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Tom Brady, Jr.

Thomas Edward Patrick "Tom" Brady, Jr. (born August 3, 1977) is an American football quarterback for the New England Patriots of the National Football League (NFL). After playing college football at the University of Michigan, Tom Brady was drafted by the Patriots in the sixth round of the 2000 NFL Draft.

INTERVIEW WITH TOM BRADY
 

In Tom Brady's ten seasons as a starter, the Patriots have earned trips to the Super Bowl in five of them, winning three. Tom Brady has also won two Super Bowl MVP awards, has been selected to eight Pro Bowls, and holds the NFL record for most touchdown passes in a single regular season. His career postseason record is 16–6. Tom Brady also helped set the record for the longest consecutive win streak in NFL history with 21 straight wins over two seasons (2003–04), and in 2007 he led the Patriots to the first undefeated regular season since the institution of the 16-game schedule. Tom Brady has the fourth-highest career passer rating of all time (96.4) among quarterbacks with at least 1,500 career passing attempts.

Tom Brady and Joe Montana are the only two players in NFL history to win the NFL Most Valuable Player and Super Bowl MVP awards multiple times. Tom Brady and John Elway are the only two quarterbacks to lead their teams to five Super Bowls. Tom Brady was also named the NFL MVP in 2007 and 2010 (becoming the first player to be unanimously chosen as MVP in the 2010 season) as well as 2007 Male Athlete of the Year by the Associated Press, the first time an NFL player has been so honored since Joe Montana won the award in 1990.

Tom Brady and Bill Belichick have also combined to form one of the most successful quarterback-coach tandems in NFL history, winning 125 regular season games and 16 postseason games together, as well as appearing in five Super Bowls together, all NFL records.

Early years

Tom Brady was born in San Mateo, California, the son of Galynn Patricia (née Johnson) and Thomas Tom Brady, Sr.[1] Tom Brady has three older sisters.[2] Tom Brady was raised in a Catholic family of exceptionally gifted athletes, and is of Irish and Prussian-German descent.[3][4][5][6] Tom Brady regularly attended 49ers games in the 1980s, where he became a fan of quarterback Joe Montana; since then, Tom Brady has mentioned Montana as one of his inspirations and an idol.[7] One of the games Tom Brady attended was the 1981 NFC Championship, in which Montana threw The Catch to Dwight Clark, with Tom Brady only being four-years-old at the time.[8]

Tom Brady graduated from Junípero Serra High School in San Mateo, California.[9] Tom Brady was also drafted as a catcher in the 18th round of the 1995 MLB Draft by the Montreal Expos.[10]

College career

Tom Brady played college football for, and graduated from, the University of Michigan.[11][12] Tom Brady was a backup his first two years, while teammate and future NFL quarterback Brian Griese led the 1997 Wolverines to an undefeated season capped by a victory in the Rose Bowl and a share of the national championship. When he enrolled at Michigan, Tom Brady was seventh on the depth chart and had an intense struggle to get some playing time. At one point, Tom Brady hired a sports psychologist to help him cope with frustration and anxiety and even considered transferring to Cal.[13][14] Tom Brady battled for the starting job with Drew Henson,[12] ultimately starting every game in the 1998 and 1999 seasons under Michigan head coach Lloyd Carr. During his first full year as starter, he set Michigan records for most pass attempts and completions in a season (214).[15] Tom Brady was All-Big Ten honorable mention both seasons and team captain his senior year. The Wolverines won 20 of 25 games when he started and shared the Big Ten Conference title in 1998. Tom Brady capped that season with a win over Arkansas in the Citrus Bowl.[16] In the 1999 season, Tom Brady led Michigan to an overtime win in the Orange Bowl over Alabama, throwing for 369 yards and four touchdowns.[12]

Professional career

2000 season

Tom Brady was selected with pick #199, a compensatory pick, in the sixth round of the 2000 NFL Draft.[17] According to Michael Holley's book Patriot Reign, the Patriots were considering Tom Brady and Tim Rattay, both of whom had received positive reviews from then-quarterbacks coach Dick Rehbein.[18] Ultimately, the Patriots front office chose Tom Brady. Considering his later achievements, many analysts have called Tom Brady the best NFL draft pick of all time.[19][20][21][22]

Tom Brady started the season as the fourth string quarterback, 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.[23] During his rookie season, he was 1-of-3 passing, for six yards.[24]

2001 season

The Patriots opened the season with a 23–17 loss at Cincinnati, with Bledsoe as the starting quarterback.[24] Their second game, and home opener, on September 23, was against their AFC East rival, the New York Jets. Bledsoe was again the starter, when in the fourth quarter he suffered internal bleeding after a hit from Jets linebacker Mo Lewis. Bledsoe returned for the next series, but was replaced with Tom Brady for the Patriots' final series of the game. New York would hold on to win, 10–3, and the Patriots fell to 0–2 on the season.[25] Tom Brady was named the starter for the season's third game, against the Indianapolis Colts. In his first two games as starter, Tom Brady posted unspectacular passer ratings of 79.6 and 58.7, respectively, in a 44–13 victory over the Colts (in their last season in the AFC East) and a 30–10 loss to the Miami Dolphins.[26]

In the Pats' fifth game, Tom Brady began to find his stride. Trailing the visiting San Diego Chargers 26–16 in the fourth quarter, Tom Brady led the Patriots on two scoring drives to force overtime, and another in overtime to set up a winning field goal. Tom Brady finished the game with 33 pass completions on 54 attempts, for 364 yards, and two touchdowns.[27] The following week, Tom Brady again played well during the rematch at Indianapolis, with a passer rating of 148.3 in a 38–17 win.[28] The Patriots went on to win 11 of the 14 games Tom Brady started, and six straight to finish the regular season, winning the AFC East and entering the playoffs with a first-round bye. Tom Brady finished with 2,843 passing yards and 18 touchdowns and earned an invitation to the Pro Bowl.[24][29]

2001 postseason

In Tom Brady's first playoff game, against the Oakland Raiders, he threw for 312 yards and led the Patriots back from a ten-point fourth-quarter deficit to send the game to overtime, where they won on an Adam Vinatieri field goal. A controversial play in that game came when, trailing by three in the fourth quarter, Tom 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 even if the quarterback loses possession of the ball as he is attempting to tuck it back toward his body, referee Walt Coleman overturned the call on instant replay, ruling it an incomplete pass rather than a fumble.[30]

In the AFC Championship Game against the Pittsburgh Steelers, Tom Brady injured his knee, and was relieved by Bledsoe.[31] 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.[32]

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.[33] Instead, Tom Brady drove the Patriots' offense down the field to the Rams 31 before spiking the ball with seven seconds left. The Patriots won the game on another Adam Vinatieri field goal as time expired. Tom Brady was named MVP of Super Bowl XXXVI while throwing for 145 yards, one touchdown, and no interceptions, becoming the then-youngest quarterback to ever win a Super Bowl.[34]

2002 season

Tom Brady and the Patriots finished the year at 9–7, tied with the New York Jets and 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.[35]

Although posting a career-low single-season rating of 85.7, Tom Brady threw for a league-leading 28 touchdown passes and 921 more yards than in 2001, though his fourteen interceptions would turn out to be a career high.[26] However, Tom 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, Tom Brady would not have been able to play in the first game due to that injury.

2003 season

In the 2003 NFL season, after a 2–2 start, Tom Brady led the Patriots to twelve consecutive victories to finish the season, thus winning the AFC East.[36] Statistically, Tom Brady's strongest game of the season was against Buffalo, when he achieved a season-high quarterback rating of 122.9.[26] Tom Brady finished with 3,620 passing yards and 23 touchdowns,[24] and was second in NFL MVP voting to co-winners Peyton Manning and Steve McNair.[37] In the first two rounds of the playoffs, the Patriots defeated the Tennessee Titans and Indianapolis Colts. On February 1, 2004, Tom 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, Tom Brady threw for 354 yards with three touchdowns and set the record for most completions by a QB in a Super Bowl (32). With 1:08 left in the fourth quarter and the score tied 29–29, Tom Brady engineered a drive to put the Patriots in position for the game-winning field goal.[38]

2004 season

Tom Brady during Super Bowl XXXIX

During the 2004 season, Tom Brady helped the Patriots set an NFL record with 21 straight wins dating from the previous year, an accomplishment honored in the Pro Football Hall of Fame (though for official records, the NFL considers it an 18-game regular season winning streak; it does not count playoff games).[39] New England's 14–2 record equalled that of their 2003 season, as well as tied the best regular-season record ever for a defending champion.[40] The Patriots also won the AFC East divisional title for the third time in four years. Tom Brady threw for 3,692 yards and 28 touchdowns, with a 92.6 passer rating, and was voted to his second Pro Bowl.[24] In the AFC playoffs, Tom Brady led the Patriots to victories over the Indianapolis Colts and the Pittsburgh Steelers.[41] Tom Brady played his best game of the year in Pittsburgh despite requiring intravenous treatment the previous night when he ran a temperature of 103 degrees.[42] Against the NFL's best defensive team,[41] Tom Brady recorded a quarterback passer rating of 130.5, his highest of the season.[26] On February 6, 2005, the Tom Brady-led Patriots defeated the Philadelphia Eagles to win Super Bowl XXXIX. Tom Brady threw for 236 yards and two touchdowns[43] while capturing the Patriots' third championship in four years.

2005 season

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.[44][45] Tom Brady also had to adjust to a new center and a new running back: Heath Evans. The results were positive; Tom Brady finished first in the league with 4,110 passing yards and third in the league with 26 touchdowns.[24] At 92.3, his 2005 passer rating was the second-highest of his career at the time, although he equalled his career high for interceptions with fourteen.[26] Tom Brady also rushed for 89 yards and fumbled a career-low four times.[26] Tom Brady and the Patriots finished with a 10–6 record, winning their third straight AFC East title.[46]

In the playoffs, Tom 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 to the Denver Broncos at INVESCO Field. Tom Brady threw for 341 yards in the game with one touchdown and two interceptions, in the first playoff loss of his career.[47] After the season's end, it was revealed that Tom Brady had been playing with a sports hernia since December. Linebacker Willie McGinest commented on it and said he knew, but Tom Brady continued on playing.[48]
 
2006 season

Tom Brady led the Patriots to a 12–4 record and the fourth seed in the AFC playoffs.[49] In the regular season, Tom Brady threw for 3,529 yards and 24 touchdowns.[24] Tom Brady was not among the players initially selected to the Pro Bowl,[50] although he was offered an injury-replacement selection when Philip Rivers was forced to withdraw (which he declined).[51]

In the postseason, the Patriots first hosted their division rivals, the New York Jets, in the wild-card round. The Patriots defeated the Jets 37–16, as Tom Brady went 22–34 for 212 yards and two TDs.[52] In the divisional round, the Patriots traveled to San Diego to take on the Chargers. This was Tom Brady's first playoff game in his home state of California. Tom Brady and the Patriots struggled against the Chargers, whom many had picked as favorites to win Super Bowl XLI.[53] With eight minutes left in the fourth quarter and the Patriots down by eight points, Tom Brady and the Patriots started a key drive that would ultimately decide the game. After a 49-yard pass play to Reche Caldwell, a Stephen Gostkowski field goal gave the Patriots a 24–21 win.[54]

In the AFC championship, the Patriots faced the Indianapolis Colts. The Patriots and Colts had faced each other twice in the previous three postseasons at Foxborough; this game, however, was played at Indianapolis. The Patriots led at halftime, 21–6; however, the Colts staged a comeback, resulting in a last minute interception thrown by Tom Brady, and a Patriots loss.[55]

2007 season

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 Tom Brady; and running back Sammy Morris—Tom Brady enjoyed what some sports writers have described as the best season ever by a quarterback.[56] The average score of a 2007 Patriots regular season game would be 37–17 by the end of the year.[57] Tom Brady not only led the Patriots to a 16–0 record, outscoring opponents by more than a 2-to-1 margin, but attained numerous career, franchise, and NFL records and milestones. While away at 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.[58] The next week, in part of a 49–28 win at Miami, he had yet another record day, with six passing touchdowns, setting a franchise record. Tom Brady also had the first perfect passer rating of his career.[59] Two weeks laters, as part of a come-from-behind 24–20 victory at Indianapolis, he threw for another three touchdowns, the ninth consecutive game in which he had done so, breaking Peyton Manning's NFL record of eight.[60] During the last game of the year, Tom Brady threw two touchdown passes; his second touchdown was his 50th, breaking Peyton Manning's 2004 record of 49. For his efforts, Tom Brady was named the Most Valuable Player of this season, as well as Offensive Player of the Year. Tom Brady was also honored by the Associated Press as their Male Athlete of the Year, the first time an NFL player has been so honored since Joe Montana won the award in 1990.[61]

2007 playoffs

In the Patriots' first playoff game, an AFC Divisional game against Jacksonville, Tom Brady began the game with an NFL postseason record sixteen 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.[62] With the win, the Patriots matched the Dolphins as the only team to win 17 consecutive games in one season.

Statistically, Tom 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. Tom 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 sixteen games better than Joe Montana's.[63] In Super Bowl XLII, Tom Brady was pressured heavily and sacked five times. The Patriots did manage to take the lead with a Tom Brady touchdown to Moss with less than three minutes remaining in the fourth quarter, but the Giants were able to score a last-minute touchdown to upset the Patriots 17–14.

2008 season

Tom Brady did not play in any games during the 2008 preseason due to a right foot injury from the previous AFC Championship game.[64] In the Patriots' 2008 season opener against the Kansas City Chiefs at Gillette Stadium, Tom Brady's left knee was seriously injured midway through the first quarter on a hit by Chiefs safety Bernard Pollard; he left the game and did not return. The team later confirmed that Tom Brady would need surgery, and that he had been placed on injured reserve for the remainder of the season.[65] It is believed he tore both his anterior cruciate ligament and his medial collateral ligament.[66] The injury ended Tom Brady's streak of 111 consecutive starts (fourth in the list of most consecutive starts by an NFL quarterback, behind Brett Favre, Peyton Manning, and Ron Jaworski).[67] Dr. Neal ElAttrache performed the anterior cruciate ligament reconstruction at the Los Angeles Kerlan-Jobe Orthopaedic Clinic October 6, using Tom Brady's patellar tendon graft to replace the torn ligament, and also repaired his medial collateral ligament, through a separate incision in his left knee.[68] An infection in the wound resulted in further debridement surgery several times since the original procedure. Tom Brady received IV antibiotics for this infection which, at the time, threatened to delay his rehab.[69][70]

2009 season

In his first game back from injury, Tom Brady threw for 378 yards and two touchdowns in the 2009 season opener against the Buffalo Bills. In the final minutes of the game, the Patriots were down 24–13 before Tom Brady and Benjamin Watson connected on two straight touchdowns to lead the Patriots to a 25–24 win. Tom Brady was named the AFC Offensive Player of the Week for the 13th time in his career for his performance.[71]

On October 18, 2009, in an early season snowstorm, Tom Brady set an NFL record against the Tennessee Titans for most touchdowns in a single quarter, throwing five in the second quarter. Tom Brady finished the game with six touchdowns, tying his career best, and 380 yards, completing 29 of 34 attempts, finishing with a nearly perfect passer rating of 152.8.[72] The Patriots' 59–0 victory over the Titans tied the record for the largest margin of victory since the 1970 AFL-NFL merger,[73] and set a record for largest halftime lead in NFL history (they led 45–0).

Tom Brady would finish the 2009 regular season with 4,398 yards passing and 28 touchdowns for a 96.2 rating,[24] despite a broken right ring finger and three fractured ribs, all which were suffered over the course of the season.[74] Tom Brady was selected as a reserve to the 2010 Pro Bowl and named the 2009 NFL Comeback Player of the Year.[75]

Tom Brady ended the 2009 season throwing 3 interceptions in a Wild Card playoff loss to the Baltimore Ravens, 33–14, his first career home playoff loss, and the first playoff loss at home by a New England Patriots quarterback since 1978.[76]

2010 season

On September 10, 2010, Tom Brady signed a four-year, $72 million contract extension making him the highest-paid player in the NFL. The extension included $48.5 million in guaranteed money and will likely keep Tom Brady with the Patriots through the 2014 NFL season.[77]

Tom Brady became the quickest to achieve 100 regular season wins by helping his team defeat the Miami Dolphins 41–14 on October 4, 2010.[78]

On November 21, 2010, Tom Brady tied Brett Favre's record of winning 25 consecutive regular-season home starts, in a 31–28 win over the Indianapolis Colts.[79] Tom Brady's last regular-season loss at home was on November 12, 2006, a 17–14 loss to the New York Jets.[80] On December 6, 2010, Tom Brady set an NFL record by winning 26 consecutive regular-season home starts, in a 45–3 victory over the New York Jets.[81]

Tom Brady threw for 3,900 yards with 36 touchdowns and just four interceptions on the season.[24] Tom Brady had an 111.0 passer rating, giving him, at the time, two of the top five season ratings in NFL history, and making him the first player to finish with a rating above 110 in two different seasons.[82]

Tom Brady was selected as a starter to the 2011 Pro Bowl. However, he pulled out of the game (and was replaced by former backup Matt Cassel of the Kansas City Chiefs) after undergoing surgery for a stress fracture in his right foot dating back to 2008.[83] Tom Brady was also the only unanimous selection for the AP All-Pro Team and was named the 2010 Associated Press NFL Offensive Player of the Year. Tom Brady also achieved, by unanimous decision, the MVP award for the second time in his career.[84]

2011 season

Tom Brady in Denver, Colorado, on December 18, 2011, as the Patriots and Broncos were set to play.
In Week 1 of the 2011 NFL season, Tom Brady threw for 517 yards and 4 touchdowns, with one interception, against the Miami Dolphins, the second time he had thrown for 400 or more yards in a single game.[85][86]

In the regular season finale against the Buffalo Bills, Tom Brady became the fourth quarterback to throw for 5,000 yards in a single season, finishing with 5,235; it surpassed Dan Marino's longstanding record of 5,084 passing yards, but finished the season second behind Drew Brees' 5,476.[24]

2011 postseason

In the Patriots' 45–10 rout of the Denver Broncos in the Divisional round, Tom Brady set a personal postseason best with 363 passing yards, and tied an NFL record shared by Daryle Lamonica and Steve Young, throwing for 6 touchdown passes.[87] The win, his first postseason win since January 2008, gave Tom Brady and Patriots head coach Bill Belichick sole possession of the NFL record for postseason wins by a QB-coach combo with 15.[88] In the AFC Championship game against the Baltimore Ravens, Tom Brady failed to throw a touchdown pass for the first time in 36 games, though he did pass for 239 yards and scored a 1-yard rushing touchdown late in the game. The Patriots were the beneficiaries of a missed field goal from Ravens kicker Billy Cundiff that saw the Tom Brady and Patriots reach their fifth Super Bowl since Tom Brady joined the team.[89] In Super Bowl XLVI, Tom Brady and the Patriots met the New York Giants, meeting in the Championship for the second time in five years. Tom Brady played well, leading a Super Bowl record-tying 96-yard touchdown drive to close the first half and at one point completing 16 passes in the row for a 20/23 mark partway into the third quarter, another Super Bowl record. In all, he recorded two touchdowns, one interception, and was penalized for intentional grounding in the end zone, leading to a crucial safety for the Giants. A final score of 21–17 for the Giants would keep Tom Brady from winning his fourth Super Bowl.[90]

Personal life

Tom Brady dated actress Bridget Moynahan from 2004 until late 2006.[91] On February 18, 2007, Moynahan confirmed to People magazine that she was more than three months pregnant with her and Tom Brady's child.[91][92] Tom Brady and Moynahan ended their relationship sometime in early December 2006, around the time Moynahan became pregnant.[93] Tom Brady was present when their son, John Edward Thomas Moynahan,[94] was born on August 22, 2007 at Saint John's Health Center in Santa Monica, California.[95] John's middle names are Tom Brady's own first and middle names in reverse order, while Moynahan's father's first name is Edward.

Tom Brady married Brazilian supermodel Gisele Bündchen on February 26, 2009 in an intimate Catholic ceremony in Santa Monica.[96][97] On September 11, 2009, Tom Brady confirmed to ESPN that they were expecting their first child together, and that Bündchen was due in December 2009.[98] Bündchen gave birth to their son, Benjamin Rein Tom Brady, on December 8, 2009.[99] Benjamin's middle name is a shortened version of Bündchen's father's name Reinoldo.[100] They christened their six-month-old son in Santa Monica on June 22, 2010.[3] The couple is expecting their second child in December 2012.

Tom Brady has also been featured as a guest star on some popular television programs, hosting Saturday Night Live in 2005[101] and appearing on The Simpsons in 2005 and Family Guy in 2006, with both episodes ("Homer and Ned's Hail Mary Pass and "Patriot Games") being football themed and broadcast within a week of that year's Super Bowl.[102][103]