FOXBOROUGH — Nobody’s ever going to complain about getting a week off from work. And that includes Tom Brady, who won’t be playing this weekend but still has a pretty busy docket.
The Patriots quarterback will be hanging out with his extended family rather than his football family as the team enters its bye week on the heels of a 51-17 blowout of the Jaguars — a game in which Brady threw a pair of touchdown passes, giving him 401 for his career.
“My sister is getting married,’’ Brady said Monday on his weekly appearance on WEEI. “So I get to spend it with my family, which will be great, and I’m really happy for her. It’s probably the best bye week I’ve ever had.’’
The week off is definitely coming at the right time for Brady’s sister, but with the way the Patriots are rolling right now — 3-0 start; franchise-record 119 points plus an NFL-record 88 first downs through three games; and back-to-back 40-plus-point games — it may not be coming at an ideal time for the bride’s brother.
Brady acknowledged as much, saying in a perfect scenario the best time for a week off is “probably right in the middle [of the season]. Week 4, it is what it is. We’ll deal with it. We’re kind of getting into the swing of things, but it’s just the way it is.’’
Julian Edelman, who also is enjoying a phenomenal start to the season, averaging 10 catches per game, had similar sentiments about the timing.
“Of course you would like to have the bye week a little later, but you’ve got to deal with the situation,’’ Edelman told WEEI, while revealing that he’ll be at homecoming at Kent State during his weekend off. “Other teams have to deal with the same thing every once in a while. In other years, we’ve had it in a relatively good area.’’
Offensive coordinator Josh McDaniels doesn’t concern himself about when the bye week lands, especially considering teams have no control over scheduling. He just welcomes it as it comes.
“I don’t think any bye week is a bad thing for these guys,’’ said McDaniels. “They work their bodies hard. They do a lot to get their bodies prepared each week, so whenever they get a bye is good.
“We try to do a good job of mixing, taking advantage of the time, along with addressing things we need to get better at.’’
There are some players who couldn’t care less when the week off comes; they just roll with it.
“You can always take a positive out of the bye week,’’ said Rob Gronkowski, who will be taking more of a working vacation. “Work hard, get your body right, get your strength back in the weight room, and just stay conditioned. Just rest, let your muscles chill, and do what you’ve got to do to be ready for the next game.’’
Getting ready for the next game is definitely what’s on the coaching staff’s agenda, so in that sense it’s not a big departure from the norm, other than maybe the chance to take a deep breath.
“I don’t think I’ve ever been on a team where anybody was unhappy to have a bye week, whenever it comes,’’ said Bill Belichick, who has led the Patriots to an 11-4 mark in games after the bye week.
“So, you take advantage of the chance to rest, get caught up, take some time analyzing what you need to work on, and have a good plan to do things that can help your team improve during this time and when the team returns to really start in on our preparations for Dallas.’’
Belichick, whose team had its turnaround moment in Week 4 last season — a blowout loss in Kansas City on “Monday Night Football’’ — said the down week is beneficial not only from a physical standpoint, it can also give the players and staff a chance to escape from the mental grind, too.
“These guys have been going really hard since the end of July,’’ he said. “Even though we’ve had a couple of days here and there, training camp rolled right into the opening game of the year, which came on Thursday, so there was a lot of urgency just coming out of preseason and into the start of the season without really any cushion.
“Then we had an extra couple of days there for Buffalo, but Buffalo is always tough, so there was a lot of catching up to do that week. And then we rolled right into Jacksonville, so these guys really haven’t had much of a cushion from the end of July.
“So, this is an opportunity for some of these guys and really all of them, players and the coaches too, after seven games and nine-plus weeks of training camp and football, to catch our breath for a short time and we’ve got a long stretch ahead of us.’’
Jim McBride can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.