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Tom Brady: Sunday will determine if Patriots have answered challenge

FOXBOROUGH, Mass. -- The last time New England Patriots quarterback Tom Brady addressed beat reporters, it was after the team's season-opening loss to the Kansas City Chiefs, and he said a turnaround starts with attitude and competitiveness. He also said he was among those who needed to do better.

Six days later, Brady is reserving judgment on how the Patriots have responded.

"We’ll see. Sunday is the important day," he said, referencing the team's road game against the New Orleans Saints.

The Patriots got after it during Wednesday's practice, which was a full-pads session. It was the first time players were back on the practice field since Thursday's loss, which was a longer than normal stretch, and some players talked about using the time to recover physically.

Asked if he sensed that the Patriots' collective attitude is in the right place, Brady said, "I hope so. We work pretty hard for three hours a week. We’ve got to be at our best mentally, physically, emotionally. ... It’s their home opener. We’re going to be challenged in a big way, so we’ve got to meet the challenge."

The Patriots didn't in the fourth quarter of Week 1, when the Chiefs scored 21 unanswered points to turn a 27-21 deficit into a 42-27 victory. As disappointing as that was for the team, Brady believes the Patriots can become a more mentally tough team in such situations.

"I think you’re always trying to make improvement in every area," he said. "What you are in September is different than what you’re going to be as the season goes on. You’re trying to see where your deficiencies are, and you’re trying to make improvements.

"Obviously, what we did the other night is not good enough by any means, in any particular phase of the game, at any position. When you get outscored by 21 points or outgained by 200 yards in the fourth quarter, there’s a lot of things that need adjusting. Hopefully we can identify those things as quickly as possible and gain confidence in what we’re doing so we can go out there and execute well and play well against a very good team.

"This team isn’t going to make it easy on us. We have to go earn it, just like the last team. There’s not a bunch of easy plays out there. There’s no magic play you can call. You’ve just got to make no excuse and go make the play. We’re all going to be challenged with that opportunity."

Brady agreed that it is essentially a matter of will.

"I think that’s important, and you bring it every day. There’s urgency in practice, and the coaches put a lot of pressure on us. Veteran players and leaders put a lot of pressure on you because you’re trying to perform at a very high level," he said. "When you get beat the way we got beat, I think that sat with everyone for a very long time. We’re going to have to go do something about it. I mean, no one else can do it for us. We’re the only guys in the locker room. No one else is putting on the uniform. It’s only us. It’s up to us to go do something about it, so that’s what we have to be able to do."