Patriots

Curran: Everybody has a sad because Tom Brady walked away

Curran: Everybody has a sad because Tom Brady walked away

Is a person obliged to respond to damaging, fact-free speculation about his business? 

Especially if a statement has already dismissed this speculation as unfounded (cue the: “Yeah, what else are they going to say???” retort). Should another statement be made that just gives the fact-free speculation more traction? 

Saturday afternoon, Ben Volin of The Boston Globe asked Brady, “When Julian [Edelman] tested positive, a lot of people connected it to Alex Guerrero. What’s your reaction to that? Do you think it’s fair?”

Brady scoffed, then said, “I have no comments, just ridiculous.” He then smiled, said, “I’m out,” and walked away. 

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Since this happened Saturday, everybody hasn’t yet had their bite at the apple, their chance to “weigh in.” Now that Monday’s here, the reviews are in. And Brady is being roundly described as “soft.”

We have e-mail chains each day prior to our NBCSports Boston shows. Brady’s so far been derided as sensitive and compared to a 3-year-old. And it’s still early.  

Apparently, his line of thinking should have gone a little like this . . . 

You want to write a story about my close friend and teammate who failed a PED test and is going to sit out a quarter of the season? 

You’re wondering if I’ll distance myself from his indiscretion and throw in with my other close friend and business partner, who’s been widely and repeatedly denounced in the local media as a snake oil salesman? 

And when I’m done talking off-the-cuff after a two-hour padded practice in tropical heat, my answer’s going to be dismissed as an overly-defensive crock with a few knee-slappers about avocado ice cream squeezed in?

Definitely!!!

How was Brady supposed to traipse through that verbal minefield? A minefield that’s there simply because of the obvious desire to see Guerrero and all the TB12 hokum discredited?

(DISCLOSURE!!! In 2013, I saw Guerrero twice for an old-man injury. Paid for his services. It worked. I’d happily recommend him to anyone with a nagging injury. And I’ve bought whey protein from TB12 as well.)

Was Volin entitled to ask the question? Sure. It was Brady’s first access of camp, anyone can ask what they want. 

But feeling aggrieved on Volin’s behalf at a request for Brady’s reaction to “a lot of people!” spitballing about Brady and Guerrero’s business based on something Edelman did? Or offended that Brady ended the press conference and walked away? That itself seems a soft reaction. 

Brady knows by now that his decision to create the sovereign country of TB12 changed things permanently. If you’re going to build an empire, marry the world’s most famous supermodel, appear in movies, hobnob nonstop with the elite at glitzy awards shows, dress weird, make a spectacle of yourself on social media, build a California palace and evangelize about the how-to handbook for life you created with your body coach, well, you’re asking for it. 

“It,” he has now come to realize, includes steady criticism and scrutiny from the region’s paper of record on everything from his charity work to how long he kisses his kids. And a true devotion to make Guerrero seem batcrap crazy and dangerous. 

Brady’s reaction came because the question presumed he was obligated to answer what he sees as an ongoing effort to discredit Guerrero and TB12. 

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I don’t feel badly for Brady. It is what it is and this is the life he chose. He’s the one who, for lack of a better phrase, “put it out there.”

But I also don’t begrudge him for drawing up his own rules of media engagement. 

We’re all remoras to the Great White that is Brady. Media. Fans. Teammates. Coaches. The league itself. Clusters of suckerfish that hang close and feed, feed, feed on the content Brady provides on and off the field.

And on Saturday, even in giving the media nothing, he gave them plenty. 

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Peyton Manning claims Giants beating Patriots as 'favorite Super Bowl memory'

Peyton Manning claims Giants beating Patriots as 'favorite Super Bowl memory'

Peyton Manning either is a very supportive brother or delights in seeing his long-time rival fail. Or a little of both.

In a tribute to younger brother Eli Manning, who announced his retirement from the New York Giants on Friday, Peyton insisted his "favorite Super Bowl memory" was watching Eli defeat the undefeated New England Patriots in Super Bowl XLII.

"I think people don't really believe me or are surprised [when I say] my greatest Super Bowl memory is watching my little brother take the New York Giants down the field in a two-minute drill and beat the undefeated Patriots and all that came with that," Peyton said in an interview with Broncos.com's Aric DiLalla.

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"Maybe I wasn't as happy as the '72 Dolphins, who I promise you were celebrating and they're on record saying that, but I was pretty close."

Let's get this straight: Peyton enjoyed watching someone else win a Super Bowl (during a season in which his Indianapolis Colts were bounced early in the playoffs) more than he enjoyed winning two Super Bowls for two different teams (with the Colts in 2006 and the Denver Broncos in 2013)?

"It was just pride and he's five years younger than me and you kind of reflect on the times growing up," Peyton said, adding that his memories of Eli as a "quiet, calm and cool kid" made it "surreal" to watch Eli lead an upset of one of the greatest teams of all time.

"That's my greatest Super Bowl memory without a doubt, even more than the ones I was able to participate in," Peyton said. "He did it."

That Eli's first Super Bowl win came over Tom Brady and the Patriots probably made it that much sweeter for Peyton, who was 6-11 against Brady during his career.

Super Bowl XLII was one of Brady's most painful memories, so maybe this was Peyton's way of getting revenge for Tom calling him out on "Peyton's Places" earlier this month.

Ex-Patriots WR Danny Amendola gives his take on Tom Brady's NFL future

Ex-Patriots WR Danny Amendola gives his take on Tom Brady's NFL future

Danny Amendola is the latest NFL player to weigh in on the future of New England Patriots quarterback Tom Brady.

Brady is able to become an unrestricted free agent for the first time in his career in March unless he and the Patriots come to a contract agreement before that point. The 42-year-old quarterback has spent his entire 20-year career in New England, but nothing lasts forever and you can bet most teams would love to add Brady to their roster if he ever chose to leave the Patriots.

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Amendola appeared on ESPN's "SportsCenter" on Friday, where he was asked about Brady's upcoming decision. He doesn't know exactly what will happen, but he noted family definitely will play a factor.

"It's going to go however he wants. He's the ultimate competitor," Amendola said. "I think as his kids get older, he wants to spend time with his family. I think that's going to weigh heavily on his decision and where he goes, and he can set that up the way he wants. His competitive nature, his ability is still through the roof. And whatever team gets him -- if he stays in New England or if he goes somewhere else -- he's going to bring a high level of football there."

When asked about the Los Angeles Chargers being a potential destination for Brady, Amendola admitted it's difficult to see the six-time Super Bowl champion in a different uniform.

"It's hard for me to see him in any other jersey than a Patriots jersey, so I'm holding on just like everybody else is," Amendola said.

Patriots fans obviously would love for Brady to return for at least one more season in New England, and most of them probably wouldn't mind Amendola coming back as well. The Patriots need to upgrade their depth and talent at wide receiver before the 2020 season, and Amendola will be a free agent in March.

Phil Perry: Why Pats can't wait on Tom Brady's free agent tour