NEW YORK (AFP) — Injured New England Patriots quarterback Tom Brady and his team went on the offensive Thursday, denying reports about the former Super Bowl Most Valuable Player and lingering infection after surgery.
An ESPN report said infection caused a major problem with Brady's surgically repaired left knee and the Patriots were unhappy he opted to have a Los Angeles doctor perform the operation rather than Boston physicians.
Should the tendon graft be damaged by an infection, Brady might need another operation and that would mean starting over with the lengthy process of rehabilitating the knee, which was injured in the team's season opener.
But hours after that report, the Patriots released a statement of their own, expressing total confidence in Brady and support for his decision.
"Today, ESPN cited an unnamed source who supposedly expressed the feelings of the Patriots organization. This unsubstantiated report does not represent the team's views whatsoever," a statement from the Patriots said.
"We have supported Tom Brady 100 percent from day one of this process and will continue to do so. That support includes all aspects of the process. Today, we reiterate our total support for Tom as he recovers from his injury."
Since it takes about a year to recover from the ligament surgery, any new operation could put Brady's 2009 National Football League season at risk.
But Brady posted a message on his website Thursday saying his follow-up operations cleaning out the wound were "pro-active".
"The infection is very treatable and, through a course of antibiotics, it will be knocked out of my system," Brady said.
Brady threw a one-season NFL record 50 touchdowns last season, when the Patriots went undefeated before losing to the New York Giants in the Super Bowl.
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