The New England Patriots’ offense is banged up, yes, but the success ultimately starts and stops with Tom Brady.
Even as Brady sees players go down around him, the veteran quarterback is having another fine season in his likely Hall of Fame career. That’s bad news for Chip Kelly and the Philadelphia Eagles, who come to Foxboro this weekend with the tall task of trying to slow down a Patriots offense that figures to move the ball well — even without Rob Gronkowski and Julian Edelman.
In Kelly’s eyes, it all starts with Brady. The Eagles coach said on a conference call Wednesday that the Patriots’ offensive injuries don’t mean a whole lot to him, at least not if Brady isn’t on the injury report. He repeated the sentiment Thursday before raving about Brady’s play and command of his offense.
“Did they lose Brady? Because that, I think, would really, truly affect them,” Kelly said, reusing his joke at his Thursday news conference. “I think it really just speaks to how good of a football player Tom is and the fact that they have had a lot of moving pieces around him. For them, it’s that next-man-up mentality, which it really helps when (Brady’s) the guy pulling the trigger because he really is an orchestra leader out there in terms of directing protections, changing routes and changing everything. He’s been in that offense since he’s been in the league, so he’s got an unbelievable command of it.”
Kelly marveled at Brady’s ability to integrate new players into the offensive system, even as key offensive contributors go down.
“And then they find a way to find players that kind of fit and they know what the individual player can do and they try to maximize that,” Kelly continued. “It all starts and ends with (Brady). He’s a first-ballot Hall of Famer and it’s a huge challenge for us to have to go up and defend him, because he’s running the whole show.”
Thumbnail photo via David Butler II/USA TODAY Sports Images