FOXBOROUGH -- Though he understands why it happened, Tom Brady didn't want all of the fuss surrounding the left knee injury he suffered last Wednesday in practice, downplaying the incident and saying he's endured worse, and his teammates have as well.
"You guys were all there," said Brady. "Things come up in practice a lot of times, itís certainly a physical game, different guys get knocked around at different times, I got knocked around, and like I said earlier today, we tried to be smart about what we were doing, I had to go and get some treatment and get to work. Thatís what I like to do most."
The Patriots quarterback took a tumble when Buccaneers defensive end Adrian Clayborn bull-rushed Nate Solder back into him. Brady sat on the grass for several moments holding his left knee, played a few more snaps, then left the field with the head trainer.
"Anytime itís a little scary when you go down, but thatís the sport," he said. "It happens in the game, it happens in practice, and Iím certainly not the first nor the last to have that happen.
"Iím fortunate that it wasnít very bad. Like I said, I was able to get treatment and get back on the field with my teammates and get back to work."
Leaving practice early wasn't his call, Brady indicated, but it was the best option.
"I donít want to make a fuss about it, but at that time, I didnít have too much of a choice," he said. "It was nice to go out there and play and play against a good team in Tampa. We had a few days of practice and now we come back to our own practices and get focused on Detroit because thatís what we have to do now.
"Everyoneís getting into game mode. Itís been fun to play back-to-back games. We got another one thatís happening quickly, on a short week, and Iím excited to be out there and play."
There were many fans who questioned why Brady was not wearing the hinged black knee brace he's worn in games since returning from the left ACL tear he suffered in 2008, but Brady has never really worn it in practice.
That may be changing now.
"I had it today, so everyone was very pleased," said Brady. "Mr. [Robert] Kraft felt pretty strongly about me wearing it. He said, 'What's the problem?' I said, 'I wear it.' I just -- sometimes when you wear the brace a lot, you get used to wearing the brace, and I like to keep a nice strong leg, and if it wasn't strong, something bad would have happened."