The New England Patriots went into spin overdrive after their superstar quarterback, Tom Brady, urged fans to "start drinking early" before the team's home opener.
“Yeah, start drinking early. It’s a 4:15 game," Brady said when asked if he had any advoce for fans. "They have a lot of time to get lubed up, come out here and cheer for the home team.”
Brady, the husband of supermodel Gisele Bundchen and owner of three Super Bowl rings, was grinning as he made the comment, which also sparked laughter from reporters. But the league is sensitive to the issue of pregame alcohol abuse, and the team soon issued a "clarification."
Brady merely “wants everyone to drink a lot of water, stay hydrated," team spokesman Stacey James said. "Drink responsibly.”
The Patriots are coming off an opening win over the division rival Miami Dolphins, in a game that saw Brady throw for a career-high 517 yards and four touchdowns. They take on the San Diego Chargers at Foxboro in Sunday's marquee matchup.