It can be argued that the toughest opponent in Tom Brady’s career is the Baltimore Ravens. While Brady does boast a 9-3 career record over the Ravens, he has fallen to them twice in the playoffs and has six one-score victories over them.
He’ll go up against the Ravens again on Sunday when he and the Patriots travel down to Baltimore for the first time since 2013.
Brady held his weekly press conference on Friday and shared his respect for his opponent.
“They’re a great team. Great team; very successful organization,” Brady said of the Ravens. “I’ve had some really tough games against those guys. They’ve always presented a big challenge for us. So, it’s a unique environment – pretty tough, very loud.”
Sunday’s game will be a little bit different than past matchups against the Ravens for Brady. This will be the first time that neither one of Ray Lewis, Ed Reed, or Terrell Suggs will be on the opposing defense as the three former Defensive Players of the Year have either retired (Lewis and Reed) or have left Baltimore (Suggs).
“Those guys were great players, and I think probably a lot like us, they really set the standard for great defensive play,” Brady said of his old foes. “They’ve won a couple Super Bowl titles in the last 20 years. I heard Ed’s [Reed] getting his Hall of Fame ring, or something like that, so I’m sure they’ll be excited.”
The Ravens will also have a different quarterback than they’ve had in the previous 10 matchups. Joe Flacco, who was the Ravens starting quarterback from 2009-2018, was traded to the Denver Broncos last off-season to give Lamar Jackson the starting job full-time.
Brady was very complimentary of the young quarterback.
“[He’s] just exceptionally talented – speed, quickness, he’s throwing the ball well,” Brady said. “He just has great awareness in the pocket, when to run, and I think his productivity has really been unmatched. So, he’s got a very unique skillset.”
As for who will be playing for the Patriots on Sunday, rookie wide receiver N’Keal Harry might make his NFL debut. Harry was placed on Injured Reserve at the beginning of the season but is designated to return. This week is the first week he’s eligible to return.
Brady said that it was good to have Harry back on the practice field but it’s up to Harry to earn the trust of the team and the coaching staff.
“Yeah, he’s missed a lot of football,” Brady said. “He’s just got to try to work at it every day, and it’s going to be up to him to put the effort in and to – you know, everyone’s there to help him, but you’ve got to go out there and you’ve got to do it and earn it, and earn the trust of your teammates and coaches and stuff.”
When asked what to expect from Harry if he plays this weekend, Brady didn’t really have much of an answer to that.
“Whoever’s out there, that’s who I play with,” Brady said. “So, I don’t make the decisions, who’s up and who’s down and so forth.”
Brady was placed on the injury report on Wednesday with a shoulder injury. However, he was a full participant and off the injury report at Thursday’s practice.
“I’m not hurt. I feel good,” Brady said. “I’m off the injury report yesterday. I’m a quick healer. Yeah, I feel pretty good.”