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Thinking Out Loud: How did Patriots become so despised by everyone? 07.31.15 at 7:27 pm ET
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Rooke_JohnThinking out loud … while wondering what Jose Canseco has been up to lately?

— How did we arrive at this point? How did a championship-caliber franchise and Hall of Fame-to-be QB become the hated and the hunted — by the NFL and all of its teams? It began with an inaccurate report from ESPN that was never corrected, either through ignorance or arrogance or perhaps an edict — allegedly (Mike Kensil?) from the league itself.

— I don’t believe Deflategate was a “sting” so much as it was a simple, “You’re too high and mighty; we’re gonna get you, eventually,” by the NFL, or more specifically, NFL VP of game operations Kensil (a former Jets employee) and NFL executive VP and general counsel Jeff Pash. Colts GM Ryan Grigson figures into this as well. It’s odd that there has been this near-scurrilous fervor with which these men have displayed at times in this entire fiasco. You have to ask the question, “Why do they do what they do?” It’s a fair point. Are they under direct orders, or do they have grudges to settle?

— In an era of alleged parity, New England has managed six Super Bowl appearances in 15 years, winning four of those. I would maintain the rest of the league, and the league office itself, is trying to decipher how they’ve done it. And the NFL is taking great pains to expose any shred of impropriety, and blow up any inkling of idiosyncrasy as a scarlet letter for the franchise to wear upon its jersey. It’s all about “The Shield,” and no one team can rise above it.

— Why? There are several reasons, all of them plausible — from good ol’ fashioned envy and jealousy to anger and greed. Thirty-one other teams and millions of fans are enjoying every minute of this fiasco, watching the Patriots squirm and TB12 twist in the wind. To the NFL, it’s tremendous theater, and frankly, if I’m looking at it from the outside, I have to agree. It’s a show, all right.

— The NFL has blasted the Patriots in the PR battle, and it has been an artful performance. The league has taken false science, maybes, rumor and innuendo, and slotted words like “destroy” into their press releases, giving the football-crazed country outside of New England reason to believe we’re all cheaters. I’ve spent the past two weeks in football-mad Texas, and the Brady saga is mentioned in the same breath as two state schools (TCU and Baylor) being ranked in the top five of the college preseason poll. A pound of air pressure vs. two college powerhouses. Whoa.

— Do you feel any better about Robert Kraft now that he’s come out and apologized for “trusting” the NFL?  Kraft’s angst over the league, and over Roger Goodell’s upholding of Brady’s suspension, is a bit misguided. After all, it is HIS team, not the league’s. I understand his wanting to get along for the common good, but this is a perfect example of someone attempting what he thought to be the right thing and then getting steamrolled. It’s past time to revert to the business tactics that have made him a billionaire in the first place. It’s now time to be ruthless and unforgiving, as most of us originally hoped he would be. Goodell played Kraft for a fool here. Just sayin’.

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Read More: Deflategate, Tom Brady,
Thinking Out Loud: Why should Tom Brady accept a suspension if he’s not guilty? 07.17.15 at 8:47 pm ET
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Rooke_JohnThinking out loud … while wondering whatever happened to Ray Fosse?

— Tick, tick, tock. Still nothing from NFL czar Roger Goodell on the Tom Brady decision, even though we had multiple reports this week saying the ruling would come today — or tomorrow — or by the end of the week. It was none of the above. Trying to predict when news will happen, just so you can say “I’m first!” only creates foolishness, and erodes credibility. Competition causes reasonable people to act unreasonably.

— We did, however, learn that Brady’s legal team and the NFLPA will take the matter to federal court should a suspension of any length be at hand. Can’t say I’m surprised. If you’re not guilty, why accept a plea bargain?

— We’ve maintained in this corner that Brady would fight his four-game suspension to the bitter end. Sure, it would be best to move this along and get it behind us all, but the NFL’s resistance to logic only adds fuel to the competitive fire in Foxboro. So let the tick, tick, tock keep on ticking. The explosion to come could be entertaining.

— I’m not big into awards shows, and the ESPYs have pretty much run their course for me since their inception in 1993. It was cool when it started, even cooler to be a small part of it by interviewing some of the stars on the radio after the show had completed, but in later years it has become passé with athletes mostly trying to outdo other athletes for recognition. The show this year, on Wednesday night, was a bit different.

— Yes, there was the surreal spectacle that was Caitlyn Jenner. Say whatever you want about her, and you’d probably be right. Bravery, however, was at least a small part of her appearance. And for the Cincinnati Bengals‘ Devon Still, whose daughter Leah continues to fight pediatric cancer? If anyone deserves good will, he deserves to have his prayers answered and have a healthy daughter. He’s well-spoken and proud. And seems to be a great dad, too.

— Play of the Year? Odell Beckham Jr.’s one-handed catch? Please. How about an amazing play that actually counted for something — like Malcolm Butler’s goal-line pick in the Super Bowl? It will only go down as the single most memorable play in championship history. But not Play of the Year. Stupid is as stupid does.

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Read More: Roger Goodell, Tom Brady,
Thinking Out Loud: Tom Brady, Roger Goodell must come to compromise 06.26.15 at 8:04 pm ET
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Rooke_JohnThinking out loud … while wondering whatever happened to Vincent Council?

— We wait. And wait. And wait some more. It may be another month — or more — before we find out the results of Tom Brady‘s suspension appeal with the NFL. How can you possibly expect a league mired in its own mayhem to produce anything of a timely nature? You can’t. But you certainly can expect a decision sometime after the Fourth of July, at the very least, with briefs from both sides due by end of next week.

— Here’s a plausible scenario, just for kicks. The American Educational Institute report blew huge holes into the science behind the Wells Report. The Wells Report, more and more, appears to be an investigation into what the league “wanted” to find, not actually what was found. Maybe there was conspiracy, maybe not. Whatever the case, Roger Goodell is backed into a corner — he must reduce and/or eliminate TB12’s suspension based on actual findings and actual science, or he risks federal court proceedings. And if he does reduce and/or eliminate, there’s little bite left in the bark from the commissioner’s office.

— There has to be a compromise. Either one game, or no games and a fine for Brady’s initial refusal to completely cooperate with a sham investigation conducted by Ted Wells. Followed by the pronouncement from the commissioner that Brady did nothing wrong, to assist in clearing his name and reputation. It’s the only way in which both sides can claim a victory. It could have been done months ago. And trust me, right now both sides want to “win” this — badly.

— Uh, Brad? You meant “twit” when you referred to Ian Poulter‘s complaints about the greens during last week’s U.S. Open, right? Faxon’s comments this week on WEEI were apparently aimed at Poulter not only because of his griping about the putting surfaces, but also because Poulter has apparently used the bad word himself. In this case, the word used was not meant as a derogatory comment toward a part of the female anatomy, but used to describe someone who is obnoxious. Clears that up.

— He could be playing, but Fax is back on Fox Sports this week for the U.S. Senior Open in Sacramento, where his Newport, Rhode Island, buddy P.H. Horgan found himself in early contention. He is contracted for eight events, including the USGA’s majors — the Open, the Women’s Open, the Senior Open and the Amateur. Rogue comments aside, reviews on Faxon as a golf commentator have been pretty solid.

— You can say he was lucky. You can say Dustin Johnson choked away a major with a three-putt to lose the U.S. Open. But you also have to say Jordan Spieth is just what the sport of golf needs right now — a young, good-looking, nice guy, a potential glamor boy for a sport that has been haunted for too long by the specter of Tiger Woods‘ bad-boy misdeeds.

— Watching Tiger play is akin to rubbernecking on the highway. Sure, we want to see the accident. But let’s move on, people. Nothing more to see here.

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Read More: Brad Faxon, Deflategate, Roger Goodell, Tom Brady
Wednesday’s Morning Mashup: Ravens LB Terrell Suggs surprisingly supports Tom Brady, plays down Deflategate 06.17.15 at 8:08 am ET
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Welcome to Wednesday’s Morning Mashup. For the latest news, start at our WEEI.com home page or click here for the top stories from our news wire.

WEDNESDAY’S BROADCAST HIGHLIGHTS:
MLB: Red Sox at Braves, 7:10 p.m. (NESN; WEEI-FM)
MLB: Rays at Nationals, 7:05 p.m. (ESPN2)
Soccer: Women’s World Cup, Mexico vs. France, 4 p.m. (Fox)
Soccer: Women’s World Cup, England vs. Colombia, 4 p.m. (FS1)
Soccer: Women’s World Cup, Costa Rica vs. Brazil, 7 p.m. (FS1)

AROUND THE WEB:

— Ravens linebacker Terrell Suggs rarely misses an opportunity to take a shot at Tom Brady — on and off the field. However, Suggs was surprisingly supportive of the Patriots quarterback when asked about Brady’s legacy following the QB’s four-game suspension for his role in Deflategate and his failure to cooperate with the league’s investigation.

“The guy is a winner,” Suggs said Tuesday (via The Baltimore Sun). “He’s won with whatever kind of personnel that he’s had. So I don’t think it really tarnished it. You need something to write about. Everybody needs something to write about, needs something to talk about, I guess. There’s is that. Ours was the deer antler [controversy involving Ray Lewis three years ago]. It’s always something.”

Last month, Suggs was spotted by TMZ leaving a Beverly Hills restaurant and was a little more willing to tweak the Pats over Deflategate, noting, “The last coach that got caught cheating got suspended for a whole year. So …”

This time, however, the normally outspoken Suggs said he didn’t want to wade into this controversy.

“I’m not stepping into that,” he said Tuesday. “I’m leaving that alone.”

— Michael Sam remains on the suspended list of the CFL’s Montreal Alouettes after leaving the team over the weekend, with no immediate resolution in sight.

Sam, the first openly gay player to be drafted by an NFL team, reportedly was struggling in Montreal’s training camp, leading to speculation that he left because he was afraid he would be cut.

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Read More: alex rodriguez, Michael Sam, Terrell Suggs, Tom Brady
Wednesday’s Morning Mashup: Jets fans take shot at Tom Brady on New Jersey billboards 05.13.15 at 7:54 am ET
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Welcome to Wednesday’s Morning Mashup. For the latest news, start at our WEEI.com home page or click here for the top stories from our news wire.

WEDNESDAY’S BROADCAST HIGHLIGHTS:
MLB: Red Sox at Athletics, 3:35 p.m. (NESN; WEEI-FM)
MLB: Nationals at Diamondbacks, 3:40 p.m. (MLB Network)
MLB: Mets at Cubs, 8:05 p.m. (ESPN)
NBA playoffs: Wizards at Hawks, 8 p.m. (TNT)
NBA playoffs: Grizzlies at Warriors, 10:30 p.m. (TNT)
NHL playoffs: Capitals at Rangers, 7:30 p.m. (NBCSN)
MLS: Orlando City at DC United, 8 p.m. (ESPN2)
Soccer: UEFA Champions, Juventus at Real Madrid, 2:30 p.m. (FS1)

AROUND THE WEB:

NY Daily News 5-13-15— Jets fans are used to buying billboards asking their owner to overhaul the front office, but this week they turned their attention to the Patriots and Tom Brady, in the wake of New England being punished by the league for deflating footballs prior to the AFC championship game.

Twelve electronic billboards in New Jersey made fun of the Pats‘ Deflategate problems, reading: #TomShady in big letters, with J-E-T-S JETS! JETS! JETS! below. The writing is in white letters on a green background — Jets colors.

“Jets fans are very opinionated,” said Outfront Media communications director Carly Zipp, who explained that a group of anonymous Jets fans reached out to her Monday to buy the ad space. “Because billboards are something that is seen by everyone, they knew the power of message and they wanted to get it out.”

Zipp said the messages went up Tuesday morning and will be up for the rest of the week.

The group of Jets fans who paid for the billboards last fall demanding owner Woody Johnson to fire general manager John Idzik (which he did) said it was not behind the Brady billboards.

— Former Florida State coach Bobby Bowden spoke candidly about Jameis Winston, acknowledging the Heisman Trophy-winning quarterback was “an embarrassment” to the school for his off-field issues.

“I think it’s a consensus among Florida State fans and boosters that he was an embarrassment in a lot of ways to the university,” Bowden said on The Paul Finebaum Show. “He won a lot of ball games, probably one of the best football players that ever attended Florida State, but he hurt himself off the field. The good news is he’s young enough to get over that. He just can’t make those junior high school decisions that he made when he was in college.”

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Read More: Bobby Bowden, Floyd Mayweather, Jameis Winston, Tom Brady
Monday’s Morning Mashup: Ray Lewis calls out Patriots again, questions ‘integrity of this game’ 01.26.15 at 8:15 am ET
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Welcome to Monday’s Morning Mashup. For the latest news, start at our WEEI.com home page or click here for the top stories from our news wire.

MONDAY’S BROADCAST HIGHLIGHTS:
NBA: Celtics at Jazz, 9 p.m. (CSNNE)
NBA: Trail Blazers at Nets, 7:30 p.m. (NBA TV)
College basketball: Syracuse at North Carolina, 7 p.m. (ESPN)
College basketball: Delaware State at NC Central, 7 p.m. (ESPNU)
College basketball: Army at American, 7 p.m. (CBSSN)
College basketball: Texas at Iowa State, 9 p.m. (ESPN)
College basketball: Prairie View A&M at Arkansas-Pine Bluff, 9 p.m. (ESPNU)
Tennis: Australian Open, 9 p.m., 3 a.m. (ESPN2)

AROUND THE WEB:

Ray Lewis is at it again, criticizing the Patriots and questioning their integrity.

Lewis, now an ESPN analyst after retiring from the Ravens, said during Sunday’s NFL Pro Bowl pregame show that the Patriots should have an asterisk for their alleged role in Deflategate.

“Every time we talk about the Patriots, you have the Patriots fans … you get all the talk about the jealous of them and all that. I won two Super Bowls, I’ve been Defensive Player of the Year, I’ve been MVP of the Super Bowl, I’ve went to New England and won … so I’€™m not jealous of them at all,” Lewis said.

“But the integrity of this game. Marshawn Lynch … the league clearly said to him, ‘If you come out of the tunnel with those shoes on, we will not only suspend you for this game, but we will suspend you for the Super Bowl.’ Now we’€™re back at another place where we let a team go into an AFC championship, and if it’s proven that they played with deflated balls … because if it’€™s not cheating, then the Colts should have had the same option to play with the same balls. So we’€™re at a place now where we’€™re going to celebrate an organization once again, put an asterisk by it, because they went into a championship game.

“The integrity of this game! That’€™s not the way you go into games trying to win football games.”

Lewis was criticized earlier this month when he claimed that the tuck rule is “the only reason we know who Tom Brady is.” He later issued a “clarification” in which he praised Brady’s accomplishments and called him “one of the all-time greats.”

— After reportedly failing another drug test, troubled Browns receiver Josh Gordon could face a one-year suspension from the league.

“Clearly we are very disappointed to hear the latest report regarding Josh,” the Browns said in a statement Sunday. “At this point, due to the confidential nature of the NFL’s substance-abuse policy, we have not been made aware by the league of a failed test. We are in the process of gathering more information and will provide further comment at the appropriate time.”

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Read More: alex rodriguez, Josh Gordon, Ray Lewis, Tom Brady
Thinking Out Loud: We’ll never get complete truth about Deflategate 01.23.15 at 12:49 pm ET
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Rooke_JohnThinking out loud . . . while wondering whatever happened to John Linehan …

— The NFL’s investigation into Deflategate against the Patriots? It’s the first league investigation of improperly deflated balls that didn’t involve use of PEDs. Just sayin’.

— I get the integrity/fair play/honesty part. But having covered the NFL for more than 30 years now, I also understand what people do to gain an edge. The Patriots push the envelope as much as any team or organization I’ve ever seen … maybe as much as I saw the Oklahoma Sooners push it in the 1970s and ‘€˜80s under Barry Switzer. They were real, straight-out-of-the-West outlaws. It doesn’t make it right, but few teams with a winning mentality want to be left behind.

— If there was a willful violation of the rules that occurred, that’s one thing. If someone within the Patriots organization purposely flaunted the rulebook, well, they’ll pay. It doesn’t mean the players are all cheaters, or the coaches, or the announcers or the fans. I don’t believe we’ll ever get the exact answer we’re looking for. In this case, it makes the current mob mentality of the media a real embarrassment … and a byproduct of the digital era of immediacy in which we currently live. We want answers, and we want them now … in 140 characters or less. The truth, and the search for the truth be damned.

— It seems that most in the national media throwing their darts toward New England have forgotten a few things along the way. The Colts, at one time, allegedly piped in crowd noise to their stadium for an advantage. There also were real strong thoughts on Indy purposely losing in 2011 to gain an advantage in the Andrew Luck derby. How does the old saying go? Those who live in glass houses shouldn’t throw stones? Make note, NFL. Stupid is as stupid does.

— The national pundits have proven themselves to be nothing more than sanctimonious windbags this week, in reacting to this story. Forfeit the Super Bowl? Year-long suspensions? Over two pounds of air in a football? Yeah, let’s make this more important than PED use in the sport or domestic violence. Guys like Michael Wilbon and Stephen A. Smith — who I have respected as reporters and columnists for a long time — are simply throwing these things out there for shock factor … to gain ratings and notoriety as the media helps stir this story into a big deal.

— And the former football players’ comments on all of this? It’s laughable. For instance, former Jacksonville QB Mark Brunell — who lost an AFC title game to NE in 1996 — said he “did not believe what Tom [Brady] had to say.” Why don’t you at least have the guts to call him a liar? Jerome Bettis, who also lost a couple of big ones to the Patriots as a Pittsburgh Steeler, and whose teams reportedly had rampant PED use throughout the roster: “I’m disappointed in you, Tom Brady.” Really, fellas? I’m disappointed in the four-letter network that gave you a voice.

— Get a clue. We don’t like it because it affects us. But it is a story because of Spygate. It is a story because of the tuck rule. It is a story even because of the 1982 Snow Plow Game. It is a story because the Patriots win — a lot — especially over the past 20 years. It’s a story because everyone loves to see the king fall on his crown, so to speak, whenever possible. Cheating? If I wanted to cheat, I’d do more than just deflate some footballs … and I think the same holds true for Bill Belichick. My guess is he knows exactly what other teams do during the course of a season — to his team and others — but he’s not a rat. Like former J-E-T-S coach Eric Mangini was a few years ago, and like some in other organizations are now.

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Read More: Bill Belichick, Deflategate, Super Bowl XLIX, Tom Brady
Thinking Out Loud: No reason for new owners to move PawSox 01.09.15 at 3:12 pm ET
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Rooke_JohnThinking out loud … while wondering whatever happened to Nelson de la Rosa.

— The U.S. Olympic Committee’s decision to select Boston as the potential host city for the 2024 Olympic Games is a stunner. I’m speechless. OK, not really. But it doesn’t mean the Olympic Games are coming here. It means there’s a chance they do. Boston has to beat out Paris, Berlin, Rome, Istanbul, Melbourne and perhaps South Africa, too — and Paris would be celebrating the 100th anniversary of its previous role as host (1924). Frankly, that’€™s tough competition. But in beating out Washington, San Francisco and two-time Olympic host city Los Angeles for the U.S. candidate bid, well, that’s still wicked pissah.

— This will be debated ad nauseam over the next few weeks, months and years — the International Olympic Committee won’t make the call on the host city until September of 2017 — but if the U.S. is expecting real New Englanders to embrace this bid? To get behind it? To root for it? To show national pride? To spend their tax dollars? To willingly put up with construction congestion and traffic snarls? Well, the latter already is a way of life around here. Whatevah.

— After watching a story on the local news this past week, I cannot imagine, under any set of circumstances, why any potential new owner(s) of the Pawtucket Red Sox would consider moving the team from Pawtucket and McCoy Stadium. This would be devastating news for Pawtucket, and for Rhode Island. Even if the stadium lease can be voided (reportedly it was renewed to 2021), why would a new ownership group do that?

— Part of the attractiveness of a place like McCoy — and many other minor league ballparks — comes from the “old school” feel the stadium gives you and gives to the sport — even after the wildly successful renovations to the old stadium back in 1999. The prices remain affordable for those who can’t (or won’t) spend the big bucks on a trip to Fenway. The team is ultra-competitive, the players often make the short trip up I-95 to help the big club. These factors make the relationship between the big league Sox and the minor league Sox one of the most unique in all of sport — and, of course, in all of baseball.

— If the new owners are from the Boston Red Sox ownership group — reported to be the case — what more do they need here? To be closer to Fenway? More money? Higher ticket prices? New fan base? Total control and world domination? It’s already a “model franchise,” considered one of the best in the country. Where would a new stadium be located — and would the community support the team like Pawtucket has done through thick and thin since 1977, when the late Ben Mondor purchased a dirty piece of coal and transformed it into an absolute diamond gem of an organization?

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Read More: John McDonald, Mike Piazza, Olympics, Pawtucket Red Sox
The year in Boston sports: Most memorable games of 2014 12.31.14 at 11:13 am ET
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This past year was not always the most friendly to Boston-area teams, but that did not mean 2014 was not without the excitement of thrilling games.

The Red Sox battled through a rebuilding season, while the Patriots and Bruins excelled and played in many important games, including the playoffs. The Revolution even made it all the way to the MLS Cup and Boston College and Harvard had exciting upsets that shocked the college sports world.

Here are the most memorable games, wins and losses, for Boston’s teams during the 2014 calendar year.

10. (tie) April 4, MLB: Brewers 6, Red Sox 2

An early ceremony was spoiled by a late comeback during the home opener at Fenway Park. The Red Sox celebrated their 2013 World Series title and received their rings before this game, but that was the only positive on this day.

Unlike their 2013 run, there was no magic ending on this day. Edward Mujica entered the ninth inning in a 2-2 game and imploded, allowing four runs in the final frame. The Brewers celebrated a 6-2 win and the Red Sox were left shaking their heads.

10. (tie) Sept. 28, MLB: Yankees 9, Red Sox 5

A down year for the Red Sox concluded with a farewell to Yankees great Derek Jeter, as the longtime shortstop was honored at Fenway Park before the season’s last game. During the ceremony, Jeter was greeted by current and former Red Sox, received a pair of boots from his former coach Brian Butterfield and was presented with a check for $22,222.22 for his Turn 2 Foundation. Michelle Brooks Thompson from “The Voice” finished off the pregame event with a rendition of Aretha Franklin’s song “Respect.”

Jeter drove in a run with an infield single during his second plate appearance and was then removed from the game, receiving a standing ovation from the crowd. The Red Sox, as they did many times in 2014, lost, dropping a 9-5 decision to finish the season with a 71-91 record.

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Read More: Derek Jeter, Dougie Hamilton, Jon Lester, mike napoli
Top Boston Sports Stories of 2014, No. 1: Tom Brady overcomes early struggles, leads Patriots to AFC’s top seed at 10:31 am ET
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Over the final days of the year, WEEI.com has been counting down the top 14 stories of 2014 in Boston sports. This is No. 1: Tom Brady overcomes early struggles, leads Patriots to AFC’s top seed. To read other stories in this series, click here.

Tom Brady overcome a sluggish start to lead the Patriots to the No. 1 seed in the AFC heading into the playoffs. (Jared Wickerham/Getty Images)

Tom Brady overcame a sluggish start to lead the Patriots to the No. 1 seed in the AFC. (Jared Wickerham/Getty Images)

Tom Brady finished the 2013 season with more than 4,000 passing yards for the sixth time in his career and looked to repeat this performance in 2014. But the Patriots quarterback had his doubters before the season began.

In a column for ESPN and during an interview with Dennis & Callahan, Sam Monson argued that Brady wasn’t among the elite NFL quarterbacks anymore. He said Brady was in a decline and no longer in the prime of his career.

About two months later, offensive lineman Logan Mankins was traded to the Buccaneers, leaving a void on the offensive line. Whether or not the trade played a factor, Brady struggled and appeared to fuel Monson’s claim from the get-go against the Dolphins in Week 1.

Brady completed 51.8 percent of his passes and was kept off of the scoreboard for the entire second half. He didn’t throw an interception, but he was strip-sacked twice by Cameron Wake and had trouble connecting with receivers when the Dolphins rushed him into quick decisions.

“Truthfully, I don’t think we were really jelling anywhere,” Brady said. “There wasn’t much positive from the quarterback position, the receiver position, the tight end position and the running back position. None of us can play like that and expect to win. All of us have to go out and do a much better job than we did today. We’ve got to take the coaching, understand what we need to do better and then go out and execute next week.”

Added Brady the following day on Dennis & Callahan: “When we’re open down the field I’ve got to hit them. I think that’s how I look at it. We’ve got to make more plays down the field to get more chunks, to shorten the field a little bit. It certainly wasn’t our best day passing the ball yesterday.”

Brady and the Patriots did recover somewhat for two straight wins against the Vikings and Raiders, although the quarterback threw for a combined 383 yards and two touchdowns. NFL analysts noted Brady’s play was unimpressive in the first three weeks. One of Brady’s former teammates, Tedy Bruschi, said he worried that New England’s mostly inexperienced offensive line would be a hindrance to Brady going forward.

“There’s been only limited improvement over the first few weeks, so that’s somewhat discouraging,” Bruschi said. “Is there still plenty of time? Yes. But I really worry. I really worry about the health of Tom Brady and the interior offensive line and what they’re doing there. To me, inside-out, it starts at the center position, which is a very valuable position now in the National Football League. It’s getting to be just as valuable as the left tackle, how you have to solidify the center of that pocket and the running game because that’s where all the pressure is going to come from. Especially when you have a pocket passer, which is what Tom is.”

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Read More: Bill Belichick, Darrelle Revis, Rodney Harrison, Tedy Bruschi