Mike Reiss highlights Tom Brady's comments from his interview with Fran Charles and Steve Mariucci of NFL Network.
What does winning Offensive Player of the Year mean to you?
"I appreciate it. I think obviously we had a great regular season as a team, but we just didn’t really take advantage of our opportunity there in the month of January. The two teams that are there playing this week certainly have earned it. They should be very proud. It’s going to be a great game."
Early in the season, the Patriots traded away Randy Moss and conventional wisdom was that you would no longer be able to stretch the field. But you finished up the [regular] season beautifully, going the last 11 [regular-season] games without throwing an interception. What was the difference for you during the second half of the season, which allowed the Patriots offense to take off?
"It’s definitely a collective effort by the group of skill players that we have and the offensive line. I think when you trade away a talent like that, a guy who is a first-ballot Hall of Famer, other guys have to step in and do their job and fill the void – a big void [left] by a great player. BenJarvus [Green-Ellis] rushed for 1,000 yards. Danny Woodhead made up for the loss of Kevin Faulk. Kevin was one of the best players that we’ve ever had on the team; Danny stepped in and played a great role for us. The group of receivers, with Deion [Branch] and Wes [Welker], and Julian Edelman and Brandon Tate, they did an incredible job, really committing themselves to the passing game -- that we were going to do whatever we needed to do to get the ball in the end zone. Obviously, the tight end position, with two young tight ends – Aaron Hernandez and Rob Gronkowski, and with Alge [Crumpler], we had a great group of skill players. It was a lot of fun each week trying to find different ways to utilize all of those guys so that we can go into the game feeling really good, feeling prepared, with the game-plan [and] understanding that if we just went out and executed well that we were going to score some points."
Mike Reiss reports Pittsburgh center Maurkice Pouncey thought there was a good chance the Patriots would select him in the Draft, but the Steelers took him before they had a chance. He met with the Pats head coach three times and offers this take on Bill Belichick:
"He was a joking-around kind of dude," he said. "I don't know why everybody takes him so seriously."
- Tom Brady was named the AP Offensive Player of the Year for the second time in the last four seasons. The record-setting quarterback, who had a string of 355 passes without being intercepted, received 21 votes.
- NFL Network: 2010 AP Offensive Player of the Year. (8.06 min. video)
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- Ron Borges reports Tom Brady was named the league's top offensive player for the second time in four years.
- Christopher Price reports Tom Brady acknowledges he underwent surgery on his right foot.
- Tom E. Curran continues his Dallas Diary: Frozen on Media Day.
- Ian Rapoport shares some of the strangeness that is Super Bowl Media Day.
- Tom E. Curran gives us five Super things to think about from Dallas.
- Ian Rapoport notes Dom Capers never instilled his blitz-happy, imaginative ways on the Patriots because he was only there to coach the secondary.
- Michael Hurley says Ben Roethlisberger can't reach Tom Brady's level, but he's carving out his own legacy.
- Shalise Manza Young notes Curtis Martin feels the Patriots' organization was the 'best foundation I could have had as an NFL player."
- Ian Rapoport meets up with Chad Ochocinco who says his tweets weren't intended to flirt with the Patriots, but just a way to say "hello" to a respected opponent.
- Tom E. Curran reports Bengals WR Chad Ochocinco theorizes that if he ever played for the Patriots, Belichick would allow him to be himself.
- Mike Reiss focuses on the future of each position: Inside Linebackers.
- WEEI scouts out potential Patriots: WR Jeff Maehl (Oregon)
- WEEI mocks the Draft, Take 2: DE?OLB Ryan Kerrigan (Purdue) at 17, and OT Gabe Carimi (Wisconsin) at 28.
- Jeff Howe thinks Clemson DE Da'Quan Bowers leads the way among Patriots top 10 Draft picks.
- Tim Graham (ESPN) No kidding: Tom Brady named top O player.
- Tim Graham (ESPN) Six from AFC East make PFW's 'Super 50'.
- Tim Graham (ESPN) Time for an AFC East mockwave.
- Peter King (SI) MMQB Tuesday Edition: Mailbag.
- Mac Engel (Star-Telegram) NFL needs to take good, long look at NHL.
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- Gil Brandt (NFL.com) Six crucial matchups serve as guide to Super Bowl XLV.
- Joe Fortenbaugh (Nat'l Football Post) The rundown from Media Day.