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Tom Brady's Mobility Making Long Conversions the New Normal

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No one would confuse Tom Brady for being a mobile quarterback, but his new movement has brought the offense to a new level.

Greg M. Cooper-USA TODAY Sports

The league should take note that Tom Brady is no longer a statue in the pocket. His feet are no longer both left, made of lead, or tied together. Brady can move out of the pocket and it's an important new addition to an aging quarterback's skill set.

What's been the impact? So far this year, Brady has converted 8/17 (47%) 3rd/4th and 11+ yard situations, with those eight conversions the most ever in Brady's tenure. And there are still seven games to go.

Here's a trail of Brady's progress:

2001: 4/24 (16.7%, 2 interceptions, 6 sacks)

2002: 6/32 (18.8%, 1 interception, 1 sack)

2003: 7/37 (18.9%, 0 interceptions, 2 sack)

2004: 7/31 (22.6%, 2 interceptions, 0 sacks)

2005: 7/27 (25.9%, 0 interceptions, 1 sack)

2006: 5/25 (20.0%, 0 interceptions, 5 sacks)

2007: 4/22 (18.2%, 1 interceptions, 2 sacks)

2009: 4/16 (25.0%, 0 interceptions, 0 sacks)

2010: 5/35 (14.3%, 1 interceptions, 1 sack)

2011: 5/23 (21.7%, 1 interception, 3 sacks)

2012: 6/30 (20.0%, 0 interceptions, 3 sacks)

2013: 4/28 (14.3%, 0 interceptions, 0 sacks)

2014: 8/17 (47.1%, 0 interceptions, 1 sack)

Brady Convert Long

Perhaps Brady is converting at an unsustainable rate- his 158.1 passer rating is the best of any starting quarterback- but he's undeniably turned a corner in his career where he's positively dangerous on third down. That's something the Patriots didn't have in their arsenal before this season.

Teams can no longer just pin back their ears and pressure the pocket against the Patriots; Brady will be able to evade and make a play down the field.

I guess we should get used to that.