Brady, the Mannings and His Legacy
Tom Brady has been compared to Peyton Manning so often, and usually, this comparison between the two quarterbacks is based upon Super Bowl appearances and wins. With Manning’s embarrassing defeat to the Seattle Seahawks in Super Bowl XLVIII, the quarterback controversy between Brady and Manning has been muddled further.
While Brady hasn’t won a Super Bowl since the 2004-2005 season, he has still made two appearances since that spell. Both Super Bowl births saw the Patriots pitted against the New York Giants, and the former Michigan golden boy fell from grace in both games. Eli Manning has seen to it that Brady stays humble with only three championship victories. Peyton knocked the Patriots out of the playoffs in the AFC Championship this past January.
Brady could definitely overcome the “postseason Mannings” in his final years as an NFL quarterback. However, given many inconsistent performances in his 2013-2014 campaign, it is difficult to predict whether or not the 36-year-old can muster up another Super Bowl triumph. As stated by NFL.com, he threw for a mere 25 touchdown passes in 2013; at the same time, Brady compiled one of his weakest single-season quarterback ratings (87.3) and completion percentages (60.5).
Granted, he didn’t possess many dynamic offensive weapons last year, but excellent wide receivers and tight ends haven’t provided Brady with Super Bowl conquests as of late. Many blame the Patriots’ misfortunes on the lack of defensive talent. I think that the defense does, in fact, hinder the Patriots’ capacity to snag another SB win. That said, an improved secondary and a general coaching emphasis on defensive aggression should be New England’s gospel in 2015. Provided that the Pats also sign a big, physical playmaker and lock up a quick, tough slot guy at the wide receiver position, Brady could find himself within reach of solidifying his legacy as the best quarterback of all time–tied for the most Super Bowl wins (with Terry Bradshaw and Joe Montana) and enjoying superb numbers year in, year out.