During his weekly appearance on sports radio WEEI, Patriots quarterback Tom Brady acknowledged the work of offensive line coach Dante Scarnecchia. In Saturday's win, the Patriots had to mix and match along the offensive line when starting left tackle Matt Light was a late scratch because of an ankle injury, and then lost All-Pro Logan Mankins on the second series.
"It was challenging to lose Matt. We prepared all week with him there and then he wasn't able to go. And with Logan going out there in the early part of the game, we ended up losing out on a lot of plays we had on the call sheet, and really not figuring out exactly how we needed to play the game until really the second half," Brady told Dale Arnold and Bob Ryan, who were filling in as hosts of the "Dennis & Callahan" program.
"I thought there were some adjustments that were made and the guys that went in there -- Nate Solder moved to left tackle and Marcus Cannon came in and played right tackle -- all those guys played hard and were committed to what we were trying to do. Ultimately, it was good enough.
"I can't say enough about Dante. His leadership at that position. He really handles the offensive line and coaches those guys extremely hard and he expects nothing less than their best every single day in practice and obviously in the game. I think you really see that. We lost [Dan] Koppen earlier in the year. We lost [Dan] Connolly. Then [Ryan] Wendell went out and Nick McDonald played center. There have been quite a few moving parts in that group, and they always seem to rise to the occassion. It was a great effort by all those guys up front."
On a different note, after both of his touchdown runs, Brady didn't spike the ball as he had the prior week in Denver. Instead, he took both to the sideline.
Chirstmas gifts for his sons, perhaps?
"One of them was a little slippery, so I didn't want to throw that ball any more. So I said 'take this one out of the game,' " Brady explained to Arnold and Ryan, before joking: "These boys have enough presents, between the Legos they got, and Batman. They made out pretty good at Christmas."