FOXBOROUGH, Mass. — Tom Brady walked in New York without the protective boot that he had worn on his right foot, increasing the likelihood that his injury was not serious.
The Web site, TMZ.com, posted a video Tuesday showing the Patriots star walking without the boot and without a noticeable limp through a group of photographers in New York and getting in a cab. The video, lasting 1 minute, 11 seconds, then briefly showed his girlfriend, Gisele Bundchen, leaving a residence.
Several Web sites had photos Monday — credited to infphoto.com — that showed Brady wearing a walking boot on his right foot. A video of Brady walking with a slight limp from an SUV to Bundchen’s home was also available on TMZ.com.
Later Monday, other pictures showed him wearing black shoes — and no boot — when he showed up at a New York hotspot.
Brady, this season’s NFL MVP, and the Patriots are headed to the Feb. 3 Super Bowl against the New York Giants.
Brady has a high ankle sprain that is “mild,” according to the Boston Herald. The Boston Globe characterized it as a “minor” high ankle sprain.
Patriots spokesman Stacey James said he had no information about the injury. Brady’s agent, Donald Yee, did not return telephone calls or an e-mail seeking comment. Coach Bill Belichick was not available for comment Tuesday. He was not asked about Brady’s physical condition during his news conference Monday.
Players were given three days off after the Patriots’ 21-12 win over the San Diego Chargers in the AFC championship game.
The chief of the foot and ankle division at Brigham and Women’s Hospital in Boston, Dr. Chris Chiodo, told The Associated Press in a telephone interview on Tuesday that Brady doesn’t appear to be seriously injured.
“I don’t think he’d be walking on it if” he had a displaced fracture, said Chiodo, who is not treating Brady. He said he has used a boot to treat several types of ailments, including a sprain, a strain, a bone bruise, tendinitis or overuse of the foot.
Brady did not appear to be limping during the AFC championship game before he was sacked by Igor Olshansky and Stephen Cooper with just over 8 minutes to go. He had thrown three interceptions before that. After the sack, he completed all four of his passes.
Brady has been extremely durable in his NFL career. He started his 126th consecutive game Sunday. In that game, the Chargers’ Philip Rivers took all his team’s snaps and threw for 211 yards despite arthroscopic surgery on his right knee six days earlier.
The Patriots’ backup quarterbacks are Matt Cassel and Matt Gutierrez. Cassel has thrown 39 passes in his three NFL seasons, all with New England. Gutierrez, a rookie, completed the only pass he threw this season.
During his weekly radio appearance on WEEI on Monday, Brady was asked if his leg was injured.
“Ah, you know, there’s always bumps and bruises. I’ll be ready for the Super Bowl,” he said before the photos and video emerged. “I’m not worried about that. I’m not missing this one. I’d have to be on a stretcher to miss this one. There will be treatment this week. In games like this, you get a little nicked up. It’s nothing serious.”
SUPER BOWL XLII
Giants vs. Patriots
6:30 p.m. Feb. 3
University of Phoenix Stadium in Glendale, Ariz.