New England Patriots WR Danny Amendola joined ESPN the other day to discuss his injury recovery, as well as answer questions about the team and the offseason.
"I feel really good,” Amendola said. “I had a couple minor procedures done after the season. Everybody knows how long the season can be. I wanted to go into next season feeling as fresh and ready as I can.”
Amendola is recovering from a knee and ankle injuries and could potentially start the season on the Physically Unable to Perform list. The Patriots will likely look to free agent signing Chris Hogan to take over if Amendola is unable to play, and will also leverage tight end Martellus Bennett to play heavier snaps.
The Patriots wide receiver also shared a story about one of his first interactions with QB Tom Brady that led to a broken ping pong paddle.
“It was my first week in the building,” Amendola said, via MassLive. “[Brady] wanted to play some ping-ping. I didn't really know how to go about it. I know I was better than him. I didn't want to beat him too bad because I wanted him to throw me the ball.
"I knew I was better. Needless to say, his competitive nature unleashed a broken paddle by the end of it. It the reason why we love him, and the reason why he's the best quarterback."
After a slow start to his Patriots career, Amendola is now Brady’s 3rd favorite target behind WR Julian Edelman and TE Rob Gronkowski. I would expect that Brady still holds that ping pong match against Amendola, but that Amendola’s many circus catches have alleviated some of the animosity.
Amendola also echoed the general teamwide sentiments regarding back-up QB Jimmy Garoppolo and his ability in case Brady is suspended for the first four games of the season.
"[Garoppolo is] a great player," Amendola said. "He's been in the system a couple of years now and he's learned a lot. He's picked up everything that Tom has taught him and then also what Coach [Bill] Belichick has to offer him. So we're all excited to see where he goes and see what the future holds for him."
I’m glad to see that Amendola is recovering nicely and hope to see him on the field in short time.