ORCHARD PARK, N.Y. – It certainly wasn't pretty, but wins are what's most important.
Patriots quarterback Tom Brady certainly agrees, lamenting the struggles the team endured Sunday against the Buffalo Bills in their season opener, a 23-21 victory, while expressing his optimism for what was accomplished.
"I'll take it," Brady said. "Opening day and we didn't execute great but the boys made some clutch plays when they needed to and it was an all-around team effort."
Brady didn't have his finest outing, finishing 29 of 52 for 288 yards passing and two touchdowns along with one interception. He appeared frustrated at times with his new wide receivers in the second half. As the game wore on, he found himself favoring Danny Amendola and Shane Vereen like they were his crutches.
"They are two great playmakers for us," he said. "Guys that run really hard for us, the coaching staff, and me, so they put themselves in position to make critical plays. It was great to be in the huddle with them."
Amendola finished with 10 receptions for 104 yards, including two key grabs in the fourth quarter on third down. He missed a bit of time in the second quarter after he appeared to aggravate an injury to his groin.
"He really toughed it out, which was pretty impressive," Brady said. "He fought all day. We got a whole team full of fighters. I think there is gonna be some ugly wins. But we're always gonna fight. We're just gonna fight to the end."
With only four days until the Patriots take on the New York Jets in their home opener, a nationally televised game on Thursday night, Brady sees a ton of work that needs to be done.
"I think we have a long way to go," he said. "We've got a lot of work ahead of us. We have to prove that week in and week out. I'm glad we started with a win. Winning feels a helluva lot better than a loss. I don't think our execution was flawless by any stretch. We had a lot of mistakes and we have to do a lot better."