New England Patriots wide receiver Brian Tyms provides a boost to the team’s receiving corps with his size and ability to get down field. Head coach Bill Belichick credited assistant Michael Lombardi, who coached Tyms in Cleveland, as being a factor in bringing Tyms to New England.
"[Lombardi] definitely helped," Belichick said. "We didn’t really know a lot about him, but I think we were kind of surprised that he was available, especially given Cleveland’s receiver situation after they had a couple things happen up there. During camp we obviously knew about the four games he would miss, but we felt he would be a good competitive player for us up in camp. He was all of that and now he is on the roster, so that definitely helped lead us to him.
"And Tyms has really done a good job," Belichick added. "He’s come in and worked really hard. He’s one of the first guys here and last ones to leave. He’s diligent about his work and preparation, and in the time that he missed, as soon as that was over he came back and was right here at 6:30 in the morning ready to watch film, work out, get back into it. It’s kind of been like that since he returned a couple weeks ago -- the week prior to the Cincinnati game."
At 6-foot-3, 204 pounds, Tyms is a tall and long receiver with high-end speed. Before serving his four-game suspension, Tyms had a strong rapport with rookie quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo throughout the preseason. Despite not taking snaps with quarterback Tom Brady until his return from suspension, Tyms made his mark Sunday on a 43-yard touchdown pass from Brady in triple coverage.
"Tyms was able to climb and get on top of Graham, and Gilmore is to the outside of him, so the coverage looked tight -- it was tight -- but I think the key for Tom was when Tyms was able to get past Graham and he definitely was able to get over the top of him," Belichick said. "He was able to get behind Graham, so Tom was able to throw the ball away from Gilmore and Gilmore could not get over the top on the catch."
Tyms showed impressive body control, awareness and hands to make the big touchdown grab -- the first of his career.
"He has good speed and an ability to get down the field," offensive coordinator Josh McDaniels said. "Many of those situations become a one-on-one situation, and the defender is going to go up there and fight for the ball and you have to go right up and fight with him.
"He made a really nice play yesterday, and the coverage wasn’t bad. Gilmore had an opportunity to get the ball out there, and Brian went up and hung on to it. I thought that was a good play, and he has shown throughout the course of the preseason, the early portions of practice and this week that he is capable of doing those things."
Belichick noted that Tyms' work ethic and attitude are positives for the team.
"He’s been a real hard-working, diligent, do-extra type of kid," Belichick said. "He's been good to be around. He brings a lot of good energy to the team, the position and his approach to the game."
"I like having him on the team."