BOSTON (CBS) — If it seems at times like Tom Brady knows the Jets’ defense inside and out, it may be because he does.
A report on Thursday said that Brady and the Patriots had gained access to a defensive playbook of the Jets. It’s all hearsay, but here’s how it goes in Browns head coach Mike Pettine’s interview with Greg Bedard:
Pettine told a story of how, at Wes Welker’s wedding, Tom Brady bragged a little bit to Jets outside linebackers coach Mike Smith, who was Welker’s college roommate, that the Patriots may or may not have had possession of a couple Jets defensive playbooks.
“It didn’t shock me because Rex would give them out like candy anyway,” Pettine says. “He gave one out to [Alabama coach Nick] Saban and I was like, ‘Don’t you know Saban and Bill [Belichick] are pretty good friends? I have a feeling it’s going to end up in New England.’”
Pettine, the former Jets defensive coordinator, also discussed why he does not include too much information in his Cleveland playbook.
“We know in places like New England, it’s only a matter of time that they somehow mysteriously end up with our playbook,” Pettine said.
That’s a lofty charge, especially considering that in the story he relayed, it was Rex Ryan’s own carelessness that supposedly led to outside sources gaining access to the playbook.
Bill Belichick was asked about the report after Thursday’s practice session.
“You’ll have to talk to Mike [Pettine] about it, I don’t know,” Belichick stated flatly.
Again, it’s all hearsay, but it’s an interesting tidbit nonetheless. It’s also sure to inspire rounds of “Spygate” comments typed underneath stories throughout the Internet world.
Playbook or not, Brady has found success in his career against the Jets. He’s won 18 of the 26 regular-season meetings between the teams, completing 487 of 786 (62 percent) passes for 5,585 yards (215 per game), 32 touchdowns and 11 interceptions. His best performance against the Jets might have been on national TV in December 2010, when he completed a tidy 21 of 29 passes for 326 yards, four touchdowns and zero picks.
The Jets, however, held Brady to 29-of-45 passing for 299 yards, two touchdowns and an interception a few weeks later in the playoffs, in a game which the Jets won. Perhaps they changed their playbook.
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