The Patriots had to grind through some offensive struggles in the first half in Sunday’s 33-7 win over Washington, but Tom Brady is standing by his offensive line.
Asked about the team’s unforeseen occasional difficulty moving the ball against winless Washington during his Monday interview on WEEI’s “The Greg Hill Show,” Brady was emphatic in his support.
“I think those guys are playing great football,” said Brady. “Pass protection’s been great all season. There’s a really tough, hard working group up there.”
Brady noted how the line has dealt with a range of injuries during the season, praising offensive line coach Dante Scarnecchia.
“We’ve had a lot of moving parts at that position dating back to training camp,” the Patriots quarterback noted. “We added a bunch of new players right after the final cut. For Dante Scarnecchia to get all those guys together, and then dealing with Isaiah Wynn’s injury, then dealing with David Andrews, I mean I think that’s pretty exceptional what those guys have accomplished. I’m very proud of them.”
Andrews, normally the starting center, is missing the 2019 season with blood clots in his lungs.
One thing Brady pointed out was the eventual success of the ground attack, which totaled 130 yards on 27 carries.
“We got the run game going yesterday a little bit, which was great,” said Brady. “Anytime you do that, it’s just a whole different game when we’re running the ball and making a lot of yards per carry, you become very efficient. Those guys take a lot of pride in that and we’re going to need that again this week.”
Brady was asked specifically about the offense’s first half difficult in moving the ball, even against a lackluster Washington defense.
“We’re definitely showing a lot of inconsistency and I think that first half was very much what it’s been,” admitted Brady. “Again, we’ve had a lot of moving parts on offense with guys being in and out at skill positions, running back, at the tight end position, at the receiver position — [Phillip Dorsett] went out after about four plays yesterday — so guys get forced into different roles, and I think the reality is that’s football, that’s the NFL.
“Over the course 16 games, it’s very hard to believe that your entire offense is going to stay healthy,” continued Brady. “It’s basically not. There’s 100 percent injury rate in the NFL. The point is it’s not always going to go great in the first quarter, it’s not always going to go great in the second quarter, it’s not always going to go great through three quarters.
“But you play 60 minutes of football. You try to make adjustments throughout. I thought our coaches offensively did a great job of adjusting going into halftime. We just found some different things that we liked and then became a little bit more efficient on offense and that was a good way to score three touchdowns in the second half. That’s always a good feeling.”
And Brady took time to praise the strong representation of Patriots fans at FedExField on Sunday.
“It was pretty cool,” said Brady. “It really was. We’ve had some cool road environments. That was — from the time we ran out for opening warmups — it was almost all Patriots fans. It was probably 70-30, so pretty amazing to have that on the road. Just to see our fans come out and support us, it felt like a home game for us. So that was pretty sweet.”