Tom Brady Says He Won't 'Judge' Antonio Brown; Adjusting Will Be 'A Challenge'

Joseph Zucker@@JosephZuckerFeatured ColumnistSeptember 10, 2019

FOXBOROUGH, MASSACHUSETTS - SEPTEMBER 08: Tom Brady #12 of the New England Patriots looks on during the game between the New England Patriots and the Pittsburgh Steelers at Gillette Stadium on September 08, 2019 in Foxborough, Massachusetts. (Photo by Maddie Meyer/Getty Images)
Maddie Meyer/Getty Images

While Antonio Brown represents an obvious upgrade to the New England Patriots passing game, Tom Brady acknowledged the seven-time Pro Bowler could face a difficult adjustment period early on.

The Patriots announced Monday they signed Brown—one day after they defeated the Pittsburgh Steelers 33-3 in Week 1. That left him with less than a week to practice with the team and learn the playbook before Sunday's game against the Miami Dolphins.

In an interview with Westwood One's Jim Gray (h/t Pro Football Talk's Mike Florio), Brady said the absence of a training camp and preseason will initially make life difficult for Brown:

"That's definitely a challenge, that's just the time of the year and we are going to deal with those from now to the end of the season. We are just going to deal with those the best way we can. You'd love to have a training camp or an offseason to learn, but that's just not our reality and we are going to do the best we can possibly do with the time that we have."

Brady added he'll try to help Brown acclimate by meeting with him "as much as we possibly can." Al Michaels reported on Sunday Night Football that Brady offered Brown a place at his house to ease the transition:


It's a big thumbs from @TomBrady on the Antonio Brown deal. "I'm a million percent in." #PITvsNE https://t.co/sLnxzJvknu

Brady also said he's keeping an open mind about Brown following his eventful tenure with the Oakland Raiders.

"You don't judge anything," Brady said. "I'm not judging anything before I have a chance to go out and practice and prepare. You know, Antonio, meeting him today, I really enjoyed being around him. He's a very smart football player, knows how to play the game."

New England was in the same position with Josh Gordon last year. The team acquired him from the Cleveland Browns following Week 2, and Gordon made his debut in Week 4. He caught two passes for 32 yards and finished the season third on the team in receiving yards (720).

Assuming Brown plays in Miami, the Patriots couldn't have asked for a better matchup. The Dolphins allowed 59 points and 378 passing yards in a 59-10 loss to the Baltimore Ravens on Sunday.