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Mike Shalin's Working Press: Brady understands concussion risks

September 14. 2017 10:36PM
New England Patriots quarterback Tom Brady talks on the sideline during the second quarter of a preseason game against the New York Giants at Gillette Stadium last month. (Stew Milne-USA TODAY Sports)

It shouldn't really come as much of a shock, but Tom Brady really doesn’t seem to be worried about the head injuries becoming so common for current and past NFL players.

TB12 will appear on "CBS Sunday Morning," talking about the topic, which came to the forefront recently when Brady’s wife, Gisele Bundchen, said her husband has suffered unreported head injuries and that she is worried about his long-term future.

Like most football players, Brady, who says he wants to play until he’s 45, doesn’t sound too concerned. He’s a football player, one of the best ever, and he’s driven by the competition.

“I’m not oblivious to them,” Brady tells CBS. “I mean, I understand the risks that, you know, come with, the physical nature of our game.”

Danny Amendola is the latest Patriot dealing with a concussion. He wasn’t at practice again Thursday and figures to miss Sunday’s game at New Orleans. With all the studies of players’ brains being done and all the findings of CTE and other problems, there sees to be a clear and present danger playing this game.

“I don’t know what the future is going to look like, you know, and I’m not going to pretend to predict it,” Brady says. “And I’m going to do everything I can to take care of my body in advance of the, you know, of the hits that I’m going to take on Sunday.”

Next man up

Don’t expect Bill Belichick to whine about the injuries that have hit is team. Not his style.

“There’s some element of that every week in the National Football League,” he said Tuesday. “Every team is dealing with something and some circumstances and some unique situations about the game. We have ours and everybody else has theirs. I’ve seen weeks a lot worse than this one, to be honest with you. We’ll work our way through it and we’ll be ready to go on Sunday.”

Hardly a surprise, but the Packers replaced the Patriots atop theScore’s power rankings for Week 2.

Austin Carr, who had a strong camp with the Pats but was released and picked up by New Orleans, was inactive for Monday night’s loss to the Vikings and there was no indication he will get a chance to stick it to the Patriots this week.

The Yankees will honor the 10th anniversary of the football Giants’ 2007 Super Bowl win (who’d they beat anyway?) before Saturday’s game. Over 40 players from that team will be on the field with the trophy and four players – captains Antonio Pierce, David Tyree (remember him?), Shaun O’Hara and Jeff Feagles will throw out first pitches before the game with the Orioles.

Where’s Hanley?

Hey, didn’t you used to be Hanley Ramirez?

The .291 lifetime hitter was down to .238 and on the bench again Thursday as the Red Sox finished their series with the Oakland A’s. Manager John Farrell said “the shoulders have flared up again” on Ramirez.

In nine games this month, he is 6-for-40 (.150) with a 1.71 on-base percentage, with a double, a homer and four RBIs. He has just a .743 OPS for the year and is hitting .192 with runners in scoring position, .143 with two out and RISP.

The put him and his $22 million salary on the bench Thursday, where he might have been sitting next to David Price, the club’s new $31 million reliever. If you missed it, Price will be a reliever the rest of the year. Remember, his two postseason wins both came in relief.

Tip of the cap to Drew Pomeranz, now 16-5 and 10-1 since June 16.

The Dodgers’ win Wednesday night allowed them to join the Red Sox as the only team in the majors with winnings records overall, at home, on the road, against every division and in interleague.


The Indians, as you probably know, came into Thursday night’s game in Kansas City with 21 straight wins. Some notes on the streak?

— Cleveland trailed for only four of 189 innings in the 21 games.

— Only three of the 21 were one-run games.

— The Indians have outscored the opposition 139-35 in the 21 games.

— Their starters had 19 of the 21 wins, posting a 1.70 ERA.

— The Indians hit more homers (40) than runs allowed by the staff.

— They are playing with Andrew Miller and Michael Brantley on the disabled list and just lost rookie center fielder Bradley Zimmer for the season.

“Who would’ve ever thought that we’d be in this situation?” Jay Bruce said after his three-run homer (his 34th of the season) keyed win No. 21. “I can’t even imagine.”

There’s another thing you have to know about the Indians, who haven’t won a World Series since 1948. In 1954, they went 111-43 and were then swept by the New York Giants in the World Series. That marked the second time they were swept in four games; they were outscored 22-5 in a four-gamer against the White Sox in July. This year’s team also has one four-game losing streak.

By the way, the 21 wins is one more than the Cleveland Browns have won the last five years (and one game this season) combined.

Good signing

Not having David Pastrnak signed as camp started wouldn’t have been good for any of the parties involved, which made the Bruins’ signing the winger to a six-year/$40million contract a good thing.

Let’s face it, while Pastrnak has his shortcomings, he can score goals and this team doesn’t have a lot of players who can score goals. Getting this headache out of the way has to be a good thing — for both sides. The contract should turn out to be a bargain.

Drop the puck. Let’s go!

Mike Shalin covers Boston pro sports for the New Hampshire Union Leader and Sunday News. His email address is

Patriots/NFL Red Sox/MLB Celtics/NBA Bruins/NHL Sports columns