FOXBORO (CBS) — Tom Brady hates the Jets. He doesn’t say it anymore, not after all the controversy caused by when he does say so, but chances are his opinions haven’t changed about the Patriots’ division rival from New York.
Now, with a short week and very little time to prepare for Thursday night’s Thanksgiving matchup with the Jets, the quarterback is all business.
It won’t be easy to lead his offense without Rob Gronkowski, who broke his forearm last week and will likely be out for the next four to six weeks. Again though, with that short preparation time, Brady has no time to spare this week worrying about how Gronkowski is feeling, as evidenced by the following exchange on Tuesday:
Reporter: Have you had a chance to see or talk to Rob Gronkowski since yesterday?
Brady: Not much. I’ve been spending a lot of time on the Jets.
Reporter: Do you know if he’s in good spirits?
Brady: I haven’t been thinking about his spirits. I’ve been thinking about the Jets.
That is what Brady should be doing, as his 259 passing yards against the Jets made for his fourth-lowest total this season, and that’s with the benefit of tacking on 41 yards in overtime. The Patriots were fortunate to escape that late October meeting with an overtime victory.
Of course, Brady’s focus on the Jets doesn’t mean he won’t be missing Gronkowski, who is one of Brady’s favorite targets and is the most dynamic tight end in the sport.
“There’s only one Rob Gronkowski,” Brady said. “There’s only one of those in the league. The guys that are going to be in there playing that role – Visanthe [Shiancoe] and [Michael Hoomanawanui] and Daniel [Fells] – they have to go in there and do the best they can do. That’s why they’re on the team and that’s why we have 53 guys on the roster: so everybody can contribute at one point or another.”
Brady said that he hopes the rest of his teammates are following his lead and focusing on the task at hand this week.
“We’re just trying to prioritize our time — we don’t have much of it,” Brady said. “We have to leave [Wednesday]. Hopefully everyone is spending their time wisely, not playing video games and stuff like that, trying to understand our plan and what we need to do.”