PITTSFORD --- Veterans Kyle Williams and Eric Wood, two of the Buffalo Bills' captains, were both asked about Tom Brady's four-game suspension being upheld Wednesday at the players' move-in at training camp.
Williams, a union rep for the team, said players would defend Brady. And Wood, who has filled in as a rep before, added that it was "refreshing" to see a full suspension stick after an appeal.
Any suspension could have major ramifications in the AFC East.
“Obviously if you look at it from the league side, it would be hard for them to turn back on a ruling that they made with a special investigative crew to come in and make that decision," Williams said. "So I think them upholding it is not that all surprising, based on the fact that those are people that they hired. I would be hard to go back on it. As a PA, we have to protect the rights of all of our players. And with him, he declares his innocence. I think we’re going to let the process play out but we’re going to try to defend him the best way that we can from our end of it which is obviously totally opposed to what the NFL’s position is.”
Buffalo is set to face New England in Week 2. A Brady-less game could go a long way.
Williams isn't looking too far ahead.
"We haven’t even practiced yet," he said. "So we’ve got a long way to go for getting better ourselves before we even play a preseason game. And we’ve got a game before we even play them. So to worry about ‘will he be there, will he not be there,’ is a long way off. And if we’re concerned about that now, our head’s in the wrong place.”
Meanwhile, Wood liked the fact that the league stuck with a full suspension considering so many end up getting reduced.
And this one happened to be a four-time Super Bowl champion, the face of the NFL to many.
"I felt that the consistency shown is refreshing," Wood said. "Sometimes, it feels like they suspend a guy and then they always end up taking it away, taking half of it back or whatever. The consistency’s nice. I just don’t know enough about the whole situation to be able to determine what I think the punishment should’ve been. But I did appreciate the consistency. And I’m sure there will be a lot more going on from here.
“The competitor in you says ‘give me your best shot, we’ll give you our best shot.’ I know Coach Ryan said the same thing.”