FOXBORO, Mass. — New England Patriots quarterback Tom Brady needed stitches near his right thumb to play Sunday. It did not look like he had a sewn up throwing hand as he led the Patriots to a fourth-quarter comeback win over the Jacksonville Jaguars to move on to Super Bowl LII.
How many stitches Brady needed on his hand depends on which reporter or radio personality you believe. WEEI’s Kirk Minihane initially said Brady needed three. The Sports Hub’s Mike Felger said Brady was sewn up with four. ESPN’s Mike Reiss reported Brady needed 10 stitches before the game. After the game, ESPN’s Adam Schefter said No. 12 actually needed 12.
Brady himself wouldn’t say how many stitches he required.
“Never had anything like it,” Brady said Sunday night after the Patriots’ 24-20 win. “Well, I’ve had a couple crazy injuries, but this was pretty crazy. They come up and you just deal with them, and I wasn’t quite sure how I was going to do on Wednesday, Wednesday night, and then Thursday wasn’t sure. And then Friday gained a little confidence and then Saturday was trying to figure out what we could do, and Sunday, try to come out here and make it happen.
“You know, we all put a lot out there. I mean, this was a little injury at the end of the day. It’s certainly a big part of what a quarterback does. I mean, I’ve had a lot worse injuries than this, but if this was on my left hand, I could (not) care less, but just based on where it was, we had to deal with it.”
Brady wore black tape over his stitches. He wouldn’t say the wrap affected his play for fear of sounding “arrogant,” but he didn’t know if he would be able to play at one point in the week leading up to the game.
“Yeah, I wasn’t sure on Wednesday,” Brady said. “I certainly didn’t think — I thought out of all the plays, my season can’t end on a handoff in practice. We didn’t come this far to end on a handoff. It’s just one of those things. Yeah, so I came in the training room and just was looking at my hand and wasn’t quite sure what happened, and everyone did a great job kind of getting me ready and the training staff and the doctors and Alex (Guerrero). It was a great team effort. Without that, I definitely wouldn’t be playing.”
Brady believes he’ll have the stitches removed this week.
“I think hopefully this week, mid-week, and then I can just get out there and get normal treatment like I always do and be ready to go,” Brady said.
The Patriots have two weeks to prepare for the Philadelphia Eagles in Super Bowl LII. Brady should be fine. Rob Gronkowski’s status as he recovers from a concussion will be worth monitoring.
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