Brady not playing Jets games until Sunday

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Brady not playing Jets games until Sunday

By Mary Paoletti
CSNNE.com Staff Reporter Follow @mary_paoletti
FOXBORO Tom Brady is not in the mood this week.

The hype, the politics, and the mind games that Jets week comes packaged in: Brady's not interested. When he stepped to the podium Wednesday the force field was immediately activated.

Right out of the gate, he was asked about New England's 2010 playoff loss to Rex Ryan's crew. Does an early postseason exit -- at home, no less -- serve as extra motivation for this October match up?

"That was a long time ago, so that game doesn't have much bearing on this week," he said evenly. "We're a different team."

And that was the end of that.

According to the Patriots quarterback, this is a brand new chapter in a very old book. Anything beyond the Xs and Os is a distraction. It's superfluous -- not even amusing. Brady is settling in for a huge divisional game, one that's impossible to predict based on the past. The Jets' current 2-2 record, one that features back-to-back losses to the Bills and Ravens, means nothing to the Patriots.

"They're a tough team, very physical," Brady said. "They lead the league in a bunch of defensive categories. They're very challenging to play. They have been since -- it's always the Jets -- since I got here 10 years, 12 years ago. It's a fun game to be a part of. I hope we go out there and play better than the last time we played them."

New England lost last season's playoff bout with the Jets, 28-21. It gave Ryan's team the series edge for the year after a regular season split. And there was some sense in the result; New York was the overall better team last season.

But a few things have changed. The Jets are ranked No. 25 in total offense with 308.0 yards per game compared to New England's gaudy 507.5. Quarterback Mark Sanchez's 55.1 completion percentage (81-for-147) is well below the fold (Brady is 109-for-163, 66.9 percent). The Patriots also have a 13 to 6 touchdown advantage.

Brady: Don't care. Don't care. Don't care.

"They were good last year, they're good this year, they were good two years ago," he said. "I think as long as Rex is coaching that team, they're going to have a good defense. They've got a lot of good defensive players: David Harris and Bart Scott, good front, corners who can cover, safeties . . . it's a good team."

Even after they lost in Baltimore last week, 34-17? Yup.

"They still played pretty well defensively," Brady said. "I don't think Flacco threw for 50 percent. The Ravens had a bunch of scores -- defensive scores -- but that doesn't really affect me any. We're preparing for a very good defense; tough, physical style that's good in pass coverage. They lead the league in first down defense. They lead the league in third down defense. They're one of the best we play all year."

Flacco actually threw for 32 percent on 10-for-31 passing. It was ugly. As Brady mentioned, the Ravens scored, but got touchdowns on two fumble returns and a pick. The Jets defense isn't getting lucky on interceptions with a 325-pound tackle throwing up his hands at the right time, they're getting the plays from the guys expected to make them: linebackers Josh Mauga and David Harris each have one, safety Eric Smith has one, shutdown cornerback Darelle Revis has one, and his partner in crime, Antonio Cromartie, has two.

And Cromartie can't wait to visit New England.

He's expressed a vehement dislike for Brady in the past and set his sights on the Patriots QB while still in Baltimore. Brady is wary of the threat because he respects the talent.

"Cromartie's very good. Excellent player," Brady said. "They have two very good corners. They've got a bunch of good corners, actually. The two that are out there regularly on defense are very good -- both fast, both physical. They play well at the line of scrimmage. They're very disruptive. They lead the league in pass defense."

What Brady doesn't respect is the melodrama. As soon as the questions turned to the off-field games, to Cromartie's insults and yammering, he clammed up.

"I don't care what he says about me. I really don't."

The rest of the presser was lost. Even questions about game planning couldn't bring Brady out of his mood.

On adjusting to Revis? "We kind of just call our plays and wherever he lines up, he lines up on them. If a guy gets open, he gets the ball as we've shown, and if he doesn't, somebody else gets the ball.

On how much he's using receiver Wes Welker? "You throw to the open guy. If he's open, he'll get it. If he's not, someone else will get it. He's done a good job of getting open."

A third question about Cromartie's criticisms was the death blow.

"I really don't care what he says," Brady said. He gave a curt thanks and walked out.

To think the lack of engagement indicates a lack of bloodlust for the rivalry is all wrong. It's because this week is tremendously important to Tom Brady and the Patriots that they've put blinders on.The focus is ahead, it's on the future. And it's on the field.

Mary Paoletti can be reached at mpaoletti@comcastsportsnet.com. Follow Mary on Twitter at http:twitter.comMary_Paoletti

Curran: McDaniels staying with Pats shouldn't be a shocker

Curran: McDaniels staying with Pats shouldn't be a shocker

For weeks the speculation regarding Josh McDaniels wasn't a matter of "if" but "when."

But while national media had McDaniels signed, sealed and delivered to multiple landing spots, the proposition that he'd leave at all was never a likelihood. 

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The Rams weren't attractive to him from the outset. Jacksonville didn't excite him, either. And on Monday, he passed on the 49ers opportunity. 

The lure of a blank slate in San Fran at quarterback and GM didn't outpace the uncertainty of going cross-country to work for a seemingly dysfunctional franchise that's cycled rapidly through coaches and has an unrealistic sense that it's a long, long way removed from its glory days, the only remnant remaining from that being perhaps the logo on the helmet. 

With four kids and a job McDaniels considers one of the 10 best on coaching -- head man or no -- he will stay on as the Patriots' offensive coordinator.

"I was really impressed with (Niners owner) Jed York and (team executive) Paraag Marathe . . . and the people that came from the 49ers organization," McDaniels said on a conference call this morning. "They did a great job with their presentation. Humbled to be included in that process. At this time it's just best for my family and myself to remain here in New England and focus on this year's playoffs and finish out the year however it turns out."

The same faulty speculative reasoning that had McDaniels as good as gone from the Patriots will move on undeterred today and surmise that McDaniels is staying with the Patriots because he knows, or has been promised, that he'll receive the head coaching job when Bill Belichick steps aside. 

While the Kraft family certainly thinks highly of McDaniels and that could come to pass, anyone tapping their foot and checking their watch waiting for Belichick to step down is in for a long wait. He's showing no signs of wrapping it up and, while I haven't been told directly McDaniels isn't the automatic successor, he wouldn't be taking interviews at all if he were assured that. 

What will be interesting to see is whether interest remains high in him for other jobs or the perception that he's never going to leave means teams don't bother to ask. San Fran obviously had its heart set on McDaniels. Even though Nick Caserio passed on the chance to interview with the Niners for their open GM job, the team did talk to Louis Riddick about the spot. He and McDaniels have high regard for each other. 

Between McDaniels, Caserio and defensive coordinator Matt Patricia, the people closest to Belichick on the coaching flow chart all had chances to go somewhere else and all passed on the chance. It's another example of not why the Patriots are good but why they remain good. Stability. 
 

McDaniels: 'Best for my family and myself' to remain with Patriots

McDaniels: 'Best for my family and myself' to remain with Patriots

Josh McDaniels will be staying put in New England, he said on Monday, because that's what's best for him and his family at this point in time. 

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The Patriots offensive coordinator was a front-runner for the open head-coaching job in San Francisco but has removed his name from consideration.

"I was really impressed with [Niners owner and CEO] Jed York and [Chief Strategy Officer and EVP of Football Operations] Praag [Marathe] and [Director of Football Administration and Analytics] Brian [Hampton] and the people that came from the 49ers organization. They did a great job with their presentation. Again, humbled to be included in that process.

"At this time it's just best for my family and myself to remain here in New England and focus on this year's playoffs and finish out the year however it turns out."

Next season will be McDaniels' sixth full season back with the Patriots since returning during the playoffs of the 2011 season.

"I've always said how grateful I am to have this opportunity to work here with Mr. Kraft and his family, and coach under Bill with a lot of great guys on our staff, and to have the privilege to get to work with the players that we work with each day," McDaniels said. "It's a great opportunity. I'm very thankful to be here, and very much looking forward to this week against Pittsburgh."