Brady, out for season, maintains limited presence at QBs meeting

Updated: September 16, 2008, 6:36 PM ET
Associated Press

FOXBOROUGH, Mass. -- Tom Brady, out for the season with a knee injury, is still trying to help his teammates win games.

Last season's NFL MVP took part in the New England Patriots quarterbacks meeting Saturday, the day before Matt Cassel started in his place in the team's 19-10 win over the New York Jets.

"Last week, he came in a little bit at the end of the week. He was in our quarterbacks meeting on Saturday and stuff like that," coach Bill Belichick said in a conference call Tuesday. "Going forward this week that might be the same, it might be a little bit different. It goes depending on how his rehab schedule goes and what we're doing at the times when he is available."

A Patriots spokesman declined comment Tuesday on whether Brady had undergone surgery. The Boston Globe reported last week that Brady had torn anterior cruciate and medial collateral ligaments in his left knee and likely would have surgery in about a month.

Brady was hurt midway through the first quarter of the Patriots' season-opening 17-10 win over Kansas City when he was hit by Chiefs safety Bernard Pollard.

Three days later, he visited his teammates at Gillette Stadium.

After the win over the Jets, Cassel, who made his first start since his senior year in high school, said he had talked a lot with Brady who had started 128 consecutive games.

"We had many different conversations on many different aspects of the game," Cassel said. "His big advice was to go out there, manage the game, be smart with the football, and that we have enough good players on this team to win if I do that."

Unlike Brady, Cassel stuck almost exclusively to short, safe passes and finished 16-for-23 for 165 yards with no touchdown or interceptions against the Jets.

He could get some more help from the two-time Super Bowl MVP as he prepares for his second start Sunday at home against Miami (0-2).

"We don't have a specific schedule on it or anything like that. Right now, the priority for Tom is to rehab and do everything he can to get back to 100 percent, and that's a long process," Belichick said. "Tom's always been great about helping other players and being part of the team, or being part of whatever we're doing.

"I'm sure that Tom will continue to be involved like he always has. To what degree, what the time frame is and the structure of it and all that, that's not in place and it will change during the course of the year, too."

Cassel and the rest of the Patriots already are familiar with their next opponent. In preparing for their most recent game, they watched film of the Jets' season-opening win over the Dolphins.

"Seeing them play against the Jets last week gave us a little bit of a head start on them," Belichick said. "We are so familiar with the Jets that it's a good comparison to see how they match up against a team that we just played."


Copyright 2008 by The Associated Press

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