Reimer: Tom Brady ending interviews over Alex Guerrero only opens up his guru to more scrutiny

Alex Reimer
August 27, 2018 - 11:51 am

Tom Brady apparently doesn’t want to answer any more questions about Alex Guerrero’s role with the Patriots. His refusal to engage has done more to perpetuate the story than any standard response he could provide. 

Kirk Minihane asked Brady Monday about Guerrero’s presence on the Patriots’ team plane prior to their third preseason game against the Panthers, and whether the embattled trainer was on the team’s sideline for the contest. Last year, Bill Belichick reportedly banished Guerrero from both places.

“Yeah, he was with me this last week, so it was; yeah,” Brady said in response to Minihane’s first inquiry.

Minihane followed up twice, and Brady declined comment each time. Then, when Minihane was seemingly ready to change the subject, Brady circled back to Guerrero. That led to the third question on the topic, which ended the interview. The transcript is below: 

Minihane: What changed with him not being on the team plane last year and this year? Was that just communication back and forth? Was that understanding of other things? What led to that being able to happen this year?

Brady: You know, I don't want to; I'm not getting into all that.

Minihane: OK, when I ran into him at the Super Bowl last year in Minneapolis, I remember talking about it at the time. When I talked to him there, he had said, in his opinion, all this stuff had been overblown, that he and Belichick had a pretty good relationship, even then. Would you say that was true?

Brady: I said I don't want to get into it.

Minihane: OK, go ahead, Evan (Drellich).

Brady: Yeah. Everyone knows, it's well documented the work he and I do together.

Minihane: No, I understand that. I'm just trying to figure out because I saw the reports this weekend that he was traveling with the team. Was he on the sideline Friday?

Brady: Yeah, all right guys, have a great day. I'll talk to you later.

In late July, Brady abruptly ended a post-practice scrum when Globe reporter Ben Volin asked about people connecting Julian Edelman’s positive PED test to his work with Guerrero. “I have no comment. That’s just ridiculous. I’m out,” Brady responded.

There are ways for Brady to shut down questions about Guerrero without turning the exchanges into national incidents. With Volin, he could have offered no comment, and referred to the statement Guerrero released when Edelman’s suspension was first announced. On “Kirk & Callahan,” Brady managed to change the subject with two terse responses. It would have been a footnote without the hang-up. 

Brady appears to want to prove a point here. For the last 18 years, he's watched Belichick shut down questions about contentious topics. Perhaps he's now trying to do the same with Guerrero. But Belichick doesn’t end interviews when he disapproves of the inquiries. Instead, he sits there in stone cold silence, waiting for the subject to change. 

That was Brady’s original tact with Minihane. But he decided to add an exclamation point. As a result, this is now a major story, and almost every article written about the spat mentions Guerrero’s shady background –– including the two Federal Trade Commission investigations. 

Brady seemingly wants it both ways with Guerrero. He's happy to prominently feature Guerrero in his “Tom vs. Time” series and dedicate an entire book to Guerrero’s training methods, but not address the negatives. While that’s his prerogative, it doesn’t shield Guerrero from scrutiny. The apparent animosity between Brady and Belichick has been the biggest story in Boston sports for nearly one year, and Guerrero reportedly is at the center of it. In 2017, Belichick curtailed Guerrero’s access. Now it seems like Guerrero has regained some privileges. It’s fair to bring up the topic, despite what ex-jocks like Rob Ninkovich and Matt Chatham may think. 

It’s obvious Brady is perturbed about the fixation on Guerrero's status with the Patriots. He could've quelled this most recent story with a simple "no comment." But he hung up on the phone. 

Once again, Alex Guerrero is the No. 1 topic in sports today. This time, that’s on Brady.