New England Patriots quarterback Tom Brady made his weekly appearance on Dennis and Callahan this morning, and he served up some more praise to No. 1 wide receiver Danny Amendola. The 2013 season should be a big one for Amendola, who is getting a massive upgrade at the quarterback position by switching from Sam Bradford to Tom Brady. In the Patriots offense, I expect Amendola to average more yards per reception than he did with the St. Louis Rams, but I don’t expect to see the raw numbers that Wes Welker posted. I think Amendola will be targeted less than Welker does, and that’s because the Patriots are a lot deeper at wide receiver than they were last year.
Brady said, “He’s a very hard-working, hard-nosed football player. He wants to be out there every day — and how competitive he is. He wants to do the right thing and you can tell how much he loves the game and how much he wants to contribute and do it. This is our first opportunity to be able to do that, this weekend. He missed the last couple of preseason games, and I know he’s anxious to get out there and do it under live action. When we played against [the Rams], we game-planned for him. Our defense really speaks to the level of quality of receiver that he is.”
Danny Amendola is an incredibly tough and determined individual, and I haven’t read anything that would dispel either of those two descriptions of Amendola. He has terrific self-motivation, and it is a testament to his work ethic and determination that he and Tom Brady already share a terrific rapport. Both players were clicking in the preseason, and the Patriots have a lot of confidence in Amendola. There’s no reason not be confident in him, and he is poised for a big season. Health is a concern, but it is an overblown one. If you look at the injuries he has suffered in his career, they aren’t recurring and are mostly freak injuries like a broken collarbone.