QUARTERBACK TOM BRADY
ALL ABOUT TOM
Thomas Edward Brady, Jr. (born August 3, 1977) is an American football quarterback for the New England Patriots of the National Football League. After playing college football at Michigan, Brady was drafted by the Patriots in the sixth round of the 2000 NFL Draft.
Due to his strong performances both in the regular season and the postseason (1 NFL MVP, 2 Super Bowl MVPs), Brady is widely regarded as one of the best quarterbacks of his era. He has played in four Super Bowls, winning three of them (XXXVI, XXXVIII, XXXIX). He has also won two Super Bowl MVP awards (XXXVI and XXXVIII), has been invited to four Pro Bowls, and holds the NFL record for most touchdown passes in a single regular season. Brady was named as Sports Illustrated's Sportsman of the Year, in 2005. He also helped set the record for the longest consecutive win streak in NFL history with 21 straight wins over two seasons.
He was named "Sportsman of the Year" by The Sporting News for the second time in his career. He was also named the NFL MVP, as well as Male Athlete of the Year by the Associated Press, the first time he has received that honor, and the first time an NFL player has been honored since Joe Montana won in 1990.
2000 and 2001 seasons
Brady was selected with pick #199, a compensatory pick, of the 2000 NFL Draft. According to Michael Holley's book Patriot Reign, the Patriots were considering Brady and Tim Rattay, both of whom had received positive reviews from then-quarterbacks coach Dick Rehbein. Ultimately, the Patriots front office chose Brady, a decision that a 2007 NFL Network special deemed the greatest "steal" in the history of the NFL Draft. Brady worked his way from the fourth string, behind starter Drew Bledsoe and backups John Friesz and Michael Bishop; by season's end, he was number two on the depth chart behind Bledsoe. During his rookie season, he was 1-for-3 passing, for 6 yards.
Brady was thrust into the starter's role on September 23, 2001, during a home game against their AFC East rivals, the New York Jets. In that game, which the Patriots lost, Bledsoe suffered internal bleeding after a collision with Jets linebacker Mo Lewis. Later that week, Brady was named the Patriots' starting quarterback. In his first two games, Brady posted unspectacular passer ratings of 79.6 and 58.7, respectively, in a 44-3 victory over the Indianapolis Colts (in their last season in the AFC East) and a 30-10 loss to the Miami Dolphins. Brady played much better during the rematch at Indianapolis, with a passer rating of 148.3 in a 38-17 win. The Patriots won 11 of the 14 games Brady started, entering the playoffs with a first-round bye.
In Brady's first playoff game, against the Oakland Raiders, Brady threw for 312 yards, and led the Patriots back from a 10-point fourth-quarter deficit to send the game to overtime, where they won on an Adam Vinatieri field goal. The most controversial play of that game came when, trailing by three in the fourth quarter, Brady lost control of the ball after being hit by fellow Wolverine Charles Woodson. Oakland initially recovered the ball, but, citing the "tuck rule," which states that any forward throwing motion by a quarterback begins a pass, referee Walt Coleman overturned that call on instant replay, ruling it an incomplete pass rather than a fumble.
In the AFC Championship Game against the Pittsburgh Steelers, Brady injured his ankle, and was relieved by Bledsoe. The Patriots won the game and were immediately instituted by Las Vegas oddsmakers as 14-point underdogs against the NFC champion St. Louis Rams in Super Bowl XXXVI.
The score was tied with 1:21 left in the Super Bowl and the Patriots were at their own 15--with no timeouts--when sportscaster and Super Bowl-winning coach John Madden said he thought the Patriots should run out the clock and try to win the game in overtime. Instead, Brady drove the Patriots offense down the field to the Rams 31 before spiking the ball with 8 seconds left. The Patriots won the game on another Adam Vinatieri field goal as time expired. Brady was named MVP of Super Bowl XXXVI while throwing for 145 yards, one touchdown, and no interceptions.
Tom Brady and the Patriots finished the year at 9–7, tied with the New York Jets and the Miami Dolphins for the best record in the division. However, the Jets won the division on the third tiebreaker, and the Patriots missed the playoffs.
Although posting a career-low single-season rating of 85.7, Brady threw for a league-leading 28 touchdown passes, though his 14 interceptions would turn out to be a career high. However, Brady played much of the second half of the season with a shoulder injury, and New England head coach Bill Belichick has since indicated that if the Patriots had made the playoffs, Brady would not have been able to play in the first game due to that injury. Brady continues to suffer from shoulder complications, but it has not led to a missed start.
In the 2003 NFL season, after a 2-2 start, Brady led the Patriots to 12 consecutive victories to finish the season and win the AFC East. Statistically, Brady's strongest game of the season was against Buffalo, when he achieved a season-high quarterback rating of 122.9. In the first two rounds of the playoffs, the Patriots defeated the Tennessee Titans and Indianapolis Colts. On February 1, 2004, Brady led the Patriots to a 32-29 victory over the NFC champion Carolina Panthers in Super Bowl XXXVIII and was named Super Bowl MVP for the second time. During the game, Brady threw for 354 yards with 3 touchdowns and set the record for most completions by a QB in the Super Bowl (32). With 1:08 left in the fourth quarter and the score tied at 29, Brady engineered a drive to put the Patriots in position for the game-winning field goal.
During the 2004 season, Brady helped the Patriots set an NFL record with 21 straight wins dating from the previous year, an accomplishment now memorialized in the Pro Football Hall of Fame (officially, though, the NFL considers it an 18-game regular season winning streak; it does not count playoff games). New England's 14-2 record matched that of the 2003 season and equaled the best record ever for a defending champion. The Patriots also won the AFC East divisional title for the third time in four years. In the AFC playoffs, Brady led the Patriots to victories over the Indianapolis Colts and the Pittsburgh Steelers. Brady played his best game of the year in Pittsburgh despite requiring IV treatment the previous night when he had a temperature of 103 degrees. Against the NFL's best defensive team, Brady recorded a quarterback passer rating of 130.5, his highest of the season. On February 6, 2005, the Brady-led Patriots defeated the Philadelphia Eagles to win Super Bowl XXXIX. Brady threw for 236 yards and 2 touchdowns, most of which to Deion Branch, while capturing the Patriots' third NFL championship in four years.
During the 2005 season, the Patriots were forced to rely more on Tom Brady's passing due to injuries suffered by running backs Corey Dillon, Patrick Pass, and Kevin Faulk. Brady also had to adjust to a new center and a new running back: Heath Evans. The results were positive; Brady finished first in the league with 4,110 passing yards and third in the league with 26 touchdowns. At 92.3, his 2005 passer rating was the second highest of his career, although he tied his worst interception total (14). He also rushed for 89 yards and fumbled a career-low 4 times. Brady and the injured Patriots finished with a 10-6 record and obtained their third straight AFC East title. Some of the highlights of the season included another game with the Steelers, in which Brady helped lead the team on the game winning drive. When the Patriots visited the Atlanta Falcons, Brady achieved a regular season-high rating of 140.3.
In the playoffs, Brady led the Patriots to a 28-3 victory over the Jacksonville Jaguars in the Wild Card Round. However, on January 14, 2006, the Patriots lost 27-13 against the Denver Broncos at INVESCO Field. Brady threw for 346 yards in the game and a touchdown with two interceptions. It was the first playoff loss of Brady's career. After the season's end, it was revealed that Brady had been playing with a sports hernia since December. Linebacker Willie McGinest commented on it and said he knew, but Brady continued on playing. This is the main reason Brady did not go to the Pro Bowl when he was invited.
Despite not playing in the game, Brady was present at Super Bowl XL, as the official coin tosser and as part of a celebration of Super Bowl MVP Award winners.
Brady led the Patriots to a 12-4 record and the fourth seed in the AFC playoffs despite having an almost completely new receiving corps. In the regular season Brady threw for 3,529 yards and 24 touchdowns. He was not among the players initially selected to the Pro Bowl, although he was offered an injury-replacement selection when another player withdrew (which he declined).
In the postseason the Patriots first hosted their long time bitter division rivals the New York Jets in the wild-card round. The Patriots defeated the Jets 37-16 and Brady went 22-34 for 212 yards and 2 TDs. In the Divisional Round the Patriots traveled to San Diego to take on the Chargers. This was Brady's first playoff game in his home state of California. Brady and the Patriots struggled against the Chargers, whom many had picked as favorites to win Super Bowl 41. With 8 minutes left in the 4th quarter and the Patriots down by 8 points Brady and the Patriots started a key drive that would ultimately decide the game. After a 49 yard pass play to Reche Caldwell, a Gostkowski field goal gave the Patriots a 24-21 win.
In the AFC Championship Game the Patriots faced the Indianapolis Colts. The Patriots and Colts had faced each other in the postseason 2 times previously in the last 3 seasons, however this game was played in Indianapolis. The Patriots had a great start and led at halftime 21-6. However, the Colts staged a comeback, resulting in a last minute interception thrown by Brady, and a Patriots loss.
Playing with a dramatically overhauled receiver corps—in the 2007 offseason, the Patriots acquired wide receivers Donté Stallworth, Wes Welker, Kelley Washington and Randy Moss; tight end Kyle Brady; and running back Sammy Morris—Brady enjoyed what some sports writers have described as the best season ever by a quarterback. Brady, along with Moss, decided to pull out of the 2008 Pro Bowl. Brady not only led the Patriots to a 16-0 record, outscoring opponents by more than a 2-to-1 margin, but reached numerous career, franchise, and NFL records and milestones as well:
Week 6: Visiting Dallas, he had a career-high five passing touchdowns in a 48-27 win. The win tied him with Roger Staubach for the most wins ever by a starting quarterback in his first 100 regular-season games, with 76.
Week 7: In a 49-28 win at Miami, he had yet another record day, with six passing touchdowns, setting a franchise record. He also had the first perfect passer rating of his career, and the first in Patriots history.
Week 8: In a 52-7 rout at home against Washington, he threw three touchdowns, giving him a career-best 30 for the season; his previous best was 28—in an entire season—in 2002 and 2004.
Week 9: In a come-from-behind 24-20 victory at Indianapolis, he threw for another three touchdowns, for a total of 33 on the season; his 32nd touchdown of the season, to Wes Welker, broke Babe Parilli's Patriots record of 31 touchdowns in a season—in five fewer games. It was also the ninth consecutive game in which he had thrown three or more touchdowns, breaking Peyton Manning's NFL record of eight.
Week 11: Following the Patriots' bye week, Brady threw for another five touchdown passes in a 56-10 rout of Buffalo, breaking Steve Grogan's franchise record for career touchdown passes with 185.
Week 12: In a narrow 31-28 win over Philadelphia, he only threw for a single touchdown, ending his streak of three-touchdown games at ten, but did reach 25,000 regular-season passing yards.
Week 13: In another come-from-behind win, a 27-24 win against the Baltimore Ravens, he became the fourth quarterback—after Kurt Warner, Peyton Manning, and Dan Marino (who did it twice)—to throw 40 touchdown passes in a season.
Week 14: In a 34-13 victory against Pittsburgh, he threw four touchdowns, putting him third all-time for touchdown passes in a single season with 45, behind Manning in 2004 and Marino in 1984. It was his eleventh game with at least three touchdown passes, beating Dan Marino's 1984 record of ten. He also reached the 4,000 yards passing mark for only the second time in his career. Tom Brady on the sideline with teammates Randy Moss and Jabar Gaffney, after throwing for his record-breaking 50th passing touchdown of the season at Giants Stadium.
Week 15: Brady, making his 108th consecutive regular-season start at quarterback, surpassed Joe Ferguson for the fourth-longest streak in NFL history, after Brett Favre, Peyton Manning, and Ron Jaworski.
Week 16: Brady's third touchdown of the day was the Patriots' 71st total touchdown of the season, breaking the NFL record of 70 set by the Miami Dolphins in 1984. This was his twelfth game of the season with three or more touchdown passes, extending his own NFL record. This was also the Patriots', and Brady's, 18th consecutive regular-season win, tying the NFL record they set in 2003 and 2004.
Week 17: Brady threw two touchdown passes; his second touchdown was his 50th, breaking Peyton Manning's 2004 record of 49. The pass was also Randy Moss' 23rd touchdown catch of the season, breaking Jerry Rice's record of 22 in a season. The win finished off the first 16-0 season in NFL history, and was the Patriots' 19th consecutive regular season win, breaking their own 2003-2004 record of 18. Brady finished 398/578 for 4,806 yards (#3 all-time) and 50 touchdowns (#1 all time) versus 8 interceptions, and a 117.2 passer rating (#2 all-time). His 398 completions was 5th all-time.
In the Patriots' first playoff game, an AFC Divisional game against Jacksonville, Brady began the game with an NFL postseason record 16 consecutive completed passes, and finished the game with 26 completions in 28 attempts, a completion rate of 92.9%. That mark is the highest single-game completion percentage (for passers with at least 20 attempts) in NFL history, regular season or postseason, bettering both Phil Simms' 22 of 25 performance in Super Bowl XXI and Vinny Testaverde's 21 of 23 mark in 1993 with the Cleveland Browns. With the win, the Patriots matched the Dolphins as the only team to win 17 consecutive games in one season.
Statistically, Brady did not fare as well in the AFC Championship Game against the San Diego Chargers, throwing three interceptions (including his first interception in the red zone since the playoff loss to Denver). Nevertheless, the Patriots won their 18th game of the season, 21-12, to advance to the Super Bowl for the fourth time in seven seasons. Brady, with the 100th win of his career, also set an NFL record for the fewest games needed by a starting quarterback to do so: his 100-26 record is 16 games better than Joe Montana's. In Super Bowl XLII, Brady was pressured heavily and was sacked five times. The Patriots did manage to take the lead with a Brady touchdown to Moss with less than three minutes remaining in the fourth quarter. It appeared that Brady had led another game-winning Super Bowl drive, but the Giants were able to score a last-minute touchdown to upset the Patriots 17-14.
Brady won numerous NFL awards during the season: he was voted FedEx Express NFL Player of the Week (an award for quarterbacks) four times (in Weeks 6, 7, 11, and 17), selected as AFC Offensive Player of the Week five times (in Weeks 3, 6, 7, 14, and 17), and AFC Offensive Player of the Month for both September and October. On 2008-01-05, Brady was named the NFL MVP, garnering a record-tying 49 of 50 possible votes (the only other vote went to Brett Favre), making him the first Patriot to ever win the award. He was also named NFL Offensive Player of the Year, receiving 35.5 of 50 votes.
Highest single-game quarterback rating: 158.3 (at Miami, October 21, 2007)
Highest single-season quarterback rating: 117.2 (2007)
Highest total passing touchdowns in a game: 6 (at Miami, October 21, 2007)
Highest total passing touchdowns in a regular season: 50 (2007)
Lowest interception total, season (minimum 2 starts): 8 (2007)
Largest touchdown to interception difference: +42 (2007)
21-game win streak statistics
690 passes attempted
412 passes completed
4,953 passing yards
34 passing touchdowns
13 passes intercepted
20.29 passing attempts per touchdown
53.07 passing attempts per interception
59.71 completion rate
90.3 passer rating
86-24 (regular season), 100-27 (career) as a starter
19.00 passing attempts per touchdown (career)
43.23 passing attempts per interception (career)
7-0 (career) in overtime games
30-6 (career) in games decided by 3 points or fewer
11-2 (career) in dome stadiums
38-2 (career) on artificial surfaces
27-5 (career) vs NFC teams
84-1 (regular season) when the Patriots have a lead at any time in the fourth quarter
28 game-winning drives after a Patriots' fourth-quarter tie or deficit
Post-season records and statistics
NFL record for most consecutive wins in post season: 10 (broke record of Green Bay's Bart Starr).
Most consecutive post season wins (college and professional combined): 12
3 Super Bowl victories
2 Super Bowl MVP awards
Most completions in a Super Bowl (32 in Super Bowl XXXVIII)
Most career Super Bowl completions (100 in four games)
Highest completion percentage in a single game, minimum 20 attempts (26 of 28, 92.9%, against Jacksonville in 2007 AFC Divisional round)