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Brady reassures Ochocinco: “You’re doing good”

San Diego Chargers v New England Patriots

FOXBORO, MA - SEPTEMBER 18: Tom Brady #12 of the New England Patriots confers with Chad Ochocinco #85 of the New England Patriots during a game with the San Diego Chargers at Gillette Stadium on September 18, 2011 in Foxboro, Massachusetts. (Photo by Jim Rogash/Getty Images)

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With Albert Haynesworth now done in New England, questions are starting to emerge about whether the Patriots’ other high-profile offseason acquisition, Chad Ochocinco, could be next. But Tom Brady doesn’t appear to want Ochocinco to go.

Brady has said publicly that he supports Ochocinco, and after Brady and Ochocinco failed to connect on a third-and-7 play in Sunday’s loss to the Giants, the NFL Films cameras caught Brady privately encouraging Ochocinco as well.

“You’re doing good,” Brady told Ochocinco. “You’re doing good. Just keep playing hard. That’s all I want.”

But the fact is, Ochocinco is not doing well. He has nine catches for 136 yards and no touchdowns this season, and in the loss to the Giants all five passes Brady threw to Ochocinco were incomplete.

And Ochocinco just doesn’t look like he fits in the Patriots’ precision passing game. On that incompletion on third-and-7, Ochocinco appeared to cut off his route, turn around and jump for the ball, when if he had just kept running his route he would have been exactly where Brady’s incomplete pass landed. Ochocinco apologized to Brady for that on the sideline afterward.

“I don’t want to cut it short,” Ochocinco told Brady, seeming to confirm that’s exactly what he had done.

From all indications, the Patriots aren’t planning to give Ochocinco the Haynesworth treatment. But he’s having a bad season, not matter how many reassurances Brady gives him.