In the couple days after Miami Dolphins linebacker Joey Porter called out the New England Patriots as cheaters and quarterback Tom Brady as a darling, the response from Foxborough, Mass., was a collective shrug.
NBC Sports analyst and former Patriots safety Rodney Harrison piped up Sunday night to say Porter was "pretty stupid or crazy to make a comment like that. If you go into that locker room, you best believe, behind those closed doors, those guys are saying 'We're going to take Joey Porter away.' The last thing these guys need is added motivation."
Monday morning, Brady confirmed that was precisely the case.
On his weekly visit with "Dennis & Callahan" on Boston radio station WEEI, Brady said Porter's remarks got the Patriots even more jacked up for the Dolphins.
"It's really motivating for our team throughout the course of the week and into the game when you hear that kind of stuff," Brady said. "I think the guys take it to heart, and the coaches take it to heart."
The Patriots won 27-17 in Gillette Stadium. Porter was invisible, finishing with zero tackles or sacks. Rookie tackle Sebastian Vollmer, filling in for two-time Pro Bowler Matt Light, handled Porter for most of the afternoon.
"He's a great player. He's been a great player for a long time," Brady said. "But it's always great when you come out of the game and you understand that you kept one of their best players from [having] an impact on the game.
"We have to see him again in four weeks. So I'm sure he'll be juiced up for that game. Hopefully, we can go out there and perform the same way."