Ahead of their clash with the Los Angeles Rams on Monday Night Football, Tampa Bay Buccaneers quarterback Tom Brady sat down with former New England Patriots teammate and now NFL Network football analyst Willie McGinest to discuss various issues. Brady and McGinest played together with the Patriots for six seasons before the latter was released and later signed with the Cleveland Browns. Brady and McGinest developed a close friendship which they have kept until now.

Brady speaks about career

McGinest opened the interview with the question about on Brady’s reflection about entering his 21st season in the NFL, after being drafted 199th overall in the 2000 NFL Draft.

“Everything’s just kind of been a progression. I think when I was in high school, I was like you know I want to play college football,” said Brady, as transcribed by the author from the video posted on NFL.com and on YouTube. Brady said after a few years in college, he dreamt of playing in the NFL and become a starting quarterback. “When I reflect back and think how it’s all played out, I’m just grateful to everybody who has supported me. I’m just a very, very blessed guy,” he said.

On Bruce Arians and Belichick

During the interview, McGinest asked how different is Buccaneers head coach Bruce Arians with Patriots head coach Bill Belichick. Brady said working with Arians has been really great for him in a different way, saying his new head coach is tough on him when things aren’t the way they need to be.

In their 38-3 loss to New Orleans, Arians publicly criticized Brady for his three interceptions, but the head coach drew flak from analysts for his failure to adjust to the Saints’ game plan. Brady admitted that his game is not perfect and he needs to be coached so that his mistakes can be called out.

“When you hear it from your coach, it does motivate you,” Brady said.

Brady discusses Bucs’ talent

While he’s surrounded with enormous talent like Pro Bowl receivers Mike Evans, Chris Godwin and Antonio Brown, Brady said it’s not safe to assume that they will win all their games. “I think that’s kind of the easy way out to be honest just because you think ‘oh we’re talented, we’ve all had production, let’s just roll our helmets our there and were going to win’.

I think that’s actually not the case,” Brady said.

Brady discusses Brown, Gronk

During the interview, Brady is happy to have tight end Rob Gronkowski back on the field, calling him the “beast” and his abilities have been “unmatched.” Brady also talked about Brown, who was recently signed by the Buccaneers before his eight-game suspension ended. The veteran quarterback said he watched Brown play for a long time and thought he was a spectacular player. “I think anytime you meet different people in your life and you think you can be a mentor in someway, that’s something I’ve always enjoyed as a quarterback,” Brady stressed. Brady said he’s lucky to have McGinest, Tedy Bruschi and Drew Bledsoe to guide him in his early years with the Patriots.

Hopkins gives Brady a gift

After declaring Brady as he winner of his contest he had on Twitter following his game-winning Hail Mary grab against the Buffalo Bills, Arizona Cardinals wide receiver DeAndre Hopkins sent the veteran quarterback a signed jersey as promised. Brady posted a photo of Hopkins’ jersey and pledged to give the wide receiver something in return.

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