FOXBOROUGH, Mass. – BenJarvus Green-Ellis, when asked about MVP-in-waiting quarterback Tom Brady, couldn’t come up with enough superlatives to describe Brady.
One thing about Brady, though, has unnerved the Patriots running back at times.
“He talks to me during plays,” said Green-Ellis, shaking his head almost in disbelief of what he has experienced.
“When he has the ball in his hand and going to throw it, he’ll talk to me about what’s going on,” said Green-Ellis. “The play might be designed for me to stay in and block, but I’ll hear him say, ‘Get out and go.’ So I go [out to catch a pass].”
That Brady talks to his running backs as plays are unfolding reflects his command of the game when he has the football in his grasp.
One of the big pre-game story lines Sunday was how much opportunity Brady would have to be in command, because the Patriots had already clinched the No. 1 seed in the AFC playoffs. Brady departed for good after the first series of the third quarter, while also coming out of the game for four snaps in the second quarter in a move that was pre-planned to thrust backup Brian Hoyer into the game unexpectedly.
No matter that it was a so-called "meaningless" season-finale, Brady played as if everything was on the line. He finished 10 of 16 for 199 yards and two touchdowns.
"When you're standing in the huddle and you're looking at 10 other guys who are really determined to do their job, it's my job to bring the energy and the enthusiasm, whether it's Wednesday practice or an offseason conditioning program run," Brady said. "If it's dominos playing those fat offensive linemen, I have to beat those guys. I don't think it ever gets turned off. I just think you want to win, so that's always the goal."
In a light moment, Brady then realized what he said about his offensive linemen.
"Don't tell them I said they were fat," he cracked. "They're strong."