After hanging up during an August interview with WEEI radio hosts “Kirk & Callahan,” Tom Brady’s status as a recurring guest on the show appeared to be in doubt. Yet the Patriots quarterback returned on Monday morning following the team’s season opening 27-20 win over the Texans on Sunday.
Minus the usual hosts, Brady spoke with Greg Dickerson and Michael Mutnansky on football-focused topics.
“I thought we settled in better in the second quarter,” said Brady of the Patriots’ performance. The New England offense capped a 75-yard touchdown at the start of the second quarter, closing it with another touchdown drive (eight plays, 78 yards).
“It was challenging. It was frustrating. It was exciting, and overall again to get the win is just what we all wanted,” Brady summarized of the 2018 opener.
On Rob Gronkowski, Brady was effusive in his praise.
“He’s just a spectacular player,” said Brady. “You have to give those guys opportunities. They did a good job on him just trying to keep him out of the game, but it’s tough because he’s so talented. He’s the best tight end in the league – probably the best to ever to play the game.”
And he challenged his teammates to rise to Gronkowski’s level.
“We have to match his greatness, all of us, in order for us to be a great offense.”
“I think things will continually change over the course of the season,” said the 41-year-old veteran about his perspective following the first game. “It’s almost like the first mile in the marathon. We haven’t faced any adversities yet. We’re going to lose players, other teams will lose players, weather conditions, bad bounces, things that happen situationally. A lot goes into it.”
Looking ahead to the Patriots’ next opponent, the Jaguars, Brady discussed the talent across the Jacksonville defense.
“I think they have a very rare skill set of players, their ability to rush the quarterback, their speed at linebacker, and their experience and skill in the secondary is pretty unmatched in the NFL. So there’s no margin of error.”
After admitting that the AFC Championship win over the Jaguars in January was one of the best non-Super Bowl wins in his career, Brady – in reference to his hand injury suffered shortly before the January matchup – noted that he “hoped we’re not dealing with anything like that this week.”