Mrs. Brady's wisdom helped raise a generation.
She never actually said "don't play ball in the house."
But she did offer plenty of important guidance for kids and their parents.
"Fun is fun ... Like I said, 'If you carry a joke too far, somebody can get hurt.'"
The joke was on the Patriots Monday night in Carolina.
And Mrs. Brady knows it.
That would be Galynn Brady.
Tom's mom is a genius.
According to the Patriots' quarterback, his mom believes there should have been a penalty called on the final play of Monday night's game. "My mom thought it was a penalty, does that count?" Brady answered when asked Wednesday if he had seen the replay of that play.
And Mrs. Brady is never wrong.
Just ask John Brenkus. His crew at ESPN's "Sport Science" demonstrated that the interference denied Rob Gronkowski a shot to make a play on Brady's final pass attempt, which was ultimately intercepted.
Wicked smaht stuff for sure.
But some of us didn't need to recreate the Manhattan Project to confirm the obvious.
The simple words of Mrs. Brady were enough.
Even when losing is such a mother.
"Now we're on to Denver," said Bill Belichick Wednesday.
At least twice.
The storyline of Sunday night's game against the Broncos and Peyton Manning has multiple tracks.
There's Peyton vs. Satan.
There's the short week coming off You Know What On Monday Night.
There's the battle for QB supremacy in the AFC.
There's the scary thought of the Patriots "Down To the Last Drop" depleted defense trying to stop Manning's Hydra offense.
And the main event: The Return of Wes Welker, whether or not he plays.
It was time to move on from the Great Carolina Screw Job of 2013 sometime on Tuesday afternoon. It clearly time to move on from the bungled departure of Welker, as well.
Assume, for the moment, that Welker plays Sunday night and he has anything to the success that, say, Steve Smith, enjoyed against New England Monday night.
Or let's say he goes full Megatron and pulls in seven TD passes and chews up 300-and-something yards.
There is little angst, anger, consternation or vitriol left to vent from this deal. The Patriots blew it in letting Welker go, especially to the Broncos. This is not news in this space or anywhere else.
How much do the Patriots miss Welker? A lot. Matching up the numbers between Welker and his pseudo-replacement Danny Amendola doesn't even begin to demonstrate the absence of Welker on this team. Welker's presence was dearly missed in New England's three losses. Just envision that final pass the other night with both Welker and Gronk on Brady's radar screen.
Binky 1 and Binky 2 with the game on the line.
Welker's absence has drastically impacted New England on third down. The Patriots are converting 35.6 percent of their third-down attempts 10 games into this season. They hit on 48.6 percent of their third-down attempts in all 16 games in 2012.
In defense of the team's dropping the ball on Welker, Brady's "showponies, unicorns and where's the beef" miraculous TD reception to Kenbrell Thompkins against the Saints likely would not have happened if Welker was on the field. That act of desperation turned into victory.
Even if Welker isn't playing because the concussion he suffered Sunday night against the Chiefs and Amendola is skipping up and down the field catching everything thrown his way by Brady, the Patriots will still have to find a way to contain Demaryius Thomas. The 6-foot-3 Thomas is on pace for 96 catches and 15 touchdowns this season and is averaging 15.2 yards per catch.
Once you strip away all the drama and consternation surrounding the return of Welker [again, assuming he does play] to New England, Thomas poses just as much of a threat. Both WRs have nine TDs and have almost exactly the same amount of catches this season [61-60 in favor of Welker], but Thomas has gained 914 yards receiving to Welker's 648. Welker also trails Eric Decker in yards receiving [he's got 792] and in average per catch [14.7 to 10.6].
Now the thought of Belichick treating Welker just like any other player doesn't seem to fit into this picture. The coaching trauma Belichick experienced Monday with the flag going down and then back up would be dwarfed by horror generated from watching Welker tear up the Patriots. Or even worse, Welker hauling in the game-winning pass and flipping the ball to his former coach as he and Manning trot off the field together
Think End of Death Star [revised 2004 version].
This week has been long on drama and short on cerebral substance, save for the science lesson from Brenkus and his staff. And that's not just from precincts in New England. The NFL's contorted explanation and rationalization for the "non-call call" was far worse than any visceral, emotional reaction here or elsewhere.
The Patriots are Bronco-focused, and probably have been since they got off the plane coming back from Carolina. Just like Brady has struggled and stumbled before eventually producing despite not having Welker available as his favorite target of choice.
It's time to move on from both losses, what happened in Carolina Monday and what happened last spring when Welker slipped through the Patriots' hands and ended up in Devner.
In both cases, there's no choice. There's a game Sunday night and much is at stake for the Patriots.
As [Mr. and] Mrs. Brady once said:
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