By Matt Dolloff, CBS Boston
BOSTON (CBS) -- It's only Tuesday but the AFC Championship between the Patriots and Broncos already has its first bulletin board material. First the Broncos' Brandon Marshall said Gronk is hard to cover because he pushes off, now defensive end Antonio Smith is taking shots at Tom Brady.
A reporter for the Colorado Springs Gazette asked Smith if Brady is a crybaby when it comes to his propensity to call for flags whenever he gets hit. Never mind that just about every quarterback in the league does that, but apparently Smith thinks it's that much worse with TB12.
"That would be an accurate statement," Smith said on whether Brady is a 'crybaby.' I've never seen any quarterback look to the referee right after he gets sacked more than Brady ... Every time he gets sacked he looks at the ref like, 'You see him sack me? Was that supposed to happen? He did it a little hard. Please throw a 15-yard penalty on him. Get him fined.'"
Smith did, however, acknowledged that hits and sacks do not shake Brady's confidence or make him "cry" more. He gets back up and keeps coming at you, as the Seahawks' Michael Bennett pointed out. So in the insult department, this is like a 6 out of 10 at best.
"He's not going to rattle just because you hit him hard. I've tried over the years," he said. "That's what D-linemen think: 'The harder you hit the quarterback, the better it will make it on the secondary.' With Brady, he's a great competitor. You know it's coming. He's going to cry about getting hit, but he's going to take the hit and keep going."
Nice back-handed compliment from Smith there. But, ultimately, Smith managed to play both sides; he called Brady a crybaby, but gave him credit where it's due. This is just masterful trash-talk if you ask me. A+ work.
Expect this video to stream 24/7 in the Patriots locker room.
Matt Dolloff is a writer for CBSBostonSports.com. His opinions do not necessarily reflect that of CBS or 98.5 The Sports Hub. Follow him on Twitter @mattdolloff and email him at email@example.com.
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