Belichick says Pats need to keep 'eye on target'


Belichick says Pats need to keep 'eye on target'

By Tom E. Curran

Have a holly, jolly Christmas . . . just don't let it get in the way of the damn football game. So sayeth Bill Belichick - though not in as many words - during a conference call Tuesday afternoon. Asked how hard it is to keep young players focused when the chaos of Christmas and the holidays are swirling, Belichick said,"I think thats important for every person, every member of the organization, not just the young players, but all of us. To maintain our focus, keep our eye on the target, and not worry about anything but Buffalo. That's really all there is right now. Take everything else, and push it to the side a little bit, and try to make sure we do a good job on our preparation, and make sure we don't take anything for granted. Do all the little things that we need to do, and put all our energy and emphasis into that."The Bills are 4-11 and the threat is there that they won't capture the attention of the Patriots. Kinda the way a 2-11 Dolphins team didn't get the 12-1 Patriots' best shot back in 2004. The result? A 29-28 loss. "We all can potentially be distracted," Belichick added. "Everybody's job is important. I think that's a message for everybody this week.What has experience taught him, in dealing with the process? Basically, to treat this holiday week like every other week."Last week is no different than this week," Belichick said. "This week is no different than last week or next week. We still need to put everything we have into each game, take advantage of our opportunities, whether it's film study, meetings, walkthroughs, practice . . . and just maximize that."

Tom E. Curran can be reached at Follow Tom on Twitter at http:twitter.comtomecurran

Affleck offers passionate Brady defense when asked about Deflategate


Affleck offers passionate Brady defense when asked about Deflategate

When the topic of Deflategate was broached on HBO's Any Given Wednesday with Bill Simmons, which debuted this week, Ben Affleck became all kinds of fired up.

"What they did was suspend Tom Brady for four days for not giving them his [expletive] cellphone," Affleck said. "I would never give an organization as leak-prone as the NFL my [expletive] cellphone . . . so you can just look through my emails and listen to my voicemails?"

Affleck grew up in Cambridge, Mass. and is a passionate Patriots fan. He made no attempts to hide his fandom, and his appreciation for Brady, as he and Simmons (also a Patriots fan) discussed the football-deflation controversy that has now lasted well over a year. 

Affleck, who said he would want to cast himself as Brady if ever a Deflategate movie was made, harped on the fact that the league wanted Brady to turn over his phone. 

"Maybe Tom Brady is so [expletive] classy and such a [expletive] gentleman," Affleck said, "that he doesn’t want people to know that he may have reflected on his real opinion on some of his co-workers."

Brady is waiting for the Second Circuit to make a decision as to whether or not it will rehear his case against the NFL. Earlier this offseason, the Second Circuit reinstated Brady's four-game suspension issued by the league when a three-judge panel ruled in favor of the NFL, 2-1. 

Pro Football Talk wrote on Thursday that a decision from the Second Circuit could come at any time. If the rehearding request is denied, Brady could then take the case to the Supreme Court. Should the Second Circuit grant Brady a rehearing, his suspension would be delaed until the court reached a decision. In that case, Brady could potentially play the entire 2016 season before a decision came to pass. 

Brady posts high school essay to Facebook on living in his sisters' shadow


Brady posts high school essay to Facebook on living in his sisters' shadow

Tom Brady wasn't always the most famous person in his family. Growing up, his sisters were the accomplished athletes in the household. 

For his latest Throwback Thursday style Facebook post, Brady published a pair of photos of an old high school essay that he wrote in the fall of his senior year in 1994. It was titled "The way my sisters influenced me."

I found an essay I wrote in 1994... I love my big sisters! #tbt. Thanks for the good grade Mr Stark!

Posted by Tom Brady on Thursday, June 23, 2016

In it, he discusses some of the difficulties of growing up with three older sisters and no brothers. Because Maureen, Julie and Nancy Brady had achieved so much in softball, basketball and soccer, Brady -- or "Tommy," as he signed his paper -- had trouble getting noticed. 

Of course, it wouldn't be long before Brady was headed from San Mateo, California to Ann Arbor, Michigan in order to play football for the Wolverines. He probably had no trouble garnering attention by then. Still, it's funny to read about how he felt overlooked in his youth. 

He closed the essay explaining that he knew his sisters would always provide him support throughout his life, adding, "hopefully, just maybe, one day people will walk up to them and say, 'Aren't you Tommy's sister?' or 'Hey where is your brother?' Maybe . . . "

If the Brady sisters didn't get those kinds of comments by the time the baby of the family was given an 'A' for his English assignment, it probably didn't take long before they did. About seven years later, he took over as the starting quarterback of the Patriots.