Tom Brady and his New England Patriots dropped the final two games of the regular season. However, a record of 12-4 was good enough for their 12th AFC East title in 13 years and sixth consecutive first-round playoff bye.
Brady, 38, intends to use the bye week to get his troublesome ankle treated. The injury occurred during the loss to Dolphins when Marcus Cannon grabbed Ndamukong Suh’s facemask, forcing the defensive lineman to fall onto the quarterback’s right leg. As a result of the nasty second quarter play, Brady suffered a sprained ankle, as confirmed by a post-game MRI.
Tom Brady: The Warrior
If anything, Tom Brady knows how to play through injuries. During Super Bowl XXXVI, against the St. Louis Rams, Brady endured through a sprained ankle and led the Patriots to the championship. Again, during Super Bowl XLII against the New York Giants, Brady battled through a series of injuries.
“I’ve had worse (injuries). I’ve had plenty of worse injuries than this one. Suh’s such a big guy. He just came down on the back of me and… 300 pounds, he just collapses the back of your leg, there’s going to be some residual damage from that,” said the reigning Superbowl MVP, who has also missed play time due to an injury only once during his illustrious career – the season-ending knee injury in Week 1 of 2008.
During the course of the game, Brady threw only 21 passes for a season-low 134 yards. The 20-10 defeat to Miami marked Pats’ fourth loss in six games, after beginning the season 10-0. “Our level of consistency hasn’t really been up to the standards that we need it to be. This time of year is about how you play, not who you play or where you play or any of that. It’s how you play. Hopefully we’ve learned some lessons over the past couple of weeks, and we can play more Patriot-like football,” said Brady.
Patriots have other injuries to worry about. Receiver Julian Edelman, who hasn’t played a game since Week 10, is still battling with a broken foot. Both Sebastien Vollmer and Dont’a Hightower missed the season finale. Also, RBs LeGarrette Blount and Dion Lewis have been ruled out for the season. “A lot of guys are banged up. So it’s just part of football season.”
So will Tom Brady lead the Patriots to their fifth championship come Super Bowl 50?