Pats razz Brady over GQ issue

Published 12:00 am Monday, August 29, 2005

The Associated Press

FOXBORO, Mass. - Tom Brady showed a strong arm Tuesday after a lightened workload fed speculation that it might be sore. His ego, though, took a beating.

His New England Patriots teammates razzed him about photos in the morning paper — one showing him holding a goat, another of him reclining with three dogs — that accompanied an article in the current issue of GQ magazine in which he appears on the cover.

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"They got imitations of everybody. They’re doing like the Silence of the Lambs," the quarterback said. "It was pretty funny."

He even had to take snaps from center Dan Koppen, who had one of the pictures taped to the back of his jersey.

"I was laughing the whole practice," Brady said. "But he who laughs last laughs best, so those guys don’t know what’s in store."

Despite his two Super Bowl MVP awards, Brady doesn’t place himself above his teammates. They play pranks on each other and win and lose — mostly win — on the field together. So he’s glad he’ll be back with them Thursday night when he starts against New Orleans after sitting out last Friday night’s exhibition opener, a 23-13 win at Cincinnati.

"You don’t like to see your guys take the field without you because it makes you feel like, man, maybe they really don’t need me out there, which is kind of humbling," Brady said.

He hasn’t thrown as much as he has in past training camps. Brady said Tuesday the coaching staff wants to limit his throws now so his arm doesn’t get tired late in the season.

He did practice Sunday, threw very little Monday morning, then participated fully in the Monday evening practice. In Tuesday’s single session, he threw again.

"You saw him throw that 30-yard in (route), so he looks good. It got there" wide receiver Deion Branch said. &uot;No worries for me.

&uot;Trust me, all the receivers would be kind of down if something was wrong and I’m pretty sure the team (would, too). Oh, yeah, he’s good. There’s nothing wrong with him.&uot;

Doug Flutie also is expected to play Thursday after only Rohan Davey and Matt Cassel, the other quarterbacks in camp, faced Cincinnati.

Flutie and Cassel are new to the team this year, and coach Bill Belichick wants to give them enough practice time so he can judge them.