admin / June 6, 2018

Has Tom Brady simply had enough of Bill Belichick?

When Seth Wickersham of ESPN reported back in January that serious cracks had developed in the perennially successful relationship between Patriots quarterback Tom Brady, Patriots coach Bill Belichick, and Patriots owner Robert Kraft, it seemed odd to think that something that had worked so well for 18 years would suddenly not be working.

But something’s missing all right, as evidenced by the fact that Brady isn’t working. With every other starting quarterback fully engaged in his team’s offseason program, Brady remains absent, possibly for a variety of reasons that include his low pay in relation to the dramatic increase in the market since he signed his most recent deal, the still-unexplained decision to bench cornerback Malcolm Butler for Super Bowl LII (possibly keeping Brady from a sixth ring despite throwing for 505 yards that day), and the reality that nearly two decades of dealing with Belichick may be much more than enough.

Will Brady be as deferential as he always has been? Will there be even more friction, especially if Belichick tries to needle him about not being present for OTAs?

Many think the intrigue will be over when Brady finally reports for mandatory minicamp and/or training camp. It could be that the fun will only be beginning.

Expect a group that includes free-agent signee Jon Bostic, Tyler Matakevich and possibly even rookie Terrell Edmunds as part of the committee that will be in Shazier’s spot at inside linebacker when the defending AFC North champions open the 2018 season in Cleveland.

The front office felt so comfortable with the idea it passed on selecting a linebacker in last month’s draft, the first time in nearly a decade the Steelers didn’t use one of their picks on a position coach Mike Tomlin considers among the most vital on the field.

That’s fine by Bostic. The well-traveled 27-year-old signed a two-year deal in March following a productive if injury marred season in Indianapolis. Bostic’s arrival appeared to be for depth purposes but when the draft came and went, he now finds himself with as good a shot as anyone as lining up next to veteran Vince Williams. While he kept tabs on the draft, he didn’t exactly celebrate when Pittsburgh didn’t pick up a linebacker.

At the end of the day, I don’t get paid to do that type of stuff, Bostic said during organized team activities this week. All I can control is me preparing, when my number is called upon, make sure that I’m ready.

FILED UNDER : Oakland Raiders

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