Brady Sits Out Despite Being "Ready"
Brady at practice after big hit (AP Photo/Stew Milne)
Posted Sep 4, 2009

Tom Brady said he's feeling better, but that wasn't enough to get him out on the Field Thursday night. Brady's health is a one the QB is one topic the veteran quarterback is versed in avoiding.

Tom Brady knows how to deal with question about his health… he avoids them. When cornered by his hosts on a local radio show who wanted to get an update on his condition Monday, all Brady would say was that he can play if the coach wants him to.

Brady was sidelined after getting crushed by Washington Redskins defensive lineman Albert Haynesworth in Friday night's preseason game. Instead of returning to the lineup as expected in the third period, Brady headed into the locker room and disappeared for the night. The official word was that he had a "sore shoulder." But because he wasn't available for comment after the game, speculation arose whether he injured his throwing shoulder.

Understandably, the curiosity surrounding his health became the topic of the weekend with Chad Ochocinco weighing in with a twitter update. Ochcinco wrote that he spoke to Brady and the quarterback told him he was ok.

"Yeah, I don't remember talking to him," Brady told his WEEI hosts. "Ochocinco is a little bit evasive at times."

New England Patriots Andrew Walter (16) watches Tom Brady run a drill Aug 31, 2009. (AP Photo/Stew Milne)

After the hit, Brady could be seen trying to get his shoulder ready to go when he returned. He never had that chance as the coach kept him out of the lineup. At least, that was the story afterwards.

According to his coach, if Belichick wants Brady to play, he'll play. "We're going to go out there and try to improve this week as a team and improve in practice," Brady said.

Thursday arrived and Brady was dressed for the game. Tossing the ball in pregame warm-ups, it appeared the New England leader would make good on his promise of playing if Belichick called. Belichick didn't

Brady along with the rest of the starters sat out the preseason finale, paving the way for the players on the roster bubble to have one last chance to make an impression. For the Backups it was the Brian Hoyer show as the rookie played the entire game. Veteran backup Andrew Walter was ready, but didn't get the call.

"The way the game went, we were coming back [and] we felt like [Hoyer] deserved a chance to keep playing and see what he could do with the outcome of the game," Belichick said after the game.

Belichick learned more about the team that did play on Thursday night.

"Those guys showed me a lot out there that played tonight - 34 of them, or whatever it was," Belichick said. "We have a lot of work to do, a lot of decisions to make and get ready here for Buffalo."

The decisions begin today as the team faces cutting players to meet the league-mandated 53-man limit by 4:00 pm Saturday.

For now, Brady looks ready to go and is expected to be fully recovered by next Monday night (Sept 14.) when the Patriots face the Bills in the regular season opener.

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