Greatness or Grift

Tom Brady is known for his talent in football
Tom Brady is known for his talent in football
Courtesy of Google Images

Tom Brady, Quarterback of the New England Patriots, is widely regarded as one of the best players in the history of the National Football League (NFL). He has been the face of the league for over a decade, and at 39 years old, he is reaching that time in a quarterback’s career when one’s body says it’s time to hang up the  cleats. Brady is highly regarded in New England for obvious reasons, yet across the country, many question his  morality due to his arrogance and involvement in a few scandals. Even if you are not an avid football fan, you probably have at least heard the name Brady. His jersey is one of the most sold on the NFL website, and he was all over the news in 2015 and 2016 for one of the most odd scandals in NFL history, “Deflategate.” Brady was accused of deflating footballs to his benefit in the game. This is against strict NFL policy, which mandates that footballs have to be inflated to a certain level. He was to be suspended for the first four games of the upcoming regular season; he appealed this, and took it to federal court, but lost, and his suspension was upheld.

A cloud hovered over the future hall-of-famer’s career; no matter how great he was on the field, people were likely never to forget his involvement in “Deflategate.” Critics were saying at 39, Brady was done, and that his team would never be able to make the playoffs without him playing the first four games. The Patriots’ dominance over the NFL for the past 15 seasons seemed to be over.

What do you really know about Tom Brady? His journey to greatness is what makes him great. When he arrived to play football at the University of Michigan, he was seventh on the Quarterback depth chart. Seventh. He eventually became the starter in his junior and senior seasons. He was not highly regarded by NFL scouts and was drafted in the sixth (of seven) round of the NFL draft by New England. Again, once he arrived at the Patriots facilities, he was low on the depth chart, sitting at fourth. In his second season, the starting quarterback for New England went down with an injury and Brady stepped in, and the rest is history. He won a Super Bowl in his first full year as a starter, and has acquired another three Super Bowl victories since then. One might think, “well he must have had an abundance of talent around him in order to be so successful.” False. Tom Brady has never played with a Hall of Fame wide receiver, nor a “Hall of Famer” anywhere on his offense. The one other Hall of Fame player who was ever on Brady’s team was a defensive player, Junior Seau. Brady won all by himself, solidifying himself as one of the all time greats.

Personally, I think Brady is cocky and full of himself, but I also understand that one has to have some arrogance to play a professional sport and be good at it. I think he complains to the referees too much, and pouts when he loses. I do not like Brady, but I respect him as a football player. Brady was undoubtedly guilty in “Deflategate”. I hate cheaters, as does most of the American public. Brady and the Patriots were also involved in a scandal in 2007 where they allegedly video taped the opposing teams’ defensive signals. To make it worse, the Patriots had an undefeated regular season and went to the Super Bowl in that 2007 season.

Fast forward to January 22, 2017: Brady walks off the field in Foxborough, Massachusetts, with his seventh AFC Championship; The NFL is separated into two conferences, the AFC and the NFC. The champions of each respective conference play each other in the Super Bowl. Despite all the talk, and his four game suspension, Tom Brady took his team to the Super Bowl. He left that game with a little grin on his face saying, “I told you so.”

This year’s Super Bowl is upon us, and there is a distinct possibility that the most hated quarterback in the NFL this year and his team will lift the Lombardi Trophy, after receiving it from the hands of the NFL commissioner who took Brady to court just 10 months ago.

We will have to see who wins the 2017 Super Bowl, and even how much longer Tom Brady will continue to play football. Who knows, New England could even get caught cheating again. People will inevitably continue to hate Brady and his personality until the end of time, but the only thing we will ever know for sure about Tom Brady is that he is the best there ever was at winning football games. He will be remembered as the best. The guy is a winner.

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