By: Ian Logue
Patriots fans finally got good news last night, with Peter King announcing during the halftime portion of the NFL’s season opener between the Vikings and Saints that quarterback Tom Brady had finally come to terms with New England on a new contract.
His new deal is for four years and reportedly worth $72-million, $48.5-million of which is guaranteed. The contract is expected to be approved by the league today.
Albert Breer breaks down the contract and feels that it all adds up to a worthwhile deal, as the team has now secured the most important player on their roster. He also points out that the QB has taken some hits over the years and had his fair share of injuries, yet he’s continue to battle through them and New England has remained among the NFL’s elite.
“This is a physical game,’’ Brady told the media Wednesday. “I’ve had four surgeries in eight years — my shoulder and my knee and my groin, and another one, too. But pretty much every other year you’re having a surgery. Some are major — all surgeries are major as far as I’m concerned now.
“You count your blessings when you come off the field. I think you have a new appreciation when you do come off the field, win or lose. You’re trying to win every time out, obviously. But I think you also pinch yourself every time you walk off the field healthy and say, ‘Man, at least I get a chance to go out next week and play also.’ ’’
Christopher Price of WEEI.com also takes a look at Brady’s new deal, and notes that “at first glance, it appears that this is a deal that will allow each side to claim a certain measure of victory.”
Mike Reiss of ESPNBoston.com writes that thankfully what must have been a surreal day for Brady at least ended on a good note.
Dan Shaughnessy takes an entertaining look at the coverage of yesterday’s accident, noting that Brady is the most famous New Englander of the 21st century and while most car accidents don’t always make the news, the amount of media coverage that went on yesterday shows what he obviously means to this region.
Former Patriot Troy Brown told NECN that he never had any doubt a deal would get done, and could certainly see Brady playing until he’s 40.
Glen Johnson of WFMZ.com reports that following Brady’s car accident yesterday morning Ludgero Rodrigues, who was the driver of the red minivan, was cited by police following the incident. According to the report he was cited for running the red light, but this was far from his first offense. He’s actually had his license suspended at least five times and he’s just 21-years old.
NECN reports that Rodrigues father was seriously injured in the crash, and is still in the hospital.
Glen Farley of the Patriots Ledger has an article this morning with his prediction for New England, and sees a nine win season in their future along with no playoff appearance this year.
If Farley is basing that off of his concern over New England’s defense, linebacker Jerod Mayo told NECN that they’re better than people think they are. Although he’s fine if people continue to doubt them, telling Tom Curran that they’re using all this talk as motivation.
Mark Farinella of the Attleboro Sun Chronicle has more from Mayo, with the young linebacker telling reporters that the Bengals present a tough challenge. They swept their division last year and have added even more players, so he knows they’ve got their work cut out for them.
Meanwhile the Boston Globe reports that after missing practice on Wednesday with an illness, wide receiver Randy Moss was back out on the field yesterday and reportedly took part in the team’s walkthrough.
Moss’ teammate, Fred Taylor, is excited for Sunday’s game and told the Boston Herald that opening day is like Christmas for him. The veteran is entering his 13th season, and is always motivated by the start of the season.
“I always get excited because you get the chance to compete for 60 full minutes against somebody that is trying to take their best shot at you,” said Taylor. “You want to give them your best shot, but I will always be motivated by Opening Day football.”
Joining Taylor in the excitement is also rookie tight end Rob Gronkowski, who is also looking forward to finally having the chance to play in a regular game after all the months of rookie minicamps, OTA’s, and then training camp. He also said the preparations for this week are different from anything he’s ever experienced.
“The preparation for this week is different than anything I’ve experienced in my whole life,” said Gronkowski. “In the NFL you prepare a lot harder and a lot longer with more film – a lot more studying.
“That’s the difference so far, and I’m real excited for the opening game. Of course the playbook is upgraded from (college) a lot; being at this level you have to learn a lot more details on how to do it and when to do it.”
And finally it appears that Bengals defensive end Antwan Odom appears to be on the verge of an unpaid vacation, after ProFootballTalk.com reports that the league is about to hit him with a four game suspension for testing positive for a banned substance. He’s reportedly going to appeal it, but according to the report suspensions not imposed by Tuesday won’t be imposed at all for the week in question, so it’s believed that Odom most likely will be playing on Sunday.
That’s it for this morning. Hope all of you have a good day and we’ll have more later on.