The Washington Post

NFL Playoffs: Broncos vs. Patriots; Tim Tebow vs. Tom Brady

View Photo Gallery: Tom Brady practiced with an intensity that surprised Chad Ochocinco. Backup Brian Hoyer (right) was more amused than frightened, though, this week. (Steven Senne | Associated Press)

Tom Brady admits that the losses eat him up. He talks about how he’s still bothered by the loss to the Jets in the playoffs last year. And no doubt he’s doubly aware of the fact that he and the Patriots have lost playoff games at home the last two years and have lost three playoff games in a row overall, starting with Super Bowl XLII.

Imagine what another one would do to him. He’s 34 and knows there are only so many more chances he’ll have to win his fourth Super Bowl. While the sports universe was consumed with every waking thought of Denver Broncos quarterback Tim Tebow, Brady went about his business. With an intensity that surprised wide receiver Chad Ochocinco, a newcomer to the Patriots’ team this year.

“I was like, ‘Is Tom okay?’ You know, he’s intense, but this was like a whole new thing, man,” Ochocinco said (via Yahoo’s Jason Cole) of the Tim vs. Tom rematch, this time in primetime. “They were like, ‘It’s that time of the year, you just have to understand.’ ”

Brady’s intensity made a rare and profane appearance on the sideline in a game against the Washington Redskins, when he lashed out at offensive coordinator Bill O’Brien. “That was nothing. That stuff happens every day. Every . . . single . . . day,” Ochocinco said. “That’s what it’s like around here. Everybody is pushing for perfection and they’re pushing hard. I’ve never seen anything like it in my whole career.

“You understand why this team is where it is. . . .  Tom is on you about the littlest things, that you were a step off where you should be or the angle is wrong or whatever it is. Really, he has me walking on eggshells and I haven’t done that since I was a rookie.”

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After spending most of her career in traditional print sports journalism, Cindy began blogging and tweeting, first as NFL/Redskins editor, and, since August 2010, at The Early Lead. She also is the social media editor for Sports.


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