In a matter of two days, the New England Patriots released Antonio Brown and lost Julian Edelman to injury late in the first half of their Week 3 matchup with the New York Jets.
Many teams would crumble under those circumstances. The Patriots won 30-14. Patriots quarterback Tom Brady addressed Brown’s release and Edelman’s chest injury Monday night in his weekly interview on Westwood One with Jim Gray. Brady reportedly told Patriots owner Robert Kraft he was “all in” when the Patriots signed Brown. Brady said that was a private conversation that he wished remained private.
Brady also was asked about “reports” that he and Patriots head coach Bill Belichick were not in favor of Kraft’s decision to release Brown. Brady said he doesn’t make personnel decisions and joked maybe he will as an NFL owner one day. There are no known reports that Brady and Belichick were not in favor of the decision to cut Brown. It has been reported that Kraft and Belichick made the decision together.
Brady also gave an encouraging update on Edelman.
“Yeah, I think he’s still working towards some tests,” Brady said. “I think it’s probably going to work through it all week. He’s a tough guy. I’d say Julian — I’ve played with a lot of warriors over the years — Julian is certainly one of them. Football is a very violent sport. You can never take that for granted. When you do come off the field healthy, even when you lose I think the perspective I’ve gained is you still come out with somewhat of a victory if you’re not injured because it’s a contact sport.
“Julian, he’s tough, he wants to be out there, he’s going to do everything he can do to get ready. We’ll see how it plays out over the course of the week.”
Despite Brady’s optimism about Edelman, he still seems a little down on the entire wide receiver depth. With Edelman out, the Patriots’ wide receiver corps consisted of Josh Gordon, Phillip Dorsett, Jakobi Meyers and Gunner Olszewski. The Patriots also were playing without running back James White. Fullback James Develin, left tackle Isaiah Wynn and wide receiver N’Keal Harry have been placed on injured reserve.
Gray asked Brady about the Patriots’ “issues” at the receiver position.
“It’s definitely a challenging situation that we’re facing with depth and so forth,” Brady said. “We’re going on the road against a very good defensive football team. Any time you’re dealing with injuries and lack of depth at certain positions, we’re going to try to figure out how to produce yards and points. Any time you lose great players, it definitely takes a hit to your offense.
“And the reality is we’re facing a very challenging game coming up. So, we’ll go do the best we can do based on the circumstances that we have. Again, no one’s ever feeling sorry for the Patriots nor should they. I’ve got a job to do and I’m going to try to do it with whoever is out there. And I’m going to try to do it the best way I possibly can.”
The Patriots travel to play the Buffalo Bills on Sunday.
Thumbnail photo via Steve Mitchell/USA TODAY Sports Images