For three weeks now, the mounting hits on Tom Brady have been costly on multiple levels. First, there was the Achilles injury from the Patriots quarterback getting twisted up underneath Oakland Raiders pass rusher Khalil Mack. And then, the Miami Dolphins gashed up his arm, banged up his hand and who knows what else as they appeared to try to hurt him as much as hit him. On Sunday against the Buffalo Bills, three sacks cost the Patriots upward of 12 points, and Brady was also picked off for the second consecutive week due to a pressurized pocket. The Pats pulled themselves out of a similar stretch once this season, and there isn’t much time for them to figure out how to do it again. Brady’s offense will encounter the dirty Dolphins again on Monday Night Football before a short-week turnaround to face the Pittsburgh Steelers in a matchup in which mistakes will matter and home-field advantage should be at stake. From there, the Patriots will again face the Bills, who admitted they will be out for revenge after tight end Rob Gronkowski’s cheap shot on cornerback Tre’Davious White, and conclude the regular season against the rival New York Jets, who hit Brady five times in Week 6. The hits aren’t an epidemic, but they are the chief concern for a Patriots team that has so few vulnerabilities as it gears up for a potentially historic playoff push. The Pats could become the first franchise to twice win three Super Bowls in a four-year span.
As hits keep coming, Patriots must limit pressure on Tom Brady
Boston Herald | Dec 5