New England Patriots quarterback Tom Brady took ownership of his role in his team’s AFC Championship loss to the Broncos on Sunday, despite saying facing the Denver defense was “an uphill battle all day,” according to ESPN.
“When you play quarterback, you’re going to take hits. You have to stand in there and make throws,” Brady said. “There are no excuses for me for not getting the job done.”
Brady was hit 23 times with four sacks and two interceptions in his 310-yard effort. Last year’s Super Bowl champions lost to the Broncos, 20–18, failing to advance to Super Bowl 50.
“Our guys fought hard,” Brady said. “I’m proud of all the guys for what they tried to accomplish. We just came up one play short to a very good football team.”
Brady hit tight end Rob Gronkowski with a four-yard touchdown pass to shave the Broncos’ lead to two points with 12 seconds left in the game. New England’s ensuing two-point conversion attempt failed, surrendering the victory to Denver.
“I wish the two-point play would have been different,” Brady said. “I’m sure everyone can look at different plays throughout the game when it's that close and say, ‘Man, I wish I would have made that play.’ But I’m proud of the way we fought, and we certainly fought until the end.”
The Broncos will face the Carolina Panthers in the Super Bowl on Feb. 7 at 6:30 p.m. ET.
- Erin Flynn