By RENE ESCOBAR
Thomas Edward Patrick Brady, the quarterback for the New England Patriots of the National Football League, is a name that forever will be associated with the phrase “greatest of all time” or the G.O.A.T.
Brady is a five-time champion, a three-time most valuable player award winner and a three-time member of the all pro-football team.
Brady is only second behind Peyton Manning (5) in MVP awards; he is fourth in career passing yards with 66,159; and fourth in career touchdown passes with 488.
At a glance, Brady was a failure. He was picked by the Patriots in the sixth round of the 2000 NFL draft at No. 199 out of the University of Michigan. He seemed to be destined to be a backup to all-pro QB Drew Bledsoe. That is, before Sep. 23, or Week 2, in the 2001 NFL season.
That was the day that the New England Patriots faced off against the New York Jets. During the game, Bledsoe blew his knee and gave rookie QB Brady his shot.
Brady’s first start came on Sept. 30, 2000, against legendary QB Manning. The Brady-led offense put up 44 points in a blowout win.
It was a cornerstone for what was to come. After the injury to Bledsoe, Brady started every game for the rest of the season. He led his team to a 11-3 record, throwing for 2,843 yards, 18 touchdowns and 12 interceptions.
In 2001, Brady not only led his team to Super Bowl as a backup, he won it against MVP Kurt Warner and “the greatest show on turf’s” St. Louis Rams. Brady was named Super Bowl MVP.
Brady was the orchestrator for a dynasty, winning three championships in four years. The season that cemented his legacy as the greatest of all time was in 2007. That was the year he led his team to a perfect regular season by going 16-0.
He also led his team to NFL records for most points scored by a team as well as most wins by a team. He also set QB records with the lowest touchdown-to-interception ratio and most touchdown passes with 50.
Although the perfect season was spoiled by the New York Giants in the Super Bowl, 2007 was a unheard-of achievement for Brady and the Pats.
Like many top athletes, though, Brady has faced adversity from the league government, his coaching staff and the competition. In 2013, the Patriots were accused of deflating footballs in the AFC Championship game. That led to Brady’s four-game suspension in the 2015 season.
Before that, during the historic 2007 year for Brady and the Patriots, the team was found to be videotaping the signal calls of the New York Jets.
Those, however, seem like mere bumps in the road on the way to almost perfection. After Super Bowl LII, Brady boasted a championship game record of 5-3. He has been to eight Super Bowls, while no other QB in NFL history has been to more than five.
Brady went from being a no-name QB from Michigan to the face of the NFL. His journey will be the greatest story ever told. His accomplishments will never be redone; his name will forever be associated with the greatest of all time.