With Tom Brady's absence from the Patriots' injury report this week, what some might consider the second-most famous 56-game streak in sports history comes to a quiet end.
The franchise quarterback's name does not appear on the injury report for the first time since the opening game of the 2005 season. Brady had been listed as "probable" with a right shoulder injury every game for four seasons, including 48 regular-season and eight playoff games.
It is the clearest sign yet that the 2007 NFL Most Valuable Player is ready for Sunday's season opener against the Kansas City Chiefs. Brady, who has been dealing with a sore right foot, did not take a snap during the Patriots' four preseason games, but had full participation in practice yesterday.
Of course, Brady's most important streak remains alive: He has made 127 straight regular season and playoff starts, the third-longest among quarterbacks, trailing Brett Favre (272) and Peyton Manning (174).
Brady is likely to be without one of his targets Sunday: tight end Benjamin Watson, who had 36 catches for 389 yards and six touchdowns a season ago, is listed as doubtful with a knee injury.