FOXBOROUGH -- Patriots quarterback Tom Brady answered questions from the media today at Gillette Stadium, breaking from routine and coming into the interview room instead of taking the questions at his locker.
Some of the Q&A:
What impresses you most about Peyton Manning?
"What's not to be impressed by? He does everything well. He throws the short stuff, he throws the deep stuff, he's a leader. Once again, he's a clutch performer. He's always in command of the team, and of the offense. He's a great actor [laughter]."
This team has received some negative press. Is that a rallying cry for players to some degree? Are you guys playing with a chip on your shoulder?
"I think like Coach says we look at each opportunity on the field as a way to get better, to improve. We play for as long as the clock says zero-zero. So it's an interesting question, of scoring too many points. I don't know if that's ever been a problem here in the past. I think you just try to do the best you can do. As an offense, that's what we're trying to do. We're not trying to let other teams tee off on us, or let them get the best of us. If you call a play, you want to make it a great play. I don't think we want to come off the field and say 'God, that was great, I hope they feel good about themselves because we got the crap knocked out of us.' I don't think that's the approach an offensive football team should take. I don't think that's an approach any team takes, to tell you the truth."
In this rare instance, is the hype right? Is this matchup deserving of the buildup?
"I hope so. I hope it's a blowout, actually [laughter]. I'm sure nobody else would like that. They're a great football team. And I think we've proven over the last eight weeks that we can play at a pretty high level ourselves. Two undefeated teams and obviously with the history of these teams, it makes for a great matchup."