Brady being Brady- simply the greatest
After 60 minutes of passing, pounding, and perseverance, Tom Brady looked emotionally and physically exhausted. Taking questions at his Super Bowl post game podium, Brady looked like he hadn’t slept in a week.
The 37 year old quarterback should be weary. He carried his entire team on his shoulders in what will be remembered as one of the best Super Bowl’s in history.
Brady said earlier in the week that nothing would be bigger for him than a win against the Seattle Seahawks in the NFL Championship game. With 70,ooo in attendance and a billion more watching around the world, Brady etched his name in the history books forever.
Patriots fans have seen this many times before. It’s called “Brady time.” Down by 3 with 6:52 left in the 4th quarter, Brady marshaled his teammates at his own 36 yard line. What followed was a methodical, gut checking carve-up of the vaunted Seattle defense in which Brady completed 8 of 8 passes, culminating with an end zone bullet to favorite target Julian Edelman with 2:06 to play. It proved to be the final dagger in the Seahawks’ hopes to repeat as champions.
Brady “did his job” with the precision, patience, confidence and leadership that would make his childhood idol proud. Growing up in San Mateo, California, Tom Brady dreamed of being as “cool as San Francisco Forty Niners quarterback Joe Montana.”
Brady was cooler than cool. He was ice.
After trailing by 10 points late in the third quarter, the Patriots now led 28-24 with just over 2 minutes left. Brady sat on the bench as Seahawks quarterback Russell Wilson once again drove his team downfield in the final minutes of a game. A circus catch by Jermain Kearse at the 1 yard line with only 1:14 left spelled almost certain doom for the Patriots. The Seahawks merely needed to hand the ball off to Marshawn Lynch and it was game over, as there would be no time for any further heroics by Brady and company. Instead, and inexplicably, Seahawks coach Pete Carroll called for a passing play.
Wilson’s pass went directly into the hands of the route jumping Patriots defender Malcolm Butler, and the rest is history.
So much for all the pre-game discussion about the Patriot’s running game being key. So much for Kurt Warner’s pre-game key that Seattle had the advantage at quarterback. This game was all about Brady’s arm, his toughness, and his ability to remain cool, calm and collected.
“We made the plays when we needed to,” Brady understated after the game.
Brady now takes his place with Montana and Steeler’s great Terry Bradshaw with four Super Bowl wins. He also holds the record with 13 career Super Bowl touchdown passes. And beyond that, Brady – being Brady – led his team to the largest 4th quarter comeback in Super Bowl history.
One of his newest teammates summed it up perfectly.
“It’s just another one under his belt,” said Patriots cornerback Darelle Revis. “He is going to go down as the greatest quarterback to ever play this game. He is clutch. He is Michael Jordan. He is Tom Brady. You put him in that category of Magic Johnson, all of them, man. Go down the list. He is one of the greatest to ever do it.”
I remember trying to find a much younger Tom Brady in the Patriots locker room when it was announced he would be starting for the injured Drew Bledsoe back in 2001. Brady was just a kid back then, and believe it or not, a nobody. But New Englanders are still thanking their lucky stars, 14 years later, that Bill Belichick saw something special in the 6th round draft pick out of University of Michigan.
Brady says he wants to play into his 40’s. As he put it, “I’ll quit when I suck.”
Hard to believe today that will happen any time soon.