Tom Brady: GOAT?

Tom Brady Trophy

 

SECOND EDIT 2/5/2017: ok. He won his fifth ring. I’m not going to disagree with anybody who says he’s the Goat. I’m not going to say it, but I won’t say you’re wrong. Congrats on another championship,  Pats fans.

EDIT 2/5/2017: For those of you who are slow readers, this article was written February 2, 2015 and reflected my personal opinion at the time about Tom Brady’s status as it relates to the title “GOAT.”  I stand by what I wrote at the time.  For what it’s worth, Tom Brady is an amazing quarterback, and I now believe him to be one of the greatest of all time, but for several reasons, you will never see me giving him the title GOAT.  There’s the cloud of cheating that hovers over the Patriots and the fact that it’s really hard to attribute all of the success of a football team (which has 22 starting players per game) to just one man.  All of you make a strong case for Tom, but please stop trying to convince me.  He’s a hall of fame QB, and by all accounts, a really decent person.  I wish him every success, while I root against his team because I don’t like the Patriots.  That’s my right.  And it’s your right to keep leaving insulting comments.  And it’s my right to keep screening them and deleting them before they ever see the light of day.   Now let’s have a clean game tonight with no injuries and congratulations to the winners!

ORIGINAL POST AS OF 2/2/15: So the Patriots won the Super Bowl last night.  Congratulations to their players and fans. But something is bothering me today about the media coverage.  I keep hearing the term GOAT in reference to Brady. GOAT is a term that sports people use to mean “Greatest Of All Time.” Two examples of people that some would consider the GOAT for their respective sports would be Michael Jordan and Wayne Gretzky.

But today, a day after his fourth Super Bowl victory, I keep hearing the question, “Does this win mean that Tom Brady is the best QB ever?” I’ve heard people on social media saying it, the news media, and pundits within the NFL.

The answer to that question depends on how you define the word “best” (or “greatest”). If you define best as quarterback with the most Super Bowl rings, Tom Brady is tied with Joe Montana and Terry Bradshaw at 4 each. So, not the best if you measure by that criterion alone.

Most MVP awards? Peyton Manning.
Most touchdown passes? Peyton Manning again (Brady comes in fifth).
Most completed passes? Brett Favre.
Most 4th quarter comebacks? Peyton Manning.
Highest passer rating? Aaron Rodgers.

I looked at the statistics available at Pro-Football Reference and couldn’t find Tom Brady listed at the top in any measurable category.

Is Tom Brady a great quarterback? Certainly. Is he among the top ten quarterbacks ever to play the game? Absolutely. But is he the greatest quarterback ever? Not even close.

There's only one goat in this picture.

There’s only one goat in this picture.

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About Steve Picray

I have been many things, but right now I am a registered nurse attempting to pay off my debt so that, God willing, I can be a pastor again someday. I have a wife and three kids. I am a conservative Christian (of the Baptist variety). This blog is about me: the things that happen to me, the things that interest me, and the things that bother me. If you have a question, just e-mail me at spicray AT gmail DOT com. God Bless!
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43 Responses to Tom Brady: GOAT?

  1. Stephen says:

    This really was a poorly put together piece of writing and shows clear lack of knowledge and laziness. You don’t answer the question at all, you just say it depends basically and say Brady can’t be than who is because there can’t be 6 greatest of all time hence the whole ‘greatest’ part. You leave out so many important statistics and simply just discredit Brady by putting those that he doesn’t lead in, let alone mention lets say an undefeated season, super bowl appearances, come from behind victories (clutch), post season record (I’d like to see his compared to Peyton Manning’s), consistently being a contender for years, and conference championship appearances. No team had ever came back from a 10 point or more deficit in the 4th quarter of a Super Bowl before that game it’s sad that you can’t appreciate greatness in front of your eyes.

    • Steve Picray says:

      Why don’t you tell me how you really feel?

      Seriously though, Stephen. Lack of knowledge and laziness? Let me spell it out for you: Tom Brady is a great quarterback. If you’ll notice that I even mentioned he’s probably one of the top ten quarterbacks of all time. But is Tom Brady the GREATEST QB of all time? I say no.

      I don’t answer the question? The question was simply “Is Brady the GOAT” and the answer is in the last line of the post, Mr. Didn’t Read It To The End.

      What statistics did I leave out? I posted a link to the website with the stats, and like I said in the post, Tom doesn’t lead in ANY of the records. I take that back, he IS tied for first in “longest pass thrown” at 99 yards, along with twelve other quarterbacks hardly something that makes him the “Greatest.”

      I didn’t just put those stats Brady doesn’t lead in. I listed every stat he “leads” in, which is to say none of them.

      Undefeated season? Earl Morrall did that with the 1972 Dolphins. Super Bowl appearances? Yes, Tom Brady has been in six Super Bowls, but he only won four of them, and if we’re handing out awards for just making it to the Super Bowl, the 1990’s Bills and Jim Kelly have some props due. I did mention that he has won as many Super Bowls as two other QB’s, so he doesn’t lead there either.

      Come from behind victories? Funny you should mention that. The website I linked in my post has a listing for that, and it’s right here. Guess who leads? Peyton Manning with 41. Brady is tied for third with 35.

      Postseason record? That stat isn’t listed at the website I was using (pro football reference), but you are correct; Tom Brady has the record with 29 post season games and 21 wins.

      If you want to talk about coming from behind, I really enjoyed the AFC Championship game on January 21st, 2007 where the Colts overcame a 15 point deficit to beat Tom Brady and the Patriots 38-34.

      In closing, Stephen, even though you called me lazy and ignorant, I will allow that you are just being homerish in your love for Tom Brady. Who do I think is the GOAT in the NFL? That’s a good question, and I don’t have an answer. At this point I’d lean towards Peyton Manning with his dominance of a lot of the records, but yes, he does only have one ring, where Tom Brady has four. When it really comes down to it, either one of these guys would be great to have on your team, and I’m sure you can agree that, for the time that we’ve had them, the other 30 teams were probably envious of our QB’s, right?

      EDIT: Notice I was nice and didn’t mention that Tom Brady’s record is tainted by the fact that the Patriots have been proven to cheat multiple times. Oh wait, I just did.

      I still think he’s a great QB though.

      • gannsilv says:

        And lol your moderating comments? I’m done. I imagine many people already made most of the same points I did but they weren’t allowed to be posted because you didn’t want to look bad. Your a coward. Later!

        • Steve Picray says:

          Two things:

          1. You make judgments without all the evidence. I moderate comments because there’s been a few times when I have been attacked on my blog from people who disagree with me. The simplest solution was to moderate comments to weed out the ones that were simply attacks.

          2. Moderating allows me to reject comments that include foul language, like the blasphemy that your first comment included. I would have allowed your comment in its entirety, except for the point where you used my Lord’s name as a curse word. That’s an automatic rejection. Your assertion that I reject all comments that disagree with me is asinine, however. If you look at just the comments on this Tom Brady post, I allowed comments that disagreed with me. I even left in all your grammatical errors. For your information, I haven’t rejected any comments on this post.

        • Steve Picray says:

          And for those of you playing at home, here is gannsilv’s comment in italics without the blasphemy, so I can respond to it.

          And your reply to him shows your clear bias against tom brady. The answer you didn’t provide is “whos better?” Joe montana isn’t close to any of those passing records either but he was unanimously considered the goat before brady matched his ring total. Bradshaw isn’t close because he has 212 TdS to 200 ints. It’s a combination of stats, regular season success, and post season success, and joe montana and tom brady are the only two to never have a bad year in any of those categories. Brady tho, has the advantage in every area except for the Super Bowl record, which could be argued was because brady played in a more balanced era. The NFC, from 1982-1997, had a 15-1 record against the afc. and that’s including Montana’s 4-0…which means every other NFC team was 11-1 in the same game. So yea..who’s better?

          The answer I didn’t provide to a question I didn’t ask. You say the question is “who’s better” when the question I was asking was “Is Tom Brady the GOAT?” You make some good points, but I’m not biased against Brady. I said repeatedly in the post and in the comments that I think he’s one of the top quarterbacks, I’m just not convinced he’s the greatest of all time. Perhaps if he wasn’t stained with the cheating that the Patriots have been guilty of. And you can pooh-pooh the cheating, but it happened.

          Also, if you look at the records (like I did in my original post), the only area that Tom Brady leads is….well…he doesn’t. He doesn’t lead in anything. Not Super Bowl wins, not passing, not touchdowns, etc. It’s like you’re saying ‘He has four super bowl rings and other than that he’s pretty good, so he’s the greatest of all time.” I’m saying there’s no clear answer to the question “who’s better”. What would you say if in ten years Andrew Luck, hypothetically, held all the records Peyton, Brett, and Aaron currently hold, and he had five super bowl rings. Would you say he’s the GOAT? I would say he’s the leading candidate at that point. Not right now though.

      • John says:

        Funny! First of all that game the colts came back in was one of the worst refereed games of all times Peyton manning was giving two 70 plus yard pass interference calls that were absolutely not ther. We were absolutely robbed. I was not mad about losing to NYG twice. I was mad at that loss due to the referees. That was awful those two penalties were basically two free touchdowns for the colts. But w/e. Also brady has the highest winning percentage how about that. He did all this with for the most part nobody elite. Also brady would throw 4 tds in the first half and just not try to score anymore Tds. Also the colts his home gave up on manning. That’s says a lot. Tom Brady owns all the postseason records. For you to say he is not even close to being the goat, it’s just funny

        • John says:

          Ohh even the commentators were baffled at the penalties!

          • Steve Picray says:

            John, do you have video of this? I remember that game vividly, and I don’t remember there being any questionable penalties. I’d love to see your proof.

            • Ton says:

              Steven,

              You are an idiot and have no idea what defines a great quarterback. It’s not about most touchdowns, it’s not about most pass completions or MVP’s. It’s about winning. And no other quarterback in the history of football has won as often with as minimal a cast of offensive weapons as Tom Brady. Granted he had Randy Moss for all of two seasons. Other than that you can’t list another receiver that had been remotely effective prior to or since playing with Brady. WHY? I’m glad you asked, it’s because he makes mediocre players look like All Pros and he has do it his entire career. Montana had the best receiver in history. Bradshaw had one of the best defenses in history. Manning not only had Harrison but also had James as an All Pro running back for years! Think for a moment, if you can objectively, if Brady had the weapons that Manning did for the majority of his career how many Super Bowls do you think he would have. 6? That’s probably a conservative number. You should try and keep your ridiculous, uneducated comments and onions to yours from now on. You just sound stupid. I can’t believe you listed most completions as evidence to your point!

        • Steve Picray says:

          Isn’t it funny how the losing team’s fans always cry about the refs?

          “not try to score anymore”? That’s laughable, because he and Belichik would run the score up so often it’s not funny.

          “the colts his home gave up on Peyton manning” Not sure what you mean by this, but if you’re referring to how Peyton left Indianapolis, you don’t know what you’re talking about.

          And I never said Tom Brady is “not even close to being the GOAT”. I said he’s in the top ten. Boy, you patsies really have trouble with reading comprehension.

      • tom says:

        He is the Greatest of all time and tonight proved that! ooops old article I time traveled again on the internet to the past to tell you from the future 2/5/17 that you are wrong he is the GOAT

    • Ragiron says:

      Of course there can be 6 Goats, maybe in different categories. Why does one have to be the best? It’s normal in sports that several contenders are at the same leverl, having different strengths amd weaknesses.

  2. Brady has the highest passer rate right now not Aaron rodgers. Brady is well on his way to a top seed for the afc. We all know what happens to teams in foxborough. Is it to early to start thinking number 5? Possibly. But you also neglected to mention he is the only quarterback to go to the big game 6 times in 13 seasons (he was out with a knee injury 1 season.) If he should make it this year he would have made the SB 50% of his career. You define quarterbacks by their rings not some measly stats. We don’t say lebron isn’t as good as jordan because of anything other than championships. This is no different. Now TB just needs to hit 5 and he will take the reigns of being the the GOAT.

    • Steve Picray says:

      Well, with a name like “tb12effgoodell” I’m sure you are unbiased and fair in your analysis of who the best QB is.

      That being said, Brady has the highest passer rating NOW for the 2015 season. He does NOT hold the passer rate record for single season (Rodgers), Career (Rodgers), or Career Active (Rodgers). And if you will note, I wrote this blog post in February, before any of the 2015 games had been played.

      Yes, we know what happens to teams in Foxborough. In the past five years their home game record is 36-4. Pretty impressive.

      Actually you don’t define quarterbacks by rings. You define them by rings, stats, length of career, durability, and all sorts of things.

      And yes, we do say LeBron isn’t as good as Jordan, because Jordan IS the GOAT in basketball.

      If Tom Brady wins another Super Bowl, we can revisit this conversation, but what all you Patriot homers keep missing in my post is that I’m not saying he’s BAD, I’m saying he might not be the GREATEST. And that’s upsetting, I can understand, because he’s YOUR guy. I get it. I even said he’s in the top ten all time. I would go so far as to say the top five.

      But again, that comes with a big asterisk. If he and the Patriots hadn’t cheated, would he be as good as he is with as many rings? Possibly. Probably. But we’ll never know, will we?

  3. Brady is the best right now. Best passer rating, no int’s and on par with his infamous 2007 season as the only qb to go 16-0. Brady has hit the SB 6/13 seasons minus the season he was out with injury. No qb has ever gone 6 times. If he should go this year and there is no evident team to the contrary it would be 7/14 reaching the SB 50% in his career. If he should win it would put him as the undisputed GOAT. Jordan in the nba is the best because of his championships nothing else. Thats why everybody gives lebron crap until he can surpass. Brady is tied and should be treated as such. Currently their is a 3 way tie for the GOAT and a definite possibility of him breaking it this year.

    • Steve Picray says:

      That’s if championships are the only thing that matter. What if Brady got injured in week 16, and your backup (I don’t know who that is, but I bet you do) took over, leading the team to the playoffs and a Super Bowl ring. Now Brady has five rings. Is he now the GOAT in your book, even though he had nothing to do with the playoff run?

  4. Brian says:

    You know where else you see Peyton Manning as #1 on the list and you don’t see brady on the list at all? Interceptions

    • Steve Picray says:

      Yes, Peyton Manning is #1 on the list for most interceptions among active quarterbacks. The point of this post was not to compare Peyton and Tom. Totally not the point of this post. The point was to express my opinions about whether or not Tom Brady is the GOAT, and my assessment is that no, he is not. He’s a great quarterback, but he is not the greatest. And the fact that this post has devolved into Patriots homers calling me an idiot has made me close the comments section.

  5. Lou says:

    Need to update this

    • Steve Picray says:

      I disagree for two reasons.

      1. This post was my assessment in January 2015 and was not meant to be a constantly updated post.

      2. Nothing has changed since I wrote the post. Brady still leads in no categories as far as records go. He hasn’t won another super bowl ring. Why should I update my assessment that he isn’t the GOAT?

      • B G says:

        Michael Jordan is the GOAT and no one argues with that but he’s 4th in points scored – probably the most important stat in basketball yet no one questions him being the goat because it was more than scoring points – it was bringing his team to the championship. and he did that 6 times in 15 years. Brady is doing it for the 7th time

        • Steve Picray says:

          You make a good point. If Brady wins another Super Bowl, I would have to reconsider my statement that I don’t think he’s the GOAT. However, the Patriots’ established history of skirting the rules does put a dent in his legacy.

  6. Linda Wallace says:

    Please don’t bother answering me. We will agree to disagree. Greatness can be defined in many ways. Certainly comparing stats is one way. The reason I believe this franchise, including the ownership and coaching staff, players and of course Tom Brady is, up to this point the greatest ever has to do with the totality of what a single organization under a single coach and QB has accomplished since Tom and Coach B came into the organization. It will not last forever of course. We Pats fans know that. But it will be a very long if ever before you see this phenomena again and Tom Brady is a huge part of why this is so.

    • Steve Picray says:

      And if they hadn’t gotten caught cheating repeatedly, I would gladly agree with you.

      • Bonnie says:

        LOL.. your response to Linda is just further evidence that it’s time to take a step back and look at the emotion behind your poor reporting. Being accused and “getting caught” are two wildly different things. Surely with your professed affinity for the Bible you should know the difference. As comments are posted, you deny and defy as if you have something to prove. Pride before the fall.

  7. Diane Shamp says:

    Well i think you might neeed to re write this article bud! Lol! He surpassed alot of records this year and hopefully after a 5th Superbowl win there will be no doubt of how many GOATS are actually in that pic! 😉

    • Steve Picray says:

      Actually no. He did NOT “surpass alot of records.” If you believe he did, please tell me which ones he did. The only record he currently holds that I’m aware of is “most superbowls as starting QB” (at six. If he plays in the game next week, that goes to seven). But he’s held that record since two years ago when I wrote this article.

      • Tom Connolly says:

        He now holds the record for consecutive championship games (6) and touchdown passes to interception ratio in a single season 27-2.

        • Steve Picray says:

          Yes, the Patriots attended the past six AFC Championship games. Yes, they only won three of them. Yes, the fact that the Patriots went to the Super Bowl three out of the past six years says a lot about the team, not specifically the QB.

          Yes, Brady beat out Nick Foles (lol) for the 27-2 record. No, these two things don’t make him the GOAT.

  8. Michelle Reese says:

    I’m a huge Patriots fan and I have lived my entire life in Massachusetts. I’ve been a Pats fan since I was a little girl. First of all…what’s with all of the hostility? We’re only stating personal opinions. There is no doubt that Tom Brady leads the NFL in various records. To put in my two cents, I say that if Tom Brady and the Patriots win Superbowl LI then Tom Brady has definitely earned the title of GOAT. Why don’t we wait until after the Superbowl to start screaming at each other?

    • Steve Picray says:

      The only hostility I’ve noted here is from Patriots fans. What have I said that could be construed as “hostile”? On the other side, I’ve been called stupid, a coward, lazy, and worse (comments I haven’t allowed on the site).

      I understand you’re only stating personal opinions, but isn’t that what I’m doing?

      Tom Brady only leads in one or two records (like “most Super Bowls attended”). The only individual record he holds is “best touchdown passes to interception ratio in a single season” (as Tom Connolly pointed out).

      I’m not screaming at anybody. If you read the comments, I’ve even said things like “If Brady wins another Super Bowl I would have to reconsider…”

      I have friends who are Pats fans, and we get along just fine. But allow me my own belief until the evidence is overwhelming. So far it isn’t.

  9. Michelle Reese says:

    When I referred to hostility I meant from the fans. I was trying to tell my ill-mannered fellow fans that everyone is entitled to their opinion. In my opinion, the Patriots are great and so are many other teams. I really wish our loyal fans could express their opinions without being nasty and stooping to infantile insults. You have done a great job keeping your composure in this sea of rudeness. Not all Patriots fans are jerks.

  10. Michelle Reese says:

    Apology accepted…I probably could have stated it a bit more clearly. I’m a Patsie that really can’t stand the way some fans behave. I’m disgusted by the idiot that pulled the alarm in the Steelers hotel. Dare or no dare…he’s stupid. I feel that if Patriots fans are so highly regarded by the team than we should live up to that standard. Anyone who doesn’t really isn’t a true fan or a true New Englander. Thank you for letting me share my thoughts and stay strong!

  11. Michelle Reese says:

    Hopefully other fans will read the comments we have both made and learn how to be a real football fan. Good luck with the hotheads! 😊

  12. Stout Manson says:

    That is not a goat, so you are correct, there is only one GOAT in the picture. The other is a “kid”…which is a baby goat. Mehhh! Go PATS!

  13. Gilberto Berlanga says:

    As what happened yesterday, Do you still Think the Same way as 2 years ago??

    • Steve Picray says:

      Nobody thinks the same way as two years ago. We have new information. I have tremendous respect for Tom Brady, and I concede that he may indeed be the GOAT. I’m not going to say he’s not.

  14. Susie Football says:

    Brady is among the greatest, however, the “Goat”? I don’t think so!! Deflate Gate not included, past cheating hurts!!

    • Steve Picray says:

      If you’ll note, I reference the Patriot’s cheating as one of the reasons I will never call him the GOAT. At this point though, I’m not going to argue with those who think he is. Why? Because Brady’s so good he didn’t even NEED to cheat. That’s what makes the cheating worse: it was unnecessary.

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