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Tom Brady Post-Game Press Conference 11-24-2002

Q: The first 28 minutes was pretty flawless football. It seemed like everything was really clicking for you and it was the kind of start that you guys talk about.

TB: Yeah, that's right. When you get off to a fast start, it takes a lot for the other team to overcome it.

Q: Anything in particular that really keyed the fast start? Was it a situation where you had the whole playbook open and you really could pick and choose anything you wanted to run?

TB: Yeah, definitely. Charlie [Weis] called the plays, and we executed them the way we expected to. When we do that well and I make the right reads and those guys run good routes and I throw it well, it looks pretty good. Antowain [Smith] was running hard. Antowain had a pretty good day. We converted early on third downs and we got them in a hole. It was 21-0 at one point and the game was pretty much under control. It's funny how fast things change.

Q: You must have been thinking, 'It can't be that easy' when you went up 21-0.

TB: I really don't think you ever think that, because you know how explosive they are. They've got Daunte Culpepper, Randy Moss and Michael Bennett, D'Wayne Bates, those guys are pretty good. I don't think we ever really felt we were in that much control. If we had been able to score before the half and make it 28-0, that would have been in a little better control, It was 21-7 at the half, and it can go either way at that point.

Q: How frustrating was it to get that turnover and miss the chance to make it 28-0 and then see them score right before the half?

TB: Yeah, if you can get up 28-0 in the first half, that's … It would have been pretty good for us at halftime to go in up 28-0 instead of 21-7. We've got to take care of that better. When we've got the ball, we need to put the nail in the coffin. That's not something that we did, but we'll learn from that.

Q: How much did the wind affect not just the act of throwing, but the decisions as to what to throw to?

TB: It didn't affect me much at all.

Q: It seems like Christian Fauria is becoming one of your favorite targets and has a knack for making big plays.

TB: Christian's a great player. He's a lot like certain guys like Kevin Faulk and Troy Brown, not that everyone's not like that, but he's just exceptional at it. Christian's another one of those guys that really finds holes and really understands when the ball's coming to him, just based on the coverage and the different alignments and the plays that are in for him. He made a good play on that first one, staying alive, and the second one was kind of designed for him. It was a good day for him.

Q: He said that teams are starting to look for him more in the red zone, yet he scored two touchdowns today.

TB: It's good for Christian because he's such a competitor out there. He wants to help so much. We've got three pretty good tight ends in Cam [Cleeland] and Dan [Graham]. Christian probably doesn't get as much action as he'd like, and when he does get in there, he always seems to do pretty well.

Q: Usually you have an evening to enjoy these wins, but with the Thursday game, have you started thinking about Detroit already?

TB: I think we have to, because it's coming pretty quick. Tomorrow I think we're going to come in and have a walk through and even get the game plan, which is very unique. It's so different. Tuesday we actually have a full practice. On Tuesday usually we're sleeping in and trying to rest our bodies, but we'll be out there slugging it around again. Then Wednesday we travel, so it's not just a short week, it's a really short week. There's not a lot of time to enjoy this and we know that playing in Detroit on Thanksgiving Day, that's going to be tough. It will be real tough. That's their game every year, so they always want to play well.

Q: Do you think you caught them of guard with those two screen passes on that last scoring drive when they might have been expecting you to go a bit further down the field with the wind?

TB: I don't know. It was a good call at the right time.

Q: For so many weeks, the offense has lifted this team and gotten it back in a game. This week, it seemed like the defense really stepped it up when it counted.

TB: The defense did. It's exciting for us when they're there on the field with you at the end of the game and you've watched them make play after play. Lawyer [Milloy], we know how bad he wants in on the action, and Victor [Green], Ty [Law] and Terrell Buckley and all those guys, Roman [Phifer], Willie [McGinest], [Richard] Seymour, those guys are pretty good players. We feel pretty comfortable on offense knowing that we've got those guys on defense. Overall, we're going to have to continue as a team to compliment each other. The defense played a great game today.

Q: What do you think was the difference in the offense in the first half as opposed to the second half? It was 21 points to three. Did they change things defensively on you?

TB: No. I think it was just our execution. I think there were plays there, we just didn't execute them the way we would have liked to.

Q: When you're on a roll like you were in the first half, how anxious were you to get back on the field and get the ball again?

TB: Very anxious. We're looking to, like I said before, really put the nail in the coffin. We got a few turnovers, and that turnover that we got could have pretty much ended the game there in the first half, I would have thought, had we punched that one in. Unfortunately, we didn't, so they went down the other way. When you've got them on their heels, you really want to keep them on their heels. When you smell blood, you've got to go after it and really attack. I think sometimes we get out there and maybe we get a bit lackadaisical in our focus, and that's not something that you can do.

Q: How important was it to win today going into the short week?

TB: We won the game. You realize how tough it is every week to win games. You can say you should win this one and win this one, but they're all tough. Every team we play plays us pretty well. They have played us well. We went to Chicago and everyone thought that would be a … that was a tough game. All these games are tough, and each week it seems like we get everyone's best shot. That's what we're expecting and that's what we're anticipating. Hopefully they get our best shot. It seems like when they do, we win. When we don't play as well as we like, we lose. We have to concentrate on us playing well and not so much on what they're doing. We focus on our execution and doing the right things in the correct situations.

Q: Is there the same sense of urgency about this team as you had last year down the stretch?

TB: It's tough to compare. There are totally different circumstances. The teams we're playing are different and we have so many new guys on our team. There's definitely a sense of urgency now. Not that there wasn't five weeks ago, but now, it's a five-game season. Everything's in front of us. We're going to have a chance to play every team in our division and we're going to have the ultimate decision on what happens to our destiny or fate or whatever happens down the stretch. I think that's a positive you take from this. We're 6-5 with a chance to go 7-5. That's enough sense of urgency for me, I know that much.

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