I have known nothing other than Tom Brady in the NFL. Growing up outside of Boston, I have been spoiled regarding my favorite teams’ success. Whether it be the Red Sox and their four titles, the Bruins in 2011 and their constant pursuits of the Stanley Cup since, or the Celtics from 2008 on there has always been one constant. As those teams had their ups and downs throughout the years, I could always count on the Patriots and Tom Brady to always be in contention to win a Super Bowl.
Tom Brady taught us something about his toughness during a game in Buffalo. Patriots would go on to win 12-9 in overtime (2001). pic.twitter.com/Sm3nsK3hX1
— Mark Dondero (@MarkDondero) January 22, 2023
There was no other athlete who has ever been as close to my favorite as Tom Brady. I know it’s a cliché thing to say but when Tom Brady first came onto the scene, I was in preschool. Tom Brady was my life. So, I decided to write a three-part series on the career of Tom Brady as a Patriot and the impact he has had on my life as a fan Patriots fan.
Tom Brady 2001-02
I will say that in 2001, Brady was not Brady yet. We saw him as more of a game manager. We saw he could be a clutch quarterback in the 2001 season but nobody would have ever thought to think that he could go down as the greatest player in football history.
Tom Brady has come a long way since he was just QB No. 12 in @EAMaddenNFL 2001 😂 pic.twitter.com/MmJhuXgysL
— CBS Sports (@CBSSports) February 1, 2023
Brady in 2001 was a quarterback who you could rely on to not lose the game. The Patriots had one of the best defenses for these four years and if Brady did not turn the ball over, they were going to win. Brady was chosen as the MVP in Super Bowl 36 for his heroic effort to drive the Patriots down the field to set up Vinatieri for the game-winning field goal.
Tied 17-17 with 1:21 to go. Every play from the final drive that led to @TomBrady’s first ring 💍 #SBXXXVI (Feb. 3, 2002)
📺: #SBLV — Sunday 6:30pm ET on CBS
📱: NFL app // Yahoo Sports app pic.twitter.com/OvKlkjY5W8
— NFL Legacy (@NFLLegacy) February 1, 2021
As the years progressed though Brady would turn himself into a high-caliber quarterback. Although the Patriots did not make the playoffs in 2002 Brady threw for 3,700 yards and had a 2-1 touchdown-to interception ratio. There was a four-game stretch where Brady did struggle, throwing half of his interceptions during the Patriots’ four game losing streak that season. Ultimately, that losing streak would cost them a playoff spot.
Brady 2003-2004 Back-to-Back Super Bowls
The Patriots in 2003 and 2004 may have been the two greatest Patriots teams ever. Over the course of two seasons, Brady threw 47 touchdowns to 25 interceptions and the Patriots had a combined record of 35-3 winning back-to-back titles on the leg of Adam Vinatieri again. Brady would defeat Peyton Manning in back-to-back years in the playoffs, establishing himself as one of the very best in the entire NFL if he already was not at that point.
19 years ago today Super Bowl 38 here is the full game-winning drive pic.twitter.com/FW9dRYjsoh
— RandomTomBradyHighlights (@TomBradyDaily) February 1, 2023
In his back-to-back Super Bowl victories Brady threw for 354 yards and three touchdowns and then 236 yards and two touchdowns against the Eagles in Super Bowl 39. Brady was awarded Super Bowl MVP for the second time for his effort in Super Bowl 38 against the Panthers.
16 years ago tonight, Feb 6, 2005, Super Bowl XXXIX in Jacksonville, FL
New England Patriots defeated Philadelphia Eagles 24-21 to claim their 3rd Super Bowl Championship (2nd consecutive).#dynasty #TomBrady
— Boston Radio Watch® (@bostonradio) February 6, 2021
Tom Brady for so many New Englanders was something to behold. Understanding now, how lucky and fortunate we were for so many years was something we all took for granted. All I can say was if it was not for Brady winning three out of four Super Bowls in my early years I don’t know if I ever would have been as big of a fan of football as I became. This is not as in depth as I would like but I have more memories as I grew up but this is where it all began.
Once upon a time, @TomBrady was a young lad at the 2003 QB Challenge. (via @NFLLegacy)#ProBowlGames start Thursday Feb. 2 on ESPN pic.twitter.com/Oo7Sxfb017
— NFL (@NFL) January 30, 2023
Later on this week, I will discuss the “down” years for the Patriots, Tom Brady’s MVP seasons, and how the Patriots rebounded after not winning a Super Bowl for almost a decade.
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