The New England Patriots are a relentless Super Bowl-winning machine, so dominant and so cold and so merciless that everyone else in the league jumps on any hint of internal discord. And now, they’ve got it: head coach Bill Belichick has cut the privileges Tom Brady’s personal trainer, Alex Guerrero.
Until recently, Guerrero flew on the team’s charter and could walk the sideline of both home and away games. A business partner of Brady, Guerrero has an office near the Patriots locker room and has treated several players other than Brady.
But now, Belichick has blocked Guerrero from the plane and the sideline, and no players other than Brady may go to Guerrero for treatment at Gillette Stadium. The Patriots’ medical staff has had concerns about Guerrero’s role and training for several years, and lodged complaints with the organization in 2015.
Brady dodged the topic in his weekly interview segment on WEEI. “I don’t have any comment on that other than to say Alex, it’s been well-documented, has been a huge part of what I do and I’m so fortunate to have him not only as a friend, but with everything that we’ve been able to do together,” Brady said.
The Boston Globe broke down the extensive relationship between Brady and Guerrero, which began after Brady’s knee injury in 2008 and has grown to include Brady’s entire TB12 lifestyle and health brand. However, Guerrero’s endeavors have drawn the attention of government regulators; the Federal Trade Commission blocked him from claiming that a drink called Neurosafe “protects your brain from the consequences of sports-related traumatic brain injury,” while the state of Massachusetts looked into, and ultimately cleared him of, allegations that he was practicing physical therapy without a license.
Patriots owner Robert Kraft has said that having Guerrero as well as another medical staff under the same roof “doesn’t come without its challenges … But we have a coach that’s accepting, and we have a leader of the franchise who’s driving it.”
Belichick loathes distraction, and for most of the last decade and a half, Brady has been on the inside of Belichick’s charmed circle. It’ll be interesting to see how Brady handles being on the outside.
Jay Busbee is a writer for Yahoo Sports and the author of EARNHARDT NATION, on sale now at Amazon or wherever books are sold. Contact him at email@example.com or find him on Twitter or on Facebook.
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