FOXBORO - The coach was brutally honest.
Rex Ryan laid the numbers, as mediocre as they are, right on the table for his defense to feast.
"Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, whenever. Rex read the stats for Tom Brady's last four playoff games," said linebacker Bart Scott, after he and the Jets stunned the Patriots, 28-21 in the AFC Divisional playoffs here yesterday. "If somebody read those to you, you wouldn't be afraid either. A 66 percent quarterback rating over the last four playoff games. Would you be afraid of that?"
Seriously, this morning, much of New England should be. Maybe those 36 TDs with only four picks this year were a mirage, a fluke, some kind of statistical anomaly.
Think about it. Since his near-perfect undressing of the Jacksonville Jaguars in the 2007 season's playoff opener, Brady has shriveled up into a shell of his former self.
Remember, this is the same guy who most sane people had placed in the same breath as Joe Montana after nine straight playoff wins, three Super Bowls, to open his career.
Since then, he is 5-5, currently riding a three-game playoff losing streak. Two of those were here, the third was on neutral turf in Super Bowl XLII - and in all three the Pats were more than a touchdown favorite.
Yesterday, Brady played like Matt Cassel in his playoff debut. He danced and tiptoed in the pocket, seeking out answers downfield with little or no success.
"He just couldn't get a beat on us," said New York defensive end Shaun Ellis. "It was one of those things where he was expecting one thing and we showed him another."
Brady finished the effort at 29 of 45 for 299 yards, a pair of TDs and an interception, with a QB rating of 89.0
On paper, that might be acceptable, but most of his work was fourth-quarter window dressing against the Jets' prevent coverage.
Brady's QB ratings after each of the first three quarters were: 53.2, 50.9 and 83.7.
"I think you've got to move on," said Brady. "You've got to learn from your mistakes and hopefully move forward with even more determination than before."
Those words might not have rung so hollow a year ago after Baltimore walked in here to Gillette Stadium and obliterated the Patriots in the playoff opener.
Brady was only 15 months over a totally reconstructed knee. The Pats weren't the offensive juggernaut, ripping off 30-plus point games like this year or 2007 for that matter.
What did Brady learn?
When the lights flashed on here yesterday, it was not Mark Sanchez succumbing to the pressure.
It was the guy with all the hardware. Maybe the spotlight flashing off all those rings has blinded Brady at the wrong time. But the trend is disturbing.
Brady's pick, a flop of a screen attempt to BenJarvus Green-Ellis in the red zone on New England's opening drive, was something you'd expect out of a Chad Henne or a Matt Hasselbeck, but not the most dangerous player in the game.
"Not probably the safest play in the playbook," he said. "That's not really the way you draw it up."
Look, Tom Brady remains the greatest performer New England football has ever seen. He might be the best athlete ever to compete in this four-sport town.
But come this morning, his sudden penchant to become discombobulated in the NFL playoffs should strike fear in the hearts of every proud Bruschi-jersey wearing fan.
As Rex Ryan pointed out and his Jets drove home here yesterday, the truth really, really hurts.
BRADY'S POSTSEASON SLIDE
After sprinting to 10 straight playoff wins to begin his career, Tom Brady has now gone 4-5 in his last nine.
More importantly, his postseason numbers have gone from Hall of Fame to journey in the last five.
Take a look at Brady's numbers:
Sample W-L CompAttPct.Yards TDsINT Yds/att QB Rating
First 15 starts13-2321514 62.4%3,4792396.872.7
Last 4 starts1-3103168 61.3%928775.5 90.0