So much for his injured left knee.
Two days after spraining it, the New England star was perfect before throwing an incompletion on his last pass in the Patriots' 25-21 exhibition victory over the Tampa Bay Buccaneers on Friday night.
He also threw his first touchdown to new top wide receiver
"Tom's like a coach out there on the field," Amendola said. "He knows every intricacy of the offense. He helps young guys out a lot. He's a leader."
Brady, who bypassed waiting reporters after Thursday's joint walkthrough with the Buccaneers (0-2), did it again after his outstanding performance. He left the locker room quickly without holding his usual postgame news conference and the team offered no explanation.
An MRI on his left knee had been negative and he participated fully in the walkthrough.
Patriots coach Bill Belichick shrugged off an opportunity to make his first comments about his reaction to the play Wednesday when left tackle
"We're so far past that," he said. "We're way beyond that."
Brady's nearly perfect performance for the Patriots (2-0) proved that.
"He sure looked good, but we messed up some things," Tampa Bay coach Greg Schiano said. "Even if you play great against Tom Brady he'll complete (passes)."
Bucs quarterback Josh Freeman also started and worked two possessions but had a much rougher time against the team they'll face in the third game of the regular season. He was sacked three times and completed only two of three passes before rookie Mike Glennon took over.
"We just have to find a way to overcome adversity," Freeman said. "We battled to the end."
Amendola, signed as a free agent from St. Louis, caught six passes for 71 yards, including a 26-yard touchdown on the game's first series. Brady completed all eight of his passes for 72 yards, even adding a 2-point conversion pass to rookie tight end
Then Brady connected on his first three throws on his next possession, reaching 107 yards passing for the night, before missing Amendola on third-and-7.
Brady has played four series in two games, starting with a 31-22 win over Philadelphia, and completed 18 of 20 passes for 172 yards.
"He's worked hard to learn our offense, a little different than what they did at Nevada," Belichick said. "He's got to learn how to be an on-the-line tight end, but he's making progress. He's got a long way to go."
Mallett completed 12 of 20 passes for 137 yards against the club that allowed the most yards passing in the NFL last season then gave way to
"It was definitely something I shouldn't have thrown," he said. "You want to do your best and play to the best of your ability and have it all go right, and sometimes it doesn't. You just have to keep going."
Tebow also ran six times for 30 yards.
Freeman was under pressure from the start eight days after playing well in a 44-16 loss to the Baltimore Ravens.
He was sacked by
New England's defense made another big play against Glennon when rookie
With New England up 25-18, Tebow's overthrown pass was intercepted by Mason Robinson. The Bucs scored on Derek Dimke's second field goal, a 23-yarder.
NOTES: Among the Bucs recovering from injuries who didn't play were cornerback Darrelle Revis, placekicker Lawrence Tynes and offensive guard Carl Nicks. ... Patriots defensive backs
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