Much has been made about New England Patriots quarterback Tom Brady's absence from this week's voluntary offseason workouts. It's been written about endlessly and has been fodder for Boston sports talk radio.
One person who isn't interested in talking about Brady is Patriots coach Bill Belichick.
Asked Tuesday about Brady missing this week's organized team activities (OTAs), Belichick said, "Yeah, I'm not going to talk about the people that aren't here. Guys that are here are improving, they're working hard and those are the guys we're going to focus on."
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Asked a follow up about whether it's challenging to run workouts without Brady, Belichick again ducked the question, while possibly sending a veiled message to his quarterback.
"All the guys that are here, not everybody's working, but all the guys that are out here working are improving, and it's a great opportunity for them and for our team to come together. That's what's happening."
Belichick was then asked about tight end Rob Gronkowski, who has also yet to show up for the voluntary workouts.
"I'm focused on the guys that are here, and those are the guys that we're working with. Those are the guys I'm concentrating on," he said.
Belichick did take a few minutes to praise some of the younger players who have stepped up and taken on more of a leadership role this year. And he said it's been good to see players who missed time due to injury last year like Julian Edelman and Dont'a Hightower back in action.
"It's a new team, new year," he said. "Just take it one step at a time and keep moving on. We've got a long way to go.
"Each day is an opportunity for us, and we try to make the most out of every opportunity."