Maybe more flaws were exposed. For the Patriots, who've lost more close games than they've won this season, the walk off the field and into the locker room was a little piece of heaven."Thats a great part of the week," Brady smiled. "Probably the four minutes that you get to enjoy it after the game until you start thinking about the next game. So thats part of the marathon part of the football season. Its a game of attrition and its for the mentally strong and its for the mentally tough and the physically tough. That's where the good teams begin to separate themselves."
Talent aside, is this team mature enough to flex the kind of mental toughness Brady talked about? It's been noted that the 2012 opening day roster is the youngest ever put together in Bill Belichick's tenure. It can't be easy for players with little NFL experience to quickly master the reactionary aspect of their competitiveness.
But that's where old Patriots pros can step in. It happened for Brady in the past.
"I think I had a lot of great examples and mentors when I was a younger player, of guys that could put good games past them, could put bad games past them and you move forward as a team. We have a relatively young team. We have some great captains; we have some great veteran leadership that really has to carry the torch and say, No, guys, this is what we need to do. This is how we have to move on.
"The better the veteran leadership is, the better the younger guys understand what they need to do. And they do their job and you do your job and everyone is doing their jobs and you all move forward with hopefully winning games."

Young getting on floor more for Celtics, including key fourth-quarter stints

Young getting on floor more for Celtics, including key fourth-quarter stints

SOUTHFIELD, Mich. – For most of his life, basketball has come easy to James Young.
 
So, the idea that in training camp he wasn’t just fighting to get playing time but also to stay in the NBA, was a jarring eye-opener.
 
To Young’s credit, he rose to the challenge and beat out R.J. Hunter for the Celtics' final roster spot.
 
And while Young’s playing time has been sporadic, he has done a much better job of maximizing his opportunities.
 
So, as the Celtics roll into Detroit to face the Pistons, Young finds himself playing his best basketball as a pro, good enough to make coach Brad Stevens not hesitate to put him in the game in the fourth quarter of a close matchup.
 
“It’s exciting to come back home,” Young, who grew up in nearby Rochester Hills, Mich., told CSNNE.com. “A lot of my family will be there. I’m not thinking about me. I’m just trying to do what I can to help the team.”
 
And lately, he’s getting an opportunity to do just that beyond being someone who helps in practice.
 
We saw that in the 107-97 loss at Toronto on Friday. Young came off the bench to play four minutes, 36 seconds in the fourth quarter with only two other Celtics reserves, Marcus Smart (8:39) and Jonas Jerebko (5:10) seeing more action down the stretch.
 
“It means a lot,” Young said. “He’s starting to trust me a little bit more. That’s a good thing. I’m just trying to do little things; rebound, get defensive stops and score when I get a chance.”
 
The fact that his scoring is just starting to take shape helps shed some light on why he has been buried so deep on the Celtics bench.
 
For his first couple seasons, Young seemed a hesitant shooter physically overwhelmed by opponents too strong for him to defend as well as too physical for him to limit their effectiveness.
 
But this season, he has done a better job at holding his own as a defender while making himself an available scoring option who can play off his teammates.
 
Young is averaging just 2.9 points per game this season, but he’s shooting a career-high 48.9 percent from the field and 41.7 percent on 3’s, which is also a career-high.
 
Getting on the floor more often has in many ways provided yet another boost of confidence to Young.
 
“I’m getting used to the flow of the game playing more consistently,” Young said. “I know what to do. It’s slowing up a little more and it’s getting easier.”
 

Sanu on Patriots' Super Bowl comeback: Lady Gaga's long halftime hurt Falcons

Sanu on Patriots' Super Bowl comeback: Lady Gaga's long halftime hurt Falcons

Three weeks removed from his team blowing a 25-point, second-half lead in the Super Bowl, Mohamed Sanu offered a possible explanation for the Atlanta Falcons losing their edge against the Patriots.

Lady Gaga.

More specifically, it was the half-hour-plus halftime show that interrupted the Falcons' rhythm, the receiver said Friday on the NFL Network's "Good Morning Football."

“Usually, halftime is only like 15 minutes, and when you’re not on the field for like an hour, it’s just like going to work out, like a great workout, and you go sit on the couch for an hour and then try to start working out again,” Sanu said.

Sanu was asked if the delay was something you can simulate in practice. 

"It's really the energy [you can't duplicate]," he said. "I don't know if you can simulate something like that. That was my first time experiencing something like that."

Patriots coach Bill Belichick did simulate it. In his Super Bowl practices, he had his team take long breaks in the middle.

Sanu also addressed the Falcons' pass-first play-calling that didn't eat up clock while the Patriots came back.

"The thought [that they weren't running the ball more] crossed your mind, but as a player, you're going to do what the coach [Dan Quinn] wants you to do." Sanu said. "He's called plays like that all the time."