Antonio Cromartie knew the questions were coming, the ones inquriring about his feelings for the guy who'll be whipping passes around Gillette Stadium on Sunday afternoon.
No, not Mark Sanchez.
The Jets cornerback made those well-publicized comments about Tom Brady before the Jets took on the Patriots in the AFC Divisionals in January, calling him an expletive and saying - - - - him. So he was aware he was going to be peppered with questions about that with the Jets set to meet their rivals at 4:15 p.m. Sunday.
Still, he said it wasn't something that bothered him.
"Honestly, I really don’t care," Cromartie said. "I mean, it’s part of it. What I said last year is what I said. It’s not going to change. The biggest thing for us as a team and as a whole is to make sure we go up there with the right mindset and that’s to come out with a win."
During his press conference in New England today, Brady was asked, as one might imagine, about his thoughts on Cromartie's comments from January. He didn't bite and actually offered up a big smile as he ended his presser early, walking off the podium after he was asked a third time about Cromartie's words.
"I really don't care what he says," Brady said. "Thanks, guys."
Asked later on a conference call with the New York media if he wanted to respond, Brady said: "No, I don't."
Cromartie said he enjoys playing the Patriots and being a part of a big rivalry, adding: "Hopefully, the words I said last year will make it even bigger."
These probably won't help either. When someone asked what's the plan for the Jets defensively, he replied: "To beat the hell out of their receivers. That’s our gameplan on the outside, is to try to mess up their timing routes as much as we can."
"What about feeling being booed that day at Gillette Stadium?
"I hope I’m booed again, honestly," he said with a laugh. "I hope I get booed again. I really don’t care. They are not my fans. My fans are here in New York."
Since Cromartie refused to repeat his foul-mouthed comments again, there was a thought among some that he's backing down off his harsh words. Cromartie wasn't buying that.
"I’m not going to change how I feel about Tom Brady from what I said last year," he said. "Do I respect him? Yes. He is a guy that has three Super Bowl rings. But other than that, when we are really on the football field, I really don’t give a damn."