January 23, 2020
The iconic Patriots Dynasty’ of 19-years is now in peril. Patriots fans and haters all over the world are anticipating Tom Brady’s decision to continue playing in the NFL. If it is the end of the Brady-Belichick era they have been arguably the best coach/quarterback duo in NFL history.
Future Hall of Fame quarterback Tom Brady entered the draft in 2000 and previously played at the University of Michigan. Bill Belichick left the New York Jets organization after only three years and moved onto bigger and better things with the New England Patriots. Tom Brady was selected by head coach Bill Belichick as the 199th player in the 2000 draft. Brady started as a backup to Drew Bledsoe who suffered an injury in Week 2 of the 2001 season. Brady soon proved his worth on the field and beat out Bledsoe for the starting position. In 2002, Brady won his first Super Bowl in his first full season of being a starter. Brady defeated the St. Louis Rams 20-17. The start of the Patriots Dynasty’ had begun…
Two shorts years later at the age of 26, Tom Brady played in his second Super Bowl, winning against the Carolina Panthers 32-29. The Patriots also won the following years’ Super Bowl, beating the Philadelphia Eagles 24-21 in 2005. Even though Brady’s Super Bowls were determined by three points each, the Patriots were still considered a major threat in the early 2000’s. The Patriots’ 2006 team lineup looked promising and ended with a 12-4 win-loss record in the regular season. The Patriots lost in the Conference Championship to the Indianapolis Colts.
The 2007 New England Patriots finished off the regular season undefeated but lost in the Super Bowl to the New York Giants. This game, Super Bowl XLII, is regarded by many as one of the biggest upsets in Super Bowl history. The Patriots were favored by 12 points but lost 17-14. Eli Manning threw to wide receiver, David Tyree, with little time left in the game. One of the most spectacular catches in Super Bowl history due to the catch’s lack of grace, Tyree hauled in a 33-yard pass using his helmet to secure the ball in mid-air. It’s a catch that never gets old to watch, especially for avid Patriots haters.
After the ego-crushing Super Bowl loss, the Patriots did not make a Super Bowl appearance until 2012. That 2011-2012 season ended in yet another loss in the Super Bowl to Eli Manning and the New York Giants.
In the following years, the Deflategate scandal would take over NFL media. The controversial accusation regards Tom Brady and his supposedly poor morals cast a dark shadow over New England.
The 2014 AFC Championship Game between the Indianapolis Colts and the New England Patriots sparked an investigation. Tom Brady was suspected to have his game footballs deflated intentionally, ultimately making the football easier to throw. The NFL took this accusation austerely by appointing criminal law lawyer, Ted Wells. Wells concluded that “it is more probable than not that Jim McNally (the Officials Locker Room attendant for the Patriots) and John Jastremski (an equipment assistant for the Patriots) participated in a deliberate effort to release air from Patriots’ game balls after the balls were examined by the referee.” Within his statements Wells declared that Patriots’ quarterback, Tom Brady, was “at least generally aware” that the footballs had less air than compared to “legal” game balls. Meanwhile, head coach Bill Belichick and owner Robert Kraft maintained their denial involving the game balls. The Patriots were fined $1,000,000 and were compelled to forfeit their 2016 first round draft pick and 2017 fourth round draft pick. Tom Brady was punished separately, suspended for four games without pay. The media was in a frenzy over the accusations, but this didn’t come close to ending the Patriots Dynasty’.
A year after the Deflategate, the Patriots’ won Super Bowl 49 against the defending champions, Russel Wilson and the Seattle Seahawks. One of the more exciting Super Bowls the Patriots have won, the game came down to a key defensive play. With the Patriots up 28-24, Wilson and running back Marshawn Lynch had a chance to put the game away. On second and goal at the New England one yard line, with 26 seconds left in the game Wilson attempted a short pass to wide receiver Ricardo Lockette. Cornerback Malcolm Butler made the play of his life and intercepted the ball, ultimately winning the game.
The past three years have been the second most impressive consecutive Super Bowl run. The only team to exceed three ensuing Super Bowl appearances was the 1991-1994 Buffalo Bills.
The 2017 Super Bowl was an eventual comeback for Brady, played against Matt Ryan and the Atlanta Falcons. The 28-3 half time score favored the Falcons, but the Patriots set a Super Bowl record. No one had ever overcame a 10-point deficit in that game…that is until the G.O.A.T (that was hard for me to admit) Tom Brady came into the second half determined to win. It wasn’t uncommon for the Patriots to trail behind opponents in Super Bowls, but this was a work of perfection. With the minutes waning in the third quarter, the Patriots were still down 25 points but were able to tie the game The final test was overtime. New England won the coin toss and elected to receive the kickoff. Doubtful Patriots fans held their breath as Brady made five straight passes leading his team to the two yard line. Brady delivered, winning 34-28.
Not done yet, Belichick lead his team to yet another Super Bowl, though this time he wasn’t so lucky. The 50th Super Bowl featured backup quarterback for the Philadelphia Eagles, Nick Foles, and five-time Super Bowl champion, Tom Brady. The Eagles run was indeed impressive but were they ready to take on the Patriots? YES. The Eagles had a 63 percent third down efficiency followed with 6.1 average yards per rushing attempt. What really gave the Eagles an edge in the win was limiting the Patriots’ time of possession. Despite having little possession, Brady had 500 passing yards and three touchdowns with no interceptions. Still, not able to get the job done, Brady walked out of the stadium with his third Super Bowl loss.
The last Super Bowl appearance for Tom Brady and Belichick was uneventful. One of the most boring Super Bowls (in my opinion), he Los Angeles Rams lost to New England 13-3. I don’t really have much to say about this game…
The Tom Brady and Bill Belichick era, otherwise know as the Patriots Dynasty’, may very well have come to an abrupt end, however. The Patriots were unable to score a bye week in the playoffs due to the explosive Baltimore Ravens led by Lamar Jackson. Heading into the Wild Card round against the Tennessee Titans led by the hulk of a running back, Derrick Henry, the Patriots were actually favored to lose. AND LOSE THEY DID!
The question now pops up: Is Brady going to retire at the age of 42? If he doesn’t retire, will he play under Belichick in New England? Media sources have still found no true answer to these questions, and Patriots fans wait in agony. Analysts speculate Brady could end up with the Los Angeles Chargers, Las Vegas Raiders, or the Indianapolis Colts. If Brady is looking to call it quits, he has most definitely made his mark in the National Football League.
Some of Tom Brady’s most impressive records:
- 58 game winning drives (including postseason)
- 9 Super Bowl appearances
- 6 Super Bowl wins
- 4x Super Bowl MVP